Ryan Chao Named Vice President of Civic Sites and Community Change

Posted November 30, 2011
Newsrelease ryanchaonamed 2011

The Annie E. Casey Foun­da­tion today announced the appoint­ment of Ryan Chao, the cur­rent exec­u­tive direc­tor of Berke­ley, Calif.-based Satel­lite Hous­ing, as vice pres­i­dent of Civic Sites and Com­mu­ni­ty Change, a posi­tion that will over­see the Foundation’s com­mu­ni­ty change invest­ments includ­ing its most sig­nif­i­cant com­mu­ni­ty trans­for­ma­tion ini­tia­tives in Bal­ti­more and Atlanta.
We are delight­ed that Ryan Chao will lead our efforts to build sus­tain­able com­mu­ni­ties in some of the country’s most dis­in­vest­ed neigh­bor­hoods,” said Patrick McCarthy, pres­i­dent and CEO of the Casey Foun­da­tion. Ryan is an excep­tion­al leader with the skills and on-the-ground expe­ri­ence need­ed to help strug­gling com­mu­ni­ties become places where fam­i­lies can succeed.”

The Foun­da­tion has invest­ed in inno­v­a­tive work in the com­mu­ni­ty change field for two decades through ini­tia­tives such as Mak­ing Con­nec­tions and Rebuild­ing Com­mu­ni­ties that addressed con­cen­trat­ed pover­ty in sites across the coun­try. Cur­rent Foun­da­tion invest­ments in Atlanta and Bal­ti­more, called Civic Sites, rep­re­sent places where Casey imple­ments neigh­bor­hood-based strate­gies designed to increase the eco­nom­ic, edu­ca­tion­al and hous­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties for fam­i­lies. In the com­ing years, Casey will expand this approach to oth­er neigh­bor­hood devel­op­ment projects.

Chao, who will join the Casey Foun­da­tion on March 1, 2012, is rec­og­nized nation­al­ly as a com­mu­ni­ty devel­op­ment leader. He has received nation­al awards from Bank of Amer­i­ca, MetLife and Afford­able Hous­ing Finance Mag­a­zine and has par­tic­i­pat­ed in fel­low­ships from the Annie E. Casey Foun­da­tion and Har­vard’s Achiev­ing Excel­lence Pro­gram. He is rec­og­nized for cre­at­ing inno­v­a­tive part­ner­ships that con­nect com­mu­ni­ties with hous­ing for seniors, fam­i­lies and peo­ple with spe­cial needs.

I am hon­ored to be select­ed by the Annie E. Casey Foun­da­tion and for the oppor­tu­ni­ty to con­tribute to the Foundation’s impor­tant place-based work,” Chao said. I look for­ward to join­ing Jim Casey’s lega­cy of strength­en­ing frag­ile chil­dren and fam­i­lies, build­ing mod­els that engage the com­mu­ni­ty, and help­ing to deliv­er new oppor­tu­ni­ties for America’s most vul­ner­a­ble populations.”

Chao joined Satel­lite Hous­ing in 2001 and served as direc­tor of hous­ing devel­op­ment until he was appoint­ed exec­u­tive direc­tor in 2004. As direc­tor of hous­ing devel­op­ment, he led the revival of hous­ing devel­op­ment activ­i­ties, cre­at­ed and man­aged a pipeline of eight afford­able hous­ing projects total­ing more than 500 units, and cre­at­ed inno­v­a­tive part­ner­ship mod­els for hous­ing linked with com­pre­hen­sive ser­vices specif­i­cal­ly designed for peo­ple with devel­op­men­tal dis­abil­i­ties. He iden­ti­fied and secured fund­ing to sup­port all phas­es of each development.

As exec­u­tive direc­tor of Satel­lite Hous­ing, Chao leads a 135-per­son staff that pro­vides hous­ing ser­vices to 12 cities in five Cal­i­for­nia coun­ties. He devel­ops and man­ages afford­able hous­ing that serves very low-income seniors, fam­i­lies and peo­ple with spe­cial needs. He over­sees the oper­a­tions of more than 1,700 units in 28 prop­er­ties with 15 new projects in devel­op­ment through­out North­ern Cal­i­for­nia. He leads a senior man­age­ment team respon­si­ble for the organization’s new hous­ing devel­op­ment, prop­er­ty man­age­ment, res­i­dent ser­vices and finan­cial man­age­ment. In his role, Chao cre­ates and man­ages rela­tion­ships with a broad con­stituen­cy of fun­ders, com­mu­ni­ty lead­ers, elect­ed offi­cials and neigh­bor­hood partners. 

Chao has devel­oped ser­vice pro­grams and part­ner­ships that serve as mod­els for the field. Under his lead­er­ship, Satel­lite Hous­ing has insti­tut­ed or expand­ed numer­ous inno­v­a­tive pro­grams, includ­ing an in-house para­tran­sit ser­vice and land­mark pro­grams focused on civic engage­ment, pre­ven­tion of social iso­la­tion and cut­ting-edge tech­nol­o­gy to assist frail seniors and the deaf. He also serves as an indus­try leader in advo­cat­ing for pol­i­cy changes that reduce dis­par­i­ties for low-income peo­ple and communities.

Before join­ing Satel­lite Hous­ing, he over­saw grants man­age­ment at the Upper Man­hat­tan Empow­er­ment Zone, the nation’s largest empow­er­ment zone ini­tia­tive. He also has been a loan offi­cer for non­prof­it, hous­ing and health care finance at Atlantic Bank of New York.

Chao earned a Bach­e­lor of Arts in archi­tec­ture at Wash­ing­ton Uni­ver­si­ty in St. Louis, where he grad­u­at­ed cum laude in 1994. He earned a Mas­ter of Busi­ness Admin­is­tra­tion at the New York Uni­ver­si­ty Stern School of Busi­ness in 2001. He also par­tic­i­pat­ed in Har­vard’s Achiev­ing Excel­lence Program.

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