Across the NeighborWorks America network, many housing organizations found that the year 2020 brought into sharp relief a number of technical and adaptive challenges facing their institutions. This project arose in response to this heightened sense of urgency and seeks to provide compass bearings for nonprofit boards looking to advance practices of race, equity, diversity, and inclusion (REDI) in their governance.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the regulator of the two government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, has also been the conservator of the two GSEs since September 2008. As the GSEs’ conservator, the FHFA has total authority over their operations – it has all the authority that would normally be held, for each GSE, by their shareholders and by their board of directors and also by their management.
Black American communities have faced many disparate negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, including higher rates of infection and pandemic-induced job loss. Given the history of community development organizations in responding to spatial and economic racial inequities, the role of these organizations in responding to the pandemic, and the greater attention given to anti-Black racism in the wake of the murder of George Floyd in May 2020, this paper seeks to document and examine how organizations within the NeighborWorks® America network are responding to the disparate racial impacts of the pandemic.