Earth Talks 2023 - Keynote Speaker Patience Malaba

Headshot image of Patience Malaba, Earth Talks 2023 Keynote Speaker

Care for our Common Home: Home is where it starts

The dire perils facing the planet mean that the fuse is short and burning; and we must be resolved to make a difference. As we are now going into the third year that the IPCC estimated as of 2020, that “we have seven years before we reach a tipping point where we cannot reverse the damage we have done to the earth", bolder action is needed. Without a far-reaching response, a changing climate will undermine the conditions that have allowed us to thrive on our planet. To tackle this crisis at the nexus of the affordable housing and racial equity crisis, we need to make fundamental changes to our planning, shift how we create sustainable built environments, and invest resources to advance social justice. The tools we need to take action are in our hands.

About Patience Malaba

Patience is the Executive Director of the Housing Development Consortium. She oversees the 200-membership association which is a nationally acclaimed and diverse network of major housing developers, financial institutions, architects, building contractors, attorneys, accountants, service providers, local housing authorities, and government agencies and businesses committed to producing, preserving, and increasing equitable access to affordable homes in King County.

She is recognized by regional leaders for building effective coalitions, synthesizing, and distilling complex information, leading a bold agenda for making systems work for the people they are intended to serve, and working collaboratively to secure significant policy achievements that enrich and scale equitable access to affordable housing. She is named as one of the 2023 Puget Sound Business Journal’s top “40 Under 40” and was the 2020 Bullitt Foundation Environmental award winner for her leadership in addressing the intersecting crises of affordable housing, racial equity, and climate change. A commitment to environmental and economic justice and her passion for an equitable society led her directly to the affordable housing sector.

Known as a strategic, results-driven, and collaborative leader, she uses her influence and voice to increase housing affordability and brings years of experience as a community organizer. In her tenure heading HDC, Patience has used her experience and expertise to spearhead an ambitious agenda for HDC and recognizes the dire perils facing the planet; she knows the fuse is short and burning; and she is resolved to make a difference. She is committed to deep green, sustainable building practices. A champion of climate justice, Patience grew up in and received her first college degree in, Zimbabwe. In 2021, she graduated from Seattle University's Master of Public Administration program.

Patience seats on multiple boards, including the Transportation Choices Coalition, Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County, National Alliance of Community Economic Development (NACEDA), Sound Communities Steering Community, formerly Seattle’s Housing Levy Technical Advisory Committee, Housing Levy Oversight Committee, PSRC’s Growth Management Policy Board, Co-Chair of the Puget Sound Regional Council’s Regional Transit Oriented Development (TOD)Committee, Former Chair of the Seattle Redistricting Commission, and is a member of the Communities of Opportunity Governance Group. Under Patience’s leadership, HDC has received the Cooper Award (2022), and the Voices for Fairness Award (2022).