Happy Anniversary to Us! Celebrating 55 Years of Fulfilling Our Mission
November 2, 2023
Amid the hard work we do every day, we must take time to celebrate our achievements. And that’s what we did on Friday, October 27, at a festive occasion where more than 500 of our supporters gathered to acknowledge the incredible progress Eden Housing has made over its eventful tenure.
We were honored by the fantastic turnout, with attendees coming from throughout the state, including representatives from every level of government who play a crucial role in helping Eden create homes for so many Californians who need them
Here’s a brief capsule of the remarks from some of our speakers:
- Gustavo Velasquez, Director of the California Department of Housing & Community Development, noted that over the history of our work together, the State has provided more than $340 million to support Eden projects that create homes that house low and very low-income residents, including the unhoused, throughout California. Homes that provide new opportunities and transform lives. The state’s goal is to build 1.2 new affordable homes to address the current housing and homeless crisis.
- State Treasurer Fiona Ma shared that the state also has a statelow-income housing tax credits which invests $500 million a year in addition to the Federal Tax Credit that her agencies also allocate. Her office is focused on distributing those credits and bonds as expediently and fairly as possible. She lauded Eden’s deep experience and reputation for high-quality housing that provides a dignified place for people to live.
- Senator Aisha Wahab echoed the importance of providing dignified housing at all income levels, including seniors, teachers and small business owners. She recently helped pass bill SB 555, designed lay the groundwork for long term solutions that would help meet the State’s need for 1.4 million affordable homes.
- Assemblymember Liz Ortega shared her personal story of growing up in a family that struggled to provide a safe home and commended Eden for being on track to build 16,000 homes, which translates into 16,000 families who have a place to call home, the important foundation for success in so many other areas. As she said, it’s always easy to vote “yes” to provide that safety net for our community.
In addition awards were presented to:
- The “Innovation Award” went to the City of East Palo Alto and accepted by Mayor Lisa Gauthier for the role they played in helping Eden Housing renovate its Light Tree Apartments project, which doubled the number of affordable homes that previously existed on this site.
- Darius Livingston accepted the “Inspiring Future Leaders” award on behalf of Project Destined, a program for helps train underserved students entrepreneurship and real estate. Darius Livingston, Acquisitions & Development Associate at Catalyst Housing Group, who was part of the first national pilot of the Project Destined Affordable Housing Bridge Program that cultivates young talent in the affordable housing sector, addressing a significant need not only in California but nationally. The Affordable Housing Bridge program was launched in partnership with Eden, the Housing Partnership Network, and Beacon Communities.
- The City of Livermore received the ”Tenacity Award,” accepted by current and former Mayors John Marchand and Bob Woerner, for their perseverance in advancing Eden’s Downtown Livermore project, despite multiple meritless lawsuits that were filed with the intent to delay the project.
Congressman Swalwell concluded the event by congratulating Eden for 55 years of impactful success in addressing affordable housing needs. Despite roadblocks and challenges, its resourcefulness, creativity and spirit of collaboration have gotten it done.
We’d like to thank all those who attended, as well as our sponsors US Bank and Wells Fargo, both long-time partners of Eden and other event sponsors and staunch supporters of affordable housing.