Wilton Youth Council president Vanessa Elias announced on Monday that the organization has brought on longtime volunteer Genevieve Eason as the organization’s first executive director.

Since its founding in the late 1980’s, Wilton Youth Council has been a volunteer-led organization. Board members contribute time and talent generously to support its mission of promoting and protecting the social, emotional and mental well-being of Wilton’s students. Wilton Youth Council and Wilton Youth Services, a division of Wilton Social Services, work together to develop parent education and connection, extracurricular programs for youth, and community-wide initiatives.

“Wilton Youth Council has grown considerably the last few years and the demand for our work is so great that it became clear to our Board of Directors that for the long-term health of the organization, we needed a part-time paid executive director,” says Elias. “We are thrilled that Genevieve accepted the position. Her in-depth knowledge and experience, coupled with her passion, are a lucky catch for us.”

For the last three years, Eason has been the vice president of the Board and chaired the Parent Education Committee.

“I got involved with Wilton Youth Council because of a personal interest in promoting adolescent well-being,” says Eason. “Working on parent education for the last few years has been so rewarding. The community interest and participation in our programs is strong, and there are always more topics to cover. I am grateful to the Board of Directors for selecting me to be part of this next chapter, and I’m looking forward to working closely with them to execute Wilton Youth Council’s mission.”

One of Eason’s first initiatives will be to secure funding for the position. “Wilton Youth Council addresses problems that can be life-threatening, like depression and addiction, and we do it without any financial support from state or town government. We already have a substantial three-year commitment from a Wilton family, and we are in the midst of our annual appeal. We are optimistic that the community will respond generously.”

In her new role, Eason will be responsible for supporting all of Wilton Youth Council’s programs, including Youth to Youth and PeerConnection at Middlebrook School; Warrior Council and PeerVention at Wilton High School; parent education events; and the Free Play Matters Task Force. She will continue to develop Wilton Youth Council’s collaborations with Wilton Youth Services, Wilton Public Schools, and other youth-serving organizations to sustain and build effective programming, and identify and meet the needs of youth in Wilton.