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Posts tagged: Multi-Family housing

Already Planning to Feed More Kids than Ever During Summer 2017

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack serving breakfast to students at Robert E. Lee Elementary

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack serves breakfast to students at Robert E. Lee Elementary in Petersburg, VA on Jun. 7, 2016. Secretary Vilsack was at the school for the kick off of the U.S Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Summer Food Program.

Now that summer has come and gone, I’m happy to announce that this season the USDA Rural Housing Service was able to partner with the USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to feed more kids than ever before. Three hundred and five Rural Housing Service Multi-Family Housing properties participated in FNS’ Summer Meal Programs, which provide low-income children with free, healthy meals during the summer when school is out. This is 121 more affordable housing communities we were able to serve than the year before, and almost triple the number from 2014.

This is a huge success, and I’m so proud of my team across the country for feeding more kids at our properties than ever before! However, we cannot become complacent because we have the potential to make an even bigger difference in the lives of rural kids. There are more opportunities to partner with borrowers in our Multi-Family Housing and Community Facilities Programs, and I’ve set a lofty goal for summer 2017. Read more »

Providing Rural Housing Assistance for Louisiana Flood Survivors

Lafayette Area Technician Dianne Robert and her son, Elijah

Lafayette Area Technician Dianne Robert and her son, Elijah, help package food and supplies at their local shelter.

Last month, many parts of Southern Louisiana were faced with disastrous flooding that submerged thousands of homes and businesses and also resulted in 13 reported deaths. The flood has been called the worst U.S. natural disaster since Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

Seeing homes where families have spent their entire lives destroyed along with gutted furniture piled on neighborhood sidewalks is truly heartbreaking.  While distressing, I do believe that through the strength of the community, Louisiana will continue to rebuild and move forward.  I am most proud to see residents working together each day after such a tragedy.  Some of the USDA Rural Development (RD) Louisiana staff members have volunteered their time with the American Red Cross at local shelters or have helped clean out their neighbors’ damaged homes.  Despite the devastation, these RD staff volunteers have approached this work in a positive and kind-hearted manner. Read more »

USDA Rural Development State Director Tours Southwestern North Dakota to Connect with Community Leaders

USDA Rural Development State Director Jasper Schneider, and staff, recently toured seven rural communities in southwestern North Dakota as part of USDA’s ongoing commitment to rural communities.  Schneider participated in conversations with community leaders to identify ways Rural Development programs can most effectively work to improve the quality of life and increase economic opportunity in the region. Read more »

Indiana Housing Manager Receives USDA National Award

Written by Darrell J. Mowery, USDA Rural Development Public Information CoordinatorChristal Stidham has been chosen as the National 2010 Site Manager of the Year for Family Housing for the USDA Rural Development’s Multi-Family Housing program.  Ms. Stidham operates Village Apartments II in Scottsburg, Indiana.

Originally selected as the Indiana Site Manager of the Year for Family Housing, Stidham then competed for the national honor.  The award was formally presented to her Tuesday morning, June 15th, at the Ritz-Carlton-Pentagon City, Arlington, Virginia.

A Site Manager of the Year sets a standard of excellence; excellence in tenant satisfaction, maintaining curb appeal of the project, accurate and complete record keeping, and generally performing above and beyond normal expectations.  Christal Stidham has achieved this and much more.  Village Apartments II of Scottsburg is well maintained and managed.  The tenants are very satisfied and happy to have her as a manager.

Village Apartments II had a fire which took place in May 2009.  Christal went above and beyond the call of duty that day.  She took charge and only thought of the safety of her residents and their pets during the extreme situation.  Christal’s true character came out when faced with this emergency.

Phil Lehmkuhler, USDA Rural Development Indiana State Director said, “The site managers guarantee the success of our housing complexes.  They make sure the day-to-day operations go smoothly and they often invest a great deal of their own free time in providing tenants with a safe and cohesive community.  Although these managers would do their jobs whether or not they received recognition, we believe we should reward excellent performance.”

USDA Rural Development administers a national loan portfolio of over 16,000 rural rental housing complexes.  In partnership with private sector and nonprofit borrowers, RD houses very low- and low-income rural families, elderly people, and farm workers.  The site managers of the housing complexes are employees of private companies, not the U.S. Government. Also receiving awards yesterday were Nancy Fargo of New York and Tami Egeland of North Dakota.

Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting USDA’s web site at

Christal Stidham (left) and Tina Richardson, USDA Rural Development Area Technician for the Indiana North Vernon Area Office, celebrate Tuesday’s award presentation.
Christal Stidham (left) and Tina Richardson, USDA Rural Development Area Technician for
the Indiana North Vernon Area Office, celebrate Tuesday’s award presentation.

Virginia’s First Multi-Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Provided by USDA

A standing room only crowd welcomed Congressman Rick Boucher of the 9th District in Virginia and Ellen M. Davis, State Director for Rural Development at the January 12th funding event in Wytheville, Virginia. The ceremony highlighted the very first USDA Guaranteed Multi-Family Housing loan in the state. “The new High Meadows Town Homes fill a great need in our community-the need for high quality, affordable rental housing” said Congressman Boucher during his remarks.

The new town homes were financed by a $2.1 million dollar guaranteed multi-family housing loan made by Lancaster Pollard Mortgage Service.  Carl Wagner representing the mortgage service said, “We are delighted to assist in this first guaranteed venture in Virginia and that this is only the beginning of this type of relationship as Lancaster and Pollard will be looking to financing many more complexes in the future.”

The total cost of the project is over $9 million dollars and will provide 60 new modern, energy efficient one, two and three bedroom apartments to the Wytheville main street corridor. The Town Manage for Wytheville, Wayne Sutherland, was also on hand and remarked, “Our small town has grown over the years and the new town homes will be necessary for our continued prosperity as a growing rural community.”

Accepting the funding certificate was Mark Kinser, CEO of High Meadows Associates based in Radford, Virginia.

Submitted by Vern Orrell, Assistant to the State Director, USDA Rural Development, VA