Hamden man to head state homeless advocacy agency
The state’s leading advocacy group for the homeless has name a new chief executive officer.
Richard Cho, who resides with his wife and children in Hamden, will begin his new duties with the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness on Nov. 26.
“We are delighted to welcome Richard to the CCEH family,” said Cathy Zeiner, president of the Hartford-based group’s board of directors. . “Richard brings remarkable experience to our organization and we are look forward to working with him to end homelessness for the most vulnerable individuals and families in our state.”
Cho has spent 20 years in the housing and homelessness sector including three years as deputy director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, the federal agency that coordinates the federal response to homelessness. There Cho coordinated efforts across 19 federal departments to implement Opening Doors, the federal strategic plan to end and prevent homelessness in America, and played a key role in the national push to end veteran and chronic homelessness.
He currently serves on New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Crisis Prevention and Response Task Force, as well as the Kings County/Brooklyn (NY) District Attorney Eric Gonzalez’s Justice 2020 Committee, Mental Health Subcommittee. He received a Masters degree in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a doctorate in philosophy from New York University.
“It is especially meaningful to me that when we succeed, the families, children, and individuals who will have homes will be my own neighbors, here in the state I have called home for more than a decade,” Cho said.
The Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness estimates that there are 4,500 homeless state residents every night and that one in every five are children. The Coalition serves as an advocate for homeless services, does research and analysis on the issue and causes in Connecticut and provides emergency support for homeless individuals.
The search was conducted with support from NPAG, a national firm that partners with mission-driven clients in the nonprofit and public sectors as well as the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven, the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, and the Melville Charitable Trust.