Jessica Grant, Member Services and Operations Administrator
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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 moving to Portland, Oregon, Jessica worked for Yosemite Institute as the Site Manager of Crane Flat. She oversaw all daily operations at this environmental education campus, located in northern Yosemite National Park. Just prior to working for the CLT Network, Jessica worked for Outside In, where she managed a county funded program for homeless youth in downtown Portland.
In addition to her work with nonprofits, Jessica spent two years working in the classrooms of the Berkeley Unified School District.
Melora Hiller, Executive Director
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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 planning, and program development.
Before becoming a consultant, Melora managed a statewide capacity-building program for housing and community development organizations, including: designing and implementing a technical and organizational development training program for professional staff and board members; overseeing investments in organizational core support for 15 nonprofits; brokering technical assistance capacity grants through an assessment and joint problem-solving approach and referral to appropriate technical consultants.
Melora earned her Master’s degree in public administration at Seattle University’s Institute for Public Service. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards and school committees and is a graduate of Leadership Tomorrow. Melora is the founding board chair of the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation.
Marcus Presley, Senior Policy Associate
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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 staff a 45 member coalition of diverse organizations that is working to pass a strong land bank bill in Philadelphia. He also staffed other successful advocacy coalitions, coordinated public outreach for a major community planning process, and created and delivered trainings to develop advocacy skills in both individuals and organizations.
Prior to his six years at WCRP, Marcus worked for a labor union, organizing new members and strengthening existing chapters. He also worked on several campaigns as an undergraduate student organizer, including one which successfully passed progressive rent control laws in New Brunswick, NJ.
Marcus earned a master's degree in social work at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Social Policy & Practice, where he focused on policy, administration, and community organizing. He has completed a number of national organizer trainings and serves on the board of his local civic association.
Beth Sorce, Community & Capacity Building Manager
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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 Providence Community Housing, a local nonprofit specializing in affordable housing development. She also served on the board of Jane Place Neighborhood Sustainability Initiative, a neighborhood based CLT located in Mid-City.
Prior to moving to New Orleans, Beth served as the Director of Training at the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board (UHAB)—an organization dedicated to creating, supporting and sustaining limited equity cooperatives throughout New York City. She designed and implemented curriculum for co-op residents and staff and served on the management team that oversaw the cooperative development pipeline.
In addition to her work experience, Beth has conducted research on the role of CLTs in weak market cities, in the commercial realm and in the development and preservation of Low Income Housing Tax Credit projects.
Emily Thaden, Research & Policy Development Manager
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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 development of 22 homes was completed, and stewardship policies and practices were established.
Additionally, Emily acted as a research consultant for the Network conducting the 2009 CLT Foreclosure and Delinquency Survey and The 2011 Comprehensive CLT Survey. Her work on CLTs has been published by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy in Landlines and working papers and by the National Housing Institute in Shelterforce.
Emily completed her doctorate in Community Research & Action at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College. Her dissertation focused on low-income and minority homeownership and the solution of shared equity homeownership. Her teaching has focused on organizational development, community development, and applied research. During graduate school, she directed a community organizing and documentary photography program with youth in public housing, organized to develop a local Housing Trust Fund, and consulted with the TN Dept. of Human Services to revamp their welfare system.
Prior to graduate school, she worked as a researcher and practitioner with youth diagnosed with psychiatric illnesses and as a crisis counselor and curriculum developer for the Anti-Violence Project, which serves LGBTQ communities in New York. She received her undergraduate degree from New York University in Psychology and Gender & Sexuality Studies.