Michael Houlemard, Jr. | John Lynch Base Redevelopment Leadership Award

Executive Officer, Fort Ord Reuse Authority 

Ford Ord, Calif., was one of the largest U.S. military bases to ever be shut down. It spanned 28,000 acres across three counties when it was closed Sept. 30, 1994. Since then, Michael Houlemard, Jr., Ford Ord Reuse Authority (FORA) executive officer, has led the planning, financing and implementation of the former base’s redevelopment. His dedication has been a key driver in creating spaces and opportunities that will benefit the surrounding communities for years to come.  

Today, the former base is home to a university, residential developments, a shopping district and a clinic that serves both veterans and active duty service members. Every weekend, you'll find local residents enjoying the beaches, hiking and biking the trails, and visiting Fort Ord National Monument, with some of its trails boasting panoramic views of Monterey Bay.  

“When Fort Ord closed, I co-authored the legislation that sculpted a unique, multijurisdictional reuse authority to handle its reuse and redevelopment. The complicated management structure required a really skillful, multi-talented leader. We found that in Michael Houlemard. He gets results. The Fort Ord community of today is his legacy, and the community is grateful to him for his vision.”  

—Former U.S. Rep. Sam Farr (D-Calif.) 

(Above) Houelmard, second from right, helps break ground at the Central Coast Veterans Cemetery in March 2015. The cemetery opened in October 2016. Photo submitted.