Board of Commissioners

The PHA Board of Commissioners meets on the 3rd Thursday of each month at 3pm at 180 S. 32nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 unless otherwise noted below.

PHA Board Meeting Minutes are available for viewing online.

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2018 Board of Commissioners Meeting Schedule:

  • Thursday, May 17 at 3PM
  • Thursday, June 21 at 3PM

PHA Commissioners 

Chair Brown-Sow

Chair Lynette M. Brown-Sow is the Vice President of Marketing and Government Relations at the Community College of Philadelphia. In 1980, she founded L.M. Brown Management Group, a certified minority/female-owned consulting firm that provides professional services to corporations, non-profits, and governmental entities. As an entrepreneur, Ms. Brown-Sow helped to create Health Pass, one of the nation's first health insurance organizations, in the mid-1980s. In 2008, Mayor Michael Nutter appointed her to the Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment, which she chaired from 2010-2013. In 1991, then-Mayor Edward Rendell appointed Ms. Brown-Sow to the position of Deputy Mayor of Administration to manage appointees to all boards, commissions, and non-civil service positions.


Vice-Chair Herbert Wetzel is the Executive Director of Housing and Community Development for the Philadelphia City Council. He is also a founding member of the board of directors and former executive director of the Greater Germantown Housing Development Corporation. Mr. Wetzel has a long history of community development activities and during the past 20 years he established a small business in the Germantown section of Philadelphia to create neighborhood-based economic development and also served as Director, Deputy Executive Director and, upon appointment by former Mayor John Street, Executive Director of the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority.


Callahan Leslie D. Callahan, PhD serves as pastor of St. Paul's Baptist Church in North Philadelphia. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Religion from Harvard/Radcliffe, her Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in the City of New York and her PhD in Religion from Princeton University. Her research interests include religious history in the United States, particularly independent African American Christianity and Pentecostal studies.  
Camarda Rev. Bonnie Camarda has served as Director of Partnerships for the Salvation Army of Eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware since 1999, as a tireless advocate for the underserved. Rev. Camarda co-chaired Mayor Nutter's Faith Leaders Advisory Task Force for Community Safety with the goal of maximizing the neighborhoods' spiritual assets, social capital and civic values. She is a non-violent activist encouraging mutual trust and respect through amnesty programs that provide musical instruments to Philadelphia schools for weapons turned in to authorities. An avid supporter of education, Rev. Camarda serves as Moderator for the Faith and Community Partnerships of the School District of Philadelphia. She is also the past president of the Hispanic Clergy of Philadelphia, which she helped co-found. 
Asia Coney Asia Coney is one of two Resident Commissioners who were elected in April of 2014 by PHA residents, pursuant to a process created under the Pennsylvania Housing Authorities Law, Act 130.  Commissioner Coney is the President of PHA's Resident Advisory Board. A Philadelphia native, her dedicated community activism over the last thirty-six years has included: advocating for public and assisted housing safety, greater resident input into PHA decision-making, and improvement of existing public housing conditions; conducting local and national workshops; ensuring compliance with federal and state directives regarding the quality of resident life; and working closely with PHA in its creation and implementation of resident programs.  She has served on numerous City Boards, including the Redevelopment Authority and the Malt and Beverage Board, and was the Director of Tenant Support Services, Inc., which terminated operations in 2012. Her community activism has included the following marches: being one of two Chairs for the 1997 historic Million Woman March; Chair of the "Sistahs of the Million Woman March" in 2007; and serving as a key organizer of the 1997 Grays Ferry March, to reduce violence and race riots. 
Danzy Julia Danzy has extensive administrative experience in the area of Social Services, especially child welfare. She has served as the City of Philadelphia's Director of Social Services; Deputy Commissioner of Health; and Operations Director for the Department of Human Services; as well as serving as Deputy Secretary of the Office of Children, Youth and Families, in the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare. Her work has included oversight of the creation of a large urban area's integrated data system for all its departments of Human Services, Prisons, and Behavioral Health, which was responsible for the city's homeless housing services, and has worked as a human services consultant, with a focus on spanning area of organizational design, integrated data systems, and program design. She is known as a tireless advocate for children and families and a proven leader in innovative use of human service systems. Commissioner Danzy earned a B.A. at Howard University, an MSW at Columbia University, and a Masters of Government Administration at the University of Pennsylvania. She has published articles on child welfare, made speaking appearances nationwide, served as the President of Black Administrators in Child Welfare, and is an Ex-Officio Board member of the Women's Opportunities Resource Center.
Fred Frederick S. Purnell, Sr. is the Deputy Director for Housing and Community Development for the City of Philadelphia.  As the City's Deputy Director for Housing and Community Development, he oversees, reviews, and implements housing policy and strategy across the various housing and housing support/community development agencies throughout the City. Before joining the City, Mr. Purnell served as the Executive Director of Wilmington Housing Authority for 16 years. He was also a key executive and a long time employee within the Philadelphia Housing Authority for several years.  He has been instrumental in several multimillion dollar mixed income and low income developments, and is a recognized leader in community development in this region. Mr. Purnell is a native of Philadelphia and a graduate of Central High School and Pennsylvania State University. He has received several certifications, commendations, and board appointments relevant to housing and community development, and is a proud life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.  He is also a licensed realtor in the state of Delaware and resides in the Overbrook section of Philadelphia.

Ethel Wise is one of two Resident Commissioners who were elected in April of 2014 by PHA residents, pursuant to a process created under the Pennsylvania Housing Authorities Law, Act 130. Commissioner Wise is President of the Wilson Park Family Resident Council, a native of Philadelphia and has a personal history of involvement, community engagement and commitment to bettering the lives of those in public housing for over 40 years. As President of the PHA housing development at Martin Luther King for approximately 32 years, Commissioner Wise developed an effective job bank, a food bank and a town watch program that was recognized as one of the best in the country, and, in 1993, she received the Mayor's Community Service Award. Commissioner Wise also created and managed PHA's Lobby Monitor Program, which promoted resident safety and resident employment with a well-defined career path. She has been a leader in providing national and local training for Resident Councils on HUD regulations and also has served as a Democratic Party Committeewoman for the last 25 years.


Patrick J. Eiding is currently serving his 6th term as President of the Philadelphia Council AFL-CIO representing over 150,000 working families and 100 local unions in the Philadelphia area.  Prior to first being elected President of the Council in January 2002, Eiding served for over 25 years as Business Manager and Financial Secretary of the Insulators and Asbestos Workers Local 14, covering Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey. Eiding has risen through the ranks of leadership throughout his career and currently serves as Secretary-Treasurer of the Philadelphia Building Trades Council; as a member of the Executive Council of the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO; and on the General Board of the National AFL-CIO representing Central Labor Councils in the Northeast.  Eiding also represents the interests of working families by serving as an active member of numerous boards and commissions including the Philadelphia Area Labor Management Committee (PALM), the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, the Urban Affairs Coalition (UAC), the Philadelphia Works, Inc., and the Pennsylvania Workforce Development Board.  He has also served as a Commissioner on the Philadelphia City Planning Commission for the past 14 years.


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