YVHA BOARD MEMBERS

The Board of Directors govern and control all YVHA business affairs and properties and guide the strategic direction of the organization.

The board consists of volunteers who must work or live within the YVHA’s jurisdiction.

YVHA BOARD MEMBERS

The Board of Directors govern and control all YVHA business affairs and properties and guide the strategic direction of the organization.

The board consists of volunteers who must work or live within the YVHA’s jurisdiction.

Leah Wood

Board President

Leah Wood has 16 years of real estate experience including 14 years in the affordable housing industry. Most recently, Ms. Wood was the Director of Asset & Portfolio Management for Candeur Group, a boutique affordable housing investment and finance firm. Prior to joining Candeur Group, Leah was a Vice President of Asset Management for Boston Financial where she monitored 70+ low- income housing properties and was a member of the Special Asset Management Team overseeing “high risk” properties for the firm.

Ms. Wood also spent two years in the Boston Financial Acquisitions Group evaluating and underwriting potential Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) investments, with a focus on the California markets. Prior to working in affordable housing, Leah worked for Interstate Equities Corporation, a market-rate real estate investment firm based in Los Altos, CA where she was responsible for investor relations and underwriting real-estate investments. Ms. Wood holds Master of Business Administration and Masters in Real Estate degrees from the University of San Diego and a Bachelor of Business Administration from University of the Pacific.

Leah was appointed to the YVHA board in 2019 and is currently serving her second three year term. She serves as board president and was instrumental in the Brown Ranch Annexation Committee (BRAC) negotiations between the City of Steamboat Springs and the Yampa Valley Housing Authority.

When not advocating for housing for locals, Leah and her husband are raising their two young children and enjoying outdoor activities in the Yampa Valley.

Michael Ann LaMotte

Vice Chair

Originally from Louisiana, Michael fell in love early with the Yampa Valley, learning how to ski in Steamboat at age 4. She attended Louisiana State University and earned a degree in Disaster Science Management. She started her career in residential real estate with a desire to help young professionals achieve home ownership. It is her core belief that a resort economy cannot thrive without housing for local employees; in Michael’s view houses equal jobs, jobs equal opportunity, and opportunity where you live creates community.

With her passion, Michael then set her career sights on real estate development of housing for locals. From 2017 to 2021 she worked on the West Steamboat Neighborhoods project with developer Brynn Grey and was the Development Director for their other residential projects throughout Northwest Colorado until early 2023. In her current professional role as Director of Development for Steamboat Resort she plays a key role as a connector between Alterra Mountain Company’s development team, Steamboat Resort’s leadership team, and local agencies to complete the next generation of projects at the ski area. Michael was appointed to the YVHA board in 2019 and is serving her second three-year term, currently as the Vice Chair.

Her other civic involvement includes: the Steamboat Springs Chamber Board of Directors and the Routt County Economic Development Partnership Board of Directors. Michael is also the chair of the Economic Development Council. Her track record of dedication to her community was rewarded in 2021 when she was one of 20 individuals under 40 recognized for their positive impact on Steamboat.

When not working, she enjoys skiing, mountain biking, hikes with her Australian Labradoodle named Poppy, and traveling with her husband.

Cole Hewitt

Secretary/Treasurer

Always dedicated to his community, Cole joined the YVHA board in 2013, after moving to Steamboat Springs in 2011. He is passionate about the local and regional economy, specifically how housing impacts economic vitality and growth. He has 13 years of experience in debt, equity, and fixed income markets, which serves the YVHA board well.

Cole was the YVHA board president from 2018 – 2021 and now serves as the secretary and treasurer. He also serves on the grants committee of the Human Resource Coalition and is a board member of REPS and Lift Up. He was the chair of the Steamboat Springs Economic Development Council (EDC) and a member of the Chamber’s Young Professionals Network (YPN). When not volunteering, he has been the Chief Financial Officer for Yampa Valley Bank since 2018. Cole is a University of Wyoming graduate and has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Accounting.

He married Lauren in 2018 and they enjoy year round, outdoor activities in NW Colorado.

Tim Corrigan

Routt County Representative

Tim was re-elected as Routt County Commissioner in November 2020 after first being sworn into office in January 2013. He has lived in Clark, Stagecoach and Phippsburg and now lives just south of the town of Yampa on a small ranch where he helps his wife Donna with her quarter horse business and irrigates and harvests a hay crop.

Tim has owned and operated TIMCO Walls and Ceilings, a construction subcontracting business, since 1984. Tim and Donna have four children, all of whom started in kindergarten and graduated from Soroco Schools.

Tim is an avid backcountry skier, bicyclist and hockey player.

Dakotah McGinlay

City of Steamboat Springs Representative

Dakotah McGinlay outpaced three other candidates to earn a seat on City Council during the November 2021 election. Her campaign centered around community character, sustainability and health & safety. McGinlay’s journey into public service started when she was in middle school, raising money with passionate friends for Haitian tsunami victims, and to spread child abuse awareness. As a Colorado native, previous business owner and local farmer she understands small businesses and is committed to addressing the challenges they face.

At Colorado Mountain College, McGinlay served as president of the Beekeeping and Food Clubs, as well as a member of the local Amnesty International chapter. During her time on campus, she focused on zero waste initiatives, recycling study and compost education. In addition, she has worked with Yampa Valley Sustainability Council (YVSC), SoBoat (Sober Steamboat), Community Agriculture Alliance and the Humane Society, as well as several wildlife and marine conservation groups. She has fostered partnerships between agriculture outlets and Lift Up, Yampa Valley Autism Program, Community Cultivation, The Health Partnership and YVSC.

Roger Ashton

Board Member

Roger is a Colorado native who started taking winter vacations in Steamboat Springs with his family in the 1960’s. But it took him until 2014, after he had retired, to make the move to Steamboat. Prior to retirement, his career included remarkably diverse experiences in graphic design, advertising, marketing, management, finance, and communications in numerous industries. He has worked with local, regional, national, and international corporations within fast-moving start-ups as well as within more traditional corporate environs.

From his undergraduate days at the University of Colorado, there has always been a thread and connection to affordable housing. For the last ten years of his career, Roger managed communications for the IT Department at the University of California, Davis while actively working with, managing, and growing several Habitat for Humanity affiliates. Roger was appointed to the YVHA Board in 2015 and served as Board President from 2017 through 2019. He holds three degrees from the University of Colorado, a Bachelor’s in Environmental Design, a Masters in Business Administration and a Masters in Marketing.

When he’s not consumed with affordable housing issues, Roger enjoys everything the Yampa Valley offers with his partner Lynne, and their rescue dog, Remmy.

Jim Beers

Board Member

Jim is a relatively new resident of the Yampa Valley. Once retired, he and his wife, Valerie, moved to Steamboat in 2018 after living in Fort Collins for nearly four decades. They join their son and daughter-in-law, who have been Steamboat residents for more than 15 years. They also have a daughter who currently lives in Denver.

Jim’s working life included a lengthy career in radio, with stints at Colorado radio stations KTCL and KUNC, serving as News Director and on-air news/music host. He spent another decade at Colorado State University where he worked in the Department of Public Relations and the Office of Engagement and Extension. Since landing in Steamboat, Jim has become heavily involved in the community. He is a member of the Steamboat Springs School District’s Education Fund Board, a member of the Routt County Extension Advisory Committee, a former member of the Ski Town Rotary Club, an election judge, and youth sports official – refereeing both football and basketball.

Jim joined the Board in 2023 and is serving a three-year term. He wants to ensure that his son and daughter-in-law, and many other young people, have the opportunity to secure affordable, attainable housing thus contributing to the vitality of Steamboat Springs and the Yampa Valley.

Alison Brodie

Board Member

Alison Brodie started visiting Steamboat to ski when she was 7 years old and hasn’t missed a year since! Alison has been in property management for 15 years. As the Housing Manager of Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation for the past 14 years, her knowledge of the seasonal workforce housing needs as well as a deep understanding of the affordable housing needs of a resort community, results in meaningful contributions to the YVHA board’s Property Management Team.

With extensive board experience, she is a six year past board member of Routt County United Way, serving on the Executive Committee during that time. As a board member of 443 Oak Nonprofit Center, she was integral in the expansion of United Way and Integrated Community’s office space with their recent building addition. She served on the Routt County Community Housing Steering Committee in 2016 as a Seasonal Housing Working Group Member. This lead her to being a campaign committee member for the 5A for Homes ballot initiative, which successfully passed and now provides YVHA with a dedicated funding source for the development of affordable housing.

Alison was a 2018 “20 under 40” recipient. In her free time, Alison enjoys spending time with her husband, Nate, their son, Tucker and their dogs, Utah and Koda.

Catherine Carson

Board Member

Catherine is a  fourth generation Coloradan and has lived in Steamboat Springs for over twenty years.  She serves as the Policy Committee Chair for the Yampa Valley Housing Authority, actively tracking rate policy that will affect local affordable housing. Prior to moving to Steamboat Springs, she worked in the financial area of the energy industry from operational to executive levels and responsibilities.  She is an energized community activist and volunteer whose roles have included the Routt County United Way Board, Yampa Valley Sustainability Council Advisory Board, Yampa Valley Recycles Treasurer plus actively volunteering for local organizations including Lift Up of Routt County, Yampa River Botanic Park and more!

Catherine is active in local, district and state politics including leading local housing campaigns such as the 2017 YVHA mil levy and the 2022 and 2023 short term rental tax ballot issues.  She is a leader in the Routt County Democratic Party along with the Colorado Democratic Party local Senate, House and Judicial Districts.  She is passionate about housing policy and is an activist for local, state and national housing policy.

Catherine enjoys running, speed walking, skiing, hiking, snowshoeing and living in Colorado!

Cecilia Escobar

Board Member

Cecilia was born and raised in Mexico but fell in love with Colorado and moved here 15 years ago where she married a third generation Coloradan. Together with their children, they moved to Steamboat Springs in 2015.

Her desire to serve the community was passed on by both her grandmothers; one who was part of the first generation of women to attend University in Mexico and the first Mexican female elected as a federal deputy. Her maternal grandmother was also influential in the realm of civic duty, her favorite saying was passed on to Cecilia, “he who is not born to serve is not fit to live.” Raised with strong female role models, Cecilia is passionate about serving the Routt County community.

She was elected to the YVHA board in 2023 for a three year term. She is also a Steering Committee member of LatinXAlliance, served on the Steering Committee for Brown Ranch, and was a board member of Better Tomorrow. Cecilia has worked for UCHealth over the past four years in various capacities including serving as a medical interpreter. Additionally, she is actively involved as an interpreter for Comunidad Integrada. Cecilia has a Bachelor’s of Art in History and a Masters degree in Medieval Language, Literature and Culture as well as a Masters of Arts in American Fine and Decorative Arts.

Reese Freeman

Board Member

Reese is a second generation builder who was drawn to Steamboat Springs for its long winters and booming construction sector. He has first hand experience with housing insecurity and the unfortunate fact that sheltering yourself is not a guarantee in this town.

Though his personal housing story is not unique, his background and approach to creating housing for others is a little more nuanced. He owns and operates a consulting and management business where he leverages his leadership, network, and construction knowledge to help other builders and developers alike build better buildings.

Even in his free time you will still find him digesting information on building science, the business of construction, and housing economics. This passion he has as an advocate and an expert in housing is channeled towards helping to solve what he sees as the overarching problems of low production, lack of affordability, and low quality expectations in the construction industry.

When he is filling in the gaps in time, he loves to ride his snowboard, see his friends, and relax with his dog Maple.

Kathi Meyer

Board Member

In 1996, Kathi and her husband, Jim Peterson, moved to Steamboat Springs and she quickly became involved in the community. Kathi was elected twice to the Steamboat Springs City Council where her peers chose her to act as its President Pro-Tem. She also served two terms on the Steamboat Springs Planning Commission including as its chairperson. She is the former Board President of the Yampa Valley Housing Authority and has been part of the board since its inception in 2004. In 2017, Kathi was elected to the Colorado Municipal League Executive Board where she served as its treasurer, vice president and president.

Her commitment to affordable housing has spanned decades including the past President of the Routt County Habitat for Humanity, and the Regional Affordable Living Foundation, an organization that existed before YVHA. She spent 25 years in the banking and financial management field working for Colorado National Bank, GE Capital, and Southern California Savings.

Kathi Meyer was born and raised in the Chicago area which explains why she’s an avid Bears and Cubs fan. She has a Bachelors of Science degree in Business Administration from Bradley University. In her free time, she has embraced Steamboat’s ski culture serving as co-chair of several Nordic Combined World Cups, National Championships, and Continental Cups sponsored by the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club. She also served as a FIS official for the Nordic Combined events at the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics.

Kate Nowak

Board Member

Kate Nowak has served as Executive Director of the United Way for ten years. As United Way’s Executive Director, she managed the housing instability task force, completed a successful capital campaign to create a permanent home for United Way in Steamboat and brought the Dolly Parton Imagination Library to Routt County. Her leadership was sought to help merge Moffat County United Way with Routt County United Way to create the United Way of the Yampa Valley. Her legacy of community commitment and volunteer work was recognized when she received the Hazie Werner Award in 2023.

Kate has worked in nonprofit management for 22 years. She also has corporate experience in management, training and development, HR and sales, working with the companies, Dayton Hudson, AT&T Agency and Monet Jewelers. She was born and raised on the southwest side of Chicago, lived in Texas, Minnesota, Illinois before moving to Colorado.

Kate has lived in the Yampa Valley for 26 years with her husband, Jim and has two stepsons and three beautiful granddaughters.

Patrick Phillips - YVHA Board Member

Patrick Phillips

Board Member

Patrick has had a long career in the economic analysis of real estate, land use, and economic development initiatives. Most recently, he served as the Global CEO of the Urban Land Institute (ULI), the world’s largest cross-disciplinary network of land use and real estate professionals, working to create stronger, more economically productive, and more equitable communities.

Prior to ULI, he was President of ERA AECOM, a leading planning and development advisory firm, where his work focused on development and investment strategy for real estate investors and developers, financial institutions, universities, and nonprofits. This work involved both residential and commercial uses, with an emphasis on the market, economic, and financial aspects of large-scale communities, urban redevelopment, and mixed-use projects.

Patrick has often helped public agencies craft public-private partnerships for major development projects, helping clients to develop a strategy and project plan, recruit a private-sector partner, and structure deals to fairly allocate the project’s costs and benefits. Patrick is a frequent speaker on urban development issues, and is the author or co-author of eight books and numerous articles. He has taught at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design and the Carey Business School at Johns Hopkins.

Lou Tortora

Board Member

Lou’s consulting, engineering, and construction background is an asset to both the YVHA board, which he joined in 2023, and the City of Steamboat Springs Planning Commission, where he has served since 2020. He has held operational and leadership positions for some of the largest engineering and construction firms in the world and was responsible for leading and managing business lines generating between $20 million to $750 million annually. He was an Executive Vice President for AECOM, a global engineering and construction firm with current annual revenues of more than $15 billion dollars and 45,000 staff.

Lou started his career in Florida at the privately held consulting, engineering, construction, and operations firm, Camp, Dresser and McKee. Lou maintains his Florida Professional Engineers License and has graduate degrees in Environmental Engineering and Biological Sciences. He received the first undergraduate degree awarded in Environmental Science from Texas Christian University.

Lou was a member of Who’s Who in Environmental Engineering and a Diplomat of the American Academy of Environmental Engineers until retirement in 2012. He also served on the Governor’s Council on the Environment for the State of Delaware.

When not volunteering in the Yampa Valley he enjoys hiking with his dog, skiing, golfing, and working out at the Old Town Hot Springs.

Sonja Macys

Routt County Representative – Alternate

Sonja was elected as Routt County Commissioner in November of 2022 and sworn into office on January 10, 2023. She has held a variety of elected positions in the Yampa Valley, including two terms as a Steamboat Springs City Council Member and one term on the Yampa Valley Electric Association Board.

Sonja and her husband, Chuck Willard, live near the Steamboat Ski Area but the south valley is close to their hearts. They were engaged at South Shore in Stagecoach and married at High Meadows Ranch on Lynx Pass.

Sonja’s professional background is in natural resources. Locally, she has served as Executive Director of the non-profit environmental education organization Yampatika, and worked for the Colorado Division of Water Resources.

She enjoys horseback riding, skiing, hiking, camping, and attending bluegrass festivals.

Steve Muntean

Steve Muntean

City of Steamboat Springs Representative – Alternate

Councilor Steve Muntean was elected to the two-year At-Large seat during the November 2023 election. For over 34 years, Muntean and his wife have run the Muntean Leadership Group, which helps organizations vision their future, identify initiatives & strategies to achieve that vision, develop win-win partnerships, collaborate & communicate effectively, and develop leaders that have a solution focused leadership style.

Muntean knows Steamboat Springs well and the needs of various groups and stakeholders. The last 12 years, he has worked with over 100 local businesses and more than 20 non-profits, city departments including finance, planning and IT, county department managers as well as the commissioners, the school board, and Leadership Steamboat.

He is also a board member of the LMD (local marketing district) and board member of The Health Partnership, which connects people to health and wellness resources so that they live longer healthier lives. In addition, he was the co-chair of the Yes to Education campaign which resulted in building the Sleeping Giant school.

Muntean feels the focus of City Council should be to identify and implement the best solutions to address Steamboat Springs’ challenges and opportunities, which will enrich our culture, character and lifestyle – affordable housing, managing growth, promoting mental and behavior health services, environmental sustainability and increase council’s team effectiveness.

Advisors

Sheila Henderson

Director of Health Equity & Community Partnerships

Sheila joined the Yampa Valley Housing Authority (YVHA) in 2016 as co-chair of the local Steering Committee tasked with leading a deep dive into our housing needs. She continued as a board member and co-chair of the Development team from 2017-2019. In 2021 she returned to help lead the Brown Ranch Community Development Plan with a focus on community input, targeted outreach to the traditionally unheard voices and the Health Equity Action Plan. She is currently working with Brown Ranch community partners and ensuring the implementation of the health equity work.

Her passion for housing began on an international level as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity in Central America. After building a home in the remote town of Cabañas, Guatemala, she, and her husband along with a native social worker created an educational NGO for the area.

As Executive Director of Integrated Community (9 years) she quickly learned that community members who receive housing at YVHA properties quickly transition from living in crisis to being self-sufficient thriving residents of the Yampa Valley. Prior to her nonprofit work Sheila managed Gondola General, Steamboat Lumber/Ace Hardware, Strawberry Park Hot Springs and owned a construction company called Sheil Build It that created a small development in Oak Creek.

Sheila and her husband love traveling to other countries, doing road trips, backpacking, hiking, mountain biking, skiing, and playing hockey with their family and friends. When she isn’t outside playing you can find her weaving in the Navajo way learning from native weavers.

The next board election will be in December 2024.

*If you would like to contact a Board Member or Advisor, please send an email to inquiry@yvha.org