• John Franklin Hay
    John Franklin Hay
    Executive Director
  • Renee Davis
    Renee Davis
    Housing Advocate
  • John Franklin HayExecutive Director

    John was introduced to the Near East in 1987 by his work with Shepherd Community. He’s been working and serving the community ever since, from frequent participation in Caulk of the Town and NESCO events, to serving as Executive Director of the John H. Boner Community Center and Horizon House.

    John has been inspired by the Near East community’s tenacity, diversity, creativity, and acceptance. John is excited to be in a position to give back and contribute to the progress and future of the neighborhood.

    Renee DavisHousing Advocate

    Renee is from Indianapolis, a graduate of Indiana University, and currently enrolled in Ball State University’s graduate program for urban planning. In 2017-18, Renee served as a Public Ally with NEAR before taking the role of Housing Advocate in July 2018. Renee recently bought a home and lives on the Near Eastside in the Grace Tuxedo neighborhood.

  • Susan Vogt
    Susan Vogt
    Economic Development Director
  • Joe Smoker
    Joe Smoker
    Housing Development Director
  • Susan VogtEconomic Development Director

    Susan is a long-time resident of the Cottage Home Neighborhood (CoHo!) and brings over 20 years of community economic development and nonprofit experience to this new position. Susan is leading NEAR’s effort to put the Promise Zone economic development challenges into play, support existing Near Eastside businesses, and bring a new level of vibrancy and opportunity to our commercial corridors. Susan teaches pilates classes at the Boner Fitness & Learning Center in the Chase Legacy Facility.

    Joe SmokerHousing Development Director

    As a homeowner in the Near East’s Holy Cross Neighborhood, Joe is already invested in our community. As an experienced community planning and development professional, he’s committed to helping NEAR work with neighbors to achieve excellent outcomes as a great place in our city. Joe guides NEAR’s property and housing development efforts.

    Outside of work, Joe is a runner and an avid cyclist. Actually, he’s an ultra-marathoner, with 50-mile and 100-mile races under his belt. You’ll see him on his bicycle around the community, commuting and advocating for our city to become ever more bicycle friendly.

  • Heather Jernigan
    Heather Jernigan
    Office & Grants Manager
  • Heather JerniganOffice & Grants Manager

    Heather Jernigan comes to near from the State of Indiana’s Small Business Development Center. She’s an Eastside resident and is ready to work with neighbors and community development funders to support NEAR’s neighborhood revitalization initiatives.