Our Team

Executive Leadership

Michael Chavarria

Executive Director

Michael Chavarria joined as HOPE’s Executive Director in January 2022. Chavarria, an Illinois native, has dedicated the last 8 years of his career to fighting for fair housing around the state. Michael joins HOPE role with not only a wealth of expertise in fair housing enforcement, but also a background in coalition building and a strong network of partnerships with local, state, and national community leaders and housing organizations.

Michael grew up in Matteson, IL as it was being transformed by some of the nation’s fastest documented white flight and has dedicated his career to working alongside those most impacted by housing discrimination and community disinvestment to advance fair housing.

Michael is thrilled to be leading HOPE. His extensive fair housing background and strong coalition building and advocacy experience is a true asset for the agency.

Josefina Navar

Deputy Director

Josefina Navar was recently appointed as HOPE’s new Deputy Director in November 2022. In her new role, Josefina provides day-to-day leadership and management that aligns with HOPE’s mission, while also coordinating operational functions. Previously, Josefina served as HOPE’s Director of Enforcement from September 2019-November 2022, where she conducted and oversaw numerous testing and non-testing investigations, filed complaints and represented complainants, while also engaging in brief advocacy and mediation on behalf of clients with disabilities needing assistance with reasonable accommodation requests.

Before joining HOPE’s staff, Josefina was the Testing and Outreach Coordinator, and later, Senior Fair Housing Investigations Coordinator at Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights from 2009 – 2019.  Josefina is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Illinois and worked in Mental Health services for 7 years as a case manager and therapist prior to becoming a Fair Housing advocate.



Blake Mitchell

Associate Director of Enforcement

Blake Mitchell was appointed as HOPE’s new Associate Director of Enforcement in June 2023. He previously served as HOPE’s Intake Specialist and most recently as our Special Projects & Grants Manager. He graduated from North Central College in 2019 with degrees in French and Political Science and a minor in Middle Eastern/North African Studies. Prior to his time at HOPE, Blake completed a year of service through the AmeriCorps VISTA program at Hesed House Homeless Shelter in Aurora.

As Associate Director of Enforcement, Blake oversees and conducts various investigations and other fair housing enforcement work.

Sasha Mothershead

Special Projects & Grants Manager

Sasha Mothershead was appointed Grants Manager in May 2024. Previously, she worked as our Fair Housing Specialist. Sasha graduated from Carleton College in 2021 with a degree in American Studies and a concentration in Educational Studies. Prior to HOPE, she worked as a Development Associate and Education Support at The Soulard School. Throughout her academic career and post-graduation, she’s enjoyed spending time working in schools, conducting research for restorative justice projects, and organizing political campaigns in her hometown of St. Louis.  

As Special Projects & Grants Manager, Sasha manages all grant application submissions, grant reporting, and grant making to external entities. She also supports the organization as needed with Special Projects that require data analysis, research, and other investigation expertise. 

June Bishop

Investigations Coordinator

June Bishop began working for HOPE in 1996, serving as the part-time bookkeeper and providing accounting services for the organization for over three years. In June of 2011, Ms. Bishop returned and began working for HOPE full time as HOPE’s Intake Specialist and became HOPE’s Investigations Coordinator in 2020. Prior to working for HOPE, Ms. Bishop worked as an assistant commercial property manager for over 13 years, and additionally, spent 11 years working as a Senior Executive Secretary to the National Human Resources Manager, and later, for the National Director of Merchandising Research at Sears National Headquarters’ offices on the west side of Chicago.

Ms. Bishop is an integral component of HOPE’s enforcement staff and is involved in systemic investigations and coordinates logistics for on-site assessments. Additionally, she also works with HOPE’s Intake & Grants Manager to compile organizational data needed for HUD grant reporting.

Charlie Morvay

Intake Specialist

Charlie Morvay began at HOPE in September 2023 with experience in mental health advocacy and working with individuals with disabilities. Prior to this, he graduated from Northern Illinois University with his Bachelor’s in Psychology.

As Intake Specialist, Charlie is responsible for processing intakes from clients, providing administrative support, and assisting in the overall furthering of HOPE’s mission. 


Education & Outreach

Jocelyn Rios

Associate Director of Outreach

Jocelyn Rios transitioned into the role of Associate Director of Outreach in September 2023, previously serving as HOPE’s Outreach Coordinator. She graduated from Aurora University in 2017 with a degree in Disabilities Studies with a minor in Psychology, and again in 2021 with a Master’s in Public Administration. Prior to her time at HOPE, Jocelyn worked at SEASPAR, a special recreation association serving adults with disabilities.  

As the Associate Director of Outreach, Jocelyn oversees HOPE’s Education & Outreach activities. With this role, she implements new strategies to increase awareness of fair housing rights across the state and continues fostering relationships with community organizations and industry professionals to provide educational materials on fair housing at the federal, state and local levels.  

Isabel Anderson

Outreach Coordinator

Isabel Anderson was appointed as HOPE’s new Outreach Coordinator in November 2023. After graduating from Carleton College in 2022 with a degree in Cinema and Media Studies and a concentration in Creative Writing, she served as the Marketing and Education Fellow at Film Streams, an arthouse cinema in Omaha, Nebraska. 

As Outreach Coordinator, she works to plan and host HOPE events and provide training to the community and industry organizations about fair housing.

Cameron Rapata

Communications Coordinator

Cameron Rapata joined HOPE in August 2023 with a background in nonprofit communications. He specializes in video production, writing, graphic design, and developing brand identity. Cameron graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a degree in Film and Creative Writing. During his studies, he enjoyed learning from industry professionals who helped him hone his craft.

As Communications Coordinator, Cameron produces digital and print communications in support of our Outreach team. This ranges from managing social media, to designing a brochure, or even producing a video. Cameron is excited to bring his skillset into the fair housing realm and hopes to further our mission of creating greater housing opportunities for all.


Our Board

Florentina Rendón


Florentina Rendón was born in Mexico and raised on the West Side of Chicago. She attended a Catholic elementary school as well as a Catholic high school. She received her Associate’s Degree in Paralegal Studies.

After working for a Chicago law firm for five years, Florentina worked for the next 17 years in civil rights. One of the organizations she worked for was the Mexican American Legal Defense & Educational Fund (MALDEF), the only national legal organization for the Latino community. While at MALDEF, Florentina worked on a four-month trial in federal court regarding redistricting the City of Chicago.

Florentina also worked for HOPE Fair Housing Center as a Test Coordinator and then as Director of Outreach. While at HOPE, Florentina assisted in housing discrimination cases against the City of Elgin, the City of West Chicago, and Arlington Park Racetrack.

Florentina lives in Lombard with her husband and her two children. Her daughter attends Glenbard East High School and her son attends Montini Catholic High School.

Maria Padilla

Maria Padilla holds a Title of Family Doctor, a Degree comparable to the U.S. Doctor of Medicine from Medical School in Monterrey, N.L. Mexico. She has been working in the Head Start program for the last 7 years for Metropolitan Family Services in DuPage County as a Family Support Worker and for 8 years before that in the same role for Lifelink, a non-profit agency in DuPage. Maria also spent over a decade working as a bilingual teacher in Cicero, Illinois and a few years in the medical field here in USA and Mexico.

Maria currently serves as a volunteer at Westmont Public Library teaching Spanish, as well as participating in other seasonal Social Services programs for the community. She was also elected as the Secretary of HOPE’s Board of directors in 2018, and she is a member of the COD Foundation Committee. She is Bilingual in English and Spanish and a service-focused social worker and educator with a strong commitment to serving the needs of disadvantaged families and children.

Michael Childress

Michael has an extensive background in nonprofit and advocacy work. He received a triple Bachelors from the University of Dubuque, Iowa and an MBA and MHRM from Keller Graduated School of Management. He has volunteered with the Fairy Godmother Foundation,  the Mentoring Program at the Position of Pressure Youth Center, and the Corliss High STEM Mentoring Program.

Michael previously served on the board of directors of Family Rescue, one of the largest Domestic Violence Advocacy programs in Chicago. He is currently on the Board of Directors, as well as Chief Trainer and Speaker for Sister Against Abuse Society (SAAS), with a certification as a Domestic Violence survivor advocate. 

Michael was elected as Bloomingdale Park Commissioner in February 2011. There he worked to make parks handicap accessible, improved programs and increase property values. He is also the former President of the DuPage County Branch of the NAACP, having overseen 21 active committees. He is the current 1st vice-president of the DuPage County Branch of the NAACP. Additionally, he the first African-American ever elected to the DuPage County Board and was elected unanimous County Board Chair Vice-Chair. Hs is a board Member of the DuPage County Historical Museum.

Michael has lived in Bloomingdale since 1988. He has two daughters.

Andrea Juracek

Andrea Juracek is the Director of the Fair Housing/Public Housing Revisioning Team for Enterprise Community Partners Advisors, where she consults nationally with public housing, governmental, and community-based agencies on creating equitable housing policies and programs. Previously, Andrea served as the Executive Director of Housing Choice Partners, a nonprofit organization serving the Chicago area that specializes in advancing equitable housing solutions for communities impacted by historical racial and economic injustice.

Andrea has also served as Director of Fair Housing for Open Communities and Deputy Director of HOPE Fair Housing Center, where she advised on fair housing investigations and complaint filings and assisted with program and organizational management. 

In her free time, she enjoys running, volunteering with local ecological restoration projects, and spending quality time with her husband, Patrick, and rescue dog, Squirrel.

Joerika Stitt

Joerika Stitt is a licensed attorney currently in private practice. She is passionate about housing justice and has dedicated her career to advocating for vulnerable populations. She previously worked as a staff attorney at the Shriver Center on Poverty Law, where she focused on housing issues, and as a legal aid attorney at Prairie State Legal Services. Her background also includes experience as a social worker, where she worked with individuals facing poverty, mental illness, and addiction. Joerika is committed to fighting for equity and justice, and she is excited to bring her expertise and passion to the HOPE Fair Housing board. 



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