Workshop Descriptions

SERIES A: 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Homelessness/Housing /Behavioral Health: NYC’s Response                      ASTOR BALLROOM, 7th Floor
Join New York City agency leaders as they discuss advances in the supportive housing sector and high-level strategies to address the homelessness crisis.

Deepa Avula, she/her, Executive Deputy Commissioner, Division of Mental Hygiene, NYC Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene
Adolfo Carrión, he/him, Commissioner, NYC Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development
James Hendon, he/him, Commissioner, NYC Dept. of Veterans’ Services
Molly Wasow Park, she/her, Commissioner, NYC Dept. of Social Services

Moderator: Blanca Ramirez, she/her, Vice President, Hudson Housing Capital LLC


Supporting Staff at Concern Housing Post Pandemic                                       SOHO COMPLEX, 7th Floor
As our community recovers from the pandemic and continues the fight for much-needed pay increases for staff, the question remains as to how we hold on to existing staff and attract new talent to our workforce. This panel highlights Concern Housing’s holistic approach to supporting staff: including benefits, agency recognition, internal crisis response to critical incidents and focusing on Diversity Equity Inclusion and Belonging initiatives.  Come hear about a selection of initiatives that can be replicated in your own agency and workplace. View Presentation PDF.

William Chidsey, he/him, Program Supervisor, Concern Housing
Matthew Mangiapan, he/him, Program Director, Concern Housing
Donna Parker, she/her, Program Director, Concern Housing
Robin Smith, she/her, Associate Executive Director of Long Island Operations, Concern Housing
Karen Taylor, she/her, Deputy Director of NYC Operations, Concern Housing

Moderator: Jim Mutton, he/him, Associate Executive Director of NYC Program Operations, Concern Housing


Headed Home: ESSHI at the Halfway Point                                                          EMPIRE COMPLEX, 7th Floor
Eight years ago, at this conference, one of the panelists announced the very first Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative Request for Proposals. The panel will look at the successes and changes in the program and give us their view of the what the future holds for this program.  Expect a robust audience Q and A!

Brett Hebner, VP Multifamily Finance, NYS Homes and Community Renewal
Amanda I. Speciale, she/her, Housing Contract Development Lead, NYS Department of Health
Moira W. Tashjian, she/her, Executive Deputy Commissioner, NYS Office of Mental Health
Maggie Taylor, she/her, Assistant Director, Bureau of Housing Services, NYS Office of Addiction Services and Supports
Rick Umholtz, he/him, Deputy Commissioner, NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance

Introducer: Rebecca Zangen, she/her, Director of Policy & Planning, Supportive Housing Network of New York


Sustainability Requirements and Resources for Supportive Housing        DUFFY/COLUMBIA, 7th Floor
You may have heard that new City and State regulations on carbon emissions are going into effect. Come learn about the new requirements, as well as the resources that are available to help you comply. Both new and existing buildings will be covered, with a focus on existing buildings and retrofits. View Presentation PDF.

Jennifer Leone, she/her, Chief Sustainability Officer, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development
Jerry Mascuch, he/him, Vice President of Real Estate, Samaritan Daytop Village
Samantha Pearce, she/her, VP of Sustainability, NYS Homes and Community Renewal
Anthony G. Piscopia, he/him, Senior Associate/Director of Housing Preservation, Magnusson Architecture and Planning PC

Moderator: Emily Chen, she/her, Managing Director, National Equity Fund

No Toolkit for Liberation: Tackling Performative DEIAB for Meaningful Change  MAJESTIC COMPLEX, 6th Floor
Years following the long overdue racial and economic reckonings, many organizations have gone back on their commitments to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging and/or have adopted temporary, superficial or insufficiently resourced practices to advance DEIAB.  During this session you'll hear from equity practitioners working in or with supportive housing on what it takes to build meaningful, inclusive and intersectional organizational change practices that advance DEIAB.

Alexandra Francis, she/her, Chief Program Officer, Lantern Community Services
Myra Henry, she/her, President & CEO, YWCA of Rochester and Monroe County
Nadjete Natchaba, she/her, Chief Program Officer, Services for the UnderServed
Kathy O’Sullivan, she/her, Executive Director of Mental Health Programs, Advancing Racial Justice & Health Equity, Division of Mental Hygiene, NYC Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene

Moderator: Matthew Canuteson, he/him, Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, NYS Office of Mental Health

Under One Roof: Imagining a World Without Homelessness                       SHUBERT COMPLEX, 6th Floor
National and International experts reflect on decades of experiences and share their visions for providing homes for everyone.

Rep. Ritchie Torres, he/him, Member of Congress (NY 15)
Rob Robinson, he/him, Senior Advisor, Partners for Dignity and Rights, Adjunct Professor of Urbanism, Parsons School of Design: The New School, Advisory Committee Member for the Institute for Global Homelessness 
Diane Yentel, she/her, President and CEO, National Low Income Housing Coalition

Moderator: Stephen Piasecki, he/him, Upstate Coordinator, Supportive Housing Network of New York

De-Escalating with a Lens Toward Trauma and Bias                         MARQUIS BALLROOM, 9th Floor
Concern for the safety of ourselves, our colleagues, our clients, and their peers is paramount to the work we do in supportive housing.  This session will examine the linkage between histories of trauma and escalation, and will explore some of the challenges trauma survivors face when expressing and managing their emotions.  We will explore several concepts and strategies that support de-escalation, and the ways in which our own expectations and actions can contribute to, or detract from, successfully managing escalating situations.  There will be an examination of our implicit biases and our understanding of our roles when managing these situations, with an aim to pass along key concepts that you can bring back to your work with your residents or the management of your programs. View Presentation PDF.

Patti Abelson, she/her, Assistant Vice President, Training and Quality Improvement, The Bridge
Luis Fagundes, he/him, Assistant Team Leader – ACT, The Bridge
Eric Severance, he/him, Assistant Vice President, Data Management, Program Evaluation, & Residential Intake, The Bridge


Creating Re-Entry Housing with ESSHI                                                                    CANTOR/JOLSON, 9th Floor
The State’s Empire State Supportive Housing Initiative (ESSHI) for the first time provided service and operating funding to develop supportive housing for individuals and families involved in the criminal legal system. Hear from four supportive housing providers that have done just that as to their experiences thus far and thoughts as to what other providers should keep in mind going forward. View Presentation PDF.

Christina Green, she/her, Director of Supportive Housing, Osborne Association
Annie Murphy, she/her, Deputy Executive Director, HousingPlus
JoAnne Page, she/her, CEO/President, Fortune Society
Alethea Taylor, she/her, Executive Director, Hour Children

Moderator: Patricia Hernandez, she/her/ella, Director, Metro Region (NY, NJ, & PA), CSH

SERIES B: 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM


Homelessness/Housing/Behavioral Health: NYS’s Response       ASTOR BALLROOM, 7th Floor
Our state faces serious mental health, substance use, and housing crises. Come hear state agency leaders speak to current strategies to address these crises and their perspective on what this moment requires.

Chinazo Cunningham, she/her, Commissioner, NYS Office of Addiction Services and Supports
Barbara Guinn, she/her, Executive Deputy Commissioner, NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance
Ann Marie T. Sullivan, she/her, Commissioner, NYS Office of Mental Health
RuthAnne Visnauskas, she/her, Commissioner/CEO, NYS Homes and Community Renewal

Moderator: Baaba K. Halm, she/her, Vice President & Market Leader, Enterprise Community Partners

Navigating High Risk: Establishing Individualized Services in Supportive Housing              SOHO COMPLEX, 7th Floor
Residential frontline staff play a unique role in supporting tenants. Sometimes, high risk situations occur and can lead to staff stress. In response, The Bridge created an innovative Clinical Risk Management (CRM) team. Come learn how The Bridge’s CRM team took a high-risk policy from paper to practice by defining and supporting tenants whose needs fall under suicide, violence, and/or medical risk. This session will also explore how the CRM team learned the needs of various levels of housing, implemented evidence-informed concepts and interventions, and created data informed approaches. View Presentation PDF.

Lexa Flye, she/her, Director of Clinical Risk Management, The Bridge
Surgein Fonollosa, she/her, Clinical Coordinator, The Bridge
Alisha Petteway, she/her, Residence Manager PBH Residence, The Bridge

Introducer: Helene Lauffer, she/her, Chief Operating Officer, Jewish Board

Transformation Happens in the Deep End: Going Beyond Surface Solutions to Advance Equity EMPIRE COMPLEX, 7th Floor
Back by popular demand, Regina Cannon, founder, President and CEO of ARC4Justice will lead an invigorating and interactive discussion on the deep work necessary to address root causes of poverty and homelessness. This session will challenge participants to go beyond the binary of either/or thinking to dismantle racist and oppressive practices, learn how to use DEIAB as a stepping stone to anti-racism practice and solve for the “root” in addition to institutional and systemic causes that uphold and perpetuate racialized and other inequities. 

Regina Cannon, she/her, Founder, President and CEO of ARC4Justice

Moderator: Pascale Leone, she/her, Executive Director, Supportive Housing Network of New York


Affirming LGBTQIA+ Communities                                           DUFFY/COLUMBIA, 7th Floor
Join Sage, Homeward NYC and Jericho Project to learn how they create LGBTQIA+ affirming communities across the age spectrum, from young adults to elders. Learn how these organizations use affirming language and eliminate barriers to safe, affordable housing, to create communities where LGBTQIA+ people can thrive. View Presentation PDF.

Jonathan Castro, he/him, Program Director, Walton House, Therapeutic Horticulturist, Jericho Project
Sarah Folkins, she/her, Clinical Case Manager, Homeward NYC
Justin Palmer, he/him, Jericho Project

Moderator: Sydney Kopp-Richardson, she/her, Director, National LGBTQ+ Elder Housing Initiative, SAGE


Simply Refer to us as PEOPLE: The Importance of Using Humanizing Language    MAJESTIC COMPLEX, 6th Floor
This workshop will focus on the importance of using humanizing language to refer to people with criminal legal system involvement.  The words we use to reference people should reflect their full identities and acknowledge their capacity to change and grow, not trap them in a moment in the past.  Dehumanizing labels stereotype and marginalize people, and contribute to problematic narratives that counter reform efforts and adequate resourcing for initiatives, such as supportive housing, that help people as they rebuild their lives. View Presentation PDF.

Lily Shapiro, she/her, Policy Counsel, The David Rothenberg Center for Public Policy at the Fortune Society
Andre Ward, he/him, Associate Vice President, The David Rothenberg Center for Public Policy at the Fortune Society

Welcoming Pets: Animals (and their Humans) in Supportive Housing      SHUBERT COMPLEX, 6th Floor
The human-animal bond is powerful. Whether the animal is a service animal, an emotional support animal (ESA), or a pet, for many tenants in supportive housing, the human-animal bond provides a source of safety, comfort, joy, and routine. This panel session will focus on the unique challenges and opportunities that come with managing supportive housing settings in which tenants reside with animals. The session will include a brief training from a credentialed dog trainer about practical tools and strategies for engaging with tenant animals to support the safety of tenants, staff, and other residents followed by a moderated panel that includes a tenant, property management staff, a veterinarian, a psychiatrist, and a dog trainer. Plenty of time will be reserved for Q&A. View Presentation PDF.

Jill Maddox, she/her, Medical Director, Breaking Ground (Janian Medical Care)
Nylajah Manns, she/her, Assistant Building Director, The Lee, Breaking Ground
Eddie Martin, he/him, Tenant, The Lee, Breaking Ground
Marina Nelson, she/her, Assistant Vice President, Property Management, Breaking Ground
Elizabeth "Kizz" Robinson, she/her, Certified Dog Trainer & Dog Behavior Consultant, 2B Dog Training & PumpkinPups Dog Training

Moderator: John Betts. he/him, Assistant Vice President, Program Development & Innovation, Breaking Ground

NYC Supportive Housing: What’s New?                                                 MARQUIS BALLROOM, 9th Floor
Developing and operating supportive housing in New York City is complex, with changing regulations, enhancements to coordinated entry, and overlapping and sometimes competing obligations. Join DOHMH, DSS, and HPD to learn more about the city’s supportive housing landscape. View Presentation PDF.

Jacqueline M. Dudley, she/her, Deputy Commissioner, NYC Human Resources Administration
Emily Lehman, she/her, Assistant Commissioner, Division of Special Need Housing, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development
Jamie Neckles, she/her, Assistant Commissioner, Bureau of Mental Health, Division of Mental Hygiene, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Craig Retchless, he/him, Deputy Commissioner, Office of Supportive/Affordable Housing and Services

Moderator: John Rojas, he/him, Chief Special Services Officer, DSS/NYC Human Resources Administration

Serving the Whole Family in Supportive Housing                                              CANTOR/JOLSON, 9th Floor
The Center for Urban Community Services (CUCS) has been a leader in providing supportive housing to vulnerable New Yorkers for over 30 years.  In the past 10 years, they have developed permanent supportive housing for homeless families with special needs after recognizing the complex needs of this population and the benefit that supportive housing services could provide.  CUCS has spent the past five years in an intensive process of researching and distilling best practices for serving families in supportive housing.  This panel will present an overview of what they believe are the essential components of a comprehensive model of family supportive housing.  They will present the unique practices that have been incorporated into their work along with lessons learned along the way. View Presentation PDF.

Gabby Gomez, she/her, Program Director, CUCS Kingsbridge Heights
Carolina Grynbal, she/her, Consultant, Carolina Grynbal Consulting
Lydia Patterson, she/her, Education and Activity Specialist, CUCS’s The Lenniger and Sydelle

Moderator: Stacy Matuza, she/her, Deputy Chief Program Officer, CUCS


SERIES C: 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM

What the New NYS Mental Health Plan Means for Supportive Housing  ASTOR BALLROOM, 7th Floor
The new NYS Mental Health Plan passed into law.  What’s in the plan, when will it begin and how will it help all New Yorkers, but especially people living in supportive housing and those in need of supportive housing?  Find out here.

Julie Duncan, she/her, Director, Bureau of Housing Development and Support, NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH)
Nicole K. Haggerty, she/her, Deputy Director, NYS OMH Adult Community Care Group, Division of Adult Services, NYS OMH
Amanda Saake, she/her, Chief Advocacy Officer, OMH Advocacy and Peer Support Services, NYS OMH
Christopher W. Smith, he/him, Associate Commissioner, NYS OMH Adult Community Care, NYS OMH

Moderator: Luke Sikinyi, he/him, Director of Public Policy and Public Engagement, NY Association of Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services


Readying Emerging Leaders in Supportive Housing                                          SOHO COMPLEX, 7th Floor
Black people have been disproportionately impacted by poverty and homelessness, and face the most systemic barriers to accessing economic and social opportunities. In New York, nearly 70% of the homeless population is Black, and 80% of workers providing care for the homeless or formerly homeless are women of color.  Yet, data shows that the leadership of organizations providing services does not often reflect the populations they serve. Hear how the Racial Equity in Supportive Housing group aims to change that. View Presentation PDF.

Nicole Clare, she/her, Chief Real Estate Development Officer, BRC
Patricia Gray, she/her, Doctoral Lecturer, Silberman School of Social Work, Hunter College
Chinetta Mitchell, she/her, Assistant Vice President of Supportive Housing, Lantern Community Services

Moderator: Mark Jennings, he/him, Executive Director, Project FIND


What to Do About SROs?                                                                                             EMPIRE COMPLEX, 7th Floor
As most people know, supportive housing got its start as gut-rehabbed SROs – often with shared bathrooms and kitchens. This panel explores various approaches providers are taking to addressing the challenges presented by this model. View Presentation PDF.

Mariel Cruceta, she/her, Assistant Vice President of Supportive Housing Services, Volunteers of America
Katie Devine, she/her, Principal, Rockabill Consulting, LLC
Paul Freitag, he/him, Executive Director, West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing
Michelle Hess, she/her, Chief Compliance Officer, Lantern Community Services

Moderator: Larry Wood, he/him, Director of Advocacy & Organizing, Goddard Riverside


Practical Harm Reduction                                                                                            DUFFY/COLUMBIA, 7th Floor
GMHC will introduce harm reduction, its benefits and how the organization implements it in their substance use programming. Then a panel will discuss how to embed and normalize harm reduction in supportive housing residences and its impact from the perspectives of an executive director, a peer specialist, and a tenant. View Presentation PDF.

Chet Balram, he/him, Managing Director, Mental Health and Substance Use, GMHC
Stephanie Forrester, she/her, Peer Housing Advocate, Person Centered Housing Options
Amy LaFountain, Executive Director, Joseph's House & Shelter 
Christopher McClary, he/him, Flower City Apartment Resident and Volunteer, Person Centered Housing Options
Keila M. Morales, she/her, Managing Director, Clinic Operations, GMHC

Moderator: Nicholas J. Coulter, he/him, Executive Vice President and Chief of Development and Community Engagement, Person Centered Housing Options


5 Questions to Ask Every Tenant Age 50 and Older                                          MAJESTIC COMPLEX, 6th Floor
This presentation will focus on gaps in supportive housing for older adults with SMI. Attendees will be provided with real-world examples and a list of highly reliable short measures to determine the needs of older adults living in supportive housing and connect them with services to age in place. View Presentation PDF.

Karen L. Fortuna, she/her, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Dartmouth Giesel School of Medicine
Rebecca Heller, she/her, Assistant Vice President of Critical Care Services, The Bridge
Wydalis Rosario, she/her, Assistant Director of Aging Services, The Bridge

Introducer/Moderator: Karen Choens, she/her, Program Manager Long Term Care Policy, NYS Office of Mental Health


Catch Your Breath: A Moment to Pause, Rest and Reset                                                SHUBERT COMPLEX, 6th Floor
Part of taking care of others is learning to take care of ourselves, and at Reciprocity Foundation we work to live that out (and share it with others), so in our time together we will take some space to pause, rest, ground and settle - body and mind. We will practice the necessary art of rest and restoration through guided relaxation and mindful practices, as well as engaging in discussion on how to practice self-care in our daily lives. Open to all abilities; modified to your comfort level. View Presentation PDF.

Teresa Mateus, she/her/ella, Executive Director, Reciprocity Foundation 

Introducer: Doreen Straka, she/her, Chief Operating Officer, Jericho Project


Preserving 1st Generation Supportive Housing                                                  CANTOR/JOLSON, 9th Floor
Over the past several decades, supportive housing has been developed with a wide range of programs and sources and our stock encompasses varied building types. This panel will cover what supportive housing owners should consider in their preservation efforts and what resources can be brought to bear in these transactions. 

Arlo Chase, he/him, Senior VP Real Estate, Services for the UnderServed
Kim Darga, Deputy Commissioner for Development, NYC Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development
Erin Durkin, she/her, Counsel, Hirschen Singer & Epstein LLP
Russell Hubley, Director of Preservation Initiatives, NYS Housing Finance Agency/NYS Homes and Community Renewal

Moderator: Andrea Wong-Miller, she/her, Vice President, Richman Housing Resources LLC