Christopher Persons Chief Executive Officer
Christopher Persons has led Capitol Hill Housing since 2007. Chris has more than three decades of senior nonprofit leadership experience. Prior to joining CHH, he was executive director of Inspiration Corporation, a homeless and housing services agency in Chicago. Under his leadership, it grew from a neighborhood agency to a city-wide, award-winning corporation. Chris guided the organization through two mergers, started a housing program and opened a restaurant doubling as a job training and employment center.
Chris has led CHH through the development of two strategic plans and has refined a vision framework to drive the organization forward. In 2010 he oversaw the creation of the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation to develop resources to support CHH's work. Under Chris's leadership, the organization has grown significantly - adding several buildings and more than 350 affordable apartments to the portfolio as well as much more commercial space. 12th Avenue Arts, completed in 2014, is the organization's biggest project to date. This $47 Million development houses two performing arts theaters, 88 apartments, nonprofit offices and local retail, and has received several awards. Capitol Hill Housing continues to expand its community development work including the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict and a growing resident services program.
Chris has a long-standing commitment to leadership in community development. He served as Chair of the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce for three years and served on the Seattle Planning Commission for four years. Chris is actively involved in the Capitol Hill neighborhood and is leading CHH's community partnerships in the Central District. Chris served as treasurer of the board of the Housing Development Consortium of Seattle and King County, is currently on the board of the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation, serves on the Housing Partnership Network's Public Policy Committee, and is a member of the Yesler Community Collaborative.
Jill Fleming Deputy Director / Chief Financial Officer
Jill Fleming, CPA, is Capitol Hill Housing's Deputy Director and Chief Financial Officer. Jill oversees property management, asset management, facilities, finance and administration. She came to CHH in 2006 after 19 years in public accounting. Jill has extensive experience working with developers, owners and managers of affordable housing, and is well-versed in finance, accounting and compliance. She has also worked in commercial banking and mortgage lending. Jill currently is the Treasurer of the Housing Development Consortium of Seattle-King County, serves on the board of the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce and is a member the StrengthMatters CFO Working Group. Jill has served on the boards of the Affordable Housing Management Association of Washington and the Mt. Baker Housing Association. She holds an MBA from the University of Washington and a BA from The Evergreen State College.
Michael Seiwerath Director of Community Programs and External Relations
Michael Seiwerath coordinates community programs and relations and oversees all aspects of fund development. He is the founding Executive Director of the Capitol Hill Housing Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization that helps fund CHH's work to build vibrant and engaged communities. He coordinates CHH's extensive programs in the community, and manages the Capitol Hill Arts District. Prior to joining CHH in 2008, Michael was the Executive Director of Northwest Film Forum, the nationally recognized Capitol Hill film arts organization. Michael serves on the Seattle Arts Commission, Washington Low Income Housing Alliance State Legislative Committee, and the Cal Anderson Park Alliance Advisory Council.
Stacey McQuade Director of People and Culture
Stacey McQuade oversees CHH’s Organizational Development, Human Resources and Cultural Development functions. Stacey came to CHH in 2016, hailing from Montana and bringing extensive experience at both nonprofit and for-profit entities. She is well-versed in areas of business management, human capital development, policy and legislative development and legal consultation. Prior to CHH, Stacey served the Governor of Montana in a board appointment focusing on Tourism and Economic Development. She also served on several federal entity boards representing Indian Country. Stacey holds a BS in Business Management and Economics and a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Montana.
Jeremy Wilkening Director of Real Estate
Jeremy Wilkening leads Capitol Hill Housing’s real estate development work. He began working at CHH in 2016. Prior to this he led real estate development at other community development corporations in the Boston area, the last of which was Urban Edge Housing Corporation. His development career began in 2002 in San Francisco and he has experience working in multiple states in the Northeast in creating both affordable and mixed-income housing as well as mixed-use transit oriented development. Jeremy earned an MBA at University of California, Davis and a BS in Chemical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology.
Melissa Blankenship Administration and Special Projects Director
Melissa Blankenship has served on the administrative team at CHH since 2012. She is responsible for directing and overseeing the operations of the administrative services and information technology departments. Melissa also serves as the Public Records Officer. Before joining CHH she served as an operations and project manager at the technology company Digital Dog Inc., and Director of Operations and Special Projects for Entertainment Company iv, inc. both based in Nashville, TN. Melissa holds a BA in Mass Communication from Menlo College in Atherton, CA and is the Chair of the Alumni Association's Seattle chapter. She is a Director on the Board of WAPRO, Washington State Public Records Officers and volunteers with the ALS Association's Evergreen Chapter.
Brad Lange Director of Asset Management and Acquisitions
Brad Lange focuses on the financial sustainability, physical viability and mission alignment of the real estate portfolio. Brad has over 20 years of experience in real estate analysis, acquisitions, asset management, financing and dispositions. Prior to joining Capitol Hill Housing in 2013, he held positions for a variety of investors. Brad is licensed by the State of Washington as a Managing Broker and is the designated broker for CH Real Estate Management Services LLC, CHH's third party management firm. Brad earned a degree in Real Estate Appraisal and Investment Analysis from the University of Wisconsin, and is active in the Asset Management and Property Management Affinity group of the Housing Development Consortium.
Joel Sisolak Sustainability and Planning Director
Joel Sisolak, LEED AP, coordinates Capitol Hill Housing's internal sustainability efforts and directs the Capitol Hill EcoDistrict and other neighborhood planning efforts. Prior to joining CHH in 2013, Joel was the Advocacy and Outreach Director for the Cascadia Green Building Council (2008-2013) and Executive Director of the Friends of the Cedar River Watershed (2000-2006). Joel holds a master of urban planning degree from the University of Washington. He serves on the Community Stewardship Advisory Committee for the Master Builder's Association. Joel lives in Seattle with his wife and daughter.
Deena Wallis-York Director of Finance
Deena Wallis-York oversees Capitol Hill Housing's accounting, insurance risk management and compliance functions. Deena came to CHH in 2015 with previous nonprofit affordable housing experience and she is well-versed in finance, banking, accounting and compliance. She has also worked as a controller in the manufacturing, construction, trading and health care industries. Deena has served on the boards of Listen to Kids, foster care organizations and food networks. She was an active foster parent for over 15 years. Deena holds a BA in Economics and International Relations and a BS in Accounting from the University of Washington and she has received certificates in financial planning and productivity management.
Heyward Watson Director of Property Management
Heyward Watson is CHH’s Director of Property Management. He is responsible for leading and managing all of the property management operational functions at CHH, and plays a key role in helping to shape CHH's property management and tenant relations strategy. Heyward most recently served as a Senior Advisor for The Third Sector Company. Previously, he was a Senior Project Officer with BC Housing in Burnaby, British Columbia, where he planned and managed a portfolio of social housing, group home, and special facility development projects. Before that, he was the Executive Director of Impact Capital from 2006 to 2011, following 11 years with Fannie Mae. Heyward served on the Board of the Seattle Housing Authority from 2008 to 2012, where he helped develop housing policy to provide long-term rental housing and rental assistance to low-income people in Seattle.
Scott McEachran Facilities Director
Scott (Mac) McEachran oversees the operations of CHH’s maintenance services program (MSP) and capital projects. He has supervised the maintenance department at CHH since 2002. Mac has vast knowledge and experience at CHH buildings, and has managed increased responsibilities in his tenure. His efforts have grown CHH’s maintenance department and its ability to provide repair and maintenance for the growing portfolio of buildings. Prior to joining CHH, Mac worked as a Project Development Facilitator focused on continuous process improvement, worked in a lead position as Facilities Maintenance Technician for a large manufacturer and as a Journeyman Union Carpenter. He has 30 years of experience in facilities maintenance, building construction, property management and project management.