Ms. Garcia has led Ventura County Community Development Corporation (VCCDC), a private, non-profit community economic development group, since it was founded in 2001 in cooperation with affordable housing advocate, Rodney Fernandez. Ms. Garcia started her career at Cabrillo Economic Development Corporation, also founded by Mr. Fernandez, in 1988, helping to build organizational capacity in several areas as part of the Senior Management team. One of her first challenges was to design and implement a multi-purpose center to create opportunities for low-to moderate income first-time home buyers, by providing them with pre-purchase classes and one-on-one counseling as well as access to affordable capital in the form of down payment assistance and low-interest first mortgage financing. This center is now known as the VCCDC Homeownership Center.
In 2008, she was appointed as VCCDC’s Executive Director by the Board and during the following years, Ms. Garcia further deepened her knowledge and experience as a non-profit administrator. She went on to become the chief architect of VCCDC’s mortgage lending operation and she successfully grew the organization and developed it to the strong organization it is today. Since then, not only has Ms. Garcia run the complex day to day operations, she has also developed multiple programs, ensured achievement of corporate goals, she has reached out and represented the organization to the broader community, and most importantly dedicated her career to helping carry out Mr. Fernandez’s vision of providing families with decent and affordable housing. Ms. Garcia’s relentless drive to empower struggling families to better themselves economically was, and continues to be, her passion.
In the past 30 years, Ms. Garcia has touched countless families in providing assistance with its unique services ranging from basic financial instruction to helping them achieve the dream of homeownership through mortgage lending including down payment assistance. Under her leadership, VCCDC has become a fully functioning Homeownership Center, it has earned the designation of a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) and it has been certified by the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide counseling services. Ms. Garcia has worked tirelessly to address the growing homeownership affordability gap facing very low, low, and moderate income families living in Ventura County by providing them with access to affordable first mortgages and deferred subordinate loans made possible through capital raised from financial institutions, intermediaries, foundations, municipalities, and state and federal government.