Abby Snay began her career with JVS 36 years ago as a part-time counselor to high school students and served as assistant director for several years before becoming Executive Director of JVS in 1984.
Under Snay's leadership, the JVS budget has increased from $300,000 to $7 million, the staff has grown from 15 to a team of 75, and tens of thousands of JVS clients have built their skills and found new jobs. JVS now offers job placement and skills training to 5,000 individuals a year, including youth in special education classes, dislocated professionals, immigrants and refugees, adults and youth with disabilities, the Jewish community, and the transgender community. The JVS sector-based approach to employment, which focuses on industries with opportunities for growth and advancement, gives the agency particular strength in placing clients in health care, business services and nonprofit jobs.
In 2011, Snay was named the Bay Area's Most Admired CEO by the San Francisco Business Times. She was also honored in 2010 and in 2008 by the Business Times as one of the Bay Area's 100 Most Influential Women. Snay sits on the Board of Directors of the National Council on Workforce Education and the board of the National Skills Coalition, the Citizens' Advisory Committee of the San Francisco Department of Children, Youth, and their Families (DCYF) In 2010, she was appointed to serve on California's Healthcare Reform Workforce Group, an advisory body poised to influence statewide policy and planning related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
During Snay's tenure, JVS has received numerous honors and recognitions, including the Achievement in Employment Award by the Mayor's Committee for the Employment of Persons with Disabilities in 2000 and the Enterprise Foundation's Award for Excellence in Workforce Development in 2001. Snay herself was appointed by Mayor Gavin Newsom to the Universal Health Care Council in 2006, as well as the Employment, Education and Training Committee and the Business Advisory Committee of the Mayor's Welfare Reform Task Force in San Francisco. Snay has served on the Mission Bay Community Advisory committee and the San Francisco County Leadership Board of the United Way, and has participated in the Chamber of Commerce's Leadership San Francisco Program and the IAJVS Executive Director's Council. An active member of the community, Snay served on the San Francisco Workforce Investment Board and its Executive Committee from 2000 to 2008.
Both local and national media have featured Snay's workforce development expertise. She has been interviewed by such media outlets as KTVU, KGO, KCBS, ABC, the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Francisco Business Times, and the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer. In 2010, then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi visited JVS, praising the agency for its success in getting Americans back to work, and acknowledging Snay's impressive contributions to the workforce development community.
A native of Chicago, Snay holds a bachelor's degree in English and a master's degree in Counseling from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. She has also completed executive education programs at Harvard School of Business and Stanford Graduate School of Business.