More than a mantra! We, Too, Believe A Home Is A Right is the spark of a movement and manifestation of homes for underserved and under-housed veteran families. AHARI is a 501c3 non-profit supporting veterans founded in 2011 by Stephanie Booker, a veteran widow, as she was earning her master’s degree at Eastern University. Once homeless and battling chemical dependencies and depression, she understands the plight and needs of the community AHARI serves. Therefore, AHARI provides holistic programming that not only helps veterans survive but thrive as part of healthy families and communities—in not only houses, but real homes. NOW, MEET OUR AWESOME DEVELOPMENT TEAM..
She began learning by trial and error with inheritance funds, but then she took construction management courses and JumpStart Training to get a better understanding of the rehab process. During her training, and as a Co-Chair of the AFT Local 2026 at Community College of Philadelphia, she worked with contractors that are experts in their respective fields. As a property investor and manager, Stephanie was able to put one daughter through Spelman College and support her other daughter who is currently attending NC Aggie while still providing safe affordable housing to her Veterans.
Being a 47-year resident and native of University City in Philadelphia, Stephanie has experienced the direct impact of the gentrification including racism from her current neighbors who are unaware of the history of the community.
Stephanie believes veterans and their families deserve a permanent supportive home, not just transitional housing. Most transitional housing systems are broken, and our veterans deserve better. Therefore, AHARI is structured to:
Jacquelyn J. Sims
Jacquelyn J. Sims, President of The Maple Corporation, is a finance and real estate professional with more than 20 years’ experience. She has worked in banking, wealth management and home mortgage financing. She has used her expertise to help underserved populations throughout the greater Philadelphia in the areas of money management, credit repair, and personal financing. Maple is a minority-led non-profit focused on affordable housing preservation. The firm provides real estate development planning, feasibility studies, site analysis, acquisition assistance and financial packaging services.
Jacquie is a Steering Committee Member of Women in Housing & Finance PA, Secretary of the Commonwealth Housing Development Corporation Board, a member of The African American Chamber of Commerce, and Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporation. Jacquie holds a Certificate in Rental Housing Development Finance
Sonya T. Nickerson
Sonya T. Nickerson serves as Assistant Project Manager for The Maple Corporation. Ms. Nickerson has ten years of affordable housing property management experience with five years in housing development and is a certified Assisted Housing Manager. She takes leadership in assisting clients with government funding applications, creating and issuing Requests for Proposals (RFPs), professional proposals and driving the development process.
Sonya has experience in producing commercial and residential rent comps, project feasibility studies, construction cost breakouts, rehabilitation scopes, development budgets and operating pro-formas. Sonya has successfully completed Real Estate Practice and Project Management courses.
Dennis Garrett is an accomplished operating executive with a demonstrated ability to deliver mission-critical results. He has successfully managed operational support services and project activities in high-risk environments for the builders and operators of power, renewable energy, clean energy, communications, heavy civil, and oil & gas infrastructure projects. A Columbia University textbook: Operations Management by Professor Martin K. Starr profiled Mr. Garrett.
He has successfully managed more than 150 million dollars of energy infrastructure projects. The projects were for clients including ConEdison, The New York Power Authority, Delmarva Power, Baltimore Gas & Electric, Philadelphia Gas Works, The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, EQT, Dresser-Rand Co-Generation, Eco-Battery, Gilston Electric, and NERemsco Transformers.
Mr. Garrett’s firms have worked on numerous major infrastructure projects, including the reconstruction of One World Trade Center and of the PATH Transit HUB at the Lower Manhattan site destroyed on 9/11. Additional significant projects including the 86th Street /2nd Ave Subway in New York, The New York LaGuardia Airport New Terminal B construction, and the Blue Plains Water Project in Washington, DC.
In the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Dennis served as a commissioned officer and platoon leader of a combat engineer company. Later, he held management positions in such companies as Computer Science Corporation, Amtrak, Cintas Corporation, and Federal Express.
He is currently a member of The Eastern Minority Supplier Development Council Board of Directors and the EMSDC Energy Industry Group, The Houston Minority Supplier Development Council MBEI Committee, The American Association of Blacks in Energy, Clean Energy for America, the Clean Energy Business Network, the International Solar Society, The Microgrid Group, and the Equity in a Clean Energy Economy Collaborative. Mr. Garrett is also a member of the inaugural class of the Exelon Foundation Program for Minority Entrepreneurs in the Clean Energy Industry.
Ivano D'Angella is the Principal/Architect/Builder/Developer of ID’A. DESIGN/BUILD LLC which focuses on single and multi-family, commercial, retail, professional office, developer/design/build, expert testimony. He also served as President, Business manager and lead architect of an eleven-person architecture design Firm.
Ivano is an Adjunct Associate Professor, Architecture at Thomas Jefferson University and an alumnus of Temple University with a Bachelor of Architecture, Architecture & Engineering Program. He has achieved a Thomas Jefferson University Award for Outstanding Adjunct Teaching, and authored numerous publications such as Housing Haiti’s Homeless, Pet Project, Duchamp and Architecture, Typology and its Process in Design