April 13, 2017 – Fred Frelow, a veteran educator who most recently served as senior program officer for the Ford Foundation’s Youth Opportunity and Learning Unit, has joined Say Yes to Education as a Senior Fellow.

At Say Yes, Frelow will support the development and implementation of strategic partnerships with major philanthropic organizations. Those partnerships are intended to expand the capacity of communities across the nation that commit to the goal at the heart of the Say Yes mission: that all children in a community have the preparation to succeed in attaining a college degree or other postsecondary degree, and the wherewithal to afford it.

As a Senior Fellow at Say Yes, Frelow will leverage strategic partnerships with foundations and other nonprofit organizations to enable communities to create a culture and civic infrastructure in service of the goal of postsecondary completion. That scaffolding is, in turn, intended to help communities scale and sustain the offering of academic, social-emotional and health supports, from prekindergarten through grade 12, to ensure young people are ready for a postsecondary education, with access to scholarships to make that education affordable.

“The deep experience that Fred Frelow brings to Say Yes will be invaluable as we seek to align the efforts and objectives of our national philanthropic partners with the ambitions and aspirations of the communities we serve,’’ said Mary Anne Schmitt-Carey, the President of Say Yes to Education. “Those of us who have had the good fortune of learning from Fred during his nine years at the Ford Foundation – and before that the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, among other roles – know first-hand that he has a broad set of skills and an especially engaging sensibility.’’

“It is a privilege to join this team,” Frelow said. “Say Yes has brought unparalleled educational opportunities to students across entire cities in ways that will transform the life trajectory of these young people.”

“Say Yes also seeks to counter the assumption that young people can do this all on their own – that they don’t need a family or a community or a set of relationships to attain postsecondary achievement, and can instead do so merely by lifting themselves up by their bootstraps,’’ Frelow added. “That’s silly. Young people need people who believe in them. That is what Say Yes does. It blazes a trail along the pathway to postsecondary readiness, and arms communities to make available the social capital for young people to be successful.”

Frelow is a member of the National Board of Advisors of Say Yes, and will continue to serve in that capacity. At the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, Frelow served as the Director of Early College Initiatives, where he was responsible for managing the development of 14 early college high schools. He was previously Associate Director in the Working Communities division of the Rockefeller Foundation. He also taught for a dozen years in the public school system in Newton, Massachusetts.

He has a Doctorate in Educational Administration and Policy Analysis from Teacher’s College at Columbia University, and a Master’s in Education and Policy Analysis from Boston University.

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Are you inspired by the goals and approach of Say Yes? We invite you to reach out to the Say Yes National office or to a Say Yes chapter, to learn more about how you can get involved.