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Edwardsville woman chosen to chair national development organization

NEW YORK – The National Development Council, a mission-based, non-profit community development organization, has selected Saundra Hudson of Edwardsville to serve as its chairperson of the board.

Hudson is the first woman and minority to chair the organization. She is replacing Samuel S. Beard, founder of The National Development Council.

“I am honored to be NDC’s new chair and humbled to follow Samuel Beard in the role,” Hudson said. “I believe that NDC represents the best of what a national for-purpose economic and community development organization can offer and successfully deliver: affordable housing, small business lending, economic revitalizing and professional training for everyone from developers to practitioners.”

Hudson is known extensively in the Metro East area for community service.

In New York, while at IBM Corporation, she worked in technology as a systems programmer. Later, she returned to her roots in St. Louis where she continued in the technology field with Olin Corp. as manager of Information Systems. She left the corporate world to purchase a franchise which she operated for eight years.

She served for a time as president and CEO of the Madison County Urban League. Judge Duane Bailey, board chairman of the Madison County Urban League, credited her with stabilizing the organization during her tenure and expanding the group’s work into developing affordable housing.

“Saundra Hudson brought a steady hand to the ship of the Madison County Urban League,” he said. Her work in the Madison County Affordable Housing market was where Ms. Hudson was first introduced to NDC nearly 20 years ago.

Hudson was invited to join the NDC board in 2007.

Hudson has served as an elected member of the Edwardsville School Board for 16 years, as well as a member of the three-person financial oversight panel appointed by the Illinois Board of Education for East St. Louis Public Schools.

Hudson also serves on the boards of the Alton Memorial Hospital Foundation, the Affordable Housing Development Corporation, and the Alton Women’s Home Association, and on the Administrative Board of her church.

Said NDC President Robert W. Davenport: “Her insight on issues facing our communities is thoughtful and inspiring. She is a strong, passionate, and fearless leader and has been a true partner to NDC over the years.”

About National Development Council

Founded in 1969, the National Development Council is a national non-profit organization that has evolved into one of the most progressive and innovative community and economic development organizations in the country. It is a provider of financing, development expertise, technical assistance and training for community revitalization efforts throughout the U.S. NDC is headquartered in New York City with offices in Seattle, WA and Edgewood, KY. For more information visit

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