Inspired by the organization’s devotion to public service, Damon Burns became the President and CEO of the Finance Authority of New Orleans about two years ago. Since that time, he has furthered the organization’s mission to provide a better quality of life for all residents of the Crescent City.

A housing and development finance agency, the Finance Authority of New Orleans has been in operation since 1978. The agency provides financial programs targeted at issues surrounding home ownership, making sure families in lower and moderate incomes have affordable home access. The goal is to not only to offer these families homes, but also to support the economic development of other businesses and organizations in surrounding areas. Overall, FANO is in the business of building entire communities.

For many first-time homebuyers, entering the real estate market is an intimidating and overwhelming task. But thanks to FANO’s homebuyer education programs, potential homeowners can learn about credit, mortgage loans and finances in a helpful environment. The courses are offered both in-person and online, making the process of buying a home more accessible to many New Orleanians.

Many factors have complicated the home buying process in recent years. Stagnant incomes, combined with an ever-increasing cost of living, have left many families feeling like the idea of homeownership is an impossibility. As Burns explained, plenty of families are working extremely hard to keep New Orleans open and operating, but incomes are not as strong as they once were when compared to the cost of living. FANO and its programs exist to help these families learn more about the homeownership opportunities that are available to them, and help turn the dream of owning a home into a reality.

But homes aren’t the only focus of FANO. Burns was also careful to stress the communal approach that his organization takes to its projects.

“Our purpose is to create a better quality of life for all residents by making investments that benefit the community overall,” says Burns. For entrepreneurs, business owners and home buyers alike, the Finance Authority of New Orleans is a dedicated partner. As Burns says, he wants the FANO to be around for another 40 to 50 years to support New Orleans.

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