Katherine M. O'Regan, Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research
Dr. Katherine O’Regan serves as Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. In this capacity, she leads a team of experienced social scientists and researchers who help inform both the development and implementation of policy to improve life in American communities through conducting, supporting, and sharing research, surveys, demonstrations, program evaluations, and best practices. She was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on April 28, 2014.
Prior to her appointment, Dr. O’Regan was Professor of Public Policy and Planning at New York University’s Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, where she has also held various administrative positions, including Associate Dean for Faculty from 2002-2004. She holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of California at Berkeley and a B.S. from the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania. In addition, she served on the faculty of the Yale School of Management for ten years prior to joining the Wagner faculty in 2000. During her academic career, she taught courses in microeconomics, poverty, program evaluation, and urban economics, and has received teaching awards from Berkeley, Yale, and NYU.
Dr. O’Regan’s research broadly focuses on low income communities and affordable housing policy. She has studied how low-income neighborhoods change, what happens to residents when they do, and what stimulates economic improvement. She has also examined the impacts of crime in urban settings and how it both shapes and is shaped by residential decisions. Her recent research includes work on a variety of affordable housing topics, from the Low Income Tax Credit and its spatial implications for residents and housing markets, to whether the presence of housing voucher households contributes to neighborhood crime rates.
Among others, she has served on the board of The Reinvestment Fund, the advisory board for NYU’s McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research, and the editorial board for the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management. She has been a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and the Economic Studies group at the Brookings Institution, and spent two years as an analyst at the Department of Energy’s Office of Hearing and Appeals prior to graduate school.