News & Event
By James Bessette -December 20, 2019 1:19 am
EILEEN HAYES, CEO and president of Providence-based nonprofit Amos House, recently received the 2019 Murray Family Prize for Community Enrichment from the Rhode Island Foundation. The $50,000 award recognizes Hayes’ and Amos House’s efforts to help the homeless within Rhode Island.
To view the complete article, visit Providence Business News
Courtesy of Providence Business News
Providence, RI – RIHousing Executive Director Barbara Fields has been appointed Secretary/Treasurer of the National Council of State Housing Agencies (NCSHA), the agency announced today. Fields was appointed to serve a one-year term on the NCHSA Executive Board at its annual meeting last week.
“Today, Rhode Island and the nation are facing a housing crisis,” said Fields. “I am honored to be elected to serve on the board of the National Council of State Housing Finance Agencies, and have the opportunity to work with them to create and execute policies that will help address that crisis.”
“The housing finance agencies (HFAs) that make up the NCHSA are a strong and vibrant network that can deliver federal resources and leverage private resources to meet the current crisis and build stronger, healthier communities across America,” Fields added.
Since assuming her current role at RIHousing in 2015, the agency has significantly expanded it initiatives in homeownership, development and mortgage servicing, adding the State of Maine as customer, among others. It has also registered improvements in its bond ratings and greatly expanded its partnerships in the community. Fields previously served on NCSHA’s Board in 2015 and brings nearly three decades of experience in expanding access to housing, building strong communities, and championing economic development efforts to her new role as Secretary/Treasurer.
NCSHA is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization created by the nation’s state Housing Finance Agencies (HFAs) more than 40 years ago. Its mission is to advance, through advocacy and education, the efforts of the nation’s state HFAs and their partners. NCSHA’s members are the HFAs of every state, the District of Columbia, New York City, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, as well as over 300 affiliate members in the housing finance field. The (Executive) Board is responsible for setting goals and developing strategies to further NCSHA’s initiatives.
RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations.
January 14, 2019
Fields will continue in her role as Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director until her contract expires March 1.
“Barbara Fields has had a decades long commitment to Rhode Island and to the complex housing and homelessness challenges we face,” said Governor Raimondo. “I want to thank Barbara for her four years of service at RIHousing and her commitment to the people of our state. I wish her well in her future endeavors.”
Fields gave the following statement:
“Recently, I was selected by my colleagues from across the country to serve on the Executive Board of the National Council of State Housing Agencies, a national organization uniquely positioned to address the country’s housing crisis. Since accepting this appointment, I have been presented with a number of opportunities that would allow me to continue championing housing issues on a larger scale. Therefore, I will not continue in my role as Executive Director of RIHousing when my contract expires on March 1.
It has been a privilege to serve as the Executive Director of RIHousing for the past four years. During my time here, we have accomplished a great deal. We’ve invested hundreds of millions of dollars into the Rhode Island economy, financed the development of desperately needed affordable apartments, and helped a record number of Rhode Islanders purchase their first home. I could not be more proud of the amazing team here at RIHousing.
I want to thank the Board and the RIHousing team, a wonderful group of committed public servants who work hard every day to help Rhode Islanders realize the dream of a safe, warm home for themselves and their families. I also want to thank Governor Raimondo for the opportunity to turn RIHousing around, place it on a path where it can achieve its full potential and is now poised to do the enormous amount of work in the area of housing that remains to be done here.”
During her tenure, RIHousing achieved its highest mortgage volume in 20 years. Under her leadership the corporation launched new, innovative financing tools to help more Rhode Islanders have a place to call home including the Ocean State Grad Grant, First Down and a Middle Market rental program. Fields also helped improve the agency’s bond rating while expanding loan servicing operations by 40 percent.
In October of 2018, Fields was selected by colleagues from across the country to serve on the Executive Board of the National Council of State Housing Agencies, a national organization uniquely positioned to address the country’s housing crisis. Following her departure, Fields intends to weigh opportunities at the national level.
The RIHousing Board of Commissioner Chairman Nicolas Retsinas and the Executive Office of Commerce will convene a search committee for Fields’ replacement.
RIHousing works to ensure that all people who live in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. RIHousing provides loans, grants, education and assistance to help Rhode Islanders find, rent, buy, build and keep a good home. Created by the General Assembly in 1973, RIHousing is a self-sustaining corporation and receives no state funding for operations. For more information regarding RIHousing visit www.RIHousing.com or follow us @RIHousing on Facebook and Twitter.
Boston– October 30, 2017 – Santander US CEO Scott Powell today announced Santander’s “Inclusive Communities” plan, Santander Bank’s new $11 billion, agreement with the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) to increase lending, community development, and charitable giving. The plan outlines Santander’s commitment to communities across its eight-state northeastern U.S. footprint for 2017 through 2021, during which time Santander will increase its Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) activity by 50 percent and triple its investment in charitable grants.
Over the next five years, Santander will provide:
- $4.2 billion in residential mortgage loans for low- to moderate income families
- $1.9 billion in small business lending
- $3 billion in community development lending
“This plan is the foundation of Santander’s approach to supporting the communities where we live and work,” said Powell, CEO of Santander US, the Bank’s U.S. holding company. “We recognize that Santander’s success is directly linked to the prosperity of our communities’ families, businesses and neighborhoods. By increasing lending, investments and financial education opportunities, we hope to boost the long-term economic success of low- and moderate-income individuals and neighborhoods.”
Powell announced “Inclusive Communities” at a meeting this morning in downtown Boston where he was joined by officials from the City of Boston, other public officials, and National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) President and CEO John Taylor.
"This is a good day for people in New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and my home state of Massachusetts,” said John Taylor, NCRC President and CEO. I want to applaud Santander for committing 11 billion in investments for underserved neighborhoods over the next five years. Santander’s leadership showed a special dedication to working with community leaders and better understanding the credit needs in the areas they serve. We are very pleased that this commitment, and especially the 10 new bank branches, will help individuals build wealth and neighborhoods build their economies."
“Inclusive Communities” was developed with significant input from and collaboration with more than 100 community-based organizations throughout the Bank’s footprint. Supported and facilitated by the NCRC, an extensive ten-month long process helped identify emerging community needs and strategies aimed at addressing the challenges faced by underserved communities in Santander’s key markets.
Read a in depth summary of Santander's "Inclusive Communities" agreement here
In addition to the Bank’s financial commitments, Santander is establishing a national Community Advisory Board (CAB) comprising representatives of not-for-profit community development organizations and financial inclusion advocates, as well as community development policy organizations, and representatives of local or state economic development or housing agencies. Members of the CAB are:
The Bank is also establishing statewide/regional advisory boards in its footprint to ensure ongoing community input and will be enhancing its current Community Development and CRA teams with the addition of 17 new positions in the coming years.
Local leaders applaud the agreement:
"ANHD applauds Santander for creating this new CRA plan. They listened to over 100 community based organizations to create a plan that is reflective of community needs throughout the bank's footprint, including New York City. We also appreciate the creation of national and regional community advisory boards, which put the structure in place to implement, monitor, and adjust the plan to ensure it has the greatest impact. We look forward to working with the bank to put this plan into action,” Benjamin Dulchin, Executive Director, Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development.
“New Jersey Citizen Action has had a longtime partnership with Santander Bank and its predecessor, Sovereign Bank. The bank's $11 billion commitment in mortgages, small business loans and community development lending will provide loans, access to capital and affordable housing for thousands of New Jerseyeans. I look forward to serving on the bank's National Community Advisory Board and working with Santander to ensuring that these dollars are reinvested in our communities,” Phyllis Salowe-Kaye, Executive Director, New Jersey Citizen Action.
“The effort behind this plan will ensure that those who live and operate businesses in developing neighborhoods can benefit, including immigrants and communities of color,” John Chin, Executive Director, Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation.
“As a leading Center for Independent Living for People with Disabilities in the greater Philadelphia Area, we applaud Santander's commitment to the community and our desire to increase affordable and accessible housing opportunities for the many Seniors and People with Disabilities who we serve throughout the region,” Thomas H. Earle, Esquire, Chief Executive Officer, Liberty Resources, Inc.
"Santander has had a long and impactful presence in the Greater Reading community. We look forward to continue working with Santander Bank and its team members in implementing this comprehensive plan, particularly in downtown Reading, where they have a large workforce and occupy almost 1/4 million sf of office space, in addition to having its name on the Santander Arena & the Santander Performing Arts Center," Edward Swoyer, President, Greater Berks Development Fund.
“This is an exciting and groundbreaking agreement that will improve our communities and transform lives. It demonstrates that banks and the communities they serve can thrive together when they work together. We congratulate Santander, NCRC, and the dozens of community based groups who worked so hard to make this happen,” Joseph Kriesberg, President & CEO, Mass. Association of Community Development Corporations.
“We believe this agreement with Santander Bank will go a long way in helping LMI communities in Waterbury CT. It provides a framework and capital for the hard-working people of the Northend section of town to rebuild a vibrant community,” Pastor Rodney Wade, President, Concerned Black Clergy Council of Waterbury.
“The Community Reinvestment Act is an important tool that empowers people in many ways. For example, the act can be used to conduct community development. As far as I am concerned, it protects LMI communities from senseless crime and violence,” Angela Mciver, Chief Executive Officer, Fair Husing Rights Center in Southeastern Pensylvania.
“This was a unique opportunity to work with fellow community organizations to determine priority needs and where we want Santander to direct their resources to help address those needs. It was also an opportunity for Santander to gain a better understanding of their community responsibility and measures needed to implement in the future. Represented organizations put a great deal of time and care into this process to ensure fairness and optimize outcomes for the communities we serve,” Majeedah Rashid, Chief Operating Officer, Nicetown Community Development Corporation.
"MAHA looks forward to continuing our partnership with Santander in reaching low- and moderate-income first-time homebuyers as we both seek to close the large racial wealth gap in Massachusetts", Symone Crawford, board president, Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance.
"Obviously, Home Ownership is the foundation upon which strong, thriving communities are based. We welcome the proactive steps being taken by Santander and we look forward to many years of success. Together, we can be the change that our communities need - one house at a time, one block at a time, one neighborhood at a time..." Stephen T. Gieringer, Executive Director, Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Berks, Inc.
Partners in the Community Benefits Agreement:
Santander Bank, N.A. is one of the country’s largest retail and commercial banks with more than $79 billion in assets. With its corporate offices in Boston, the Bank’s 9,700 employees, more than 650 branches, 2,100 ATMs and 2.1 million customers are principally located in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware. The Bank is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Madrid-based Banco Santander, S.A. (NYSE: SAN) - one of the most respected banking groups in the world with more than 125 million customers in the U.S., Europe, and Latin America. It is managed by Santander Holdings USA, Inc., Banco Santander’s intermediate holding company in the U.S. For more information on Santander Bank, please visit www.santanderbank.com.
Santander Holdings USA, Inc. (SHUSA) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Madrid-based Banco Santander, S.A. (NYSE: SAN) (Santander), one of the most respected banking groups in the world with more than 125 million customers in the U.K., Europe, Latin America and the U.S. As the intermediate holding company for Santander’s U.S. businesses, SHUSA includes six financial companies with more than 17,500 employees, 5.2 million customers and assets of over $135 billion. These include Santander Bank, N.A., one of the country’s largest retail and commercial banks by deposits; Santander ConsumerUSA Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SC), an auto finance and consumer lending company; Banco Santander International of Miami; Banco Santander Puerto Rico;Santander Securities LLC of Boston; and Santander Investment Securities Inc. of New York.
FULL TIME (35 hrs/wk)
The Childhood Lead Action Project is looking for an experienced community organizer to facilitate local-level, community-driven advocacy campaigns aimed at eliminating lead poisoning in Rhode Island. The new organizer will assist with efforts already underway in several areas of the state, and take primary responsibility for moving our efforts forward in Pawtucket, Central Falls, and Woonsocket.Fluency/high level of proficiency in both Spanish and English is essential.
The organizer will be responsible for a variety of activities to support campaign and organizational goals. Major advocacy campaign decisions will be made collectively by coalition members and staff.
TRAINING AND SUPERVISION
The Community Organizer will receive ongoing training and supervision from our Executive Director. Initial training will be provided in the form of assigned readings, discussions, online research exercises, and opportunities to shadow or interview a variety of lead professionals and other contacts.
The Childhood Lead Action Project is an equal opportunity employer. People of color, women, and LGBT individuals are strongly encouraged to apply.
Application open until position is filled.
MORE ABOUT US
Founded in 1992, the Childhood Lead Action Project works to eliminate childhood lead poisoning in Rhode Island through community-based education, parent support, and advocacy. We are the only organization in Rhode Island devoted primarily to this pervasive environmental injustice - one of the most serious environmental health problems affecting children in our state. We coordinate grassroots campaigns that seek to address the problem at its roots, holding those in power accountable and asserting the community's right to safe housing. We are confident that our work has been a major catalyst for the significant decrease in childhood lead poisoning in Rhode Island over the last two decades. Our accomplishments have earned local and national recognition, including a prestigious Children's Environmental Health Excellence Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
It is very important to us that racism, income inequality and other forms of social injustice be recognized as root causes of lead poisoning. Additionally, it is important for us to try to do something about this reality on a practical level, through the decisions we make as a group - during hiring, goal-setting, campaign strategy, etc. And it is a priority for our work to be led by and to benefit those at the greatest risk for lead poisoning. Our most successful campaigns involve parents or grandparents of lead poisoned children in strong leadership roles, supported by a team of allies with helpful personal experience and professional expertise (such as community lawyers, social workers, medical professionals, environmental activists, etc).
Courtesy of Childhood Lead Action Project
Courtesy of ConvergenceRI
By Nicole Dotzenrod -January 19, 2018 2:08 am
ERICA LAROS of Laros Law in Providence was awarded the 2017 Dorothy Lohmann Community Service Award for her work on behalf of the Childhood Lead Action Project. The Rhode Island Bar Association’s award honors lawyers who make noteworthy contributions in time and effort to a Rhode Island nonprofit organization on a strictly volunteer basis.
What is the Childhood Lead Action Project? Why did you choose to dedicate your time and resources to its mission? The Childhood Lead Action Project is the only nonprofit of its kind in the state – they are 100 percent dedicated to lead-poisoning prevention. We live in an old housing stock in Rhode Island and lead remains an issue in our water, paint and soil. Lead poisoning can have devastating effects on children – some have never developed language or remained permanently illiterate.
Courtesy of Providence Business News
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