National Nonprofit Affordable Housing Collaborative Names New President/CEO
Washington, DC, December 16, 2019 – The Board of Directors of Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future (SAHF), a nonprofit collaborative of thirteen multi-state nonprofit affordable housing providers, today announced the appointment of Andrea Ponsor as President and Chief Executive Officer.
Ponsor, who joined SAHF in 2016, has served as the organization’s Interim President/CEO, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President for Policy. She has helped lead the organization’s efforts to develop new approaches for the creation and preservation of affordable housing through partnerships; formulated policy proposals; and worked with lawmakers and regulators offer practice-based solutions for the production, preservation and operation of affordable rental homes.
“The board is extremely pleased to appoint Andrea Ponsor as SAHF President and CEO,” said Aaron Gornstein, Chair of the SAHF Board and CEO of Preservation of Affordable Housing. “Her dedication to our mission and work at the intersection of housing and residents’ well-being over the past three years and her notable previous experience in affordable housing transactions and policy make her an outstanding choice for this leadership position.”
SAHF member organizations collectively own more than 140,000 affordable rental homes in 49 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, enriched with services that support residents’ health and wellness, economic mobility, increased opportunity and improved quality of life.
The group’s goals include: increasing and preserving the supply of quality affordable rental housing; promoting positive environmental and health outcomes in affordable rental housing through quality design and operations; and advancing the growth and effectiveness of high-performing nonprofit affordable rental housing providers committed to long-term affordability.
“I joined the SAHF team three years ago because I believed this innovative collaborative was the most impactful place to use my policy and transactional experience to help advance equity and opportunity for people of limited economic means.,” said Ponsor. “I look forward to continuing to work with SAHF’s members, partners and staff to build broad support and strategies for creating healthy, sustainable and affordable homes for all people.”
Prior to joining SAHF, Ponsor served as the federal policy director for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and was a principal at Hessel, Aluise and Neun, P.C., a boutique law firm with a national affordable housing practice, where she represented lenders, developers and management agents in affordable housing transactions and policy matters.
She began her career as an attorney with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in Atlanta, GA where she focused on multifamily mortgage closings, property disposition, program enforcement and fair housing.
SAHF has also appointed Sandra V. Serna as Vice President of Health and Housing to lead the organization’s continuing collaboration with health systems, payers, and others to improve the health of affordable housing residents and their communities.
“We see an emerging consensus among corporate and community leaders across the country who agree that the affordable housing crisis is affecting the nation’s health,” Serna said. “We welcome these new partners and are exploring new ways to work with them to improve healthcare access, reduce healthcare costs, increase housing supply and improve health outcomes of residents of affordable housing.”
Prior to joining SAHF, Serna led the Healthy Communities Portfolio at Louisiana Public Health Institute (LPHI) where she oversaw projects with an emphasis on using health, transportation, economic, and environmental data for community-wide collaboration and planning. Serna spearheaded LPHI’s advocacy efforts to promote fair and affordable housing in the Greater New Orleans region. Prior to that, she provided strategy support and technical assistance to local United Ways committed to making their communities healthier places to live, learn, work and play. From 2008 to 2011, Ms. Serna was a program manager at the National Coalition of STD Directors (NCSD), a national public health membership organization.