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Maya Hodari is a resident of the Woodlawn community. In the Spring 2009, she noticed the increase in criminal activity occurring on her block and began her fight to improve safety in her neighborhood. She banned together with neighbors living on various blocks in Woodlawn to pioneer the Woodlawn Neighbors Association (WNA). Together they started off simply as 16 neighbors sharing information by email about criminal incidents on their specific blocks. Today WNA has grown into 300 organized neighbors taking a positive stance to improve Woodlawn for all families. In March 2010, the neighbors association partnered with the Kenwood Pointe Condominium Association to host the first annual Woodlawn Summit and more than 150 neighbors attended at 9am on a rainy Saturday morning.

Professionally, Ms. Hodari is a Development Manager with the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) and has lead redevelopment efforts at numerous CHA Plan for Transformation projects including the Pomeroy Apartments Rehabilitation Program which was included in the White House report “100 Recovery Act Projects that are Changing America.” She has worked for the CHA since 1996, serving in various capacities. In 2001, she was selected as a HUD Public Housing Fellow, participating in a national fellowship program offered by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) and the University of Maryland.

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