Community Alliance Against Family Abuse (CAAFA) has selected a new Executive Director to begin leading the Apache Junction-based domestic and sexual violence services organization.
Ray Villa, former Community Partnership Administrator with the Mesa Police Department, had an extensive career in the public sector. His service includes 13 years with the City of Mesa and 21 years as a police lieutenant with the Chandler Police Department. While working with the Chandler Police Department, Villa developed a dating violence program for students in partnership with My Sister’s Place domestic violence shelter, which was taught in all Chandler Unified School District Jr. High Schools and High Schools. The program was called PAVE (Preventing Abuse and Violence through Education). Villa has also extensive experience investigating sexual assault and domestic violence cases. Villa’s first day at CAAFA will be October 8, 2018.
Villa says that he plans to build on CAAFA’s 20-year history of meaningful partnerships within the community. “CAAFA has established itself as a key social services provider in Pinal and eastern Maricopa Counties. This was accomplished by collaborating with organizations and individuals who care deeply about domestic and sexual violence. I look forward to exploring the full potential of these relationships so that we can do even more for survivors in our community,” he said.
Villa was selected following an interview process led by CAAFA’s Board of Directors. Board Chair Maria- Elena Ochoa said, “We were fortunate to meet with many qualified candidates who demonstrated admirable enthusiasm and passion. Ultimately, we agreed that Mr. Villa’s professional history, qualifications, and dedication to the issue of domestic and sexual violence made him the best fit for CAAFA.”
Villa attended University of Phoenix and Northern Arizona University, and his nonprofit experience stems from volunteer service on Boards of Directors for organizations including the Mesa Sunrise Rotary Club and East Valley Adult Services.
As Executive Director of CAAFA, Villa will lead an organization that has seen considerable growth in recent years. According to Ochoa, “In terms of both budget and services, we were strategic in expanding CAAFA’s reach as we rounded the corner to our 20th anniversary. With Mr. Villa on board, we look forward to launching CAAFA’s next phase as we deepen partnerships within our community, and of course, continue driving positive outcomes for the domestic and sexual violence survivors that we serve.”
CAAFA plans to host an open house on October 25, 2018 to honor Domestic Violence Awareness Month, celebrate its 20th anniversary, and to introduce Villa to the community. More details will be shared when they are available.
About Community Alliance Against Family Abuse
CAAFA’s mission is to empower individuals, families, and communities to be free from abuse through collaboration, prevention, awareness, and support. Our agency was founded in 1998 by community members who were confronted by the tragic reality that local victims of domestic violence and their children were living in their cars and out in the desert because they had nowhere to go. CAAFA has grown substantially since then, now serving victims of domestic abuse from Pinal and eastern Maricopa counties. We provide a 16-bed emergency shelter, support groups, legal advocacy, case management, sexual violence victim advocacy, nutritional support through food boxes, community outreach services, and more.