David McGinnis came to what is now the NW Metro Atlanta chapter that includes Douglas County three-and-a-half years ago, following a 30 year career in community banking in Cobb County. During that time, he had accrued 14 years of real estate development.
Today, as president and CEO of the chapter that also encompasses Cobb and Paulding counties, McGinnis said he gets "an opportunity to use everything he learned over 34 years."
Douglas County once had its own thriving Habitat for Humanity organization, housed in an office with the Douglas County Chamber, he said. In 2008, Douglas County folded into what is now NW Metro Habitat.
Since that time, the organization closed its Douglas County office in 2013.
"We haven't built in Douglas County in several years," said McGinnis.
However, this is about to change in a significant way.
Plans are well underway for Habitat for Humanity to build an eight-lot subdivision off of Chicago Avenue in Douglasville specifically for veterans called "Veterans Place."
The project, said McGinnis, has been in the works for three-and-a-half years and will consist of eight fee-simple detached homes, ranging from 1,444- to 1,547-square feet.
Land for the Habitat veterans project was purchased from the housing authority, and all that remains to be completed to begin construction is a go-ahead by the Douglasville-Douglas County Water and Sewer Authority to complete its land disturbance process.
McGinnis said he hopes to start construction on the veterans subdivision by August.
Gil Shearouse, executive director of the WSA said, "The Veteran's Park project by Habitat for Humanity is a great example of urban redevelopment, fills such a critical need and serves a most deserving group. While all projects in our community are important and receive our best service and response, this project is a true joy to work on. Mr. McGinnis and the team at Habitat for Humanity have been great and are providing an excellent product. I look forward to this project getting completed, and especially can't wait to see these houses bring occupied by some of our well deserving veterans."
Habitat has worked alongside Jonathan Lynn, the city of Douglasville's community service director who is leaving to become the town manager in Tyrone, to complete the necessary steps to turn the project into reality.
"Jonathan, the mayor and the city council have been great to work with," McGinnis said.