Company: Cinnaire

Position: Vice President, Underwriting, Equity Products

Location:  Lansing, Detroit, Chicago, Wilmington, DE or another Cinnaire office

The Company

In 1993, Cinnaire founder and CEO Mark McDaniel launched a tax credit fund to support much needed affordable housing in Michigan with a table, a phone, and a Rolodex. Since the first days, Cinnaire’s purpose has been about changing lives and transforming struggling neighborhoods into thriving communities. Twenty-five years later, Mark is still at the helm and Cinnaire has expanded to more than 100 team members with six offices and programs in nine states. Cinnaire has invested more than $4.2 billion in community revitalization and leveraged more than $7.3 billion in community impact across its territories, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Delaware, Eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland. Cinnaire is a nonprofit, full-service financial firm providing lending, tax credit programs, real estate and community development consulting services, and commercial financing.

Lending Products

 As a full-service Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), Cinnaire Lending works with socially conscious investors and mission-focused organizations to create out-of-the-box lending options to support housing and community development work. Its approach is based on nurturing partnerships and the ability to leverage donor and investment money and combine it with larger sources of capital. Its primary debt products are pre-development loans, acquisition financing, permanent financing, and flexible financing leveraging its membership in Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago.

Tax Credit Investment Tools

Cinnaire has directed more than $3.9 billion to over 700 development projects, building 47,000 units of affordable housing. It invests in a range of developments that include affordable housing for families, homeless individuals and veterans, the elderly, and disabled. Cinnaire currently has 61 tax credit equity funds under management.

Development Consulting Services

 A nonprofit partner for its development clients, Cinnaire Solutions has evolved into a capable, effective agent throughout its footprint in the Upper Midwest and Mid-Atlantic. Cinnaire Solutions has experience in historic adaptive reuse, acquisition and rehabilitation, mixed-use, technical consultation, LIHTCs, and market rate developments serving target populations.

Commercial Financing

In addition to affordable housing, Cinnaire provides financing for community facilities.  As a national, certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), Cinnaire is a trusted partner with other nonprofits, government and mission-driven businesses to connect communities, with capital that generates economic opportunity and stability. Its community facility loans prioritize projects that support social benefits to communities, includes senior debt, private equity investments, bridge financing, and mezzanine debt.

The Position

The Vice President, Equity Underwriting (VPEU) leads and mentors the team that performs analysis of real estate equity investments, primarily associated with the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program and Historic Tax Credits (HTC).  The VPEU assesses preliminary feasibility, adherence to underwriting guidelines and advances the transaction through underwriting process and closing. This role plays a critical function as a liaison between the origination team and the internal approval, closing and portfolio management functions. Cinnaire’s company culture emphasizes a focus on its clients and the VPEU is a key link between the client’s needs and delivering quality and sound equity products.

The VPEU will manage a team of five or six analysts and will have ongoing interaction and collaboration with the full team involved in business development and servicing. Cinnaire recognizes the need to balance the prerequisites of its developer clients with the expectations of its investors. The VPEU will help to meet its fiduciary responsibilities to its investors and deliver best-in-class financial products.

The VPEU reports to the Executive Vice President, Underwriting & Credit Risk and assists in delivering underwriting results that align with the organization’s strategic objectives. Ideally, the VPEU will be based at one of Cinnaire’s primary offices, but they may also be based in one of their other offices including Grand Rapids, Indianapolis or Madison.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Plans, implements, and oversees underwriting analysis workflows, systems, and business processes in alignment with organizational goals and technology advancements in the organizations.
  • Ensures adherence to equity underwriting guidelines in accordance with investor expectations and industry standards and approves exceptions to such guidelines.
  • Approves equity proposals to ensure acceptable risk tolerance.
  • Supervises and supports the analysts and associate analyst.
  • Develops and monitors team and individual goals of the analyst team
  • Develops and implements an effective training program for members of the analyst team.
  • Maintains technical expertise in the LIHTC program and provides guidance to team.
  • Ensures quality control and accuracy of the team’s work product.
  • Acts as liaison between the Analyst, Business Development, and Capital Management teams.
  • Develops and maintains effective business relationships with developers, investors, accountants, attorneys, consultants, property managers, housing finance agencies, lenders, and other related parties.

Qualifications and Skills

 Experience:    Minimum 10 years’ experience in real estate development, finance, investment, and underwriting with a deep understanding of affordable housing and the tax credit industry

Education:     Bachelor’s Degree in real estate, finance, business, economics, or related field.

Professional Experience

  • Expert knowledge of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program, including the technical legal and accounting regulations that govern its successful use, from both the lender and investor perspectives.
  • Ability to provide leadership development including coaching and developing others by seeking to understand their strengths and development areas.
  • Strong analysis and synthesis skills including interpreting data and information from multiple sources and translating them into coherent messages that inform decisions.

Personal Attributes

  • Ability to bring insight to action by acting on conviction and advancing from concept to implementation toward a goal; drawing upon knowledge and professional judgment to orchestrate the steps required to get results.
  • Someone who can bring intellectual agility by flexing and adapting thinking skills to meet the needs of different situations and circumstances; expanding problem solving to include multiple approaches or methodologies.


For more information on this opportunity, please contact Terra Search Partners:

 Greg Melanson, Partner, 202.843.9129 or greg@terrasearchpartners.com

Ally Sherman, Principal, 202.843.9127 or ally@terrasearchpartners.com