Art Casavant joined the CATCH Neighborhood Housing Board of Directors in September of 2013. As both a board member and First Vice President and Community Development Officer at People’s United Bank, Art has continuously provided helpful insight and professional guidance to CATCH and its subsidiaries. He has worked in the banking industry for many years and has significant experience with the Community Reinvestment Act, which makes him an excellent board member and key contact in People’s investments in some of CATCH’s housing developments and programs.
“People's United Bank has a community development program that focuses on serving its communities through an integrated model that includes lending, investing, banking services, philanthropic support, community engagement and board leadership,” says Art. “Whenever possible, we like to work with community development change agents with whom we can do all six of these things, and working with CATCH is a great example of how we work with an entity to support low- and moderate- income communities.”
People's United Bank directly supports CATCH in many ways; People’s is an investor in housing through a tax-credit syndicator, they contribute through their Foundation (PUFI) and they serve actively on CATCH’s board. Through its staff, People’s also works in collaboration with CATCH to understand market dynamics for housing and support services, and they are always sharing their knowledge from similar activities with other organizations and in other states.
Most housing development and rehabilitation requires extensive thought, complex funding and a focus on the needs of the community, impact on the area where housing is provided, and careful financial planning. No two deals are the same but crucial principles can be reapplied and People’s is always striving to do more. The interplay of organizations like CATCH with state and federal agencies is a crucial part of both policy and funding options. We jointly benefit from the role of supporters like NH Housing Finance and are engaged with policy setting agencies at the state and federal level. This helps us all to be better educated and allows us to work with housing providers, banking regulators and our communities.
“We are pleased to serve on CATCH’s board, and we have been pleased to see its leadership and creative approach to meeting housing and community development needs,” says Art. “It is important that there be thought leadership, capital investment and supportive services and CATCH does all three of these things. Housing is the bottom line and the key goal for CATCH and we are thrilled to work with Rosemary and the entire CATCH team!”