Hacobian, Urban Edge president, to step down

September 10, 2010
By

David Taber


Photo by Rodrigo Blanco Chrystal Kornegay (left) will assume the consolidated position of president and CEO of Urban Edge when President Mossik Hacobian (right) steps down at the end of this year, the local community development corporation’s board of directors announced last week.

Long-time Urban Edge leader Mossik Hacobian will step down as president of the community development corporation effective Dec. 31, Urban Edge announced last week.

Chrystal Kornegay, who has served as Urban Edge’s CEO since 2008, splitting leadership responsibilities with Hacobian during “a three-year transition period,” will “assume the consolidated position of president and CEO of the Urban Edge.”

Hacobian started at Urban Edge in 1977 and served as the organization’s executive director between 1988 and 2008.

While his long tenure has been controversial at times, a Sept. 2 press release announcing the transition contains scores of comments praising Hacobian, including from Boston Mayor Thomas Menino.

“Mossik’s dedication will be sorely missed,” Menino said in the press release, ”Mossik creates affordable housing. He just makes it happen—even in difficult times.”

Urban Edge’s real estate portfolio includes over 1,300 units of affordable housing in Jamaica Plain and surrounding communities.

In a Gazette interview, Hacobian told the Gazette he plans to continue to work to support Urban Edge, particularly on the effort to secure funds for an active recreational facility—proposed to include an ice rink—in Jackson Square.

The Gazette originally reported on the Urban Edge transition plans in June. Hacobian reiterated in the recent interview that he expects to stay active in non-profit affordable housing and community oriented development. “All of the things Urban Edge has been committed to are important to me,” he said. “I am definitely not retiring.”

Kornegay has worked for Urban Edge for 11 years, serving as director of real estate development until 2008—and as executive director for three months in 2005 when Hacobian was on sabbatical. She has overseen “more than $50 million in development—more than 500 housing units and 20,000 square feet of commercial and program space,” according to the press release.