The National Association of REALTORS® and the National Housing Conference gratefully acknowledge the
support of our partners in planning and executing this regional forum.
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8:45 AM – 9:30 AM Registration Open (Light Refreshments Available)
9:30 AM – 9:45 AM Welcome
• Andy Mahowald, National Association of REALTORS®
9:45 AM – 10:00 AM Opening Remarks
• Commissioner Dan Bartholomay, Minnesota Housing Finance Agency
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM Opening Panel: “The Growing Cost of Place—Why Workforce Housing Matters in
• Tom Fulton, Family Housing Fund (moderator)
• Cathy Bennett, ULI Minnesota/RCM Housing Initiative
• Paul Fate, CommonBond Communities
• Warren Hanson, Greater Minnesota Housing Fund
• Craig Helmstetter, Wilder Research/Minnesota Compass
11:30 AM – 12:15 PM Keynote
• Christina Clemans, National Association of REALTORS® (introduction)
• Jeffrey Lubell, Center for Housing Policy
12:15 PM – 12:30 PM Break (Lunch Available)
12:30 PM – 1:45 PM Panel: “Lessons from the Field: Workforce Housing in Action”
• Samantha DeKoven, Metropolitan Planning Council (moderator)
• Jennifer Clark, Loyola University Chicago
• Raymond Schmidt, Select Milwaukee, Inc.
• Michele Schnitker, St. Louis Park, MN
• Warren Hanson, Greater Minnesota Housing Fund
1:45 PM – 3:00 PM Panel: “Advancing Workforce Housing through Partnership”
• Samantha DeKoven, Metropolitan Planning Council (moderator)
• Diane Schobert, Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority
• Tom Larson, Wisconsin REALTORS® Association
• Susan Elkins, Bremer Bank
• Chip Halbach, Minnesota Housing Partnership
3:00 PM – 5:00 PM Networking Reception
Join NHC’s new President and CEO to learn more about where NHC is headed in
housing’s new era, and how you can be a part of it!
• Maureen Friar, National Housing Conference
• Tom Fulton, Family Housing Fund
• Mary “Muffie” Gabler, Wells Fargo Bank
Daniel M. Bartholomay
Dan Bartholomay is Commissioner of the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, appointed to that position by
Governor Tim Pawlenty in 2008. Minnesota Housing is the state’s affordable housing financial institution, which
invests over $1 billion each biennium to meet Minnesota’s affordable housing and community development
needs and serves over 55,000 Minnesotans each year.
Prior to joining Minnesota Housing, Dan was the Program Director for the McKnight Foundation’s Regions and
Communities, and International programs. He also directed the McKnight Foundation’s grants program for
affordable housing. Dan was the Executive Director of North End Area Revitalization in St. Paul and was also the
coordinator of planning and special projects for the Neighborhood Institute in Chicago.
He is a graduate of Carleton College with a degree in Urban Affairs.
Cathy Capone Bennett
Ms. Bennett began her consulting career in 2006 as the sole owner of Bennett Community Consulting. Her work
includes developing private-public alliances, program development, and project management in all facets of
housing strategy and economic development through her experience working for local government and the
private and non-profit sectors. This includes affordable housing implementation, housing plan strategy
development, public financing, business retention and recruitment, strategic analysis, focus group facilitation
and program marketing.
Ms Bennett worked in community development for local government between 1994-2005 in the cities of
Roseville and Mounds View. Prior to moving to Minnesota Ms. Bennett worked for a private non-profit
corporation in San Diego for 8 years with the specific purpose of attracting new businesses and fostering a
positive business climate in the county. Current consulting clients include local government, non-profit and
private development sectors throughout the Twin Cities metropolitan region.
Ms. Bennett has served as the project coordinator for the ULI MN Regional Council of Mayors Housing Initiative
since 2008 which includes conducting the Opportunity City Pilot Program in the cities of Brooklyn Park,
Minnetonka, Richfield, Rosemount and Shoreview. In addition, she is responsible for the creation of a regional
housing toolkit and public policy facilitation surrounding the development and preservation of a full range of
housing choices throughout the region.
Jennifer sets the overall direction for Loyola's Department of Community Relations and personally works to
ensure that the voice of the community is heard within the University and the University is a respected leader in
She facilitates campus-community strategic planning, community infrastructure improvements,
communications, and special events.
Jennifer is the chairperson of the Lake Shore Campus Advisory Council which is the community's advisory role to
Loyola's administration. She also represents Loyola on five nonprofit Boards of Directors including the AIDS
Foundation of Chicago, Edgewater Chamber of Commerce, North Edgewater Beach Association, Rogers Park
Community Council, and Sacred Heart Schools. She is Loyola's representative to the 48th Ward Zoning and
Planning Committee and the Granville Task Force.
Within the University, Jennifer chairs the Strategic Planning Task Force on Community Development and
Relations. She is a staff representative to the Facilities and Capital Assets Committee of the Board of Trustees for
which she authored the Lakeside Campus Design Guidelines. Currently, Jennifer sits on the Alcohol Safety Net
Committee and the Council on External Affairs.
Prior to joining Loyola in 2001, Jennifer worked for the Chicago Public Schools as a high school teacher, the
Chicago Police Department as the 20th district community organizer, the Chicago Park District as the community
center director in Uptown.
Jennifer has a B.S. in Speech from Northwestern University, an M.Ed. from DePaul University, and an M.B.A.
from Loyola University Chicago. She also has a certificate from the Program on Negotiation at the Harvard/MIT/
Tufts University Consortium and an Excellence in Leadership certificate from the Rockhurst University
Continuing Education Center.
Christina P. Clemans
Christina P. Clemans is Broker-Owner of the real estate firm Chris Clemans Sotheby’s International Realty of
Cape May, NJ. She served as the 2003 President of the New Jersey Association of Realtors® (NJAR) and is
currently the President of NJAR’s Housing Opportunity Foundation.
Chris is a National Association of Realtors®’ Director and the 2010 Chair of the Housing Opportunity Committee.
She also sits on NAR’s Housing Opportunity Advisory Board and Public Policy Coordinating Committee. In 2011,
Chris will serve as the NAR Regional Vice President for Region 2, which covers New Jersey, New York and
Samantha DeKoven is a housing consultant with MPC, providing technical assistance to help organizations,
companies, and local or regional governments across the nation design and implement customized employer-
assisted housing programs.
Prior to her current role providing national technical assistance, Samantha worked with employers in the
Chicago region to develop, execute, and evaluate their employer-assisted housing initiatives. She convened a
collaborative of nonprofit housing counseling organizations to partner with these employers and administer
their housing programs. She engaged these employers as advocates to support housing policy and new
production, including testifying before legislative hearings. She also worked with the state housing finance
agency to make available state matching funds and pass legislation authorizing state tax credits for employer-
assisted housing investments.
Samantha joined MPC in 1999 as project manager of the Regional Rental Market Analysis, which gathered
qualitative and quantitative information related to the rental market in northeastern Illinois. Prior to joining
MPC, she worked at the Woodstock Institute on community development and community reinvestment issues.
She co-authored Small Business Lending for Economic Development, Vol. 2, wrote three chapters in the
guidebook Tools for Promoting Community Reinvestment, and managed production and fundraising for the
Community Lending Fact Book.
Susan Elkins is the Community Development Mgr for Bremer Banks. She has been with Bremer Bank for 15
years, however, has been in the mortgage industry for 30 years. Susan is responsible for the affordable housing
products for all of Bremer Banks in Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin. This year Sue is again the Co-Chair
of the very successful Affordable Homes Congress which will be held in October as well as the events of 2005,
2007 and 2009, she also Tri-Chaired the Native American Housing Conference in 2007 and 2009 as well as the
upcoming 2011 Conference.
Along with those duties she is the coordinator of Bremer Bank’s HELP loan (Homeownership Employee Loan
Program), a forgivable grant of $5,000 for eligible employees of the Bank to be utilized for downpayment and/or
closing costs for their first homeownership endeavor. Sue is very active in the downpayment assistance
programs for first-time and non-first time homebuyers within Bremer Bank’s footprint.
Paul Fate is the President and CEO of CommonBond Communities, the largest nonprofit provider of affordable
housing with resident services in the Upper Midwest. He has over 25 years of experience in the field of housing
and community development, including Executive Director of Payne Lake Community Partners, Director of
National Services at the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation, and Executive Directors of the Local Initiatives Support
Corporation - Twin Cities office. Paul serves on the board of the Housing Partnership Network, an alliance of the
nation's top performing nonprofit development organizations. Mr. Fate holds a master’s degree in public
administration from Harvard University and a master’s degree in city planning from the University of Minnesota.
Maureen Friar became president and CEO of NHC in February 2010. A recognized and respected industry expert,
Ms. Friar has more than 25 years of experience in housing advocacy, policy analysis, fundraising and non-profit
management. As executive director for 14 years, she grew the Supportive Housing Network of New York from an
ad hoc coalition into a vibrant and effective statewide advocacy association representing 34,000 units of
affordable rental housing linked to services for homeless and special needs populations.
Prior to joining NHC, Ms. Friar served as a marketing consultant to the National Equity Fund, the largest
nonprofit investor in federal low-income housing tax credits, and as a fundraising and management consultant
to Community Access, a New York nonprofit agency that provides supportive housing, employment training and
advocacy for persons with psychiatric disabilities. Her many achievements were recognized by the New York
State Association for Affordable Housing, which honored her with the 2006 Advocate of the Year Award for
She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brown University, a Master’s degree from the Goldman School of
Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, and was a Charles H. Revson Fellow on the Future of the
City of New York at Columbia University.
Tom Fulton has been the President of the Family Housing Fund since its creation in 1980. The Fund is a private,
nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide safe, affordable, sustainable homes to families and children
in the Twin Cities metropolitan area through ongoing partnerships with the public and private sector. Under
Tom Fulton’s leadership, the Family Housing Fund and its partners have helped to create more than 30,000
affordable housing units for low- and moderate-income families over the past 29 years. The Fund supports the
cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, the Metropolitan Council, and Minnesota Housing in their efforts to
preserve and expand the region’s supply of affordable housing. Mr. Fulton is a graduate of the University of
Minnesota Masters degree program in Public Administration. He has worked in the housing and community
development field for nearly 35 years. Prior to working at the Fund, Tom was Deputy Director for Planning and
Administration at the Minneapolis Housing and Redevelopment Authority.
Chip is the co-founder and executive director of the Minnesota Housing Partnership (MHP). Formed in 1989,
MHP has gained national recognition for its work to build the capacity of nonprofit housing developers in
Minnesota and to promote affordable housing as a statewide priority. Chip has worked for housing
organizations in Minnesota since 1977. Prior to MHP, Chip was assistant director of Common Space, a Twin
Cities-based developer and support organization for cooperative housing.
Warren W. Hanson
Mr. Hanson brings over 30 years of community development, public administration and finance experience to
Greater Minnesota Housing Fund (GMHF). He has served as president and CEO of (GMHF) since its start-up in
1996, initially working with The McKnight Foundation and Blandin Foundation to plan and capitalize GMHF as
Minnesota’s largest rural community development finance institution. He works closely with the board to set
priorities and with state and local government and non-profits to identify programs and strategies for meeting
the community development needs of Greater Minnesota. Prior to GMHF, Mr. Hanson was president of Regional
Strategies, Inc, which assisted foundations and local governments with planning and financing economic
development projects throughout Minnesota. Mr. Hanson was director of Riverfront Development and
Neighborhood Development for the City of St. Paul for eight years, and is the co-founder of the Community
Reinvestment Fund (CRF), a national secondary market entity for community development lenders. From 1978
to 1987, Mr. Hanson was director of economic development for West Bank Community Development
Corporation, which redeveloped the Cedar Riverside Urban Renewal area of Minneapolis. Mr. Hanson holds a
Masters of Science Degree in City and Regional Planning from the Pratt Institute, New York.
Craig Helmstetter is the lead researcher on the Minnesota Compass initiative, where he oversees the collection,
analysis, and presentation of all data for the project. He presents findings to diverse groups on an array of data
related to quality of life in our state and its communities. In addition, Craig manages Wilder’s Homeless
Management Information System, a database in use by more than 200 organizations serving people
experiencing homelessness in Minnesota.
Craig joined Wilder Research in 2001 after working as a program evaluator for the State of Minnesota and as a
project director for a survey research center. He holds a master's degree in community and regional planning
and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Oregon. He has taught university-level seminars on quantitative
research methods and homelessness, and has spoken at national conferences on using data to track trends in
Thomas D. Larson is the Director of Regulatory and Legislative Affairs for the Wisconsin Realtors Association. He
is an attorney and a lobbyist, specializing in a wide variety of housing-related issues. Mr. Larson has been
actively involved in the development and enactment of numerous state laws and policies impacting the housing
industry. He has served as a member of various state task forces including the Wisconsin Land Council,
Wisconsin’s Working Lands Initiative, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ Shoreland Zoning
Advisory Committee. He also serves on the Village of Shorewood Hills Zoning Board of Appeals.
Jeffrey M. Lubell
Jeffrey M. Lubell became executive director of the Center for Housing Policy in 2006 and is a recognized expert
in housing and community development policy. Prior to becoming head of the Center, Lubell worked as an
independent consultant specializing in analyzing and developing recommendations for strengthening national,
state and local housing and community development policy.
From 2000 to 2003, he served as director of the policy development division of the Office of Policy Development
and Research at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. He also worked from 1998 to 2000 as
a housing policy analyst for the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a nonprofit organization that is one of the
leading independent authorities on programs affecting low-income families. Lubell is a graduate of Harvard Law
School and Harvard College.
Mahowald has been in the real estate business since 1993. Currently, he is Owner and Broker of Insight Realty
Group in Watertown, South Dakota. Mahowald specializes in the areas in the residential, commercial, and
agricultural real estate.
As a second generation REALTOR®, it was instilled by his father early in his career to get involved in the
REALTOR® organization to fully understand the business and how public policy is continually shaping the
business. He has been active in the REALTOR® organization on all levels. In 2004, Andy was President of the
South Dakota Association of REALTORS®.
Currently, Mahowald is the Region 8 Vice-President for the National Association of REALTORS®. This covers the
states of South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Iowa. He is a graduate of St. John's University
in Collegeville, MN. Any available free time is spent with wife Becky and four young boys.
Ray has served as Executive Director of Select Milwaukee since its inception in 1991. During his tenure,
collaboration with the private, nonprofit and public sectors has been integral to Select Milwaukee’s efforts to
increase homeownership opportunities for modest-income families and strengthen Milwaukee neighborhoods.
Engaging the Milwaukee business community and leveraging its support of workforce homeownership is among
these efforts. Select Milwaukee’s employer assisted homeownership efforts are nationally recognized and a
foundation of Select Milwaukee’s homeownership promotion business line. Ray has overseen Select
Milwaukee’s recent launch of two new business lines, homeownership preservation and rehab technical
assistance services. He is a member of the Milwaukee Housing Trust Fund Advisory Board. Prior to joining
Select Milwaukee, Ray worked in Cleveland for the Living in Cleveland Center and the City of Cleveland. He
received a bachelor’s degree in urban studies and city planning from Case Western Reserve University and a J.D.
from Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.
Michele Schnitker has worked in the housing industry for almost 30 years. In her current position as the Housing
Supervisor for the City of St. Louis Park, she oversees all housing initiatives for the City including Public Housing,
Section 8, CDBG, housing rehab and housing development. Previously held positions include Director of
Resident Services at St. Paul PHA and Public Housing Director at Dakota County CDA. She is a graduate of the
University of MN’s Housing Program.
Diane Schobert is WHEDA’s Single Family Division Business Development Officer. It is her responsibility to
initiate and develop partnerships that enhance WHEDA’s ability to provide innovative products and services while
continuing to increase its’ financial strength. Diane’s major areas of development have been with designing and
building the Workforce Housing Initiative, creating and administering the Distance Learning Education Program,
sought and obtained Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago down payment funds for rural and urban areas of the
state and most recently taking the lead on the Foreclosure Prevention measures and Federal grant funds
management within WHEDA
Prior to this she served as the Executive Director for Movin’ Out, Inc. a statewide Wisconsin non-profit housing
agency. Diane has a great deal of experience in mortgage lending products, home ownership counseling, credit
counseling and down payment assistance programs. She has provided technical assistance to non-profit
agencies statewide and has served as residential lending manager for a major lender in Wisconsin.
Diane helped form the original task force to create the expanded underwriting guidelines for WHEDA loans to
improve borrowing opportunities for persons with a disability. She has received the WHEDA Excellence in
Service Award, the Wisconsin Supported Housing Partnership Award, ARC-Dane County Corporate Service
Award and WHEDA Leadership Award.
Diane serves on the Board of Directors for the South Central WI Housing Foundation, Madison Area Community
Land Trust, the Home For Everyone Wisconsin Housing Collaborative Planning Team and the General Board of
Discipleship for the United Methodist Church.
Diane graduated Summa Cum Laude from UW Platteville with a BS in Communications (Public Relations) and a