After several years working in non-profit organizations, including more than 10 years as Executive Director of Group 14621 Community Association, I became the Coordinator for the Empire State Housing Alliance (ESHA), a statewide coalition of housing organizations and advocates on April 1, 2008. With representatives from rural areas, upstate cities, and New York City, the members of ESHA have developed a comprehensive housing platform for New York State with a focus on increased resources for affordable housing. In March 2009, a White Paper on New York’s housing needs and gaps was released, using data gathered from surveys, focus groups and secondary sources. At the same time, draft legislation was finalized by ESHA membership that would establish a dedicated funding source for affordable housing development. The Empire State Housing Investment Fund was introduced in the Senate Housing Committee, as S. 5727 on June 1, 2009, and referred to the Finance Committee for review.
As director of Group 14621, my work included advocacy, working in partnership with residents, the police department, city agencies or other resources to improve quality of life. This neighborhood based, resident-controlled organization serves a neighborhood of 36,000 residents. With the rate of childhood lead poisoning in the 14621 neighborhood among the highest in Monroe County, I joined the Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning committees and helped work to enact the City of Rochester’s historic primary prevention ordinance in 2005. I have also served on the community advisory team overseeing the implementation of this legislation, and on the evaluation committee that worked with Center for Governmental Research to report on the progress of year one of the law. I am entering my second term as co-chair of the coalition.
I have served on several special task forces, including a Blue Ribbon Panel to review City School District finances. After identifying deteriorated paint in one of the city schools, as co-chair of the Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning, I worked as part of a team to establish a Lead Safe Schools policy. I have been a member of several housing coalitions, including the Neighborhood Preservation Coalition of NYS where I served as President in 1997-98, and the Empire State Housing Alliance. I have worked on brownfield issues, neighborhood safety, education, and literacy issues over the past fifteen years as while working in various neighborhoods in the city of Rochester. I also serve on the boards of Leadership Rochester, the Community MicroEnterprise Center, and Prevention 1st Foundation.
Education: BS, Organizational Management, Roberts Wesleyan College