The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have little.
~ Franklin D. Roosevelt
Board of Directors
Jeffrey S. Burum, Chairman
In 1991, using his own resources, Mr. Burum co-founded National Community Renaissance (National CORE) in response to the need for affordable housing in San Bernardino County. Five years later, wanting to provide more than shelter to low-income families and seniors, he co-founded the Hope through Housing Foundation to offer programs and services that transform the lives of residents. Today, National CORE is one of the largest national nonprofit affordable housing developers in the country.
Burum is a long-time affordable housing advocate. Early in his career, he was one of 22 real estate professionals to be appointed by Congress to serve on the Millennial Housing Commission, whose mission was to make recommendations for Federal housing policy to legislators.
During his 30 years in the development field, Burum established three successful real estate companies in addition to National CORE and Hope through Housing: (1) Diversified Pacific Communities, a builder of custom quality single family home communities throughout Southern California; (2) Diversified Pacific Opportunity Fund, founded in 2008 in response to the market downturn and has raised more than $60 million in private capital to purchase and develop land and other real estate assets; and (3) Colonies Crossroads, a land investment group that has developed a 400+-acre master planned community featuring more than 1,000 residential homes and more than one million square feet of commercial space, of which Burum is a managing partner.
Burum is active in the community serving on many nonprofit and for-profit boards and previously served on the board of Pomona Valley Habitat for Humanity and AIG Sun America’s Asset Management Company.
Mr. Crebs currently serves as President of New Direction and is recognized as a leading expert in mortgage banking. He served as Chairman of the Board and President/CEO of Directors Mortgage Loan Corporation, a full service mortgage banker with permanent servicing of $15 billion dollars. Under his direction, the Company grew to become the largest independent mortgage company in the country with 127 branch locations and more than 3000 employees. Drawing from more than 25 years of experience in real estate finance, Crebs successfully negotiated the sale of Directors Mortgage to Norwest Bank. Later, Wells Fargo Bank acquired Norwest Bank.
As a former President of the California Mortgage Bankers Association, he frequently serves as a consultant in the mortgage banking industry. Crebs also served on the Board of Governors of the Mortgage Bankers Association of America in Washington, DC and the boards of WMC Mortgage, PSP Financial Services, and Pioneer Savings Spring Mountain Group. Crebs is a graduate of the School of Management from the University of California, Riverside and the School of Mortgage Banking from Northwestern University School in Michigan. He is a licensed real estate broker and a founder and board member of Golden State Business Bank.
A longtime and well-respected Southern California home builder, James (Jim) Previti is president and CEO of Frontier Communities and Frontier Enterprises. Jim was named in 2004 to the prestigious Builder 100 list compiled annually by Professional Builder Magazine, and he has been honored as the Builder of the Year by the Building Industry Association.
In 2009, Jim Previti created the John P. Previti Memorial Foundation to honor the memory of his brother, John, and to provide philanthropic support to worthy organizations.
Minnie Santillan is the Chief of Staff for Assemblymember Blanca Rubio. In her role, Minnie is responsible for promoting the Assemblymember’s legislative and political agenda. She has worked in campaign politics and political consulting in the State of California for more than twenty years. She started her own public relations and political consulting firm, Santillan Devlin, LLC in 2010, specializing in campaign management strategy, message development, and field operations.
Passionate about her community, Minnie has served as President of the Fresno Downtown Association and the Hispanic Commission, as a member of the Family Self-Sufficiency Corps, Inc., the Fresno Women’s Network, and has volunteered as a docent at the Metropolitan Museum and the Downtown Association. In 2004, the Fresno Bee recognized Minnie as one of Fresno County’s Top Ten Professional Women of the Year, making her one of the youngest females to receive this honor.
Karen Scott has served as the Executive Director of the Children and Families Commission — First 5 San Bernardino for 12 years, overseeing the design and development of strategies and the contracting and funding of agencies and providers in the amount of $25 million a year. Under her leadership, the organization promotes, supports, and enhances the health and early development of children, prenatal through age five, through coordinated and comprehensive systems of care that strengthen children, families and communities, ensuring children are safe, healthy and ready to enter and succeed in school.
Karen has dedicated her career to serving families and communities, identifying and establishing partnerships, fostering and nurturing multi-sector relationships, and coordinating convenings of collective impact stakeholders, to leverage scarce resources, to ensure the best possible outcomes for residents, especially young children.
Dr. Joe Thigpen
Dr. Thigpen has been consulting with business and industry since 1979 in the areas of executive assessment, executive coaching, and team development. Dr. Thigpen served two years in the Peace Corps in rural Brazil. He was assigned to the Joint Chiefs of Staff while in the US Army. He is a past President of the American Association of Suicidology, and he received the Edwin Shneidman Award for outstanding scientific contributions to the field of suicide and life-threatening behavior. Dr. Thigpen received his Master’s Degree in Business from George Washington University and his Ph. D. and undergraduate degrees from the University of Florida.
Larry Van Noy
For more than 40 years, Mr. Larry Van Noy has been an independent residential income property owner and operator, with properties in Oklahoma, Hawaii, and throughout Southern California. He has founded and managed real estate development, construction and property management companies, and has served as an officer of several California-based entities and as a director of both private and non-profit organizations. He has a wide-ranging background and broad experience in the acquisition, finance, management, and divestment of apartment properties.
Emeritus Board Members
Andrew B. Wright
Mr. Wright co-founded National Community Renaissance in 1992 and now serves as the organization’s Co-Chairman. Mr. Wright led a prestigious career in real estate development spanning more than 30 years. He served as a partner for Diversified Pacific Development Group and was President of the Inland Empire division of KB Homes. Throughout his real estate career, Mr. Wright built more than 5,000 entry level homes, was a three-time president of the Southern Arizona Home Builders Association and was named Builder of the Year in 1979.
G. Allan Kingston
Mr. Kingston, as President and CEO of Century Housing Corporation for 18 years directed the financing of more than 14,000 affordable/workforce households, in 250 housing developments, in Los Angeles and throughout Southern California. While originating more than $450 million in housing loans, he also led Century to initiate “More Than Shelter® Services, Inc.” to assist underserved communities and families with after-school tutoring, job training and placement, transitional housing for homeless veterans, childcare, health and wellness for seniors, and creation of two charter middle schools. Now retired, Mr. Kingston served three years as the Chairman of the National Housing Conference, the nation’s oldest advocacy organization for affordable housing. He is a member of several national and state non-profit boards, including the National Alliance to End Homelessness, the NHC, and the California Housing Consortium, and is a long-time member of the Urban Land Institute.
Sebastiano "Seb" Sterpa
Mr. Sterpa founded and operated Sterpa Realty Inc. from 1962 to 1985, and today serves as Chairman of The Sterpa Group, a real estate investment and management firm. In 1982, he was elected President of the California Real Estate Association and in 1987, Vice President of the National Association of Realtors. In 1983, Governor Deukmejian appointed him Chairman of the Board of Directors of the California Housing Finance Agency (CHFA). Mr. Sterpa served for 12 years as a director of the SunAmerica Asset Management Corp., AIG Mutual Funds and Countrywide Mutual Funds. In 1990, he received from President Cossiga of Italy the award of Commendatore of the Italian Republic.