The RightWay Team
Franco Vega, Executive Director/Founder
Franco Vega began his career in employment services 23 years ago teaching ‘Rites of Passage’ to transition age foster youth (TAY) with Department of Children & Family Services. From providing case management and supervision for 5-12 year olds to creating a Job Development Component for the youth Opportunity Movement in Watts & Boyle Heights with the Community Development Department for the City of Los Angeles, funded by the Department of Labor, Franco has years of experience working with struggling foster youth, which helped him recognize that it was time to develop a program that combines mental health services and job readiness training for TAY foster youth in Los Angeles County. Franco also created an employment center on Skid Row at the Midnight Mission working with recovering addicts and the homeless population.
Working with struggling foster youth felt like the perfect match for The RightWay Foundation and Franco. Like many of the youth he now serves, Franco Vega had a traumatic upbringing. Franco suffered a great deal of mental/physical abuse and neglect from the one person who should have protected him the most, his mother. Franco’s dad, who was a good father, died of a terrible disease, alcoholism. Five years later Franco’s mother passed away of cancer. At the age of 15, he was now in and out of juvenile hall and remained on probation until the age of 18 years old. He bounced around to more than ten different schools and graduated from a continuation high school before enlisting in the U.S. Army. He received an honorable discharge in 1995. In 2000, he crossed the stage from California State University of Dominguez Hills with a degree in Human Services and has been hard at work with projects related to job development for underserved communities.
Aside from running the Foundation like a family, Franco has a family of his own, raising four beautiful children (23 years, 19 years, 11 years, and 2 years), and finds time to coach little league baseball and sit on several boards. Franco and The RightWay Foundation provide support in a family atmosphere, and are building new foundations the right way, one foster youth at a time.
Andraya slyter,Chief Operating officer/therapist
Andraya Slyter is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and the Director of Programs for The RightWay Foundation. She earned a BA in Psychology from California State University, Long Beach in 2002 and a Masters of Social Work with a focus on Community Organizing, Planning, and Administration from University of Southern California in 2004. For over 10 years, Andraya has been providing outpatient and field based clinical services to families, children, and transition age youth in residential treatment facilities, schools, and in the community. Her passion for working with foster youth began when she was a Unit Leader for the National Family Life and Education Center, facilitating life skills and personal empowerment workshops to teenagers in the Child Welfare system. In her current role, she oversees RightWay's core program Operation Emancipation and the mental health services program at The RightWay Foundation, which includes supervising Bachelors and Masters of Social Work interns from CSULA, CSUDH, USC, and Columbia University.
shawn evangelista, job development
Shawn started at Rightway Foundation as a Graphic Designer and gradually took on more roles as time progressed. He then began helping with administration and case managing, and he is now working on job development. He loves working with the youth and showing them the RightWay to approaching life. His main goal is to ensure a prosperous and successful future for the youth. He has studied Audio Engineering at Pasadena City College, Visual Communications at Los Angeles Trade Technical College, and is now working on obtaining his BS in Marketing Management from Western Governors University.
Jennifer Ojeda, Case Manager
Jennifer Ojeda is a recent Magna Cum Laude graduate from California State University, Los Angeles, where she earned her Bachelors degree in Social Work. While in school, Jennifer was an outstanding member of the Tau Eta Chapter of Phi Alpha National Social Work Honor Society, where she was introduced to a multitude of underprivileged populations. Jennifer also enjoys volunteering for organizations that gear towards homelessness, youth, and education. Jennifer began her journey with RightWay as an intern in August 2016. The RightWay has given Jennifer the opportunity to truly dedicate her time to empowering individuals. Currently, Jennifer serves as a case manager for RightWay, providing multiple services for our youth.
haley ko, administrative Assistant
Haley is a recent graduate from California State University, Long Beach, where she earned her BA in English Education, with an emphasis in Africana Studies, and English Literature. She has always been passionate about engaging in conversations involving marginalized youth in America, and now RightWay has given Haley the opportunity to actually do something for marginalized youth, particularly emancipated foster youth. Haley began working with RightWay in August of 2018 and is currently in charge of tending to the administrative needs of the office as well as managing all RightWay media platforms.
Marsheila Sharber, compliance/accounting
Juliana Bollo, Case Manager
Andrew hawkins, case manager
Our wonderful interns
Heather Alexander, MSW, University Southern California Savannah Coker, MSW, California State University, Los Angeles Imani Webb, MSW, University of Southern California Evelinda Parra, MSW, California State University, Dominguez Hills
Leslie Perez, BSW, California State University, Long Angeles
our Supportive board
(Listed from left to right, as pictured)
Franco Vega CEO/Founder
Wayani Jakai Taylor, Esq., CEO
Nell Rutledge-Leverenz, Board President
Paul Tacorian, CEO
Stephen Alexander, Senior Vice President
Tammara Anderson, Executive Director
Nick Buford, Esq., Board Treasurer
Whitney Leigh Morris, Co-Founder
Jasmine Plummer, PhD, Project Scientist