Bobby Lieb: Board President
With experience in La Plata County that ranges from running a local business, Durango Threadworks, to working as the County Commissioner, Bobby Lieb chose to serve with the RHA because he believes a regional approach to affordable housing is the smartest approach – and that the RHA has a large stake in that process. Lieb left Durango only briefly, and has chosen to raise his three children here. “Home is where the heart is, and I grew up here. Family is paramount, and mine is all here. We moved back just to raise kids here because it is a safe, small community with an abundance of recreational opportunities.”
David Gore: Board Vice-President
A local realtor currently living in Durango, David Gore was appointed to the RHA Board in 2011. David first became interested in Durango when his daughter came to school here. He purchased a home for his daughter while she attended Fort Lewis College, and soon found he and his wife just couldn’t stay away. “You have the whole package here,” David said, referring to La Plata County’s combination of a competitive business environment with a lot of opportunity, outdoor activities, high quality schools and—of course—affordable golf courses.
Christina moved to Durango in 1999 on a career track that took her from botanist and researcher for Ecosystem Management International, to broker for The Wells Group and now Mayor of Durango. She is a graduate of the Leadership La Plata class, serves on various boards and represents Durango at the statewide level as an executive board member of the Colorado Municipal League. True of many Durango and La Plata County residents, Christina loves hiking, biking and running throughout the area, as well as partaking in Durango’s excellent dining opportunities. “Durango to me is defined by the amazing natural beauty, the vibrant downtown, and the real people who infuse this community with their entrepreneurial spirits, willingness to make it work, and most importantly, friendly smiles.”
Maintenance Supervisor for the Town of Ignacio, James Brown chose to serve on the Board of RHA for one main reason—because he was a client. “When I saw the opportunity through the town of Ignacio I thought I would take the chance to give something back and offer a unique perspective to the board.” Brown fell in love with the area while on vacation and hasn’t left since.
A civil engineer serving as a Board Member for the Town of Bayfield, Debbi Renfro first became interested in affordable housing when she worked for a developer who was heavily involved in affordable housing projects in Boulder, CO. Renfro returned to Bayfield in 1998 with her family to settle back in to a more rural town. They chose Bayfield for the warm, small-town feel and the high quality of the schools.
RHA Board Member Scott Graham is happy to be working on RHA’s affordable housing initiatives in La Plata County. He lived for a decade in New Mexico, where he worked as a writer and editor for the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority while his wife, Susan, attended medical school. At the end of her schooling, Scott and Susan returned to Durango to raise their two sons, Taylor and Logan. Scott is the author of five books including Extreme Kids, his most recent, which won the National Outdoor Book Award. During his time in Durango, Scott has served his community in a variety of capacities: on Durango City Council from 2007 – 2009; chairman of the Durango Open Space Advisory Board; committee member of the City of Durango’s Comprehensive Plan Review.
Chris La May has hired as Town Manager for the Town of Bayfield in July 2011. Chris has an extensive background in public administration: seven years as the Town Administrator for Elizabeth, CO; budget analyst for Adams County; intern in the City Manager’s office for the City of Tucson, AZ; and Special Projects Coordinator for the Town of Mt. Crested Butte, CO. Chris has a Bachelor of Science degree in Recreation Resource Management from Colorado State University, and a Master’s degree in Public Administration and Policy from the University of Arizona. Mr. La May wants to be involved with the RHA to assist in giving those desiring home ownership the education and ability to make wise home ownership decisions. He and his wife have chosen to make La Plata County home in order to raise their children in a quality and healthy environment. “We enjoy the climate, recreational opportunities, strong Bayfield education system, and the strong sense of community.”
Michelina Ceglia: Member-at-Large
Michelina runs her own business as a health coach, working with local employers and employees to stay healthy. “I serve on the Board of the RHA because it is a valuable program that empowers homeowners; it isn’t an entitlement or give-away program—it really empowers them to participate in the market.” She added that the very capable leadership of RHA makes it a worthwhile investment of her time and energy. “I am a fourth generation La Plata County Resident. My choice to live here is about legacy; solid values and solid roots. I can’t imagine raising my kids anywhere else.”
Dirk Nelson: RHA Legal Counsel
As someone with a lot of experience working with government entities, Dirk was excited to have the opportunity to work with the RHA for the chance to be involved in a unique cooperative effort among government entities, and to help with an ongoing and serious need in the community to address issues of affordable housing in the place he loves to call home. “I’ve tried living other places, but haven’t found any place better. The weather, recreational opportunities—this is just a great place to raise kids,” he said.
Mike Hodgett: Board Treasurer
Originally from West Texas, Mike Hodgett, the CFO of First National Bank in Durango, moved here about ten years ago. “Growing up in West Texas, Durango was paradise,” he said. “La Plata County is the perfect mix of people, landscape, and soul.” Mike has served on the Finance Committee of the RHA for nearly five years, and currently serves as the Board Treasurer.