Accessing Affordable Housing

Sunday, October 31, 2021
3:30 pm – 5:00 pm EDT

Registration Closed
Welcome to a virtual event jointly sponsored by two close neighbors in the Northern Virginia faith community, Lewinsville Presbyterian Church and Redeemer Lutheran Church. The topic is “Accessing Affordable Housing” and it will be presented on Sunday, October 31, 2021, at 3:30pm to 5:00pm EDT via Zoom, as part of the Pathways out of Poverty in Northern Virginia series. The event features Christopher Fay, Executive Director of Homestretch, and Carmen Romero, President and CEO of Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing (APAH), and will be moderated by Jim Edmondson,Principal of E&G Group. James Foster, Professor at the George Washington University, will introduce the series.
About the event. In this first event of the series, we examine a key barrier to escaping poverty in Northern Virginia: Affordable housing. James Foster will set the stage by describing the multidimensional view of poverty and showing how the lack of affordable housing is a key burden facing poorer Northern Virginians. Christopher Fay will walk us through the multidimensional approach used by Homestretch to help homeless families access affordable housing and expand their capabilities. Carmen Romero will discuss APAH’s strategy to provide quality rental communities for thousands of low-income residents, and to keep them affordable. Jim Edmondson, the moderator of the session, who has extensive experience in owning and managing affordable apartments, will moderate the discussion and facilitate the Q&A session following the formal presentations.
About the Series. Pathways out of Poverty in Northern Virginia begins with the knowledge that affluent Northern Virginia is home to many poor families and individuals who are confronted daily with a multitude of simultaneous challenges. The goal of the series is to understand these barriers, and to explore policies, programs, and individual actions that can help remove the barriers facing our neighbors.

About the Panelists

Christopher Fay is executive director of Homestretch, a program for homeless families in Northern Virginia. Homestretch has earned numerous awards and media attention for its outstanding outcomes in helping homeless families transform their lives. Before Homestretch, he served as director for Delancey Street Replication of the Milton Eisenhower Foundation. Delancey Street is widely recognized as the most innovative and successful program for ex-offenders in the world. Mr. Fay is also an illustrator of over a dozen children’s books including the award-winning “Inigo.” His original screenplay for the 2004 Showtime movie “Carry Me Home” also earned him a Humanitas Prize nomination and an Emmy Award nomination. He has served on many boards including for the Children of Uganda and on the board of trustees for the Public Defender Service of the District of Columbia. He has a bachelor’s degree from Carnegie-Mellon University and a master’s degree from Columbia University.
Carmen Romero is the President and CEO of Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing (APAH). Ms. Romero joined APAH in 2011 and has spent
the last decade overseeing the real estate team contributing to the creation or preservation of over 1,000 new affordable housing units in the DC region with additional developments underway today in Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Montgomery counties. Under Ms. Romero’s leadership, APAH’s Real Estate Development team has delivered several innovative, award-winning affordable housing properties, including Queens Court, Gilliam Place (a partnership with Arlington Presbyterian Church), Columbia Hills, and The Springs. In addition, she oversaw APAH’s projects under active construction in Arlington. This includes Lucille & Bruce Terwilliger Place, a 160-unit affordable property born out of an innovative partnership with the American Legion Post 139, and a joint venture with E&G Group to develop 98 units of affordable senior housing in Loudoun County (Loudoun View Senior Residences). Prior to joining APAH in 2011, Ms. Romero was a Director of Real Estate Development and public- private partnerships at Clark Construction. She began her career at Marriott International. She has a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and an MBA from the Wharton School.

About the Moderator

James H. Edmondson, Principal of E&G Group, has over thirty years of experience in real estate development and finance. In 1981 he persuaded a former colleague and then Touche Ross principal, Tom Gallagher, to join him in forming Edmondson & Gallagher with the purpose of acquiring and redeveloping post-war apartments in the D. C. area using the new financing tools and tax laws. The firm grew a portfolio of approximately 3,000 deed-restricted units and created a property management company that continues. E&G became expert in compliance issues and the rehabilitation of apartment buildings. The firm and its principals continue to develop, own and manage affordable apartments. Edmondson is active in local affairs in Northern Virginia. He was a founding member of AHOME, an affordable housing advocacy group; he was vice chair of the Health Systems Agency of Northern Virginia for many years; he has served as an elder of Lewinsville Presbyterian Church; and in 2009 Governor Kaine re-appointed him as a consumer representative to the Virginia Board of Health. Edmondson has an A.B. in Economics from Princeton, where he is active in alumni affairs, and an M.B.A. from the University of Virginia’s Darden School.

About the Convener

James E. Foster is the Oliver T. Carr Professor of International Affairs and Professor of Economics at the George Washington University. Professor Foster’s research focuses on welfare economics — using economic tools to evaluate and enhance the wellbeing of people. His work underlies many well-known social indices directing public action including the global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) published annually by the UNDP in the Human Development Report and dozens of national MPIs from Paraguay to Pakistan. Prof. Foster has a bachelor’s degree from New College of Florida and a doctorate from Cornell. He has served as an Elder at Lewinsville Presbyterian Church.
Events in this Series
Accessing Affordable Housing (Oct. 31)
Improving Financial Literacy
Reducing Barriers to Education and Training
Expunging Misdemeanors
Expanding Community Engagement