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Labor and Economic Opportunity

MSHDA Board closer to naming permanent executive director, approves loan and bond commitments for affordable housing projects

October 26, 2021

Media Contacts:
Katie Bach, BachK@michigan.gov
Anna Vicari, VicariA@michigan.gov


Lansing, Mich. - The Michigan State Housing Development Authority Board took a step toward naming a new executive director last week, approving a resolution that allows Board Chairwoman Susan Corbin to extend a conditional offer to a preferred candidate. 

After lengthy discussion of the five applicants who participated in public interviews in July and August, the board narrowed its scope to two candidates then said Amy Hovey, special projects coordinator for the C.S. Mott Foundation headquartered in Flint, emerged as the preferred candidate. The decision was not unanimous.

The board identified and discussed the qualifications of Kelly Rose, MSHDA chief housing solutions officer, the second finalist. Other candidates reviewed included Cami M. Freeman, director of innovation, Illinois Housing Development Authority; Anthony Lentych, executive director, Traverse City and Elk Rapids housing commissions; and Sandra Pearson, president/CEO, Habitat for Humanity of Michigan.

Before her hire to the Civil Service position is approved, the board said Hovey must clear conflict of interest hurdles related to her spouse's business interests with MSHDA. Her hire is subject to review and approval of the State Ethics Review Board and an exception and waiver from the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Detroit Field Office.

Hovey would be the first woman to be named executive director of MSHDA (in a non-acting capacity) in its 55-year history. Corbin briefly held the position of acting executive director of the Authority several years ago.

"We had five outstanding candidates, and the majority of the board believes Amy offers unique private, public and nonprofit experience and extensive understanding of the housing industry," Corbin said. Citing Hovey's other roles working as a chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee (D-Flint), for the Center for Community Progress and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), Corbin added, "She is a true professional who brings creativity to problem solving and discussions around housing and is known for getting projects done."

Gary Heidel, who has been serving in an acting executive director capacity for more than two years, withdrew his candidacy for the permanent position earlier this year. He will return to his previous role as MSHDA's chief housing investment officer when the permanent executive director is in place.

In other action, the Board:

  • Approved a loan and tax-exempt bond commitments totaling $35,858,517 for Hartland Senior Living, a 146-unit new construction senior housing development in Hartland Township that will include 61 affordable units.
  • Mortgage loan and tax-exempt bond commitments for Hechtman I in West Bloomfield Township. The development, located in the Applebaum Campus Condominium complex, will utilize the $42,760,195 commitment to undertake rehabilitation efforts on the development's 102 one-bedroom senior living apartments.
  • A Housing Development Fund grant to Habitat for Humanity of Michigan in the amount of $1,175,000 to support the organization's Down Payment Assistance efforts, Priority Home Repair program, and Prison Build program.