United Friends of the Children Announces Dr. Kara Allen Soldati as New President and CEO

Soldati Succeeds Polly Williams, Who Served as President and CEO Since 2001

LOS ANGELES--()--United Friends of the Children (UFC) announced today that Dr. Kara Allen Soldati will succeed Polly Williams as its President and Chief Executive Officer, effective February 8, 2016.

“Polly’s fundamental decency, coupled with her dedication to the young people in UFC’s programs, were a constant source of inspiration to all of us on the Board and to the entire UFC family. We wish Polly luck in the next phase of her life.”

“Kara has dedicated her academic and professional career to supporting and developing organizations and people that help meet the needs of children, families, and communities in historically under-resourced areas, and we are excited at the prospect of Kara’s leadership as United Friends of the Children continues its mission,” said Mitch Evall, UFC’s Board Chair.

“As UFC's incoming President and CEO, I am honored to champion our critical services for young people,” said Dr. Soldati. “I am eager to lead the team as we grow and expand our education and housing programs, and I am committed to ensuring that UFC continues to create life-changing impact for Los Angeles County foster youth.”

Dr. Soldati most recently served families in Los Angeles and the Bay Area as the Executive Director of CoachArt, a nonprofit that creates a transformative arts and athletics community for families impacted by childhood chronic illness. Prior to CoachArt, she served as Chief Operating Officer of arc, a large out-of-school time provider based in Southern California, and also worked and conducted research with child-headed households in Uganda and Haiti. Dr. Soldati holds a doctorate in educational leadership for social justice from Loyola Marymount University (LMU), where she researched student perceptions of the implications of being labeled “at risk.” She also holds a master’s degree in social work from the University of Southern California, completed coursework for a master’s degree in education, and holds a bachelor’s degree from Purdue University.

Ms. Williams departs UFC after serving as its President and CEO since 2001. “During her tenure as President and CEO of UFC, Polly’s leadership enabled UFC to provide sorely needed educational opportunities and housing to thousands of current and former foster youth,” said Evall. “Polly’s fundamental decency, coupled with her dedication to the young people in UFC’s programs, were a constant source of inspiration to all of us on the Board and to the entire UFC family. We wish Polly luck in the next phase of her life.”

“It has been such a privilege to be a part of this organization for the past 15 years,” said Ms. Williams. “I have learned so much from the youth and from the experience and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity. UFC has an incredible Board and staff and such an important mission. I look forward to watching the organization’s continued success under Kara’s leadership.”

About United Friends of the Children:

Founded in 1979, United Friends of the Children is there for foster youth when no one else is. UFC provides critical support to help foster youth graduate from high school, attend and graduate from college, find stable housing, gain employment, and lead successful independent lives. United Friends of the Children empowers current and former foster youth on their journey to self-sufficiency through service-enriched education and housing programs, advocacy, and consistent relationships with a community of people who care.

Visit UFC on the web: www.unitedfriends.org
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Contacts

For more information about UFC, please contact:
United Friends of the Children
Catherine Atack, Director of Development
213-580-1825
Catherine@unitedfriends.org

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