The Tennessee Housing Conference is proud to welcome housing industry experts for our 2019 event.

2019 Speakers:

Thom Amdur
Executive Director
National Housing & Rehabilitation

Tom Amdur directs the association’s day-to-day operations including legislative and regulatory advocacy, committee activities, conferences and events, publications and strategic planning. Amdur also serves as the Executive Director of the Tennessee Developers Council, a state-wide trade association for affordable housing developers and professionals active in Tennessee. In 2013 he spearheaded the launch of NH&RA’s Preservation through Energy Efficiency Project, a major educational initiative supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. He serves on the Board of Directors for International Center for Appropriate & Sustainable Technology (iCAST) as well as the Advisory Board for its ResourceSmart program, a turn-key, cost-effective, green rehab provider for multifamily affordable and market-rate housing communities and nonprofit facilities. Amdur is a frequent speaker at affordable housing, sustainable development and tax credit industry events and has been published in a variety of industry journals including Tax Credit Advisor, Independent Banker, and the Novogradac Journal of Tax Credit Housing. Amdur graduated Magna Cum Laude from Tufts University with a double major in Political Science and History. 

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Andrew Aurand
Vice President for Research
National Low Income Housing Coalition

Andrew Aurand is Vice President for Research at the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), a membership organization dedicated to achieving socially just public policy that assures people with the lowest incomes in the United States have affordable and decent homes. Andrew leads NLIHC’s research team that annually documents the housing needs of low income renters (published in The Gap and Out of Reach) and conducts research that informs the organization’s advocacy and policy work. He co-manages the National Housing Preservation Database, along with the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation. Prior to joining NLIHC, Andrew served as a faculty member in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at Florida State University.

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West Beibers
The Commonwealth Group

West Beibers is a 32 year veteran of the mortgage banking industry. During that time, he has worked and managed in a variety of areas including production, underwriting, quality control, risk management, servicing, and regulatory compliance. West is both an FHA Direct Endorsement and VA Automatic Underwriter and has underwritten for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for over 25 years. West holds the Certified Mortgage Banker (CMB) designation from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) and is active with the MBA at the National and State Levels. West serves as an instructor for the MBA School of Mortgage Banking teaching courses on Regulatory Compliance, Quality Control, and Portfolio Administration. In addition, West is in demand at colleges and universities where he speaks on the topics of mortgage lending and the mortgage markets. West is currently President of The Commonwealth Group, a consulting firm to the mortgage banking industry that specializes in quality control, regulatory compliance, fair lending, internal audit, and litigation services.

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Emily Baron Bernstein
Vice President of Project Management
McCormack Baron Salazar
As a Vice President of Project Management, Ms. Bernstein leads the implementation of mixed-income and mixed-use projects, leveraging and securing project financing, and coordinating public and private partners. Her role includes client relationship management with local partners, city and agency staff and elected officials, contract negotiation, oversight of project conceptualization and master planning, design and construction review, and managing schedules and deadlines to ensure timely and efficient delivery. Ms. Bernstein’s experience extends beyond managing development and construction into the financial structuring of both 9% and 4% low-income housing tax credit deals, as well as mixed-finance transactions. Ms. Bernstein holds a Master of Arts in Urban Planning from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. She is a board member of St. Louis Artworks.


Kim Grant Brown
Grant & Company

Kim Grant Brown is a 3rd generation homebuilder that got her start in construction while she was still a student at the University of Tennessee.  She established her home building company, Kim Grant Homes LLC, in 2005 and has built and sold over 300 homes in Shelby County and North Mississippi.  Along with managing the construction company, Kim is partners with her family in her real estate firm, Grant & Co. Realtors.  She is also a licensed real estate agent and an active Member of the Memphis Area Association of Realtors.  In 2012, Kim built her first apartment complex, Grand Island, located on Mud Island.  Kim is heavily involved in the home builders association and was the youngest and first female to be elected President of the 70 year old West TN Homes Builder’s Association.  Governor Bill Haslam appointed Kim to the THDA Board of Director’s in 2015, and then went on to appoint her as the Board Chairman in 2017.  In her free time Kim loves to snow ski, go to the lake,  and hang out with her husband and 2 children, Charlotte(3) and Locke(1).

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Russell Catron
HUD Housing Counselor Coordinator
TN Housing Development Agency
Russell has been passionate about helping people since his early 20s. He has a background in real estate, real estate appraisals and new construction sales. Russell started his non-profit housing career in 2007 at HOPE, Inc., a CHDO in Virginia. He has almost 9 years of housing counseling and affordable housing development/rehab experience. Russell has served as pastor for several churches, including him and his wife starting a church in their home for special needs families. His background includes experience in loan origination and processing, training new loan officers and CRA loan origination. Russell, his wife (Iva), as well as his 3 boys (Logan, Hunter & Seth), recently moved to Cookeville and getting settled in their new space. Russell enjoys reading, music, soccer and other sports, podcasts and spending time with his wife and kids.

Alicia Cone
Dr. Alicia Cone, Ph.D.
Director, Grant Program
Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities
Alicia has worked in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities for over twenty-five years, in TN., VA., and MS. Her primary work experience has been in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities, with a focus on program evaluation, grants management, leadership development, and customized employment. Additional work experience has included direct support professional work in day and residential services, and independent support coordination. Alicia has also taught classes at the University of Mississippi in the area of Educational Psychology, and conducted research into disability policy and practice at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability (formerly RRTC on Supported Employment). Before coming to the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities, Alicia’s previous position was the Director of Independent Support Coordination for the Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.

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Melanie Cordell
Chief Executive Officer
Tennessee Valley Coalition for the Homeless

Ms. Cordell joined the Tennessee Valley Coalition for the Homeless (TVCH) as a board member in 2005, then was hired as the Administrator in Nov 2010 and became the Chief Executive Officer in August 2012. Under her senior leadership, the organization has permanently housed more than 1500 households. Cordell is the founder of the Rural Homeless Institute, established in 2018, for generating best practices to reduce the frequency and duration of homelessness in rural communities. Melanie advocates for individuals who are homeless or at risk of being homeless as well as building the capacity of nonprofit organizations who work with the homeless. She holds a B.S. in Organizational Leadership from East TN State University, graduated from the Consortium of Social Enterprise Effectiveness from UT, and has a 2-year Certificate of Theology from World Changers Bible Institute. Cordell currently resides in Campbell County, TN with her husband, Chad and their two daughters, Madeline and Kate.

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Patrick Curry
Project Manager – SmartMH program
Next Step

Patrick Curry serves as the project manager for the SmartMH program, where his responsibilities include developing the key lender partnerships and affordable financing programs homebuyers need for manufactured housing. Patrick has 17 years mortgage bank experience, including sales and operations management. His background in residential lending began in 1992 as an originator of manufactured home loans. He went on to open his own correspondent lending company, funding loans secured to site-built and manufactured homes throughout a 23-state footprint. He holds a B.A. in Business Administration from Hanover College.

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T.K. Davis
Professor, School of Architecture
University of TN, Knoxville

T.K. Davis FAIA is a Professor at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. From 2004-2008, he represented the university as Design Director at its Nashville Civic Design Center. Since 2008, he and his service-learning and outreach engagement students have worked exclusively on civic design projects for Nashville. In 2013, Davis received one of six C. Peter McGrath University Community Outreach Exemplary Program Awards, and a national Collaborative Practice Award from the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture. He was a co-recipient in 2016 of the AIA Tennessee Samuel Morgan Lifetime Service Award for Contributions to Architecture in the Public Realm.

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David M. Dworkin
President and CEO
National Housing Conference

David M. Dworkin joined NHC as president and CEO in January 2018. Prior to joining NHC, David worked as a senior policy advisor at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, where he advised senior Treasury Department officials on matters related to housing and community development. His expertise includes credit availability, housing finance reform, mortgage servicing, affordable housing, access to credit, residential housing vacancy, abandonment and demolition and community stabilization strategies. He also served as a member of the White House’s Detroit interagency team where his responsibilities included developing and implementing strategies to assist in the City of Detroit’s revitalization. Previously, he managed the Capital Magnet Fund (CMF) at the Treasury Department’s CDFI Fund, which disbursed $80 million in grants for economic revitalization and community development through investment in and assistance to community development financial institutions (CDFIs) and nonprofit housing organizations. Prior to joining the Treasury Department, he was CEO and founder of Affiniti Strategies, served in a number of leadership positions at Fannie Mae, and served in several capacities in the administration of President George H. W. Bush. Mr. Dworkin was a freelance foreign correspondent and photographer for The Detroit News, where he covered the war in Afghanistan.  In 1984, he was the first Western journalist to cross the Safed Koh mountain range with the rebels fighting in the region known as Tora Bora. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan and lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife Hayley Hoffman.


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Gary Gaston


Nashville Civic Design Center

Gary Gaston is the CEO of the Nashville Civic Design Center, and serves as Assistant Professor of Practice at the University of Tennessee Knoxville College of Architecture + Design. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from UTK, and a M.Ed. in Community Development and Action from Vanderbilt University. Gaston helped lead numerous planning and design efforts for NCDC, including its visionary The Plan of Nashville: Avenues to a Great City, published in 2005. Gaston served as executive producer of the National Endowment for the Arts funded documentary film Design Your Neighborhood, and co-authored two books, Moving Tennessee Forward: Models for Connecting Communities (2012), and Shaping the Healthy Community: The Nashville Plan, published by Vanderbilt University Press in 2016. Gaston is a TEDx Nashville Fellow, his talk on “Improving Public Health Through Community Design” can be viewed here. He received the Tau Sigma Delta Honor Society Silver Medal “for extraordinary efforts to advance the field of design in the region” in 2016, and was recognized as a “Next American Vanguard” by Next City Magazine in 2010. Gaston serves on the board of directors of The District and Nashville Health steering committee. He lives in Germantown with his dog Lotti.

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Brenda Grauer
Project Director 
Senior Homeownership Preservation Project
Brenda Grauer has more than 25 years’ experience in the nonprofit affordable housing sector. She is the Project Director for the Senior Homeownership Preservation Project (SHOPP), a program that provides housing counseling services to reverse mortgage borrowers facing foreclosure. She is a reverse mortgage counselor and has provided more than 4,000 counseling sessions since 2004. She provides technical assistance and training to housing counselors and counseling agencies in the areas of reverse mortgages, senior services, pre-purchase, post-purchase, default, foreclosure, financial management, rental counseling, and program management. Ms. Grauer served as a Senior Housing Policy Advisor and Assistant Attorney General for the Office of the Illinois Attorney General where she created a statewide Homeowner Helpline for consumers at risk of foreclosure. As Senior Attorney at the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago’s Senior Housing Law Project, she represented hundreds of seniors facing loss of their homes due to predatory lending practices. Brenda is a graduate of Northwestern University and the University of Illinois, College of Law, and is a member of the Illinois Bar Association.

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Martina Guilfoil
President and CEO
Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise

Martina Guilfoil is the president and chief executive officer of Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise (CNE). Martina provides inspirational leadership for complex organizations resulting in heightened prosperity and overall community impact. Martina has focused on building and supporting thriving neighborhoods for over 30 years through community development programs that generate millions of dollars in private and public investments to spur new real estate development, create equal access to capital and promote community engagement. Martina sails a sailboat, loves salsa music, and has never broken 100 in golf. She earned a BA from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA and completed the Achieving Excellence in CommunityDevelopment program at Harvard University.

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Taylor Hays
HomeOwnership Center Manager
HomeSource East TN
Taylor Hays has been the HomeOwnership Center Manager for HomeSource East Tennessee since 2014. Prior to his time at HomeSource Taylor worked as a licensed Mortgage Lender, and as a licensed Real Estate Agent, a license he currently holds. A Knoxville native, Taylor is a graduate of the University of Tennessee. Post-college, he enjoyed an almost 10 year career in Guest Services and Special Events for Walt Disney World.

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Daryl Hill
Director of Counseling
Woodbine Community Organization
Daryl Hill is the Director of Counseling at Woodbine Community Organization, where he oversees several counseling and educational program, including the Super Senior Tuesday program. That program informs and empowers seniors regarding importance issues in their lives. Currently, he is also the chair of the Housing Counselor and Educator of Tennessee (HCET) and enjoys being involved with several other advising committees and coalitions to promote various aspects of affordable sustainable housing. Daryl is a HUD certified housing counselor with multiple counseling certificates including HECM (Reverse Mortgage). He graduated back in the day with a B. S. in
Managerial Economic from U. C. Davis in California.

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Shanna Singh Hughey

Shanna Singh Hughey is the president of ThinkTennessee. Previously, she was a senior advisor to Nashville Mayor Karl Dean and the director of the Mayor’s Office of New Americans. She has also served as nominations counsel on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, an associate at O’Melveny & Myers, and press secretary to U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow. Shanna’s work in her community includes serving on the boards of the Nashville Chapter of the American Constitution Society and Impact Nashville, as well as on the Girls on the Run advisory board. She is a 2017 graduate of Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law and a member of the 2018-19 class of Leadership Tennessee.

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Jayna Johnson
Homebuyer Education Manager
TN Housing Development Agency
Jayna Johnson is Homebuyer Education Manager at Tennessee Housing Development Agency. She recently celebrated her 10 year anniversary with the agency. Jayna leads of team of 5, which include the team of HUD Housing Counselors. She also lead the team in the submission of the HUD application, to become a HUD approved agency and is proud of the great work the team and network provides are doing across the state. In her spare time, Jayna enjoys spending time with her husband and 2 sweet baby girls.

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Nat Kendall-Taylor
Chief Executive Officer
FrameWorks Institute

Nat is chief executive officer at the FrameWorks Institute. Nat oversees the organization’s pioneering, research-based approach to strategic communications, which uses methods from the social and behavioral sciences to measure how people understand complex socio-political issues and tests ways to reframe them to drive social change. As CEO, he leads a multi-disciplinary team of social scientists and communications practitioners who investigate ways to apply innovative framing research methods to social issues and train nonprofit organizations to put the findings into practice. Click here to read a recent article Nat co-authored with Tiffany Manuel, Creating Affordable Housing Opportunities Means Talking Equity.

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John Krenson
Chief Executive Officer
Operation Stand Down Tennessee

John Krenson is Chief Executive Officer of Operation Stand Down Tennessee. He served 30 years in the Tennessee Army National Guard completing his career as a Colonel and Brigade Commander. John has an extensive civilian professional career as well. Colonel Krenson commanded the 2 Squadron, 278th ACR in support of response operations in Louisiana following Hurricane Gustav in 2008, and during the unit’s deployment to Iraq in 2010 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He also served in Afghanistan in 2003 -2004 and in Mississippi in support of response operations following Hurricane Katrina. His military awards include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, Iraq Campaign Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, NATO Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal with Star, Meritorious Service Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters among other Federal and State awards. John is a graduate of the US Army War College class of 2012. His final military assignment was as Brigade Commander of the 30th Troop Command Tennessee Army National Guard. He also launched his own independent consulting practice in 2004. Most recently, John worked as the vice president of consulting for the Rainmaker Companies and he is currently on the THDA Board of Directors. He was ordained a Permanent Deacon in the Catholic Church in 1999 and served the Cathedral of the Incarnation and Christ the King parishes. He is a native Nashvillian and the son of Gilbert and Ann Krenson. He and his wife Carrie have two beautiful children.

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Eddie Latimer

Chief Executive Officer
Affordable Housing Resources

Mr. Latimer is the founder of Nashville’s oldest non-profit housing development corporation, Affordable Housing Resources, Inc.(AHR) and he created and or helped develop all of AHR’s lines of business. For over 25 years AHR’s HUD homebuyer education classes have helped over 16,000 people buy their first home. AHR developed a full cycle lending continuum offering various 1st mortgage loans and downpayment and closing cost loans to first time, lower income and minority homebuyers. AHR has been Nashville’s largest non-profit housing development corporation constructing and rehabbing over 1400 quality, affordable homes and townhomes. Mr. Latimer is the Chair of the Housing Councilors and Educators of Tennessee board, Chair of the National NeighborWorks Associations Lending Committee, on NeighborWorks Changing Markets Task Force and HomeOwnership Steering Committee,  founding member of the Association of Non-profit Executive Directors, 2002 Leadership Team of Leadership Nashville, and board member of the Mayors Homestead Corp. He currently sits on several housing and community related boards and committees at the local and state levels. Mr. Latimer holds a Bachelors degree in Business Administration from Auburn University, studied theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia and a graduate of the Kennedy School of Government Achieving Excellence Program 2106. He is the proud parent of three adult children.

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Kendra Love
West TN HUD Housing Education Counselor Coordinator
TN Housing Development Agency

Kendra Love is the West Tennessee HUD Housing Education Counselor Coordinator. She joined THDA June 2017 and brings 8+ years of housing counseling and a wealth of knowledge regarding housing affordability. Experienced in facilitation of Individual and Group Counseling and Training.
As a Memphis native, she has a true passion for serving the West TN Region. Kendra is a former Tennessee Housing Development Agency Housing Education Advisory Board member. Certified HUD Housing Counselor. NeighborWorks America Certified in Pre and Post Purchase, Homeownership Education Training and Counseling, Foreclosure Intervention Counseling, and Financial Capabilities. 2018 THDA Leadership Academy Alumni.


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Linda Mandolini
Eden Housing
Linda Mandolini has served as President of Eden Housing since 2001. Eden Housing is California’s second oldest non-profit housing development companies and has developed or acquired more than 10,500 units throughout California. Linda oversees affordable housing production, resident support services, and property management components of the organization, and a staff of more than 340 employees. She is guided in her work by Eden’s active volunteer board of directors. Under her strong leadership, Eden Housing has become one of the most productive and successful nonprofit affordable housing developers in California. To date, Eden has developed or acquired more than 10,500 affordable rental apartments throughout California, providing homes for nearly 100,000 low-income families, seniors, and persons with disabilities. Linda has received a number of awards including being inducted into the Alameda County Women’s Hall of Fame in 2017 and named to the San Francisco Business Times’ Forever Influential Honor Roll in 2016. Linda is a leader in housing policy on the local, state and national level. She serves or has served on the Boards: Make Room, National Housing Conference, California Housing Consortium, Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California, Housing Trust of Silicon Valley, Enterprise Communities’ Community Leadership Council, and International Housing Policy Exchange. In her free time, Linda is an avid bicyclist and frequently rides for charitable causes including the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training Program, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and the Michael J. Fox Foundation in support of research for cures to Parkinson’s disease.

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Jaha Martin

HCHV Coordinated Entry Specialist
US Department of Veterans Affairs
TN Valley Healthcare System

Jaha Martin obtained her Bachelor of Science Degree in Social Work from Tennessee State University and her Master of Science Degree in Social Work from University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Ms. Martin is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) in the State of Tennessee. She has certifications as a Certified Advanced Social Work Case Manager (C-ASWCM) and Board Certified Diplomat (BCD). Ms. Martin currently works as a HCHV Coordinated Entry Specialist with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at Tennessee Valley Healthcare System where she collaborates with community partners to support the VA Homeless Program by providing continuity of care for Veterans experiencing homelessness and aiding them in transitioning from homelessness to various types of housing within VA and the community. Ms. Martin has also worked as a HUD-VASH Social Worker where she provided intensive case management and counseling to Veterans experiencing homelessness to aid them in obtaining and maintaining permanent housing. Ms. Martin also has experience in providing therapy to individuals and families that have experienced grief and loss and various types of traumas. She is passionate about serving her community and advocating for affordable housing.

Anne Segrest McCulloch
President and CEO
Housing Partnership Equity Trust

Anne Segrest McCulloch leads Housing Partnership Equity Trust, a national, public purpose REIT founded and owned by nonprofit affordable housing developers, with investments from leading foundations, financial institutions and impact investors.  HPET has acquired and preserved 15 apartment communities across the country providing housing to almost 3000 families. Anne previously led Fannie Mae’s strategic efforts to expand lending in emerging multicultural markets and increase borrower access to mortgage credit and affordable housing. In that role, she led efforts to analyze market changes, understand the buying patterns of Millennials, Gen Xers, and Boomers, engage with key customers and industry stakeholders and build products that respond to those changes. During her tenure at Fannie Mae she led customer engagement efforts to expand business with state housing finance agencies, increasing loan purchases 10x in five years. As divisional general counsel for Fannie Mae’s $200 billion apartment finance business, she restructured her team to handle a 2x increase in multifamily loan acquisitions and a 7.5x increase in workouts and foreclosures without increasing staffing. Anne has also served in a range of government positions, with HUD, the FDIC, and the RTC. Anne is vice chair of the board of governors of the National Housing Conference.  She is also the immediate past chair of the Tulane Fund Advisory Board. A thought leader within the housing industry, she frequently speaks and writes on a wide range of housing matters.  Admitted to the District of Columbia and Louisiana Bars, she earned her Juris Doctor and Bachelor of Arts degrees from Tulane University.

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Josh McKinney
East TN HUD Housing Counseling Coordinator 
TN Housing Development Agency

Josh McKinney graduated from East Tennessee State University in 2008 with a degree in Public Relations/Political Science. In 2009, Eastern Eight Community Development Corporation hired Josh to help develop one of the state’s first post-purchase education programs. After successfully launching that program, he remained at Eastern Eight as a Program Coordinator, where he managed all homeowner education services. He eventually served as a foreclosure intervention counselor in addition to his other duties. While at Eastern Eight, USDA Rural Development recognized Josh as a Valued Partner for 2012. He also pastors Midfield Free Will Baptist in Kingsport, Tennessee, an office he’s held for two years. Josh comes to THDA from United Way of Elizabethton/ Carter County where he served as the Director/Community Impact Coordinator. He led the organization to a successful 2016-2017 Fundraising Campaign and helped engineer a partnership between United Way and Elizabethton Housing and Development Agency to create a Community Resource Center for their public housing communities. He owns a home in Elizabethton, Tennessee with his wife of eight years. He has an immense passion for people, and a desire to see them reach their full potential and dreams. His specific interests lie in helping people maintain financially stable lives and to have access to safeand affordable housing.


Emily Mitchell
Director, Regional Economic Information Network (REIN), Nashville Branch 
Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

In her capacity as REIN Director in Nashville for Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Emily Mitchell supports the monetary policy process by gathering and synthesizing insights from Tennessee business and community leaders to provide real-time intelligence about regional economic conditions. Mitchell joined the Atlanta Fed’s community and economic development team in 2011, and most recently has served as operations manager for the group. In that role, she has managed the team’s reporting, budgeting, and staffing functions. Her system projects have included management of partner outreach and recruitment and survey deployment for the Federal Reserve Banks’ Small Business Credit Survey. She was previously a senior program director at Enterprise Community Partners, a national housing organization, where she had responsibility for designing and implementing training, technical assistance, grants, and an online certification process for affordable housing organizations. She also managed the residential green building program, LEED for Homes, and the affordable housing efforts at the U.S. Green Building Council. Mitchell has master’s degrees in urban and regional planning from Virginia Tech University and environmental science and policy from American University. 

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Stephen Murray
Executive Director 
Community Housing Partnership of Williamson County

Stephen Murray is the current Executive Director of Community Housing Partnership of Williamson County (CHP), a housing not for profit. In the course of his career he has been responsible for the development of over five hundred single family houses for homeownership and six hundred rental units for low income families across East and Middle Tennessee. He also developed a rural psychiatric hospital, over a hundred units of housing for individuals with mental illness or developmental disabilities, adult day care centers, battered women shelters, and the enhancement of numerous not for profits through partnerships. Mr. Murray is a recognized leader in housing issues in the country and has served on the boards of the Appalachian Chapter of the American Red Cross, Emory Valley Center, the TN State Partnership Office of Fannie Mae, RNA Community Builders Inc., United Way of Williamson County, and three Chambers of Commerce. He continues to develop low income housing in Williamson County and acts as a homebuyer counselor in Middle Tennessee. A graduate of the University of Dayton, Mr. Murray has three sons, one daughter, two daughters-in-law, and a brand new granddaughter, Maisyn. He and his beautiful wife Debra live in Columbia, TN with their two dogs, Rocco and Tula.


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Eric Myers
Executive Director
Chattanooga Design Studio

Eric Myers was appointed as the Executive Director of the Chattanooga Design Studio in March 2017. In this role he oversees strategic development, fiscal performance, and is the Studio’s primary spokesperson to the media and the general public. Under his leadership, the Studio has begun to strengthen relationships with various outside organizations and has aligned the studio’s program focus
to help the Board of Directors engage on specific mission related opportunities. A native of Maryland, Myers is a LEED accredited registered architect and urban designer with a broad ranging background and breadth of experience in Chattanooga and the Southeast. For over 22 years Eric has practiced architecture and urban design in Chattanooga. Prior to joining the Chattanooga Design Studio, Eric founded a design firm and through his 10 years of leadership, the organization helped create urban housing, commercial retail and offices, healthcare facilities, historic preservation efforts, as well as urban design and neighborhood structure plans. Eric was also urban design coordinator at the community’s legacy studio which operated from 1980 until 2005. He holds a bachelor of architecture degree from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Eric currently serves on the Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise Board of Directors. He is the immediate past president of Cornerstones, Inc. and past president of the Chattanooga Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. Myers also served a 2014 to 2017 appointment to the Chattanooga Hamilton County Regional Planning Commission.


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Alvin Nance
Chief Executive Officer
LHP Development, LLC

Alvin Nance is Chief Executive Officer of LHP Development, LLC. Before joining LHP in April 2015, Alvin served a 14-year tenure as Executive Director and CEO of Knoxville’s Community Development Corporation, the public housing and redevelopment authority for the City of Knoxville, during which he served on the staffs of Mayors Victor Ashe, Bill Haslam and Madeline Rogero. Alvin is active in organizations representing public housing authorities in Tennessee and the Southeast. He served two terms on the Board of Directors and was Vice Chairman of the Tennessee Housing Development Agency and served on THDA’s Tax Credit Committee. He also served as Chairman of the Tennessee Association of Housing and Redevelopment Authorities’ legislative committee and in several leadership roles for the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, including posts on its community revitalization, development and legislative committees. He is active in the business and philanthropic community, Alvin has served on the boards and in leadership capacities of the following: Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati, First Tennessee Bank, Covenant Health Hospital System, Knoxville Area Urban League, Knox County Industrial Development Board, Project GRAD, Boy Scouts of America, Greater Knoxville First Tee Program, Knoxville Habitat for Humanity, Leadership Knoxville, Dogwood Arts Festival, Maryville College, YMCA and Emerald Charter School. He earned a Bachelor’s degree from Maryville College.


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Cindy Natsch
A Better Nest
Cindy is Founder/Owner of A Better Nest, Home Livability Consultants, founded in 2011. A Better Nest focuses on helping educate individuals and families on how to successfully Age in Place. Cindy is also the Founder of Let’s Get Moving!, a Senior Move Management service which assists with decluttering, relocation and rightsizing. Founded in 2005. The ABN and LGM teams are known for their ability to quickly build rapport and provide solutions to current and unique living circumstances. As a frequent speaker and volunteer, Cindy vows to help ‘marry visions with actions’ in providing education and practices to improve home livability options as we age.

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Brandi Pearl
Chattanooga Association of Realtors
Brandi Pearl has been in the real estate industry since 2005. She runs a small team in Chattanooga selling residential real estate with a focus on investing and creating wealth through real estate. She is Mom to Vivian and has two dogs Batman and Willow. Brandi enjoys all things real estate and travel. She flips homes and owns rental property. She serves as the current and past chair of the state’s diversity and inclusion committee. She also currently serves on the 2019 Housing Opportunity Committee and is President-elect for the Chattanooga Association of Realtors.

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Robin Penick
Housing Program Technical Specialist
US Department of Housing and Development
Robin Penick joined the US Department of Housing and Development in July, 2000 as a Community Builder. She currently works in the Office of Housing Counseling as a Housing Program Technical Specialist in the Office of Outreach and Capacity Building and is located in the Louisville Field Office in Louisville, Kentucky. Ms. Penick has participated on the HUD team to write the Housing Counselor Certification Rule, assisted in the development of the HUD Housing Counselor Certification Training and Testing materials and oversaw the system development of the HUD Housing Counselor Certification process.

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Cynthia Peraza
Director of Single Family Special Programs
TN Housing Development Agency

Cynthia Peraza is the Director of Single Family Special Programs.  She has been with Tennessee Housing Development Agency (THDA) since 2011.  Cynthia has played an instrumental role in the creation and development of programs that help prevent foreclosures, stabilize communities and preserve homeownership.  Some of the programs she has developed are: the Blight Elimination Program, Appalachian Renovation Loan Program, Tennessee Renovation Loan Program, Attorney General’s Foreclosure Prevention Counseling Program, Reinstatement Only Program and the Keep My Tennessee Home Program.  Cynthia is active in the Tennessee Government Leadership programs offered through the state.  She graduated from LEAD Tennessee in 2014, Tennessee Government Management Institute in June 2017 and Tennessee Government Executive Institute in 2018.  She holds an active Mortgage Loan Originator license and is NCHEC Certified under Foreclosure Intervention and Default Counseling. Cynthia is originally from San Diego, California but is happy to call Tennessee home today. She lives outside of Nashville, Tennessee with her husband, daughter, son and two pet dogs.

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Todd Reynolds
Vice President of Sales
Goodall Homes

Todd Reynolds grew up in Gallatin, TN, and graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1992. Todd has been in new home sales and management since May 1993. He spent time selling homes in the field and became VP of Sales for a large national homebuilder in 2000. He remained there until 2007, when he came on board with Goodall Homes as their VP of Sales and Marketing. Todd was voted Sales Manager of the Year in 2013 thru HBAMT. He has three children– Reed, Halle, and Bennett, and his wife is the principal of the new Burrus Elementary. Todd grew up in Gallatin and knows the Middle Tennessee housing market extremely well. Today, he has a family of 5 and still gets excited watching a field turn into a thriving neighborhood!


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Buzz Roberts
President and CEO
National Association of Affordable Housing Lenders


President and CEO of the National Association of Affordable Housing Lenders. NAAHL is the national alliance of leading banks, community development financial institutions (CDFIs), and other capital providers for affordable housing and inclusive neighborhood revitalization. Buzz was the Director of the Office of Small Business, Community Development and Housing Policy at the U.S. Treasury Department from 2011 to 2015. He was previously Senior Vice President for Policy and Program Development at the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), a leading nonprofit investor in low-income community development. Buzz has helped to create the Low Income Housing Tax Credit; the New Markets Tax Credit; the HOME housing partnerships program; regulatory changes to the Community Reinvestment Act; the Capital Magnet Fund; Treasury funding for FHA multifamily risk-sharing loans to finance affordable rental housing; and bond guarantees for CDFIs. He has been a board member of several national nonprofit organizations and coalitions and has written extensively about affordable housing and neighborhood revitalization. 


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Dennis Smith
Affordable Lending Manager
Single Family Affordable Lending and Access to Credit


Dennis Smith is an Affordable Lending Manager in the Single Family Affordable Lending and Access to Credit organization. Mr. Smith manages the manufactured housing initiatives that support Freddie Mac’s underserved markets plan. A 20 year mortgage industry veteran, Mr. Smith has served the industry as an underwriter, underwriting and process manager, process improvement, product development and managed the CRA and Bond programs for a super-regional mortgage company.

Chris Stout
Co-Founder and CEO 
Veterans Community Project
Chris served in the U.S. Army with the 82nd Airborne Division and was medically retired after being injured in Afghanistan. Since leaving the Army Chris has made it his life’s mission to serve his fellow veterans and improve the quality of their post service lives. To that end and prior to the founding of Veterans Service Project, Chris has served as a volunteer with a number of veteran organizations including working with a Kansas City nonprofit helping to connect veterans to veteran specific resources. In 2015 Chris joined with two other veterans to found Veterans Service Project, a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization dedicated to providing transitional-housing and enabling access to exceptional 360-degree service solutions for every veteran. Chris is a currently listed as a CNN top 10 Hero and a nominee for CNN hero of the year.

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Kathy Trawick
Executive Director
Tennessee Fair Housing Council
Kathy Trawick began her tenure as the Executive Director of the Tennessee Fair Housing Council on June 1, 2017. Originally from Nashville, Ms. Trawick has nearly 30 years of experience in housing related areas. Since 2003, Ms. Trawick has focused her work on violations of the Fair Housing Act. She began working at West Tennessee Legal Services as a Paralegal/Test Coordinator. It wasn’t long before she decided to attend law school at the University of Memphis, Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law. During this time, Ms.
Trawick continued to work at WTLS at 80% time. Ms. Trawick was licensed in 2011 and continued to work at WTLS as Staff Attorney. Admitted to Federal Court, Ms. Trawick has handled Fair Housing cases through the Administrative Process with HUD and the Tennessee Human Rights Commission, in front of Administrative Law Judges, and by filing lawsuits in Federal Court. In addition to her Fair Housing cases, Ms. Trawick has handled numerous landlord-tenant and mortgage cases. She has assisted in the formation of Fair Housing Projects in Mississippi, North Carolina, and Oklahoma; training staff attorneys, test coordinators, and testers. Prior to working at West Tennessee Legal Services, Ms. Trawick worked for the Jackson Housing Authority in Jackson, Tennessee, in their Section 8 Department for 14 years. Outside of her regular duties, Ms. Trawick makes 10 – 15 presentations across the state each year on  various aspects of the Fair Housing Act; and is a member of several bar associations and an active partner with the Nashville Promise Zone.

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Miguel Vega
Chief Diversity Officer/
Sr. Vice President of Business Development and Community Outreach
First Community Mortgage

Miguel Vega is First Community Mortgage Chief Diversity Officer, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Community Outreach. He leads the company’s planning and execution of Multi-Cultural, Millennial and Affordable Lending Strategies to increase sales and company growth. Miguel joined FCM in 2016 as Associate Vice President of Business Development, focusing on the Hispanic market. Under his direction, First Community Mortgage won the Mortgage Bankers Association National Diversity and Inclusion Residential Leadership Award for Market Outreach Strategies. Miguel is a Marketing graduate of California State University – Los Angeles. He has also earned degrees and certifications from ITAM and ITESM in Mexico.

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Don Watt
Director of Community Programs
TN Housing Development Agency
Don is the Director of Community Programs with the Tennessee Housing Development Agency where he leads implementation of federal and state grant programs, including HOME, Emergency Solutions Grant, National Housing Trust Fund, Low Income Home Energy Assistance, and Weatherization Assistance Programs as well as state funded programs targeting individuals with disabilities, those who are homeless or have other special needs.  Prior to joining THDA in 2015, Don worked for more than 20 years with the Georgia Department of Community Affairs/Georgia Housing and Finance Authority managing a variety of grant programs serving the homeless, individuals with special needs, and low income families.  He possesses a Masters of City and Regional Planning from The Ohio State University.  

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Stockton Williams
Executive Director
National Council of State Housing Agencies

Stockton Williams was appointed Executive Director of the National Council of State Housing Agencies (NCSHA) in March 2018. NCSHA’s state housing finance agency (HFA) members have delivered more than $450 billion in financing to make possible the purchase, development, and rehabilitation of more than 7 million affordable homes for low- and middle-income households. Stockton leads NCSHA’s federal advocacy efforts to communicate and strengthen the central role of state HFAs in the nation’s housing system in partnership with other national organizations. Stockton has 25 years of experience in affordable housing development, financing, policy, research, and advocacy. He was previously Executive Vice president of Content and Executive Director of the Terwilliger Center for Housing at the Urban Land Institute (ULI). Before joining ULI, Stockton was Managing Principal of HR&A Advisors’ Washington, D.C., office. He previously served as Senior Advisor in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Department of Energy. He has also held senior leadership positions at Enterprise Community Partners, Living Cities, and with an affordable housing developer. Stockton holds a Master of Science in Real Estate Development from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts in Religion from Princeton University.

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Ryan Wilson
Media Relations Manager

Clayton Homes

Ryan Wilson is Media Relations Manager at Clayton and a manufactured housing evangelist. Working closely with Clayton and industry leadership, he has helped bring prefabricated home construction to the forefront of the affordable housing discussion. Prior to joining Clayton seven years ago, Ryan worked as a journalist and campaign organizer. When he’s not making friends in the media, Ryan enjoys spending time with his wife, Jamie, and their two children.