Thursday, January 5th 2023 Announcements, Early Childhood

Managing director named for Stanford Center on Early Childhood

The role will have responsibility for launching and directing the center’s operating model for accelerating place-based research in the early childhood sector.

by GSE Communications


The Stanford Center on Early Childhood is delighted to announce the appointment of Abigail Stewart-Kahn as Managing Director of the Center.

This new interdisciplinary center seeks to build on new knowledge in health, social and the learning sciences to advance young children’s learning and development in the formative early years from the prenatal period to age eight. 

Faculty director, Professor Philip Fisher, said in an email:

"We are thrilled to add Abigail’s extensive experience in building and implementing new initiatives with and on behalf of the most vulnerable to our team. She will have responsibility for launching and directing the center’s operating model for accelerating place-based research in the early childhood sector. In addition to development of strategy and oversight of operations, Abigail will leverage her considerable skills and experience with public and private systems to develop and expand partnerships with members of the Stanford community as well as community, governmental, and philanthropic organizations in California and across the country. 

"Abigail comes to us from the City and County of San Francisco, where she served in a variety of leadership roles over the last five years. Initially brought on as Director of Strategic Initiatives for the newly formed Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, Abigail was then appointed as interim Executive Director of that department just weeks before the COVID pandemic struck the city. Her leadership during the crisis of the first year and a half of the pandemic drove the largest expansion of housing, shelter, health and other resources for people experiencing homelessness in California and an overall reduction in the number of people experiencing homelessness in San Francisco.  

"That success led the Mayor to tap her to lead the city’s Children and Family Recovery Plan in 2021, where she developed a whole-child, multi-sector strategy for recovery of children and families from the impact of COVID pandemic. Before joining the city, Abigail was Director of Community Education and Strategic Partnerships at the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center, now called Safe and Sound. She worked there and earlier in New York City on direct service, program development, policy and systems change efforts directed at the prevention and treatment of family trauma. Abigail is a licensed clinical social worker by training, an experienced play therapist and holds an M.S. in Social Work from Columbia University and a B.A. in Psychology and Religion from Swarthmore College. She is also the co-author of a book and multiple articles in these areas and has served on regional and national boards and advisory groups for organizations focused on equity."

Stewart-Kahn begins her new role mid-January.