Laura Mascuch Leaves the Network to Join NYS Department of Health


Laura Mascuch Leaves the Network to Join NYS Department of Health image


After more than seven years at the helm of the Supportive Housing Network of New York, Laura Mascuch will be joining NYS Department of Health as Chief of Staff to Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett.

The Network’s Associate Executive Director Maclain Berhaupt will become Interim while the Network Board conducts a search for a new Executive Director.

In the more than seven years that Laura has led the Network, it has grown significantly in size and stature. Under Laura’s leadership, the Network team played a major role in expanding funding for supportive housing across New York State. The Network helped organize and lead the three-year Campaign 4 NY/NY Housing which won historic commitments to develop 35,000 units of supportive housing in 15 years. At the City, Laura co-led the Mayor’s task force to create recommendations for the NYC 15/15 program. At the State, the Network helped shape and refine the 20,000 unit/15 year commitment – the first long-term program to create supportive housing outside New York City. Most recently, this year’s NYS budget extended and expanded that commitment for the next five years by creating the first ever supportive housing preservation program. Laura was a leading voice in the primacy of nonprofit development of supportive housing throughout these initiatives.

In 2020, Laura and the Network team led a comprehensive response to COVID by coordinating assistance and support to membership staff and clients, troubleshooting emerging issues, helping to start up and manage the city’s hotel system, advocating with government officials for on-site testing and vaccine distribution and providing over 16.3 million articles of free PPE to member staff and supportive housing residents.

Over her tenure Laura worked to revive the original intent of the Network created over 30 years ago, promoting space for organizations to share their experiences and insight, meeting member needs as they arose and helping translate those needs into action. Her approach to the work enabled members and government partners to come together to address challenges collectively to reach the best outcome.

"Determined, creative, and undaunted only begin to describe Laura’s years at the helm of The Network," said Brenda Rosen, President and CEO of Breaking Ground, and Board Chair of The Network. "Despite a challenging political environment, she led us in the effort to secure historic commitments to create 35,000 new units of supportive housing across the City and State. At the same time, she and her team facilitated vital preservation efforts, championed new service models, fought for fair and equitable pay in the human services sector, and ensured that New York continues to be a hub of innovation for solutions to homelessness. The supportive housing community has been so fortunate to have her in our corner, and we are grateful for every moment she has given to this cause. It amazes me to reflect on all of the times, over these past years, that I personally relied on Laura’s wise and generous counsel to navigate an array of challenges we have faced at Breaking Ground. I am honored to be her colleague, and proud to call her a friend."

Board member and Homeward NYC CEO Jeanette Ruffins said: “For the past seven years, Laura's leadership at the Network has ensured the bright spotlight on the role of supportive housing as a critical intervention to end homelessness for our most vulnerable populations never dimmed. As a Board Member and member agency, I greatly appreciate the many ways Laura has incorporated and elevated the collective voice of supportive housing providers into City and State policy discussions. With Laura at the helm, the Network has been a tireless advocate for our issues, our staff, and the residents we serve. This support was undeniable during COVID, when the Network led the way, providing its members with regular policy updates, a space for peer discussion to operationalize safe practices, and concrete resources to help navigate the continually changing landscape. As Laura moves on to her next professional challenge, she leaves the Network with a committed and seasoned management team. We are thankful to have Maclain Berhaupt assume the mantle of Interim Executive Director. I am confident the work of the Network will move forward seamlessly."

Maclain Berhaupt has been with the organization for 12 years, serving as both Associate Executive Director and State Advocacy Director, where she has worked hand in glove with our state and city government partners, members and staff to advance the Network’s advocacy agenda. Maclain was an integral part of the campaign that won the state’s 15 year supportive housing commitment and helped problem-solve and evolve the initiative in the ensuing years.

We would like to extend our gratitude to Laura for her incredible support of the Network community and staff over the last 7 years. While we are sorry to see Laura leave we are excited by her taking on this role and wish her the best in this new position. Laura’s last day at the Network will be May 6th.

The Network Board of Directors has convened a committee to conduct the search for a new Executive Director. The job description can be found here.

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