A national network of funders supporting strategic, innovative, and effective solutions to homelessness

Alicia Lara

Senior Vice President of Impact, United Way Worldwide

Funders Together Board Vice-Chair


Alicia serves as Senior Vice President of Impact for United Way Worldwide. She is responsible for the development and design of strategies and programs in the areas of education, income and health for the network United Way in the U.S. and internationally.   Most recently, she was the Vice President for Community Investment at the United Way of Greater Los Angeles for nine years where she was responsible for the development and management of policy, research and grant making programs. United Way in Los Angeles is focused on ending homelessness, increasing the high school graduation rate, and increasing the financial stability of low-income families.

Previously, Alicia was with The California Endowment, a private foundation with priorities in the areas of health care access and health disparities. For eight years she held a number of positions there including Vice President of Program; Director of Responsive Grant Making; and Senior Program Officer.

She has served on multiple boards and commissions over the years and is currently on the Institute of Medicine Roundtable on Obesity Solutions and the board of directors for The Ms. Foundation for Women and the Larchmont Charter School. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Political Science from San Diego State University and a Masters Degree in Public Health from the University of California at Los Angeles.  

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We joined Funders Together because we believe in the power of philanthropy to play a major role in ending homelessness, and we know we have much to learn from funders across the country.

-Christine Marge, Director of Housing and Financial Stability at United Way of Greater Los Angeles

I am thankful for the local partnerships here in the Pacific Northwest that we’ve been able to create and nurture thanks to the work of Funders Together. Having so many of the right players at the table makes our conversations – and all of our efforts – all the richer and more effective.

-David Wertheimer, Deputy Director at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Very often a lack of jobs and money is not the cause of poverty, but the symptom. The cause may lie deeper in our failure to give our fellow citizens a fair chance to develop their own capacities, in a lack of education and training, in a lack of medical care and housing, in a lack of decent communities in which to live and bring up their children.

-President Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964 State of the Union Address

Funders Together has given me a platform to engage the other funders in my community. Our local funding community has improved greatly to support housing first models and align of resources towards ending homelessness.

-Leslie Strnisha, Vice President at Sisters of Charity Foundation of Cleveland

Our family foundation convenes local funders and key community stakeholders around strategies to end homelessness in Houston. Funders Together members have been invaluable mentors to us in this effort, traveling to our community to share their expertise and examples of best practices from around the nation.

-Nancy Frees Fountain, Managing Director at The Frees Foundation

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