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Mayor Woodward appoints Jenn Cerecedes as new CHHS director

The position has been open since July, when former director Cupid Alexander resigned and later accused a city employee of discriminating against him due to his race.
Credit: City of Spokane
Jenn Cerecedes.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Jenn Cerecedes has been appointed as the new director of the Spokane Community, Housing, and Human Services (CHHS) Department, Mayor Nadine Woodward announced on Tuesday. Spokane City Council confirmed the appointment the same day.

She will begin her role on January 3, 2022.

The position has been open since July 2021, when former director Cupid Alexander resigned and later accused City Administrator Johnnie Perkins of treating him differently due to his race. Woodward later ordered an investigation into the allegations of discrimination.

Cerecedes is the newest addition to the division, which recently added four other members in recent weeks. She is "an experienced homelessness and transitional housing professional, grants manager, and community collaborator", according to Woodward.

“Jenn’s experience leading both transitional housing and homelessness programs in our community is a great fit for the mix of work CHHS is responsible for facilitating,” Woodward said in a statement. “We are excited to add her leadership and experience.”

Throughout the years, Cerecedes has managed homelessness and transitional housing programs for the Spokane Neighborhood Action Partners (SNAP) and served as a member of the AmeriCorps VISTA program.

Cerecedes was in charge of 14 staff members and managed grants from more than 15 sources during her time with SNAP, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. She was part of an effort resulting in community-wide homelessness planning to create an entry program for service connection. 

Most recently, Cerecedes worked in strategic project management and marketing for Clearwater Paper.

“The CHHS department director is a critical piece to ensuring grant funding gets efficiently to our partners who are meeting critical needs,” said Eric Finch, the director of the Neighborhood, Housing, and Human Services division. “The team is also responsible for the oversight and monitoring of those funds to keep our community in good standing and eligible for additional resources.”

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