WASHINGTON, D.C.- The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) has awarded its Edward W. Brooke Housing Leadership Award to U.S. Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA), the Cushing Niles Dolbeare Lifetime Service Award to the longstanding low income housing advocate Nancy Bernstine, and the 2016 Organizing Award to the Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development (CNHED) for its Housing for All Campaign. The awards were presented during NLIHC’s Housing Policy Forum and NLIHC's Annual Housing Leadership Awards Reception April 3-5.
The Edward W. Brooke Housing Leadership Award is named after the former Massachusetts Senator who championed low income housing in Congress and later served as the chair of NLIHC’s Board of Directors. On Tuesday April 5, NLIHC presented the 2016 Edward W. Brooke Housing Leadership Award to Representative Barbara Lee in recognition of her outstanding contributions as a forceful, progressive voice in Congress for social, economic, and housing justice on behalf of the most vulnerable in her district and nationwide, including for her early, consistent, and vocal leadership on the National Housing Trust Fund. In a recorded video message, Representative Lee described the current lack of affordable, available, and accessible housing a “national crisis” that must be addressed, and she saluted retiring NLIHC President and CEO Sheila Crowley’s as a leader for that cause. She also assured advocates that she would continue champion efforts to address the crisis in Congress.
On the same day, NLIHC presented the Cushing Niles Dolbeare Lifetime Service Award to the retired Executive Director of the National AIDS Housing Coalition (NAHC) Nancy Bernstine for her lifelong commitment and tireless leadership on addressing the housing needs of low income people, particularly those with HIV/AIDS. Ms. Bernstine said that few things in her professional life had been more rewarding than playing a part in the Coalition's work to expand housing resources for the most vulnerable. Named after NLIHC’s founder Cushing Niles Dolbeare (1926-2005), the Cushing Niles Dolbeare Lifetime Service Award is given to individuals who have demonstrated exceptional leadership in the fight against housing poverty. “I am so honored to receive this recognition from NLIHC, particularly one named after the great Cushing Dolbeare,” Ms. Bernstine said at the Leadership Reception.
CNHED, a Washington D.C. based organization, was presented with the 2016 Organizing Award for its Housing for All Campaign that has shown a spotlight the issue of housing affordability in the District of Columbia. The Organizing Award recognizes outstanding achievement in state or local organizing activity that furthers NLIHC’s mission. The campaign launched by CNHED has won over $365 million in affordable housing investment and helped achieve changes in how affordable housing is funded in the District.
“We are deeply honored and encouraged to be awarded NLIHC’s Housing Organizer award,” said Stephen Glaude, Executive Director of CNHED. “The NLIHC award given to CNHED demonstrates that resident activism and dedicated practitioners, along with engaged public officials, can truly generate significant change. This award also serves as a reminder that much work still needs to be done to achieve affordable housing for low-income residents,” he said.
Diane Yentel, the new president and CEO of NLIHC, said that the diligent efforts of committed leaders like Representative Lee, Ms. Bernstine and CNHED fuel the hope and energy of the movement to fight homelessness and housing poverty. “The tremendous work of this year’s NLIHC award recipients provides a guiding light for affordable housing and homelessness advocates around the country. They model for all of us the optimism, persistence, focus and commitment that are needed to achieve our goals to ensure that the poorest among us have decent and affordable homes. NLIHC is committed to advancing the impressive work done by these courageous leaders,” Ms. Yentel said.
Established in 1974 by Cushing N. Dolbeare, the National Low income Housing Coalition is dedicated solely to achieving socially just public policy that assures people with the lowest income in the United States have affordable and decent homes