Board of Directors

Gloria Johnson, President
Sean Fontes, Vice President
Pamela Ross, Secretary
Shomari Husband, Treasurer
Angela Ankoma

Dariel Blanco
Adriana Dawson
Elizabeth Debs
Gibran Gonzalez
Cheryl Isom
Yvette Kenner

Taino Palermo
Colleen Ramos
Victor Ross
Julius Searight
Elfreda Thorpe
Juan Wilson

Development Committees



Our Staff

Executive Director: Sharon Conard Wells

Sharon Conard-Wells has been in community development work for most of her life, professionally and personally. After working as a computer systems analyst and serving as Clerk to the RI Senate Corporations Committee, she returned to her roots and became involved with West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation (WEHDC) where she has been the Executive Director since 1991.

Under Sharon’s leadership, West Elmwood Housing works to keep pace with the industry by positioning the agency to be a successful 21st century community development corporation. The tax exempt corporation is a member of NeighborWorks America and holds several national certifications including Home Ownership Center, Full Cycle Lender, Green Organization and is a HUD approved counseling agency. Over $115,000,000 has been raised for real estate and community development. She has completed the arduous adaptive reuse redevelopment of two Brownfield historic mills and three low income tax credit rental projects.

Ms. Conard-Wells holds a Master of Education degree from Cambridge College and a fellowship from Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government. Sharon is certified in apartment management, crime prevention, and as a trainer of trainers.

Sharon serves on the Board of Directors for Care New England, the Brain Injury Association of RI, Grow Smart RI and The Housing Network of RI, the Integra ACO Council, Santander Bank Community Advisory Board and the Rockland Trust New Market Tax Credit Advisory Board.

Belinda Philippe: Chief Operating Officer

Belinda Lima Philippe is a native Rhode Islander with over 25 years of experience in community involvement, building, programs and leadership. She has a BA in Social Work and Masters in Business Administration. She acquires a deep rooted passion for community empowerment and has extensive experience with leadership in non-profit and community based agencies. From 2006- 2012, she ventured out overseas and refined her entrepreneurship and community drive in the Cape Verde Islands as Founder/CEO of a Real Estate Development/Tourism Company and a community based music academy through bondless government, corporate and community partnerships. Belinda enthusiastically joined the WEHDC Team as Chief Operating Officer in March of 2017 and thrive to remain an asset to the organization’s current and future success.


Jovania Innocent Office Manager   ext #23

HomeOwnership Center

Jeri Martins: Manager HomeOwnership Center   ext #20

Jeri Martins: English Homeownership Counselor   ext #20

Angela Soto De Abreu: Spanish Homeownership Councilor  ext #18

Community Building

Dominique Resendes: Manager of Community Building  ext #15 

Julius Searight: Sankofa Market Manager ext #11

Sankofa WIC

Ineida Rocha: Sankofa WIC Coordinator   ext #101

Jennifer Benitez: Sankofa WIC Nutritionist   ext #102

Joseline Mane: WIC Intake   ext #100

Dunamis Synergy

Maria Carvalho: Dunamis Initiative Director ext #19

Sonia Thomas: Parent Engagement Specialist ext #24 401-414-8151 

Claudette Bannerman: Lead Family Coach 401-414-8145

Melanie Borges: Family Coach

Jamal Johnson: Family Coach

Rose Phildor: Family Coach

Cathleen Williams: Family Coach

Real Estate Development

Derek Winslow: Real Estate Developer   ext #10 

AmeriCorps Volunteers

Michelle Frea: Sankofa VISTA

Lisa Galloway: Accessing Home/ Rent RIte coach   ext #30