Hope springs eternal in Volusia County, thanks in large part to the vision and relentless efforts of Forough B. Hosseini, Vice President of ICI Homes. Forough, an entrepreneur, philanthropist and community leader, is responsible for bringing together representatives from the private and public sectors to convert a former elementary school into Hope Place, a family residential center that will serve 35+ homeless families and more than 32 unaccompanied youth. Hope Place, which opened January 30, 2018, is located in the former Hurst Elementary School, providing a family living center that offers temporary housing before quickly transitioning residents to permanent homes, with the goal of self-sufficiency.

Hope Place is a shining example of cooperation and collaboration between Forough, Volusia County Government, Halifax Urban Ministries (HUM) and the Hope Place Building Committee comprised of community volunteers, including many employees of ICI Homes. Together, this team navigated the process of deeding the former school to HUM, made a plan for the construction and renovation work, solicited donated materials and labor, and established an endowment to help fund future operations. Incredibly, under the leadership of Forough, almost all of the funding for the project has been through financial donations from the local community. Once complete, the 55,000 square foot assistance center will serve 170-200 individuals and will provide residents of the neighborhood with an exterior recreation area too.

Throughout the complex planning process, ShuffieldLowman attorneys Scott Cookson, Jim Washburn and Maia Albrecht have been privileged to provide pro bono legal services. Firm partner Scott Cookson has represented ICI Homes with the firm since 2012, and originally brought the Hope Place project to the attention of the firm.

Attorney Jim Washburn, Board Certified in Construction Law, assisted with the drafting of Hope Place’s agreement with the architect for design services and advised on how best to structure the agreement for construction services and helped prepare the construction management agreement. He then met with the selected construction manager and Hope Place representatives to review the contract and ensure that all parties understood its terms to help the project progress smoothly.

Attorney Maia Albrecht, working out of the firm’s Port Orange office, attended multiple Building Committee meetings and served as a liaison for legal work provided by the firm.

Headquartered in Daytona Beach, ICI Homes has been in business for more than 30 years, building more than 10,000 homes in forty prestigious communities throughout Florida, Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina.

ShuffieldLowman’s two offices in Volusia County are located in DeLand and Port Orange. The firm is a 40 attorney, full service, business law firm, practicing in the areas of real estate, corporate law, estate planning and litigation.