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

For over 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.

2017 CONFERENCE SPEAKERS
Richman, Charles A.
Commissioner
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 40 years of experience in both the public and private sectors. While at NJHMFA, he has instituted significant new programs, including the Multifamily Conduit Bond Program, Mortgage Backed Securities Program and the Supportive Housing Connection Program. He led the agency to establish new meaningful policies in areas such as construction cost containment and delinquent asset management procedures. In 2013, he led the NJHMFA to amend its Federal Low Income Tax Credit Qualified Allocation Plan to incorporate “Opportunity Incentives” to help direct the siting of new affordable housing projects to areas that did not have concentrations of poverty but had better schools and employment opportunities. These changes dramatically improved locations of affordable housing and has been recognized by HUD and regional Smart Growth advocates as being cutting edge in the industry. After Superstorm Sandy, he led NJHMFA's response to the disaster, which resulted in the deployment of nearly $750 million through several programs designed to stabilize Sandy-impacted towns and create thousands of new housing opportunities for those impacted by the storm. These combined efforts have generated a significant increase in housing units financed by the NJHMFA, over 30,000 affordable homes, since 2010. Prior to joining NJHMFA, he spent 25 years in the real estate development industry in the tri-state area. He is a multiple graduate of Rutgers University, where he received his bachelor and master’s degrees in both city and regional planning and business administration. He is active in several professional and nonprofit organizations, including the Rutgers Center for Real Estate, the NJ Sharing Network, the Bloustein School Alumni Association, and Dorothea’s House.

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

Melissa J. 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.



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

Michael Arena is the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency’s 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.  



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

Jessica Battaglia is a Partner with Jardim, Meisner & Susser, P.C. located in the firm’s Florham Park, N.J., 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 and homeowners associations in the transition and management of its restricted covenants.  



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.  



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 New Jersey. Mr. Burbridge brings 30 years of private sector experience and knowledge in the field of construction management to the Agency.  



Chmura, Nina
Partner
WithumSmith+Brown, PC

Nina Chmura is a Partner based in Withum’s New Brunswick, N.J., office and is a licensed certified public accountant in the State of New Jersey. She has more than 12 years of professional accounting experience assisting not-for-profit organizations, real estate business and companies in the consumer products industry. Ms. Chmura is an active member of Withum’s Real Estate and Consumer Products Services Groups. A graduate of Boston University with a Bachelor of Science in business administration with an accounting concentration, she joined Withum in 2004. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants (NJCPA), CoreNet Global, NJ - Special Events Board Member, and the New Jersey Food Council and its Tax Policy and Trade Relations Committees. Ms. Chmura serves on the Finance Committee of the Raritan Valley YMCA and as the Treasurer of the Wanamassa PTA. 



Czapnik, Craig
Vice President of Sales
Wallace Eannace Associates

Craig Czapnik is a Vice President of Sales for Wallace Eannace Associates in Franklin Lakes, N.J., a manufacturers rep firm. He studied material science engineering at the University of Pittsburgh and Global Affairs at New York University. Formerly of Victaulic Company and Industrial Acoustics Company, he has been in the New York/New Jersey and global construction market for over 10 years.  



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

James Decker is a Partner with WithumSmith + Brown, PC, based in the firm’s New Brunswick, N.J., 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 Bachelor of Science 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.  



Dyer, Richard
Contract Coordinator
New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (NJHMFA)

Richard Dyer has worked at the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency 14 years as a Contract Administrator and a Contract Coordinator. He has spoken at numerous conferences and is well versed at the contract renewal process. Prior to joining NJHMFA, Mr. Dyer was an equities trader for Bankmark Financial Services.  



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 33 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.  



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 30 years, both as a Resident Site Manager for a Section 8 development and as an Occupancy Specialist in the Property Management Division of the New Jersey Housing and 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. 



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.  



Nelson, Sean Michael
Vice President, Operations and Business Development
Evco Mechanical Corporation

Sean Michael Nelson began his career at Evco Mechanical Corporation as an intern working on mechanical system designs and making CAD drawings while pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Vermont. Since joining Evco 12 years ago, he has worked on developing, designing and building a vast array of energy efficiency upgrades projects centered on mechanical systems for multi-family buildings, hospitals and schools. Mr. Nelson currently spends most of his time working with building owners, utility companies, energy engineers and energy services companies to develop, finance and manage large scale mechanical and electrical energy efficiency upgrades projects. Mr. Nelson also holds a Master of Business Administration from Rutgers University. 



Rader, Brian
Partner
Jardim, Meisner & Susser, P.C.

Brian Rader, a Partner at Jardim, Meisner & Susser, P.C. in Florham Park, N.J., routinely provides legal advice and services to individuals and businesses in the real estate community. He works extensively with property owners, managers, real estate brokers and community associations, providing a full range of litigation and general counsel services, and is well-versed in legislation that impacts the real estate community. Mr. Rader has actively litigated a wide range of civil matters involving real estate and multi-dwelling properties throughout New Jersey including, but not limited to, matters involving negligence and breach of habitability standards; actions against unit owners for breach of community governing documents; allegations involving breach of fiduciary duty standards on the part of community association non-profit boards; contract/lease disputes; actions for possession of real property; and foreclosure proceedings. Previously, he served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Mary K. Costello in the Civil Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey, Hudson County. Mr. Rader is a member of the Board of Adjustment in the Township of Springfield. He earned a Bachelor of Science in criminology and justice studies from the College of New Jersey and a Juris Doctor from Seton Hall University School of Law. Mr. Rader is a member of the bars of the State of New Jersey and the State of New York. 



Santa, Dean
Asset Management Division Director, N.Y. Northeast Regional Office
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

Dean Santa has worked in real estate for the last 28 years. He managed his own appraisal company and real estate sales office before joining HUD in 1997. He served as the Director of Multifamily for the HUD Newark Program Center before becoming the Asset Management Division Director for the N.Y. Northeast Regional Office. He oversees the N.Y., Buffalo and N.J. offices, covering 2,400 Assets, that house over 500,000 families. He worked in the Asset Management Branch of Multifamily Housing as a Senior Asset Manager for 16 years. He has been the point of contact for many complex programs during his tenure at HUD. He studied business and real estate law at the College of Staten Island.  



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 for more than 20 years. Beginning as a college intern, serving as the Asset Manager and now as Director of Property Management, Mr. Sasso also has 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 New Jersey Affordable Housing Management Association (JAHMA) and the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM). Mr. Sasso holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Business Administration from Rider University. 



Shine, John M.
President
Shine Engineering, P.A.

John Shine. P.E., is Owner and President of Shine Engineering, a full-service consulting engineering company founded in 2000 providing HVAC, electrical, plumbing and sprinkler design services. Mr. Shine has extensive experience in the design of apartment buildings, troubleshooting services in existing apartment building systems and providing energy upgrades in heating, air conditioning, domestic water, electrical and lighting systems. Mr. Shine has designed numerous generator replacements and upgrades. He has a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology. He is a board member of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs Mechanical/ Energy Sub-Code Committee, member of the ASH RAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineer) and a member of the American Society of Plumbing Engineers. 



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 11 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 New Jersey 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. 



Thomas, Francis
Senior 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 was recently promoted to Senior 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 342 contracts representing 33,009 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. 



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 over 16 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 25 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. 



Wirth, Eileen, MBA, CPM®, HCCP, SHCM®
President and CEO
Octavia Hill Association, Inc.

Eileen Wirth started her career in the late 1980s at the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA). During the 16-plus years with the HMFA, she advanced her career through the Property Management Division providing oversight to over 20 affordable housing communities that had received HMFA financing, and finally serving as a Senior Bond Analyst. Since leaving HMFA, Ms. Wirth served in the housing departments of two large faith-based non-profit entities that provided affordable housing throughout New Jersey and the Greater Philadelphia area. Currently, she is the president and CEO of the Octavia Hill Association, Inc. (OHA), which develops, operates and manages approximately 400 housing units of both market rate and affordable homes throughout Philadelphia. With an operating budget exceeding $3.4 million annually, Ms. Wirth is responsible for overall company operations, as well as new development, refinancing, sales and major renovations. Ms. Wirth earned a Bachelor of Computer Science with a concentration in finance, from what was then Rider College in 1988, and obtained a Master of Business Administration from Rider University in 1995. She also holds the Certified Property Manager (CPM) ® designation from the Institute of Real Estate Management, the Housing Credit Compliance Professional (HCCP) designation from the National Association of Home Builders, and Specialist in Housing Credit Management (SHCM®) from the National Affordable Housing Management Association.  

Additional speaker and moderator biographies coming soon!

 




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