HUDSON — Pasco County housing commissioners say they will interview every qualified applicant for the executive director position that has been vacant since Dianne Morris resigned earlier this year.
The Housing Authority board met this week for the first time since the application deadline in late June. Interim director Linda Wright said the authority received dozens of applications, but only seven met the minimum qualifications — a college degree and six years of public housing management experience — and were still interested in the job.
Three of the finalists are from Florida. The others are from Tennessee, Massachusetts and California. Commissioners decided to conduct the first round of interviews via Skype, and then invite the top three to Dade City in October at the authority’s expense.
“At the end of the day, if they come from Massachusetts, California or an alien ship — if they’re best for the housing authority it doesn’t matter,” Chairman David Lambert said.
The executive director is responsible for a $15 million annual budget and more than 2,000 housing units throughout the county. Some notable applicants who didn’t make the cut were Terry Schrader, brother of County Commissioner Ted Schrader, and Suzanne Salichs, former assistant county administrator.
The eight finalists are:
Michael Bishop of Murfreesboro, Tennessee: Bishop has managed two high-performing public housing agencies in Tennessee and holds a master’s degree in counseling from Tennessee Technical University. He has been at his current job since 2006.
Patrick A. Morganelli of Norfolk, Massachusetts: Morganelli has served as executive director of two public housing agencies in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. He currently manages a public golf course. He has a bachelor’s degree from Springfield College and is taking graduate courses in economic development at Southern New Hampshire University.
Donald Paredez of Winter Haven: Paredez is currently vice president of housing compliance for Meridian Behavioral Healthcare. He has held eight jobs in the last 10 years, never staying at one for longer than two years. He graduated from Saint Petersburg College and attended USF.
Harold A. Phipps of Beverly Hills, Fla.: Phipps has worked as a consultant and adviser for several public housing agencies in New York and New Jersey. He has a master’s degree in accounting from Rutgers University and is working on a doctorate degree.
Linda Marie Shaw of Revere, Massachusetts: Shaw is a U.S. Navy veteran who has held top positions in several housing agencies, including Tulsa, Oklahoma, New Orleans, Philadelphia and now Revere, Mass. She has a master’s degree from the University of Utah. Shaw implemented policies that moved the Revere Housing Authority from troubled status to “high-performer” status in less than a year.
Nancy Wesoff of Monrovia, California: Wesoff has served as executive director of several housing agencies, including Lakeland and Las Vegas, where she led the department from troubled to high-performer status. She is currently working in Los Angeles as president of LOMOD Corp., a subsidiary of the city’s housing authority, where she oversees 46,000 housing units and a $382 million budget. She has a bachelor of science degree from Ball State University.
Eugenia Gainers of Lakeland: Gainers is a former resident services manager for the Lakeland Housing Authority and most recently worked as the executive director of a nonprofit organization. She has a master’s degree in business technology education from the University of Southern Mississippi.