Ellen Gardner

senior program officer

Hired as the Schultz Family Foundation’s first youth-focused program officer in 2014, Ellen develops and manages the Foundation’s strategy to increase income stability and enable the career advancement of young adults. Her investment portfolio focuses on supporting the basic needs of young people, navigation programs and tools that promote upward mobility, leveraging social capital toward career development, and the role employers play in the economic success of young adults. Ellen works closely with leaders across the private and public sectors, nonprofits, and philanthropy to support young people as they transition to adulthood.

Prior to joining the Foundation, Ellen worked in a variety of education-focused organizations including Teach For America, the California Charter Schools Association, and ICEF Public Schools. A recovering politico, Ellen was also an account executive at GMMB, a political and communications consulting firm in Washington, D.C., where she served a wide range of political and nonprofit clients.

A proud “Sagehen,” (CHIRP!) Ellen graduated from Pomona College in Claremont, California with a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Public Policy. She earned a Masters of Public Administration and Certificate in Nonprofit Management at the University of Southern California.

She spends weekends in the mountains hiking or skiing, depending on the season.


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