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Meet Our Housing Team
From housing policy and advocacy to sharing best practices,
our Housing Team is devoted to the goal of housing affordability for all.

Matt Huerta, Housing Program Director

mhuerta@mbep.biz

Matt has over 20 years of experience in affordable housing and community development. He has developed hundreds of affordable housing units across the San Francisco and Monterey Bay Areas. He has led nationally recognized housing programs as a former Executive Director of Neighborhood Housing Services Silicon Valley. Matt serves on the Board of the California Coalition for Rural Housing. He earned a B.S. in Community and Regional Development from the University of California at Davis where he also served as the President of the Associated Students during his senior year. Matt has lived in Salinas since 2005. He enjoys exercising, playing basketball with friends and spending time outdoors with wife Diana Huerta and four young children. 

Alyssa Kroeger, Housing Program Manager

akroeger@mbep.biz

Alyssa grew up in the Old Gilroy neighborhood where vast walnut orchards once reigned prior to the development of single-family homes. There she experienced the challenges of housing insecurity first-hand and became intimately aware of disparate impacts on low-income families in opportunity zones at an early age. Regularly inspired by the community-based work and legacy of her late uncle, Padre Mateo Sheedy, she is deeply passionate about “all things justice” and actively seeks to engage with opportunities to help build stronger communities and lift the voices of those historically underserved.

Alyssa received her Bachelor of Arts in International Studies with a focus in Political Science and a minor in Spanish Literature from the University of California, San Diego. Alyssa comes to MBEP with several years of experience in nonprofit housing providing direct services to ensure fair housing rights and leveraging innovative programming to help secure residents’ homes. In her free time, she enjoys gardening, walking her rescued Cattle Dog, and camping in the mountains.

Rafael Hernandez, Housing Program Associate

rhernandez@mbep.biz

From community organizing, filmmaking, teaching, consulting work, and volunteering, Rafael has over 20 years of experience working for immigrant and underserved communities throughout California and in multiple countries abroadHe’s taught thousands of grade school students and many others at Hartnell college, was a volunteer teacher for gang youth at Rancho Cielo, and has worked with countless farmworker families in supporting their children’s education in the Salinas Valley. He focuses on housing because he sees housing as central to people’s lives. 
 
Rafael earned his B.A. in Sociology from the University of California at Berkeley, and his Masters in Public Administration at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. He is an Education Pioneers Fellow, an award-winning documentary filmmaker, and speaks four languages. He is an avid practitioner of mixed martial arts and writing rap poetry. Above all, he is a committed father whose favorite thing in the world is being with his son.
Elizabeth Madrigal, Housing Associate

emadrigal@mbep.biz

Monterey Bay Economic Partnership (MBEP) is pleased to introduce its new housing associate, Elizabeth Madrigal.

Hailing from the Salinas Valley, Madrigal shares a deep passion for the Monterey Bay region and all who call it home. Describing herself as a passionate advocate for increasing equitable access to affordable housing, Madrigal recognizes the utmost importance of working towards creative solutions that will alleviate the housing crisis our region is facing.

“Growing up, I saw both sides of not having affordable housing, from living in precarious housing situations to having the stability of residing in affordable housing, and have firsthand experience of what that can bring to one’s life,” says Madrigal. “I truly believe everyone deserves to have that same living situation, for themselves and their family.”

Madrigal earned her BA in Political Science and Public Policy from the University of California, Berkeley. While a student at UC Berkeley, she was a part of the second cohort of the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California’s Bay Area Housing Internship Program, a paid internship program that trains low-income college students of color to jumpstart careers in affordable housing development and project management. Subsequently, Madrigal worked for an affordable housing non-profit in San Francisco’s Mission District in which she focused her efforts on transit-oriented developments and acquisition/rehabilitation projects.

Madrigal first met MBEP’s Housing Team while interning in a program that Housing Program Manager Matt Huerta helped facilitate, and as a Hartnell College Sociology student of MBEP Housing Associate Rafael when he was a Sociology instructor there.

Madrigal is elated to join the MBEP team and looks forward to working towards sustaining our thriving region and ensuring a safe and affordable home for folks in our community.

 

Alvaro Mendoza, Housing Elements Intern

Alvaro Mendoza graduated with a bachelor’s degree from California State University Monterey Bay in Social Behavioral Sciences in 2021, moreover, he also received his Associates in Administration of Justice at Hartnell College in 2019. He is planning to transfer to California State University, Sacramento to pursue a masters degree in Social Policy & Administration in 2022. After taking classes in contemporary immigration as an undergraduate, Alvaro wrote a research memorandum that bridged his understanding of how climate change and immigration are interconnected with one another which ultimately led him to seek an internship in the field of environmental health. Before starting his master’s program, Alvaro started his internship with MBEP because he wishes to make a lifelong impact in the community that provided him with all the help that got him to where he is today. In his free time, he enjoys going on hikes with his friends, traveling across the country, and recreating art.