In the News

April Black, Tacoma Housing Authority Executive Director, Elected to CLPHA Board

October 25, 2023
Council of Large Public Housing Authorities

CLPHA is pleased to announce that April Black, Executive Director of the Tacoma Housing Authority (THA), was elected to CLPHA’s board of directors at the board’s September 2023 meeting. 

“I am excited to have April Black join CLPHA’s board and be a part of shaping our organization’s national goals and priorities,” said Jeffery K. Patterson, president of CLPHA’s board and CEO of the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority. “April’s leadership in Tacoma demonstrates dedication, innovation, and, above all, compassion. I am confident that her perspective will help CLPHA continue to promote forward-thinking, resident-focused programs and policies.” 

“CLPHA congratulates April on her election to our board,” said CLPHA Executive Director Sunia Zaterman. “April has long been a vital voice in CLPHA’s membership, sharing with her peers her expertise and successes from THA’s groundbreaking cross-sector programs and partnerships. April is a strong champion not only for her community’s lowest-income families, but also the staff of THA. I know that in this new role she will continue to advocate for the resources, policy changes, services, and partnerships that can help all low-income families thrive.” 

April has worked for THA in several roles since joining the organization in 2009. In 2021, she became the first woman to serve as THA’s Executive Director since its inception in 1940. Building on the legacy of her predecessor, Michael Mirra, her impact on the public housing sector was felt almost immediately throughout the Pacific Northwest as she quickly began to implement groundbreaking policies designed to better the lives of THA clients and staff. 

Coming from humble beginnings in rural Montana, April understands the economic struggles and hardships faced by extremely low-income households more than most. Her compassion, empathy, and determination to combat poverty drove her to pursue a career in public housing over 20 years ago. She began working for housing authorities while pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Communication Studies at the University of Montana. Since then, she has worked at the Missoula (MT), Bremerton (WA), and Tacoma Housing Authorities in a variety of roles, establishing a reputation among industry peers as an innovative, rule-breaking thought leader.