CHICAGO – Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago has named State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago) as its recipient of the 2022 Gale Cincotta Community Visionary Award for her many years of work improving urban neighborhoods.

NHS selected Collins for the award due to her recent success in reining in predatory lenders in lower-income communities, as well as her efforts to combat racial biases in mortgage lending.

“The unfortunate truth is that housing insecurity is most common in lower-income majority Black and Brown neighborhoods that were disadvantaged by decades of disinvestment and racist housing policies,” Collins said. “I’m proud that I’ve been able to help pass laws and put pressure on city and state leaders to turn these neighborhoods back into true communities that people are proud to call home.”

No sitting Illinois legislator has done more than Collins to help keep families in good homes. When the Great Recession threatened thousands of families with foreclosure and eviction, she took action to set in place new programs and protections for homeowners and renters alike.

She passed laws that created counseling programs for families in danger of foreclosure, requiring banks and other financial institutions that offer mortgages to take part in a national licensing system, and allowing not-for-profits to provide assistance to families in need.

NHS established the Gale Cincotta Community Visionary Award to recognize outstanding leadership in the effort to rebuild urban neighborhoods. Gale Cincotta was a prominent community activist who fought for neighborhoods and community groups and worked to eliminate "redlining" and discriminatory practices against low-income and minority communities.