Retsinas and Orth nominated to Housing Board of Commissioners

Raimondo Nominates Nicolas Retsinas and Kevin Orth to the Rhode Island Housing Board of Commissioners 

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Governor Gina M. Raimondo Tuesday announced her intent to nominate Nicolas Retsinas and Kevin Orth to the Rhode Island Housing Board of Commissioners. Raimondo will submit their names to the Rhode Island State Senate for confirmation. 

"Providing more opportunities for people to purchase their own home is an important part of creating stronger neighborhoods and ultimately a stronger economy," said Governor Raimondo. "The Rhode Island Housing Board of Commissioners plays a central role for many families pursuing their dream of homeownership. I am pleased that Nicolas and Kevin are joining their team to help create opportunities for so many hardworking Rhode Islanders."

"I thank Governor Raimondo for her confidence in me and nominating me to the Rhode Island Housing Board of Commissioners," said Nicolas Retsinas. "Rhode Island has a great opportunity and platform to address the many challenges of affordable housing. I look forward to collaborating with the other commissioners and management team to provide Rhode Islanders with a safe and affordable place to live."

"I am honored and energized by the opportunity to work with my fellow Rhode Island Housing commissioners and talented staff in helping to meet the housing needs of Rhode Islanders," said Kevin Orth. "As a developer and owner of affordable apartment properties, I understand firsthand the challenges that the housing development community faces and am very excited to help make Rhode Island Housing an even better partner in confronting these challenges."

Nicolas P. Retsinas is a Senior Lecturer in real estate at the Harvard Business School, the Director Emeritus of Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies and a Lecturer in Housing Studies at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. 

Prior to his time at Harvard, Retsinas served as Assistant Secretary for Housing-Federal Housing Commissioner at the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development and as Director of the Office of Thrift Supervision. Retsinas serves on the Board of Directors of Freddie Mac, and the Center for Responsible Lending. 

He chairs the Providence Housing Authority, the Community Development Trust, and is a past Chair of the Board of Directors of Habitat for Humanity International. In 2008, he was inducted into the Affordable Housing Hall of Fame and in 2009 was named by BUILDER magazine as one of the top 30 innovators in the home building industry in the past 30 years. Bloomberg Business Week has named him one of the 50 most powerful people in real estate, Inman News has named him as one of the 100 most influential real estate leaders and the National Housing Conference named him Person of the Year in 2011. 

He received his AB in economics from New York University and his master's degree in city planning from Harvard University. He also has an honorary Doctorate in Public Service from Rhode Island College.

Kevin Orth is co-Founder and Managing Member of Atlantic American Partners, LLC, an affordable housing development company based in Providence, RI. Orth also serves as the managing general partner of the ownership entities in the company's current owned-portfolio, which consists of approximately 1,300 apartment homes in eight properties with an estimated value of $75 million. 

Prior to forming Atlantic American, Orth was Vice President in charge of acquisitions for Pacific American Properties, Inc., of Sausalito, California. He is a certified National Affordable Housing Professional Executive. Orth graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland, College Park and received a Master of City Planning degree, with a concentration in affordable housing, from the University of California, Berkeley.

Rhode Island Housing strives to ensure that all people who live or work in Rhode Island can afford a healthy, attractive home that meets their needs. A good home provides the foundation upon which individuals and families thrive, children learn and grow, and communities prosper. To achieve the mission, Rhode Island Housing offers fair affordable and innovative lending programs; provides housing related education to consumers and others; promotes and finances sensible development that builds healthy, vibrant communities; provides housing grants and subsidies to Rhode Islanders with the greatest need; and teams up with partners to improve everything they do.

Nicolas Retsinas will be replacing the seat held by Andrew L. Cortés, who resigned in March. Kevin Orth will be replacing the seat held by James V. DeRentis whose term expired July 1, 2014.  

"I want to thank Andrew and Jim for their service to the state on the Rhode Island Housing Board of Commissioners, and I wish them the very best," said Raimondo. 

(release from Governor's Office)