Working Together to End Veteran Homelessness, One Home at a Time
August 5, 2015, 1–2 p.m. EST
This housing roundtable covered affordable housing and housing rental options for Veterans exiting homelessness. Officials provided an overview of the Department of Housing and Urban Development-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program and discussed new opportunities for public housing authorities to help change the lives of Veterans exiting homeless or those who are at risk.
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- Keith Harris, Ph.D. (Moderator), national director, Clinical Operations, Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Homeless Programs
- Jennifer Ho, senior advisor for housing and services, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
- Jesse Vazzano, national director, Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH), VHA
- Baylee Crone, executive director, National Coalition for Homeless Veterans (NCHV)
VA News and Media Coverage
- HUD Awards $1.6 Billion For Local Homeless Programs | HUD News Release (March 8, 2016)
- HUD and VA Award $5.9 Million to 26 Tribes to Permanently House Native American Veterans Experiencing Homelessness | HUD News Release (Jan. 8, 2016)
Keith Harris, Ph.D. (Moderator) is the national director of Clinical Operations for the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Homeless Programs. Dr. Harris received his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Oregon. In his current role, Dr. Harris provides guidance and oversight to the clinical programs in the VHA Homeless Program continuum, which includes over 4,000 employees providing outreach, case management, vocational services, residential housing and permanent supportive housing to over 200,000 homeless Veterans each year. Dr. Harris also oversees performance measurement and evaluation of VA Homeless Program services, and is responsible for evaluating quality, effectiveness and efficiency across programs and sites. Dr. Harris previously served as the Director of Homeless Programs at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System where he oversaw the full continuum of homeless services. During his tenure these services were honored with the VA Secretary’s Award for Outstanding Achievement in Service to Homeless Veterans.
Jennifer Ho is the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) senior advisor for housing and services. She manages the Department’s relationship with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the intersection of housing and health—ending homelessness, de-institutionalization and the future of senior housing. From February 2010 to February 2013, Ms. Ho was at the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) where she shepherded the development of Opening Doors, the nation’s first-ever comprehensive federal plan to prevent and end homelessness. Before coming to DC, she spent 11 years managing a nonprofit focused on health care financing and outcomes associated with supportive housing. Prior to that, she worked for 10 years in Medicare and Medicaid managed care.
Jesse Vazzano is the national director of Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) for the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). HUD-VASH provides Housing Choice vouchers from HUD, and wrap-around supportive services from VA, to homeless Veterans and their families. It is the largest permanent supportive housing program in the country. Prior to working with HUD-VASH, Ms. Vazzano served as the Network Homeless Coordinator for the VA Capitol Health Care Network for several years and was responsible for the operational oversight of homeless services for the VA Medical Centers in Washington, D.C., Maryland and Martinsburg, W.V..
Baylee Crone is the executive director for the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans (NCHV). She provides leadership and management over NCHV’s Technical Assistance, Policy, and Communications activities and serves NCHV’s Board of Directors to execute NCHV’s mission and goals. NCHV is a trusted source of information, training and guidance for community organizations, philanthropic and corporate partners and government employees at the state, regional or federal level. Ms. Crone is a technical expert on Veteran homelessness and currently directs NCHV’s Technical Assistance Center. In addition to providing intensive program development consultations with homeless Veteran service providers, she regularly gives trainings across the country on several topics related to homeless Veterans. Utilizing strong relationships with partners throughout the country, Ms. Crone serves as a liaison between NCHV Member organizations and their partners in state and federal agencies.
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