The Latest News
November 2016
President's Message

Hello Housers,
As you read this article, you know something that I did not at the time I wrote it: the outcome of our local, state, and national elections. One thing, no matter the outcome, that I am certain we can all agree on is the fact that the national climate of hate is increasing. This concerns me greatly because in that climate, I see the people we serve becoming victims of hate at an increasing rate of frequency; after all, during times of hate, those least like the majority population are easily the targets.  We have an obligation to intercede when we see this occur. There are several situations that come to mind where we must be aware and vigilant in our reactions regarding this issue.
First, at our agencies, we must ensure that all who work for us, by employ or by contract, understand that we will not tolerate any type of behavior that suggests hate or discrimination. Those we serve should never feel contempt, disdain, or devalued by coming to our offices for services or by those who do our work in the units they call home.
Second, in our communities, we have an obligation to be the voice of reason when intolerance grows. Recently, in Pocatello, we have struggled with discrimination by landlords of international students attending college. Our housing authority has worked to create environments of discussion and education with the city, landlords, the college, and the students. We recognize that we must be leaders in our community by taking a stand against hate.
Finally, at the national level, we must continue to advocate for those we serve. We must remind our elected officials of their goodness. I have repeatedly heard one of my mentors say "just because people lack money does not mean that they lack virtue". We must be the advocates who remind our country of their virtue.
Today, I am uncertain what the outcome of the election will be. I am, however, certain that our work and advocacy have never been more critical. We can help to protect others from the winds of hatred.



Regional News

With the departure of Jill Smith, our region was sad to lose our Sr. Vice President. However, we are excited to announce that a strong leader will be stepping into this role. Saeed Hajarizadeh has been vetted by the Nominating and Elections Committee and, as per our by-laws regarding filling mid-term vacancies, has been elected to the position by the Executive Board of PNRC.

Saeed Hajarizadeh has been working for Vancouver Housing Authority since 2003 as Finance Director and Deputy Director. He is on the Board of four community and statewide nonprofits engaged in providing adequate housing and economic development.
Saeed is a member of National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) and serves as vice-chair of its International and Global Exchange committee. He obtained his Bachelors in Planning Public Policy and Management from University of Oregon and his MBA from Cal State San Bernardino.
RegNews3 Friends of Housing
Honored for Leadership, Innovation
SEATTLE-The Washington State Housing Finance Commission has honored six individuals as "Friends of Housing" for their work to create, support and advocate for affordable housing in Washington state.

In addition, Congressman Denny Heck presented the Margaret M. Sevy Affordable Housing Lifetime Achievement Award to Tacoma Housing Authority director Michael Mirra.

The awards were presented October 5 in a lunch ceremony at the annual Housing Washington conference in Tacoma.

"These inspiring leaders have improved the lives of thousands of Washington residents through affordable housing, while raising the bar for all of us in the industry," said Karen Miller, chair of the Housing Finance Commission.

2016 Friends of Housing:

Marilee Roloff: The founder of Spokane's Crosswalk teen shelter and the recently retired director of Volunteers of American Eastern Washington, Marilee Roloff has spent her career combating homelessness in Spokane through shelter, services, and most recently permanent housing at the new Marilee Apartments.

Stephen Norman: Improving health and education outcomes for residents is a passion of Stephen Norman, executive director of the King County Housing Authority. He has led the agency to success through local partnerships and lent his voice to national housing advocacy efforts.

Betsy Hunter: "Community" has been Betsy Hunter's focus during her years as deputy director for Plymouth Housing and formerly chief real-estate development officer for Capitol Hill Housing. Her impact can be felt in award-winning housing projects throughout urban Seattle.

Chris Lowell: As the executive director of the Housing Authority of Thurston County, Chris Lowell has built a small and struggling agency into a financially strong one that oversees more than 500 units of housing. She has also fostered collaboration with local nonprofits and supported affordable-housing advocacy.

Joanne Quinn: A longtime senior asset manager at the City of Seattle Office of Housing, Joanne Quinn was honored as an "unsung hero" whose expertise has supported affordable-housing management and sustainable building standards statewide.

Robert Rozen: The sole out-of-state honoree, Robert Rozen played a key role in the development of the 1986 federal legislation that created the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program while working for then-Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell. He has since continued to advocate strongly for the program.

2016 Margaret M. Sevy Lifetime Achievement Award:

Michael Mirra has shown a lifelong commitment to social justice and creating opportunity. As an attorney during the '90s, Michael Mirra successfully litigated on behalf of homeless families and poor neighborhoods in several high-profile cases, including Washington State Coalition for the Homeless vs. the Department of Social and Health Services, decided by the state Supreme Court.

He has since led the Tacoma Housing Authority in the multimillion-dollar transformations of the Salishan and Bay Terrace communities, and won the agency national recognition for its innovative and life-changing support of families and children.

The Friend of Housing Awards are presented each year to individuals or organizations who have made exceptional contributions to creating or supporting affordable housing in ways such as helping to solve housing problems, creating innovative financing mechanisms, or drafting legislation or policy that addresses the state's housing needs.

The Margaret M. Sevy Lifetime Achievement Award, named for a respected former staff member of the Housing Finance Commission, recognizes and celebrates individuals for their exceptional contributions, vision, and commitment to promoting affordable housing in Washington State over a sustained period of time.
grey-curve-footer.jpg RegNews4

RegNews5 Housing America Poster Contest Winners Announced

As part of NAHRO's Housing America campaign, a poster contest is held each year for children living in affordable housing owned or administered by NAHRO member agencies. Posters reflect the national theme "What Home Means to Me." The contest is a collaborative effort of NAHRO's local and state chapters, regional chapters and national NAHRO.

Two entries from the Pacific Northwest were selected as winners and their artwork will be featured on the 2017 Calendar.  Congratulations to Ian from Nampa Housing Authority and Kristal from the Housing Authority of Yamhill County. 

Kristal - Housing Authority of Yamhill County

"This poster is what home means to me, because it shows my whole family doing what they like, for example, play soccer, walk outside, and also because now there is my little baby brother that was just born, and he brought happiness to hour house."


"Home means having a house to live in with my family. To be safe."
Ian, Nampa Housing Authority



Proceeds from the calendar sales go to a fund for the winners of the poster calendar contest. The 12 national honorees will each receive $100 Visa gift cards and the National Grand Prize honoree will receive an iPad. The Grand Prize honoree and his or her family will also be provided with transportation to and lodging at NAHRO's 2016 Washington Conference. The Grand Prize honoree will also receive a framed copy of their original artwork and will tour Capitol Hill.
This year, calendars are available for $7. Shipping charges are included. All of the proceeds go to the 2017 contest winners' gifts. 

To order calendars, click here

NAHRO's CommitteesNatNews2

PNRC President Sunny Sha w held a  re gional meeting at the NAHRO National Conference in October.  One of the outcomes from this meeting was the request that we provide PNRC members information about "what's going on" at NAHRO.  We thought we would start  by providing information about the standing and national committees. This month we are highlighting the Budget and Administration Committee.

NAHRO has standing and national committees that focus on the major priorities of the membership. They provide a vehicle for members to share their experience and expertise as the association advocates for appropriate laws and policies that are sensitive to the needs of the people whom we serve, are financially and programatically viable for our industry, and are flexible, promote deregulation and local decision making. Committees also assist in the development of educational products and services that are available in a variety of mediums. They help collect and disseminate international and professional practices to NAHRO membership, which may be of value in policy formulation both nationally and locally. Committees provide critical and careful oversight of the association's fiscal and administrative practices, and establish polices related to NAHRO's professional certification and credentialing programs. Committee members are appointed by the President and Regional Presidents for two-year terms and must serve on the corresponding regional committee (except the International  Committee). Members of the BECT serve four-year terms that are staggered to provide continuity. Committee members represent the diversity of the NAHRO membership--agencies of varying sizes, types, and locations; some have experience, while some are relatively new to the industry and NAHRO. New members will bring fresh ideas and insights to the committee. Experienced members will provide guidance and perspective. All committee members must be associates from organizational members or allied individual members of NAHRO.  

Budget and Administration Committee

Renee Rooker, CME, SPHM-NAHRO-Fellow and Executive Director of the Walla Walla Housing Authority represents PNRC on this committee. 

The Budget and Administration Committee oversees the administration of the NAHRO budget. The committee recommends action to the Board of Governors on all budget proposals, budget revisions, and financial statements.  The Committee oversees the annual audit and presents the report to the Board of Governors.  B & A also recommends appropriate administrative policies where needed.  The committee meets at each conference and conducts monthly conference calls to discuss the financial statements, budget performance and administrative issues of the organization.
The committee is currently working with staff to refine the 2017 budget in order to present a revised budget proposal to the Board of Governors. 

NatNews3Awards of Merit in Housing and Community Development - 
2017 Application Process is NOW Open!

About the Program:

The NAHRO Agency Awards Program was created to give national recognition to the achievement and innovation of NAHRO agency/organizational members throughout the country; to provide additional opportunities to inform the public of the best in housing and community development; and to create a resource bank of information on significant, innovative activities performed by housing and redevelopment agencies and community development departments.  Since 1989, NAHRO has honored more than 5,900 programs.

The Agency Awards Program is a two-tiered program consisting of the Awards of Merit and the Awards of Excellence.  The first tier of the program, the Awards of Merit, are submitted to National NAHRO and sent to Regional Juries for review.  The second tier of the program, the Awards of Excellence, are selected from the Award of Merit winners nominated for an Award of Excellence by the Regional Juries.  They are sent to National Juries who may select up to 24 Awards of Excellence in a given year.

The Awards Application consists of two main parts.  A Program Summary that describes the program in 100 words or less and a Program Narrative that creates an overview of the program that addresses a set list of questions/topics in 2,400 words or less. 
For more information, please review the 2017 Awards Flyer.

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