On Wednesday, September 21, 2016, ANDP welcomed 150 partners and friends of the organization to celebrate the milestone of its 25th Anniversary.
The morning began with a photo montage reflecting on ANDP’s 25 year history and an invocation from Bill Bolling, former president of the Atlanta Community Food Bank.
ANDP President & CEO John O’Callaghan welcomed attendees and acknowledged partners critical to ANDP’s founding as well as current and former staff and board members.
Colette Pozzo shared warm opening remarks on behalf of NeighborWorks America, a national network of 240+ affordable housing and community economic development organizations. ANDP became a Chartered Member of the NeighborWorks network in 2013.
“I have enjoyed every opportunity to partner with the great ANDP staff and board, who work tirelessly to deliver much needed services in the Atlanta community. NeighborWorks was pleased to welcome ANDP to the network in 2013. Our partnership to combat the foreclosure crisis and lingering negative equity through our Catalytic Program has been significant. You may not know that ANDP worked very diligently to educate community leaders on mortgage modification programs, code enforcement, public safety and neighborhood marketing,” said Pozzo.
Pozzo also announced that ANDP is one of 140 NeighborWorks affiliates to be featured the book “NeighborWorks Works: Practical Solutions from America’s Community Development Network,” to be launched in December 2016.
Ken Woods, ANDP board chairman, then welcomed attendees with a special video presentation, with archival footage of Mayor Maynard Jackson’s announcement of the formation of ANDP.
The morning’s celebration program continued with remarks from ANDP’s founding president and CEO, Hattie B. Dorsey.
“The work of ANDP is not going to be over soon. It remains essential to the fabric of Atlanta to ensure all citizens have the opportunity to live, work and play with access to the parks, beltline, schools and other amenities that make a city proud. It is necessary that we have policies in place that will not displace people who currently live in gentrifying neighborhoods. I congratulate you, John, for your work and your steadfastness, and I support the work of from my heart” said Dorsey
Hattie Dorsey joined John O’Callaghan to present the second Hattie B. Dorsey Award for Excellence in Community Development.
“The award is given to someone who has had a lifetime in the field of community development. We’re honoring someone today who has been involved since ANDP was formed. Young Hughley is a renaissance man. He cares as much about the arts as he does housing affordability. In Reynoldstown, he created a neighborhood poor and rich, black and white, straight and gay where people came together as a whole. No matter who you talk to, you will hear nothing but respect and admiration,” shared O’Callaghan.
“When I think about what motivated me. I had to go back to my Mom and Dad. Their first home was in Reynoldstown. They believed in family. They believed it was our responsibility to take care of each other. I look at community as family. I wanted the community of Reynoldstown to do well. I wanted the families to do well. We still have problems out there. We have lost 10,000 units of affordable apartments, while we build luxury rentals. The family members we care about are having difficulty affording housing. It is an honor to receive this award, but it reminds me the amount of work that still remains to convince people of resources that all people want the same – a safe place to live with decent shelter and amenities where their families can thrive,” Hughley said in his award acceptance.
O’Callaghan then announced two new awards. The J. Ronald Terwilliger Award for Excellence in Community Development Board Service and the Maynard H. Jackson Award for Excellence in Community Development Public Policy.
Terwilliger, a former ANDP board member and chair, has shared previously that he learned about mixed-income, inclusive, affordable housing through Hattie Dorsey and ANDP. Terwilliger, has been national board chair of Habitat for Humanity International, national board chair of Enterprise Community Partners, national board chair of the Urban Land Institute, and was instrumental in forming the Terwilliger Center for Housing at ULI and most recently the J. Rondald Terwilliger Foundation for Housing America’s Families.
“We are thrilled to present our first Terwilliger Award to long-term ANDP board treasurer and past board chair, Thomas J. Roeck. Tom is being honored for his service to ANDP but also worth noting that he also served with AID Atlanta, United Way, and continues to support ANDP. The stewardship he has provided is central to our ability to make a difference. In the tradition of Ron Terwilliger, we present this award to you for your excellence and dedication,” said O’Callaghan.
“I’m deeply honored by this award and I am privileged to have been associated with ANDP over all these years. I remember being told that we have to go into struggling neighborhoods and show that we can develop affordable housing and show the way for the private investment community – to show how things can be done. It’s interesting how things go back and forth and back and forth. In the early 2000’s we had the housing boom. We had the exact opposite problem on our hands – which led to gentrification and the sweeping out of folks who grew up in these communities their entire lives. This gave rise to the mixed income communities initiative. And then it went full circle again, with the capital going the opposite direction in the financial panic of 2008. Again, ANDP rose to the challenge – organizing the community, addressing challenges – and continuing to do so today with underwater neighborhoods,” said Roeck.
Presenting the final award of the morning, Maynard H. Jackson Award for Excellence in Community Development Public Policy, O’Callaghan recalled his days of working with Mayor Jackson.
“This award tugs at my heart strings. Maynard Jackson meant a lot to a lot of people. I counted on him as a teacher first. I’m one of thousands of students who probably would say that they learned more working with him than all of their academic and career work together. I’m honored to present this award along with Valerie Richardson Jackson,”
O’Callaghan noted that for Mayor Jackson public policy was essential for affordable housing. “Our current public policy is that resources from the federal government go to upper income folks for our mortgage interest deduction, and it’s a great thing to have, but public policy has to be changed. If we can’t change it at the federal level, we’re going to have to follow the leadership of what Shirley Franklin did during her administration with tax allocation districts and funding for the Beltline and the Housing Opportunity Fund. So to have an award for public policy is so fitting. I look at Shirley Franklin’s legacy -she found a way in the Georgia Code to create a Housing Bond. She is an extraordinary public servant,
O’Callaghan called on Valerie Richardson Jackson to present the award to Mayor Franklin. “I know Maynard is up their grinning. Congratulations on your twenty-fifth anniversary. Housing truly was an issue close to Maynard’s heart. I’m proud that you’ve carried the ball so far. And I’m very pleased and delighted that the honor of the first Maynard Jackson award will be going to Shirley. Shirley has certainly honed Maynard’s principles of critical thinking and servant leadership,” said Jackson.
“I’m not in the business of accepting awards anymore. When John called, I was thinking, ‘I’ve been out of office for seven years.’ But it’s really hard not to honor the work and impact of ANDP. An award named for Maynard is just heaven. I too, was mentored by Maynard. It is in the great tradition of Atlanta that those of us who care about the city, continue to give back.”
Mayor Franklin then shared a story of Mayor Jackson’s public service challenge to her.
“Maynard took me to lunch in 1998 and said, ‘Andy and I decided you need to run for Mayor,’ that’s not the punch line. He also said ‘If you are not gonna run, you need to get out of the way.’ That’s the kind of mentorship he gave. He didn’t just give you a problem, he gave you a couple of paths to solution. And that is what he did with his support for ANDP, said Mayor Franklin.
Franklin acknowledged that a number of housing related issues credited to her came from the grass roots community who continued to talk and about and research solutions to the issues.
“Maynard would not have us celebrate his legacy with out thinking about some of the things we could do now. We believe, that there is nothing in the state or city law that says the city could not set aside funding from their own general fund sources to do mixed income housing, housing incentives, holistic community redevelopment. The only thing that separates us from those resources is the will to do it.”
O’Callaghan closed the celebration with a look forward to ANDP’s work and community development challenges in the metro Atlanta region.
“We spent time celebrating, but the work continues. Going forward, there are two fronts. Metro Atlanta is the most underwater area in the country, there is no economic investment. Homeowners who had wealth have lost their wealth – which is 92 percent of the wealth for African American homeowners. The City of Atlanta and Decatur and a few other areas gentrification is at warp speed. We need to work on the issues of poverty and gentrification. We pledge at ANDP to be part of that fight. We will support your efforts. And I know you will support ours. Thank you for being our partner. And thank you to today’s honorees.”
ANDP would like to thank the following for their generous sponsorship of the 25th Anniversary Breakfast Celebration: Bank of America, The Home Depot Foundation, NeighborWorks America, Northern Trust, Publix Super Market Charities, and Wells Fargo. Additional event sponsorship provided by: Arnall Golden Gregory, JPMorgan Chase, Georgia-Pacific, Iberia Bank and Regions Bank.