The Silicon Valley Business Journal
November 29, 2018
By Lynn Peithman Stock, Deputy Managing Editor, Silicon Valley Business Journal

These days, it’s rare to find anyone who still works for the company they started out with more than 30 years ago.

Tony Ganger, chief development officer of YMCA Silicon Valley, is one of those unusual executives who has done just that, and today, is responsible for 20 percent of the Y’s $78 million budget.

Tony Ganger is Chief Development Officer at YMCA of Silicon Valley.Ganger’s first “job” with the YMCA was as a summer dishwasher at YMCA Camp Horseshoe in West Virginia when he was 14 years old.

He continued with Y programs through high school and college, such as Model United Nations and camps, “I accepted my first full-time professional position with the YMCA in 1988, fresh out of college.

“I thought, ‘Well, why not? I’ll do this for a few months and then go on to a real career.’ And, 30 years later, here I am.”

Ganger came on board with YMCA Silicon Valley as its chief development officer in 2013. Since then, the Y’s annual fundraising has increased by 34 percent. He is responsible for $17 million of funds raised through public and private contributions and government grants. He oversees its annual campaign, major gifts, capital campaigns, corporate giving and government support.

“Tony is a masterful coach who has helped Y staff and volunteers educate and increase the number of Y donors investing in our kids and our community,” said Sandy Berlin Walker, Silicon Valley Y president and CEO. “Tony builds authentic relationships and understands that donors are inspired by programs that deliver positive outcomes for kids and families.”

In fact, watching those relationships blossom is one of Ganger’s favorite parts of being associated with YMCA Silicon Valley.

“I get the opportunity to connect individuals, corporations, foundations with opportunities that they’re passionate about, especially around working with young people and helping to develop young people. I get to make that bridge between what a perspective donor’s interest is and the work we’re doing in the YMCA.”

The regional Y itself serves more than 256,000 community members and participants, many of whom live below self-sufficiency.

This year, the YMCA Silicon Valley raised $4.2 million to bring more families and individuals into the association.

“We have a real commitment to make sure that every kid can participate. So, to be able to secure those resources to help cover the cost of that is one of the things that I get to do, that’s pretty cool.”

Throughout the years, Ganger has worked at various Ys as district director, youth director, membership director, branch director, senior program director, director of development and vice president of operations, and associate director and senior director of foundation relations for the YMCA of the USA, most recently in the national Y offices in Chicago.

Here in Silicon Valley, “I am most proud that we’ve built a strong culture of philanthropy with our donors, volunteers and staff,” Ganger said.

“Our supporters recognize that even though we live in one of the wealthiest places on earth, there is a large number of kids, families and individuals that struggle to make ends meet. In fact, 20 percent of our neighbors are living below self-sufficiency. YMCA of Silicon Valley is committed to making sure that 100 percent of the children from families living below self-sufficiency have access to our programs and services. That’s what makes me most proud to serve as a staff member of this Y.”

Tony Ganger | YMCA of Silicon Valley, Chief Development Officer

  • Age: 54
  • Website:
  • Industry: Nonprofit
  • Description: The Y strengthens communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.
  • Year company founded: 1844 (founded in London) and 1867 (established in San Jose)
  • Number of current employees: 3,400
  • 2017 revenue: $78,000,000
  • Career path: Vice president of operations, Mt. Diablo Region YMCA; director of corporate and foundation relations, University of California at Berkeley, Haas School of Business; senior director, financial development, national offices of the YMCA; chief development officer, YMCA of Silicon Valley

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