Va Lecia Adams Kellum
2nd Vice President
President and CEO, St. Joseph Center
Dr. Va Lecia Adams Kellum joined St. Joseph Center in 2008. During her tenure, St. Joseph Center has tripled its staff, expanded its range of services, and broadened its geographic reach to encompass all of LA County, with major service centers on the Westside, in South Los Angeles, and in Downtown LA.
Under Dr. Adams Kellum’s leadership, St. Joseph Center consistently applies best practices to serve new populations and new areas through significant collaboration with governmental, nonprofit, and private sector partners. The Center is a trailblazer in deploying integrated, multidisciplinary teams to help the most vulnerable homeless individuals obtain and maintain stable housing. Since the inception of LA County’s Coordinated Entry System, St. Joseph Center has served as the lead agency for both Individuals and Families on LA’s Westside.
Dr. Adams Kellum serves on the California Department of Housing and Community Development’s No Place Like Home Program Advisory Committee, a role she was appointed to by Governor Jerry Brown and is continuing in under Governor Gavin Newsom. She is the former Chair of the Westside Coalition and represented the Westside on the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority Coordinating Council for many years. She currently serves on the board of directors for Tarzana Treatment Center, located in the San Fernando Valley, and Abode Communities, based in Downtown LA.
Born and raised in Southern California, Dr. Va Lecia Adams Kellum is a graduate of Culver City High School. She received her B.A. from the University of Southern California and earned an M.A. from Ball State University before completing her Ph.D. at Stanford University. Throughout her doctoral program, she examined the factors that create stress in ethnic minority youth, such as poverty, academic underachievement, and family dynamics.
Prior to coming to St. Joseph Center, Dr. Adams Kellum applied her research for six years as the Director of Transitional Living for United Friends of the Children (UFC). While at UFC, she helped create and oversee Pathways, an 18-month transitional living program that assists former foster youth with housing, college readiness, career development, financial assistance, mentoring, and individual counseling.