Dear Friends and Neighbors:
On May 7, 1953, the Portsmouth Housing Authority was born. Today, as we celebrate our 70th year in service to Portsmouth, we proudly reflect on our history serving thousands of families, seniors, and people with disabilities. Over the years, we have adapted to dramatic changes to our built environment, community priorities, economic cycles, and new technologies to become a dynamic, high-performing organization Portsmouth can be proud of. Through all of our trials and success, spanning 22 Mayors, 17 Governors, and 14 Presidents, we stayed true to our core values, assuring the security, dignity and opportunity that comes with having a place to call home.
Today, our work is more important than ever. Families and seniors in our community are experiencing housing instability. Increased pressure on social services is compromising the good health and well-being of our most vulnerable neighbors. The impact of climate change is furthering inequities. And of course, skyrocketing rents are threatening the quality, diversity, and vibrancy of our community.
By every measure, Portsmouth needs to increase the supply of quality, accessible, sustainable, affordable housing, and this should be done with urgency. A recent statewide poll cites the lack of affordable housing as the #1 issue facing our state. The 2022 Portsmouth Housing Market Study shows that Portsmouth can support more than 1,500 new affordable housing units by the end of this decade. Our new Ruth Lewin Griffin Place workforce housing apartments saw over 500 people apply, and 280 remain on the waitlist today. Ample evidence confirms we have under-built affordable housing for decades, and we need to correct this course.
The great news is that today, attitudes towards building more affordable housing has shifted in a positive direction as more and more people see first hand the consequences of housing scarcity and many recognize the moral imperative to correct this problem. At the same time, the PHA is stronger than ever. We are not unfamiliar with adversity and we are poised to tackle these challenges and opportunities for years to come.
My wife Stefany and I are eternally grateful to be a part of the Portsmouth community, and to have raised our family here. We are joined by all of our Commissioners, Directors, staff, partners, and friends in our commitment to assure that others, in all walks of life, also have the opportunity to live here in the best small city in America, Portsmouth, NH, USA.
Breaking the "toxic-stress" homelessness cycle starts at birth | Craig Welch | TEDxPortsmouth
Generational poverty and homelessness can be prevented when caring adults protect kids from toxic stress. Portsmouth Housing Authority Director Craig Welch asks us to rethink how our communities care for our very youngest children.
Board of Commissioners – Portsmouth Housing Authority
The Portsmouth Housing Authority is administered by a six-member Board of Commissioners who are appointed by the Mayor of the City of Portsmouth and ratified by the Portsmouth City Council. They serve staggered five-year terms and can be reappointed for additional five-year terms.
Current Portsmouth Housing Authority Commissioners:
Board of Commissioners Meeting Schedule
The Board of Commissioners Meeting is open to the public and takes place on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at 2pm, unless otherwise noted on the City Meetings page.
*NOTE: The December 2023 meeting will be held on Wednesday December 6 at 2pm, to accommodate a public hearing for the PHA's Moving to Work (MTW) application.
The meeting place is the Commissioner's Conference Room in our main office building at 245 Middle Street in Portsmouth, unless otherwise noted on the posted agenda.
Agendas and Minutes are posted on the City of Portsmouth’s website:
- (Select the "Filter By Board" drop-down box on the right and choose "Portsmouth Housing Authority." Choose the intended date range and hit "Apply.")
PHA Board of Directors - PHA Housing Development, Ltd.
The Portsmouth Housing Authority also has an affiliate non-profit organization called the PHA Housing Development, Ltd., which develops new housing. The Board is comprised of six members; two from the Portsmouth Housing Authority and four members appointed at-large. The Portsmouth Housing Authority assigns its two members to this Board and the other four members are recommended by the PHA Housing Development, Ltd Board and approved by the Portsmouth Housing Authority Board of Commissioners. Both Boards are affiliated but operate independently.
Current PHA Housing Development, Ltd. Directors: