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

Introducing Tia Smith and Jack Zhang to the Funders Together Team

Funders Together to End Homelessness is excited to welcome Tia Smith and Jack Zhang as the newest members of the Funders Together staff! 



Tia Smith (they/them/theirs) steps into the role of Director of Membership and Programs with a decade of experience in the non-profit sector supporting youth and entrepreneurs as they navigate and combat systems of poverty.  

Throughout their previous roles, Tia’s focus has been supporting youth through a trauma-informed lens and finding innovative ways to give them the agency to share their stories in ways that are empowering and healing. Tia is passionate about reimagining our world and using programming and relationship-building as tools to nurture those imagined possibilities. 

“Love and disruption resonates deeply with my ethos. I believe in change and transformation in this generation. I believe that Funders Together is uniquely poised to nurture and motivate that change in and out of our network. I am excited to get to know our members and support their deliberate evolution. I am looking forward to being challenged and to push philanthropy to go a bit deeper in their work and their relationships with each other and their grantees,” Tia said. 

As our Director of Membership and Programs, Tia will support our members through relationship-building and connecting the dots between their grantmaking and meaningful change. In addition, they will curate programming and networking opportunities to support our commitment to housing justice and liberation. 

Jack Zhang (he/him/his) joins us as the Programs and Communications Manager. In his role, he manages Funders Together email communications, the website, blog posts, and social media. In addition, Jack will help support programming for our different member networks, upcoming webinars, and in-person events. He steps into this role with several years of previous experience in community organizing at state and national levels, programming, and communications management. 

"After becoming immersed in the world of housing issues through some of my previous experiences, I am excited to join Funders Together in their mission to end homelessness, especially with their focus on racial equity, housing justice, and holistic wellness. I believe that housing is a fundamental human right and is essential towards empowering individuals to break cycles caused by systemic barriers and inequality,” Jack said about joining Funders Together. 

Most recently Jack was a Senior Membership Development Associate at The Conference Board, a global think tank, and the Student Outreach Lead Coordinator at Embolden, a leadership and career exploration program for first-generation and low-income students. Jack comes to Funders Together with a passion for storytelling for social change and has previously worked with individuals without permanent housing in Williamsburg, Virginia. 

Please join us in welcoming Tia and Jack! 


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  • Jack Zhang
    published this page in Blog 2022-10-25 14:36:12 -0400

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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