Ellen Feingold, Treasurer

Ellen Feingold’s entire career has been devoted to making possible the development of housing and communities accessible to all, especially low income and vulnerable people.  As President of Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly for almost 30 years, one of the largest non-profit developers and managers of supportive housing for low-income elderly in the country, she has been recognized locally, nationally and internationally as a pioneer in making senior housing a place where low income residents can live out their lives.

JCHE has been an innovator in working with existing public programs to bring sorely needed services to the very frail residents of its buildings, thus enabling them to remain in their homes and avoid more expensive and institutional settings.  She has brought this experience to national organizations and to Congress on many occasions to underscore and provide detail on the need for development of new legislative tools. 

In 2001 and 2002, she served as Co-Chair of the US Commission on Affordable Housing and Health Facility Needs for Seniors in the 21st Century.  She is also very active as a volunteer, and has been President of Citizens Housing and Planning Association in Massachusetts (CHAPA), and a founder and Treasurer of Hearth which develops and operates permanent housing for homeless elders and those on the verge of homelessness. 

She has also served on the Housing Committee of the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA), as Vice President and Public Policy Chair of the Association of Jewish Aging Services (AJAS), and as Public Policy Chair of the New England Elderly Housing Association. 

During the Carter Administration, she was Director of Civil Rights for the US Department of Transportation and became very familiar there with the problem of trying to meet citizens’ needs with services that crossed departmental boundaries. 

She was also the non-lawyer member of two American Bar Association commissions—one studying the enforcement of Bar discipline, and the second looking at the growth of non-lawyer activity in law-related situations. 

She has been the recipient of many awards, including CHAPA’s 25th Anniversary Achievement Award, the National Council on Aging’s Sidney Spector Award, the Massachusetts Gerontology Association’s Louis Lowy award, and the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporations’s 2010 Achievement Award. 

Finally, many years ago she served as lobbyist for Massachusetts’ Special Legislative Commission on Low Income Housing which in 1965 produced the groundbreaking 17-piece legislative package that put Massachusetts in the forefront of state efforts to produce low-income housing.  This package included the founding authorization for the Massachusetts Housing Finance Agency, the state’s relocation law, a state rental assistance program, a scattered site public housing program, and many programs that have since become the norm in progressive state action in housing at the beginning of a new century.