Executive Team

The Executive Team plans, organizes and executes the organization’s operations strategy. The Executive Director and four key officers of each division meet regularly to discuss and confirm operational plans, establish organization priorities, set performance standards, coordinate projects between divisions, review progress toward organization and division goals, approve new procedures and assign project and program responsibilities. 


John Kownack

Executive Director

John Kownack

John Kownack accepted the position of Executive Directorfor the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority in March 2015.

Kownack began work with NRHA in April 2001 as its Program Services Director.  He subsequently held interim positions as Rehabilitation Services Director and Assistant Executive Director for Housing Operations.   In 2008, he administered project financing programs and was later named the Authority’s Chief Housing Reinvention Officer.  He became the Chief Community Development Officer in 2012, where he directed neighborhood revitalization, property rehabilitation assistance, housing development, home ownership assistance, and other related programs. 

Prior to NRHA, Kownack’s employment included 19 years of service with the City of Norfolk, including positions as Manager (Fiscal Division), responsible for grants and capital project budgeting and management; and Assistant Director of Human Services, responsible for administrative services, operations and financial management. Kownack has also served as the Chief Financial Officer for a private corporation specializing in the provision of therapeutic care for at-risk children.

Kownack is originally from upstate New York and attended the State University of New York at Albany (B.A. Economics) and the College of William and Mary (M.A. Government, Thesis Pending). He is married and has four children.

Contact: Phyllis Everette or 314.1679


Donna Mills

Chief Housing Officer


Contact Melanie Murphy or 757.314.2018.

Michael Clark

Interim Chief Development Officer

Mike Clark


Contact: Phyllis Everette or 757.314.1679


Virginia Mack

Interim Chief Financial Officer



 Contact: Phyllis Everette or 757.314.1679


Kim Thomas

Interim Chief Community Engagement Officer

Kim Thomas

 Contact: Phyllis Everette or 757.314.1679


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NOTICE OF NONDISCRIMINATION - NRHA provides equal housing and employment opportunities for all persons. NRHA does not discriminate against any applicant, resident or employee on the basis of disability, age, race, color, religion, gender, familial status or national origin in the admission, access or operations of programs, services or activities. NRHA complies with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. An internal grievance procedure is available to resolve complaints. If you feel you have been discriminated against, you have the right to file a complaint of discrimination  by calling toll free (888) 799-2085. Qualified individuals who need communication aids, services or other accommodations to participate in programs and activities are invited to make your needs known to the 504/ADA Coordinator, Kim Thomas (757) 623-1111. Please give NRHA at least seven to ten days advance notice to meet your needs