All-America City Keynote Speaker Bios

Adrianne Todman is the 12th Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Deputy Secretary Todman has dedicated her career to improving people’s lives and strengthening communities through housing.

Deputy Secretary Todman served as the CEO of the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) from 2017 to June 2021. During her tenure, Deputy Secretary Todman improved the association’s financial standing and business operations, created a member-centric culture, and advocated for funding and policies to preserve and develop affordable housing and help communities thrive.

Before joining NAHRO, Deputy Secretary Todman served as the Executive Director of the District of Columbia Housing Authority (DCHA) from 2009 to 2017. At DCHA, Ms. Todman implemented a national award-winning model to house veterans experiencing homelessness, increased homeownership opportunities by 50 percent for low- and moderate-income families served by DCHA, increased the number of affordable units available in sub-markets experiencing rapid growth, and oversaw 12 concurrent large redevelopment efforts. She prioritized youth empowerment programs and workforce development, and commissioned the first citywide needs assessment of public housing residents.

Deputy Secretary Todman also served in several career positions at HUD. First, as a manager of HUD’s $500 million grant competition that focused on the redevelopment of distressed public housing sites, then as a policy aide in both the Office of Public and Indian Housing, and the Office of the Secretary where she worked with staff across HUD’s programs on policy solutions and streamlining implementation.

Deputy Secretary Todman believes that we have a responsibility to confront housing insecurity and help ensure access to good homes, to eliminate all forms of housing discrimination, and to build our nation’s housing infrastructure in a way that expands equitable access to housing for all people.

As Deputy Secretary, Todman will work alongside Secretary Fudge to ensure that HUD has the staff and tools it needs to administer and provide oversight over programs critical to supporting families and to moving the country forward.

Deputy Secretary Todman’s career in public service began in the office of then-Congressman Ron de Lugo, a long-serving delegate representing the U.S. Virgin Islands, where Todman was born and raised. She is a graduate of Smith College. She lives in Washington, D.C.


Steve Adler is Austin’s 52nd Mayor, having won re-election in 2018 by 40 points in a field of 8 candidates. His top priorities include mobility, affordability, and equity for all Austinites. Adler is a Trustee of the United States Conference of Mayors, Past Chair of the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) policy board, and Vice President of the National Council of Democratic Mayors.

While he’s been in office the City of Austin passed the largest mobility and affordable housing bonds in its history. The city raised its minimum city wage to $15/hr, passed city-wide sick leave and second chance hiring protections. Still working on the homelessness challenge, the city has become one of a limited number of cities to achieve effective net zero veteran homelessness. The city has become a world leader on climate change action.

Mayor Adler has received broad recognition for innovative leadership. Foreign Policy named him a Global reThinker and Living Cities included Mayor Adler on its list of 25 Disruptive Leaders (along with Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and author Ta-Nehisi Coates) to mark that organization’s 25th anniversary.

Sharon Davies is the president and CEO of the Kettering Foundation.

Davies’ career experiences span both academic and non-academic fields. From 2017-2021, Davies was provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Spelman College. She joined Spelman from The Ohio State University, where she was vice provost for diversity and inclusion and chief diversity officer. Davies was also a member of OSU’s Moritz College of Law faculty for 22 years, serving as the Gregory H. Williams Chair in Civil Rights and Civil Liberties. In addition, Davies directed the university’s Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race & Ethnicity, an interdisciplinary engaged research institute known nationally for its work in social justice, equity, and inclusion. She also held an appointment to the Ohio Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

Davies was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and a Notes and Comments Editor of the Columbia Law Review while in law school at Columbia University. After graduation, she worked for Steptoe and Johnson in Washington, DC and Lord, Day & Lord Barrett Smith in New York City. She served for five years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the US Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York.

Davies was the recipient of a YWCA Woman of Achievement award from the YWCA Columbus chapter (2015); the Robert M. Duncan Award by the Columbus Chapter of the American Constitution Society (April 2014) in recognition of her contributions to democracy, fostering legal education, ensuring access to justice, and preserving individual rights and the rule of law; and the Liberty Bell Award from the Columbus Bar Association (June 2013).

Davies’ articles and other writings have been published in some of the nation’s leading law journals, including the Duke Law Journal, the Southern California Law Review, the Columbia Law Review, the Michigan Law Review, and Law and Contemporary Problems. In 2010, Oxford University Press published Davies’s narrative nonfiction account of a 1921 murder trial in Birmingham, Alabama, titled Rising Road: A True Tale of LoveRace, and Religion in America, for which the Mayor of Birmingham presented her with a “Key to the City.”

Davies has an undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a law degree from Columbia University School of Law.

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