Shola Olatoye Is City Of Oakland’s New Director of Housing And Community Development

City of Oakland
(Last Updated On: January 10, 2020)

Shola Olatoye replaces the unfairly-treated Michelle Byrd as Director of Housing And Community Development

Ms. Olatoye is an experienced real estate and management executive with more than 20 years of experience launching and managing public-private partnerships. She served as Vice President of Business Development for Suffolk Construction, a national construction management firm. Prior to joining Suffolk, Shola served as Chief Executive Officer of the New York City Housing Authority, the largest public housing authority in the nation. As a Mayoral appointee, Shola launched NextGeneration NYCHA, the agency’s 10-year turnaround plan. She led her team to balance the $3.1 billion operating budget for three consecutive years, launched a major real estate development program, and founded a social impact nonprofit, the Fund for Public Housing.

She is a sought-after speaker on leadership and affordable housing, most recently as a panelist at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She is also a project consultant to the Yale Berkeley School of Divinity’s emerging leadership initiative, as well as a leadership coach to executive women.

Ms. Olatoye has received numerous awards including the 2018 NAACP Public Service Award, 2018 Roger Starr Citizens Housing and Planning Commission award, the 2017 Coalition for Queens public service award, the 2016 Boys and Girls Club of Harlem M.L. Wilson Award for Public Service, the 2016 New York Housing Conference public service award, the Institute for Public Architecture and the 2017 Wesleyan University Distinguished Alumni Award. In 2014, Crain’s named Ms. Olatoye to its “40 under 40” list of New York’s “most talented, driven, and dynamic” young professionals.

Ms. Olatoye grew up in Connecticut and graduated with a B.A. with honors in history and African American studies from Wesleyan University. She also earned a master’s degree in public administration from NYU’s Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, where she currently serves as a Visiting Scholar teaching in the Masters of Urban Planning program on management and leadership.


By Roger Robarts

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