Housing Resources chief O’Neill to leave; some have praise, but not in Copake
HUDSON—Kevin O’Neill, the man in charge at Housing Resources of Columbia County, Inc., for the past 16 years, is moving on.
Mr. O’Neill confirmed this week that he is no longer executive director, but is sticking around for “a couple of months” to assist with the transition, as Deputy Executive Director Stephanie Lane takes on the top spot at Housing Resources, a private not-for-profit organization that has assisted residents with housing needs since 1984.
Mr. O’Neill told The Columbia Paper the reason for his exit is that Housing Resources will “not be doing a whole lot of real estate development in the next couple of years—and that’s what I do.”
Housing Resources Board of Directors President David Pearce confirmed Mr. O’Neill’s imminent departure by phone and said a press release on the subject was sent to the media last week. The Columbia Paper still had not received the release by press time yesterday, but did get a copy of a July 26 letter sent by Mr. Pearce to Michael Scutieri, the mayor of the Village of Millerton, where Housing Resources is currently in the process of developing an affordable housing project.
The Pearce letter informs the mayor that Mr. O’Neill has been replaced and talks about the drastic change in the housing industry over the past two years.
“In this difficult economic time, Housing Resources is redefining its goals as an agency while staying true to our mission… Affordable housing development will not be a major focus for the organization in the near future” though the agency “expects to continue to work toward the success of our current developments in Chatham and Millerton,” Mr. Pearce says in the letter.
The “change in leadership” decision was mutually agreed upon by the Housing Resources board and Mr. O’Neill, according to the letter, which calls the move “appropriate.”