With great sadness, HOMES announces the passing of one of its most devoted board members, Tom Matthews, on July 11th. Despite a long struggle with health problems, Tom remained an active volunteer and advocate for many causes. As a founding board member of HOMES, Tom championed the need for a diversity of housing types at Alameda Point to meet the needs of all Alamedans. In addition to serving on the HOMES board, Tom was vice-president of the Alameda Food Bank and president of Renewed Hope Housing Advocates. His work with Renewed Hope achieved a settlement with the City of Alameda which guaranteed that twenty-five percent of all new residential development would be affordable to moderate and low-income citizens.
Tom first came to Alameda in 1984 to assume the responsibilities of Executive Director at the Alameda Housing Authority. His most fulfilling achievement during this time was securing funding for, and enabling construction of, Independence Plaza, an independent living complex for Alameda seniors. Prior to retirement he was Director of Housing Management and Development for Rubicon Programs, Inc. in Richmond, serving homeless and disabled people.
Tomís professional career also included being Program Director for Visitation Valley Community Center and Director of Echo Housing in Hayward. His career in housing authority management and development of low-income and affordable housing spanned the communities of Alameda and Los Angeles counties and the city of Livermore.
In his private life, Tom was devoted to his wife, Nancy, his children Sally and Glynis, and his grandchildren Andrew, Ian and Hannah. In addition to being with his family, he enjoyed sailing, good food and drink, watching the ocean crashing onto shoreline boulders, and traveling in Europe.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Alameda Food Bank, Renewed Hope Housing Advocates, Alameda Red Cross, and HOMES.
Family and friends are invited to attend a memorial service at the Independent Plaza Community Room, 703 Atlantic Avenue, Alameda on Sunday, August 19, at 2:00 p.m.