Hope for Housing (Update: And Carrión)

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Sunday, December 14, 2008
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President-elect Barack Obama named Shaun Donovan, chair of the city’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD bio), to serve as his Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. The announcement came during his weekly web-address:

AN had heard from a number sources that Donovan–an outside candidate–had taken a month off in late October and early November to prepare a white paper on affordable housing for the Obama campaign, though HPD did not return numerous calls seeking confirmation on this or his possible nomination. Well, now it’s official.

If confirmed, Donovan will be returning Washington, where he served as Deputy Assistant Commissioner for Multi-Family Housing in the Clinton Administration. A graduate of Harvard, Donovan has been acclaimed for his work on the mayor’s New Housing Marketplace plan, which seeks to create 165,000 affordable units over a decade through construction and preservation.

Get acquainted with the appointee’s thoughts on housing policy, which AN published after a chat with Donovan last year.

Update: Both Posts–that being The New York Post and The Washington Postare reporting that Bronx Borough President Adolofo Carrión Jr. will serve as Director of Urban Policy for the Obama administration. The Bronx Beep had been also in the running for the HUD position, though whether he has been awarded a greater or lesser prize remains to be seen as the exact mandate of directorship has yet to be laid out by the administration, as we reported.

Carrión is less known for his work on land-use issues than his compatriots in Manhattan and Brooklyn–partly a result of the relative levels of development in each borough–though the Baychester-raised Bronxite did receive a masters in planning from Hunter, according to his official biography, followed by stints at the Department of City Planning, Bronx CB5, and local non-profit developer Promesa before he moved to City Council and then the borough presidents office.

Politco points out that the number of New Yorkers in Obama’s cabinet is beginning to rival the number of Illini there, which hopefully means the Feds will stop ignoring the city as it has in the past.

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