Vice President - Development
Office: Birmingham, AL
Focus: Development of affordable housing using a variety of public and private financing sources that builds upon inherent neighborhood value and works to reach a community’s full potential.
Experience: Carlen earned her J.D. from the University of Alabama School of Law and B.S. in Management from the University of Alabama. After falling in love with the promise of public-private partnerships in affordable housing development in law school, Carlen joined an Alabama housing authority embarking on its first agency redevelopment – a 1940s era public housing community adjacent to a hospital and the city center. Ten years and more than $150 million in private investments later, the mixed-use community is a living, thriving example of the opportunities for synergistic development that includes affordable housing.
Impressive Facts: Carlen has worked diligently to connect resources with needs. She is a past president of the Junior League of Huntsville where she focused on connecting literacy resources to children and families; the first Katherine and Richard Lester Emerging Arts Contribution Award winner for her work with local arts organizations; a member of the Veterans Treatment Court task force of the Alabama State Bar; and a member of the AAHRA and SERC legislative committees.
Fun Stuff: Carlen enjoys spending time with her husband, Thomas, and three kids. They are in the process of visiting every state as a family, and every courthouse in Alabama.
Commonwealth is a company that puts community first – it isn’t about developing the cheapest units on the cheapest land. Rather, it is a company that believes in developing quality, affordable housing for many of our most vulnerable neighbors.
Nancy McKenzie, Executive Director , Rhinelander Housing Authority
Commonwealth has been extremely professional and courteous to the staff and the residents still living in our facility. They exceeded our expectations during the construction project as well as during the renovation of a 1923 school. Both projects have turned out to be beautiful and successful for our community.