President and CEO
CNHED (Coalition for Nonprofit Housing and Economic Development)
Steve brings diverse leadership experiences in government, the private sector and nonprofits to his current role as CEO with CNHED. His past leadership positions include serving as the director of community affairs for the District of Columbia, overseeing 13 agencies for the mayor, and as director of constituent services for then-DC Council Chairman Vincent Gray.
Tell us about your leadership style and how this contributes to your organization’s success.
I believe that good leaders lead with bold vision, inclusion and risk taking, but I believe that great leaders follow those they lead. My style is to inspire in others that which I want to follow. My team is closer to the problems and solutions we need to embrace. My job is to create a safe space for those solutions to emerge from within them so that we may genuinely be responsive, incisive and impactful.
What advice would you offer for other nonprofit leaders?
Embrace the notion that leadership qualities are often the opposite as they appear. Powerlessness and vulnerability are great assets to have as a leader. With power, the more you give it away, the more you have it. With vulnerability, the more you display it, the more others rally to your aid and ultimately follow you.
What does this award mean for you and your organization?
This award would validate a community of leaders who were committed to revitalizing the District of Columbia before the economic boom of the last 15 years. CNHED members were committed to communities and populations difficult to stabilize and develop when things were tough in the District. They have been overlooked during this period of growth. This award would acknowledge their value historically and futuristically.