Susan Stimart has a 25-year career in public policy. She has a background in urban planning, affordable housing and economic development. Susan is passionate about bringing forward workforce housing options to the region, and helping families gain the benefits of wealth creation from home ownership.
Prior to working in the affordable housing realm, Susan created a local fashion start-up company to give employment to recent immigrants. Before that, she successfully managed County of Albemarle’s economic development programs for over 13 years creating grant programs and resources for small business owners. She helped develop new economic policies and zoning ordinances to assist with local business development.She has an MBA from American University and a joint Masters in Transportation Policy and Urban Planning from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. When not chasing after two rambunctious dogs, Susan and her husband like to kayak and hike in the area.
Keith Smith is a Realtor with Roy Wheeler Realty in the Charlottesville area. He has over 32 years of experience in General Real Estate, Land Development, Land Planning, as well and General Contracting and Business Management. He co-founded YES Business Management LLC and serves as a coach and mentor for agents at Roy Wheeler Realty Inc. He is currently serving on the boards of the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission and Corporation, the Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust, and the Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors. He currently serves on and chairs the Regional Housing Partnership.
Greg Slater is an Associate Broker with Nest Realty in the Charlottesville area. He was introduced to the conversation on affordable housing when he helped sell the first proffered affordable housing in Albemarle County in the 2007. Greg served as CAAR President in 2010 and currently chairs the board of the Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust. He is also currently serving as a Board Director for the Blue Ridge Home Builders Association. He is passionate about working to develop opportunities for affordable home ownership in Charlottesville and the surrounding area.
Joshua Batman has a lifetime of experience in the Architecture, Development and Construction industries. His career began in development and construction in his family business, where he completed $20MM in single family and multi-family projects. After graduate studies, he co-founded a design/build firm with internationally recognized architect Joseph Wheeler. He joined Stony Point Design/Build in 2016 and was instrumental in executing on $100MM in direct real estate investment. Outside of Virginia, Joshua interned at SOM with the team responsible for the Burj Khalifa tower on a prototype for industrialized large-scale mixed-use development. Joshua holds an undergraduate Architecture degree from the University of Virginia, and a Masters in Architecture from Virginia Tech, where he is a key collaborator in the Virginia Tech FutureHaus program that won the 2018 Solar Decathlon Middle East. Joshua has received several state and local AIA awards and was nominated as the NAHB Young Building Professional of the Year for Region A two years running. Joshua is on the board of the Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust, an active member of the ULI, the AIA, the Virginia ELA, and BRHBA.
As a professional planner, Julia Monteith, specializes in the planning and stewardship of campus environments. Trained as both an architect and a landscape architect, her focus is on integrated planning and design, particularly in the realm of sustainability. She is skilled in collaborating with project teams and leading decision-making among diverse client groups and stakeholders. Julia has extensive experience in developing complex strategies for land use, urban design, and precinct level plans addressing major institutions across the United States and is currently the Senior Land Use Planner for the Office of the Architect. She previously worked as a private consultant with Sasaki Associates and as a campus planner at UC Berkeley.
W. Frazier Bell has 36 years of experience in the Real Estate Industry, to include as a General Contractor, Broker, and Mortgage Banker. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia (’72) and is both a published author and a former educator, having taught college-level Real Estate Finance at Piedmont Virginia Community College. He has served on the boards of Hospice of the Piedmont and Trout Unlimited State Board and was the charter President of the Mortgage Banker’s Association. Frazier is the co-founder and former chairman of the Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust. He currently serves as the Vice-Chairman of the board.
Ali DiGuardo serves as the Marketing and Communications Director for the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR). For more than a decade she has utilized her association management expertise with multiple associations to communicate the value of membership, increase member engagement, and advance their brand and community outreach. Since moving to the Charlottesville area in 2013, Ali has volunteered on the Albemarle Housing Improvement Program (AHIP) House Party Silent Auction Committee and participated in various repair/rehab build days. Most recently Ali served on the Regional Housing Partnership’s Housing Summit Committee, which was responsible for planning and executing the inaugural 2019 “Opening the Door” Regional Housing and Homelessness Summit. She is eager to make a difference in addressing affordable housing in the Greater Charlottesville community.
Grace Remer works at the intersection of nonprofit programs and education. She is a program coordinator for the Jefferson Scholars Foundation where she supports graduate scholarship programs and foundation events. Grace’s academic and professional experiences focus on collaborative learning, nonprofit partnerships and nonprofit management. Before moving to Charlottesville in 2019, she worked in the nonprofit and higher education sectors in Richmond, Virginia. Grace is passionate about using tools like storytelling, the arts and community mapping to empower communities so residents share ownership of processes and places. Grace holds a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree from Virginia Commonwealth University (2018), a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Studies from University of Richmond (2016), and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from University of Richmond (2012). She lives in Charlottesville with her husband and enjoys attempting to garden, road trips, nerdy public lectures, and exploring Virginia with friends and family.
Shaka J. Sydnor has over 10 years of experience in higher education including time at the University of North Carolina at Asheville, the University of Cincinnati, and the University of Virginia. Shaka currently serves as an Assistant Dean of Students at the UVA focusing on promoting access and affordability for low-income and first-generation college students on Grounds. Shaka also brings several years of non-profit community development experience having worked and volunteered for several organizations in Western Pennsylvania, Western North Carolina, here in Charlottesville. Shaka earned both his Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Masters of Arts in Higher Education at Geneva College. Shaka and his family recently moved into a Thomas Jefferson Community Land Trust home and he is looking forward to creating more opportunities for affordable homeownership in our area.
Mike Appleby is an innovator and entrepreneur. In less than 20 years, he has combined his keen business sense with his creative nature to grow a local company, a company created to commercialize products using NASA’s “faster, better, cheaper” approach called Mikro Systems, to 140 employees in Albemarle County. An additional 100 of positions were added to the community as a result of a symbiotic relationship with global manufacturer, Siemens Energy. His contributions to the advanced materials manufacturing space are extensive and include gas turbine blades used in natural gas power plants, medical devices and jet engine technology. In January 2001 Mike and two co-founders created Mikro Systems Incorporated, a company formed with a vision of advancing manufacturing beyond its current limits. Located in Charlottesville Virginia, MIKRO combined lithography with molding and casting methods, and a new manufacturing platform emerged called Tomo-Lithographic-Molding, otherwise known as TOMO. Under Mike’s leadership, TOMO proved to be a crucible of innovation in the Healthcare, Energy and Aerospace markets, resulting in significant breakthroughs for medical CT and gas turbine technology. In 2011, Mikro licensed the TOMO technology to Siemens Energy who built a manufacturing center in Charlottesville. Since Mikro’s inception more than 200 manufacturing jobs have been created in Charlottesville Virginia. Pratt Whitney merged with Mikro to create a broader manufacturing division based here in Charlottesville.