NeighborWorks America Names New Regional Directors


Washington, D.C. – April 13, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — NeighborWorks® America, one of the nation’s largest community development corporations, today named Deborah Boatright and John Santner, Directors for the Northeast Region and Midwest Region, respectively.  Each Regional Director will oversee two District offices – the Great Lakes and North Central Districts in the Midwest Region and the Northeast and New England districts in the Northeast Region.  The move is intended to increase the efficiency of NeighborWorks America and enhance the corporation’s ability to meet the needs of its network of award winning, locally-based community development nonprofit businesses. Santner formerly was District Director for the NeighborWorks America North Central District, while Boatright formerly was District Director for the corporation’s Northeast District.

Eileen Fitzgerald, Acting CEO of NeighborWorks America, described the changes as a natural next step in NeighborWorks America’s efforts to continuously enhance its relationship with the network of more than 235 NeighborWorks® organizations. She added that the move streamlines the corporation’s ability to help the network meet the housing, financial capability and broad community needs of the more than 270,000 families assisted year – the principal goals of NeighborWorks America.

“Deborah and John are seasoned leaders who will undoubtedly bring new efficiency to how NeighborWorks America interacts with, learns from and has long-term community impact with the network affiliates in their regions,” explained Fitzgerald.

“I am truly honored to be able to serve communities from New England through the Mid-Atlantic on behalf of NeighborWorks America, and to support the incredible work of our network affiliates. NeighborWorks organizations are having significant impact during these turbulent times, helping families and communities to secure a brighter future,” said Boatright, who will oversee the region through offices in Boston, New York and Baltimore.

Boatright joined NeighborWorks America five years ago as the District Director for the Northeast District. Since joining, she has been instrumental in forging new partnerships that reached underserved communities throughout the District while assisting the District’s 29 affiliate organizations to sustain capacity and impact during the economic downturn.   The Northeast Region contains 79 network affiliates, spread among 11 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Prior to joining NeighborWorks  America, Boatright served as an Assistant Commissioner, Office of Community Development of the NYS Division of Housing and Community Renewal (now NYS Homes and Community Renewal) where she supervised housing and community development activities of regional offices; oversaw community based housing programs statewide as well as the Housing Trust Fund and Tax Credit Programs. Boatright’s many accomplishments throughout her career include the implementation of NYC’s breakthrough anti-abandonment housing initiative.  Boatright earned her Master’s Degree in Policy Analysis and Urban Affairs at The New School; and was a Fannie Mae Fellow at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government.

Said John Santner, the new Midwest Region Director: “It’s a privilege to work for NeighborWorks® America and I’m excited by my new responsibilities and the opportunity to work with such a diverse group of nonprofit organizations.” The NeighborWorks America Midwest Region has offices in Kansas City and Cincinnati.

Santner joined NeighborWorks America in 1998 as a Management Consultant and was appointed North Central District Director in 2002.  The North Central District encompassed ten upper Midwest states.  Since becoming District Director, Santner has successfully built public sector partnerships that focused resources on creating strong communities, through quality housing and business development. The Midwest Region contains 50 network affiliates, across 13 states.

Prior to joining NeighborWorks America, Santner worked for a community development corporation in Kansas City in single and multi-family housing development, property management and asset management.   A graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, Santner served on active duty in a teaching and quality control capacity for missile crew development.   During this time he earned an MBA from University of Missouri. After leaving the Air Force, Santner earned a Master of Divinity degree and was pastor in the Kansas City area for eight years.

Composition of the NeighborWorks Network

The Midwest Region is comprised of NeighborWorks network organizations in the following states: North Central District: Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wisconsin; Great Lakes District:  Ohio, Michigan and Indiana.

The Northeast Region is comprised of NeighborWorks network organizations in the following states and territories: New England District:  Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut;  Northeast District:  New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

NeighborWorks America also has three district offices: the Southern District, under the leadership of District Director Don Phoenix, comprised of NeighborWorks network organizations in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia, and Virginia; the Rocky Mountain District managed by District Director Gary Wolfe, comprised of NeighborWorks network organization in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Texas and Wyoming; and the Pacific District, led by Margaret Frisbee,  comprised of NeighborWorks network organizations in Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington.

About NeighborWorks® America
NeighborWorks® America creates opportunities for people to improve their lives and strengthen their communities by providing access to homeownership and to safe and affordable rental housing. In the last five years, NeighborWorks organizations have generated $20 billion in reinvestment in these communities. NeighborWorks America is the nation’s leading trainer of community development and affordable housing professionals.

Douglas Robinson
Media Relations Manager
NeighborWorks America