Fair Share Housing Center

About Us

Staff

  • Peter J. O’Connor is Fair Share Housing Center’s founder. Over the last four decades, O’Connor has been a tireless legal crusader for the rights of low-income families in New Jersey to live in high-opportunity neighborhoods with decent jobs and good schools. When he’s not battling in the courtroom, O’Connor is busy developing housing for the poor in South Jersey where he heads Fair Share Housing Development, which has developed and manages 656 units of affordable housing, including Ethel R. Lawrence Homes.

  • Adam M. Gordon is Executive Director at Fair Share Housing Center. He joined the organization as an Equal Justice Works Fellow in 2006. In his work with FSHC, Gordon has litigated at the New Jersey Supreme Court and Appellate Division and worked on state and federal policy issues including very-low-income housing in high opportunity communities, Low Income Housing Tax Credit allocation, and statewide fair share allocation. Gordon is also co-founder of the magazine Next City, which the New York Times described as a “subtle plan to change the world,” and a non-resident fellow at the NYU Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy where he has worked on several initiatives on reshaping federal housing policy to focus on sustainable and inclusive communities. A New Jersey native, Gordon holds a B.A. and J.D. from Yale University.

  • Laura Smith-Denker is a Senior Staff Attorney at Fair Share Housing Center. She joined the organization in 2010. Smith-Denker is a graduate of Franklin and Marshall College and Florida Coastal School of Law. She is involved in all aspects of the Center’s advocacy including litigating before the Appellate Division and testifying at Legislative hearings. Ms. Smith-Denker also assists in the administration of the organization.

  • Rev. Eric Dobson is Fair Share Housing Center’s Deputy Director. Eric joined Fair Share Housing Center’s as Director of Community Engagement in 2012 and is an ordained minister, a community organizer, outreach specialist and social entrepreneur. He holds a B.A. from Temple University in Religion. He has extensive experience working with diverse audiences and communities and specializes in interfaith outreach. Eric is the Co-Founder of Open Communities LLC, a racial integration consultant firm that works to resolve simple and complex conflicts of race, ethnicity and socio- economics. He also founded a non-profit focused on youth development and education, Planting Seeds of Hope, and in 2008 served as the PA Clergy Outreach Director for the Obama Campaign.

  • David T. Rammler joined Fair Share Housing Center in 2012. Following years of low-income tenant advocacy as a practicing Philadelphia attorney, Rammler worked from 1998 through early 2006, with federally assisted housing residents and resident organizations in South Jersey as managing attorney of the landlord-tenant and public benefits units at the Camden office of South Jersey Legal Services. Building on this direct representation experience, David pursued resident supportive federal housing policy in legislative, regulatory and funding arenas as Director of Government Relations in the Washington, D.C. office of the National Housing Law Project from 2007 to 2011. David brought this knowledge of federal housing law and policy to the Fair Share Housing Center Sandy Recovery struggle, helping Fair Share and their allies across the state understand the avenues and opportunities for fair housing and lower-income resident advocacy in the design and implementation of federally funded recovery programs. David continues, today, to collaborate with the network of disaster response and recovery resident and community advocates from across the country and Puerto Rico that Fair Share has helped to build.

  • Joshua D. Bauers is a Staff Attorney at Fair Share Housing Center. A graduate of Rutgers University, he joined the organization in 2015 as the Inaugural Maida Public Interest Fellow. His fellowship through the Rutgers University School of Law focused on redevelopment and affordable housing. As a student at Rutgers, Bauers was a recipient of the Mary Philbrook student public interest award, the Dean’s Pro Bono Publico Award for Exceptional Service, and the Eve Biskind Klothen Pro Bono Distinction Award. Focusing his advocacy on redevelopment, Bauers is involved in all of the Center’s legal work.

  • Yvette Chen is the Planning and Policy Analyst at Fair Share Housing Center, first joining as an intern in 2014. She earned her BA from Oberlin College in Sociology and Economics and completes her Masters in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania in May 2020. Yvette has previous experience interning at The Century Foundation and as a Summer Fellow at the Othering & Belonging Institute at UC Berkeley. Yvette works on data analysis, writing, and collaborating with other organizations to further fair housing and racial justice in the context of land use and disaster recovery.

  • Bassam F. Gergi is a Staff Attorney and 2019 Arthur Liman Fellow at Fair Share Housing Center. The Liman Fellowship is awarded by Yale Law School, where Bassam earned his J.D. in 2017, for work to respond to problems of inequality and to improve access to justice. In law school, Bassam served as the director of Yale’s Legislative Advocacy Clinic. Prior to joining FSHC, he was a judicial law clerk to Chief Justice Stuart J. Rabner of the New Jersey Supreme Court. Bassam is a New Jersey native and holds an M.Phil. in comparative government from the University of Oxford.

  • James C. Williams IV is FSHC’s Director of Racial Justice Policy. He joined Fair Share Housing Center in 2019 after working for Philadelphia Works and previously New Jersey Institute for Social Justice. Williams attended Fayetteville State University in North Carolina where he received both his B.A. and M.S. degrees. He has been an advocate for civil rights and social justice throughout his career.

  • Elorm Ocansey joined Fair Share Housing Center as the Housing Access Organizer in 2019. He works across the state to connect residents and grassroots organizations to affordable housing opportunities. Before joining FSHC, he served as an AmeriCorps Volunteer with New Jersey Community Capital, working as a communication specialist for their low-income homeownership program. Elorm holds a B.A in Communications and Cinema Studies from Rutgers University.

  • Donna Gomez joined Fair Share Housing Center in 2014 as an Administrative Assistant. Donna has had over 25 years working with human resources management and general bookkeeping.

  • Liz Peterson joined Fair Share Housing Center in 2014. She is the File Coordinator and provides administrative as well as legal support to the office. She has a B.A. in International Studies / Political Science from Johns Hopkins University, and a J.D. from the University of Washington in Seattle.