Schedule / Sessions - PHFA Commonwealth Housing Forum 

Come Together (text with six multicolored arrows pointing in forming a circle)


May 8-9, 2019Hilton Harrisburg

Schedule / Sessions

Wednesday, May 8

  • 10:30 a.m. Registration opens
  • 11:00 a.m. Housing Marketplace Exhibit Hall opens and "PHFA Staff Meet and Greet" pre-conference event in exhibit hall
  • 12:00 p.m. Lunch
  •   1:00 p.m. Keynote Address by Earl David Reed
  •   1:45 p.m. Dessert in Housing Marketplace Exhibit Hall
  •   2:30 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Educational Sessions – A
  •   4:00 p.m. - 5:15 p.m. Educational Sessions – B
  •   5:15 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Networking Reception in the Housing Marketplace Exhibit Hall
 Educational Sessions A
    1. Latest Multifamily Finance Trends in a Changing Market: Hear from industry experts on the latest in multifamily finance. From trends in the tax credit markets to updates for HUD and GSE loan products and the bond markets, these industry experts will bring you up to speed on the latest developments occurring in the industry and the marketplace.
      • Moderator: Jordan Laird, Director of Finance, PHFA
      • Panelists: Josh Levy, Senior Vice President, Riverside Capital; Steve Ervin, Senior Vice President and Head of FHA and Affordable Housing, Berkadia; Alan Jaffe, Managing Director and Head of Housing Group, Jefferies LLC
    2. Adventures in Community Development – Strategies and Resources: This interactive session will include random riffing, talking story, and other housing and community development vignettes provided by three stellar raconteurs steeped in wisdom and experience. Panelists (urban adventurers) will share their varied philosophical approaches and strategies for planning, developing, implementing and measuring critical housing/community development projects in an urban neighborhood context. By mixing, matching and securing funding for these complex and comprehensive neighborhood revitalization initiatives, these renowned leaders will extol the audience with stories of their work – consider it an "Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark" type session.
      • Moderator: Bryce Maretzki, Director, Strategic Planning and Policy, PHFA
      • Panelists: Brad Copeland, Executive Director, Mt. Airy USA Community Development Corporation; Linda Metropulos, Vice President, Real Estate Development, ACTION-Housing, Inc.; Christopher Shea, Director/Consultant, Larimer Choice Neighborhood Initiative
    3. Bus Tour of Sunflower Fields – 2015 PHFA Innovation in Design Award Winner: Come see this exciting new workforce housing development located just outside the city of Harrisburg. Completed in 2017, it consists of 35 general-occupancy, single-family, detached homes. The development received 900 applications, according to Monarch Development. What makes it special is that Sunflower Fields is a rental development which, after 15 years, will convert to homeownership. Don't miss this chance to hear the developer's story about the property, see the homes, and walk the one-acre community garden. Sunflower Fields was a 2015 Low-Income Housing Tax Credit recipient. The bus tour is limited to 44 people. (See sidebar in Forum program for more details about Sunflower Fields.)
      • Tour guides: PHFA staff and a Monarch Development LLC representative
    4. Preservation Strategies – Keeping Affordable Rental Housing Affordable: Challenges exist in ensuring the current stock of affordable housing remains available in communities and continues to be affordable to residents. Explore various housing strategies for determining the right options for year 15 housing credit and at-risk developments. Learn best practices for recapitalizing HUD and USDA-assisted rental properties, bond-financed developments and housing credit portfolio.
      • Moderator: P. David Doray, Manager of Multifamily Underwriting, PHFA
      • Panelists: J. Gail Shull, Senior Development Officer, PHFA; Mark Deitcher, Director of Business Development, Mission First Housing Group; Matthew Good, Chief Executive Officer, HANDS
    5. Case Study of Two Large Passive House Retrofit Projects: Explore the design process, construction methods, and challenges for implementing energy efficiency and Passive House strategies in adaptive re-use projects. Learn best practices, the process for success, organizing the development team, and lessons learned from the developer and architect.
      • Moderator: Stan Salwocki, Manager of Architecture and Engineering, PHFA
      • Panelists: Laura Nettleton, Principal, Thoughtful Balance; Victor Rodriguez, President, a.m. Rodriguez Associates, inc.; Philip Ford, Vice President, Soto Construction Services, Inc.
    6. The Latest on Land Banks: Hear from Some of the Government Leaders Using Land Banks to Fight Blight: Land banks are a fairly recent development in Pennsylvania, made possible by Act 153 of 2012, the Land Bank Act. Local and county governments have embraced land banks with varying degrees of enthusiasm and differing levels of success. Hear from some leading jurisdictions that have gained considerable experience using their land banks to better control blight in their communities. Get insights from the experts, with the chance to ask questions about what they've learned.
      • Moderator and presenter: Christopher Gulotta, Principal, The Gulotta Group, and Administrator, Schuylkill County Land Bank
      • Other panelists: Angel Rodriguez, Executive Director, Philadelphia Land Bank, and Director of Land Development, Philadelphia Housing Development Corporation; Amy McKinney, Director of Planning and Community Development, Lawrence County; Patrick Mack, Deputy Director, Northumberland County Housing Authority; April Kopas, Executive Director, Redevelopment Authority of the County of Westmoreland
    7. Making Aging in Place a Reality: As folks get older, aging in place is most people's preference. There are many organizations available to assist individuals to achieve this way of living. These experts can provide resources that include financial options for retirees and older Pennsylvanians, health & wellness education, caregiver support programs and much more. Come and learn about these offerings, how you and your customers can access them, and how they can empower Pennsylvania seniors to remain in their own homes as long as possible.
      • Moderator: Coleen Baumert, Homeownership Director, PHFA
      • Presenters: Angela Shifflet, Residential Mortgage Manager and Senior VP, Mid-Penn Bank; Christine Miccio, Director, Bureau of Aging Services, PA Department of Aging; Christina Laffey, LPN, Community Health and Wellness Coordinator; Kathy Godin, Supportive Services Coordinator, Presbyterian Senior Living
    8. Housing in Rural Pennsylvania – An Ongoing Challenge: From 2000 to 2010, Pennsylvania's 48 rural counties gained approximately 74,300 residents, a 2 percent increase for the decade. Plus the state's rural population is aging. This presents considerable challenges for housing in rural areas. Hear from two experts in this area. Dr. Crossney will present findings from her 2018 research paper "Changes in Homeownership in Pennsylvania's Rural Municipalities." Jonathan Johnson has worked at The Center for Rural Pennsylvania for nearly three decades and will share some of the latest revealing data related to housing needs and gaps in rural parts of the state.
      • Moderator and presenter: Jonathan Johnson, Senior Policy Analyst, The Center for Rural Pennsylvania
      • Presenter: Kristen B. Crossney, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Public Policy & Administration, West Chester University


 Educational Sessions B
    1. Make Homebuying More Affordable with PHFA Financing: This session will explore financing resources to overcome the barriers of homeownership. We will discuss different PHFA mortgage programs that offer competitive interest rates, down payment and closing cost assistance, free homebuyer education and other home loan program add-ons. Come join us to expand your PHFA knowledge and help potential homebuyers secure affordable financing.
      • Presenters: Brooke Proctor, Business Development Officer, PHFA Justin Eden, Business Development Officer, PHFA
    2. Housing Tax Credit Update – The Latest BUZZZZZZ: During the last 30 years, the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program has become the most successful affordable rental housing production program in history. In Pennsylvania, more than 125,000 units have been created or preserved through the program since its inception. Join a conversation with industry experts about opportunities to strengthen the housing credit program, address housing market trends and expand on investment and community development initiatives. NOTE: This session will be videotaped. It will be available for viewing later on the Forum website.
      • Moderator: Holly Glauser, Director of Development, PHFA
      • Panelists: Scott Hoekman, President and CEO, Enterprise Housing Credit Investments, LLC; Molly Bryson, Esquire, Ballard Spahr LLP; Jennifer Schwartz, Director of Tax and Housing Advocacy, National Council of State Housing Agencies
    3. Observations from a Career of Conversations with Pennsylvanians: Based in the mid-state, James Lee has more than 20 years of experience in polling, focus groups and public opinion research. Hear his unbiased observations about the changes in public attitudes before and since the 2016 elections, informed by his work as both a public pollster for south-central Pennsylvania TV stations and a private pollster for corporate and political clients on a nationwide basis. Hear, too, his insights for how the next two years may unfold based on his ongoing research following trends with Pennsylvania households. No one has a crystal ball, but Jim's research can provide a glimpse into public perceptions and attitudes moving forward. Jim's firm was widely recognized for accurate polling in the 2016 POTUS election with a poll on behalf of WHTM-TV showing the race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump as a statistical tie only days before the election.
      • Presenter: James Lee, President and Founder, Susquehanna Polling and Research
    4. Newer Supports for Independent Living: Pennsylvania has recently implemented two new initiatives to overcome gaps and unintended consequences in its programs for people with disabilities. Join us at this session to discuss how ABLE accounts (saving accounts for people with disabilities that don't impact most government benefits) and Community Health Choices (the PA Department of Human Services' managed care program for people who are Medicaid/Medicare dually eligible) may help people with disabilities lead more independent lives. Our presenters will also discuss how these programs can help with common housing issues and the outcomes visible now from the programs’ first year-plus of operations.
      • Moderator: Roberta Schwalm, Manager of Special Initiatives, PHFA
      • Panelists: Diana Fishlock, PA ABLE Field Representative, PA Treasury; Kathleen Mullin, Housing Initiatives Director, Long Term Support Services, AmeriHealth Caritas
    5. A Guest Speaker from Harvard Shares the Latest Findings on Affordable Housing for Seniors: Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies publishes the well-respected "State of the Nation's Housing Report." Last year it issued a supplement titled "Housing America's Older Adults." This new report notes that half the nation's households – 65 million – are now headed by someone age 50 or older, and as they age they struggle to find housing that fits their limited budgets. During the next decade as baby boomers start to reach 80, the housing situation for seniors will become more dire. We're fortunate to have one of the researchers who worked on this report available to tell us firsthand what they learned and what lies ahead. At the JCHS, Dr. Molinsky manages the Center's work on housing for older adults.
      • Presenter: Jennifer Hrabchak Molinsky, Ph.D., Senior Research Associate, Joint Center for Housing Studies, Harvard University
    6. Running Your Non-profit Like a Sustainable Business: NeighborWorks America's Sustainable Business Initiative (SBI) has proven to be transformative for participating organizations by making them more sustainable social enterprises, less reliant on grants and philanthropy and more impactful. NeighborWorks organizations with a homeownership line of business that have implemented SBI have shown significant improvements in several key business parameters:
      • Efficiency: cost to deliver homeownership services to customers has been cut by 57%
      • Scale: the number of new homeownership leads and customers has doubled
      • Sustainability: cost coverage for homeownership services is up 69%
      • Impact: the number of families put into homes has increased by 64%
      A panel of participants will share how organizations can start transforming and build toward a new model of strategy and operations.
      • Moderator: Karen M. Graziano, CAPM, Acting Director, Sustainable Business Initiative, NeighborWorks America
      • Panelists: Danielle Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Utica NHS NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center; Craig Burkley, Chief Operating and Financial Officer, NeighborWorks Western Pennsylvania


Thursday, May 9

  •   8:00 a.m. Breakfast
  •   9:00 a.m. Housing Pioneer Awards
  •   9:15 a.m. Keynote Address by Dr. David Erickson
  • 10:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Educational Sessions – C
  • 11:45 a.m. Lunch
  •   1:15 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Educational Sessions – D
  •   2:45 p.m. Keynote Address by Dr. Mark Zandi
  •   3:45 p.m. Keynote Address by Abby Ivory
 Educational Sessions C
    1. Opportunity Zones: A new federal tax incentive program enacted in 2017 offers investors attractive benefits for deploying capital in certain designated census tracts. This expert panel will discuss this unique new program, its technical rules, and how it is being used to attract housing investment.
      • Panelists: Michael Ross, CPA, President, Baker Tilly Capital, LLC; Molly Bryson, Esquire, Ballard Spahr, LP; Richard Barnhart, CEO, Pennrose
    2. Health and Housing – Partnering and Preparing for a Healthier Future (in Affordable Rental Housing): Hear more insights from the morning's keynote speaker, Dr. David Erickson, in an educational session during which he will be joined by Pennsylvania leaders with expertise in the areas of health and housing. The session will touch on such topics as Medicaid and housing, and the partnerships being created between multifamily developments and hospitals. Hear stories from one developer that has worked to integrate health services with affordable senior housing. Dr. Erickson's presentation during the Forum will expand on many of the ideas in this publication. Take advantage of the opportunity for Q&A and interact with all of these subject experts. NOTE: This session will be videotaped. It will be available for viewing later on the Forum website.
      • Moderator: David Erickson, Ph.D., Director, Community Development, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
      • Panelists: Patrick Keenan, Director of Consumer Protections and Policy, PA Health Access Network; Renée Markus Hodin, Deputy Director, Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation, Community Catalyst; Shannon Mowery, Director of Supportive Services, Pennrose
    3. Innovative Strategies to Improve the Quality of Patient Care While Delivering Essential Housing and Personal Financial Services in Local Communities: Developing strategic partnerships with a local healthcare provider has been a proven strategy for non-profit organizations, developers and other stakeholders to increase the number of clients served, attract potential homeowners and secure additional funding opportunities. Learn how state providers of social services programs have joined forces with one of the largest healthcare providers in central Pennsylvania to implement an effective employee retention strategy while helping patients with their personal finances and assisting with foreclosure prevention efforts.
      • Moderator: Terri L. Redmond, Director of Counseling, PHFA
      • Panelists: Jeffrey R. Martin, MD, Lancaster General Hospital; Todd Capitao, Division Manager, Ann B. Barshinger Financial Empowerment Center for Lancaster County, Tabor Community Services; Cyndi Boozer, Tenant Service Representative, Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health; Miriam Soto, Director of Homeownership, Lancaster Housing Opportunity Partnership
    4. Bus Tour of Sunflower Fields – 2015 PHFA Innovation in Design Award Winner: Come see this exciting new workforce housing development located just outside the city of Harrisburg. Completed in 2017, it consists of 35 general-occupancy, single-family, detached homes. The development received 900 applications, according to Monarch Development. What makes it special is that Sunflower Fields is a rental development which, after 15 years, will convert to homeownership. Don’t miss this chance to hear the developer’s story about the property, see the homes, and walk the one-acre community garden. Sunflower Fields was a 2015 Low-Income Housing Tax Credit recipient. The bus tour is limited to 44 people. (See sidebar in Forum program for more details about Sunflower Fields.)
      • Tour guides: PHFA staff and a Monarch Development LLC representative
    5. Innovative Ideas and Approaches to Address Housing Repair Needs: Forthcoming research by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia reveals extensive and costly home repair needs nationwide, but research by the Philadelphia Fed also documents home improvement lending disparities by income, race, and sex in communities in Pennsylvania. With barriers to addressing a demonstrated need, how are leaders improving substandard housing conditions in their communities? This panel will discuss innovative strategies that the public, private, and non-profit sectors employ to improve the quality of housing stock in communities across the state.
      • Moderator and presenter: Jimmy Gastner, Community Engagement Associate, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia
      • Other panelists: Coleen Baumert, Homeownership Director, PHFA; Ray D’Agostino, Executive Director, Lancaster Housing Opportunity Partnership; Jesse Ergott, President and CEO, NeighborWorks Northeastern Pennsylvania; Jill Roberts, Program Director of Restore, Repair, Renew Loan Program, Clarifi
    6. HEMAP: What's New, And What If HEMAP Never Existed?: Join this session for an update about the Homeowners' Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program. We'll take a look at where the program is today. We'll hear from Ira Goldstein from the Reinvestment Fund speaking about what would have happened if Pennsylvania didn't have HEMAP. Plus we'll get an update on the progress of the RX Office program as it relates to HEMAP and how it will help our HEMAP counselors better help homeowners facing foreclosure.
      • Moderator: Diane Hoffman, Manager of Accounting for HEMAP, PHFA
      • Panelists: Ira Goldstein, Ph.D., President, Policy Solutions, Reinvestment Fund; Lori Toia, HEMAP Director, PHFA; Justin Coleman, Business Development Officer, Counseling Office, PHFA


 Educational Sessions D
    1. Alternative Approaches to Affordable Housing Development: Hear from two well-known Pennsylvania professors leading pioneering research in the field of affordable housing. Dr. Kevin Gillen, author of the quarterly Philadelphia Regional Housing Price Indices, will share some of his recent research analyzing the cost/benefit tradeoffs between new construction versus the rehabilitation of existing housing. Dr. Gillen explores which business model is better suited to provide both better and more affordable housing to the commonwealth, given its underlying economic fundamentals. Taking a different research approach, Professor Stephanie Sena has gained headlines and public interest with her focus on the benefits and challenges of using micro-housing, coupled with community building and services, to stretch scarce housing dollars to better shelter more people. Learn from two outstanding researchers with unique perspectives on the best path forward for more quality affordable housing in Pennsylvania.
      • Moderator: Scott Davis, GIS Technician, PHFA
      • Panelists: Kevin C. Gillen, Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow, Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation, Drexel University; Stephanie Sena, Professor, Villanova University
    2. Building a Financial House from the Big House: Economic stability is a major challenge for ex-offenders returning to their community. A reentrant that lacks basic financial readiness (i.e., money sources, knowledge, and skills) is less likely to make sustainable, pro-social choices, and is at a greater risk of recidivism. This session will introduce how comprehensive financial education is impacting the financial behaviors, change in attitudes, and perceived readiness for reentry of incarcerated veterans in Pennsylvania's state correctional institutions, as well as how veterans with long-term sentences are giving back by delivering financial education as part of reentry services. This session will also discuss how financial education is being used as part of reentrant housing programs and a local reentry coalition.
      • Moderator: Holly Zugay, Financial Education Officer, PHFA
      • Panelists: AliceAnne Frost, CEO, The Program, It's about Change; Keith Sultzbaugh, Accountable Prison Ministry; Barry Nazar, President, Capital Region Ex-Offender Support Coalition
    3. State and Federal Government Update: Anyone working in housing must always keep an eye on potential legislative and regulatory changes that could affect the housing marketplace. Through its policymaking, and by virtue of resources they may provide, Congress and the Pennsylvania General Assembly can powerfully shape opportunities for housing development. Don't miss this chance to hear firsthand from key federal, state and industry representatives, and gain their perspective on the direction of housing policy for the coming year.
      • Moderator: Melissa Grover, Government Affairs Director, PHFA
      • Panelists: Speakers will include key staff members from the Pennsylvania House and Senate; Joe DeFelice, Regional Administrator of the Mid-Atlantic Region, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development; Jennifer Schwartz, Director of Tax and Housing Advocacy, National Council of State Housing Agencies
    4. Ask the PA Funders: Hear the latest news on state and federal funding programs and how to best coordinate resources in your housing initiative or development. Key representatives from the Department of Community and Economic Development, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh and the PHFA will answer your questions and provide guidance on how to make your housing vision become reality. NOTE: This session will be videotaped. It will be available for viewing later on the Forum website.
      • Moderator and presenter: Holly Glauser, Director of Development, PHFA
      • Panelists: Kathy Possinger, Director, Center of Community & Housing Development, PA Dept. of Community and Economic Development; Fred Banuelos, Community Investment Business Development Manager, FHLBank of Pittsburgh; Bryce Maretzki, Director of Strategic Planning and Policy, PHFA
    5. Identifying Resources to Make Housing Affordable to Extremely Low Income Individuals and Families – Coordinating Section 811 and National Housing Trust Funds in Your Development: The challenges in accessing capital for the development of affordable rental housing and the provision of rental assistance to vulnerable populations continues. Restrictions on various funding programs often impact the financial feasibility of a development and who can be served. PHFA administers the Section 811 program, which provides rental assistance for people with disabilities, and the National Housing Trust Fund makes capital funds available for properties that set aside units for extremely low-income individuals. Learn from representatives of PHFA and the development community how to best coordinate the income and occupancy requirements of these significant funding programs.
      • Moderator and presenter: Lisa Case, Manager of Program Operations, PHFA
      • Panelists: Kristen Nagel, 811 Program Administrator, PHFA; Ann Mermelstein, Senior Development Officer, PHFA; Jo Raff, Director of Property Management, Community Basics, Inc
    6. Is There Progress in the Fight Against Homelessness?: The last few years have seen a concerted effort to end homelessness trying new approaches supported with additional funding. A renewed focus on ending homelessness among veterans, for instance, has had some success. Come learn from experts in Pennsylvania with years of experience in this area and get their perspective on what is working and what could be done better.
      • Moderator and presenter: Jennifer Koppel, Director, Lancaster County Coalition to End Homelessness, and PHFA Board Member
      • Other panelists: Ben Laudermilch, Special Assistant to the Secretary, PA Department of Corrections; Kelly Blechertas, Program Reporting Specialist, York County Planning Commission; Leigh Howard, President, DMA - Diana T. Myers & Associates, Inc.; Elizabeth Hersh, Director of Homeless Services, City of Philadelphia


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