HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge Announces Resignation

Marcia L. Fudge, the 18th Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced her resignation as head of the Department, effective March 22, 2024.

“As a dedicated public servant for nearly five decades, I have been devoted to improving the quality of life for the people of this nation, focusing on those with the greatest need,” said Fudge in a statement. “Having worked at every level of government, including as a mayor, then as a congressional staffer, a member of Congress, and now as the 18th Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development I have worked tirelessly to ensure that America lives up to its promise of liberty and justice for all.”

As President-Elect, Joe Biden nominated Fudge as Secretary of HUD on December 10, 2020. The U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs advanced her nomination by a vote of 17-7 on February 4, 2021, and she was confirmed by the Senate as HUD Secretary on March 10, 2021, by a vote of 66-34. She was virtually sworn in by Vice President Kamala Harris on March 10, 2021, becoming the second African-American woman to serve as HUD Secretary.

Dedidated to equitable housing

Secretary Fudge served as U.S. Representative for the 11th Congressional District of Ohio from 2008 to March 9, 2021. She was a member of several Congressional Caucuses and past Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus. As a Member of Congress, Secretary Fudge earned a reputation of tackling the unique challenges of her district by working with her Congressional delegation and across political ideologies.

In 1999, Secretary Fudge was elected the first female and first African American mayor of Warrensville Heights, Ohio, a position she held for two terms. As mayor of Warrensville Heights, Ohio, she adopted one of the first vacant and abandoned property ordinances in the state. She worked with local officials to develop a taskforce to protect against predatory lending and she secured the inclusion of property maintenance grants in the Warrensville Revitalization Action Plan. Additionally, she brought new residential development to the city and addressed the city’s growing foreclosure crisis through the formation of a local partnership that helped residents maintain the financial security needed to buy or keep a home.

Secretary Fudge’s career in public service began in the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, rising to the rank of Director of Budget and Finance. She earned her bachelor’s degree in business from The Ohio State University and law degree from the Cleveland State University Cleveland-Marshall School of Law. She is a Past National President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and a member of its Greater Cleveland Alumnae Chapter.

“It has always been my belief that government can and should work for the people,” added Fudge. “For the last three years, I have fully embraced HUD’s mission to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. The people HUD serves are those who are often left out and left behind. These are my people. They serve as my motivation for everything we have been able to accomplish.”

Housing highlights benefiting the nation

In a statement prepared for the press, Fudge outlined many of the accomplishments over her tenue as HUD Secretary, including:

  • Having helped more than two million families stay in their homes and avoid foreclosure;
  • Removed barriers for people with student loan debt trying to buy a home with an FHA mortgage;
  • Ensured that positive rental history plays a greater role in determining creditworthiness when trying to obtain a home loan;
  • Outpaced the market by insuring FHA mortgages for three times as many Black borrowers and twice as many Hispanic borrowers based on percentage of volume;
  • Made mortgages more affordable by reducing the mortgage insurance premium for FHA mortgages;
  • Funded more than two million units of public housing and multifamily housing;
  • Spent more than 20% of HUD’s procurement dollars with Black, Brown, and other small, disadvantaged businesses in the last year alone, totaling $500 million;
  • Ensuring that people who have paid their debt to society can get a fair shot at a second chance and have a home;
  • Served or permanently housed more than 1.2 million people experiencing homelessness; and
  • Enforced Fair Housing laws and took a stance against racial bias and discrimination in the appraisal market.

“I thank President Biden for his confidence and trust in me to lead HUD in alignment with the Biden-Harris Administration priorities,” said Fudge. “As I transition to life as a public citizen, I will continue to do the work that I have been called to do.”

Late last week during his 2024 State of the Union Address, President Joe Biden keyed in on a number of housing related initiatives to be led by HUD to ease the burden of affordability nationwide.

Among other goals, President Biden stated that he wants to create a temporary, two-year tax credit that will give homeowners $400 a month to put towards their mortgages when they buy a first home or trade their home in for one with a little more, or less, space as their needs change. The Commander in Chief also announced he is directing federal agencies to eliminate title insurance fee requirements for federally backed refinance loans. He stated this move alone will save the average homeowner $1,000 or more in refinancing fees.

The Biden Administration’s actions will build upon the dozens of commitments outlined in the White House Housing Supply Action Plan released last May, and the Blueprint for a Renters Bill of Rights, released in January of 2023. The Administration recognized that additional actions were necessary to lower housing costs and have called on Congress to make the investments necessary to ensure access to quality and affordable housing for all Americans.

Industry reacts to an era of success

Sandra L. Thompson, Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), said in a statement: “Secretary Marcia Fudge is an outstanding leader who is a strong advocate for affordable, equitable, and sustainable housing opportunities for all Americans. During her tenure as Secretary of HUD, the country faced numerous housing challenges including recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, limited affordable housing supply, and the continuing effects of housing discrimination and homelessness. Secretary Fudge took decisive action to address these and other challenges. Under her leadership, HUD worked to ensure that every American had housing and the ability to live in strong and resilient communities. Her leadership has empowered people to build better futures for themselves and the generations that will follow. The impact of her work on the country’s affordable and often most vulnerable housing cannot be overstated.”

Ed Delgado, AMP, Managing Director of Mortgage Policy Advisors, and Chairman Emeritus of Five Star Global, said, “The mortgage industry owes Secretary Fudge a debt of gratitude for her dedication and service to advancing the housing agenda for the United States.”

Bob Broeksmit, CMB, President of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), said: “MBA thanks Marcia Fudge for being a trusted industry partner and champion of improving affordable homeownership and rental housing opportunities for all Americans during her three-year tenure as HUD Secretary. We commend Secretary Fudge and her staff for their contributions on numerous issues, including working with the industry to ensure struggling borrowers could remain in their homes through COVID-19 forbearance relief and other loss mitigation reforms, making homeownership more affordable by lowering mortgage insurance premiums, increasing multifamily large loan limits for the first time in nearly a decade, and implementing improvements to existing HUD programs to boost single-family and multifamily housing supply. MBA will continue its work with HUD leadership and staff on policies and programs that solve for the supply and affordability challenges of today’s housing market.”

Ginnie Mae President Alanna McCargo commented, “During her time leading HUD, Secretary Fudge has been a fierce advocate and bold voice for affordable, fair housing for every American, and has championed efforts to right past wrongs and ensure that historically underserved communities have access to housing and the opportunity to achieve the American Dream. During my time in the Secretary’s office, she pioneered historic initiatives, has challenged me and the entire team to think big and be bold for the good of the people and this country, enabling groundbreaking work across government to address critical issues related to housing equity, fair housing, and fair lending. Secretary Fudge, has been relentless in her support of Ginnie Mae and fully understands the crucial housing finance role the agency plays in serving low-and moderate-income households, first-time homebuyers, veterans, seniors, tribal, and rural communities. Under her tenure, not only has our portfolio reached historic highs of over $2.54 trillion in outstanding Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS), but in fiscal year 2024, Ginnie Mae has been appropriated the highest annual budget increase in its history. Those resources will go a long way in strengthening our program and the secondary market, further empowering Ginnie Mae’s critical role within HUD as a multiplying force for government mortgage programs.”

National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB) President Courtney Johnson Rose said: “As a champion of racial equity, Secretary Fudge has tirelessly advocated policies to eliminate systemic housing discrimination and reduce the racial wealth gap, a cause also championed by NAREB. I personally thank Secretary Fudge on behalf of the NAREB and the millions of Americans her efforts have impacted. During her tenure, she helped more than two million families stay in their homes and avoid foreclosure, removed barriers for people with student loan debt trying to buy a home with an FHA mortgage, and ensured that positive rental history plays a more significant role in determining creditworthiness when trying to obtain a home loan.”

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, said “As a proud daughter of Ohio, and my Congresswoman for twelve years, Marcia Fudge served Ohioans and families all around the country for decades. She understood that housing is at the center of people’s lives, and she led HUD through a critical period–responding to unprecedented housing challenges during the pandemic, reducing costs for first-time homebuyers, and fighting housing discrimination. Secretary Fudge, congratulations and thank you for your service to Ohio and to the country.”

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Eric C. Peck

Eric C. Peck

Eric C. Peck has 25-plus years’ experience covering the mortgage industry, most recently serving as Editor-in-Chief for National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He graduated from the New York Institute of Technology, where he received his B.A. in Communication Arts/Media. After graduating, he began his professional career with Videography Magazine before landing in the mortgage space. Peck has edited three published books, and has served as Copy Editor for Entrepreneur.com.
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