Leadership Transition
A place of hope and change for women.
women experiencing homelessness, women, homeless, homelessness, shelter, safety, stability, women's shelter, day center, Sophia's Place, Helen's Place, Bellevue, Kirkland, homeless in King County, housing
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Leadership Transition

The Sophia Way Board of Directors
Announcement of Executive Director Resignation

February 20, 2019

It is with mixed emotions of sadness and gratitude that the Board of Directors announces the
departure of Angela Murray as Executive Director of The Sophia Way, effective March 15.  She has brought this organization to a new and impactful place and is looking forward to new career opportunities.  We will miss her vision for The Sophia Way and the women we serve and wish her
the best of luck in her new endeavors.

Angela joined the Sophia Way in April 2015 and played a critical role in stabilizing the organization and growing its programs and outreach. Her inspiring leadership enabled The Sophia Way to step up and serve the rapidly increasing number of women in greater need of support, shelter, and housing. She built a strong team, instilling an empathic and caring work culture that motivated the staff to give the best of themselves.

We thank her for dedicated service and her many significant accomplishments and outcomes, including:

  • Leading the organization through adaptive changes as we adopted the Housing First approach;
  • Strengthening the Eastside Emergency Shelter program for women;
  • Expanding funding for programs including an 85% increase in the Day Center hours and operating the Eastside Emergency Shelter from 7 months to year-round;
  • Starting a new Street Outreach Program to reach women with support who are living in their cars and other unsheltered eastside locations;
  • Building a resilient and racially diverse team that practices Trauma Informed Care and Harm Reduction, while advocating for competitive wages for all staff;
  • Expanding the donor base by 100% and doubling the organization’s budget;
  • Increasing the average number of women housed each year by 50% and the number of women served across all programs by nearly 100%.

We are especially grateful for her leadership in partnering with Catholic Community Services, New Bethlehem Project and a broad coalition of cities, county and state funders to plan and begin building the first 24/7 Eastside permanent emergency shelter, and in helping secure the majority of funding needed by The Sophia Way. We look forward to celebrating at our groundbreaking in early April!

Angela shares her thoughts on her departure, “I feel fortunate to have worked for such a vital mission and to have carried forward the spirit and vision of our founder. It has been particularly fulfilling to have been part of a team that was able to help change the lives of so many women in our programs. I want to thank the Board, the staff, and our community of donors and volunteers for their passion and support that helped us grow and extend our reach to help more women who are experiencing homelessness. I’m excited for the prospects of The Sophia Way under new leadership and fully expect to see greater levels of community impact and the stories of even more women who can regain their housing and their lives by reaching out to The Sophia Way.”

The Board will be working with an interim Executive Director to review and weigh the many opportunities to expand our community impact while building more robust programming to support the growing number of women we are serving.  Angela will support this transition by working with the interim before she leaves in mid-March.

To honor and thank Angela for her dedicated service and exceptional leadership, please join the board at a farewell party on Friday, March 15 from 4 – 6 p.m.  We will share more details in the coming days.

Thank you for your continued support of The Sophia Way during this important leadership transition.

Sincerely,

Aaron Hager

Board Chair