Nice to Meet You

 Jay Elggren, Family Service Director

Jay has worked alongside Premium International Exchange for over 30 years, before starting Family Exchange in 2011. Growing up, his family hosted countless students for the spring and summer exchange program, along with several high school students. His love for the program is what prompted him to establish his own program, and to find a way to give Utah students the same opportunities hundreds of international students have had.  Jay currently works for FortuneFire, specializing in mentoring and training people on how to become investors. Along with doing his own real estate investing.


Paula Elggren, Operations/Placements Director

Paula was introduced to the exchange program when she met Jay. After they married, they have hosted numerous students in their home and she fell in love with the program. She helped to develop Family Exchange and has strived to make it a memorable experience for the teen volunteers, the host families, and the international students. Along with the summer program, she also coordinates High School exchange students for the Western & South-Western states of the US. In addition to being the mom of her 8 beautiful children, Paula stays busy helping Jay with their real estate investment business.



 Abby Palmer, Teen Ambassador Director

Abby has been a part of the exchange program for several years as a host family and recently joined our team as the Teen Ambassador Director. She is the mom to 2 awesome kids who also help with the exchange program. Abby is sweet and great with the kids. She is fun and has great ideas to make the exchange program an adventure. She has an absolute passion for the exchange program and is excited to share this opportunity with everyone. Along with exchange, Abby also works for an elementary school teaching computer skills.



Grandma Sharon Elggren, Foreign Partner Director

Sharon is the reason this whole program began. She worked as a volunteer for the 4-H Japanese exchange program 30+ years ago. When 4-H discontinued the exchange program in Utah, Sharon started her own organization and has brought hundreds of Japanese kids to Utah every year since. Sharon cultivates the relationship with the Japanese foreign partners to make sure that everything runs smoothly in Japan and America. Sharon also works part-time as a dental hygienist. Sharon remains an important part of the program today. Along with her 26 grandkids, all the teens and staff call her Grandma.