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Habitat For Humanity - New York City Names Neil Hetherington As Chief Executive Officer

NEW YORK, Feb. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Habitat for Humanity – New York City is extremely pleased to welcome Neil Hetherington as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Hetherington served as the Chief Executive Officer of Habitat for Humanity Toronto for the past twelve years, and brings deep experience in all facets of leading and successfully growing the number of low-income working families who help themselves become first-time homeowners and improve the communities in which they live.

As CEO, Mr. Hetherington will oversee Habitat-NYC's operations in all five boroughs, including completing the "100 Homes in Brooklyn Initiative", which was launched two years ago to revitalize some of the poorest and most underserved neighborhoods in Brooklyn. The initiative is providing homeownership opportunities for more than 100 families and improving community centers and other local facilities that touch the lives of all in these communities.

Habitat-NYC specializes in providing affordable single and multi-family home construction and rehabilitation, financial education, and community improvements. Most recently, Habitat-NYC began acquiring a series of vacant, run-down homes in Queens. Renovations of two homes in Laurelton will begin in the spring of 2013. The organization has also begun demolition and clean-up work for homeowners affected by Hurricane Sandy in several target areas of the City, including Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island and will be expanding these efforts in the coming months.

The Board of Directors looks forward to the continued growth of Habitat-NYC. "With Neil as our new CEO, we have attracted one of the top leaders of Habitat for Humanity in the world, with the experience, judgment, integrity, and unwavering commitment to provide more New Yorkers with better homes and communities in which to live, translating into better health, education, and safety in the neighborhoods we serve," said Peter Knitzer, Chairman of Habitat-NYC's Board, who knows New York's communities as former Chairman & CEO of Citibank, North America.

During Mr. Hetherington's 12-year tenure at Habitat Toronto, he accelerated its building program from an average of one home every two years to 45 annually. In 2013, Habitat Toronto has plans to break ground on 250 homes for low- and moderate-income families. During his tenure as CEO of Habitat Toronto, Mr. Hetherington also created ReStore retail operations, which pay for all administration expenses, enabling 100% of contributions from donors to go directly towards helping Habitat families and communities. In addition to his work in Toronto, Mr. Hetherington has also been an active Habitat volunteer in many locations around the world.

"I am humbled by the opportunity to serve the men and women of New York who are in need of affordable housing. I am grateful to the Board of Directors, volunteers and staff that I will be joining who continuously demonstrate a deep commitment to putting others first in the community."

Prior to joining Habitat Toronto, Mr. Hetherington started his career in project management at Tridel Construction, Canada's largest condominium developer.  Mr. Hetherington holds degrees or certificates from University of Western Ontario - Huron College, Seneca College, Harvard Business School and the University of Virginia - Darden Business School. He recently completed his MBA at the University of Western Ontario's Ivey Business School.

Mr. Hetherington is the recipient of:
  • The Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal (2002)
  • The Georgian Alumnus Award of Distinction from Royal Saint George's College
  • The Distinguished Alumni Award from Seneca College (2004)
  • Canada's Top 40 Under 40 Award (2006)
  • The 2007 Award of Merit from the University of Western Ontario
  • The 2009 Medal of Distinction from Huron University
  • The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012)

In addition to his many accomplishments, Mr. Hetherington is an active pilot and sailor. He enjoys furniture making as well as tennis, snowboarding, running and bike riding.

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