Joel John Roberts

Chief Executive Officer, PATH


Housing and Homelessness Columnist

Column contributed fourth Monday of every month

Joel Roberts joined PATH in September, 1996 and currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer for PATH. In 1996, PATH was a local one-site project in West Los Angeles.

Under Joel’s leadership, the agency has grown into a multi-site, nationally-recognized leader in social services, known for its innovative co-location approach. Joel’s professional background is in International Relief and Development.

He holds a Master’s Degree in Cross Cultural Studies from Fuller Seminary and a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications from California State University, Long Beach. When Joel has spare time, he likes to travel to exotic places around the world.


Roberts: Veteran homelessness affects the whole family

Twenty-three years ago, I started as the leader of a small homeless agency in West Los Angeles. Back then we used to be a 90-days program – within that small span of time, we would help someone who was homeless get a job, save money, move into an apartment and get back on their feet....

Roberts: Cheaper housing: another method or a new paradigm?

All throughout California, everyone is talking about how we need to create cheaper housing for people who are homeless. As homelessness increases throughout the state, and millions and millions of taxpayer dollars have been invested in homeless services and housing, the people who paid those taxes are losing their patience. The media has picked up...

Roberts: Why is it so difficult to help people who are homeless?

Fifteen years ago, I was working with a newly hired PATH employee who had just graduated from our local college. We were tasked to persuade a neighborhood and its political leaders that a homeless shelter we wanted to build would help, not hurt, the community. After countless, and frankly, excruciating community meetings and difficult political...

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