Welcome to My Backyard: Pace Law School and Westchester Residential Opportunities, Inc. Present a Symposium on Fair and Affordable Housing in the Lower Hudson Valley

WHITE PLAINS, NY, October 3, 2011–Two years after Westchester County settled a federal lawsuit with a promise to create 750 affordable housing units in 31 predominantly white communities, the debate continues over how best to implement the settlement within the prescribed 7-year period. While the County reports that it is meeting its timetable, some housing advocates are frustrated with what they consider to be inadequate progress. They further assert that Westchester’s exploding population and changing socio-economic demographics will require the creation of housing at varied price points to meet the needs of all of our local residents extending well beyond the 750 units specified under the Settlement.

In a symposium on October 21, Pace Law School and Westchester Residential Opportunities, Inc. will bring together many of the key players in the discussion over fair and affordable housing in the Lower Hudson Valley. The program, intended for attorneys, law students, policymakers, housing professionals, business leaders and the general public, will seek to foster a productive and positive discussion, focused on moving forward and improving housing opportunities for all residents in the region.

In the keynote address, HUD Assistant Secretary John D. Trasviña will take stock of the state of fair and affordable housing across the country, and evaluate the national impact of the Westchester County settlement.

Two panel discussions will comprise the remainder of the program. Director of Pace Law School’s John Jay Legal Services Professor Gretchen Flint, who is a WRO board member, will moderate both panels.

The first panel will look at the bigger picture, examining the benefits of diverse and inclusive communities and how to overcome existing legal and social obstacles to true integration.

Participating on this panel will be:

  • Dennis Parker, Esq., Director, Racial Justice Program, American Civil Liberties Union
  • Glenn Martin, The Fortune Society
  • J.T. (Ted) Childs, Ted Childs, LLC, a renowned workforce diversity expert
  • Leah Caro, Bronxville-Ley Real Estate and former President of the Westchester Putnam Association of Realtors ®

The second panel will focus specifically on the Settlement and its implications. The discussion will seek to correct myths and misperceptions about the settlement, suggest how best to achieve its goals, and evaluate its progress.

Here, panelists will be:

  • James E. Johnson, Esq., federal monitor overseeing Westchester’s compliance with the Settlement, and Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton
  • Judith Myers, Westchester County Legislator
  • John Nolon, Esq., Pace Law School Professor & Counsel to Pace Land Use Law Center
  • Barbara Gerrard, New Castle Town Supervisor
  • Kevin Plunkett, Deputy County Executive for Westchester County

Date: Friday, Oct. 21, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

Location: Judicial Institute, Pace Law School, 83 North Broadway, White Plains, NY

Cost: $20

To register and inquire about CLE credit, contact Linda Maccarrone at Pace Law School, (914) 422-4062


Lauren Rubenstein
Manager, Media Relations
Pace Law School
(914) 422-4389
cell (914) 329-8680

Andrea Klausner
Deputy Executive Director
Westchester Residential Opportunities, Inc.
914-428-4507 x337

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