We at ^Housing Futures believe in highlighting those who work and provide leadership with the public housing sector. Today we highlight 5 Directors of Housing Choice Voucher programs across the USA.
Cynthia West-Setel- Seattle Housing Authority– Cynthia leads a department with a $100M budget and 65 FTE to house homeless and very low income people in Seattle. Of particular interest, Cynthia is the only HCV Director in the country to implement LEAN process improvement in the HCV department. Cynthia ensured that all staff were trained and then ensured that the management team fosters a culture of transparency and staff engagement. Cynthia also worked with colleagues and helped lead projects with Seattle Public Schools, to provide housing to homeless families in Seattle Public Schools to provide stability for the families, as well as for the schools and surrounding community.
Azucena Valladolid- San Diego Housing Commission- Azucena manages the day-to-day operations of the Rental Assistance Division., including the Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) program and the San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) Achievement Academy. The program provides rental assistance to more than 14,000 low-income households in the City of San Diego. The SDHC Achievement Academy provides programs that emphasize career planning, job skills and personal financial education—at no charge to Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) participants and public housing residents. Before she joined SDHC in 2011, Valladolid served as Chief Operations Officer for Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Nevada and Utah, a nonprofit United Way agency and member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.
Lakesha Miller- New York Housing Authority- Lakesha was appointed Vice President for Leased Housing at the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) in August 2015. In this capacity, Ms. Miller provides leadership and strategic guidance as the principal operations manager of NYCHA’s Section 8 Leased Housing program. The largest program of its kind in the country, NYCHA’s Section 8 program provides federally-funded rent subsidy payments for approximately 210,000 low-income Section 8 tenants to 28,300 private participating landlords. In leading and directing the program, Ms. Miller manages operating and subsidy budgets of more than $1 billion, ensuring that policy and objectives are consistent with US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funding and regulations. Ms. Miller holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Relations from Pace University and a Masters of Arts in Organizational Management from University of Phoenix.
Brandee Perez- San Antonio Housing Authority
Brandee Perez is responsible for SAHA’s Federal Housing Programs. Previously, she served as Director of Assisted Housing Programs. In her role, she leads one of the organization’s largest departments in its efforts and goals to provide low-income housing through the affordable housing programs, directing and managing all programs including the Public Housing Program, Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program, Moderate Rehabilitation Program, Continuum of Care and other Special Programs, as well as the Inspections Unit. Brandee has been with the agency since 2005 and holds a BBA in Accounting from the University of Texas at San Antonio and an MBA in Accounting/Finance from Our Lady of the Lake University.
Carlos VanNatter- Los Angeles Housing Authority- Carlos runs one of the largest Section 8 programs in the USA. For CY2015, HACLA paid more than $465 Million to private Landlords on behalf of more than 45,000 participating families. Running such a large program in such a political city is not easy. We will be interested to see where the program goes under Carlos’s leadership in the upcoming years.
Conclusion: Did we miss anyone? Please let us know of leaders in public housing and voucher programs that you would like to see us cover. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org