Assistant Secretary for HUD Policy Development and Research: Who Is Seth Appleton?

Thursday, February 08, 2018
Seth Appleton (photo: Bisnow)

Seth Daniel Appleton, who has spent much of his career as a staffer to congressmen, was nominated January 26, 2018, to lead the Office of Policy Development and Research in the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Established in 1973, the office is a research, survey, study, and analysis support system for HUD. It assists in oversight of the United States government-sponsored Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac housing mortgage loan enterprises, and it is meant to facilitate the formation of partnerships between universities and communities so they can jointly address urban problems.


Appleton, born January 28, 1982, grew up in University City, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis. His parents are Susan and Bob Appleton and Seth has a brother, Jesse. Appleton graduated from Mary Institute St. Louis Country Day School in 2000 and went on to Stanford. There, he earned a B.A. in history in 2004.


After graduation, Appleton worked for a time for Missouri state Rep. Jason Brown (R-Platte City). However, Appleton had interned at the Department of State and in the U.S. Senate while in college, and he made his way back to Washington, first on the staff of Rep. Sam Graves (R-Missouri) before joining Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer’s office as a legislative assistant in 2009. He had previously worked as Luetkemeyer’s policy director during his 2008 Congressional campaign. Appleton was promoted to be Luetkemeyer’s chief of staff in August 2009. He remained with Luetkemeyer until leaving in August 2017 for HUD.


Appleton landed at HUD as acting assistant secretary and general deputy assistant secretary for congressional and intergovernmental relations, a post he held at the time of his nomination.


Appleton is married to the former Brooke Shupe, who is chief of staff to the assistant secretary of agriculture.

-Steve Straehley


To Learn More:

Brooke Shupe and Seth Appleton (St. Joseph News-Press)

Official Announcement


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