Meet the Trainers

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Tiffany Zezula

Deputy Director, Land Use Law Center

Tiffany B. Zezula is the Deputy Director for the Land Use Law Center at Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University in White Plains, NY, and Staff Attorney for the Housing Action Council. She is the primary trainer and national coordinator for the Center’s award-winning Land Use Leadership Alliance Training program for local officials, environmentalists, planners, and developers. The Training Program has been modeled and transferred to more than six states and has been tailored to tactical numerous land use issues, including fair and affordable housing. The program has trained over 3,000 leaders in the Hudson Valley Region alone, including over 350 leaders in the Hudson Valley on the specific topic of fair and affordable housing. 

Prof. Zezula also provides strategic assistance to local governments on comprehensive planning, revitalization strategies, land use, and the formation of affordable housing committees. Her work includes developing public engagement strategies and conducting feasibility analyses on town center developments. She conducts assessments and audits for municipalities in sustainable development, resiliency, state certification programs, and streamlining development processes. Prof. Zezula also provides strategic assistance to local governments, including assistance in developing comprehensive planning. She has worked in select communities in the creation of affordable housing committees advocating for affordable housing policy reform and education of citizens to the topic. Prof. Zezula also worked closely with the New York Council of Churches and the Attorney General’s Office supported Mission-Based Housing Partnership to assist religious leaders with the repurposing and revitalization of church and mission-based property into affordable housing.  

Prof. Zezula also works with a variety of planning firms in the region in the development of public engagement outreach and facilitation. All efforts culminate in a final report delivered to the administration regarding the citizen’s vision for future revitalization and cultural and economic services.  

Finally, Prof. Zezula oversees running the Center’s annual conference. The Center’s annual conference is a significant educational event in the region, with more than 250 attorneys, business professionals, planners and local leaders in attendance to learn about national, regional, and local innovations, challenges, and best practices. She also coordinates a yearly affordable housing summit bringing industry leaders, municipal officials, syndicates, and lawyers together to discuss trends and solutions to affordable housing.

Prof. Zezula is a frequent national speaker on collaborative governance and local decision-making.  She is also a frequent guest presenter at the Yale School of Forestry and an adjunct professor at Haub Law on Environmental Dispute Resolution and Sustainable Development Law. She received her JD cum laude from Haub Law in 2003 along with a certificate in Environmental Law.  She is a certified mediator in the State of New York. Prof. Zezula also serves as a Board Member to the United Way of Westchester and Putnam County.

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Jessica Bacher

Jessica A. Bacher is the Executive Director of the Land Use Law Center. Established in 1993, the Land Use Law Center is dedicated to fostering the development of sustainable communities and regions through the promotion of innovative land use strategies and dispute resolution techniques. As the Executive Director, Professor Bacher’s responsibilities include development and implementation of projects relating to local land use practice, energy siting, distressed property remediation, sustainable communities, land use responses to sea level rise, and affordable housing, as well as providing strategic assistance to numerous municipalities. 

Most recently, Professor Bacher led the City of Newburgh, NY, in the development of a distressed property remediation implementation plan that focuses on the development of a land bank. Additionally, she serves as a trainer for the Center’s award-winning Land Use Leadership Alliance Training Program that has educated over 2,500 local leaders in land use strategies, consensus building, and regional stewardship. Professor Bacher also chairs the American Bar Association’s Section of State and Local Government Law. At Haub Law, Professor Bacher serves as an Adjunct Professor, teaching Land Use Law, Sustainable Development Survey, and the Advanced Land Use and Sustainable Development Seminar. 

Professor Bacher also administers the Center’s academic programs and guides student research. In addition, she is a Lecturer and project supervisor at Yale School of the Environment, where she manages the school’s Land Use Clinic. She authors regular land use features in New York and national publications and has edited numerous small books in the fields of Land Use and Real Estate Law, including Breaking Ground and Planning and Building in Priority Growth Districts. She also presents at regional and national conferences and served on the New York State Climate Action Plan Land Use and Local Government Working Group, Climate Smart Communities Standards Committee, Master Plan for Aging Task Force, and the Sea Level Rise Task Force Legal Work Group. Professor Bacher was selected by the American Bar Association to receive the Jefferson B. Fordham Award, an award presented to a young practitioner who has shown great promise through her contributions to the field. Professor Bacher received her JD summa cum laude from Haub Law in 2003, along with a certificate in Environmental Law.

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Rose Noonan

Executive Director, Housing Action Council

Ms. Noonan has held the position of Executive Director since 1986 and has been with the Council since 1979. She began her housing career as Director of the National Leased Housing Association, the leading trade association for government assisted rental housing development and management located in Washington, DC. She has held program and policy positions at the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development and the New York State Division of Housing & Community Renewal. She attended Trinity College in Washington, DC, received an advanced degree in Government from Georgetown University, and is a graduate of Pace University School of Law.

Ms. Noonan has developed various programs which have assisted in the development of housing, including tax-exempt financing, mortgage insurance, and housing rehabilitation programs. She has advised State and local housing officials on designing and implementing affordable housing programs and plans. She manages the Yonkers Affordable Housing Office which is responsible for implementing a housing desegregation order. She has designed housing seminars and trained professionals nationwide. She is experienced in integrating the housing development process with health and human service programs.

She has fostered the creation of several Westchester not-for-profit organizations, e.g. The Preservation Company, Washingtonville Housing Alliance, and the New Rochelle Neighborhood Revitalization Corporation. The goal of these organizations is the development of housing which serves low income families and individuals of modest means. She has advised many civic groups, religious groups, and community organizations on appropriate roles for themselves in housing development and assisted them through the development process. Her services are primarily focused in the Hudson Region; however she has provided this service throughout New York State and in many areas throughout the country. She has a strong working knowledge of Federal, State, County and local housing programs and is skilled in integrating them to develop financially feasible and affordable housing developments.

She is the author of over a dozen guidebooks and manuals on housing programs and developing housing.