Community Continues Fireside Chat
By Tricia Hall
Sojourner's Truth Reporter
The Community RE Investment Coalition of Englewood District
organized a virtual fireside chat on Friday, November 13,
2020 to discuss housing and neighborhood development
improvement ideas. This fireside chat was led by Kathleen
Greely and included panelists: David Mann, president and
CEO, and Shantae Brownlee, vice president, Community
Engagement and treasurer, of Lucas County Land Bank; Sister
Virginia Welsh of the Padua Center; Tiffanie McNair, the
City of Toledo Housing Commissioner; Michael Sachs the COO
of NeighborWorks Toledo Region and Kimberly Cutcher, LISC
Toledo Executive Director.
The virtual chat discussion started with the Lucas County
Land Bank and resources available to residents and potential
"We learn about properties from our data collection and the
community. There are options if it's a vacant lot, unknown
owner or tax delinquent property. The Land Bank could become
the property owner and improve the value for a new owner. We
can facilitate that type of transaction," said Mann.
"Demolition isn't the only priority of the Land Bank,
renovation is also an option. Every property has value, no
matter the area. If a neighborhood has priorities, we will
work with them in developing plans," explained Brownlee.
Firechat facilitator Greely raised financing and funding gap
concerns for residents in Englewood. "Our community has long
had a lack of wealth and may not have the available cash for
a $25,000 property. The coalition has talked about buying up
like five properties and repurposing. Can associations or
residents make those types of requests to partner with the
Land Bank, because affordable housing a greenspace is a
priority. Would investors be a better customer for the
landbank?" she asked.
"There is an opportunity for homeownership in Englewood. We
can promote homeownership. It takes partnerships with LISC,
City of Toledo, NeighborWorks and Land bank to bridge the
gap and provide layers of funds available to ownership,"
"A way to build opportunities could be creating a Community
Development Corporation. Englewood does have one, much like
other neighborhoods," said Mann.
Local community housing development partners were introduced
to the discussion and encouraged to share resources to the
"NeighborWorks has stepped in to manage units that were
offline in communities. Tenants are buying the homes," said
Sachs of NeighborWorks Toledo Region.
"LISC supports community partners, whether it is a
nonprofit, for-profit or coalition with community visions,
renovations or building affordable housing, and developing
small businesses in neighborhoods like Englewood. We
prioritize helping to implement community priorities," said Cutcher
To learn more about Community RE Invest Coalition, visit
To learn more about available properties and finance
requirements for listed properties, visit https://lucascountylandbank.org.