HONOLULU — While in Hawaii for NAFCU’s 40th Annual Conference, NCUA Vice Chairman Rodney Hood visited with Hawaii’s two NeighborWorks America affiliates to better understand their work.

Kendall Hirai, executive director of the Hawaii HomeOwnership Center, and Dave Nakamura, executive director of the Mutual Housing Association of Hawaii, briefed Hood on their efforts to help boost affordable housing.

Hood serves on the NeighborWorks Board. “As a member of the NeighborWorks America Board of Directors, I was honored to have the opportunity to meet Mr. Hirai who is tirelessly leading the effort to find affordable housing for people living in one of the most expensive housing markets in the nation. It is a privilege for me to visit the HomeOwnership Center, it and its people are an inspiration to the industry,” he said.

The Hawaii HomeOwnership Center strives to create successful first-time homeowners by providing educational information and support. “From an economic standpoint,” the vice chairman said, “increasing homeownership rates for all Americans has never been more important. Owning a home is the foundation of wealth creation for families and is their quickest path to self-sufficiency.”