The Latest News
It seems that more and more we are an industry in flux. The one thing we know for sure is that nothing stays the same. In fact, sometimes even catching one's breath before the next big change comes along can be a challenge. This has made us extremely reactive as opposed to being proactive as those not actually working in the trenches determine what works best for our agencies and for our residents. I challenge us to strive to change this.
I look at RAD as an example. RAD has provided great opportunity for many of our agencies to move out of public housing, retain ownership, and address a backlog of repairs and needed upgrades. Although this vehicle has been a perfect answer for many agencies, we must be mindful that it just doesn't work for many others. While RAD makes it clear that HUD would prefer to move away from the Public Housing portfolio, what happens to the agencies that are left behind?
Another example is the growing discussion around regionalization/consolidation. It has always been my position, and the position of NAHRO, that voluntary consortia/consolidation are absolutely appropriate when so determined by the participating PHAs. The key word in that statement is voluntary. Community needs are best met through local control and should not be mandated.
So what does work? What are the viable options? Although I do not have specific answers, I do have ideas about how we get there. I know that, as housers, we have a deep understanding of our programs. Additionally, I know that we are an especially creative group of professionals. Using that knowledge and creativity, we should be the ones who are able to develop specific solutions and drive advocacy for those specific program changes or implementations.
I have heard so many creative and well thought out ideas that range from ways to move our properties out of the public housing portfolio and still maintain ownership to thoughts on term limit implementation. We need to be talking about these ideas openly as opposed to having hushed, in the back corner conversations out of fear HUD will hear or that our colleagues will laugh. Let's be bold! Let's brainstorm and then share the ideas that make sense. Let's change our conversations from those focused around surviving every rule change thrown our way to creative and possibility thinking discussions. These are ways our ideas can begin to take hold and to grow.
Begin the discussion today! If you have specific ideas, share them! I would love to hear them!
2017 Annual Conference a Success!
Over 250 housing industry colleagues gathered in Portland Oregon for two inspiring and motivating days of professional development and networking.
Keynote speaker Tim Wise, anti-racist essayist, author and educator delivered a motivating and thought provoking talk about white privilege and the need to change the narrative that is spoken about the poor. He said "we need to start telling the truth about our own story, and stop telling lies about other people's stories".
With over 25 breakout sessions, an exhibit hall with 22 industry related vendors, four general sessions and meals, attendees had plenty to keep them busy and engaged.
Next year's conference will be
May 6-8, 2018 at the brand new
Hyatt Regency Lake Washington in Renton, WA. Mark your calendar! You won't want to miss it!
Below are some highlights from this year's conference.
Sunny Shaw, PNRC President
Steve Merritt, NAHRO President
|John Bohm, NAHRO Interim CEO
General Sessions and Breakouts
Housing America Poster Contest
This year's poster contest had a record number of submissions.
115 entries were received from Housing Authorities in our region, 88 of those entries came from King County Housing Authority alone. The entries were narrowed down to three in each age category and then PNRC members attending the conference were given the chance to vote on their favorite in each age category.
Elementary School K-5th Grade Winner
Mischa Larkins from Housing Authority of Yamhill County
Middle School 6th-8th Grade Winner
Jannely Zuniga from Yakima Housing Authority
High School 9th-12th grade Winner
Zerin Hossain from King County Housing Authority
An important part of the Annual Conference is the opportunity to recognize agencies and the great work they are doing. Award submissions are reviewed by a jury to determine PRAIS award winners as well as who will be submitted for NAHRO Awards of Merit and Excellence.
Congratulations to the 2017 PRAIS Award winners!
In Project Design, the Northeast Oregon Housing Authority
won for their project Blue Crossing Apartments
L to R: Steve Merritt, NAHRO President; Pam Thompson, Director of Finance and Dale Inslee, Executive Director, NE Oregon Housing Authority; Sunny Shaw, PNRC President;
John Bohm, NAHRO Interim CEO
In Resident and Client Services, the Housing Authority of the City of Pocatello
won for their project A Book for Every Child
L to R: Steve Merritt, NAHRO President, Sunny Shaw, Executive Director, Karina Rorris Commissioner and Michele Poletti, Executive Assistant, Housing Authority of the City of Pocatello; John Bohm, NAHRO Interim CEO
The President's Award is given to a person whom the President feels has exemplified leadership and commitment to the work of the region over the last year.
The 2017 President's Award winner is Andrew Rodriguez, Executive Director, Nampa Housing Authority.
President Sunny Shaw said "Andy has been the go to guy this year. Each time we needed someone to step up and do something extra, he was there. Andy's continued commitment to PNRC is truly appreciated".
Recognition of PNRC President Sunny Shaw
Incoming President, Saeed Hajarizadeh presented outgoing President, Sunny Shaw with a plaque.
PNRC Recognizes Sunny Shaw for her service as Regional President from 2015-2017.
Sunny's passion, commitment and dedicated leadership ensured the region successfully met the needs of its members.
2017-2019 Election of Officers and Members-at-Large
A slate of nominees was submitted by the PNRC Nominating Committee (members included Andy Rodriguez, Josh Crites and Jacob Fox). No nominations were received so the slate of Officers and Members-At-Large were presented and elected by acclamation. Those elected will assume their positions in October 2017.
- President - Saeed Hajarizadeh - Vancouver Housing Authority (WA)
- Senior Vice President - Cupid Alexander - Portland Housing Bureau (OR)
- VP Commissioners - Karina Rorris - Housing Authority of the City of Pocatello (ID)
- VP Community Development - Jacob Fox - HACSA of Lane County (OR)
- VP Housing - Sarah Parker - NE Oregon Housing Authority (OR)
- VP Member Services - Pam Thompson - NE Oregon Housing Authority (OR)
- VP Professional Development - Bill Cook - King County Housing Authority (WA)
- Secretary - Holly Paterson - Housing Kitsap (WA)
- Treasurer - Gary Calvert - Washington county Department of Housing Services (OR)
- Member-At-Large - Josh Crites - Seattle Housing Authority (WA)
- Member-At-Large - Andy Rodriguez - Nampa Housing Authority (ID)
- Member-At-Large - Darlene Kelly - HACSA of Lane County (OR)
- Member-At-Large - Marka Turner - North Bend City/Coos Curry Housing Authority (OR
50/50 Raffle for PNRC Scholarship Fund
For the third year we had a 50/50 raffle drawing to raise funds for the PNRC Scholarship Program. This year we raised $1,600 which meant that $800 would go to the scholarship fund and $800 to the raffle winner. The winner was Lori Hays from Spokane Housing Authority. Lori donated $700 of her $800 winnings back to the scholarship fund. Thank you Lori for your generosity and support!
Lori Hays, raffle winner with Sunny Shaw, PNRC President
Sponsors and Exhibitors
We are able to keep our conference registration fees low (the lowest of all NAHRO regions) because of the support of our Sponsors and Exhibitors. Please keep them in mind when looking for products or services for your agency. Click on their name to be directed to their website.
Thank you to the Conference Planning Committee!
The conference planning committee volunteers their time to select topics, coordinate speakers as well as advise on other conference logistics. Our amazing conference would not be possible without them. This year's committee included:
- Cupid Alexander, Portland Housing Bureau
- Therrie Butz, Boise City/Ada County Housing Authority
- Bill Cook, King County Housing Authority
- Josh Crites, Seattle Housing Authority
- Lori Hays, Spokane Housing Authority
- Darlene Kelly, HASCA of Lane County
- Lowel Krueger, Yakima Housing Authority
- Eric Lane, Tacoma Housing Authority
- Holly Patterson, Housing Kitsap
- Sunny Shaw, Housing Authority of the City of Pocatello
- Lisa Stevens, Idaho Housing & Finance Administration
- Marka Turner, North Bend City/Coos Curry County Housing Authority
- Dave Wellings, Seattle Housing Authority
If you are interested in being a part of the Conference Planning Committee,
please contact Kristen Damazio, Regional Service Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org
$269 million approved to build, renovate affordable housing statewide
The Washington State Housing Finance Commission approved a total of
in financing for the rehabilitation or new construction of more than
affordable apartments in small and large communities across the state.
The nine projects range from much-needed rehabilitation of public housing in Aberdeen to new apartments for the homeless in Spokane, Yakima, Seattle and Renton.
They include the second group from the 2017 Low-Income Housing Tax Credit competition to be approved by the governor-appointed Commission.
"The housing tax credit is our state's-and our nation's-most effective resource for developing and preserving affordable housing," said Karen Miller, chair of the Housing Finance Commission. "Rural, urban and suburban communities gain not only construction jobs, but housing that stays affordable for decades."
In addition to allocating federal housing tax credits, the Commission finances affordable housing by issuing tax-exempt bonds or notes. Tax-exempt bonds allow developers to borrow at lower interest rates, while the housing tax credit allows them to raise capital by selling the credits to investors.
NAHRO Merit College Scholarship Program
In 2017 NAHRO established the NAHRO Merit College Scholarship Program. Eight scholarships will be awarded, one from each region, with six receiving $1,000 and two exemplary applications receiving an additional $2,000 and $5,000 respectively. Each region should submit one application of their choice from their own scholarship program, or if no regional scholarship program is in place, select one eligible recipient from the region and complete the entire application for submission.
The NAHRO Scholarship Committee, comprised of members from the Housing America Task Force, will accept and review the scholarship applications and determine the scholarship amount awarded. All applications must be submitted by June 30, 2017 and the winners will be notified in July. The Scholarship Committee awards scholarship money directly to the accredited institution of higher education once proof of registration at the college or university is received.
Please read the rules and application very carefully.
If you have any questions, please call the NAHRO office at (202) 580-7223.
Nominate Your Colleague for a NAHRO Award!
NAHRO offers a variety of awards and recognition to persons who have made outstanding contributions to the housing and community development field.
- The M. Justin Herman Memorial Award established in 1975, provides a living acknowledgement for the standard of excellence Mr. Herman established in the field of housing and community development and the contributions he made to the beauty and vigor of San Francisco. The award is NAHRO's highest and most prestigious, and it honors an exceptionally qualified person who has made outstanding contributions to the quality of life through service in the field of housing or community development.
- The John D. Lange International Award established in 1983, honors John D. Lange, Executive Director of NAHRO from 1951 to 1970, who actively participated throughout his professional career in international exchange and, in his retirement, carried out executive service assignments in Argentina, Indonesia, and the Philippines. The award recognizes an individual who has made outstanding contributions toward international understanding.
- The Elizabeth B. Wells Memorial Award established in 1987 it provides a living acknowledgment of the outstanding contributions Ms. Wells made to the housing field as a member of the Board of Commissioners of the King County (WA) Housing Authority and as NAHRO's first Vice President of the Commissioners Committee. It honors a current commissioner, or one who has served within the past 12 months, who has demonstrated excellence in advocating for and developing the financial, political, and community support necessary to ensure the continuation and expansion of housing or community development programs.
- The NAHRO Fellowship Program established in 2007 by the NAHRO Board of Governors honors members for their accumulated wisdom and mastery as seen by their achievements and their actions within their own communities. These individuals have demonstrated exemplary qualities as housing and community development advocates, professionals, and/or volunteers.
- The Emerging Leader Award, established in 2013, recognizes an individual who has been involved in NAHRO at the national, regional and/or chapter levels for at least five years and has distinguished him/herself as an Emerging Leader. Emerging Leaders are interested in advancement in the housing and community development field and who gain knowledge and integrate themselves into the industry through mentors, trainings and conferences. They demonstrate leadership and are willing to contribute and share knowledge/ideas with others.
- The Manufacturers and Suppliers Council (MSC) Community Service Award recognizes outstanding MSC members and their staff engaged in voluntary community service for the benefit of a resident, a local housing authority, a community development agency, or other entity involved in providing low-income housing or serving that population. Typically, the service would be through the donation of money, goods, services, manpower, or mentoring.
The deadline for most awards is August 15.
Sessions Confirmed for the 2017 NAHRO Summer Conference:
Strengthening Our Foundation
Register now (with an early bird discount through 5/31) for the
2017 NAHRO Summer Conference,
which will be held at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown Hotel from July 16-18.
The conference will feature 24+ educational sessions focused on current and emerging industry issues. Session topics have now been confirmed. Additionally the conference will offer a showcase of innovative programs and services from NAHRO's 2017 Agency Awards of Merit-winning agencies; a housing and community development tour coordinated by the Indianapolis Housing Agency; inspiring and thought-provoking speakers; and as always, productive peer-to-peer networking opportunities.
For Commissioners: NAHRO Professional Development is offering Summer Conference registrants a special opportunity to attend our Commissioners' Fundamentals seminar,
while also attending the conference.
VAWA 2013 Implementation
A NAHRO Professional Development e-Briefing
May 16, 2017 1:30 - 3:00 pm EDT
Last November, HUD published a long-awaited final rule that provides expanded housing protections for survivors of violence by fully codifying the provisions of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA 2013) into HUD regulations. At its core, VAWA 2013 prohibits HUD housing providers from denying or terminating housing assistance on the basis that an applicant or tenant is a survivor of violence.
Join NAHRO's in-house policy experts as they discuss compliance with the final rule and the requirements for completing an
emergency transfer plan and providing emergency transfers. Just $95 for NAHRO Members!
Reminder: Whether you're watching alone or with an audience of 100, only one registration per connected device is required, making NAHRO Professional Development's e-Briefings an outstanding value!
Online registration will close Monday, May 15 at 11:59 pm EDT.
Looking for a new job or just want to see what's out there?
Bookmark the Job Openings page on our website to see.
Positions are updated regularly.
Like us on Facebook and
Follow us on Twitter
for current industry related news!
Check out the PNRC-NAHRO Website at