Arizona’s Children Association Names New President & Chief Executive Officer

Posted By on September 23, 2019

Arizona’s Children Association has selected Jacob Schmitt as the organization’s next President and Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. This decision follows the passing of the Association’s late President and Chief Executive Officer, Denise Ensdorff, in May of 2019.

“When we lost Denise in May, we felt the loss of her spirit,” said Anna Osborn, AzCA board chair. “During this difficult time, it was crucial to continue caring for children and families and we knew we needed to find someone who had the ability to lead us through this transition of unprecedented change. Jacob not only embodies the qualities essential to AzCA, but we trust he is committed to our mission.”

On behalf of the board, Osborn expressed confidence in the decision to appoint Schmitt following a comprehensive search process, noting that his passion and experience is what the agency needs to move forward.

Schmitt began his work at AzCA in 2013 and was responsible for AzCA’s performance and quality improvement program as well as compliance with all federal, state, contractual and accreditation requirements. He served as the chief compliance officer and director of quality before recently moving into the role of interim president and CEO.

Schmitt has more than 20 years of experience in providing and overseeing social service programs in both public and private sectors. He holds a bachelor’s degree in special studies from Cornell College and a master’s degree in public administration from Bellevue University.

“Having worked at AzCA for more than five years, I value how the mission and history of the agency drives the important services our staff provides for the children and families across Arizona,” said Schmitt. “It is an honor to be chosen to lead this exceptional organization. I look forward to working alongside our staff and partners in this new role.”

In early June, a CEO search committee was formed, made up of passionate and diverse candidates. The team weighed through the most qualified applicants and chose to interview those who would best represent what AzCA is today and secure the future, serving the families and communities it loves for another hundred years.

“We wanted someone with a passion for our mission, a thoughtful leader who also has astrong business acumen,” Osborn said. “Along with the board’s full support, we’re grateful he has a talented and dedicated staff to support him and AzCA’s mission.”

Ashley Ford

About Ashley Ford

Ashley Ford is Assistant Publisher of Frontdoors Media. She can be reached at