Laura Petry, MSW

senior research analyst

Ms. Petry joined ASR in March 2016 as part of the implementation team for Voices of Youth Count, a national initiative to better understand and address youth homelessness. She is passionate about bringing greater visibility to young people experiencing homelessness and housing instability; and committed to achieving social change through youth voice, civic engagement, and community-based research. 

Ms. Petry began her work with young people as a volunteer mentor in 2005, and ultimately led school- and community-based mentorship programs for adolescents across Los Angeles. In 2012, she became a case manager for homeless youth in Hollywood. Since then, her service to young people experiencing homelessness has spanned both nonprofit and public sectors, and ranged from direct practice and program design to public policy and community-based research. 

Her work on youth counts also began in 2012, when she became a research associate under Dr. Colette Auerswald at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. As part of the We Count, California! initiative, Ms. Petry helped conduct a statewide assessment on youth inclusion in California's Point-in-Time Counts, and design and facilitate statewide technical assistance trainings for Continuums of Care. She went on to lead the Greater Los Angeles Youth Count for the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority in 2015 and 2016, the latter of which signified one of the largest survey-based youth counts in the U.S. to-date.

Ms. Petry holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a master's degree in social welfare from the University of California, Berkeley. She resides in Los Angeles.