On June 30, RHLS Chief Counsel, Mark Levin, will retire after 46 years of providing legal services to communities and nonprofit organizations across Pennsylvania. His work has helped thousands of Pennsylvanians find a place to call home.
While the current circumstances have left the RHLS community without the ability to celebrate Levin’s contributions in person, we hope to begin to honor his legacy virtually.
Levin shares his own reflections below.
As many of you know, in a few short weeks I will be retiring after 46 years at Regional Housing. As that day approaches it has made me reflective of my time here and rather than keep those thoughts to myself, I’m sharing them with you as an expression of appreciation.
As an impressionable and idealistic college student, I read Eldridge Cleaver’s Soul On Ice. He made a statement in that book that had a profound affect on me. Though it was stated more eloquently in the book, it has been “quoted” as “If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.” When I entered law school, I had that thought in mind and planned to be of service in some respect.
By pure luck I found Regional Housing in the summer after my first year of law school. The founder of RHLS, Lorry Post, had quit a lucrative private practice to work in legal services and subsequently create RHLS to find a different way to meet housing and community development needs. His vision of achieving social justice by helping to improve lower-income communities inspired me and made RHLS my home.
Over the years I have been more than fortunate to represent an incredible group of clients whose own sense of social justice, commitment and hard work has both inspired and awed me. Knowing them has enriched my life.
This work has given me the opportunity to work with private and governmental lenders, investors, contractors, architects, consultants, title agents, advocates and service providers. While each has their own particular set of interests and perspectives, I found that they are all committed to the mission of improving life for lower-income households. It has been a pleasure to work on projects with you.
I have also been blessed to work with the incredibly talented, committed and collegial staff of Regional Housing under the lightly “guiding” hand of my dear friend Mark Schwartz. Their presence and help has made coming to work every day an easy pleasure. Leaving RHLS knowing that they are still there assures me that our clients, and the broader lower-income community, will be greatly served for many years to come.
As I leave Regional Housing hopefully it can be said that through my work with all of you, I’ve been part of the solution.
The staff of RHLS thanks Mark Levin for his incredible contributions to legal services and affordable housing.