5/26/2022 @03:00 pm

[WEBINAR] Love Is Love, Home Is Home, Fair Is Fair: How the Fair Housing Act Protects People against Discrimination Based on Sex, Including Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

Date: Thursday, May 26, 2022; 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. EDT

Webinar Host
Victoria Kirby York, Deputy Executive Director, National Black Justice Coalition

Opening Remarks
Demetria McCain, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, HUD Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity

Speakers

  • Shivaughn Ferguson, Director of Fair Housing, HOME of Virginia
  • Karen Loewy, Senior Counsel, Lambda Legal
  • Ryan Weyandt, Chief Executive Officer, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance

This webinar is sponsored by the National Fair Housing Alliance under a Fair Housing Initiatives Program grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Join us for our next webinar.

Register Today

Speakers

Demetria McCain joins HUD’s team as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. Prior to serving in this capacity, she spent fifteen years, most recently as president, at the Inclusive Communities Project (ICP). ICP is a Dallas-based affordable fair housing organization. Prior to becoming president, she oversaw operations, communications and ICP’s Mobility Assistance Program, a housing mobility program that serves housing choice voucher holders who desire housing in low-poverty well-resourced neighborhoods throughout the seven-county Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Conceived by Demetria, ICP’s “Voices for Opportunity” initiative has provided advocacy training to voucher holders fighting for expanding housing options and Black and Latinx neighborhood groups seeking neighborhood equity.

Demetria is the recipient of the 2015 Texas Houser Award and has been a sought-after panelist and commenter on issues relating to affordable fair housing. She most recently appeared in Soledad O’Brien’s Disrupt and Dismantle series, was a participant of The Atlantic’s Breaking Ground forum and has written numerous fair housing opinion pieces about the need to expand housing options for low-income renters. She currently serves as an adjunct instructor at Coppin State University (Baltimore) where she teaches a Fair Housing and Homelessness course to upper-level undergraduate students.

Before joining ICP, Demetria worked as Equal Justice Works Fellow and staff attorney at the National Housing Law Project in Oakland, CA where she worked on preemption issues as they related to the USDA Section 515 rural housing program. As a staff attorney for the Neighborhood Legal Services Program of Washington, D.C., assigned to the southeast office, her portfolio primarily focused on landlord-tenant matters for low-income renters living in private and public housing.

Demetria has served on several local and national nonprofit boards. Beyond work and parenting her two young adult children, she engages in various local volunteer efforts through the Dallas Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and her church. Demetria received her J.D. from Howard University School of Law, her master’s degree from Brooklyn College, and her bachelor’s degree from New York University.

Victoria Kirby York is the Deputy Executive Director of the National Black Justice Coalition. In this capacity, she is responsible for managing the operational policies and efficiencies of the organization, strengthening the organization’s grassroots constituency engagement efforts, and leading the advocacy and action agenda.

Mrs. Kirby York most recently served as the Deputy Director for the Advocacy & Action Department at the National LGBTQ+ Task Force where she managed the policy, organizing, and faith team to queer (do differently) advocacy around faith, equity, and democracy. She has been organizing in a variety of capacities over 20 years for a number of progressive issues and candidates at the federal, state, and local level. She served as the Florida Director for Organizing for Action (OFA), the non-profit formed from the President’s electoral campaigns to support President Barack Obama’s legislative agenda. She has also worked in senior-level roles in gubernatorial and presidential campaigns in Florida, for US Congresswoman Kathy Castor, youth education nonprofits, and in the private sector.

Shivaughn Ferguson is Director of Fair Housing at Housing Opportunities Made Equal of Virginia (HOME of VA). Ms. Ferguson has worked in fair housing since 2012, and for about seven of those nine years, Ms. Ferguson worked at the National Fair Housing Alliance within the Fair Housing Enforcement and Investigations department. Ms. Ferguson has coordinated over 500 tests and trained over 250 testers. She has led the in-house disparate impact analysis for investigations within the rental, sales, and insurance markets. She was the principal test coordinator for a systemic lending investigation that resulted in a $4 million partnership agreement between Wells Fargo and HOME of Virginia and has opened over 140,000 apartments as a result of the investigations she led during her tenure at the National Fair Housing Alliance. Systemic investigations that Ms. Ferguson has coordinated have resulted in complaints filed in federal court, HUD, and state FHAPs. Ms. Ferguson has briefed senate staffers, the DOJ, the CFPB, state OAG offices, and state consumer protection agencies on her work. In addition to investigating discrimination under the Federal Fair Housing Act, she has developed investigations of discrimination based on gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, source of income, and age. Using her experience in systemic investigations, Ms. Ferguson co-led an investigation that resulted in a report detailing discrimination at Virginia auto dealerships.

Karen L. Loewy is Senior Counsel for Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV. Ms. Loewy handles groundbreaking litigation and supervises attorneys in all areas of Lambda Legal’s work, including fighting for recognition of same-sex relationships; battling anti-LGBT discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, and health care; and securing the rights of LGBT parents. As lead counsel in Wetzel v. Glen St. Andrew Living Community, a case on behalf of a lesbian senior alleging harassment and discrimination in her senior living community, Ms. Loewy obtained a groundbreaking decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, holding that a landlord may be held liable under the Fair Housing Act for failing to protect a tenant from known, discriminatory harassment at the hands of other tenants. Ms. Loewy also served as co-counsel in Smith v. Avanti, the first court decision in the country holding that the Fair Housing Act’s sex discrimination prohibition covers discrimination against LGBT people.

Ryan Weyandt is the Chief Executive Officer of the LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance since the organization’s public launch in October 2020. Mr. Weyandt spent the previous 10 years in the mortgage industry as a senior mortgage loan officer at US Bank after serving six years at Wells Fargo. Prior to his lending career, he held a variety of senior roles in operations and event management, and founded RAW Insight, an organizational development consulting firm. He served on the Minnesota Realtors® Diversity and Inclusion Committee, led the National Association of Gay & Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP) Foundation and is a past-president of that organization’s Minnesota chapter. He is a University of St. Thomas graduate who completed his master’s work in organizational leadership at St. Catherine University. Mr. Weyandt was named as a RISMedia Real Estate Newsmaker in 2021.