Our Housing & Asset Building staff operate across the U.S. and represent diverse backgrounds, bringing a wealth of experience and perspectives to our work. Meet some of our team members:
Kenisha Bryant, Ed.D.
Kenisha has more than 10 years of progressive experience in policy development, program planning, integrating multiple systems, service providers, and government departments. She supports HUD’s Youth Homeless Demonstration Project and efforts to end unsheltered homelessness in California, and provides technical assistance to partners in Hennepin County, Minnesota. Through her direct service work with vulnerable populations, she has developed a specific focus on coordinated entry, capacity building, and centering racial equity in homeless system planning and design.
Brittany Davis, Ph.D.
Brittany has extensive experience as a social work practitioner, educator, and researcher. Her experience includes providing homeless support services, community-based services at a public housing site, workforce development services, children and family services, and clinical social work. Brittany’s research has been informed by her lived experiences, social work practice, and community organizing experiences. Her research has examined equitable development strategies for historically low-income Black communities, bridging racial homeownership disparities (i.e., shared equity housing), the sociocultural impacts of gentrification on Black residents, place identity and neighborhood attachment, and anti-racist social work education and training.
Lindsey Elam, AICP
Lindsey is a Senior Analyst with experience conducting evaluations and policy research in the housing and community development field. Prior to joining Abt, Lindsey was Manager of Research for the Greater Ohio Policy Center. She has served as a third-party evaluator for several major grants and initiatives. Lindsey is also a Certified Planner who has contributed to numerous comprehensive, strategic, and area plans for local governments and nonprofits. She has worked with communities for over seven years — facilitating countless public and stakeholder engagement activities and providing qualitative and quantitative data analyses to inform programs and policy changes.
Melody Frederick, MSW
Melody provides technical assistance for the HOME-ARP program and other federal grants. She brings extensive practical experience from the perspective of grantees or participating jurisdictions, through her years of grant administration and implementation of housing/community development programs. Melody’s combined education in Urban and Regional Planning and Social Work gives her the ability to promote greater understanding and advocate for underserved individuals and communities. Melody is experienced with program planning, implementation, and regulatory compliance. Before joining Abt, she worked for local governments in Florida for 18 years, then joined the private sector in 2021 to help small communities administer CDBG programs.
Zachary McDermott, Ph.D.
Zac joined Abt in 2022 after completing their doctorate in public policy from NYU. As a policy researcher, most of their work is at the intersection of education and homelessness. In their dissertation, Zac explored the differences in educational outcomes for NYC students in different homeless contexts (i.e., doubled-up housing vs. homeless shelter). At Abt, Zac's current work includes 1) evaluating the ERAP’s impact on housing stability in the U.S., and 2) a mixed-methods project documenting the experiences of BIPOC youth experiencing doubled-up homelessness in Los Angeles County. Prior to Abt, Zac also worked as a research consultant at the NYC Mayor's Office at the Center for Innovation through Data Intelligence on various projects at the intersection of homelessness, foster care, and education.
Amanda Yoshioka-Maxwell, Ph.D.
Amanda’s work focuses on transitional-age youth and former foster youth, homelessness, and risk behaviors. She uses social network analysis, modeling, and other quantitative research methods to understand the risks, barriers and facilitators that affect individuals, communities, and their networks. As a clinical social worker and social work researcher, she uses artificial intelligence, machine learning and other techniques together to better understand risk prediction among youth experiencing or at risk of experiencing homelessness.