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RELEASE: Piedmont Native Returns Home for the Holidays

For Immediate Release: Piedmont Native Returns Home for the Holidays

DATE: December 20, 2022

Charlottesville, Va: Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville is thrilled to be welcoming home four homeowners in the City’s JPA Neighborhood in time for the holidays this season. 

One of those homeowners, Lolita Johnson, is literally returning home to her childhood road – Piedmont Avenue – where she spent her early years in a rental with her family. Now, she, along with her sixteen year-old daughter Demareya, and her 1 year old Yorkie, Duke, is settling into their new home with ease.  

“I feel a sense of peace that I have never ever felt,” said Johnson. “And now, we want to have a [holiday] tradition here. My whole family is coming. We want to bake cookies and do sing-alongs together. My mom, my dad, my sister with her two boys, and a daughter on the way!” 

Proximity to the University of Virginia is a key component of this new in-fill neighborhood given that a large percentage of UVA’s workforce cannot afford housing near their jobs.

“I work in pre-surgery at UVA,” said Johnson. “I can walk to work! If I have to walk home I can. Or I can catch the bus. The convenience is wonderful.” 

“These four homes are part of an eight house neighborhood we built this year,” said Dan Rosensweig. “It’s really exciting to think that we’ve been able to help Lolita return ALL the way home to where she grew up and where she works. Given the challenge of finding housing near UVa, we prioritized development of this land. Half of the families moving into the Piedmont homes work at UVa.” 

At her home dedication, Johnson reflected on the day she received word about being selected for Habitat homeownership, after being prompted to apply by her sister. It was an emotional moment. She said she wants the community to know that “Habitat is a big blessing. Especially for a single parent that has to do everything on her own.” 


For additional quotes, information, or interviews, please contact: 


Angela Guzman, Communications and Annual Giving Manager / (703) 731-0462



About Habitat:  Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville brings people together to build and rebuild homes and communities while catalyzing new pathways to safe, decent affordable housing. Our work has evolved from building one house at a time to developing vibrant, sustainable, mixed-income communities, where local families can achieve their dreams of homeownership. Since our founding in 1991, we have built more than 280 new homes and safely housed over 2,000 neighbors, thanks to the commitment and dedication of our thousands of volunteers and supporters.

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    Charlottesville, VA

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