Julián Castro, former mayor of San Antonio was today sworn in as the newest Secretary for the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Castro replaces former HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan, who has since assumed a new role as director of the Office of Management and Budget and who served in his HUD post for more than five years.
The new HUD chief is tasked with driving the housing market forward on the heels of uneven recovery, among other tasks, a Bloomberg News article noted upon his appointment.
In his role as mayor of San Antonio, Castro was responsible for the launch of the “Decade of Downtown,” an initiative to drive investment in the city’s downtown and older neighborhoods. The effort has attracted $350 million in private sector investment to date and will support more than 2,400 housing units by year-end.
In addition, Castro was named to the World Economic Forum’s list of Young Global Leaders in 2010 and has been named a “40 under 40” rising politics star by Time magazine.
“Julián is a proven leader, a champion for safe, affordable housing and strong, sustainable neighborhoods,” President Barack Obama said after Castro’s confirmation. “I know that together with the dedicated professionals at HUD, Julián will help build on the progress we’ve made battling back from the Great Recession – rebuilding our housing market, reducing homelessness among veterans, and connecting neighborhoods with good schools and good jobs that help our citizens succeed.”
The Mortgage Bankers Association and other mortgage professionals have welcomed Castro to his new post, noting the challenges facing the housing recovery currently.
“As Secretary, Castro’s focus is ensuring that HUD is a transparent, efficient and effective champion for the people it serves,” HUD said following the swear-in. “Utilizing an evidence-based management style, he has charged the Department with one goal: giving every person, regardless of their station in life, new opportunities to thrive.”
Written by Elizabeth Ecker