Staff Bios

Grace Morris

Executive Director – Heritage Housing Partners Corporation

Grace Morris

Grace Morris has been the Executive Director for Heritage Housing Partners Corporation (HHP Corp) since 2008. In this position, she oversees the ownership and management of 150 units of affordable housing primarily for elderly and disabled residents in Columbia. Ms. Morris has worked in the field of affordable housing since 1989. Prior to her current position, she worked for the National Association of County Community and Economic Development (NACCED), a public interest group representing county housing and community development departments. She managed several housing programs (CDBG, HOME and weatherization) for Summit County, Ohio. Ms. Morris was the Director of a $50 million performance based contract for the Office of Community Planning and Development in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in Washington, DC where she oversaw numerous projects for the department and led 65 staff members in three locations. Ms. Morris is actively involved in the Howard County community. She is a graduate of Leadership Howard County, Class of 2010. Currently, she is a volunteer board member for Rebuilding Together Howard County and the Board President of the Association of Community Services (ACS), the umbrella organization for nonprofits in Howard County.  She also serves as a Member of Howard County’s Housing and Community Development Advisory Board.

Ms. Morris, her husband John, a civil engineer and Deputy Branch Chief for the National Cancer Institutes, and their daughter Sara, live in Elkridge. Ms. Morris has lived in Howard County for 20 years.

Ms. Morris has an undergraduate degree in political science and history and Master of Public Administration.

Marcus Smith

Senior Property Manager

Mr. Smith joined Heritage Housing Partners in October 2010. With over 18 years of affordable housing experience, Mr. Smith oversees the property management, and overall HUD compliance as Senior Property Manager with Heritage Housing Partners.

Mr. Smith received a Master’s of Real Estate Development (MRED) with a concentration in affordable housing programs from the University of Maryland at College Park in 2009. His prior employment includes being a Housing Specialist with the City of Annapolis Housing Authority, the City of Alexandria Housing Authority, the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County and as a consultant working with HUD central on the Rental Housing Integrity Improvement Project (RHIIP). Mr. Smith also has a Section 8 Housing Manager certification through the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO).

Bateya Jackson

Property Manager

Ms. Jackson joined Heritage Housing Partners in June 2022.  She oversees the Pue Fulton House, Oakland Place and CHAI Hope Houses as the Property Manager with Heritage Housing Partners.
Ms. Jackson brings more than 3 years of HUD/Property Manager experience.  She obtained her Certified Occupancy Specialist certification in 2020 and her Assisted Multifamily Housing Manager certification in 2021. She is passionate about helping others and is excited about joining the Heritage Housing Partners team.
Bateya is a lifelong resident of Baltimore City. She enjoys cheering for her favorite sports team, the Baltimore Ravens and spending time with family and friends.
She is also a dog-mom to her 9-year-old yorkie, Tank.

Samira (Sam) Copeland

Assistant Property Manager

Sam joined the HHP Team in March. She has extensive experience in property management working as an Occupancy Specialist, Recertification Specialist and a Community Manager for over 10 years before coming to work for HHP Corp. Sam has experience with Tax Credit and HUD properties. She will also be handling resident services for HHP. Sam loves to travel, says she is a foodie and loves to shop. She also loves animals and is mom to two Yorkies: Chloe & Sniffles and 3 turtles: Django, Shrek, & Fiona.

Dana Lyons

Accounting Manager

Dana Lyons is the Accounting Manager for Heritage Housing Partners. Employed with Heritage Housing Partners since 2014, she oversees all areas of accounting to include accounts payable, receivables, insurance compliance, and annual audits. Dana also often serves in the role of office manager for HHP headquarters.

Previously, Dana was a small business owner of two businesses in Carroll County, MD, with over 18 years of accounting, marketing, and business skills that are well utilized for our company.