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Darien's Klein Earns Women's Leadership Award For Affordable Housing Work

Darien resident Evonne M. Klein received the Women and Families Center’s 2016 Connecticut Woman in Leadership Award.
Darien resident Evonne M. Klein received the Women and Families Center’s 2016 Connecticut Woman in Leadership Award. Photo Credit: Contributed

DARIEN, Conn. – State Housing Commissioner Evonne M. Klein of Darien received the Women and Families Center’s 2016 Connecticut Woman in Leadership Award for her work in the areas of affordable housing and transit-oriented development.

The prestigious honor is awarded each year to a Connecticut woman who demonstrates outstanding leadership and serves as a leading agent for positive change in the state of Connecticut.

“The Women and Families Center is truly committed to improving the lives of the residents of Connecticut and I’m honored to receive this award today,” said Klein. “Ensuring access to quality, safe and affordable housing has been DOH’s mission since Governor Malloy created the agency just a few short years ago.

"Working with our partners across the state, like the Women and Families Center, we are achieving nationally recognized results and I know that, together, we will continue to be a leader in our efforts to improve the lives of those we serve.”

The Malloy administration has been responsible for a significant increase in the availability of quality, affordable housing across Connecticut. Since 2011, the state has created, rehabilitated or funded nearly 16,000 units of affordable housing. Klein, a former Darien first selectman who has served as head of the Department of Housing since 2013, has worked to shape dynamic housing policy that promotes diversity, inclusion and change.

Connecticut made history in August 2015 when it became the first state in the nation to end chronic veteran homelessness. Meeting the goals set forth in the Mayor’s Challenge to End Homelessness, Connecticut was also one of only two states to effectively end veteran homelessness in 2015.

The Women and Families Center (WFC) is committed to promoting equity and to improving quality of life through services that foster empowerment and independence. The WFC provides school readiness programming for preschoolers, enriches after school programming with an emphasis on Science, Engineering, Technology and Math (STEM); conducts street outreach and provides short-term shelter services for homeless youth; oversees vocational training and job placement assistance for low-income men, women, and youth; and operates the Rape Crisis Center for Central Connecticut.

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