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Welcome to the 2015 Governor's Conference on Housing and Economic Development

For 20 years, the Governor's Conference on Housing and Economic Development has connected you with the the state's most influential industry professionals and this year's conference proves to be just as dynamic. As always, we will be filled to the brim with over 100 housing luminaries and economic development experts from every corner of the state who will provide the process insight and fresh perspective to your ongoing or upcoming project.

Richman, Charles A.
NJ Department of Community Affairs (DCA)

Charles A. Richman has worked at the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) for 29 years and has more than 40 years of experience in New Jersey state government.  Prior to joining the DCA in 1986, Commissioner Richman served as Executive Director of the NJ State Energy Office, Assistant Commissioner and then Acting Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Energy.  He was named Assistant Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs in 1986 and was promoted to Deputy Commissioner in 2005. He has held the title of Acting Commissioner at DCA three times, most recently from July 2009 to February 2010.  Throughout his DCA career, Mr. Richman has spearheaded effective policy development in areas ranging from affordable housing, fire safety, community planning and economic revitalization to budget development. He has been responsible for regulatory reform in a variety of building and housing codes, evaluations of municipal operations; formulation of legislative strategies; preparation of department budgets and priorities; contract management; and supervision of operating divisions.  Over the years he has also represented the Department on a number of prominent boards and commissions, including the Council on Affordable Housing; Casino Reinvestment Development Authority; the State Planning Commission, the NJ Historic Trust; and the Asbury Park Housing Authority among others. In the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, he helped lead efforts in providing Sandy-displaced families with housing options and in administering federal Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery funds to assist homeowners, renters and local governments in their Sandy recovery and rebuilding efforts.

Marchetta, Anthony L.
Executive Director
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Anthony L. Marchetta became the Executive Director of the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency in 2010 and has over 35 years of professional planning and development experience in the public and private sector.  Under his tenure, the Agency created new revenue generating programs, updated and reprioritized the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Qualified Allocation Plan, and implemented cost control measures and distressed asset management that are evident in improved Agency financial ratings and outlooks.  Prior to joining the Agency, Mr. Marchetta was vice president of LCOR Inc., where he developed multi-family and mixed-use projects within the Mid-Atlantic region. Most notably, he managed the development of Gaslight Commons, a 200-unit luxury rental project in the Transit Village of South Orange, NJ.  This project won the first New Jersey Future Smart Growth Award in 2002.  He also led the effort that resulted in LCOR’s designation as the Master Redeveloper of the New Jersey Transit Hoboken Terminal and Yard project.  Mr. Marchetta has also worked with other major developers such as Matrix Development Group and Baker Residential Inc.  In 2012, the Edward J Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy of Rutgers University named him the Alum of the Year.  Governor Whitman appointed Mr. Marchetta to serve on the New Jersey State Planning Commission in 1998.  Some of his many affiliations include the Regional Plan Association (RPA), The Urban Land Institute, and The National Association of Industrial and Office Parks (NAIOP). He received his undergraduate degree from Rutgers College, and two master’s degrees, one in City and Regional Planning and the other in Business Administration from Rutgers University.

Orsen, Melissa J.
Chief Executive Officer
New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA)

Melissa Orsen was appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) in February 2015. The EDA is an independent State agency responsible for providing financing to small and mid-sized businesses, administering tax incentives to retain and grow jobs, revitalizing communities through redevelopment initiatives, and supporting entrepreneurial development by providing access to training and mentoring programs.   Prior to becoming CEO of the EDA, Ms. Orsen served as the Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs (DCA), where she oversaw a budget of more than $3.8 billion and a workforce of approximately 400 employees. Before becoming Deputy Commissioner, she served as Chief of Staff to Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno, where she was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Lieutenant Governor's office and the New Jersey Department of State. Her work was focused on coordinating and implementing statewide economic growth and job creation strategies.  Ms. Orsen joined the Lieutenant Governor's staff in March 2012 from DCA, where she served in several key roles, including Chief of Staff to the Department and Chief Counsel for the New Jersey Council on Affordable Housing. Earlier in her professional career, she was a Deputy Attorney General for the State of New Jersey.  Ms. Orsen earned her Juris Doctor from Widener University School of Law and her bachelor's degree from the University of Delaware.

Abbott-Young, Mary Gay
Chief Executive Officer
Rescue Mission of Trenton

Mary Gay Abbott-Young has worked at the Rescue Mission of Trenton since 1978.  She has served as Executive Director since 1986 and as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) since 2000. As CEO she is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of a $4.2 million non-profit organization employing 50 individuals.  An active advocate for those in need, Ms. Abbott-Young serves on the boards of directors of the New Jersey Association of Mental Health & Addiction Agencies, the Mercer Alliance to End Homelessness, Trenton Health Team, and the New Jersey Coalition to End Homelessness. She sits on the Advisory Council of the Mercer County Workforce Investment Board and the City of Trenton/County of Mercer Continuum of Care Governance committee. Her awards include: Citizen of the Year from the Trenton Council of Civic Associations; the Women of Achievement Award from the YWCA of Trenton; and the YWCA of Princeton Tribute to Women. Ms. Abbott-Young has been featured in the Mercer Regional Chamber of Commerce Magazine, The Times of Trenton and The New York Times. She is currently working with the New Jersey Coalition to End Homelessness to address the statewide funding crisis for emergency services.

Arena, Michael CPA, MSTFP       
Financial Analyst Coordinator
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Michael Arena is a new addition to New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency and is currently serving in the role of a Financial Analyst Coordinator. Mr. Arena is a licensed CPA and holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a master’s in Taxation and Financial Planning from Widener University. He previously worked for BNY Mellon, PHH Corporation, and JP Morgan in various roles in the financial sector.

Bartlett, Lynn, M.A.S.
Executive Director
Housing Authority of Bergen County

Lynn Bartlett is the Executive Director for the Housing Authority of Bergen County, the fifth largest public housing authority in New Jersey.  In this capacity she provides direction to a workforce of 80 employees and is responsible for the day to day operation, budgeting, planning, reporting, procurement, contracting and compliance for all rental and supportive housing programs. These programs include 3,586 Housing Choice vouchers, 195 additional rental subsidies, 503 public housing units and 300 multi-family units with a total budget of $48 million. Additionally, Ms. Bartlett directs $1.186 million for the management of the Bergen County Housing, Health and Human Services Center, the county’s state of the art homeless shelter.  She has over 20 years of experience in affordable housing development and managing long term affordability controls for low to moderate income housing.  In addition she has been an adjunct Professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University in the New College of General and Continuing Education’s Community Development Certificate program. Ms. Bartlett earned her Certified Housing Development Finance Professional designation from The National Development Council and holds certification as a Low Income Housing Tax Credit Compliance Professional.  She holds a Bachelor of Science from the Pennsylvania State University and a Master of Administrative Science from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Battaglia, Jessica
Jardim, Meisner & Susser, P.C.

Jessica Battaglia is a partner with Jardim, Meisner & Susser, P.C. located in the firm's Florham Park, NJ, office. Ms. Battaglia serves as counsel to several New Jersey businesses and corporations, providing advice in the areas of real estate and corporate governance. She specializes in commercial and residential real estate, leasing and common interest community representation. Ms. Battaglia has represented parties in a wide variety of transactions and projects related to acquisition, disposition and development of real estate, including condominium/townhouse developments.  She has represented developers in the preparation and registration of Public Offering Statements with the Department of Community Affairs as well as Condominium Association and Homeowners Associations in the transition and management of its restricted covenants. 

Battis, Tracee
Director of Housing Development
Project Freedom, Inc.

Tracee Battis is Director of Housing Development for Project Freedom, Inc., a very successful nonprofit developer specializing in affordable, barrier-free housing. She was appointed to that post in February of 2012. Ms. Battis has over 40 years of experience working in the affordable housing industry. Prior to joining Project Freedom, Inc., Ms. Battis served for 35 years in various capacities at New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA). She served as NJHMFA Chief of Programs and as Assistant Executive Director at since 1993. In this role, she was in charge of all the housing programs, including the Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program, and the multifamily, single family and special needs financing programs. Ms. Battis received her MBA from Rider University and her undergraduate degree from the College of New Jersey.

Beczo, Kimberly
Occupancy Specialist Coordinator
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Kimberly Beczo is the Occupancy Specialist Coordinator for the Property Management Division and has been with New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency for over 20 years.  Her background includes experience in Section 8, 236, Tax Credit, and Assisted Living Housing.  She is an Accredited Residential Manager with IREM and holds a Tax Credit Certification.  Ms. Beczo is well-versed in the HUD 4350.3 Occupancy Handbook and the application of the regulations governing the processing and transmission of tenant certifications. As the Occupancy Specialist Coordinator, she oversees and approves all tenant selection policies for Agency-financed developments and works directly with the Assistant Director of Property Management in the day to day operation of the Occupancy Department.  

Billek, Marygrace
Human Services for the County of Mercer (NJ)

Marygrace Billek LCSW, LCADC is the Director of Human Services for the County of Mercer (NJ).  Ms. Billek holds a Master of Science in Social Work (MSSW) from Columbia University and received bachelor’s degrees in English and in Psychology from Rutgers University.  Ms. Billek began her career in 1986 as a residence counselor at SERV Centers of New Jersey where she learned the art of advocacy and the science of treatment for individuals suffering from mental health and substance disorders. She joined Mercer County in 2004 as the Deputy Director of Human Services and in 2006 she was appointed to the role of Director.  In this capacity Ms. Billek chairs and participates in a broad spectrum of over 30 boards and commissions, which allows her to bring an advocate’s voice as well as influence policy and practice on the state, county and local levels.  From her unique vantage point  overseeing the provision of services to at-risk youth, homeless individuals and families, the elderly and individuals with disabilities, Ms. Billek has built a career championing efforts to decrease the stigma associated with mental illness and substance abuse.  For the last 10 years she has worked closely with the Mercer Alliance to End Homelessness on a countywide implementation of Housing First and Rapid Rehousing.  She counts Mercer’s success in reducing homelessness as one of her greatest career achievements. 

Brogan, David H.
Executive Director and Executive Vice President of Government Affairs & Business Development
New Jersey Apartment Association (NJAA)

David Brogan is the Executive Director and Executive Vice President of Government Affairs and Business Development for the New Jersey Apartment Association (NJAA). He oversees all NJAA operations, ensuring the financial stability and growth of the organization, providing value to members, and overseeing and implementing all Government Affairs and Political Action Committee strategies. Prior to joining NJAA, Mr. Brogan was the First Vice President of Economic Development and Taxation for the New Jersey Business and Industry Association, which is the largest employer representative association in the nation. Mr. Brogan was responsible for representing the business community on legislation and regulations that impact corporate and individual taxation, economic development and the state’s programs that stimulate job creation, development, redevelopment, and site remediation. Mr. Brogan was honored as Middlesex County College’s 2014 Alumnus of the Year.  He also served in the U.S. Navy from 1985-1989 as an Antisubmarine Warfare Operator and U.S. Naval Rescue Swimmer.  He graduated from Rutgers College with a BA in Political Science.  

Brown, Amy
Director of Outreach & Advocacy, I Choose Home NJ
Office of the Ombudsman for the Institutionalized Elderly (OOIE)

Amy Brown, is Director of Outreach and Advocacy for I Choose Home NJ (ICHNJ) Office of the Ombudsman for the Institutionalized Elderly (OOIE). Ms. Brown is an advocate specializing in issues affecting institutionalized elders, including residents' rights, improper discharges and transfers, and end-of-life ethical conflicts. Before joining the ICH team in this position, she worked as a staff attorney in the Ombudsman's Office, advocating on behalf of residents seeking to assert their civil and human rights.

Buehler, Jef
Director, Office of Main Street New Jersey & Improvement District Programs
NJ Department of Community Affairs (DCA)

Jef Buehler has worked in the field of facilitating place- and asset-based change since 1989 in American centers of urban poverty, Latin American rural areas, and more than 50 communities throughout New Jersey, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, and California.  Currently he serves as the State Director of Main Street New Jersey & Improvement District Programs within New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) overseeing the delivery of, and providing technical assistance and training to, 46 local Main Street programs statewide. Mr. Buehler also provides downtown revitalization and Improvement District assistance and presentations to communities around the state; serves as the administrator of the DCA’s nationally-recognized NJ Downtown Institute; and manages the Downtown Business Improvement Zone Loan Fund.  Recently, he created and implemented the NJ350 Pop-Up Store Program, which won the 2015 Innovation on Main Street Award from the National Main Street Center.  Prior to joining Main Street New Jersey, Mr. Buehler was a community organizer and housing advocate in Camden, NJ and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Dominican Republic. 

Burbridge, Joseph
Technical Services Coordinator
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Joseph Burbridge is the Technical Services Coordinator for the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. He oversees all construction-related activities for the Agency’s multifamily housing complexes throughout the State of New Jersey. Mr. Burbridge brings 30 years of private sector experience and knowledge in the field of Construction Management to the Agency.

Burns-Maine, Erin
Senior Program Manager
Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH)

Erin Burns-Maine is Senior Program Manager with CSH, leading initiatives related to individuals involved in the criminal justice system and child welfare-involved youth and families. In this role, she provides technical assistance to the New Jersey Department of Children and Families on improving housing outcomes for vulnerable families and youth aging out of the child welfare system. She also manages the implementation of the Family Reentry Pilot Program with the New York City Housing Authority. Ms. Burns-Maine’s previous experience includes working with the Women’s Housing and Economic Development Corporation and the Central Massachusetts Housing Alliance. She earned a master’s degree in Community Development and Planning from Clark University and recently completed the Fellowship for Emerging Leaders in Public Service through NYU Wagner.

Cadik, Emily
Director, Public Policy
Enterprise Community Partners, Inc.

Emily Cadik is Director of Public Policy at Enterprise Community Partners, where she leads policy and advocacy related to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, New Markets Tax Credit, Rental Assistance Demonstration and rental assistance program reforms. Prior to joining Enterprise in 2012, she was a Presidential Management Fellow at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, where she served as a program coordinator for the Moving to Work demonstration and in the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. She earned a master’s degree in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin.

Cantor, Joel C., ScD
Distinguished Professor of Public Policy and Founding Director
Center for State Health Policy at Rutgers University

Joel Cantor is a Distinguished Professor of Public Policy and the founding Director of theCenter for State Health Policy at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey.   Established in 1999, the Center is a leader in health policy research and development nationally, with a special focus on informing policy in New Jersey.  Dr. Cantor is widely published in the health services and policy literature arena on innovations in health service delivery and the regulation of private health insurance markets.  He serves frequently as an advisor on health policy matters to New Jersey state government, and was the 2006 recipient of the Rutgers University President's Award for Research in Service to New Jersey.  Dr. Cantor is currently working with the Office of the Governor and state agencies to develop and test delivery system reforms in New Jersey under a major grant from the federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovations.  Prior to joining Rutgers in 1999, Dr. Cantor served as director of research at the United Hospital Fund of New York and director of evaluation research at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.  He received his doctorate in health policy and management from the Johns Hopkins University, School of Public Health in 1988, and was elected a Fellow of Academy Health in 1996.

Ceppi, Paul
Director of Business Banking & Community Development
New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA)

Paul Ceppi is the Director of Business Banking and Community Development at the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA). In this role, he oversees the Community Development team whose primary focus is working on the incentive programs created as a result of the Economic Opportunity Act of 2013.  These programs encourage private investment and job growth in some of the most distressed areas of New Jersey.  Mr. Ceppi also manages the Business Banking team, which works closely with commercial lenders in forming partnerships to assist New Jersey businesses in obtaining the capital needed to expand their businesses.  Prior to joining the EDA in 2007, Mr. Ceppi was employed by the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, where he assisted developers and sponsors in obtaining financing to construct more than 4,000 units of affordable housing.  He is a member of the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority Housing Committee.

Cipollone, Sandra E.
Senior Vice President
Interstate Realty Management

Sandra E. Cipollone is Senior Vice President of Interstate Realty Management, with lead responsibility for more than 5,400 units across 60 communities. Additionally, she oversees four Regional Property Managers. Her portfolio includes major HOPE VI developments, including the award-winning Belmont Estates in Tampa, Florida, as well as tax credit and Section 8 project based housing.  Ms. Cipollone has over 35 years of experience in real estate accounting and property management. Prior to joining Interstate Realty Management in 1983, Ms. Cipollone was a Senior Accountant with Shore, Avrach & Company, Certified Public Accountants, specializing in real estate accounting.  She has conducted Fair Housing training on a national level for a major trade organization. Ms. Cipollone is very active in the local New Jersey IREM chapter, and is a two-time past president.  Ms. Cipollone currently holds the office of President for the New Jersey Affordable Housing Managers Association (JAHMA).  She holds a Master of Business Administration from Rutgers University. Ms. Cipollone is also a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Property Manager, and holds a Specialist in Housing Credit Management Certification.

Connelly, Dennis J.
Borough of Eatontown

Dennis J. Connelly began serving his first term as Mayor of the Borough of Eatontown in January 2015. Prior to being elected Mayor, he served two terms on the Eatontown Borough Council as a councilman and most recently as council president. During his tenure in these roles, Mr. Connelly served as the Police Commissioner, Chairman of the Police, Public Lights and Tenants Rights Committee, member of the Finance and Ordinance Committee, member of the Public Works and Welfare Committee, and council liaison to the Traffic Advisory Committee, Emergency Management/Auxiliary Police Committee, and Alcohol and Drug Alliance Committee.  Public service has always been important to Mr. Connelly’s family. He is a third generation retired police officer. He proudly served 25 years with the Eatontown Police Department and retired in 2007. Keeping Eatontown’s young people safe and free from the dangers of drugs, alcohol and gang involvement have always been one of Mr. Connelly’s top priorities. He served as the Police Community Service, DARE and the Eatontown Schools Resource Officer. Mr. Connelly was the advisor to the Eatontown Police Explorers Post 1311 and the Eatontown Youth Committee.

Decker, James, J.
CPA, Partner
WithumSmith + Brown, PC

James Decker is a partner with WithumSmith + Brown, PC, based in the firm’s New Brunswick, NJ, office and is a licensed certified public accountant in the State of New Jersey. He has more than 30 years of professional accounting experience assisting closely-held businesses in a variety of industries in addition to a high concentration of not-for-profit organizations and real estate entities. A graduate of the University of Scranton with a BS in accounting, Mr. Decker joined Withum in 1985. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants. He serves as vice chair of the Ronald McDonald Houses – New Brunswick and Long Branch in addition to treasurer of the Kilgore Foundation and as an advisory board member of the Bank of Princeton.

DeLosSantos, Pam
Staff Architect and Green Technical Advisor
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Pam DeLosSantos, AIA, LEED AP BD+C oversees the architectural review of Supportive Housing projects and is responsible for the review of sustainability and energy efficiency measures for multifamily housing projects at the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. She helped create the Special Needs Design Checklist for Special Needs Trust Fund-financed projects.  She works in collaboration with Multifamily and Special Needs professionals to improve the design and sustainability of the state’s affordable housing stock.  She has over 20 years’ experience in the architecture and housing fields.  Ms. DeLosSantos is a graduate of Rutgers College, New Brunswick and Pratt Institute, New York.  She is a licensed New Jersey architect, a member of the American Institute of Architects and a LEED Accredited Professional with a concentration in Building Design and Construction. Ms. DeLosSantos is dedicated to promoting accessibility features in affordable housing projects, and strives to make those projects as sustainable and energy efficient as possible.

De Santis, Deborah
President and Chief Executive Officer
Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH)

Deborah De Santis is President and Chief Executive Officer for the Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH). She is responsible for the overall leadership of CSH, including oversight of fund development, public policy and advocacy work, financial and administrative systems, program planning and implementation, and strategic planning. Under her leadership, CSH advances solutions that use housing as a platform for services to improve the lives of the most vulnerable people, maximize public resources and build healthy communities. Appointed to the position in 2007, Ms. De Santis has led CSH in realizing a 10-year goal of creating 150,000 supportive housing units nationally. She also led the reorganization of CSH to deepen its focus on innovation and expansion into new high-need communities across the nation that align with CSH’s strategic priorities. Prior to this appointment, Ms. De Santis served CSH for nearly four years as the director of the New Jersey program, where she tripled CSH’s lending portfolio and successfully advocated for the creation of New Jersey’s $200 million Special Needs Housing Trust Fund. Previously, Ms. De Santis was the Executive Director and COO of the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, where she oversaw the execution of its first strategic plan which included developing new special needs housing programs, increasing investments in New Jersey's urban areas, streamlining loan servicing, and growing the agency's multi-family portfolio. Ms. De Santis also served as Deputy Chief of Staff for the Governor of New Jersey, where she oversaw the day-to-day operations of the Governor's office, and served as liaison to the Cabinet. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Babson College where she is on the Board of Trustees.

Desiderio, Michelle
Vice President, Innovation Services
Home Innovation Research Labs

Michelle Desiderio is Vice President, Innovation Services for Home Innovation Labs, a firm that helps clients improve the quality, durability, affordability, and environmental performance of homes and home building products. Ms. Desiderio works with builders, architects, remodelers, and other housing professionals to remove barriers to innovation by leveraging Home Innovation’s unparalleled knowledge and experience in market analysis and building science research. She oversees NGBS Green, the certification program based on the National Green Building Standard. The program certifies new and remodeled residential buildings and communities of all sizes and has transformed the market for green certified homes. Ms. Desiderio’s work has focused on market-based solutions that solve environmental issues without compromising housing affordability. She developed Fannie Mae’s Smart Commute Mortgage, revamped the Energy Efficient Mortgage, and developed a methodology to calculate the carbon reduction from efficient homes so that they could be sold on the emerging greenhouse gas market. Ms. Desiderio has a master’s in Urban Planning and Environmental Studies from the University of Virginia and a BS in Environmental Studies from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.

DiFabio, Anthony
President and Chief Executive Officer
Robins’ Nest Inc.

Dr. Anthony DiFabio is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Robins’ Nest Inc., a not-for-profit corporation that provides human and social service programming throughout southern New Jersey. Since being named CEO in 2007, Dr. DiFabio has helped Robins' Nest grow into one of New Jersey’s largest and most well respected not-for-profit businesses offering over 60 programs and services to more than 10,000 residents annually.  Robins’ Nest’s 350 staff members operate from 20 commercial and residential locations throughout southern New Jersey. Dr. DiFabio’s leadership success has distinguished him as a leader at the state and county levels. He serves on a number of boards including the New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies, New Jersey Alliance for Children, Youth and Families, Nonprofit Development Center of Southern New Jersey, South Jersey Federal Credit Union, and Gloucester County Chamber of Commerce.  In addition, he is an Advisory Board member of SNJ Business People, Vice Chair of the Harrison Joint Land Use Board and sits on numerous county and regional committees.  At the national level, Dr. DiFabio is an active member of the Mental Health Corporations of America and the Alliance for Children and Families and is a national consultant for FEI Behavioral. Dr. DiFabio has received a number of awards and recognitions.  He received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Loyola College of Maryland, Master of Arts in Clinical Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University, and Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Vanderbilt University.   

Florio, Robin
Senior Administrative Analyst
Ocean County Planning Department

Robin Florio has worked for the Ocean County Planning Department for the last 21 years. She is responsible for providing leadership, oversight and strategic direction for management and coordination of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant and HOME Investment Partnership programs. She ensures that programs maintain up-to-date policies and procedures, consistent with federal and state regulations. Ms. Florio also oversees the administration and fiscal management of grant funds and coordinates with qualified community housing development organizations to facilitate development of affordable rental housing in Ocean County.  In addition, she manages the county’s First Time Homebuyers program. Ms. Florio has extensive experience with the tenant- based rental assistance program, housing rehabilitation, and program development. She is proficient in working with the HUD Integrated Disbursement and Information System, which collects and compiles data, generates reports and serves as the mechanism to request funds from the US Treasury. She also serves as the Fair Housing Officer for Ocean County.

Garrett, Tyrone
Long Branch Housing Authority

Tyrone Garrett, J.D., is the Executive Director of the Long Branch Housing Authority (LBHA), Maestro Community Development Corporation (CDC) and Shore Point M & M, with oversight responsibilities for the Asbury Park and Red Bank Authorities. Formed in 2003, Maestro CDC, in conjunction with LBHA and its development partners, was instrumental in leveraging a HOPE VI Grant, and awards from New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, Low Income Housing Tax Credits, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York (FHLBNY) and NJ Council on Affordable Housing, totaling $183 million. These funds built 605 mixed income rental and homeownership units to go along with a Historic School rehabilitation of 116 senior units using $29.2 million in Historic Tax Credits. Currently, Maestro CDC is participating in three Rental Assistance Demonstration projects in New Jersey and Illinois. Mr. Garrett is a trustee with Public Housing Authorities Directors Association and sits on the Advisory Board of FHLBNY and corporate boards of HAI Group, Monmouth Medical and Beacon Health. He has authored presentations on "Leveraging Funding for Redevelopment" and "New Reality of Public Housing." In addition, he serves as an instructor for Rutgers University’s Center for Government Services. Mr. Garrett is a proud graduate of the University of Virginia and Rutgers University Law School.

Germano, Dante
Chief Operating Officer/Chief Financial Officer
Nexus Properties

Dante Germano joined Nexus Properties, a real estate development and management company located in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, in 1990 as Chief Financial Officer. He became Chief Operating Officer in 2002.  Mr. Germano has been involved in real estate development and management for over 30 years.  He previously held positions at LCOR, a national real estate developer, and KPMG, an international accounting firm.  Mr. Germano is a member of the board of trustees of the Inspira Health Network where he serves as treasurer and chair of the Finance Committee. He also holds membership on the board of trustees at Robins’ Nest Inc., a children’s services agency in South Jersey; the Deans Advisory Council for the School of Business at The College of New Jersey; and the board of trustees at Glassboro Partners, Inc., a non-profit focused on developing a Town Square and arts/entertainment district in the Borough of Glassboro.  He is also a member of the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants.  He graduated from Fairleigh Dickinson University in 1981 with a BS in Accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant.  He completed his MBA at the MIT Sloan School of Management. 

Gore, Gia
Director of Real Estate
Eden Autism Services

Gia Gore is the Director of Real Estate for Eden Autism Services, a not-for-profit organization with a mission to improve the lives of children and adults with autism. Ms. Gore is responsible for managing and overseeing the real estate activities of the organization including leasing, site selection, selling, buying, market research, financial analysis and establishing and maintaining companywide real estate standards and policies. She manages of a diverse range of real estate and facilities projects from development through stabilization. Ms. Gore has extensive experience in developing special needs projects for individuals with developmental disabilities.  Prior to joining Eden, she spent 13 years at Our House Inc. as Director of Real Estate.

Grasso, Jarrod C.
Chief Executive Officer
NJ Realtors®

Jarrod C. Grasso leads NJ Realtors® as Chief Executive Officer in its mission to serve the professional needs of its members, develop programs and services to conduct business successfully and ethically, and advocate for private property rights and the real estate industry. Mr. Grasso joined the association in 1999 and was promoted to vice president of government affairs in 2002. For nine years, he served as NJ Realtors®’ chief lobbyist before assuming his current role. Mr. Grasso earned a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University in 2004. In 2006, he was honored by the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) with its Certified Executive designation, which recognizes specialized industry knowledge and achievements. In addition to his work in New Jersey, Mr. Grasso has maintained an active role on the national association level. In 2013, he was inducted into the NAR Association Executives Committee’s Dr. Almon R.“Bud” Smith Leadership Society. He served as NAR Director and Chair of the Association Executives Committee in 2015.  Currently, he serves as vice chair of the full hospital board at Robert Wood Johnson Barnabas Health and is a member of the Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide Board. In 2015, the Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey recognized Mr. Grasso with the Good Guy Award for his leadership in advancing policies in support of women and families. He is a past winner of the annual “Forty Under 40” award program hosted by business publication, NJBIZ.

Hamlin, Anne H.
Director of Tax Credit Services
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Anne Hamlin has been with the Tax Credit Services Division at New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency since 2008.  As Director of Tax Credit Allocations, she is responsible for the day-to-day responsibilities associated with administering the 4% and 9% Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program for the State of New Jersey on behalf of the Internal Revenue Service.  Ms. Hamlin has over 12 years of experience in the affordable multifamily housing industry and has a B.A. in Political Science. 

Hassett, Maureen
Senior Vice President, Governance and Communications and Strategic Initiatives
New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA)

Maureen Hassett serves as Senior Vice President of Governance, Communications and Strategic Initiatives for the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA). In this role, she oversees the EDA’s Edison Innovation Fund technology investments, Governance & Communications and Marketing & Product divisions, as well as its urban and real estate development portfolio in New Jersey.  She joined the EDA in January 2002 as Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and also held the position of Senior Vice President of Governance and Communications for five years overseeing corporate governance, strategic planning, marketing and communications, and legislative affairs.  From 2012-2015, as Senior Vice President, Finance and Development, she led the Business Development, Underwriting, Closing Services and Portfolio Services teams in advancing all credit lending and incentive transactions on behalf of the Authority. Prior to joining the EDA, she served as Senior Policy Advisor at the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs and worked for several municipalities in New York and New Jersey in program financing and housing development.  Ms. Hassett holds a Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College and a master’s in Urban Planning from Hunter College, City University of New York. She is a resident of Pennington, NJ.

Henkel, Tim
Senior Vice President and Principal
Pennrose Properties, LLC

Tim Henkel is Senior Vice President and Principal of Pennrose Properties, LLC.  He began his career at Pennrose in 1999 and currently coordinates all aspects of the development process, including property acquisition, development financing, and land development approvals.  Mr. Henkel is an expert in all forms of public and private real estate financing and has executed the full array of Pennrose’s diverse portfolio of transactions including affordable housing via Low Income Housing Tax Credits, Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits, mixed-income multifamily housing via tax-exempt bonds, and public housing replacement leveraging federal HOPE VI grants. In addition, he has executed market rate and mixed income development using various combinations of New Market Tax Credits and various state tax credit financing tools.  Mr. Henkel’s current activities are focused on the New Jersey, New York and Connecticut regions.  He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Bucknell University and a Master of Business Administration from the William E. Simon School of Business Administration at the University of Rochester. He is a professional engineer licensed in the State of New Jersey. Mr. Henkel is President of the recently formed New Jersey Affordable Housing Developers Council.  He also serves on the board of Triple C Housing and Preservation New Jersey and is a frequent panelist and speaker at regional real estate development events.

Hoffman, Deborah
Director, Division of Economic Development
Passaic County

Deborah Hoffman is the Director of the Division of Economic Development for Passaic County.  In this role she provides direct technical support and assistance to companies seeking to relocate to, or expand in, Passaic County.  Since 2000, Ms. Hoffman has secured over $1.6 billion in financing and incentives for Passaic County companies; held 84 business seminars and secured grants totaling $21,557,429. In addition, she developed a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for the county, promoted the redevelopment of brownfield sites through a $400,000 grant from the US Environmental Protection Agency and is responsible for the activities of the Passaic County Brownfields Commission. Ms. Hoffman overseas the Passaic County Film Commission and manages the Passaic County CDBG Program and the $11.8 million CDBG Disaster Recovery Program. She possesses a master’s degree in Urban Planning and a Bachelor of Arts from New York University.  She is vice president of Downtown New Jersey and treasurer of Memorial Day Nursery. She holds board membership on the Regional Plan Association of New Jersey, the Passaic County Community College Foundation, and the Advisory Board of Paterson Habitat for Humanity.

Houshmand, Dr. Ali
Rowan University

Dr. Ali A. Houshmand became the seventh president of Rowan University in June 2012 following approximately six years serving the school as provost/senior vice president of Academic Affairs, CEO and interim president. He leads the institution during an unprecedented time of opportunity and growth. Dr. Houshmand was at Rowan’s helm when the university opened Cooper Medical School of Rowan University (CMSRU). Founded in conjunction with Cooper University Health Care in the summer of 2012, CMSRU was the first new M.D. program in New Jersey in more than 35 years. Dr. Houshmand was also leading Rowan University when the 2012 New Jersey Medical and Health Sciences Education Restructuring Act went into effect July 1, 2013. Rowan was granted research institution status by the state through that act, which also integrated the university with the School of Osteopathic Medicine in Stratford, N.J. and partnered Rowan with Rutgers-Camden to create a College of Health Sciences in Camden. Born in Iran, Dr. Houshmand earned his bachelor’s (with honors) and master’s degrees in mathematics and mathematical statistics from the University of Essex, United Kingdom. He earned a second master’s degree and a doctoral degree in industrial and operations engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. The president is widely published in technical, business and academic fields, and he has received numerous competitive research grants and contracts throughout his career.

Humowiecki, Mark
General Counsel and Director of External Affairs
Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers

Mark Humowiecki is General Counsel and Director of External Affairs for the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers. The Camden Coalition strives to improve the quality, accessibility, coordination, and efficiency of the healthcare system in Camden, NJ and throughout the country by focusing on fixing the system for high cost, high need individuals. Mr. Humowiecki leads the Coalition’s communication, stakeholder relations, legal, and policy work. He has been instrumental in the development of a high fidelity Housing First program that serves individuals who are homeless and medically frail.  Prior to joining the Coalition, he served in senior policy positions in New York state government and spent six years as a civil litigator in New York City.  He is a graduate of Yale College and Yale Law School.

Jackson, Rosie
Assistant Director of Property Management
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Rosie Jackson is the Assistant Director of Property Management and has been with New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency for 32 years.  She is responsible for supervising the Occupancy Specialists working in the Property Management division.  Ms. Jackson oversees the Agency’s portfolio of developments in relationship to TRACS and occupancy requirements.  She has extensive experience in the housing industry, including assisted housing and property management, and currently holds the designations of Certified Assisted Housing Manager (AHM), Tax Credit Specialist (TCS), Housing Credit Certified Professional (HCCP), C6P and NCP-Executive.  In 2010, Ms. Jackson was inducted into the HFA Hall of Fame in recognition of 20 or more years of service in the housing credit industry.

Jensen, Jon
Sustainability Director
MaGrann Associates

Jon Jensen, Sustainability Director at MaGrann Associates, serves as a technical consultant to developers, design teams and builders who want to build truly green homes. He guides them through programs including LEED for Homes, Green Communities, the National Green Building Standard, and Energy Star.  Mr. Jensen is thrilled to work with builders of large and small projects to help squeeze the maximum possible green performance out of their budget. His  construction education background enables him to effectively explain complicated building science and construction process concepts that drive the requirements for these programs. Comfortable working with developers and architects as well as site superintendents and subcontractors, Mr. Jensen seeks to demystify green building for all of his clients.

Johnson, Richard F.X.
Senior Vice President – Development, Partner

Richard F.X. Johnson joined Matrix in 1990, and is currently the partner-in-charge of the development of office and mixed‑use projects within the Matrix portfolio. His particular focus is on transit-oriented and urban development/redevelopment opportunities in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Throughout his tenure with Matrix, Mr. Johnson has directed the company's involvement in some of the region's most challenging urban mixed-use developments and significant build-to-suit corporate campuses. These include the Matrix Newark Riverfront Center project, spanning nearly 900,000 square feet of office space, 800 to 1,000 residential units, a 1,100 space parking structure and support retail; the 1.5 million square foot, multi-phase $350 million headquarters of RCN Corporation in Lawrenceville, NJ (now owned by Bristol Myers Squibb); the 435,000 square foot, $40 million consolidated North American headquarters of Okidata in Mount Laurel, NJ; the 300,000 square foot, $65 million four-phase Advanta Corporation Campus in Horsham, PA; the 486,000 square foot, $75 million headquarters for General Instrument Corporation (now Motorola) in Horsham, PA; and the 475,000 square foot, $65 million headquarters for Cendant Mortgage in Mount Laurel, NJ.  Mr. Johnson also has extensive experience in development consulting and with sustainable design processes, specifically the use of renewable energy solutions in warehouse/distribution center buildings. He earned his Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Notre Dame, and a Master of Business Administration, Real Estate Finance, from The Wharton School of Pennsylvania. 

Kohles, Gary
Finance Officer and IDIS Administrator
Bergen County’s Division of Community Development

Gary Kohles is the Finance Officer and IDIS Administrator for Bergen County’s Division of Community Development.  Mr. Kohles has been with the Division for over 20 years and is well versed in both CDBG and HOME grant programs. As Bergen’s IDIS administrator, he has extensive experience in all IDIS functionality including activity set up and completion, drawdown creation/approval, as well as the preparation and submission of Bergen County’s 5 Year Consolidated Plan, annual Action Plan and CAPER.  Bergen County was one of the first PJ’s in New Jersey to go live when IDIS was introduced in the mid 1990s and receives over $10 million in HUD entitlement funds annually.  Mr. Kohles is a graduate of Rutgers University and currently resides in Wayne, NJ with his wife and two children.

Lawrence, Wendy
TRACS Coordinator
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Wendy Lawrence has worked in the field of subsidized housing for the past 29 years, both in the property management department of a Section 8 development and as an Occupancy Specialist in the Property Management Division of the New Jersey Housing Mortgage Finance Agency.  She is a Certified Assisted Housing Manager through Quadel Consulting Corp. since 1988 and has earned numerous credits through the National Registry of CPE Sponsors.  Ms. Lawrence has been overseeing the Agency’s database and monitoring the implementation and coordination of TRACS tenant and voucher transmissions to NJHMFA and HUD since 1995. She was designated TRACS Coordinator in August 1997. Ms. Lawrence has served as one of the Agency’s coordinators on HUD’s Secure Connection and EIV since inception.  She attends all HUD TRACS industry meetings as well as other related trainings and meetings and is the liaison between HUD Washington, NJHMFA, software technicians, and property managers.

Lefler, Lesley
TRACS Coordinator
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Lesley Lefler is a TRACS Coordinator for the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency’s Property Management Division and has been with the Agency for over 11 years.  Prior to her NJHMFA career, she worked as an on-site manager for 10 years. Her background includes Section 8, 236, Tax Credit, and Assisted Living Housing. Ms. Lefler holds certifications in Tax Credit Compliance, Fair Housing, CPO through NAHMA and Assistant Housing Manager through Quadel.

Lewis, Terre
Project Director, I Choose Home New Jersey
Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD),
Department of Human Services (DHS)

Terre Lewis joined I Choose Home New Jersey (ICHNJ), as Project Director in the fall of 2010.  The ICHNJ program, known at the federal level as the Money Follows the Person Demonstration Project, is a collaborative effort between the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, the NJ Department of Human Services and the Office of the Ombudsman for the Institutionalized Elderly. The ICHNJ Program transitions older adults and individuals with disabilities from institutional settings to the community with the services and supports they need to thrive.  Employed by the Division of Developmental Disabilities for 13 years, Ms. Lewis has worked in the Social Services field for over 20 years supporting individuals with disabilities on their journey to independence and self-sufficiency through person-centered planning and personal choice.

Linsley, Patricia M.
Neral, & Company, PA

Patricia M. Linsley CPA is a shareholder and the Audit Partner at Neral & Company, PA. She holds a BS in accounting from Georgian Court University and is a certified public accountant in New Jersey and New York. She joined the firm in 1993 and is active in many professional organizations including the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants’ Non-profit Interest Group. Prior to joining Neral & Company, she spent eight years with Coopers & Lybrand, an international accounting firm, in their audit department. Ms. Linsley has a wide range of experience in nonprofit organizations, single audits, governmental, HUD and assisted living organizations.

Lizura, Timothy
President and Chief Operating Officer
New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA)

Timothy Lizura serves as President and Chief Operating Officer of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA).  Mr. Lizura joined the EDA in 1996 as part of the Authority’s real estate development team. He held various leadership roles, eventually assuming the position of Senior Vice President of Finance and Development, managing the Authority’s business practices and financing activities.  Mr. Lizura became President and COO in 2012.  For the EDA, Mr. Lizura has served as a member of the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Planning Authority and as a designee to the South Jersey Transportation Authority.  In addition, he served as the interim Executive Director for the Fort Monmouth Economic Redevelopment Authority during its formation in 2010.   He is currently a board member of NJ NAIOP and sits on the Advisory Board for Rutgers Business School.  In 2006, Mr. Lizura took a two-year stint at the Port Authority of NY & NJ, where he served as Director of the World Trade Center Redevelopment Department, overseeing all redevelopment activities for the commercial interests of the World Trade Center site in lower Manhattan.  Mr. Lizura also previously spent four years with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) during one of the most turbulent periods in banking history.  His responsibilities ranged from leading bank seizure teams to overseeing loan portfolio sales.   Mr. Lizura has served as chairman of the New Jersey Biotechnology & Life Sciences Coalition, and in 2006 was named one of NJBIZ Magazine’s “40 Under 40,” an award that honors men and women who have made headlines in their field and share a commitment to business growth, professional excellence and the community.  Mr. Lizura obtained a B.A. from Rutgers University, with a major in Economics and minor in Accounting. He also earned his M.B.A from the Rutgers Graduate School of Management.

Lockett, Nicole
Managing Director, Development
Genesis Companies

Nicole Lockett is the Managing Director of the New York City-based Genesis Companies, one of the city’s most successful minority-owned developers of low- and moderate-income housing.  The firm has completed award-winning affordable housing developments in northern and central New Jersey and was recognized by NJ Biz with its Green Leadership Award and the Urban Redevelopment Award from the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority, among others. In her role as Managing Director of Development, Ms. Lockett participates in all aspects of the company’s development activities. A specialist in creating multi-layered, complex financing transactions, she has executed projects with highly technical financing structures with the Genesis team. Ms. Lockett joined Genesis after working with Philadelphia-based developer Pennrose Properties, LLC. Prior to that position, she was the Senior Business Manager for the Development department of the Philadelphia Housing Authority. She has provided her expertise to lenders, non-profits, and municipalities on various housing related issues in numerous states across the country and Puerto Rico.  Ms. Lockett earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Rice University and a Master of Science in Real Estate Development from Columbia University. 

Lombardo, Daniel L.
President and CEO
Volunteers of America Delaware Valley

Daniel L. Lombardo is the President and CEO of Volunteers of America Delaware Valley. He has shepherded the transformation of the organization from Chapter 11 status into a thriving $35 million operation.  He has been active with numerous professional and community organizations and has served in a number of public policy capacities in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.  Mr. Lombardo was appointed by the Governor of New Jersey to the first-ever New Jersey Sentencing Policy Study Commission; was appointed by the Mayor of Philadelphia to a mayoral Task Force on Management and Productivity; and was chosen by the Governor of New Jersey to serve as a member of the New Jersey Family Development Advisory Board and the New Jersey Parole Advisory Board.  He was elected Chairman of the New Jersey Parole Advisory Board and has served on numerous task forces and commissions.  Mr. Lombardo is a native of Pittsburgh, a graduate of Point Park University and completed his graduate work at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Malnak, Sheri
Administrator, Housing Assistance Programs
NJ Department of Community Affairs (DCA)

Sheri Malnak works for the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ Division of Housing and Community Resources.  She is responsible for the administration of the following housing programs that encompass a total budget of over $100 million: Family Self-Sufficiency Program; Homelessness Prevention Program; Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program; HOME Tenant-Based Rental Assistance Program; Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDs Program; Sandy Landlord Incentive Program; Sandy Tenant-Based Rental Assistance Program; Section 8 Homeownership Program; Shelter Plus Care Program; Shelter Support Program; and the State Rental Assistance Program.  Ms. Malnak holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Delaware.

Manganello Ellis, Gayle
Senior Vice President, Manager of Origination/Tax Credit Capital Group
PNC Bank, NA

Gayle Manganello Ellis is Senior Vice President, Manager of Origination for the Tax Credit Capital Group at PNC Bank, NA. She has been with PNC for 16 years. Ms. Manganello is responsible for overseeing PNC’s national platform involving the origination of equity and debt opportunities in low income housing tax credit developments. The Origination group has 10 offices located throughout the U.S. Ms. Manganello has worked in the affordable housing industry for 26 years, focusing exclusively on structuring investments.  She has participated in numerous industry panels and organizations including Connecticut Housing Coalition, Citizens Housing and Planning Association, New England Women in Real Estate, Institute for Responsible Housing Preservation and Women in Housing and Finance. She is also a former board member for New York State Association for Affordable Housing. Ms. Manganello earned a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from Boston College.

Mascherin, Marie
Chief Lending Officer
New Jersey Community Capital (NJCC)

Marie Mascherin joined New Jersey Community Capital (NJCC) as Chief Lending Officer in 2008. She is responsible for managing, developing, maintaining, and administering all of NJCC’s loan and investment programs and lending strategies. Her primary duties include managing production goals, new product development, borrower relationships, budgeting, portfolio performance, and problem loans. Ms. Mascherin brings to this position over 30 years of commercial banking and real estate mortgage lending experience, including five years as vice president of FHA lending at Capmark Finance Inc. (formerly GMAC Commercial Mortgage), where she was responsible for management of the regional loan production office specializing in FHA-insured multifamily and senior housing lending She also spent more than 10 years at Midlantic National Bank, where she rose to the position of vice-president, team leader, in the Real Estate Lending Group. Ms. Mascherin holds a Master of Business Administration from New York University’s Stern School of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Seton Hall University.

McDonald, Timothy
Registered Architect, LEED AP, Certified
Passive Housing Consultant and Tradesman and President Of Onion Flats LLC

Timothy McDonald is a Registered Architect in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, LEED AP, Certified Passive House Consultant and Tradesman (CPHC). He is also President of Onion Flats LLC, an award winning development/design/build collective centered in Philadelphia.  Mr. McDonald has been teaching and practicing for over 20 years with a focus on community development, multidisciplinary thinking and making high-performance building technologies and alternative construction methodologies. Through his research and practice, he, along with his partners at Onion Flats, has developed, designed and built some of the first LEED Gold and Platinum projects in the country and the First Certified Passive House, Net-Zero-Energy-Capable project in Pennsylvania.

Merced, Edward
Senior Regional Property Manager
RPM Development Group

Edward Merced joined RPM Development’s Management Company in 2005.  He is the Senior Property Manager for the entire RPM Development portfolio. In addition to overseeing all of RPM's properties in Somerset, NJ, he is responsible for training new superintendents, supervising all site inspections portfolio-wide, visiting properties, reviewing and assisting on capital improvement bid packages, and coordinating with the director of Property Management on day-to-day building operations. Mr. Merced can be found anywhere an RPM property is located making sure that the RPM standards for excellence are being exceeded. 

Miller, Kristin
Corporation of Supportive Housing Metro Region Program

Kristin Miller is Director of the Corporation of Supportive Housing Metro Region Program. Her work focuses on innovation and expanding access to supportive housing for the most vulnerable and high-need individuals and families across New York City and State, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. This includes focused engagement around health reform, families, reentry, veterans, addiction and transition age youth.  All of these issues require Ms. Miller’s focus on ending housing insecurity and instability; reforming public systems; working closely with government and other stakeholders to integrate Medicaid/health care and supportive housing; increasing access to supportive housing for those with special needs; and promoting the use of Social Impact Financing in supportive housing.  Ms. Miller has almost 25 years of experience working in housing programs sponsored by government and non-profit organizations in the region.  Most recently, Ms. Miller had been consulting with dozens of non-profits focusing on housing, reentry, mental health, children’s and employment services. Ms. Miller holds a master’s degree in Social Work from Hunter College in New York City and a bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Augsburg College in Minneapolis, MN.

Moore, Lauren H.
Executive Director, New Jersey Business Action Center (BAC)
New Jersey Department of State

Lauren H. Moore is the Executive Director of the New Jersey Business Action Center (BAC).  Housed within the New Jersey Department of State and reporting to the Lieutenant Governor, the BAC’s core mission is to help create and retain jobs while encouraging private capital investment in the Garden State. In his role at the BAC, Mr. Moore oversees the Office of Business Advocacy, the Office of Planning Advocacy, and the Office of International Business Development and Protocol. The wide-ranging responsibilities of these units include:  coordinating state, local, and federal business assistance and incentive programs; providing commercial real estate site selection services; guiding companies on regulatory and permitting matters; developing land use strategies to promote sustainability and economic growth; and encouraging foreign-based firms to invest in New Jersey. Mr. Moore has more than 25 years of professional experience in numerous management positions in government.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from Richard Stockton College and is a licensed New Jersey professional planner and member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP).

Moore, Randi
Division Chief
County of Hudson, Division of Housing and Community Development 

Randi Moore leads the Division of Housing and Community Development (HCD) for the County of Hudson.  In this role she is responsible for administering federal grants from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for community development, affordable housing and homeless programs. HCD also leads the Hudson County Alliance to End Homelessness and serves as the lead applicant to HUD for Continuum of Care (CoC) homeless assistance funding.  In her time with the county, Ms. Moore has spearheaded new initiatives and implemented innovative programs to improve the way housing and services are provided to homeless individuals and families. She has over 10 years of experience working with the homeless and related organizations in New Jersey.  Prior to joining the County of Hudson she worked in the non-profit sector at organizations focused on affordable housing and homeless issues.

Murray, John M.
Chief of Credit and Business Development
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

As Credit and Business Development Chief, John Murray is responsible for all multifamily credit decisions. He also develops workout plans for distressed properties and works closely on the Agency’s Sandy Recovery programs. Prior to his current position he was the Director of Multifamily Preservation. Under Mr. Murray’s leadership since 2004, NJHMFA has preserved 7,462 units, extending the affordability of 45 projects an average of 20 years for a total of $356,420,317 in financing.  Prior to joining the Agency, he was Vice President of Housing and Development for Volunteers of America/Delaware Valley, Inc. and was responsible for developing affordable and special needs housing.  He also spent 16 years in the private banking industry focusing on commercial real estate and community development lending.  Mr. Murray received his B.S. in Finance from San Jose State University in 1985.

Narayan, Shoba
Manager of Subsidy Accountant
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Shoba Narayan is Manager of Subsidy Accountant for the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. With over two decades of banking experience, Ms. Narayan worked for Sovereign Bank as a Financial Consultant prior to joining NJHMFA. Ms. Narayan possesses outstanding attention to detail and a deep knowledge of the entire process of reviewing and approving a rent increase request (Budget-based, OCAF, Pre-MAHRA). She works tirelessly on behalf of property owners to ensure that requests are correctly evaluated. She has made significant contributions to improve internal processes that facilitate the work of the department and result in better customer service. 

Orlando, Julia
Bergen County Housing, Health and Human Services Center

Julia Orlando, CRC, Ed.M, MA is the Director of the Bergen County Housing, Health and Human Services Center in Hackensack. The mission of this award winning center is to end homelessness in Bergen County by providing a full continuum of housing services including homelessness prevention, temporary shelter, and permanent placement.  Ms. Orlando has over 25 years of clinical and administrative experience in community-based social services in New York and New Jersey developing and providing services to persons experiencing co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders and chronic homelessness. She was also involved in jail diversion and prisoner reentry programs. Ms. Orlando has provided consultation and training for many NYC-based non-profit organizations and has served on the faculty at Hunter School of Social Work since 1995.  She holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Fordham University and a dual master’s degree in Counseling Psychology and Organizational Psychology, from Columbia University. Ms. Orlando is also a nationally certified rehabilitation counselor (CRC). Ms. Orlando served as an appointed member of the NJ Office of the Governor’s Interagency Council to End Homelessness from 2012 to 2014 and is currently serving on the Governor’s Homelessness Working Group to carry out the recommendations of the Council. She currently serves as an advisory member to the Alliance against Homelessness and the NJ Coalition to End and is a member of the board of trustees for Habitat for Humanity of Bergen County.

Ortner, David
Senior Development Associate
Advance Realty

David Ortner is Senior Development Associate at Advance Realty. In this role Mr. Ortner is responsible for the horizontal and vertical development process, including the financing, entitlements, design, construction, marketing and leasing of Advance’s development projects. Since joining Advance, he has been involved in over $500 million in development projects throughout New Jersey.  Prior to joining Advance, Mr. Ortner was the Director of Real Estate and Business Attraction for Brick City Development Corp. (BCDC), Newark’s economic development agency. At BCDC, he acted as a liaison between the administration and private developers throughout the city, advising on land use, gap financing, and the municipal process. Mr. Ortner began his career in the Real Estate department at Thelen Reid Brown Raysman and Steiner. He received a bachelor’s degree in Personal Finance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a law degree from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.

Palmieri, John
Executive Director
New Jersey Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA)

John Palmieri was selected to lead the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority as Executive Director in October, 2011, bringing to the position more than 30 years of public service experience in urban development from three East Coast cities.  A Hoboken, New Jersey native, much of Mr. Palmieri’s career has been spent in New England. As Boston Redevelopment Authority director from 2007-2011, Mr. Palmieri is credited with guiding what are described as the most significant projects in the city’s history and sought ways to stimulate job growth during the economic downturn. He previously led development efforts in Hartford, CT, and was the City of Charlotte’s (NC) first director of economic development. Mr. Palmieri’s career began in Providence, RI, where he spent 18 years in successive positions and played vital roles in that city’s development. Mr. Palmieri is a graduate of Temple University and holds a master’s degree from University of Rhode Island. 

Ratti Nicholas J.
CohnReznick Real Estate Consulting

Nicholas Ratti is a principal with CohnReznick’s Real Estate Consulting Practice in Boston, MA. He has more than 14 years of experience in the tax credit industry. Mr. Ratti is currently responsible for developing and evaluating transaction structures, providing tax compliance advice, evaluating tax credit recapture or tax-loss reallocation issues, strategizing post compliance period exits and providing syndication advisory services. He has extensive experience structuring a wide range of Low-Income Housing, Historic and New Market tax credit transactions for his developer and investor clients. Prior to joining CohnReznick, he held positions with Fidelity Investments and Ziner, Kennedy and Lehan, both based in Boston. He received his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Finance from Providence College. 

Regan, Ken
Vice President
Regan Development Corporation

Ken Regan is Vice President of Regan Development Corporation and has been a developer of housing in the Northeast for over 20 years. Regan Development Corporation focuses on improving communities through the development of affordable and special needs housing, as well as mixed use commercial projects. Mr. Regan specializes in financial structuring, marketing, resident qualification and the legal aspects of his firm's business.  In the last 20-plus years, his firm has created over 2,500 housing units. Mr. Regan is a noted speaker on affordable and special needs housing issues. He recently wrote a handbook titled, "Developing Housing for the MS Community" for use by national MS Society chapters as they explore the possibilities of creating affordable, accessible housing opportunities for people with disabilities.  He is also a member of the I Choose Home Partnership Group, created to improve New Jersey's Money Follows the Person program.  Mr. Regan is an active volunteer for the National MS Society and lives in Chappaqua, New York.

Reilly, Matthew A.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Moorestown Ecumenical Neighborhood Development, Inc. (MEND)

Matthew Reilly has served as President/CEO of Moorestown Ecumenical Neighborhood Development, Inc. (MEND), since 2002. MEND, a non-profit affordable housing development/management company located in Moorestown, NJ, has been active in the Burlington County region since 1969.  Mr. Reilly’s career experience has been in affordable housing development for both New Community Corporation and MEND as well as in commercial real estate finance for several predecessors of Wells Fargo Bank. He is a graduate of St. Peter’s University and holds a master’s degree in Sociology from Fordham University and an MBA from Rutgers University. He serves on the Executive Board of the Housing and Community Development Network of NJ and is one of two public members of the Governor’s Homelessness Working Group.

Rendeiro, Donna
Chief of Administration and Chief of Staff
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Donna Rendeiro is currently the Chief of Administration and Chief of Staff at New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency. She is responsible for the overall operations of Information Technology, Human Resources, Building Operations and Procurement and Insurance divisions of the Agency.  Additionally, Ms. Rendeiro also manages direction of New Jersey’s Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), which coordinates the state’s collaborative effort to inventory and identify services of over 250 agencies that serve the homeless population.  Prior to her current role, she was the Director of Community Planning at the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority, where she provided technical redevelopment assistance to New Jersey municipalities interested in or actively involved in the redevelopment process under the Local Redevelopment and Housing Law.  Her previous positions at the state level include Acting Executive Director and Brownfields Policy Director at the Office of Smart Growth, the predecessor of the Office for Planning Advocacy.  Additionally, she has worked with the Governor’s Office of Economic Growth on urban policy. Previous experience includes redevelopment and shared services at the municipal and county levels.  Prior to Ms. Rendeiro’s work in the public sector, she was Vice President at Citibank and Chief of Staff to the Senior Credit Officer in the credit card division. She was also a Branch Manager responsible for a $300 million asset portfolio.  She has a B.S. in Marketing from Pace University.

Roddy, Kevin
Technical Director
ICF International

Kevin Roddy is Technical Director for ICF International with over 25 years of professional experience in planning, real estate, and housing and community development programs.  Mr. Roddy worked in the public sector for 18 years in Baltimore, Maryland, prior to joining ICF International.  A former post as Community Development Grants Administrator for a large urban county, he brings hands-on expertise in planning, development, implementation and evaluation of housing and community development activities at the local level. That includes presenting to, and interacting with, community residents, elected officials, and State and Federal agency personnel.  Mr. Roddy has worked over the past three years with the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs-Sandy Recovery Division. In this role, he manages and advises the Office of Compliance and Monitoring in its efforts to verify direct beneficiary applicant eligibility, review applicant documentation for program and project compliance, and oversee the appeals process. His responsibilities include on-going in-service assistance and staff training for all aspects of the Federal CDBG-Disaster Recovery programs and activities that include affordable housing development, public facilities and infrastructure.

Rodgers, Laura
Chief Program Officer
Jewish Family Service of Atlantic County (JFS) 

Laura Rodgers, LCSW, is Chief Program Officer for Jewish Family Service of Atlantic County (JFS).  Ms. Rodgers has a BS in Public Health, a Certificate in Women’s Studies and a master’s degree in Social Work. She has over 20 years of experience providing mental health services and oversees Homeless Outreach (PATH), Jail Re-Entry and Diversion programs, Veterans Justice Involved Services, and Supportive Housing for JFS. Ms. Rodgers’ additional areas of practice and professional focus include grief counseling and social justice advocacy for housing and health care.

Sasso, Robert
Director of Property Management
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Robert Sasso has been with New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA) for more than 20 years. Beginning as a college intern, serving as the Asset Manager and now as Director of Property Management, Mr. Sasso has also held the positions of Financial Analyst, Housing Management Officer and Financial Services Coordinator. The NJHMFA’s Property Management Division monitors a portfolio of over 400 multifamily (tax credit, Section 8, and Section 236) projects comprising approximately 50,000 units throughout the state.  He also serves as Co-Chairman of the NJHMFA Property Management Task Force.  He is a member of the NJ Affordable Housing Management Association (JAHMA) and the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM). Mr. Sasso holds a Bachelor of Science degree and an M.B.A. from Rider University.

Schleicher Bravo, Blair
Chief Executive Officer
Morris Habitat for Humanity

Blair Schleicher Bravo is the Chief Executive Officer of Morris Habitat for Humanity located in Randolph, NJ. The non-profit builds homes in partnership with the community and lower income families seeking the American Dream of home ownership and other housing solutions.  Throughout her successful 12-plus year tenure, she has developed and implemented strategic business plans leading to substantial revenue and program expansion, growing the organization 10-fold.  Active in her community, Ms. Schleicher Bravo is a former four-term councilwoman in Mountain Lakes, having served two terms as Mayor and as Deputy Mayor. She is a founding member and current Vice Chair of the Housing Alliance of Morris County, a coalition of organizations committed to increasing the supply of affordable housing in Morris County. She also chairs the Housing & Community Development Network of NJ, a statewide association of 300 organizations that support the creation of housing and economic opportunities for low-and moderate income New Jerseyans. Ms. Schleicher Bravo also serves on the Deans Advisory Council at William Paterson University. She has been recognized for her work by numerous organizations and businesses. She has a BA in Liberal Studies -Social Sciences from William Paterson University.

Schoch, Stephen L.
Managing Principal
Kitchen & Associates (K&A)

Steve Schoch joined Kitchen & Associates (K&A) in 1984 and is currently Managing Principal for the firm. His dedication, inspiration and influence on the K&A staff has helped establish the firm’s leadership in the fields of affordable and supportive housing for more than 30 years. Mr. Schoch has made significant contributions to K&A’s creative and business accomplishments over three decades. He brings a special passion and expertise to the planning and design of facilities serving individuals with special needs. As a parent of an adult child born with developmental disabilities, he is intimately familiar with the unique considerations that apply to every aspect of a developmentally disabled individual’s life -- from housing to education and medical care. He brings this understanding and first-hand knowledge to K&A-designed projects, and serves as a resource for public agencies in the creation of codes and guidance documents related to the development of facilities for individuals with special needs. Mr. Schoch is currently serving on the board of trustees of the Supportive Housing Association of NJ, and is a regular conference speaker on topics related to supportive housing, sustainable design, and adaptive reuse of historic buildings. He is certified with the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, is a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Accredited Professional with advanced LEED AP Building Design + Construction (AP BD+C) certification and is a Registered Architect in 19 states.

Serio, Jr., George F.
Essex County Division of Housing & Community Development

George Serio is currently the Director of the Essex County Division of Housing & Community Development, which administers the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG), and HOME Investment Partnerships Program. Mr. Serio is responsible for managing the consolidated planning process, the county’s Home Improvement Program, CDBG, ESG, as well as the HOME funded affordable housing loan program.  He has worked for the County of Essex for the past 21 years -- 17 of those as coordinator of Monitoring and Evaluation and assistant director with the Division of Housing of Community Development. Mr. Serio is a 1995 Rutgers University graduate with a BS in Business Administration.  His certifications include HOME Program Specialist, Lead Based Paint Safe Work Practices and Housing Finance Development.  Mr. Serio currently serves as President of the New Jersey Community Development Association and also serves on the board of directors for the National Association for County Community and Economic Development.

Short, Esq, Carol Ann
Chief Executive Officer
New Jersey Builders Association (NJBA)

Carol Ann Short, Esq. is a seasoned government-relations professional with extensive experience in the policy and management of housing related issues in New Jersey. She assumed the position of Chief Executive Officer of the New Jersey Builders Association (NJBA) in 2013 following a post as the Association’s Chief Operating Officer. Ms. Short was initially hired by NJBA more than 25 years ago as the Executive Director of the NJBA affiliate established to support the fast-growing condominium market. She left the Association briefly to practice law only to return to serve in an expanded capacity as the Association’s Vice President of Government Affairs. Ms. Short has been instrumental in successfully lobbying for the enactment of pro-building legislative initiatives including, four Permit Extension Acts, the Water Quality Management Plan law and extension of that law, the Time of Application Law, amendments to the Redevelopment law, Age-Restricted Conversion law, and numerous others. She has been included on the 2013 and 2014 lists of the 50 Most Powerful People in Real Estate and, in 2013, was also selected as one of the 50 Best Women in Business by NJBIZ Magazine. Ms. Short earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at The College of New Jersey and a Juris Doctor degree from Temple University.

Smith, III, Leslie E.
Brokerage Services Senior Director
Cushman & Wakefield

Les Smith is a real estate professional with more than 25 years of experience in all areas of commercial real estate. Mr. Smith initially spent 16 years with Cushman & Wakefield as a broker, salesperson and corporate services transaction manager. Since rejoining the firm in 2012, Mr. Smith has been the lead broker responsible for marketing, sales and leasing for the redevelopment of Fort Monmouth. He works with the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority. The Fort consists of 1,127 acres with a land use plan for approximately 1,600 residential units; 500,000 square feet of retail space; 2 million square feet of office, research & development and other commercial uses; and 300,000 square feet of non-profit, civic, government and educational uses. Working on the corporate occupier side of Cushman & Wakefield’s AT&T and Lucent Technologies (now Alcatel- Lucent) accounts, Mr. Smith was responsible for identifying real estate opportunities throughout the northeastern portfolio. Prior to rejoining Cushman & Wakefield, he served as Land Acquisition Manager for K. Hovnanian Homes in Edison, NJ, responsible for developing new opportunities for residential development.

Stewart, Jonelle N.
Manager of TRACS
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Jonelle Stewart has been employed at New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency for the past 10 years. During her tenure, Ms. Stewart has held positions as Project Assistant, TRACS Specialist, and currently serves as Manager of TRACS. She has developed and conducted various workshops associated with special claims at NJ Affordable Housing Management Association (JAHMA) Spring Management Events. In her capacity as TRACS Coordinator, Ms. Stewart is responsible for troubleshooting TRACS-related issues with owners and agents and conducts all staff training.

Southon, Sue  
Senior Technical Specialist
ICF International

Sue Southon is a development professional, trainer and strategic planner with over 40 years of experience in community, economic development and housing development. Her participation in intensive Technical Assistance engagements in several states included Michigan, where she provided senior expertise on program design, organizational structure and staffing requirements along with budget development, regulatory compliance, and project underwriting and implementation for CDBG, HOME, NSP and other federally funded projects.  She also has assisted New Jersey’s Department of Community Affairs with program development and implementation for $4.1 billion of CDBG-DR funds. Ms. Southon gained her vast experience through years of working with states and localities where she served as a strategic advisor to local governments, community development organizations, and private developers. She served as a trainer for the International Economic Development Council, Professional Certification Program, the Economic Development Institute, and the National Association of Workforce Boards.  Ms. Southon holds certifications as HOME Program Specialist, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and Economic Development Finance Professional, The National Development Council. She holds BA and MSW degrees from the University of Michigan.

Thomas, Francis
Director of Contract Administration
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Francis Thomas has been employed by the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency for over 30 years and is currently the Director of the Contract Administration Division. Prior to leading the staff of Contract Administration, Mr. Thomas worked in the Property Management Division for 14 years in various positions including Housing Management Officer, Manager of Asset Management, and Assistant Director. Currently, the Contract Administration Division manages a portfolio of 328 contracts representing 3,009 units and is responsible for the renewal of Housing Assistance Payment Contracts, Rental Adjustments, TRACS, Management and Occupancy Reviews. The division also oversees resolution of resident and management-related concerns. The Contract Administration Division at full capacity comprises a staff of 30 dedicated individuals.

Tinen, Maureen

Maureen Tinen is President of UCEDC, a statewide, non-profit economic development corporation, a position she has held for over 27 years.  During her tenure, she led the company’s transformation from a single county EDC to what is now one of the oldest and largest economic development organizations in the state. As a Community Development Financial Institution and SBA lender, UCEDC is committed to providing small businesses with access to capital when conventional lending sources are not available.  Ms. Tinen introduced new loan programs and innovative outreach initiatives, resulting in over $24 million in small business loans and the creation/retention of 6,000-plus jobs in New Jersey.  UCEDC serves as the entrepreneurial training arm of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, by providing small business training and mentorship services throughout New Jersey.  Ms. Tinen has helped expand the impact of that training through strategic partnerships with public and private entities that support UCEDC’s mission, reaching over 10,000 small business owners and entrepreneurs.  Additionally, she worked to secure designation as a US Department of Defense Procurement Technical Assistance Center, which has helped New Jersey’s small businesses secure $1.5 billion in government contracts.

Toronto, Tom   
Bergen County’s United Way

Tom Toronto is President of Bergen County’s United Way and has 34 years of experience working for local United Way organizations in New Jersey’s Bergen, Burlington and Hudson counties.  He serves on the Board of the NJ 2-1-1 Partnership, which drives implementation of the 2-1-1 helpline on behalf of New Jersey’s local United Ways and New Jersey State Government. Mr. Toronto also serves on Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Center for Excellence in Leadership, Governance and Philanthropy Advisory Board; Bergen County Government’s Board of Social Service; and the Supportive Housing Association of New Jersey Board. Mr. Toronto is active in his local community having served as a member of the Leonia Governing Body, the Leonia Library Board and chair of the town’s Planning Board. He holds a BA from Montclair State University and MA from Columbia University.

Watkins, Adonica
Manager of Asset Management, Contract Administration
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Adonica Watkins has been with the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency for more than 15 years, beginning as a Contract Administrator. For the past nine years, she has served as the Agency’s Asset Manager. Ms. Watkins is a Certified Professional of Occupancy and a Fair Housing Coordinator. Her 24 years of public housing industry experience includes previously held positions of Accountant and Budget Examiner at another public housing agency. Ms. Watkins holds a Bachelor of Science from Glassboro State College.

Winter, Janel
Director, Division of Housing and Community Resources

Department of Community Affairs (DCA)

Janel Winter is the Director of the Division of Housing and Community Resources at the Department of Community Affairs. Prior to joining DCA, she served as Director of the Office of Housing at the Department of Human Services, as well as Director of Housing at the Division of Developmental Disabilities. Ms. Winter also held the position of Associate Director of the New Jersey office of CSH, a national non-profit focusing on housing and services for people with special needs. Ms. Winter worked for several years in homeless service and housing agencies in Chicago.

Wolde, Yirgu
Director, Supported Housing and Special Needs  
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Yirgu Wolde was appointed Director of the Supported Housing and Special Needs Division of the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency in May 2013. Since Mr. Wolde joined the Agency in 1989, he has served in several capacities, including Assistant Director, Manager, and Senior Development Officer. In his present position, he oversees the production of supportive housing, provides management and support for program staff and program activities, and provides technical assistance to program staff and developers of special needs housing projects. At the Agency, Mr. Wolde also served as Development Officer and Senior Development Officer in the Research and Development Division -- now Multifamily Programs and Lending -- as well as in the Policy Development Division. Prior to joining the Agency, Mr. Wolde served as Program Planner at Middlesex County Department of Human Services and the Middlesex County Economic Opportunities Corporation in New Brunswick, New Jersey.  Mr. Wolde has served as a member of the State Mental Health Planning Council, the NJ Developmental Disability Council, and the Zoning Board of the City of New Brunswick. He presently serves as Commissioner on the New Brunswick Redevelopment and Housing Authority and serves as Treasurer of Alumni Association –Edward J. Bloustein School-Rutgers University. Mr. Wolde is a graduate of Rutgers University and holds a Master of City and Regional Planning as well as an MBA from Rutgers University.

Zekaria, Maurice
Paramount Realty Services, Inc. and LMS Commercial Real Estate

Maurice Zekaria is the President of Paramount Realty Services, Inc., based in Lakewood, NJ and LMS Commercial Real Estate, headquartered in Lancaster, PA. Both companies employ over 60 highly seasoned employees. Over the past 15 years, Mr. Zekaria has successfully completed more than $1 billion in acquisitions through the development and purchase of dominant outdoor shopping centers throughout the Northeast. His companies own and operate over 10 million square feet of real estate.  He has grown his companies over the years through his deep rooted and long-lasting relationships with other owners, developers, institutional partners, and investment brokers. Mr. Zekaria oversees all facets of his companies’ daily operations and leads the decision-making process relating to new acquisitions, financing, property management, and leasing.

Additional Speakers and Moderator biographies coming soon!

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