The new Quad Cities Land Bank Authority is ready to officially launch with the hiring of a new program manager.
The newly created intergovernmental agency was formed in April 2022 by the cities of Moline, Rock Island, and East Moline. In addition to grants from the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA), each municipality contributed funds to cover startup costs to establish the Land Bank — including the hiring of a program manager, according to a Wednesday release.
The mission of the Authority is to strategically acquire vacant, abandoned, tax-delinquent properties, address title liabilities, and facilitate revitalization of those properties to a productive use consistent with local government plans and priorities.
A Board of Directors made up of representatives from each city has formed to oversee group operations. Members include Chair, Miles Brainard, Community and Economic Development Director for the city of Rock Island, Vice-Chair, K.J. Whitley, Community Development Manager for the city of Moline, and Secretary/Treasurer, Annaka Whiting, Finance Director for the city of East Moline.
The Board recently hired Mary Chappell as the new Land Bank Program Manager.
She will be responsible for overall management and operation of the Land Bank. Her duties include protecting bank assets, ensuring compliance with board directives, preparing and handling legal and highly confidential information, and coordinating with community partners to address and support community goals. Chappell begins her new position on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022.
Mary has more than 23 years of experience in community development in both the non-profit and public sectors. She recently served as the Neighborhood Revitalization Director for Habitat for Humanity Quad Cities where she led a new program that focused on supporting the goals of the Floreciente neighborhood of Moline.
Prior to her work with Habitat, she spent 15 years with the city of Rock Island in the Community and Economic Development Department. Chappell was responsible for managing business incentive programs and the city’s real estate holdings. This included facilitating business expansion and retention activities and addressing vacant and abandoned properties.
“I am very excited about the new Quad Cities Land Bank Authority,” she said in Wednesday’s release. “I understand the need to stabilize our neighborhoods and communities and the importance of returning vacant or abandoned properties to the tax rolls.
“I look forward to working with city partners to achieve their goals and to collaborate with various community partners to support their development efforts.”
The overall goal of the QC Land Bank is to foster sustainable, healthy, and stable communities through the redevelopment of troubled properties. Organized and operating under the state laws of Illinois, the QC organization will be the ninth Land Bank in Illinois.