Since 2015, Nick Cangelosi has played a critical role in creating development opportunities in the Northeast, primarily his home state of New Jersey, as senior vice president of development at The Michaels Organization. He has been a leader in redeveloping various neighborhoods in Camden, helping to provide 1,190 homes with a $398 million investment in these neighborhoods. Overall, he has led Michaels’ development efforts spanning over 2,400 affordable housing units in the Northeast. Prior to joining Michaels, he served as project director for Conifer Realty and a senior project coordinator at the Camden County Improvement Authority.
How did you get your start? “My father worked in community development, and he gravitated to affordable housing development. I never knew what he really did. As a young child, I ignorantly defined him as a general contractor even though he was a real estate developer. I ultimately went off to college and was interested in real estate largely because of my exposure to my father. I always had a passion for thinking about public policy and how it makes an impact on the lives of families. Affordable housing, in my opinion, is the confluence of real estate and public policy. As an affordable housing developer, you must focus on everything a traditional developer must effectuate such as entitlements, raising capital, and design, and we also have a profound opportunity to impact lives through policy programs at local, county, state, and federal levels.”
Accomplishments: “Helping the team secure two Choice Neighborhoods Implementation grants in Camden. The Clement T. Branch Village public housing redevelopment was completed three years ago with 255 brand-new homes, a community health center, and medical spaces. It was a 1950s’ rundown superblock that was largely crime-ridden with uninhabitable homes, and we redeveloped that entire community. It was an amazing transformation; it’s a team approach. Similarly, we secured our second grant to transform Ablett Village, the oldest public housing community in Camden and redevelop it with state-of-the-art housing for families and seniors in partnership with schools and medical professionals. We've lifted so many lives as a result of these developments. It’s what I have been most proud of here at Michaels.”
Recent lesson learned: “Failure is good. I have learned that failure and success are closely aligned. If I’m not failing, I'm not succeeding. I’m not pushing myself and thinking outside the box. There was an entitlement situation a couple of years ago that didn't come to fruition the way I had planned. It was a major setback from a project standpoint, but I learned so much from it. I'm a much better real estate developer today as a result of this issue. Don't try to compartmentalize and forget your trials and tribulations—learn from them.”
Family: His wife and two children ages 7 and 9. “Spending time with my amazing wife and children provides me with the inspiration and focus to persevere through the challenges of developing affordable housing."
Organizations: Chairman of Camden Special Services District; chairman of Camden Business Improvement District; chairman of New Life Community Development Organization; board member of The Heart of Camden; member of Rutgers-Camden School of Nursing's Leadership Team; Steering Committee member for The Joint Board–Rowan University/Rutgers.