Darren leads Smith & Henzy’s Southeast and Midwest operations in all aspects of development. With over 30 Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) developments in Florida, Darren has grown Smith & Henzy to one of the top affordable housing development firms in the State. Since the inception of Smith & Henzy in 2014, he has led the financing and development of $1.6 billion of housing, with over 1,800 units currently in the portfolio and another 1,800 in development in Florida.
Under Darren’s direction, the Smith & Henzy Florida office, currently closes 6-8 transactions per year and is known for expeditiously executing complex financial structures that involve financing through a diversity of programs, such as 9% LIHTC for new construction, preservation and supportive housing, various forms of subordinate debt financing from the State of Florida and other Florida municipalities, HUD’s Section 18, Section 22, and RAD programs, and Freddie/Fannie tax credit financing. The Smith & Henzy Florida office focuses on development and ownership opportunities, often working to bring its nonprofits and Public Housing Authority partners’ development visions to life.
Darren grew up in public housing and therefore, is particularly committed to the redevelopment and preservation of public housing sites across the United States. His firsthand experience living in affordable housing fuels his drive to redevelop the most blighted communities and provide quality affordable housing to the families who need it most.
Darren’s experience reaches beyond Florida, as he has closed over $2 billion of 9%, 4%, 80/20 and Freddie/Fannie tax credit financing in New York, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Florida, Texas and California as a banker at Citibank. Prior to starting Smith & Henzy, Darren worked in Citi’s Municipal Securities division and specialized in community reinvestment related business. Darren holds a bachelor’s degree in Finance & Investment from Baruch College and is currently trustee member for the Baruch College Fund.
Tim leads the Northeast operations for Smith & Henzy development and consulting practices. Under his leadership the firm has created and preserved 6,000 units of affordable housing in New York and Florida totaling over $1.6 billion in development costs.
The New York office is active in both development and consulting and closes 4-6 transactions per year with the New York State Homes and Community Renewal and New York State Housing Finance Agency. Work with these agencies has included 4% and 9% Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to finance the preservation of State Assisted Mitchell Lama properties, year 15 restructurings, Public Housing Authority redevelopment using RAD and Section 18, and new construction projects focused on supportive housing and energy efficiency.
Smith & Henzy was selected by the State in 2019 to develop 160 apartments in East Brooklyn under the Governor’s Vital Brooklyn Initiative. The project is the first project to be completed under the initiative and includes Passive House Certification and 36 supportive apartments for person with developmental disabilities and children aging out of foster care.
Tim has worked as consultant to multiple for-profit and not-for-profit entities. The firm was recently recognized along with our client, People Inc, for their work on the Jefferson House Apartments in Buffalo. The project received the New York State Association for Affordable Housing’s Update Project of the Year for 2021.
Tim’s career in affordable housing began in municipal government in Massachusetts in 1994. Since 1998 Tim has held positions with development firms working in the New York affordable housing industry as well as worked for a low-income housing tax syndicator overseeing projects in New York, Ohio, Nevada and Wisconsin. Tim holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Providence College and a Master of Regional Planning degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Jake identifies new sites, underwrites and analyzes various financial structures, and directs projects from inception through conversion of permanent financing. Jake joined Smith and Henzy in 2022 to grow the company’s footprint and add value through development best practices. Prior to joining Smith & Henzy, Jake was a Senior Vice President of Development for Housing Trust Group. While in this role, he oversaw the creation of over 1,000 units of new construction affordable housing and spearheaded the company’s expansion into Illinois. Jake holds a bachelor’s degree in History and Education from the University of Michigan and is a graduate from University of South Florida’s Community Real Estate Development program.
Erin procures new partnerships, identifies an ideal development strategy, and secures the necessary competitive financing for each opportunity. Erin has been instrumental in Smith & Henzy’s explosive growth in Florida and new presence in the Midwest. In 2020 alone, Erin led the Smith & Henzy team in winning four 9% tax credit awards and one subordinate debt award from Florida Housing Finance Corporation. These five projects total over 450 units, $100 million in development costs, and new and/or improved homes for hundreds of low-income households for many years to come. Prior to joining Smith & Henzy, Erin managed the development of affordable and permanent supportive housing for a California-based nonprofit. Erin holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from UCLA.
Rick manages projects from conception through underwriting to closing and construction commencement. Since starting with Smith & Henzy in 2018, Rick has been actively involved in closing over 20 developments that total over 1,500 affordable housing units and $500 million in development costs. Prior to joining Smith & Henzy, Rick worked at Seltzer Management Group, Inc. (SMG) for 17-years. At SMG, Rick was responsible for affordable housing credit underwriting related to loan and grant requests through Florida Housing Finance Corporation and various county and municipalities throughout Florida. Rick was responsible for validating applicant compliance with all applicable loan and grant requirements of State Apartment Initiative Loans, HOME funds, Low Income Housing Tax Credit allocations, Multifamily Revenue Bond programs, and other financing programs offered through the State’s request for application process. Rick holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from King’s College.
John joined the firm in 2022 and works on the Northeast team managing all aspects of the firm’s practices. The New York office is active in both development and consulting closing four to six transactions per year with the New York State Homes and Community Renewal and New York State Housing Finance Agency. Work with these agencies has included 4% and 9% Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to finance the preservation of State Assisted Mitchell Lama properties, year 15 restructurings, Public Housing Authority redevelopment using RAD and Section 18, and new construction projects focused on supportive housing and energy efficiency.
John joined Smith & Henzy from Bank of America’s Community Development Banking group where he spent 7 years working with clients primarily throughout New York and New Jersey to provide financing for affordable housing projects including new construction, acquisition/rehab, RAD, and supportive housing among others. John was responsible for executing construction debt, LIHTC, State Low Income Housing Credits, Historic Tax Credits, and Brownfield credits totaling $390 million in debt and $308 million in equity for nearly 2,000 units while at the bank.
John holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Seton Hall University graduating Cum Laude.
Celia manages the operations of Smith & Henzy’s Florida office. She leads projects from construction commencement to permanent financing and on to stabilized operations. Celia played a pivotal role in growing Smith & Henzy’s execution phase capacity, developing new processes and standardizing existing ones to efficiently move projects through construction, development, and financial milestones. Over the past three years, Celia and her team have placed over 1,400 units of affordable housing in service, with a combined development cost of over $250 million. Currently, Celia is moving 1,100 additional units with development costs of approximately $250 million through various stages of construction. Prior to joining Smith & Henzy, Celia worked in development in The Michaels Organization’s Atlanta office, specializing in LIHTC and PHA redevelopment in the Southeast. Celia holds a bachelor’s degree in Multidisciplinary Studies in Theatre and Film from the University of Oklahoma.
Matt works upfront with Smith & Henzy’s architectural and engineering teams to refine project site plans and designs and oversees construction to ensure each development is highly cost effective, energy efficient, and sustainable. Since joining Smith & Henzy in early 2022, Matt has been instrumental in successfully identifying cost saving opportunities in the face of construction cost escalations, which has enabled four deals to close and begin construction on time and within budget. He is currently overseeing construction activities on nine projects that total nearly 1,000 units and are in a variety of stages of development. Prior to joining Smith & Henzy, Matt worked for 15-years for a General Contractor in South Florida that specializes in building multi-family projects. Matt became a Certified General Contractor in March of 2022.
Mike manages projects from origination to achievement of stabilized operations. He assists in the submission financing applications, coordinates due diligence items during underwriting, submits monthly construction requisitions to financial partners during construction, and works directly with nonprofit and public housing authority partners to reposition their existing assets and provide quality affordable housing to Florida’s low-income individuals and families. Prior to joining Smith & Henzy, Mike worked for a development firm in New York, assisting with project planning for the renovation and Rental Assistance Demonstration (“RAD”) of a 1,088-unit New York City Housing Authority project in the Bronx. Mike holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the College of Charleston and a master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Florida Atlantic University.
Troy primarily manages Smith & Henzy’s existing deal pipeline. He assists with sourcing new acquisition or consulting opportunities, procurement submissions, underwriting analysis, due diligence, and coordination with local and state agencies. Originally from Louisiana, Troy has roots in the Southeast where he has built long-lasting relationships with real estate professionals across his region, as well as several other states across the country.
Since graduating in 2014 with a bachelor's degree from Louisiana State University, Troy has worked in the real estate industry with roles varying from broker, leasing agent, to development professional. Troy has spent most of his time focusing primarily on procuring land for new construction multifamily development, both affordable LIHTC and conventional market-rate communities.
After a few years as a broker working on a commission-only basis initially Troy later joined a Baton Rouge Based apartment developer, CST Land Developers as a Development Associates tasked with sourcing new acquisition opportunities, managing tasks for existing project pipeline, as well as investor relations. During that time, their team completed construction of a 144-unit brand new luxury apartment community in Denham Springs LA - The Palms at Juban Lakes.
Following his tenure with CST, Troy began working at Mayfair Management Group, where he, alongside their principals, started a new development company - Adirondack Community Development. In his role as Director of Acquisitions, Troy focused on site selection, negotiating purchase and sale agreements, assisting consultants with the preparation of LIHTC and other financing application, and coordinating lender and investor due diligence.
Drew assists in all aspects of development, such as coordinating pre-closing due diligence items, processing funding requisitions during construction, and managing resident relocation. Since joining Smith & Henzy in 2021, Drew has developed a special expertise in resident relocation; he has managed three resident in-place rehabilitation projects that required relocating over 300 households. This involved hiring and coordinating moving and cleaning companies, renting storage spaces and off-site apartments to be used as temporary housing, managing utility transfers, and addressing resident concerns throughout the process. Drew holds a bachelor’s degree in Public Policy from the University of Southern California.
Guerby processes approximately $5 million of monthly funding requestions for Smith & Henzy’s affordable housing developments in Florida. He manages all communications related to funding requisitions with Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Citibank, and therefore, plays a vital role in managing Smith & Henzy’s accounts. Guerby is currently a rising senior at Florida Atlantic University, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Accounting.