The progressive housing cause lost one of our most ardent colleagues with the death of Bob Hohler on June 2. Bob was the Executive Director of the Melville Charitable Trust. He died while vacationing in England with his wife, Karen. Bob was 78 years old.
Under Bob’s leadership, the Melville Charitable Trust has been the most loyal and generous supporter of the National Housing Trust Fund campaign. Out of concern about homelessness in Connecticut, the leadership of the Melville Charitable Trust saw that the shortage of affordable housing was the problem and directing resources to end that shortage was the solution. Bob made that happen.
Bob understood that funders who seek social change have to take the long view and invest in bold policy solutions. He championed the support of policy advocacy by progressive funders.
Bob was honored in 2009 as the year’s Distinguished Grantmaker by The Council on Foundations for his work to support and foster solutions to both prevent and end homelessness nationwide. The Melville Charitable Trust received the Housing Leadership Award from the National Low Income Housing Coalition in 2004 for the Trust’s support of the National Housing Trust Fund campaign. The Trust also received the John W. Macy award from the National Alliance to End Homelessness.Bob was an active and tireless partner in federal policy efforts, and was always brimming with optimism and good humor. Long after others his age had retired, Bob spent every day determined to make a difference. His death is a serious loss to our community.