Contact: Charla Jackson Peter
(502) 564-7630, ext. 454
On Thursday, October 13, awards honoring excellence in affordable
housing were presented at the 2011 Kentucky Affordable Housing
Conference in Lexington.
Kentucky Housing Corporation (KHC), the conference host and state
housing finance agency, sponsored the awards to honor builders,
nonprofit organizations, and others who have made outstanding
contributions to the state’s affordable housing industry in the last
Becky Bleemel received the 2011 Homeownership Award
for her outstanding service and innovative achievement in providing
affordable homeownership solutions to Kentuckians. Ms. Bleemel lets
clients know they are her clients for life and not to hesitate to call
her if any question or concern arises, even after the loan has closed.
The 2011 Nonprofit Organization Award was presented to Kentucky Domestic Violence Association (KDVA),
which recently opened KDVA Homes, a project 5 years in the making.
KDVA Homes is 48 units of permanent supportive housing for domestic
violence victims and their families who are at or below 60 percent of
area median income. The goal of the housing project is to help victims
and their families become empowered and self-sufficient. Units are
located in four cities throughout the Commonwealth: Louisville,
Morehead, Murray, and Paducah.
Receiving the 2011 Nonprofit Affordable Housing Builder Award was Buckeye Community Hope Foundation,
for outstanding service and contributions in building affordable
housing for Kentuckians. Buckeye Community Hope Foundation has
developed more than 40 Low Income Housing Tax Credit projects, three
HOPE VI planning grants, and two implementation grants in the early
1990’s. They partnered with Kentucky Housing Corporation and several
other entities to develop Walnut Forest, a rehabilitated 48-unit
apartment complex in Franklin, Kentucky, and Taylorsville Place, a
24-unit, new construction complex in Taylorsville, Kentucky.
The 2011 Energy Efficiency Leadership Award was presented to Louisville Metro Housing Authority
for steadfast leadership in implementing and coordinating strategies
and solutions to improve energy efficiency in Kentucky homes. The
agency has aggressively invested in new and renovated energy efficient
housing and offices throughout the city. Their premier green site is
Liberty Green, a HOPE VI Revitalization project currently nearing
completion on six blocks in downtown Louisville. The site's name aptly
describes the community's environmental standards. Every rental and
homeownership unit at the site is constructed per Energy Star efficiency
guidelines and equipped with Energy Star labeled appliances, resulting
in significant utility cost savings to residents.
Da-Ranco, Inc. received the 2011 For-Profit Affordable Housing Builder Award.
Da-Ranco works to assist homebuyers in south-central Kentucky, an area
often overlooked by developers. By using a mix of private bank funds
and funds from the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, Da-Ranco helps
many Kentuckians with disabilities. Recently, the company completed a
project housing modifying the living unit of a legally-blind couple to
accommodate the couple's visual needs. The company also assisted an
extremely low-income family of a 17-year-old girl who suffered a
traumatic brain injury in an automobile accident 5 years ago. The
family's dilapidated mobile home was unfit for their daughter's
extensive needs. Da-Ranco stepped in and built the family a brand new,
two-bedroom unit with full handicap access, allowing the family to bring
their daughter home from a nursing care facility.
J. Dale Sights was awarded the 2011 Homeless Leadership Award
for providing steadfast leadership in implementing and coordinating
strategies and solutions to end homelessness in Kentucky. Mr. Sights is
a successful businessman and a civic leader within his hometown
community. He is a member of the Governor’s Task Force for Recovery
Kentucky and the CEO of the Women’s Addiction Recovery Manor (WARM).
Mr. Sights' passion for recovery is evident as he speaks about the WARM
center and the many people who have rebuilt their lives through his
intervention and placement into recovery centers. As he walks down the
halls of the WARM center, Mr. Sights addresses each individual by name
and knows his or her story. But for his wide reach and passion, many of
the individuals who he encounters daily would be homeless. He is a
driving force of support in our state’s battle against homelessness.
The Mae Street Kidd Award is presented to an individual who
has demonstrated outstanding public service and made great strides in
promoting affordable housing for Kentuckians. Don Clem started
with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in 1986,
working in the former Assisted Housing Management Branch. He retired
as director of the Louisville HUD Office of Public Housing. Mr. Clem is
considered a top Housing Choice Voucher program analyst/adviser and
coordinated much of the successful goal attainment of the Southeast
Network of Public and Indian Housing. He was most proud when he could
translate program success into the number of families and individuals
who received housing and/or services.
The recipient of the 2011 Dorothy J. Williams Lifetime Achievement Award,
which is awarded to an individual who has devoted much of their career
to helping make the dream of affordable housing a reality in Kentucky,
was Abraham Williams. Mr. Williams started
his career as the housing manager for the Phenix City Housing Authority
in Alabama in 1977. Managing 650 units of public housing, he created
youth sports, elderly, after-school, and job opportunity programs. In
1987, he became the housing director responsible for 1,092 housing
units, 600 Section-8 units, and all educational, sporting, and elderly
Mr. Williams came to Kentucky in 1995 when he
accepted the position as executive director of the Housing Authority of
Bowling Green. In his time there, Mr. Williams created a variety of
programs, including homeownership, elderly, youth, and sports for
housing residents, as well as the local community.
Also recognized was Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing for its contributions as a partnering agency in the conference.
“Many Kentuckians benefit from these individuals and agencies
assisting us in providing safe, quality, affordable housing,” said KHC’s
CEO Richard L. McQuady. “KHC cannot do it alone, and we are proud to
call all of those who work with us ‘partners.’”
Kentucky Housing would also like to recognize this year’s pint-size
winners from KHC’s 2011 “My Own Kentucky Home” Art Contest. All
promotional materials for the 2011 Kentucky Affordable Housing
Conference used artwork submitted by children across the state for
previous years’ contests, which awards children in three age groups. In
2011, the winners were Courtney Lynn Scott, from Louisville, Kentucky,
for the 10-12 age group; Sadie Wilkerson, from Owensboro, Kentucky, for
the 7-9 age group; and Wolfsion Goff, from Shelbyville, Kentucky, for
the 6 and under age group.
Kentucky Housing Corporation, the state
housing finance agency, was created by the 1972 General Assembly to
provide affordable housing opportunities. As a self-supporting, public
corporation, Kentucky Housing offers lower-than-market rate home
mortgages, housing production financing, homeownership
education/counseling, rental assistance, housing rehabilitation, and
supportive housing programs for special needs populations.
For more information, contact:
Kentucky Housing Corporation | 1231 Louisville Rd., Frankfort,
502-564-7630; 800-633-8896 (KY only); TTY 711