Elise Buik


In March 2005, Elise Buik made history by becoming the first female President and Chief Executive Officer of United Way of Los Angeles (UWGLA). Under her leadership, UWGLA raised $59.3 million in its 2007-08 campaign year.

Elise has been instrumental in transforming UWGLA from its historical fundraising role into a community impact organization that identifies social issues, convenes experts, partners with other organizations and crafts innovative solutions and policy.

Under her leadership, UWGLA has launched a strategic 10-year action plan called Creating Pathways Out of Poverty to help tackle poverty in L.A. County through ten comprehensive goals with community and programmatic results. This new plan focuses on the three critical issues driving the social and economic trends in the County: meeting basic needs, improving educational achievement and helping families gain financial stability. 
Elise presently serves on the City of Los Angeles Workforce Investment Board, as a Senior Fellow for the UCLA School of Public Affairs, on the Advisory Board for the USC School of Policy, Planning and Development Master of Public Administration program and on the boards of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and Southern California Grantmakers.

Selected Awards:
Tom McGuiness Community Leadership Award
Housing Works, 2012

Nonprofit CEO of the Year Award
Los Angeles Business Journal, 2009

Nonprofit Leadership & Responsibility Award
Edmund G. “Pat” Brown Institute of Public Affairs, 2009

Leadership Award
Peace Over Violence, 2008

Elise Buik