We are pleased to announce our upcoming panel discussion with local thought AND action leaders in areas of urban planning, public policy, affordable housing and community development.This first of several series to come will focus on current issues affecting communities of color in regards to homeownership and affordable housing. We will explore available resources and opportunities that empower people of color to preserve, build and maintain sustainable, prosperous communities.
Our panelists include Chrishelle Palay, Kathy Flanagan Peyton, and Antoine Bryant. This discussion will be moderated by Algenita Scott Davis.
Algenita Scott Davis
Algenita will retire from the Jesse H. Jones School of Business at Texas Southern University on August 31, 2020 after teaching for seven years as a Visiting Associate Professor. She is currently a housing program manager for the Center for Civic and Public Policy Improvement and the government and community affairs officer of Central Houston Inc. A native of Houston’s Fifth Ward, Algenita earned her undergraduate degree in accounting from Howard University School of Business Administration, then attended Howard’s Law School earning her Doctorate of Jurisprudence (JD). Her legal career spans over forty-six years during which she worked in private practice with the law firm of Burney Edwards Hall Hartsfield and Scott, served as a tax attorney for Shell Oil Company and as general counsel of the Port of Houston Authority. Her leadership in the legal profession includes past presidency of the National Bar Association and Houston Lawyers Association and board membership of the State Bar of Texas.
Moving from law to community engagement, Algenita joined Texas Commerce Bank in 1989 and served as senior vice president and community affairs officer, continuing in this role at TCB’s successor, J.P. Morgan Chase and Company. In 1996, she helped found The William A. Lawson Institute for Peace and Prosperity, was its first board president and became a visiting professor at TSU’s School of Public Affairs, School of Business and Thurgood Marshall School of Law. From 2006 to 2013, she was the executive director of Houston Habitat for Humanity, constructing 350 houses, building three complete subdivisions and coordinating many renovations for seniors.
Algenita is a former 27-year member of the City of Houston Planning Commission, appointed by six mayors, chair of the Houston Area Urban League, vice president of Harris County Hospital District Foundation and a board member of Houston Business Development, Inc. She served as chair of Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone (TIRZ) Number 9 for 20 years which TIRZ includes 460 affordable houses. She is vice chair of TIRZ Number 7 and was founding chair of the Houston Downtown Management Corporation (District).
Chrishelle Palay is the director of the Houston Organizing Movement for Equity (HOME) Coalition. HOME was created in response to Hurricane Harvey in an effort to ensure all Houstonians recovered from the disaster in an equitable manner. HOME is comprised of several organizations whose expertise ranges from policy advocacy, direct services, legal enforcement and grassroots organizing. Prior to leading this collective, Chrishelle focused on fair housing policy advocacy as the Southeast Co-Director at Texas Housers for over 7 years.
Through this work she provided housing and neighborhood development policy analysis and review to local community organizing groups who were addressing major disinvestment and neglect in their communities. Her expertise grew out of disaster recovery efforts after 2008’s Hurricane Ike disaster recovery process. This experience well positioned community leaders, organizers and advocates to demand equitable investment and treatment for low income communities in the Hurricane Harvey recovery process.Before transitioning into social justice work Chrishelle practiced architecture, specifically multifamily high rise development. Chrishelle is a Next City Vanguard alumni, and was a Ford Public Voices Fellow of the OpEd Project. She also participates in several national cohorts including Community of Practice on Local Housing Strategies, Ford Just Cities Narrative Shift Project and National Fair Housing Peer Network Group.
Chrishelle has a Bachelors of Architecture from Prairie View A&M University and proudly serves on the boards of directors of National Low Income Housing Coalition, Coalition for the Homeless of Houston/Harris County and Rhodes School For The Performing Arts.
NOMA, APA, Assoc. AIA
Antoine Bryant, NOMA, Assoc. AIA, APA, is a thought leader and community engagement expert with 20 years of experience in the design, development, engagement and empowerment of underserved communities across the US. Working in the public, non-profit, and private arenas, Antoine is well-versed in the demanding language of government regulations and standards, having successfully completed and received funding for HUD 202, 811, and 203K projects, utilized CDBG and HOME funds, as well as Low-Income Housing Tax Credit projects. He has leveraged his extensive community development experience to become an advocate for the underserved, leading public engagement efforts throughout the country for nearly 15 years.
As Executive Director of Row House Community Development Corporation (Row House CDC), he managed and directed the construction of the award-winning Row House Duplexes, the newest quality affordable housing in Houston’s Third Ward in over 15 years. Antoine led a number of engagement efforts over the years, including serving as a Public Engagement lead with Houston’s METRO, resulting in an 500% increase in critical community engagement activities during his tenure. Currently, Antoine serves as a Project Manager and Director of Business Development for the Houston office of Moody Nolan, a nationally recognized architecture firm headquartered in Columbus, Ohio. The nation’s largest design firm under African American leadership, Moody Nolan is excited for its innovative designs coming to Houston, with the first two major educational facilities directly within historic African American neighborhoods. In all of Antoine’s work, intentional efforts are made at empowering indigenous populations who have undergone various levels of disenfranchisement and ensuring that they have a deliberate voice in the improvement and growth of their community.
Nationally, Antoine serves on the Board of Directors for the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA) as the Director of Strategic Partnerships, where he establishes relationships with associated entities that serve and work with architects across the country, who are aligned with NOMA’s vision. Locally, Antoine plays a tremendous role in the growth of the City of Houston, as a member of the City of Houston Planning Commission; serving as Secretary on the Board of Directors of the OST/Almeda Redevelopment Authority (TIRZ #7); and as a Founding Member of the Board of Directors of the new Elevate Charter School in Houston’s Third Ward. In the summer of 2016, he was the public engagement lead for APA’s nationally recognized Community Planning Action Team’s (CPAT) first international study, in Belize City, Belize. Antoine served as the Team Lead for a Master Planning Sustainable Design Assessment Team (SDAT) with the AIA for Central Falls, RI in 2019, as well as the Public Engagement Lead for an SDAT with the AIA in Dubuque, Iowa in 2017. These are among many other master plans and community engagement initiatives for Columbus, OH; Washington, DC; throughout Houston, TX; and nearly a dozen other cities across the country. Antoine received his Bachelor of Science in Urban and Regional Studies from Cornell University, and Master of Architecture from the University of Texas.
A Houston native, Kathy Flanagan-Payton is currently President and CEO for the award winning Fifth Ward Community Redevelopment Corporation (FWCRC) where she oversees the implementation of the Comprehensive Community Revitalization of Houston’s Historic 5th Ward. Kathy incorporates the vision of a diverse 15-member board of directors, the needs of both pioneering and new residents, community stakeholders, and acts as a catalyst in fostering the collaborative efforts of an array of community service providers with a primary goal of improving the quality of life in a traditionally underserved community. All of which are achieved through the organization’s major lines of business -Real Estate Development which includes residential and commercial rehabilitation and new construction, property and asset management; Community and Economic Development offering tools and strategies that support comprehensive revitalization and stabilization of neighborhoods to and for residents and businesses alike. Home Ownership Promotion and Housing Preservation services that increase the opportunities for affordable housing, and lastly, Arts and Culture, a balanced strategy that uses place and art to sustain the culture, invite new opportunities and celebrate the rich heritage. As a graduate of UT Austin, Rice University’s Certification in Non- Profit Management and 2017 Executive Education Certificate from John F Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, Kathy has combined her education and years of experience to establish herself as a leader in the community development industry locally and abroad, lending her talents in both Western and Southern regions of Africa.
Kathy is an active member of Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in the heart of 5th Ward and oversees the audio visual ministry, and currently coordinates Wednesday Night Live Bible - a contemporary biblical based bible study coupled with practical application. On a more personal note, Kathy is the leading lady to her husband, Michael and their three daughters Kamecia (Jonathan), Karla and Jasmine. She is blessed to be a grandmother to Payton and Jordyn. Kathy also enjoys public speaking, cooking, traveling, & reading.