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Sandra Espadas to Serve as Senior Director of Community Development

By Steve Lambert
Community Writer
08/30/2016 at 04:41 PM

SAN BERNARDINO >> Sandra Espadas, former Regional Director for the Institute for Public Strategies in San Bernardino County, has been hired as Senior Director of Community Development for the Hope through Housing Foundation, focusing primarily on the Arrowhead Grove Neighborhood Revitalization project. Espadas spent nine years at the Institute, overseeing multiple projects aimed at improving the quality of life for residents in Victorville, Barstow, Redlands and San Bernardino. During that time, she implemented evidence-based strategies to address substance abuse and crime, secured more than $2 million in grant funding and worked with community stakeholders and partners to develop neighborhood revitalization plans. Her responsibilities at Hope through Housing will include coordination of community development efforts for Arrowhead Grove, a transformational master-planned community in San Bernardino. Formerly known as Waterman Gardens, Arrowhead Grove will consist of 411 new housing units, recreational amenities, upgraded infrastructure and an Education Village. The redevelopment effort is being led by Hope through Housing’s partner, National Community Renaissance, one of the nation’s largest nonprofit community builders. “We’re excited to have Sandra join our leadership team and lead our efforts at Arrowhead Grove,” said Ciriaco “Cid” Pinedo, President of Hope through Housing. “Her work with the Institute for Public Strategies is very much in line with our mission of transforming lives and communities. There’s no better example of that than the work begin done at Arrowhead Grove.” Arrowhead Grove will spur significant economic benefits for the city as a whole. A 2014 study by the Center for Economic Research and Forecasting concluded that construction activities alone will increase economic output in San Bernardino County by $81.1 million, support 1,032 jobs and pay about $46.8 million in labor income to county residents. Long term, Arrowhead Grove will generate millions of dollars a year in tax revenues to support vital services. Work is underway for the first on-site phase, Olive Meadow. Immediately to the south, the first off-site phase, Valencia Vista, is about to open, with 75 affordable units. Valencia Vista includes a 2,200-square-foot community center, after school program facilities, a computer lab, children’s play area, swimming pool and outdoor gathering spaces. In addition to her roles with the Institute, Espadas is former Director of Community Programs for Day One Inc. and was Human Relations Specialist for the Orange County Human Relations Commission. “National CORE’s history of revitalizing communities, engaging stakeholders and transforming lives is an ideal fit for San Bernardino and the Arrowhead Grove neighborhood,” Espadas said. “I look forward to being part of this once-in-a-lifetime project.”