David Wizansky (Board President) is the Co-Founder and President of Specialized Housing, Inc., which organizes and maintains numerous community-based supportive living arrangements for people with special needs. Founder of the first self-advocacy group for people with developmental disabilities in the United States, he has created residential programs, and community diversion and treatment programs for youth-at-risk and disabled adults. He and his wife, Margot, also helped develop one of the first home ownership opportunities for disabled individuals in the nation. A graduate of Harvard College and Boston University School of Social Work, David holds a Master’s degree in Social Service and is licensed as an Independent Clinical Social Worker in Massachusetts.
Charles Silsby (Board Vice President) is Director of Specialized Housing Inc., and serves on the board of the Massachusetts Association of Community Residences for Independent Living. His extensive experience includes work with Maine’s disabled and at-risk youth populations—where he supervised and trained staff, performed clinical assessments, developed treatment plans, and facilitated individual, group and family counseling sessions. Chuck holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Social Work, both from the University of Maine.
Harold Fortna (Board Treasurer) is an Electrical Engineer with significant management experience, as well as expertise in developing funding and business development proposals. A graduate of Auburn University, Hal is the Treasurer of his local National Alliance on Mental Illness affiliate, and board chair for the Universalist Unitarian Church of Haverhill.
David Rozenson (Board Clerk) is a securities lawyer with extensive experience serving investment management firms, private investment companies, mutual funds, commodity trading advisors, and other financial service providers. He is Counsel and Compliance Consultant with Boston Compliance Associates, and was formerly Associate General Counsel at Columbia Management and Bank of America. David serves on the boards of Greater Boston Legal Services and Temple Emanuel in Newton, Mass., and as a volunteer instructor in a financial literacy program for high school students. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a law degree from Boston College Law School; and clerked with the Hon. Joseph Warner of the Massachusetts Appeals Court.
Nancy Ames Slabine is co-founder and senior partner of BoldMoves Consulting, which provides nonprofits with strategic fundraising, training, and customized support. Previously, she worked as senior researcher and project manager for Abt Associates; served 22 years as Vice President of EDC, a nonprofit dedicated to enhancing education and health around the globe; and launched CORE Consulting Services, which provided communication and fundraising support to education organizations. An expert in middle-grades education, she founded the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform, and helped launch the Urban Special Education Leadership Collaborative, supporting special education leaders from over 100 school districts. Nancy holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Math from Tufts University and a Master’s Degree in Education Counseling from Fresno State University.
Seth Haber is a Senior Associate for the Office of Compliance and Review at University of Massachusetts Medical School Commonwealth Medicine, where he oversees health care compliance and provides legal advice and assistance. He has served as counsel for the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services’ Division of Medical Assistance and for the Massachusetts Rate Setting Commission. Seth has been a hearing officer/counsel for the Cambridge Rent Control Board; has co-authored publications on rent control and education of children with special needs; and received the Reginald Heber Smith Community Lawyer Fellowship. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York and a law degree from Fordham Law School.
Larry Heimlich has been a business growth and development catalyst for more than 25 years—helping companies advance their software, hardware and business services. His product experiences range from artificial hearts and medical devices to HR software and employee insurance and benefits. An invited speaker at industry meetings, and author of numerous articles and white papers, he holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering, a Master’s degree in Bioengineering, and a Master of Business Administration degree. Larry is also a board member of the Carroll Center for the Blind and a trustee at Temple Emanuel, both in Newton, MA.
Clifford Smith has been a professional in the investment management industry since 1998. He formerly acted as the Assistant Director of International Value Equities with The Boston Company Asset Management, as Senior Managing Director. Prior to this Cliff worked in project finance, and earlier as an engineer focused on power generating systems with GE and the US DOE. Cliff holds a Bachelor and Master degree in Aerospace Engineering, as well as a Master of Business Administration degree.
Karen Smith is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and partner with CohnReznick in Boston, a national firm offering accounting, tax and advisory services. Karen has more than 25 years experience providing audit, tax and management advisory services to not for profit organizations. Karen is a Board member for the Children’s Center of Lexington. She holds a B.S. degree in Accounting from the University of Akron.
Peter Roth has spent the last 30 years creating innovative housing and mixed use developments in the Boston area, and teaching others how to do the same at MIT in the graduate degree program in real estate development. His focus on housing has included service-enriched housing for people with a wide range of special needs, from frail elders to developmentally and physically disabled individuals, and those with chronic mental health issues. Along the way, he has given new life to abandoned historic buildings like Roxbury’s Hibernian Hall (now that neighborhood’s premier venue for performance and community gatherings) and the Upham’s Corner Market, rehabbed former factories, built new live-work space for artists, and created hundreds of affordable homes and apartments in the Boston area. Now retired from active development, he continues to teach part-time at MIT, and is engaged in a number of charitable initiatives in the Boston area and Downeast Maine to address the unmet housing and service needs of individuals and families.