Mt. Holyoke College
Katherine Craven, Chief Administration Officer, Babson College and Rappaport Institute Advisory Board Member
Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development
Brendan Goodwin, Director, Bureau of Rental Assistance and Former Rappaport Policy Fellow
Description of Fellowship
During her time with DHCD, Leila worked on three projects, each in a different division of the agency. Leila assisted staff from the Public Housing Bureau the ongoing inter-agency Learn to Earn project which seeks to smooth out the “cliff effect” that families experience when earned income increases, and they suddenly lose public benefits. Leila’s research and recommendations were incorporated into recommendations to make it easier for Massachusetts residents to navigate the patchwork of safety nets. Second, with the Bureau of Housing and Rental Assistance, she is creating the first-ever public- facing “community report” on DHCD’s Moving to Work programs. The agency can now share a compelling narrative of their work promoting economic self- sufficiency and affordable housing. The report will serve as a template for future annual updates. Lastly, with the Bureau of Housing Development and Construction, Leila drafted an RFP which will allow DHCD to conduct an assessment of public housing’s vulnerability to climate change.