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SVP International

Lauren Johnson, Executive Director

Executive Director

Lauren joined the SVP team in February, 2012 to launch the Ready for Kindergarten Collaborative. In this capacity, Lauren worked to facilitate collaboration between cross-sector partners – by developing shared goals, metrics and strategies – to ensure that all children in Portland have the foundation for learning and life success. Lauren later stepped into the role of Senior Vice President of Community Impact where, for seven years, she was charged with providing strategic direction and oversight of SVP’s capacity building investments.

Having proven that she can deliver on our mission and commitments to the Portland community, Lauren was selected as the new Executive Director in January of 2019. The Board was confident that Lauren has the requisite knowledge, talent, historical perspective, relationships, and leadership that we need to drive progress toward our goals moving forward. Furthermore, Lauren and her team have a strong commitment to advancing racial equity and continue to foster strategic, cross-sector partnerships within our community.
Lauren Johnson as a kiddo
Prior to SVP, Lauren was a Program Officer at Thrive Foundation for Youth (now King Philanthropies). Her focus was studying research on how to help youth thrive, translating it into practical application, and coaching youth development organizations on how to adopt best-practices on thriving. Lauren also brings experience as a Schools Uniting Neighborhoods (SUN) Program Manager, a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Case Manager, and as a Kindergarten teacher in Chile. Her Psychology degree from Williams College has been foundational to all of her work.

When Lauren’s not hard at work for SVP, she’s usually hard at play in the beautiful Pacific NW. She’s passionate about distance running, hiking, road biking and camping in the summer months; when the rain arrives, you’ll still find her running in elite races across the U.S., as well as reading, cross-country skiing or traveling internationally.

Her all-time FAVORITE book as a child? The Little Engine That Could, which she asked her parents to read to her nightly for nearly a year. It made an impact, as today she possesses the determination and optimism of that Little Engine.