HUD Names New Leadership at HANO

Local advisory panel established to counsel experienced turn-around team

WASHINGTON – As U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan accelerates the recovery of the New Orleans Housing Authority (HANO), he announced today a new leadership team that will take charge of HUD’s efforts to repair the city’s housing agency, troubled for more than a decade. HUD also announced today the creation of an advisory panel that will provide counsel to the receivership team.

“As I stated earlier this week, the New Orleans Housing Authority’s trouble did not begin with Hurricane Katrina. It has been plagued with mismanagement for a number of years which means HUD must go above and beyond our usual steps to turn around a troubled housing agency,” said Donovan. “We are confident the new team that will be on the ground at the end of the month will continue the work already begun to give the people of New Orleans a housing agency that’s accountable and well-run.”

On October 30th Gilmore Kean, LLC, a management consultant services firm that specializes in turning around public housing agencies, will be in New Orleans to lead day-to-day operations and begin its assessment of HANO’s current operations to determine priorities and next steps for the agency. The team will report directly to HUD Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing Sandra Henriquez.

David Gilmore, who will serve as the administrative receiver, will lead the team. He brings nearly 40 years of experience as a senior level administrator in public housing. Prior assignments include deputy administrator for the Boston Housing Authority, and CEO of housing authorities in Seattle and San Francisco. From 1995 to 2000, Gilmore was the court?appointed receiver of the District of Columbia Housing Authority, where he won national recognition for restoring the nation’s worst performing housing authority. Gilmore is currently the Transportation Administrator for the D.C. Public School Transportation Division.

Assisting Gilmore will be, Chief Financial Officer Diana Smith, Deputy General Manager for Administration Leslie Dews and Deputy GM for Operations Keith Pettigrew. A general manager will be named in the coming weeks.

HUD also announced the creation of a local HANO Advisory Panel that will serve as a sounding board to provide counsel as the receivership team develops clear, identifiable, measureable steps to correct HANO’s deficiencies.

Panel members are:

  • John Alford, Principal Langston Hughes Public Charter School

  • Reverend D.R. Berryhill Sr., Pastor, First Zion Baptist Church

  • Karen B. DeSalvo, MD, MPH, MSc, Vice Dean of Community Affairs and Health Policy, Tulane University School of Medicine.

  • Martin Gutierrez, Executive Director Neighborhood and Community Services, Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans

  • Nick Harris, Assistant Vice President, Community and Economic Development and Executive Director, Dillard University Community Development Corporation

  • Michael Hecht, President/CEO, Greater New Orleans, Inc

  • Ellen M. Lee, Senior Vice President of Programs, Greater New Orleans Foundation

  • Maggie Merrill, Director of Policy, City of New Orleans

  • Rosalind Peychaud, Deputy Chief of Staff, Office of U.S. Congressman Joseph Cao

  • LaVerne Saulny, Regional Manager, Office of U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu

  • Laura Tuggle, Managing Attorney, Housing Law Unit at Southeast Louisiana Legal Services/New Orleans Legal Assistance

  • Tracie Washington, Managing Director of Louisiana Justice Institute

  • Cynthia A. Wiggins, President/CEO, Guste Homes Resident Management Corporation

“The people selected for this panel have proven themselves in their commitment and service to the people of New Orleans,” said Henriquez, who heads up HUD’s Office of Public and Indian Housing. “We want them to provide their input as we work together to rebuild HANO.”

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