Alameda County Housing and Community Development Department (HCD) Staff

Michelle Starratt, HCD Director has blond longish hair and and is wearing a black blazer over a button down shirt
Michelle Starratt, HCD Director


Michelle Starratt, Director
Alameda County Housing & Community Development Department (HCD)

Michelle returned to the County in March of 2020 just as the COVID-19 Pandemic began after spending eighteen months at UC Berkeley as their Director of Housing Development. During the pandemic, she successfully implemented the County-wide Emergency Rental Assistance Program providing over 130 million of funding to over 9k low-income county tenants with funds to cover rent. During the last four years, she oversaw the successful implementation of the Measure A1 Affordable Housing Bond Programs, reorganized the department, and finalized a countywide housing needs assessment report to identify the highest housing priorities in the county. 

With 30 years of career experience in the field, Michelle brings compassion to her role as Housing Director. She has led large-scale initiatives that enhance community programs and address public needs, successfully raising funding for housing and special needs programs through research, grant writing, and program development. Prior to UC Berkeley, Michelle spent 20 years working for Alameda County’s Housing and Community Development Department, 10 years as the Assistant Director. Michelle has focused on identifying resources for low income communities and focused on special needs tenants, including those with HIV/AIDS, Mental health Issues, and those who have been homeless. 

Eileen De Guzman, a beautiful smiling woman with her long, dark hair in a cute bun on the top of her head, she is wearing a black leather jacket over a black shirt

Eileen De Guzman, Secretary to the Director, Secretary II

Eileen De Guzman joined Alameda County Housing & Community Development Department (HCD) in 1998 as the secretary to the Housing Director and as the Office Manager. Eileen has about 30 years of knowledge and experience with Alameda County processes. Her biggest accomplishment to date is managing the conversion of the old HCD office, which was still using fast-deteriorating cubicles from the 1990s, to a more welcoming, modern, shared hotel workspace full of collaboration areas that act as impromptu meeting spaces. Outside of work, Eileen has a passion for gardening and dance exercise. 

Housing Finance Division Leadership

John Lo, Asian man wearing a sharp suit and tie with white shirt, smiling

John Lo, Assistant Deputy Director

John Lo, JD, joined Alameda County HCD in March 2022. Before joining HCD, John spent 6 years at the Santa Clara County Housing Authority and 8 years practicing law in California. 

John has spent most of his career protecting housing stability, improving housing access, supporting tenancy for those in need, and increasing affordable housing supply. John’s diverse experience has shown him both the breadth and the depth of the need for housing in California. As one of HCD’s Deputy Housing Directors, John Lo supervises the Housing Development and Asset Management Teams, financing the construction, acquisition, and rehabilitation of affordable housing, and ensuring quality and compliance after the housing is built. 

Housing Development Team

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Saleemah Jones, HCD Manager

Saleemah Jones, JD, is the Housing Development Manager for the Housing Finance Department. She administers the Measure A1 funding for affordable projects. To date, MA1 has funded 4,117 affordable rental units in Alameda County and committed over $377 million in MA1 funds. She is a native of Oakland, Calif., whose undergraduate studies were accomplished at Grambling State University and attained her juris doctorate degree from Thurgood Marshall School of Law. Saleemah also runs a nonprofit theatre company, Put Ur Play On Productions.

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  • Anne Olivia Eldred, HCD Specialist

    Anne Olivia started with Alameda County as the Homeless Services Liaison for District 1, joining HCD in 2020. She is the Labor Compliance Lead for Affordable Housing Construction. Anne Olivia is a committed advocate for social, racial, environmental, and economic justice. She has fought for over two decades for effective outreach and meaningful engagement in policy formation. Anne Olivia holds a Master of Environmental Law and Policy from Vermont Law School, with a concentration in Energy Law and has served in numerous civic positions including Ava Community Energy (EBCE) and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, working on the formation of Plan Bay Area 2050.
Leticia Tijero, a truly lovely woman with longish dark brown hair, falling below her shoulders. She is waring a white sweater with a 
  • Leticia Tijero, HCD Specialist

    Leticia Tijero joined Housing and Community Development (HCD) in 2018 as a Specialist Clerk and is now an HCD Specialist, serving as a project manager on the Housing Finance team. As a project manager, she focuses on Measure A1 affordable housing developments in Alameda County, overseeing and monitoring various stages of the project’s lifecycle, including pre-development, construction, and conversion into permanent financing. Prior to her role with HCD, she dedicated a decade to Alameda County Public Health Department’s Chronic Disease program. Born and raised in Hayward, Calif., Leticia finds fulfillment in serving her community, including as a founding member of the Mexican folk dancing group, Grupo Folklorico Tlapalli.
Monica Leite, a friendly woman with dark shot hair and tortice shell glsses wearing a dark blue striped button up shirt with a white base.
  • Monica Leite, HCD Specialist

    Monica Leite is a Project Manager for the Measure A1 affordable housing development projects on the Housing Finance Team. Prior to working with the Housing Finance Team, she spent two years working with the Community Development Team on CDBG, HOME and, HOPWA PI project. Prior to that she spent sixteen years working in Healthcare Service Agency for the County of Alameda. She has a passion for all public service work. When she is not managing projects, she is enjoying reading, trying new recipes, and spending time with friends, family, and her three cats.
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  • Pauline Blackwell, HCD Specialist

    Pauline Blackwell joined Alameda County as a Housing Specialist in 2022. At HCD, Pauline supports new construction and preservation of affordable housing projects from inception to construction completion, including navigating the complexities of funding awards, ensuring the efficient use of financial resources, and overseeing the construction phases. Pauline leverages her prior experience as an affordable housing developer, reflecting a strategic approach to addressing the housing crisis. Pauline is creating a more inclusive and equitable approach to community development, emphasizing the importance of diverse housing solutions that cater to the varied needs of the county’s residents.
Topaz Hayden is a joyous young woman who looks like a lot of fun, she has short, natural hair and is wearing a sharp blouse with blue, black and red geometric lines on it.
  • Topaz Hayden, HCD Specialist II

    Topaz Hayden has over three years of experience working in the affordable housing sector. She currently oversees construction labor and compliance as a project manager for affordable housing developments funded by Alameda County’s Measure A1 Regional Bond. As of today, she is currently the project manager for several projects that total 367 units of affordable housing. Topaz holds a Master’s in Public Administration with a concentration in Policy Analysis from California State University East Bay. She believes in providing excellent customer service to all stakeholders. Topaz also volunteers, feeding unhoused populations throughout the Bay Area and is an advocate for social justice.
Beth Griston, an attractive woman with brown hair that is cut in a bob wearing a coral shell under a black jacket with lipstick that matches.
  • Beth Griston, HCD Technician

    Beth joined HCD as a Financial Services Specialist in 2022 and is currently an HCD Technician supporting the Housing Development team.  She works with HCD Project Managers and CDA Finance on invoicing and funding issues, primarily for affordable housing rental development projects that receive Measure A1 and HOME funds. Beth graduated from UPenn and received an MBA in finance & accounting from NYU Stern School of Business. Her previous work experience is in financial reporting and public accounting/auditing.  Beth and her family relocated to Alameda County 20 years ago, and she enjoys amateur photography, genealogy, and volunteering for her local animal shelter.
Charnell Baker, a beautiful, vital young woman with long hair in braids, wearing a black cowl-neck sweater and a beautiful smile.
  • Charnell Baker, Specialist Clerk I

    Charnell has a passion for serving the community through her work with HCD, where she plays a crucial role in the organization. Her attention to detail, organizational skills, and commitment to excellence makes her an invaluable asset to the Housing Development team. Charnell is a devoted mother whose adventurous spirit and love of travel inspires her to seek new experiences to broaden her horizons.
Linnea Coultrip, a vibrant young woman with long light-brown hair wearing a dark blue blazer over a floral geometric shell and a big smile
  • Linnea Coultrip, Temporary Assignment

    Linnea joined HCD as a Financial Services Specialist with the Homeless team in 2022. She worked on funding and invoicing related to Homeless team contracts. She now supports the Housing Development team, working with HCD project managers and CDA Finance on invoicing and funding for affordable housing rental development projects that receive Measure A1 and HOME funds. Outside of work, Linnea enjoys traveling, hiking, and baking.

Asset Management Team

Elizabeth Cook, manager of the Asset Management Team has almost shoulder length blond hair and is wearing a magenta shell under a black jacket

Elizabeth Cook, HCD Manager

Elizabeth J. Cook, MPA, is the HCD Manager for the Asset Manager Team. The team oversees compliance of 130+ affordable rental development projects, which received loan funds for pre-development, acquisition, and construction through our department throughout the past 50 years. Elizabeth leverages her degrees from UC Davis and Cal State University East Bay along with 30 years of public service in community development, commercial redevelopment, and as a housing development leader to guide the Asset Management Team. Our team collaborates with community partners to ensure our public investment is managed with integrity, and builds a legacy of positive long-term impact on the community we serve.   

Susan Blampied, a lovely woman with dangling earring and beautiful long red wavy hair. She's wearing a black jacket over a grey shell.
  • Susan Blampied, HCD Specialist

    Susan Blampied joined Alameda County in July 2019. She manages a portfolio of affordable rental developments, including managing the annual reporting process, overseeing monitoring, and responding to requests from owners to ensure project compliance. Susan utilizes her prior experience in compliance and asset management, gained while working for a local non-profit affordable housing developer. While with Alameda County, she received her Asset Management Specialist (AMS) certification from the Consortium for Housing and Asset Management (CHAM).
Christina Kim, a beautiful woman wearing a black scoop neck top with long hair that starts with dark roots and gradually lightens to blond
  • Christina Kim, HCD Specialist

    Christina Kim joined Alameda County in 2022. She manages a portfolio of affordable rental developments, including managing the annual reporting process, overseeing monitoring, and responding to requests from owners to ensure project compliance. Prior to joining HCD, Christina gained her experience in affordable housing while working for a local nonprofit, Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI).  She earned her Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from Cal State East Bay (CSUEB) and is currently working on the Asset Management Specialist (AMS) certification from the Consortium for Housing and Asset Management (CHAM).
Jim Agostino, a handsome older man with short grey hair wearing glasses and a blue checker shirt with a slate jacket
  • Jim Agostino, HCD Technician

    Jim Agostino joined Alameda County in 2020 as part of the Registrar of Voters, then transitioned to HCD in 2021. At HCD, he supports the Contract Compliance and Housing Finance teams. Now, as part of the Asset Management team, Jim assists with the management of over 130 affordable housing projects in the portfolio. He works on collecting data and analytics for labor and wage compliance reports for new construction projects and is conducting insurance compliance reviews for existing projects. He has a diverse background, from owning a small business to working in sales for a big tech company. Jim is from Seattle, where he earned a BA in psychology and economics at the University of Washington. Jim likes to create and compose music and enjoys playing the piano.

Housing Division Leadership

Jennifer Pearce, woman wearing a light blue shirt with longish dark hair, smiling

Jennifer Pearce, Assistant Deputy Director

Jennifer Pearce is a seasoned professional in the realm of housing management and community development, currently serving as one of the Deputy Housing Directors for Alameda County. With a tenure that spans back to 2014, Jennifer has dedicated herself to the betterment of housing initiatives within the county.

Jennifer’s expertise lies in strategic planning, policy development, and program implementation within the housing sector. Her collaborative approach fosters partnerships with stakeholders across government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and community groups, aiming to amplify the impact of housing initiatives. Through her leadership, Jennifer spearheads efforts to expand affordable housing options, tackle homelessness, and promote equitable access to housing resources throughout Alameda County.

As a Deputy Housing Director, Jennifer plays a pivotal role in shaping the county’s housing policies and initiatives, ensuring they align with the overarching goals of fostering inclusive and vibrant communities. Her dedication to serving the residents of Alameda County is evident in pursuing innovative solutions to address the diverse housing needs of the region.

Community Development Team

Kelly Thiemann has grown up a lot since this picture was taken, maybe at about 2ish. Also in real life, she's in color, not black and white.

Kelly Thiemann, HCD Manager

Kelly Thiemann has been with Alameda County Housing and Community Development Department since 1999. She manages four federal funding sources and associated programs: Community Development Block Grant (CDBG); Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG); HOME, and Housing Opportunities for Persons with HIV/AIDS (HOPWA). She serves as staff for the Housing and Community Development Advisory Committee (HCDAC), the HOME Consortium, and the Urban County Technical Advisory Committees. She is currently working on expanding programs into the Unincorporated County.

Katie Alducin has a black hair in a cute bob and is wearing a cozy sweater the color of honey.
  • Katie Alducin, HCD Specialist

    Katie Alducin is a program specialist providing support for community development initiatives funded by both federal and local sources including: HOME, the Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG), the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), and Boomerang. One of her favorite programs is Downtown Streets Team, a street-beautification program in Hayward which provides transitional employment opportunities, case management, and a strong-knit community. Prior to joining HCD, Katie worked and lived in a Housing Cooperative in Berkeley, managing the co-op’s budget for over 1,200 student residents across 20 properties. A proud resident of Alameda County since 2014, Katie has earned a degree in Applied Mathematics from UC Berkeley.
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  • Trina Walker, HCD Specialist III

    Trina Walker, MCP, joined Alameda County in 2010 to provide project management and program support to the Neighborhood Stabilization I and II programs. Currently, she works as contract manager for the Housing Opportunities for People with AIDS grant (HOPWA) and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG). She is currently working with county staff, unincorporated county service providers, and community members to align and improve the resources available to residents and business owners in the unincorporated county utilizing Community Development Block Grant funds. Trina graduated from UC Berkeley with honors in 2005 with a BA in African American Studies; in 2008 she received her Masters of City Planning degree from UC Berkeley.

Housing Policy and Programs Team

Dylan Sweeney, a nice looking man wearing a white shirt with polka dots under a dark grey jacket

Dylan Sweeney, HCD Manager

Dylan Sweeney, MPP, is the HCD Manager for the Policy and Programs Team. Dylan brings ten years of affordable housing experience in county, state, and federal government to his role. Dylan studied geography and urban at Temple University and received his master’s in public policy from American University. Dylan’s roots are in changing neighborhoods, and he is deeply committed to restorative policy, equitable development, preserving communities, and expanding opportunity. He is excited about contributing to building HCD’s knowledge, capacity, and connections as Alameda County becomes a leader in addressing the housing cost and equity challenges in the Bay Area. The Housing Policy and Program team oversees over a dozen locally funded services supporting Almeda County residents’ housing needs, develops and evaluates new programs, and provides its housing policy expertise to decision makers, partners, and the general public.

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  • Aaron Tiedemann, HCD Specialist

    Aaron Tiedemann rejoined HCD in 2024 as a Housing Specialist after previously working with the department for almost three years. In his time at HCD, Aaron has worked to develop and implement a variety of policy programs, including dispersing millions through Measure A1 to support new affordable housing, and developing the County’s COVID-19 Eviction Moratorium. Aaron is an East Bay native, and holds a BA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from the University of Warwick, and a Master’s in Public Policy from UC Berkeley. 
Nick Draper, a clean cut man wearing a dark jacket with a cool zebra swirly stiped shirt
  • Nick Draper, HCD Specialist

    Nick Draper joined Alameda County as a Policy Coordinator in 2020 and is now an HCD Specialist. Throughout his time with HCD, he has worked on programs to support housing stability and protections for low-income populations, including the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP), the AC Housing Secure legal services program, and the Alameda County Affordable Housing Portal. Through ERAP over $135 million in rental assistance has been distributed to low-income households facing housing instability throughout Alameda County. Nick has lived in the East Bay since 2013 and is proud to call Alameda County home. He received a BA in Political Science from UC Santa Cruz and a Master’s in Public Policy from UC Berkeley.
Stefani Katz, an amazing woman with light brown hair in a cute bob wearing a brown shirt with a pendant
  • Stefani Katz, HCD Specialist

    Stefani Katz is a Housing Specialist on the Policy and Programs Team responsible for department-wide communication, policy development, and legislative tracking. Overseeing the department’s social media and online communication, among other things, she is tasked with keeping the public informed of all things HCD. A transplanted East Coaster, Stefani earned her Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from San Francisco State University and has worked in government for multiple cities, counties, and one governor.
Teresa Hester, a beautiful woman with long hair wearing a flowery black and white blouse who looks like she's a lot of fun
  • Teresa Hester, HCD Specialist

    As a Housing Specialist, Teresa manages a variety of unique homeownership programs for first-time homebuyers, current homeowners, and rental housing providers. She manages the collaboration with program administrators to ensure county residents have continued access to valuable resources that support stable housing. Teresa is a Bay Area native, who received her BS in Community and Regional Development from the University of California, Davis. She began her career with Alameda County in 2018 with the General Services Agency, transitioning to Housing and Community Development in 2019. Outside of work Teresa stays busy with her twins.
Toni Emmerson, a beautiful Black woman with long hair wearing a red shirt under a grey jacket.
  • Toni Emmerson, HCD Specialist

    Toni Emmerson joined the HCD team in 2021 and she worked on the county’s Emergency Rental Assistance Program. As a specialist, she manages Capacity Building Programs such as, Affordable Housing Development and the Unincorporated County Community-Based-Organizations.
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  • Angelica Guardiancic, HCD Technician

    Angelica joined HCD in 2021, working with the home preservation program and the first-time home buyers program. She processes invoices and continues to work with our down-payment assistance program, AC Boost, and our home preservation loan program, called RenewAC. Angelica also manages the unincorporated mobile home rent registry, making sure mobile home parks are following the county’s ordinance.
Tish Henry, A woman with longish red hair bearing a dark blue shirt and glasses
  • Trish (Patricia) Henry, Temporary Assignment, Web Designer III

    Trish builds and manages websites and web properties. She enjoyed building this website. Something she loves about working at HCD is finding solutions for her team, whether it’s creating a community calendar, using JotForm to create a grant application, or using an online video app to trim recordings of meetings, there’s always something to learn and accomplish. She has over thirty years experience working in the web and with video. She has a BFA in video and an MFA in writing, both from California College of Arts and Crafts.

Program Compliance Team

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Laura Kitsch, HCD Manager

Laura Kitsch is the Housing and Community Development Manager for the Program Compliance Team (PCT). The team provides internal operations support for HCD staff, management, and the Executive Team. We review and process hundreds of Board letters and contracts per year to ensure uninterrupted services to the community, prepare the department’s budget, are liaisons to the Agency for Human Resources, provide in-person office coverage daily, and more. Laura began her career with Alameda County in 1992 and has held administrative positions in eight Alameda County Agencies and Departments. Laura is proud of the collaboration within HCD and the Community Development Agency, and the much-needed services they provide to the community.

Flora Shek, a woman with long brown hair and a Mona Lisa smile, wearing a royal blue sweater
  • Flora Shek, Program and Financial Specialist

    Flora Shek is the Program/Financial Specialist for the Program Compliance Team (PCT), which offers internal operational support to HCD staff, management, and the Executive Team. Flora joined the Housing and Community Development Department (HCD) in March 2004 and departed in March 2022. During her tenure with HCD, Flora was responsible for budget development and processing, contract negotiation and administration, financial planning, reporting, and monitoring, grant management, contract administration, invoice processing, and cost recovery. Flora rejoined HCD in January 2024. Her new role includes reviewing and processing Board letters and contracts, as well as preparing the department’s budget.
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  • Homirah Amiri, HCD Specialist

    Bio goes here
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  • Jiayi Liu, HCD Specialist

    Jiayi joined HCD’s Homeless Division July 2019 prior to being promoted to the HCD Program Compliance Team. Jiayi reviews HCD board letters and contracts to ensure correct formatting and accuracy as determined by the County Administrator’s Office and County Counsel requirements, teaches and collaborates with HCD and PCT on Auditor-Controller Agency requirements for Small, Local and Emerging Business (SLEB) and processes waivers. She also builds and maintains the Airtable tracking system and assists in departmental budget development and tracking fiscal year administration and program expenditures. Jiayi earned a Bachelor of Sciences degree in Economics: Management Science at the University of California, San Diego in 2014, and earned a Master’s Degree in Business Administration at the San Francisco Bay University in 2018.
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  • Norma Grajeda, HCD Technician

    Bio goes here
Kimberly DeLand, a friendly looking Asian woman with shoulder length hair, wearing a dark blue sweater. She looks like a lot of fun.
  • Kimberly Deland, Secretary I

    As the Secretary for Housing and Community Development, Kimberly provides administrative support to the Asset Management, Community Development, Housing Development, Housing Policy and Programs, and Program Compliance Teams. She greets the community members when they visit/call our office and directs them to the appropriate resources that will serve their housing needs.
Trina Loggins, a beautiful soul with short hair, wearing a black shirt with sequins.
  • Trina Loggins, Temporary Assignment

    Trina Loggins provides programmatic assistance in support of HCD. Trina is currently involved in an effort to digitize files, working with managers to modernize the office systems. Trina also provides customer service at the front desk and on the phones when needed; providing information to the public.