BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The vision, commitment and thought leadership of our Board of Directors guides and inspires HAND’s strategic vision. Representing higher education, homeless services, property management, real estate, investment, financial services and government agencies, each director brings a wealth of experience and knowledge that supports HAND’s response to the growing demand for affordable housing in diverse, thriving communities. The board’s extensive backgrounds intersect the many segments represented within HAND’s membership, adding to the overall diversity of the organization.
President, Sarah S. Constant
Sarah S. Constant, Mission First Housing Group
Sarah Constant is the Senior Vice President, Real Estate Development of Mission First Housing Group, which she joined in 2000. Since its inception, Sarah has secured over $285 million in financing and developed over 1600 units of affordable housing development, primarily in the Baltimore / Washington D.C. Metro area. As the principal relationship manager for Mission First, Sarah establishes and maintains partnerships with developers, non-profit entities and financial institutions in order to create affordable housing. Sarah provides experienced oversight of all real estate development activity from the initial “what if” conversation through contract negotiations, construction and cost certification, including developing financing strategies, coordination of project financing and all loan closings. Before joining Mission First, Sarah worked for Fleet National Bank in Boston as a Vice President in Commercial Real Estate. Sarah received her MBA from Boston University and her BA in Urban Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. In addition, Sarah is an active member of the Alexandria community where she lives with her husband and two children.
In the always-challenging and ever-evolving affordable housing industry, HAND has been a remarkably steady presence, providing opportunities for training and networking among all disciplines – law, design, construction, finance, property management, asset management and all the others – for HAND members who have committed themselves to this important work.”
—Sarah S. Constant
Meghan Altidor is a partner at Nixon Peabody and the deputy leader of the firm’s Affordable Housing Transactional team. Meghan represents nonprofit and for-profit developers in acquiring, constructing, rehabilitating, and operating affordable housing developments around the country.
Meghan focuses her practice on complex financings of affordable housing developments that include tax-exempt bonds, low-income housing tax credits, and often other federal, state, and local government subsidies. Meghan’s practice covers all aspects of development from dirt real estate to securing regulatory approvals such as HUD RAD conversion approvals and nonprofit asset transfer approvals.
From her training as an urban planner to her first legal work representing a tenant association to secure its rights under the DC Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act, Meghan has committed her career to thinking about how affordable housing can transform the lives of those who live in it. She is particularly interested in legal issues nonprofits face, supportive housing models, and various efforts to rethink public housing, such as the RAD program. Meghan frequently speaks about housing issues at national conferences such as IPED, IRHP, NH&RA, and NYSAFAH; is active with several affordable housing boards and advisory groups; and is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center.
Meghan earned her Bachelor of Science from Georgetown University, her Master’s degree in Urban Studies and Planning from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.
I’m honored to join the board of this dynamic organization that has set itself apart with a commitment to racial equity at its core as it tackles the complicated issue of housing for all who call Greater Washington home.”
—Meghan C. Altidor
Winell Belfonte, CohnReznick
A long time resident of the Washington D.C. metropolitan area, Winell is a CPA and Audit Partner of the national accounting and auditing firm CohnReznick. Winell resides in the firm’s national office located in Bethesda, Maryland, where she has served clients nationwide for more than 25 years. She is responsible for planning and performing all aspects of nonprofit, affordable housing real estate and commercial audits, accounting and financial reporting engagements. In addition to managing client relationships, she is involved in many firm-wide training programs and serves as a classroom instructor for many of these programs. An active member of the community, Winell serves on the local nonprofit housing board of Transitional Housing Corporation and Transitional Housing Corporation Affordable Housing and the Center for Nonprofit Advancement. She serves as the firm liaison to the Strength Matters CFO Initiative of Neighborworks America. She frequently consults with Board members of her various non profit clients. She also serves on the Advisory Board to the School of Business at Bowie State University. She is a graduate of the 2010 class of Leadership Greater Washington. She received her bachelor’s degree in accounting from Bowie State University, summa cum laude. She is a member of the AICPA and MACPA.
I am honored to serve on the board of HAND with such a committed and esteemed group of advocates for affordable housing. CohnReznick supports the organization’s commitment to supporting the developers of affordable communities in the Washington, DC area.”
—Winell Belfonte, CPA
Derrick N. Perkins, Bank of America
Derrick Perkins is a SVP and Market Executive, based in Washington, DC. His primary role is the coverage of affordable housing developers based in suburban MD, Washington, DC, Virginia and Georgia. His responsibilities also include leading the Bank’s national Charter School construction lending efforts.
Derrick joined NationsBank in 1998 in the Consumer Credit Card division as an Account Manager in Norfolk, VA. In 2000 he accepted a role as a Portfolio Management Associate in the Business Banking division in Richmond, VA. Subsequently, in 2002, Derrick relocated to Mclean, VA to work in the Middle Market banking group as a credit analyst and eventually an Underwriter. After four years in Middle Market banking he accepted a role within Community Development Lending, underwriting affordable housing developers and charter school facilities. Derrick accepted his most current role as a Relationship Manager in the fall of 2013 and added the charter school responsibilities in 2015.
Derrick holds a Bachelor’s degree from Hampton University and a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning from Virginia Commonwealth University.
HAND is an extraordinary organization indirectly improving the lives of low and moderate income individuals and families in the Washington region. I look forward to the opportunity to learn, serve and grow as a newly appointed member of the board.”
Brett Macleod, JPMorgan Chase
Brett Macleod is an Executive Director at JPMorgan Chase in the Community Development Banking group, where he finances affordable housing and urban revitalization real estate projects throughout the Mid- Atlantic. Prior to joining JPMC in April 2012, he was a Banker at Citigroup in the Citi Community Capital division. Brett has originated over $1 billion of loans for a variety of deal types, including affordable rental properties, for- sale housing projects, mixed-use real estate deals and large-scale urban retail centers. Brett currently serves as a board member for Cinnaire (formerly known as Great Lakes Capital Fund) and National Housing Trust Community Development Fund and previously served as Treasurer for the DC Promise Neighborhood Initiative and Board Chair for Acorn Hill Waldorf Kindergarten and Nursery School. He holds two BA’s from Williams College and earned an MBA, magna cum laude, from the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College with concentrations in Finance and Global Management.
I have always been impressed by the great work that HAND does to support and grow the affordable housing industry in the Mid-Atlantic region. I am excited to join the Board and get more involved with this amazing organization.”
Maria Day-Marshall, University of Maryland Colvin Institute of Real Estate Development
Ms. Maria Day-Marshall, Esq., joined the Real Estate Development Program at the University of Maryland in July 2017, and currently serves as its Director and as Clinical Associate Professor. In February 2018, she added the directorship of the Colvin Institute of Real Estate Development to her responsibilities. As the Director of the Program, Day-Marshall provides programmatic and disciplinary leadership in the areas of curriculum development; faculty recruitment, guidance and evaluation; student recruitment and advising; and, course scheduling. Previously, Day-Marshall served as a Lecturer for the Real Estate Development Program from 2008 until she joined it full-time as Director.
Prior to joining the University as Director, Day-Marshall worked for the District of Columbia Housing Finance Agency beginning in November 2009 and served as the Interim Executive Director and General Counsel to the Agency. She was responsible for the overall supervision, coordination and management of the Agency and for all legal matters for the Agency. From 2004 to 2009, Day-Marshall was a Senior Business Development Manager in Fannie Mae’s Community Lending Channel. She was responsible for business development, underwriting, legal documentation review, and transaction execution and closing related to two direct loan products that financed housing development and rehabilitation projects, and that were offered to governmental entities.
Day-Marshall has been involved in the municipal finance industry for over 30 years. Prior to joining Fannie Mae from 1982 to 1996, she served in financially and legally related positions in the District government. During her tenure, she served as Treasurer of the District of Columbia for five years preceded by terms as Deputy Treasurer and Debt Manager. As Treasurer, she was responsible for the issuance of $6 billion of debt for the District and other DC government issuers. Subsequently, Day-Marshall served as a financial consultant to the DC Water and Sewer Authority during its transition from a division within the Department of Public Works to an independent regional authority. She assisted in preparing the Authority for its first debt issuance.
Day-Marshall joined Columbia Equity Financial Corp., an independent financial advisory firm, in 1999 as Senior Vice President. While working at the firm, Day-Marshall was involved in an array of tax-exempt and taxable bond transactions, and served as financial advisor to a multitude of governmental entities including, among others, Municipalities, Transportation Authorities, Public Housing Authorities, Housing Finance Agencies and Redevelopment Authorities.
Day-Marshall has lectured extensively during her tenure with the District of Columbia government and subsequently about topics affecting the municipal finance industry. She is the recipient of two Distinguished Public Service Awards granted by two mayors of the District of Columbia, and a Certificate of Appreciation granted by a third mayor. The DC Council enacted a resolution in 1996 recognizing her contributions to the District of Columbia. She is a member of the District of Columbia Bar and other associations. Day-Marshall earned a Master of Laws in Taxation degree from Georgetown University Law Center, a Juris Doctorate degree from the Columbus School of Law, Catholic University of America, and her undergraduate degree in Economics from Fisk University.
I have been a member of HAND for many years and greatly appreciate the work that it does in the affordable housing arena. It is a pleasure to be able to serve the organization as a member of the Board of Directors.”
—Maria Day-Marshall, Esq.
Christopher E. Donald was sworn-in as the Executive Director/CEO of the District of Columbia Housing Finance Agency (DCHFA) in March 2021. Mr. Donald served the Agency as the Interim and Acting Executive Director/CEO from January 2020-March 2021. He is responsible for the overall supervision, coordination, and strategic direction of the District of Columbia Housing Finance Agency. Mr. Donald joined the Agency in October 2016 as the Senior Vice President of Multifamily Lending and Neighborhood Investments where he served as part of DCHFA’s senior management team. His primary responsibility was to manage the day-to-day operations of the Multifamily Lending and Neighborhood Investments (formerly Public Finance) department and assist the Executive Director & CEO with the development of multifamily programs, products, polices and strategic planning.
Mr. Donald has over 15 years of experience in real estate finance, community building, development, land entitlement and construction. He’s entitled over 1MM square feet of mixed-income, transit-oriented, amenity-rich housing. Mr. Donald specializes in acquisitions, entitlement, community visioning and deal structuring. He has completed over $1 billion in real estate financing over the course of his career and renovated over 1,000 multifamily units and entitled and underwritten almost 3,500 multifamily units throughout Northern Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia. Mr. Donald has also acquired and programmed commercial space for small local businesses and retailers.
As the Director of Development at the Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing (APAH), Mr. Donald underwrote and structured $60MM in Low Income Housing Tax Credit transactions. Over the last several years he has provided underwriting services to the Office of State Superintendent for Education for the District of Columbia and financed over $300 million in improvements for public charter schools using New Markets Tax Credits, tax exempt bonds and other tools. Mr. Donald began his career in finance at Lehman Brothers in the Municipal Finance Group and underwrote $200MM in revenue bonds for the District of Columbia.
Prior to his tenure at DCHFA, Mr. Donald served as the Principal and Co-Founder of The Leidesdorff Group. The Leidesdorff Group (TLG) is a diversified real estate advisory firm focused on the regeneration of urban communities within the Mid-Atlantic region. As a principal of TLG, Mr. Donald focused on distressed and disinvested urban communities. Mr. Donald serves as the secretary on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Local Housing Finance Agencies (NALHFA) and DCHFA. From 2018-2020 he served on the boards of the African American Real Estate Professionals of D.C. and the Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers (HAND) boards. Mr. Donald is a member of the Urban Land Institute. He is a graduate of Stanford University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.
Gregory Hare, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development
Gregory is a longtime resident of Baltimore and has worked to advance affordable housing in the region for over a decade. Prior to this post, Gregory served as the Deputy Director for the Multifamily Rental Service Programs. Before joining the Department, Gregory served as the Administrator for the Housing Authority of Baltimore City in the Rental and Assisted Housing division. He holds a degree in Management Science and is a Certified Tax Credit Specialist, Financial Specialist, and holds a certification in Housing Choice Voucher Executive Management.
Affordable housing is a catalyst for growth in the region. Through collaboration and education, HAND expands organizational capacity and innovation among industry partners, while staying anchored in communities. I am excited to join the board as a newly appointed member. I look forward to learning and sharing the local government perspective with this great group of housing leaders”.
Monique Johnson, Virginia Housing
Over the course of her career, Monique Johnson, Ph.D., GB’02, has served as a social enterprise leader, a community and economic development practitioner, and an advocate for next-generation leaders. Her 20 years of experience spans the non-profit and public sectors of commercial real estate development, small business and real estate finance, and organizational and talent development. After college, Monique stumbled into the world of community development. The work reconciles her interest in transforming the built environment with a commitment to catalyzing equitable development and access within communities of color. She currently serves as Managing Director of Community Outreach for Virginia Housing Development Authority.
Monique serves as a member of the Virginia Housing leadership team that provides strategic oversight of grant making and outreach initiatives. This team manages the delivery of over 500 grants, maintains relationships with over 800 housing delivery network partners, and develops housing education tools and training reaching thousands of individuals annually.
In her previous role as COO for the Better Housing Coalition (BHC), Monique worked with the CEO, CFO, and Board of Directors to formulate and operationalize the company’s strategic growth goals. BHC is among the top-performing high-capacity nonprofit developers in the country, having won numerous awards for its community impact, green building approaches, and innovative design models. Teaching, mentoring, and actively sponsoring young leaders has been a consistent theme throughout her career. Monique is an adjunct professor at Virginia Commonwealth University. She also launched a program in partnership with the Richmond chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) called CREW Careers to introduce minority girls to careers in commercial real estate. She obtained a Ph.D. in public policy and administration, an M.B.A. from the University of Richmond, and a bachelor of science in civil engineering from the University of Virginia.
Throughout her career, Monique has been recognized for several accomplishments in the field. She was awarded the Connect Commercial Real Estate’s Women in Real Estate Award and the National Association of Women Business Owners Richmond’s Woman of Excellence Community Leader Award (2019). She was recognized in VCU Alumni’s Ten Under Ten (2021), Commercial Real Estate Women Richmond’s Woman to Watch (2015), Virginia Housing Coalition’s Top 40 under 40 in Housing (2012) and Style Weekly Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40 (2009). She is also an active VCU Real Estate Circle of Excellence member.
Emi Reyes, Latino Economic Development Center
Meet Emi—a nonprofit executive, financial strategist, and force for good. As LEDC’s CEO, Emi brings more than a decade of strategic leadership experience, including five years at LEDC. With a passion for entrepreneurship and small business, Emi’s career has focused on transforming nonprofit and for-profit organizations by catalyzing change and fueling growth.
Born to Salvadoran immigrants who operated a family-owned restaurant, Emi’s foray into the world of small business and entrepreneurship started at a young age. While pursuing her degree in political science at Bennington College in Vermont, Emi co-founded the college’s first student farm, trained women entrepreneurs in South Korea in business communications and English, and organized hundreds of volunteers as a campaign fellow for Obama for America. Emi played a pivotal role in Chipotle Mexican Grill’s expansion strategy across New York, Maryland, and Washington, DC, spearheading operations across eight locations while directing up to 56 employees and multiple budgets of up to $12M.
Joining LEDC in 2017 as a Microfinance Lending Intern, Emi swiftly assumed positions of increasing responsibility, serving recently as Director of Operations & Risk Management and Chief of Operations, Risk & Investments. Strategizing with key leaders across the organization, Emi has steered funding and expansion initiatives while stewarding organizational assets and government funds with the utmost diligence.
A champion for small businesses, Emi chairs the Entrepreneurial & Food Jobs Working Group for the Mayor’s Food Policy Council to support the growth of minority food businesses in low-income areas. She resides in Washington, DC.
Jessica Venegas, Community Solutions
Jessica Venegas is Principal for Strategic Partnerships at Community Solutions International. She leads the organizational efforts to effectively leverage partnerships with the public and private sector to support successful community outcomes in ending homelessness.
Community Solutions leads a national effort, Built for Zero, that is working with over 70 communities in the US to end to veteran and chronic homelessness.
Jessica holds a B.A. in Urban Community Development from Azusa Pacific University and completed a graduate fellowship from the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Urban Redevelopment Excellence (CUREx). She is an Effective Leadership Fellow of Duke’s Center on Public Values and Leadership, and an Achieving Excellence Fellow of the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government. She is based in Washington, D.C. and Cambridge, MA
HAND plays a critical role in the DC region expanding learning and collaboration in the development community. I look forward to serving on the Board and working with the other Directors and talented staff of the organization to further our mission and impact.”
John Welsh, The NHP Foundation
John M. Welsh is the Senior Vice President at The NHP Foundation. John supervises a team responsible for project management and acquisitions at NHP Foundation. The team coordinates development activities—identifying sites, managing design team, undertaking entitlements, and project finance. Most recently, he spent nearly 24 years at AHC Inc., a nonprofit affordable housing and resident services organization based in Arlington, Virginia. During his tenure, AHC acquired/developed more than 6,200 multifamily units in the Washington-Baltimore Metropolitan region.
Previously, John was a project manager at Hope Housing in D.C., focusing on transitional housing development in The District of Columbia. Prior to moving to Washington, he worked in New York City for a commercial real estate brokerage firm. He holds a Master’s Degree in Regional Planning from Cornell University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from Villanova University. Civic activities: House Captain with Christmas in April/Rebuilding Together for 20 years, former ANC Commissioner, and past secretary of the D.C. Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development. Currently a board member at HAND, Housing Partnership Equity Trust (HPET), and a member of Lambda Alpha International (DC)
I am eager to join my esteemed colleagues on the HAND Board. HAND has been at the forefront of affordable housing for decades, bringing together the top affordable housing developers, financiers, and advocates. Together, we have learned from one another, and been able to do more to support the low- and moderate-incomes families in our region.”
Stephanie Williams, Bozzuto Management Company
Stephanie Williams, President of Bozzuto Management Company and Operating Partner of The Bozzuto Group, has remained focused on providing extraordinary experiences to residents, clients, partners and employees of the company since joining the company in 2004.
She directs the operations and an array of specialized initiatives for an apartment portfolio of 77,000 units across over 265 properties in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and Southern regions. In 2017, Stephanie earned the Multi-Housing News Excellence Award for Executive of the Year, was named Minority Business Leader by Washington Business Journal and was honored as a member of Baltimore Business Journal’s Top 40 Under 40. In 2018, under Stephanie’s leadership, Bozzuto Management Company was awarded #1 Property Management Company by the National Association of Home Builders. Stephanie is a Board member of the Real Estate Executive Council and an active member of the Urban Land Institute, and the District of Columbia Building Industry Association.
Stephanie earned a Bachelor of Arts in Community & Environmental Planning from the University of Washington, Seattle and a Masters of Community Planning from the University of Maryland, College Park. Washington, D.C. has been her proud home for the past 15 years and is where she lives today.
Making an impact on the communities in which we live is one of the most meaningful ways to pay it forward. As a preeminent organization actively serving diverse, working families in our neighborhoods, HAND is doing just that. I am thrilled and honored to grow and participate in its efforts as a newly appointed member of the board.”