The new year is a time when people often look ahead. They talk about their hopes, their resolutions, the things they want to achieve in the coming 365 days. On the cusp of the new year, we asked NeighborWorks America's senior vice presidents to share some of their hopes and wishes for 2022.
The organization's leaders have spent the last 12 months leading the national nonprofit through a pandemic, designing and administering a Housing Stability Counseling Program (HSCP) for nationwide implementation, creating new training opportunities and supporting nearly 250 network organizations across the country, in every state and including Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico.
Here is what they said:
"My hope is that the residents served by NeighborWorks America's network organizations will feel a deep sense of belonging and connection where they live, and that they, in turn, will help others find their sense of home and community."
-Kevin Morris, senior vice president, Organizational Assessment
"I'm optimistic that more practitioners will take advantage of the new training offerings to help sustaincommunities in 2022; that organizations will continue to have those ‘aha moments' in connecting with others in housing in service of improving our communities."
-Cristi Ford, senior vice president, Training
"We are experiencing a time of great need and opportunity. Many families continue to struggle financially as a result of the pandemic and are at risk of losing their homes. I know NeighborWorks America is committed to supporting people to remain in their homes through financial coaching, counseling and by connecting them to critical resources. As we enter the new year, it is also a time to be hopeful as communities reimagine what equity means for them and invest in resident-led, innovative solutions that remove barriers to accessing health, wealth and education and lead to new opportunities."
-Lee Anne Adams, senior vice president, National Initiatives
"I hope that 2022 shines a light on all the ways people in communities across the country are working together, strengthening neighborliness and social connection …I'm excited that NeighborWorks America's new strategic plan envisions more ways that we can partner with residents, communities and organizations to strengthen their comprehensive community developmen
t and resident leadership efforts toward this goal. And I look forward to assisting organizations captureand tell the story of their community impact."
-Brooke Finn, senior vice president, Evaluation, Leadership & Peer Learning
"My hope is that NeighborWorks America can continue to help our network organizations optimize pandemic recovery resources to serve the needs of people in their communities. This is a unique opportunity to provide a broad array of services and to build and maintain high-quality, affordable housing for the long term, resulting in stronger, more connected, more resilient communities for years to come."
-Kirsten Johnson-Obey, senior vice president, Public Policy and Legislative Affairs
"My greatest hope for the coming year is that the NeighborWorks network will have ample resources to continue the rehab and asset management work that ensures even more American families have a safe, healthy and comforting place to call home
. As we come to terms with the impact of this pandemic, we have a better appreciation for how crucial housing is to wellness and public health. I hope at NeighborWorks America, we can go the distance to respond to the housing crisis with bold, locally- informed solutions."
- Kate Titford, senior vice president, Deputy General Counsel
"My wish is that [NeighborWorks America's] new strategic plan provides the inspiration and focus needed to truly meet this moment. I hope that it unleashes creativity and innovation, accelerates the work of our network, leverages our unique strengths and moves the needle more than we ever thought possible to create opportunities for people to live in affordable homes, improve their lives and strengthen their communities. My great hope is that we proudly honor the legacy of Dorothy Richardson
and that our core belief – that all individuals and families deserve housing stability, to build wealth, and make decisions that impact their future – shines as clearly today as it did over 40 years ago.
-Tina R. Trent, senior vice president, Corporate Strategy and Impact
"Together, we were able to provide resources to our network organizations in this challenging time tokeep people from being evicted and celebrate this holiday season in their homes. I hope the new year brings more support to impact the lives of the communities that we serve. Wishing you all a successful and prosperous New Year."
-Yonas Tessema, senior vice president, Finance