Meet the Met Council on Housing staff
Ava Farkas - Executive Director
A native of the Bronx, Ava has been a community organizer for over a decade. She worked as the lead organizer on the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition's fight for living wage jobs and community-driven development at the Kingsbridge Armory which blocked Mayor Bloomberg's plan to turn it into a shopping mall. Ava went on to run the Living Wage NYC campaign with the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, which won passage of the Fair Wages for New Yorkers Act, securing a living wage of $13.13 for employees at city-subsidized developments. Prior to joining Met Council on Housing, Ava served as Chief of Staff to Council Member Antonio Reynoso of Williamsburg and Bushwick Brooklyn, co-chair of the City Council Progressive Caucus.
Andrea Shapiro - Program Coordinator
Andrea is a lifelong Brooklynite, who is passionate about building strong and stable communities. She came to the Met Council after being the Volunteer Manager at Hunger Free America. Andrea has previously worked as a field organizer and lobby day coordinator for a political consulting firm. She has also worked closely with the domestic workers rights movement both nationally and locally as part of Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFREJ), where she is on the board. Andrea has a Masters in Social Work specializing in Community Organizing from Silberman School of Social Work. She has also been a Grace Paley Organizing Fellow and Rene Cassin Human Rights Fellow. Andrea is also on the board of Rene Cassin US. Before returning to school, Andrea worked in the development department at the Metropolitan Opera. When not organizing, she has a passion for art and cooking.
Nova Lucero - Community Organizer
Nova came to the Met Council on Housing after working as a Eviction Prevention Case Manager and Housing Specialist in the South Bronx, with families facing eviction or currently living in the shelter system. Previous to that, she worked as an Interpreter and Legal Program Coordinator in White Plains, NY with The Pace Community Law Practice of Pace Law School; and later as an Interpreter and Legal Assistant at the Law Office of Craig Relles, working with low-income families and individuals facing deportation. Nova graduated from Fordham University with a B.A. in Political Science. She spent a year in Bolivia working with women and children survivors of violence and learning about organizing for legal reform on domestic violence issues.