City of Austin names new Homeless Strategy Officer

The City of Austin has selected a new Homeless Strategy Officer. Dianna Grey will begin her new duties on January 4.

Grey will be taking over the position after the first Homeless Strategy Officer, Lori Pampilo Harris, transitioned to a consultant role instead of a full-time City employee due to "family obligations" in October 2019


Dianna Grey (City of Austin)


Under the direction of Austin Public Health Director Stephanie Hayden, the city says the Homeless Strategy Officer coordinates the City’s homeless response activities among multiple departments to ensure a seamless approach and response.

"I’m so happy to have Dianna join the Austin Public Health team. Her experience working in the field of homeless and housing services over the years in Austin and other major cities in Texas makes her a valuable asset to the Homeless citywide team," said Hayden in a release. "Dianna authored the first City of Austin and Travis County Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) strategy that lead to a financial goal to secure 350 PSH units. Her experience will help us make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring in Austin."

RELATED: FOX 7 Discussion: National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week

RELATED: Austin makes changes to cold weather shelters to prevent spread of COVID-19

The city says addressing the issue of homelessness is a top priority as set out in its Strategic Direction 2023. In early 2020, the City established the Homeless Services Division (HSD) within Austin Public Health to coordinate homelessness efforts across City departments and with community partners.

"I’m honored and excited to be joining the City of Austin’s efforts to end homelessness in our community," said Grey. "There is much work ahead, but I’m confident that Austin is equipped to meet this challenge. I look forward to collaborating with talented City staff, dedicated service providers, and community stakeholders to achieve our shared goal to ensure all Austinites have access to a safe and dignified place to call home."

RELATED: Austin's homeless dilemma moves back to front burner

RELATED: HUD Secy Ben Carson pitches new homelessness strategy

The city says that since 2014, Grey has been an independent consultant in private practice, working with nonprofits, homeless coalitions, and government entities to advance affordable and supportive housing. From 2008 to 2014, she was Director of the Texas office of Corporation for Supportive Housing, where she led public policy efforts, provided technical assistance, and advised on capacity building and project financing across the state, with a special focus on Dallas, Ft. Worth, Austin, and Houston.

She is also a 2001 graduate of the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin.