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Chickie Graysongrayson-chickie

Enterprise Homes

Chickie Grayson enjoyed a multi-decade career providing homes for low-income families as President and CEO of Enterprise Homes.

Now known as Enterprise Community Development, the company creates affordable housing opportunities for individuals and families in Maryland and across the mid-Atlantic.

The task is “… critical for the growth of our residents in Maryland and the larger community,” she said.

After earning undergraduate and graduate degrees in urban affairs from the University of Maryland, Grayson started her career by applying to become a project manager at Enterprise in 1987.

Grayson went on to develop thousands of rental and for-sale homes, working with architects, engineers, construction workers, banks and government agencies to provide a decent place for families to live. It’s a job that requires perseverance, creativity, willpower and the right financing.

For all of her accomplishments, she has received a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Baltimore District Council of the Urban Land Institute. She’s earned the HOPE Leadership award for her role in providing homeownership opportunities for minorities.

Grayson has also been the president of the Maryland Affordable Housing Coalition, has served on the board of directors for Parks and People Foundation and with the board of trustees of the Maryland Science Center.

As a woman working in a male-dominated field, Grayson said, she has had the opportunity within her organization, professional organizations in real estate and volunteer activities to mentor several women new to their leadership positions.

“It is important to listen to women in new leadership positions and provide support, guidance, and help building leadership skills,” she said.

When it comes to building and leading a successful organization, Grayson said, the key ingredients are preparation and being ready for the right opportunity to come along, luck, consistent and transparent communication, and having a great development team filled with smart people.

The task is “… critical for the growth of our residents in Maryland and the larger community,” she said.

This is a winner profile from The Daily Record's Icon Honors awards.

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