The Senate unanimously confirmed Shaun Donovan as secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) late Thurs., Jan. 22.

Donovan promised a "bold and comprehensive" plan to prevent foreclosures at his Senate confirmation hearing Jan. 13. His priorities also include renewing expiring Section 8 contracts, filling the unmet capital needs of public housing properties, and getting HUD's programs to work more smoothly with the latest generation of affordable housing programs such as the federal low-income housing tax credit.

Before his appointment, Donovan served as commissioner of the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development. He has also served as HUD's deputy assistant secretary for multifamily and at Prudential Mortgage Capital Co. as managing director of Federal Housing Administration lending and affordable housing investments.

Housing advocates have been uniformly positive about Donovan's nomination. "Shaun Donovan is a brilliant choice for HUD," says Sheila Crowley, president of the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

Bendix Anderson is a senior associate editor with AFFORDABLE HOUSING FINANCE magazine.