Keynote: Esther Sullivan, PhD
Esther Sullivan is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Colorado Denver. Her research focuses on poverty, spatial inequality, urban governance, and housing, with a special interest in both forced and voluntary relocation. Her 2018 book Manufactured Insecurity: Mobile Home Parks and Americans’ Tenuous Right to Place, winner of the Robert Park Book Award, provides examines the social, legal, geospatial, and market forces that intersect to create housing insecurity in manufactured housing communities, which provide a central source of affordable housing in the United States.
Help from Above: Breakthroughs in National and State Policy
From titling issues to resident protections to financing options, state and national policies have long prevented manufactured housing from being a truly equitable solution for affordable homeownership. Thankfully, the tide is starting to turn. In this session you’ll hear the federal perspective from Washington, how one west coast state is leading the way, and what’s changing—and still yet to come—here in Virginia.
- Doug Ryan, Senior Fellow, Prosperity Now
- Chelsea Catto, Manufactured Housing Senior Program Analyst, Oregon Housing and Community Services
- Christie Marra, Director of Housing Advocacy, Virginia Poverty Law Center
- Pam Kestner, Chief Deputy, Va. Department of Housing and Community Development
Moderator: Jonathan Knopf
Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Local Policy in Transition
Local policy plays a major role in the preservation and revitalization of manufactured home communities. Across the country, as well as right here in Virginia, local governments are utilizing innovative strategies to ensure that manufactured home communities remain a part of their affordable housing supply. This session provides you with an opportunity to learn about these strategies and the challenges and opportunities that come with them.
- Dan Cohen, Director of Community Enhancement, Chesterfield County, Virginia
- Ted Barclay, Special Projects Manager, Chesterfield County, Virginia
- Karen Prochilo, Housing Development Administrator, Virginia Beach, Virginia
- Crystal Launder, Housing Planner, Boulder, Colorado
- Cameron Herrington, Program Manager, Living Cully
Moderator: Vaughn Poller, Neighborhood Development Administrator, James City County
Financing Park Acquisition and Revitalization
While affordability is the essential benefit of manufactured home communities, the costs to acquire parks and to upgrade or replace homes can be substantial. This makes the availability of debt financing a critical element of these projects. But not all lenders are comfortable with this type of lending – a reality that complicates the revitalization of these properties. This session will feature presenters who are supportive lenders to the nonprofit community and who approach the issue from several perspectives, including strategies to enable resident ownership.
- Mary O’Hara, Director, ROC-USA Network
- Chris Thompson, Director of Strategic Housing, Virginia Housing
- Jen Hopkins, Director of Single Family Housing, NH Community Loan Fund
- Bill Van Vliet, Executive Director, Oregon Network for Affordable Housing (NOAH)
Moderator, Bill Greenleaf, Senior Vice President, Virginia Community Capital
On Home Turf: Resident Outreach and Organizing
In Virginia, there are no resident-owned manufactured home communities. But this has not prevented residents across Virginia from working together to have their voices heard. In this session, you will hear from individuals working directly within communities to educate and organize residents. From best practices in outreach and organizing, this session will provide a snapshot of initiatives here in Virginia and in other states.
- Phil Storey, Staff Attorney, Housing Advocacy, Virginia Poverty Law Center
- Vanessa Hatch, Community Services & Housing Compliance Manager, Augusta Communities
- Joe Ciszek, formerly of Virginia Poverty Law Center
- Mayra Torres, Housing Organizer, Living Cully
- Augustin Bravo, Mobile Towne Residents Association
Moderator: Eric Mai, MHCCV
Innovation in Design, Construction, and Delivery
In the last few years, we have seen an amazing amount of innovation happen in home design and construction – much of it driven by the goal of reducing cost. Indeed, some of the long held views of home size, construction materials, site plan and other design considerations are being fundamentally re-thought. The panelists in this session are all working on innovations that have already been brought to market or are in the pipeline. Find out what’s in store for homebuyers of the future.
- Marion Cake, Vice President, project:HOMES
- Pete Gombert, Executive Chairman, IndieDwell
- Andrew McCoy, Beliveau Professor, Virginia Tech
- John Weldy, Director of Engineering, Clayton Homes
Moderator: Chris Nicely, CEO, Next Step
The ABCs of Nonprofit Park Purchase and Operation
Manufactured home communities (aka mobile home parks) are increasingly being viewed as part of the spectrum of solutions to the affordable housing challenge. Parks are also an increasingly popular investment for real estate developers due to their strong cash flow and lower management costs. Nonprofit housing organizations are also becoming more engaged in the acquisition and revitalization of these communities. The panelists in this session are all experienced practitioners who will describe the opportunities and risks that these projects offer.
- Lee Housholder, CEO, project:HOMES
- Charlie Einsman, Board member, Catholics for Housing
- Suzanne Taylor, President and CEO, Augusta Communities
- Terry McDonald, Executive Director, Lane County St. Vincent de Paul
Moderator: Bob Adams, MHCCV
Closing Session: What Lies Ahead
The closing plenary session will be a conversation between experts who are working on this issue at both the national and state level. Policies are changing quickly and manufactured housing / mobile home parks are emerging from the shadow of years of misperceptions. The industry and the product are undergoing transformation. We’ll ask them what changes and opportunities are coming our way and how we can be prepared to take advantage of them.
- Esther Sullivan, Ph.D, University of Colorado Denver
- Doug Ryan, Senior Fellow, Prosperity Now
- Chris Nicely, CEO, Next Step
- Randy Grumbine, President, Virginia Manufactured Home Association
- Christ Thompson, Director of Strategic Housing, Virginia Housing
Moderator: Jonathan Knopf, MHCCV