Ashon Nesbitt will step in as CEO of the state’s top housing nonprofit at the start of the new year.
Nesbitt will take over the Florida Housing Coalition from retiring longtime President and CEO Jaimie Ross beginning Jan. 1. Nesbitt currently serves as the organization’s chief programs officer and technical advisor.
“It’s exciting to be a part of the Coalition’s next chapter, and I look forward to working with our talented Board and staff as we further build successful strategies and champion housing affordability best practices,” Nesbitt said in a statement Monday.
The new CEO will take over at a time when rising home prices and an influx of new residents in post-pandemic Florida has exacerbated the affordable housing crunch across the Sunshine State.
“There is no doubt, we are in a housing affordability crisis in Florida,” Nesbitt said. “We need to work together closely with our statewide members and our Partners for Better Housing to implement strategies which will strengthen Florida’s affordable housing production and preservation.”
The Florida Housing Coalition Board unanimously chose Nesbitt after interviewing six candidates from a pool of 300 applicants after Ross, in June, announced her plan to retire.
“Speaking on behalf of our entire board, I could not be more pleased that Ashon will be the new head of the Coalition,” said Suzanne Cabrera, Chair of the Coalition Board. “His extensive experience in housing financing and development, his vision and professionalism and his championship of all our major initiatives make him the best choice.”
Since joining the Florida Housing Coalition, Nesbitt has led the Community Land Trust Institute and the Center for Racial Equity. Before joining the group, he was a project manager for affordable multifamily housing developer Blue Sky Communities in Tampa, an asset manager and underwriter for Raymond James Tax Credit Funds and managed Alachua County’s SHIP Down Payment Assistance Program.
“Ashon is known for building partnerships across public and private, for-profit and nonprofit sectors — he has the right combination of leadership skills, policy expertise, and commitment to affordable housing to lead the Coalition,” Cabrera added.
Nesbitt has master’s degrees in urban and regional planning and in real estate from the University of Florida. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in architectural studies from Florida A&M University.