Who We Are

Our organization’s first duty is to develop resources that help the members of our Network. This website plays a key role in fulfilling this responsibility. It’s intended to be a place to share ideas and lessons learned. This information is designed to both introduce newcomers to the basics about community land trusts (CLTs) and permanently affordable housing and to increase the knowledge and skills of experienced practitioners.

The National Community Land Trust Network (the Network) was incorporated in 2006 to provide support and leadership for CLTs around the country. Today the Network also welcomes other organizations that offer homeownership programs with lasting affordability. Along with CLTs, this includes some Community Development Corporations, Community Development Financial Institutions, Habitat for Humanity affiliates, government-based inclusionary zoning programs, and deed-restricted programs that are providing...


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Board of Directors

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Brenda Torpy

Brenda Torpy

President

Brenda Torpy is the CEO at Champlain Housing Trust and has 34 years experience in the affordable housing field starting with rural community development and affordable housing advocacy in northern Vermont.

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Jesse Beason

Jesse Beason

Vice President

Jesse Beason lives in Portland, Oregon and serves as the Director of Public Affairs for the Northwest Health Foundation. Prior to this, Jesse served as the Executive Director of Proud Ground until June of 2013. Jesse joined the Proud Ground staff in 2008 after serving for three years as Vice Chair, Interim Chair and member of Proud Ground’s...


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Dave Brown

Dave Brown

Dave Brown is the Executive Director of the National NeighborWorks Association. NNA unites housing and community development practitioners to advocate for affordable housing and economic opportunities for individuals, families, communities and neighborhoods across the country. Mr. Brown has served in the Executive Director role since 2005....


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Robert Burns

Robert Burns

Secretary

Robert currently serves as President and CEO for CityFirst Homes, a leading nonprofit housing organization based in Washington, DC which seeks to expand access to home ownership and promote stability for low and moderate income families through use of shared equity models. Prior to joining CityFirst, Robert served as Director of Local...


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Lisa Byers

Lisa Byers

Lisa Byers has been the Executive Director of OPAL (Of People And Land) Community Land Trust on Orcas Island in Washington State since January 1996. In that community of 3,300 households, OPAL has sustained a membership base and active support from more than 15% of the island’s population and now provides housing for almost 6% of the...


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Connie Chavez

Connie Chavez

Connie Chavez has over 15 years experience in administrative management for non-profit organizations. Connie was with Sawmill Community Land Trust in Albuquerque for 10 years, until the spring of 2013, where she was appointed Associate Director in 2004 and Executive Director in October, 2005. She was the Portfolio Manager/Information...


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Robert Dowling

Robert Dowling

Robert began his working career as a high school teacher and basketball coach before moving into banking in New York City. While employed at Chase Manhattan Bank and Irving Trust Company, Robert completed an MBA in finance at NYU in 1986. Robert worked in the retail branches for Citibank in the early 1990’s before moving to Carrboro in 1994....


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John Hamilton

John Hamilton

John Hamilton is the founder and a Director of City First Enterprises of DC, a for-profit, FDIC-insured community development bank serving poor neighborhoods in Washington, D.C. with retail banking and small business, housing, and consumer loans. He is currently involved in capitalizing and launching a community land trust to support local...


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Cheryl Key

Cheryl Key

Treasurer

Cheryl Key, First Homes Properties, has been involved with providing affordable housing for low-to-moderate income households since 1989. Her career in housing started with the Southeastern Minnesota Multi-County Housing and Redevelopment Authority where she served in a variety of positions and worked with several housing programs and housing...


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Selina Mack

Selina Mack

Selina Mack currently serves as the Executive Director of Durham Community Land Trustees, Inc. (DCLT) located in Durham, North Carolina. Selina joined DCLT in 1996, and has been a strong advocate for community stabilization, community organizing and ensuring access to affordable housing in Durham’s inner-city neighborhoods. She was...


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Marge Misak

Marge Misak

Marge Misak is the Land Trust Program Director at Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Cleveland in Ohio, which was established in Fall 2011 as a result of a merger with the Community Land Trust of Greater Cleveland. Marge was a member of the Advisory Board of the National CLT Network’s CLT Academy from 2009-2012 and was chair of the...


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Jim Mischler-Philbin

Jim Mischler-Philbin

Jim Mischler-Philbin is the Community Land Trust Director at One Roof Community Housing in Duluth, MN, where he has worked since 2000. Jim has served on the National CLT Network Board since its inception in 2006, serving as president in 2008-2009.  Jim is also a community land trust leaseholder/homeowner.

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Norma Valdez

Norma Valdez

Norma Valdez lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico and currently serves as the Community Development Director of The Loan Fund. Norma joined The Loan Fund staff in 1996 after working for Bank of America in various positions including branch manager, sales manager and Neighborhood Development Officer. Norma has served on various non-profit boards in...


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Valarie Wilson

Valarie Wilson

Valarie Wilson currently serves as Executive Director of the Atlanta BeltLine Partnership, a private, non-profit organization dedicated to fostering support for Atlanta’s BeltLine, the most comprehensive, ambitious urban redevelopment project in the United States. With more than 20 years in public service and meeting community needs, Ms....


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Staff

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Melora Hiller

Melora Hiller

Executive Director

Melora Hiller has over 20 years of experience working in the world of affordable housing and has worked with numerous CLTs in the Northwest. Prior to beoming the Executive Director, she consulted with nonprofit organizations, foundations and local governments in areas related to organizational development, nonprofit capacity building, strategic...


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Jessica Grant

Jessica Grant

Member Services & Operations

Jessica joined the CLT Network in the beginning of 2008, bringing with her over nine years experience in nonprofit administration. She previously lived in Berkeley, California, working as the Director of Operations for Global Routes. This innovative nonprofit specializes in experiential education in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Prior to...


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Marcus Presley

Marcus Presley

Senior Policy Associate

Marcus Presley comes to the Network with over 8 years of professional experience in policy advocacy and community organizing. Most recently, Marcus worked as an organizer with the Women’s Community Revitalization Project (WCRP), a Philadelphia-based CDC/CLT that builds permanently affordable housing. In this role, he helped to organize and...


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Beth Sorce

Beth Sorce

Community & Capacity Building Manager

Beth Sorce brings over eight years of affordable housing and shared equity experience to the CLT Network. She currently lives in New Orleans where she earned her masters degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of New Orleans and has worked as both an urban planner with GCR, Inc. and a Community Development Finance Fellow with...


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Emily Thaden

Emily Thaden

Research & Policy Development Manager

Emily Thaden joined the CLT Network in December of 2011. Previously, Emily built and managed a new shared equity homeownership program called Our House at The Housing Fund (THF), a Community Development Financial Institution in Nashville, TN. During her two years at THF, funding for the program’s first 100 homes had been secured, the...


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Lisa Johnson

Lisa Johnson

Communications and Fundraising Coordinator

Elizabeth (Lisa) Johnson brings six years of nonprofit communications and administration to the Community Land Trust Network.  Coming most recently from Puget Sound Blood Center, Lisa has previously designed communications for CommonBond Communities, Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington County and the Chimacum Corner...


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