Newton Interfaith Coalition for Housing Equity (NICHE) invites the community to its annual Spring Celebration on Tuesday, May 23, at 6:30 p.m., at Union Church in Waban (14 Collins Road, Newton). The event is free of charge, but donations are appreciated. NICHE advocates for affordable housing in Newton, and anyone interested in learning more is welcome to attend the celebration, which will include light refreshments. Contact us to R.s.v.p.
Ann Houston, chair of the Newton Affordable Housing Trust (NAHT), will be the featured speaker. NAHT works to preserve existing affordable housing units and create new affordable units for low and moderate income households (households that make less than 80 percent of the Area Median Income). The trust is able to create a streamlined process to provide funding to new affordable housing projects and take advantage of development opportunities that might otherwise not be available to the City of Newton.
Ms. Houston was the founding CEO of Opportunity Communities (OppCo) from 2018 to 2022. Previously, she led The Neighborhood Developers (TND) for nearly fifteen years. During her tenure, TND completed over $85 million of real estate development, including the Box District in Chelsea, recipient of the 2014 Urban Institute Jack Kemp Award for Excellence in Affordable and Workforce Housing.
It was at TND that Ms. Houston began to think about scale. If nonprofits had greater capacity, she reasoned, could they produce more affordable homes and vibrant communities? OppCo was the result of this line of inquiry.
Ms. Houston has a master’s degree in real estate development from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She is on the board of Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation, a New England CDFI lender and investor.