FHJC Announces New Investigative Program Hires

Photo © by Bernard Kleina

February 17, 2022

INVESTIGATIVE STAFF NOW LARGEST IN FHJC HISTORY

The Fair Housing Justice Center (FHJC) is pleased to announce the return of Shaye Belcon as its new National Projects and Investigations Coordinator.

Ms. Belcon first entered the fair housing field in 2013, managing U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) programs at the Fair Housing Contact Service in Akron, OH. She joined FHJC in 2016 and was eventually promoted to Senior Investigative Coordinator before returning to Ohio where she oversaw a federal grant from the Office on Violence Against Women at a local university.

In her new role, Belcon will join National Field Director and former Executive Director Fred Freiberg, working on investigative projects beyond FHJC’s New York metro region service area, with a special focus on lender testing.

FHJC is also pleased to welcome its newest Investigative Coordinator Gabrielle Vera. Prior to joining FHJC, Ms. Vera was a pathways trainee in the Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity division of HUD. She has also interned and worked with the NJ State Legislature and NJ Essex County Prosecutors Office, and is currently pursuing a Master of Arts degree in Human Rights Studies at Columbia University.

Vera and Belcon join an expanded FHJC investigations staff which includes Freiberg, Investigative Coordinators Andrea Hayward, Frank Oleszko, and Chip Underwood, Evidence Technician Robert Gomes, and Director of Investigations Alaine Dungee.

“The entire team is looking forward to having Gabrielle join us, and we’re thrilled to be working closely again with our longtime colleague Shaye,” said Dungee.

“With a regular staff of eight, and a pool of over 170 part-time testers in our Acting for Justice program, FHJC’s investigations program is uniquely positioned to tackle unlawful housing discrimination in the New York region and beyond, especially during this exceptionally tight housing market,” stated FHJC Executive Director Elizabeth Grossman. “Landlords, real estate agents, lenders, developers, and others who might see current market conditions as an opportunity to cut corners on fair housing laws – be warned. Our team is out there, rooting out hidden discrimination and bringing violators to justice.”

The mission of the FHJC, a nonprofit civil rights organization, is to eliminate housing discrimination; promote policies and programs that foster open, accessible, and inclusive communities; and strengthen enforcement of fair housing laws in the New York City region.