When homeless, Colorado Representative Jackson will assume a key role in the Federal Housing Agency
State Representative Dominique Jackson, an Aurora Democrat who is serving her third term in the Colorado House of Representatives, is stepping down from her elected post for an influential position in the Biden administration.
President Joe Biden has appointed Jackson as regional administrator for the Department of Housing and Urban Development, where she will lead HUD’s efforts to help people find and stay housing, enforce fair and anti-discrimination loan laws, access rent assistance, and more. The announcement came in a friday statement of the White House.
“It’s in many ways a continuation of the work I did,” Jackson said in an interview. “It’s about continuing to serve the community in an even greater way. “
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As a Region 8 administrator, Jackson will oversee HUD operations in Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming.
Jackson submitted a letter of resignation from his House office that was accepted Monday, according to Jarrett Freedman, spokesperson for the Colorado House Democrats. A vacancy committee has until mid-January to appoint Jackson’s replacement, who will complete the legislature ending in 2022.
“I am proud of the work I have done in the Legislature,” said Jackson, “and I am delighted for my colleagues. I know they will continue to do a great job for the people of the state of Colorado. “
Jackson’s House District 42 is a strong Democrat. So far, two Democrats, Kyle Leggott and Eric Nelson, and a Republican, Cory Parella, have run for the seat next November.
Until her resignation from the state legislature, Jackson served as chair of the Affordable Housing Transformation Task Force, which is finalizing a plan to allocate $ 400 million in federal funds to housing initiatives in Colorado. . Along with Representative Leslie Herod, a Democrat from Denver, Jackson sponsored a 2020 law banning housing discrimination based on income source.
“Colorado residents have been grappling with a housing crisis for years – and it’s only getting worse,” Colorado US Senator Michael Bennet, a Democrat, said in a statement Friday. “We need experienced leaders like State Representative Dominique Jackson at HUD to address this critical issue. From his time in the Colorado Legislature to his work with Aurora City Council (on a Housing and Development Committee), I am confident that in this new role, State Representative Jackson will help to guarantee families a safe living space.
Senator John Hickenlooper, also a Democrat from Colorado, called Jackson an “exceptional choice.”
“She has championed affordable housing and has a deep understanding of how to serve marginalized communities,” Hickenlooper said in a statement.
As a state representative, Jackson chaired the House energy and environment committee. She sponsored major legislation earlier this year that tightened regulations on greenhouse gas emissions and spoke at the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference.
“We are delighted that someone with such an accomplished track record in the fight for tenant rights, environmental justice and the voice of underserved communities is joining the Region VIII HUD team,” Michele Perez, Deputy Deputy secretary of HUD’s field policy office and management, said in a statement Tuesday. Ms. Jackson’s background and experience in helping rural and urban communities will be an invaluable asset to the Rocky Mountain region of HUD.
Having experienced homeless as a teenager, Jackson knows what it’s like to have insecure housing. She plans to bring that perspective to her new role, she told Newsline.
“I share the same kind of lived experiences that many people I have served in the past and will continue to serve in this role now and into the future,” said Jackson. “Coming from this place is more than empathy, but it’s a real lived experience that informs us in a different way, and I hope this kind of lived experience will always help me. remember to listen, to sit down and to really listen.