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Urban Edge Housing Corp.

 1542 Columbus Avenue
 Roxbury, MA 02119
[P] (617) 989-9300
[F] (617) 427-8931
[email protected]
Michael Rousseau
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 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 22-2483475

LAST UPDATED: 10/31/2017
Organization DBA Urban Edge
Former Names --
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years No


Mission StatementMORE »

Urban Edge is dedicated to strengthening communities and families. Together, we build affordable housing and vibrant, prosperous neighborhoods.

Mission Statement

Urban Edge is dedicated to strengthening communities and families. Together, we build affordable housing and vibrant, prosperous neighborhoods.

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year Jan 01, 2017 to Dec 31, 2017
Projected Income $4,302,328.00
Projected Expense $4,086,118.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • Community Engagement
  • Family Economic Resiliency Initiative
  • Real Estate Development

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2014 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Mission Statement

Urban Edge is dedicated to strengthening communities and families. Together, we build affordable housing and vibrant, prosperous neighborhoods.

Background Statement

Located at the crossroads of the diverse neighborhoods of Jamaica Plain and Roxbury in Jackson Square, our goal is to foster diverse urban neighborhoods of choice populated by resilient families and sustained by dynamic webs of community relationships. To achieve this goal: we build quality affordable housing for low and moderate income households; we advise hardworking families on homeowner services, financial education, tax assistance, and student loan counseling; and we organize our neighbors to become leaders of community change.

In 1974, redlining, real estate speculation, and displacement of low and moderate income families were tearing at the fabric of Boston communities.  Determined resident opposition had succeeded in halting the extension of I-95 through the City, but the urban landscape sustained the scars of cleared land, with large tracts devoid of homes and businesses.  That’s when Boston community leaders came together and founded Urban Edge to rebuild and revitalize these damaged neighborhoods on the “urban edge.” 

Since that time, we have developed and preserved nearly 1,500 units of affordable housing and more than 80,000 sq. ft. of retail space.  More than 4,800 low and moderate income individuals have graduated from Urban Edge’s First Time Homebuyer Workshops and 1,650 have become first-time homeowners.  Our Foreclosure Prevention Counseling program has prevented foreclosure for more than 1,450 Boston-area families.  Our Student Loan Debt Counseling Program has provided services to more than 600 borrowers and created successful outcomes (e.g. consolidation, restructuring) for 450.

Impact Statement

In 2016, Urban Edge:

· Graduated 863 households from our First Time Homebuyer classes, with 167 becoming homeowners;

· Completed the rehabilitation of 90 affordable rental homes at Cleaves Court Dimock Bragdon;

· Prepared taxes for 628 families which returned $1.42 back to people’s pockets and into the local economy;

· Engaged 35 families in participating in our Pre-K Initiative to strengthen families by fostering the parent-child bond, increasing social connections, and preparing children for Pre-K and Kindergarten;

· Maintained a 99% occupancy rate across our 1,300-unit portfolio of affordable housing in partnership; and

· Finished the year with a 12% surplus, which we will reinvest into our ongoing operations in 2017 and beyond.

In 2017 and beyond, Urban Edge will continue with the above initiatives and move ahead on two major projects within the Jackson Square Redevelopment Initiative, redeveloping 11 acres of largely vacant land, turning it into a model of vibrant, mixed-use, environmentally sustainable, transit-oriented development. New projects this year include:

· Greeting new Urban Edge residents with a Welcome Visit—assessing their needs and providing wraparound resident service coordination;

· Canvassing the community in civic engagement and garnering voter commitments; and

· Hosting Credit Counseling Boot Camp sessions, where staff lead a class through the importance and fundamentals of credit including.

Needs Statement

1.       Volunteers:  Next tax season, Urban Edge needs more than 50 volunteers to help area residents with tax preparation.  On evenings and weekends during tax season, we assist low-income area residents using an easy-to-use online tax filing portal through the IRS’ Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.  Training and certification is completed at the volunteer’s leisure online prior to assisting taxpayers at our Roxbury office. 

2.       Funding for our yearly $1.5M Economic Resiliency Initiative, including Financial Fitness seminars, Foreclosure Prevention Workshops, First Time Homebuyer Classes, Student Loan Borrower Repayment Counseling, Tax Preparation Assistance, and Youth Leadership Academy.

3.       Partners from the Corporate, Higher Education, and Sports Industries for our $21.5 million capital project—the Jackson Square Indoor Recreation Center.  Scheduled to be built in 2018, and part of the larger Jackson Square Redevelopment Initiative, we will redevelop 11 acres of largely vacant land in one of Boston’s poorest neighborhoods; turning it into a model of vibrant, mixed-use, environmentally sustainable, and transit-oriented development.

CEO Statement

Boston in the early 1970s was a scene of epic battles, over school desegregation, the extension of Interstate 95 through the heart of the City, and wholesale disinvestment in the neighborhoods.  Children were crouching on the floors of their school buses while stones flew.  Land from Lower Roxbury to Forest Hills had been stripped bare of homes, businesses and community life.  Redlining, speculation, arson and blockbusting had undermined housing values and the tax base and had driven out long-term residents.  

Our story begins with residents taking action to improve everyone’s living conditions.  They clean up vacant lots and parks.  They plant gardens.  They engage children, teens and families in education, recreation and culture.  They reclaim and renovate abandoned houses and invest their hard-earned money in homes for their families.  They form organizations and create strategies to revive the business districts.  They organize tenant associations to preserve, renovate and protect affordable rental housing.  They convince banks and foundations to reinvest in inner-city neighborhoods.  They join boards and committees to insure that decisions and actions reflect the people’s choice. 

Urban Edge took on the tasks of re-creating communities that celebrate racial, ethnic and income diversity and of rebuilding safe, stable and prosperous neighborhoods.  This vision is based on equal access to decent affordable housing, goods and services, living wage jobs, high quality public education and political power. 

Then want happens?  Public Officials and people like you take notice, and join the action.  Progressive business leaders see a new direction and come on board.  New resources are found where before the well was dry. 

With the strength and sure-footedness gained from each victory, the community broadens its focus from housing to the hopes of its children and youth, then to education, health, and recreation, and then to art, culture and civic life.  The neighborhood abandoned until 40 years ago is the community we flock to today, with an abundance of hope and with the certainty that its future is ours to shape and safeguard. 

Forty years on, we salute the courage, unity, creativity and successes of the community leaders who dared to take on the challenges of 1974.  We are humbled by all the work done by the thousands of people who followed the examples of those leaders and over the last 40 years built the community we celebrate today.  They had heart, and we take heart from them for the challenges of the future.

We offer a deep bow of respect and thanks to you and everyone like you who have contributed to building our neighborhoods—and the thousands too numerous to name—for joining together to create this beloved community, past, present, and future.

Board Chair Statement


Geographic Area Served

In a specific U.S. city, cities, state(s) and/or region.
Greater Boston Region-Jamaica Plain Neighborhood
Greater Boston Region-Roxbury Neighborhood

The primary service area of Urban Edge is the Egleston-Jackson sections of Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, and surrounding neighborhoods.  Some of our financial and homeowner programs serve residents from 31 other cities and towns in Massachusetts.

Organization Categories

  1. Housing, Shelter - Housing Development, Construction & Management
  2. Community Improvement, Capacity Building - Community & Neighbourhood Development
  3. Community Improvement, Capacity Building - Urban & Community Economic Development

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)



Community Engagement

Our community building and organizing programs includes Resident Services, Resident Associations Support, the Income Enhancement program, Resident/Neighborhood Engagement activities and our Youth Jobs and Youth Leadership Academy.
Budget  $433,000.00
Category  Community Development, General/Other Neighborhood Revitalization
Population Served Minorities Adolescents Only (13-19 years)
Program Short-Term Success  --
Program Long-Term Success  --
Program Success Monitored By  Urban Edge maintains a detailed information database to track and measure activities and results.
Examples of Program Success  --

Family Economic Resiliency Initiative

Urban Edge has developed a suite of programs aimed at serving modest-income working families that currently access or are about to access affordable housing. These programs are designed to change economic behaviors so that families will make choices that lead to increased economic resiliency, i.e. they have the capacity to endure financial shocks without disruption to their ability to meet basic needs. 

Homeowner Services / Homebuyer Education includes Foreclosure Prevention Counseling and First-time Homebuyer classes. We also provide Financial Fitness classes, EarnBenefits screenings, and run a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Center.
Budget  $933,185.00
Category  Community Development, General/Other
Population Served Minorities Families
Program Short-Term Success 

Urban Edge is expanding its Financial Fitness classes, with the goal of having clients create and use a household budget, better understand the credit system and how credit affects their daily lives, achieve a credit score of 680 or better, and achieve positive net household income within 12 – 24 months.


Urban Edge’s Income Enhancement program utilizes EarnBenefits screening to qualify and secure benefits for families that increase household incomes an average of $1,600 per year of eligibility, including food stamps, fuel assistance, EITC and subsidized child care.

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Center provides free tax preparation and tax education services by trained volunteers—we expect 350 filers in 2012, its first year.  Earned Income Tax Credits and other tax credit filings can bring as much as $3,000 to area households. Combining this with knowledge and support we expect families to greatly improve their financial management skills and achieve economic stability.

Program Long-Term Success 
Since 2006, Urban Edge has successfully helped hundreds of homeowners threatened by foreclosure (throughout Boston and 60 other cities and towns across the Commonwealth) to keep their homes. Urban Edge counselors provide face-to-face counseling from intake through resolution (through loan modifications, forbearance, trial period plans, bringing mortgage payments current, and bankruptcy).
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  Insert

Real Estate Development

urban development, property acquisition, renovations and other development projects
Budget  $2,996,354.00
Category  Housing, General/Other
Population Served Minorities Poor,Economically Disadvantaged,Indigent Homeless
Program Short-Term Success 
Provide green renovations to 82 housing units in 10 buildings in Roxbury and Jamaica Plain.  Providing short- and long-term regular and green repairs to the 65-unit development, Walnut-Washington Apts.

In 2012 and 2013 we will move ahead with two projects within the Jackson Square Redevelopment (JSR) Initiative, redeveloping 11 acres of largely vacant land in one of Boston’s poorest neighborhoods, turning it into a model of vibrant, mixed-use, environmentally sustainable, transit-oriented development.  The new Jackson Commons will add 37 new housing units, retail and office space, and urgently needed community facilities, including a Neighborhood Learning Center – all within a short walking distance from the Jackson Square MBTA subway and bus station. A new 38,000 square-foot Indoor Recreation Center / Ice Rink will be constructed next door.

Program Long-Term Success 

The Urban Edge Real Estate Development program will result in an increase in affordable housing units for formerly homeless, low-income, and/or moderate-income individuals and families in Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, and surrounding neighborhoods. 

Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  2,761 individuals are currently being housed in our affordable housing developments

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments



CEO/Executive Director Mr. Frank Shea
CEO Term Start Nov 2015
CEO Email [email protected]
CEO Experience Frank joins us from Olneyville Housing Corporation in Rhode Island, where he served as Executive Director for the last 15 years. He led the organization from a struggling period, with two staff members and an annual budget of $100,000, to a staff of fourteen, with an annual operating budget of $1.6M, and more than $35M invested in the neighborhood. Frank has more than 20 years of experience with federal and state affordable housing and community development programs and extensive experience implementing strategic partnerships. While serving as Executive Director at Olneyville Housing Corporation, Frank simultaneously served as Interim Executive Director for one year with an organization in the midst of a significant financial and programmatic crisis.
Co-CEO --
Co-CEO Term Start --
Co-CEO Email --
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
Chrystal Kornegay Jan 2010 Jan 2015
Mr. Mossik Hacobian 1988 Dec 2009

Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
Maria Caceres Director of Administration --
Bob Credle Director of Community Programs --
Emily Loomis Director of Real Estate --
Katie Provencher Deputy Director --
Jeff Tellier Director of Finance --
Robert Torres Director of Community Engagement --


Award Awarding Organization Year
Robert H. Quinn Award for Community Service U Mass Boston 2011
Richard Smith Award Massachusetts Association of CDCs 2010
Mike Sviridoff Leadership Award Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) 2005
Community Service Award NeighborWorks America --


Affiliation Year
CDC - State certified Community Development Corporation --
Member of state association of nonprofits? Yes
Name of state association --

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
NeighborWorks America 2010



CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments


Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 27
Number of Part Time Staff 3
Number of Volunteers 25
Number of Contract Staff 0
Staff Retention Rate % 72%

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 6
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 1
Caucasian: 14
Hispanic/Latino: 9
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): 0
Gender Female: 23
Male: 7
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Yes
Organization has Strategic Plan? Yes
Years Strategic Plan Considers 5
Management Succession Plan Yes
Business Continuity of Operations Plan Yes
Organization Policies And Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes
State Registration --

Risk Management Provisions


Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? Yes
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually


Board Chair Ms. Natacha Dunker
Board Chair Company Affiliation Comm. of MA Retirement
Board Chair Term Oct 2015 - Apr 2018
Board Co-Chair --
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation --
Board Co-Chair Term -

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Ms. Darlene Atkins Newton Public Schools; Resident in Urban Edge portfolio of homes Voting
Ms. Wanda Atkins VA Boston Healthcare System Voting
Ms. Viki Bok Victoria Bok & Associates Voting
Dr. Jeanette Callahan Cambridge Health Alliance Voting
Ms. Jacqueline M. Cummings-Furtado Quincy Geneva Housing Corporation Voting
Ms. Genie Curry Retired; Resident in the Urban Edge portfolio of homes Voting
Ms. Natacha Dunker Commonwealth of Massachusetts Voting
Mr. Bruce Erlich Massachusetts Housing Investment Corp Voting
Mr. Benjamin Forman MassINC Voting
Ms. Alison Haight Harvard Kennedy School of Government Voting
Ms. Beryl Harris Community volunteer; Resident in Urban Edge portfolio of homes Voting
Mr. Eddie Jenkins Attorney Eddie Jenkins & Associates, PC Voting
Ms. Deeqo Jibril Somali Community & Cultural Association Voting
Ms. Anne McKinnon Jacobs Engineering Group Voting
Mr. Donovan Montrose Community volunteer; Resident in Urban Edge portfolio of homes Voting
Mr. Darryl Pelton Wells Fargo Bank Voting
Mr. Arealus Pough Lena Park CDC Voting
Ms. Elizabeth Relerford Community volunteer; Resident in Urban Edge portfolio of homes Voting
Ms. Teresa Rodriguez Boston Plan for Excellence Voting
Ms. Jacquinn Sinclair The Community Builders Voting
Ms. Johanna Smith The Community Builders, Inc. Voting
Mr. Andrew Sobers GMH Associates Voting
Ms. Diane Stafford Boston Public Schools; Resident in Urban Edge portfolio of homes Voting
Mr. Sebastian Zapata The Alliance for Business Leadership Voting
Mr. Nathan Zielonka Zielonka Financial Services, LLC Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
-- -- --

Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 15
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 7
Hispanic/Latino: 3
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 16
Male: 9
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 2
Board Meeting Attendance % 75%
Written Board Selection Criteria Yes
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Yes
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 100%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes

Standing Committees

  • Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
  • Executive
  • Finance
  • Real Estate

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments



Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2015 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2014 (%)

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
Total Revenue $19,814,601 $19,814,601 $5,014,035
Total Expenses $7,083,520 $7,083,520 $4,249,601

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
-- -- --
Government Contributions $432,307 $432,307 $424,990
    Federal -- -- --
    State -- -- --
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified $432,307 $432,307 $424,990
Individual Contributions $11,337,922 $11,337,922 $1,512,259
Indirect Public Support $162,491 $162,491 $176,920
Earned Revenue $5,864,793 $5,864,793 $2,433,202
Investment Income, Net of Losses $11,881 $11,881 $3,379
Membership Dues -- -- --
Special Events $85,205 $85,205 $100,045
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other $1,920,002 $1,920,002 $363,240

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
Program Expense $5,658,893 $5,658,893 $3,001,838
Administration Expense $1,154,015 $1,154,015 $944,952
Fundraising Expense $270,612 $270,612 $302,811
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 2.80 2.80 1.18
Program Expense/Total Expenses 80% 80% 71%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 2% 2% 14%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
Total Assets $29,069,507 $29,069,507 $25,721,303
Current Assets $6,197,959 $6,197,959 $3,663,767
Long-Term Liabilities $16,613,508 $16,613,508 $17,603,285
Current Liabilities $1,434,514 $1,434,514 $1,198,513
Total Net Assets $11,021,485 $11,021,485 $6,919,505

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value --
Spending Policy Income Only
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line Yes
Reserve Fund Yes
How many months does reserve cover? 16.00

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? Yes
Capital Campaign Purpose Jackson Square Recreation Center
Campaign Goal $21,500,000.00
Capital Campaign Dates July 2015 - June 2018
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount $18,200,000.00
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? Yes

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 4.32 4.32 3.06

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2015 2015 2014
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 57% 57% 68%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments


Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in the charts and graphs above is per the organization's IRS Form 990s.  Contributions from foundations and corporations are listed under individuals as the breakout was not available.


Other Documents

No Other Documents currently available.


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