Sam Betters worked for the Loveland Housing Authority for 42 years, and continues to work toward helping families find affordable housing even after his retirement as executive director a year ago.
His dedication has provided safe, comfortable homes for thousands of residents, and led to a culture of service at the organization which remains to this day.
So a ceremony Thursday afternoon dedicated “Family,” a bronze sculpture by Loveland artist Kendra Fleischman, that was placed outside of the Housing Authority office last week in honor of Betters’ service to the community.
The Housing Authority provides low and moderate-income residents with quality housing opportunities, and has since its beginnings in 1972.
“We really weren’t developers, we were housers, and there’s a difference because we used the build environment as a means, and not an end. It was just a means to help create community and help create home, and that was really important to us,” Betters said.
The art installation features two parents holding a swinging child and clasping hands with one another, which demonstrates the support the organization has provided to the community and the interconnected nature that makes Loveland special.
Fleischman was inspired to submit her piece once she saw how these themes tied in with the authority’s mission. “The idea of a community, not just a family, people coming together and supporting each other so that this all can happen and have a joyous result. So many families are struggling, and what Sam has done helping the Housing Authority and everything they do getting people into homes, giving them that security and that strength, the whole piece to me just fit perfectly.”
Betters, who also accepted a sized-down maquette of the piece, said he was both honored and humbled to accept the award. He credits the team he led over the years for the authority’s impact both in housing those in need and spreading a sense of community service.
“I was the lucky one that got to be the lead singer. But what we’re really celebrating here is the work over the last 42 years of some really passionate men and women that I had the great fortune of working with over those years,” Betters said.
Design and production of the $30,000 sculpture began in April. It was purchased with the help of donations from the city of Loveland and several community groups and members.