Paul A. Leonard directs the California operations of the Center for Responsible Lending, a national policy and research organization working on lending issues affecting low-wealth households. The Center is a non-profit, non-partisan research and policy organization dedicated to protecting homeownership and family wealth by working to eliminate abusive financial practices. CRL is affiliated with Self-Help, one of the nation’s largest community development financial institutions. CRL has offices in Durham NC, Washington, DC and has recently opened its California office in Oakland.
Prior to joining the Center, Mr. Leonard was an independent policy consultant working on housing, community development and social welfare issues, based in Berkeley, California. Mr. Leonard’s research topics have included the effectiveness of national housing preservation policies, gentrification in American cities, the impacts of financial modernization legislation on lending under the Community Reinvestment Act, and the impact of welfare reform in urban areas. His clients have included the Brookings Institution Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy, the U.S. Treasury Department, the Low Income Investment Fund, the MacArthur Foundation, Bank of America, and PolicyLink.
Mr. Leonard also served as an Assistant Agency Director for Workforce and Human Services at the Alameda County, CA Social Services Agency from 2002 – 2004.
Mr. Leonard previously served as the Acting Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy Development at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development from 1994 through 1998. Prior to his appointment at HUD, Mr. Leonard was a senior research analyst at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a non-profit policy and research organization in Washington DC.