At Urban Edge, each department places a crucial role in creating affordable homes and building wealth for the families and communities we serve. In this series, we’ll get to know who heads up each of our three departments: Community Programs, Community Engagement, and Real Estate Development.
This first installment of the series will introduce Bob Credle, head of Community Programs.
Bob Credle has been a crucial member of the Urban Edge family for 16 years. Bob and his team work to provide people with the resources and knowledge to build wealth and become homeowners, and they help keep people in their homes by preventing foreclosures.
Since he graduated college, Bob was always focused on helping people.
He first entered the nonprofit world as a board member of YouthBuild USA, an organization serving at-risk youth. Then, Bob began work at the Dimock Community Health Center, where he helped people acquire skills and find employment. These positions lead him to Urban Edge, where he now works to help people become financially strong by acquiring assets through homeownership. Bob’s work is all about helping people own homes and keep their homes.
“I love this work because Urban Edge is very successful in helping people acquire and keep their homes. We serve a lot of people.”
Bob is most excited about the progress that his team has made over the past year. The Community Programs team has been learning how to use a new client management system, and not without obstacles. In the last few months, the team has been getting the system to function in the way they want it to.
Additionally, Bob and his team have been excited about the large pool of money that they’ve had access to to help people stay out of foreclosure. Community Programs now has access to two pools of funds, one from the City of Boston, and one from the State. This money has been made available to help people recover from the financial impacts of the pandemic.
“The number of people we are serving has increased, and our ability to help them has increased. We have more resources at our disposal.”
Other new developments include the new program that Bob and his team have just launched, called the Matched Savings Program. As a part of our new strategic plan, this program provides wealth building options to help people become financially strong. The Matched Savings Program helps people improve their knowledge of finances and improve their credit, and, we reward participants for their achievements. For example, we match the amount of money people save. If you commit to save every month for 6 or 12 months, Urban Edge will provide a match for twice what you saved. If you save $20 a month for 12 months ($240) UE will give you $480.
This program has been a major highlight and exciting development for Bob. “We have really been learning how to effectively distribute the funds at our disposal to help people grow. We are just learning how to best use these tools, and I’m excited to get really good at it.”
When asked about a recent challenge that Community Programs has faced, Bob pointed to the need for more staff members at a time where Community Programs are experiencing an increase in scope and workload. Fortunately, Bob has been able to staff up quickly. By the end of August, the team will be fully staffed, and they will have increased the size of the department by one member.
Bob enjoys many aspects of his job, but his favorite part about working at Urban Edge is the people he works with.
“I work with a group of over achievers. They’re a fun group to work with, they’re extremely smart, and above all, they’re a group that really takes care of each other. In all my 16 years at Urban Edge, I’ve never seen one altercation. It’s been a unique social experience. Throughout the whole company, people just want to take care of each other. Our focus at Urban Edge is how we can help other people, and that mentality translates to the staff itself.”