Marin Promise Partnership Welcomes Richard Raya as New Chief Executive Officer

June 28, 2024

Dear Marin Promise Partnership Community,

 

On behalf of the Marin Promise Partnership Board of Directors, I am thrilled to share exciting news about our organization’s next chapter. We are pleased to announce Richard Raya as the new CEO of Marin Promise Partnership. Richard will replace Ann Mathieson, founder and current CEO, who announced her intention to retire in February.

 

First, we want to express our deepest gratitude to Ann for her visionary leadership and unwavering dedication to educational equity. Since founding Marin Promise Partnership in 2012, Ann understood that many of Marin’s systemic challenges are too big to solve alone. She worked tirelessly to foster collaboration among partner organizations in Marin to close equity gaps and accelerate tangible outcomes through aligned goals and collective action. Through the Partnership, educational leaders now rally around shared equity goals and continue to collaborate to shift policies, practices, resources and power structures. Ann’s efforts and guidance have laid a solid foundation for Partners to continue working together and take bold action that transforms systems to better serve all students through each stage of their learning journey. Although she is retiring from the day-to-day operations of the Partnership, she will remain an active champion for educational equity in the county.

“Leading Marin Promise Partnership has been an incredibly rewarding experience, and I am immensely proud of what we have accomplished together. As I transition out of this role, I am confident that Richard is the right leader to continue our mission. Richard brings a wealth of experience, a deep commitment to educational equity, and a collaborative spirit that will inspire our partners and community members. I have full faith in his ability to drive our collective vision forward and achieve even greater success for the students of Marin County”

Ann Mathieson, Founder and Outgoing CEO of Marin Promise Partnership

The appointment follows an extensive search process conducted by the Marin Promise Partnership Board. The candidate pool was competitive and diverse. Three final candidates were chosen to participate in a rigorous interview process that included the Board, Leadership Team, Partners, and Backbone Staff.  Through this search, we were looking for an accomplished leader who would bring deep collaboration and systems-change expertise to the Partnership. Most importantly, though, was finding a leader who not only shares our passion for achieving educational equity, but one who champions it.  

Richard is that leader. We are confident that he will lead Marin Promise Partnership with the same passion and commitment that has defined our work thus far. He has over 20 years of executive level experience, focused on bringing elected officials, administrators, funders, and the community together to improve outcomes for low-income families. In his most recent role as Chief Strategy Officer of Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA), Richard helped MEDA’s Promise Neighborhood (MPN) become one of the only Promise Neighborhoods in the country to replace its federal funding with a mix of philanthropic, city, and state funding. Richard helped initiate systems change across San Francisco by aligning MPN’s community-led approach with the Mayor’s COVID recovery plan. His leadership created holistic, cradle-to-career planning processes in the city’s hardest hit neighborhoods and the first Promise City plan in the nation. He is currently a Senior Fellow at Harvard’s EdRedesign Lab, an Ascend Fellow with the Aspen Institute, and a Board Member for StriveTogether. 

“I am honored to join Marin Promise Partnership and build upon the incredible work that has been accomplished. I am committed to fostering collaboration among our partners and tapping into the power of place and resident voice to ensure every student in Marin County has the support and resources they need to succeed. Together, we will continue to align our efforts and create lasting change for generations to come.”

Richard Raya, Incoming CEO of Marin Promise Partnership

 

Building on the remarkable progress made so far, Richard will continue to honor Ann’s legacy and drive our shared vision of educational equity. He will work closely with our Board and Leadership Team, composed of senior leaders from various sectors who establish the direction and priorities for the partnership. Together, they will work to implement collective strategies that create more access to resources and quality education for all children in Marin County. Richard will play a crucial role in bringing this group together, forming new partnerships to expand our collaborative efforts, and facilitating discussions and operations that move talk to action. 

"Under Richard’s leadership, Marin Promise Partnership aims to further its strategic goals. Educational equity is an imperative, and Richard’s experience will ensure we strengthen our ability to center youth and family voices, support community, and take bold action that accelerates impact for all students. We are excited about the future and confident that Richard’s leadership will take our work to new heights.”

Chandra Alexandre, CEO Community Action Marin/ MPP Board Member and Leadership Team Co-Chair

This transition presents a unique opportunity for both current and new partners to deeply engage in a collective effort that is producing tangible results and better outcomes for all our children. We invite all community members, organizations, and leaders to join us in this ongoing journey toward educational equity. Together, we can create a legacy of collaboration that transforms systems for generations to come.

 

Make sure to join our mailing list to be informed about upcoming events such as the return of our Fall Partnership Summit. 

 

In community,

 

Rachel Ruffalo

On behalf of the Board of Directors

Marin Promise Partnership