Board of Trustees
 

Dan Rubin

General Trustee since 7/18.  

President

Member: Funding & Acquisitions Committee

Advisory member: Operations Management Committee

One of THLT’s founders, Dan was attracted to this effort by a desire to make a long-term contribution to affordable housing outside the speculative spiral. Dan has been a half-time volunteer for THLT for the past four years, from its pre-incorporation organization committee through the present, with major roles in establishing our organization, helping develop our ground lease, exploring potential property donations, finding financial donors, representing THLT publicly and writing grants. He wishes to step down from being President at the end of 2022. In Olympia since 1976. Dan retired in 2014 from a career in health and human services policy, administration, and management in state government and the non-profit community, spanning medical services and coverage, public health, aging and disabilities, and cross-cutting collaborative efforts. His skills include project management, grant-writing, planning, evaluation and general management, and previous leadership on non-profit and public sector boards. In personal life, one of Dan’s adult children is disabled and likely to always need subsidy for decent housing, and he has other experience with extended family and close friends spanning serious mental illness, homelessness, shared and multi-generational living, immigrant communities and incarceration/post-release inclusion. Dan is currently a board member for the state Developmental Disabilities Endowment Trust Fund.


 

Jerry Bustamante

Low-income Lessee Trustee since 12/18. 

Vice President

Chair, Outreach Committee 

Member: Funding & Acquisitions Committee

 

Jerry has been part of THLT since our start-up, including service on the Outreach Committee, Funding and Acquisitions Committee, as one of the trustees most involved in developing our ground lease, and as THLT’s advocacy lead. In the latter role he has built on prior experience doing legislative administrative work and as a lobbyist to serve as one of THLT’s primary representatives in northwestern regional CLT advocacy, and on Thurston County’s most important coordinating body for affordable housing and homelessness response, the Housing Action Team. Jerry is Dine (Navajo) and graduated from The Evergreen State College in 2014.


 

Julie Lind

Newly-elected Public Trustee since 12/21.  

Board Secretary

Chair: Homeownership Program Committee

Member: Funding and Acquisitions Committee

Julie is Vice President for Retail Lending at Washington State Employees Credit Union, with responsibility for all WSECU residential mortgage lending statewide, as well as vehicle loans, credit cards, and personal loans. She is the executive responsible for implementing WSECU’s brand-new Board initiative on supporting low-income individuals on the whole road to homeownership, not just the mortgage loan process   Julie is a long-time resident of rural southern Thurston County. and has worked for WSECU for almost 30 years. She has stepped into a very active, working role on the Board and in our program, with strong interest in hands-on work as well as meetings. She describes herself as a life-long learner who is passionate about helping people who want to help themselves and removing obstacles to achieving homeownership.


 

Ann Vandeman

Public Trustee since 12/19

Treasurer

Member: Homeownership Program Committee

Ann believes housing is a human right and a social obligation of a civil society, and the land trust model of permanent affordability is part of the solution.  Ann has a PhD in agricultural economics, and currently works as a CPA tax accountant.  Her previous positions include research economist, bookkeeper, organic farmer and nonprofit executive director.  She’s a joiner, having served on numerous professional and nonprofit organization boards, most recently with the Community Farm Land Trust. She has an adult child with intellectual disabilities and is a leader in the community of like parents.

 

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Ivy Aho 

Newly elected low-income Lessee Trustee since 12/21. 

Member: Homeownership Program Committee.  

 

Ivy and her husband are likely to become THLTs first actual lessee, as they were selected during 2021 as eligible to purchase THLT’s first home, upon completion of mortgage commitment and closing. Ivy and her husband are low-income (under 80% AMI), have three children, have lived in the Olympia area all their lives, and have never owned a home. They both work. Ivy is a financial services technician with Washington State’s Department of Social and Health Services, helping poor and often desperate people gain access to services they need; and her husband. works in retail sales. Ivy previously worked for the local Community Action Agency and was a leader in a breast-feeding support network.


 

Tyrone Brown

Newly elected low-income Lessee Trustee since 12/21.

Member: Homeownership Program Committee.  

Tyrone is a statewide community organizer for the Tenants Union of Washington. He was an Olympia City Council candidate in 2020. In his candidate statement for that role, Ty described himself as a Pacific Northwest native, of indigenous and African descent, born in Portland and father to three wonderful children, who is “no stranger to hardships, having dealt with housing injustice a majority of his life.” He is working toward a degree in Psychology at Evergreen State College while owning a small business and volunteering with multiple non-profit organizations and community groups.


 

Zahid Chaudhry

Public Trustee since 12/18. Founding Member.

Member: Operations Management, Finance and Acquisitions, Outreach, and Homeownership Program Committees

Zahid is an honorable, disabled American Veteran with a rich background of community advocacy, advisory roles, and direct volunteer assistance in a wide range of housing and social justice activities spanning >25 years. He has lived on four continents and many countries working in housing, self help and alternative financing, autonomous organizations, Community Land Trusts and housing cooperatives. For years, Zahid has personally and tangibly assisted people to finance, obtain, maintain, repair and retain housing. He has held volunteer roles in many organizations, including veterans' services, government and nongovernmental advisory positions, disability rights, peace activism, transitional housing, housing providers' associations, and political organizations. He has been a founding member of several organizations, including THLT and the People of Color Community Coalition, a nonprofit serving marginalized disenfranchised people of color in solidarity with all people of goodwill.


 

Susan Davenport

General Trustee since 2018. Founding Member.

Chair, Operations Management Committee

Member: Outreach and Homeownership Program Committees.  

 

More than anyone else, Susan is the founder and instigator of THLT, and served as our Vice President 2018 - 2021. She applies years of knowledge and connections related to affordable housing and the situation of low-income families in Thurston County. Susan was a founding member, in 1975, of Black Walnut Association, a community land trust in Olympia, with ongoing work since then toward creating affordable housing in numerous community advocacy efforts. Susan works as a Homebuilder therapist and advocate with the Institute for Family Development, providing a full range of services including assisting clients finding stable, affordable housing.


 

Paul Knox

Public Trustee since 12/18. 

Chair, Funding & Acquisitions Committee

Member: Operations Management Committee

Paul is former Executive Director of United Way of Thurston County, following a long career of leadership and innovation in policy, operations, advocacy, and community organizing with state government and non-profit organizations (including founding executive of the Washington Asset Building Coalition). Paul is a social entrepreneur and professional consultant with a passion and life-long commitment for creating better communities and connections between people. He loves building projects, growing and making food and bringing people together. He has been the acquisitions lead in our first homeownership project. 


 

Anna Schlecht

Newly elected General Trustee since 12/21

Member: Homeownership Program Committee

Anna has devoted her life and career to supporting healthy & affordable housing for low income people.  Retired after nearly 40 years with the City of Olympia's Housing Program, Schlecht continues to work on public housing policy as part of Thurston Thrives Housing Action Team, chairing the Senior Housing Team.  Currently, Schlecht sits on several local boards including Senior Services for South Sound, the Advisory Board for Lewis, Mason Thurston Area Agency on Aging where she chairs the Housing Committee, and the Thurston Land Trust.  Schlecht holds a Masters in Public Administration with an emphasis on senior housing policy. 

 

ONE VACANT LESSEE TRUSTEE POSITION

Staff and Contracted Support

Melissa Rasmussen

Contracted Operations Manager

Haven Consulting

Melissa believes that humanity can be a beneficial presence on this planet, and that everyone deserves to thrive. She has spent her life learning all she can about how to design and cultivate homes and futures that work for everyone. Her interests span sustainable infrastructure, biophilic design, natural building, permaculture, network convening, cooperative business design, real estate, and land development. She graduated from Evergreen State College in 2019, after spending the early part of her 20s in Canada as a young mother, and after co-building an experimental aquaponics and permaculture farm in Ghana when she was 20. She is passionate about affordable housing and ensuring all people have the dignity of shelter, stability, support, and a path to a good future.