By Jim Hagerty
ROCKFORD – The former head of the Rockford Housing Authority has been hired by the developer responsible for the downtown Embassy Suites and Rockford Conference Center.
“Gorman & Company is excited to announce the hiring of Ron Clewer to lead our Illinois state market as Andre Blakley, former Illinois Market President, will lead Gorman’s national public housing redevelopment platform,” Gorman posted on its Facebook page Monday.
Clewer has spent the last two years commuting to Milwaukee as the chief operating officer for the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities He spent 2010-2017 at the Rockford Housing Authority, the last five of those years as CEO.
While Clewer was responsible for forming the Bridge Rockford Alliance, his most memorable project was The Grove at Keith Creek, the 49-unit public-house development on New Towne Drive.
Despite significant blowback from neighbors, the New Towne project was completed in 2017 as part of the RHA’s five-year plan to redevelop more than 1,000 public-housing units. Gorman was the developer on the project as well as the Jane Addams Park apartments on Seminary Street near the Morgan Street Bridge.
“(Clewer) has more than 20 years of leadership experience in multi-use real estate development and asset management,” the Gorman post continued. “Ron has been instrumental in developing creative community-building initiatives in Illinois. He brings a vision and ‘can do’ attitude to his work with a determination to merge the best practices for both private and public sectors. His passion lies in quality design, quality services and quality environments.”
Clewer lives in Rockford. R.
Photo: Gorman & Company