Everett’s Housing Hope Making Changes In Top Leadership

October 1, 2015


Just got in a press release from Housing Hope as they adjust to their growing role in helping people in Everett and Snohomish County with affordable housing and the skills to maintain a stable lifestyle.


Fred Safstrom is now the new CEO at Housing Hope

Local non-profit Housing Hope is reorganizing its leadership structure.

Fred Safstrom, the agency’s Chief Operating Officer, has been promoted to Chief Executive Officer. Ed Petersen, CEO of Housing Hope, has transitioned to Chief Strategic Officer.

Both Safstrom and Petersen’s new roles will extend to Housing Hope’s affiliates including HopeWorks Social Enterprises.

Safstrom has been involved with the agency since the early 1990’s when he was recruited to join a fundraising committee. He was elected to the Board of Directors in 1997 where he served for nine years including the last two as President. Following his tenure on the Board, he joined agency staff in 2006 where he has served in various leadership positions.  Safstrom’s professional career began at Cascade Bank where he worked for 24 years, including the last 10 years as President and COO. He then became the Executive Director for the Everett Public Facilities District during the development and establishment of the Everett Special Events Center (now Xfinity Arena).

“I am honored to be named to this important position,” said Safstrom. “Housing Hope is making a tremendous difference for so many lives in our community and I look forward to working with our Board, staff, volunteers and supporters to deepen and broaden this very important work.”

Petersen is the founding Executive Director of Housing Hope, which started in 1987 and just celebrated its 28th birthday. Petersen has nurtured Housing Hope since its inception and helped shape it to the housing, job training and child development agency that it is today.  Much of Petersen’s new focus will be on the strategic and financial development of HopeWorks and HopeWorks Station – creating more social enterprises and developing workforce housing onsite for individuals wanting to pursue jobs and internships at the social enterprises.

“I am looking forward to my new role as Chief Strategic Officer,” said Petersen. “It will allow me to focus on continuing the advancement of the agency, but in a very specific way. Moving someone as capable as Fred to the CEO position is a natural progression and a move that will benefit Housing Hope as it continues to grow.”

The reorganization comes at a time when Housing Hope is gearing up to make a bigger impact on family homelessness and poverty in Snohomish County and Camano Island:

  • Monroe Family Village, the agency’s east-county regional center including 47 residential units serving homeless and very-low income households with children, is the biggest development in Housing Hope’s history and will be opening on October 30.
  • Twin Lakes Landing at Smokey Point, breaking ground next summer, will be the agency’s north county regional center and will include 50 residential units serving homeless and very-low income families.
  • HopeWorks will soon be launching their fourth social enterprise – CafeWorks at HopeWorks Station, which is the first step towards an anticipated culinary training program.
  • Phase 2 of HopeWorks Station on Broadway in Everett is planned to be a workforce housing and job training center designed to enable homeless and very-low income households to achieve prosperity.
  • “This is a very exciting time at Housing Hope,” said Patty DeGroodt, Housing Hope Board President. “With the agency’s growth all over Snohomish County, having Ed transition to a Chief Strategic Officer position will target his vision in specific areas. Fred’s knowledge and expertise of Housing Hope and the community will keep the momentum and success of the agency going strong.”

    About Housing Hope

    Housing Hope, founded in 1987, recognizes that safe, decent and affordable housing is the first step towards solving poverty for struggling families. The innovative concept to provide a full range of housing with housing-related support services is a hallmark of the Housing Hope approach. Housing Hope combines emergency shelter and affordable housing with critical services such as life-skills training, childcare, employment services, and other family support services to help families reach self-sufficiency. Housing Hope also offers sweat-equity homeownership opportunities for low-income households in Snohomish County and Camano Island. Housing Hope’s website is www.housinghope.org.

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