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Announcing City Year San Antonio’s New Executive Director

“I feel honored and humbled to step into the role of Senior Vice President & Executive Director of City Year San Antonio. I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity and I look forward to advancing educational equity in San Antonio with our staff, AmeriCorps members, partners and champions.”

– Abigale James Van Haselen

We are excited to share that Abigale James Van Haselen has been selected to lead our San Antonio site as its next Executive Director.

This decision was not taken lightly. During our search, we met with a talented and diverse pool of candidates with a deeply vested interest in the young people of San Antonio. Our goal was to identify a candidate that would honor the needs and desires of the San Antonio team, the local advisory board, and the community at large. We took the time to speak with the City Year San Antonio board and staff to learn about their hopes for the site’s next leader. We appreciate those who participated for sharing their thoughtful feedback throughout this process.

Together, they shared that CYSA’s next leader should be a people-centered connector who exhibits a high degree of integrity, humility, and resilience. This individual should understand the importance of getting to know each member of the team and have a strong understanding of their strengths and opportunities for professional development. The new ED should have a clearly stated vision that inspires their team to collaborate and innovate. This new leader should be a recruiter with a passion for elevating our impact and profile in the San Antonio community. This individual should use data to drive equitable decision-making. Finally, this strong leader should continually invest in their own learning around diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging and ensure the advancement of these values within the site for years to come.

Abigale has proven herself to be the right candidate for this role and we believe in her ability to care for the members of our City Year San Antonio team while driving positive outcomes for our students and AmeriCorps Members. In her most recent role as Development Director for the site, Abigale demonstrated an ability to quickly learn and exceed expectations. With a penchant for competition, she faced challenges posed by the pandemic head-on to ensure the fiscal stability of the organization. Abigale has been intentional about breaking down silos that stand in the way of success. She understands the importance of articulating our impact and has been meticulous in the way she utilizes data to tell the story of our work. Because of her tenacity, City Year San Antonio collected 108% of its private revenue goal in FY21. With this momentum, Abigale and the team went on to secure $100k from Impact San Antonio for the first time in the site’s history. She attributes this to the strong collaboration of the site’s leadership and Impact teams who worked together to paint an authentic portrait of the value City Year has brought to its surrounding communities.

Prior to joining City Year San Antonio as Director of Development & Communications, Abigale worked abroad in Thailand for LIFT International, an anti-trafficking nonprofit. Prior to LIFT, she worked in the corporate world for nearly 10 years. Her corporate experience taught her how to make money, how to create systems, and how to be efficient. She made the decision to leave the corporate world because she wanted to put people first and to use her skills to help others. While she excels at creating systems that create transparency and structure, her true joy comes from creating unity, mutually beneficial relationships, helping people to understand others’ roles, and praising them for the hard work they do.

As Executive Director, Abigale will lead 20 staff members and 98 AmeriCorps Members serving in 9 partner schools. She will oversee an annual budget of $4.6M and work closely with her local advisory board to secure the resources necessary to ensure sustainability, growth, and scale to achieve City Year’s national long-term impact goals.

We are grateful for the leadership of a few individuals who made it possible for us to participate in a thoughtful search process. Interim SVP of Talent Acquisition, Nichole Yates, and Operations Manager for Market 2, Yoellie Perez; our CYSA Advisory Board and our Staff Search Committee members. Additionally, we send gratitude to our Staff Executive Leadership Team, and our Interim Executive Director Matt Wernsdorfer has been outstanding and worked hard to ensure that our people were taken care of during this transition period. Thank you for demonstrating the power of teamwork!

Abigale’s first day in her new role will be April 11th, 2022. We look forward to seeing what the future has in store for the City Year San Antonio team under her leadership. Please join us in congratulating Abigale.

 

Abigale James Van Haselen

Abigale James Van Haselen is passionate about making a more equitable world for future generations. Most recently she served as the Director of Development for City Year San Antonio. Under her leadership, City Year San Antonio was awarded the High Impact Education Grant by Impact San Antonio and she has worked hard to ensure City Year San Antonio has meaningful relationships with all City Year champions, partners, and stakeholders.

Prior to joining City Year San Antonio, Abigale worked overseas in Thailand as the Business Operations Director for an international anti-trafficking NGO. During her time there, she worked closely with Thai law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and nonprofits to create an intelligence network that shares data that helps government officials understand the trends of human trafficking in the region.

Before entering the nonprofit world, she worked in the business sector where she served as the Director of Southern California for Bisnow, the largest commercial real estate media firm, for Groupon in the travel sector, and she worked internationally in Istanbul, Turkey as an investment banker that helped international companies, such as Pfizer, acquire or merge with Turkish firms. Her diverse background gives her the ability to understand the for-profit and non-profit sectors and how they can work together to create a better world. Abigale believes change occurs when great people with common values work together.

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