Kerron Barnes Receives 2015 John D. Lange International Award
Washington, D.C. (October 16, 2015) - Kerron Barnes of Walden, N.Y. was named the 2015 recipient of the John D. Lange International Award from the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials' (NAHRO) on October 16 at the NAHRO National Conference in Los Angeles, Calif.
"Kerron’s international work has given NAHRO the tools to improve housing and community development initiatives in the U.S.," said Saul Ramirez, Jr., NAHRO Chief Executive Officer. “He is an advocate who gathers information from other countries and brings it back to our membership so that we can more effectively serve those who need safe, decent and affordable housing.”
Barnes joined the NAHRO International Research and Global Exchange (IRGE) Committee in 1980. Its mission is the international exchange of housing and community development information and professionals. In his role as a volunteer member, he developed the idea for and wrote the first two Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) between NAHRO and other organizations. The first was with the International Urban Development Association of Paris; the second, with the State of Israel Ministry of Construction and Housing.
In the 1990s Barnes initiated and worked on the process of garnering NAHRO recognition as a non-government organization (NGO) in consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council. This gives NAHRO a seat at the table with numerous NGOs in international conferences and deliberations, including the worldwide Habitat III Conference to be held in Ecuador in 2016.
Barnes has also written four feature-length articles on international housing and community development in the NAHRO Journal of Housing and Community Development, beginning with a piece on Ireland in 1981. He has also inspired other NAHRO members to write a total of 13 articles on international housing subjects.
Early this year, Barnes initiated contact with the Australasian Housing Institute, a member-based organization that covers housing issues and programs in Australia and New Zealand. In March 2015, he wrote a feature article in the AHI flagship publication, Housing WORKS. This contact resulted in the signing of a MOU between the two organizations in July, which is NAHRO's latest international connection.
The award was established in 1983 in the name of John D. Lange, Executive Director of NAHRO from 1951 to 1970, who actively participated throughout his professional career in international exchange and, in his retirement, carried out executive service assignments in Argentina, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
NAHRO, established in 1933, is a membership organization of 20,000 housing and community development agencies and professionals throughout the United States whose mission is to create affordable housing and safe, viable communities that enhance the quality of life for all Americans, especially those of low- and moderate-income. NAHRO's membership administers more than 3 million housing units for 7.6 million people.