Geoffrey Morgan, President & CEO
Geoff oversees all operations of First Community Housing, serving over 3,000 residents with the highest quality of environmentally sustainable, service enriched affordable housing. Prior To joining FCH, Geoffrey was the Vice President of Real Estate Development for Christian Church Homes, and was responsible for development in various phases of approximately 2,000 units of senior housing and mixed use projects nationally. He has over 16 years of experience in overseeing all aspects of the financing, development, construction and operation of affordable housing projects, subdivision home building, commercial real estate development, agricultural land trusts, historic renovations and military base reuse. He is a Graduate of MIT with a Masters in Real Estate Development and is a licensed General Contractor and LEED AP Homes.
Regina Celestin Williams, Director of Housing Development
Regina is responsible for securing funding for and managing the design and development of FCH’s affordable housing pipeline. Previous to joining FCH, Mrs. Celestin was a member of the National Development Council’s East Team providing housing and economic development consulting services to several East Coast municipalities and leading NDC’s green initiatives. She has also worked at the National Housing Trust, structuring the financing for and overseeing the rehabilitation of affordable housing properties while employing green construction features. Regina received her Master of City Planning degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelors in Urban Studies from Stanford University.
Thomas Iamesi, Director of Real Estate
Since 1982 Mr. Iamesi has been responsible for the development of new construction and rehabilitation projects throughout the Bay Area. He has completed over 2,000 units of rental housing, almost all affordable. His projects include multi-family developments; senior housing; SROs; high-rise condominiums; and single-family homes. He oversees loan packaging, site acquisition, planning and entitlements, design, lease marketing, financial analysis and feasibility studies, project budgeting, construction management and contract negotation. Tom’s approachability, conflict resolution skills and comfort in dealing with neighbors, public hearings and community groups helps to expedite the development process.
Ava Kuo, Senior Project Manager
Ava brings a breadth of experience developing green, affordable multifamily housing to FCH. She has managed rehabs and new developments in all stages, from feasibility analysis to project closeout. Prior to moving to the Bay Area in 2014, Ms. Kuo developed affordable housing in Chicago, Boston, Sacramento, Raleigh, NC, and Hyattsville, MD. She also provided technical assistance to businesses in Chicago for the region’s Clean Air Counts campaingn. Her credentials include a Masters in Regional Planning from UNC Chapel Hill and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.
José J. Lujano, Planning and Community Engagement Manager
José is a passionate advocate for the construction of more permanent supportive and affordable housing that allows communities like his to remain cohesive, socioeconomically diverse, and inclusive. In his role, José focuses on providing greater community engagement opportunities for neighborhoods in order to increase capacity and advance entitlements. He is the first in his family to attend college and has a B.S. in political science and sociology from Santa Clara University and an MPP from the University of Michigan, Ford School of Public Policy. A lifelong resident of East San José, he has utilized his organizing background to advance a citywide anti-displacement strategy, a citywide immigrant legal defense strategy, and an update to the rent control ordinance in his role in the San José Mayor’s Office.
Cassandra Witthaus, Project Manager
With a diverse educational background including ARCGIS classes, a BA in Anthropology, a minor in Film & Digital Media, and a LEED AP Homes accreditation, Cassandra brings 5 years of experience assisting with affordable housing finance applications to her role as Assistant Project Manager. While Managing small projects, Cassandra also helps the development team with applications, City and County paperwork, as well as researching potential future development sites. A resourceful problem solver, she takes every opportunity to learn about the challenges of affordable housing development and help the team find creative solutions to help solve the housing crisis.
Mike Schaefer, Construction Manager
Mike is a registered architect and LEED AP with 16 years of experience working with First Community Housing as a consultant in architecture, planning, and construction. He is responsible for construction administration and coordination, technical reviews and construction quality control. He considers sustainable design and construction methods to be standard practice and is focused on understanding the potential of new methods and systems and how they could contribute to FCH’s mission and vision. Mike also manages the design review process from schematic design through construction. He received degrees from Stanford and Harvard Universities.
Michael Santero, Director of Asset Management
Michael is responsible for for the financial position, physical needs, resident services, and disposition for FCH’s portfolio of 20 communities, including oversight of all property management programs. With a Master’s in City Planning and Public Health from UC Berkeley, Mr. Santero brings over 20 years of experience in affordable housing funding, database tracking systems for deadlines, capital reserves, insurance, and budgets, non profit tax structures and audit oversight. He works with a fantastic team to meet deadlines and objectives, interfacing with government officials, lenders, and partners to complete projects on time and on budget. He is a LEED Green Associate.
Monica Nanez, Sustainability Programs Director
Monica has a Master of Environmental Science degree with a focus on outreach and education, a BA in Social Work, and 15 years of experience working with local nonprofits, neighborhoods, and schools on community improvement programs and projects. Monica’s work at FCH involves working with property managers, residents, and the FCH asset management team on promoting and establishing programs and practices that promote sustainability across the FCH portfolio. She is a LEED AP in Neighborhood Development.
Branden Sarkissian, Asset Manager
Branden comes from a background in asset management for large banks. At JP Morgan Chase, he worked in the special credits group, managing about 90 properties with a portfolio value of $100 million. After joining Citibank, he took on exclusively low-income housing, managing a 300 million-dollar portfolio of almost 200 properties, He maintained relationships with 20 companies like ours. We are thrilled that he has decided to apply his skills in the non-profit sector. He is a LEED Green Associate.
Bianey Martinez, Asset Manager
Prior to working at FCH, Bianey was a property manager for the John Stewart Company for 7 years and got to know First Community Housing by heading all new building lease-ups. Here, Bianey is charged with a portfolio of ten sites, from multi-family properties to SROs, overseeing financials and ensuring the properties’ compliance at the local, state, and federal level as well as acting as the contact liaison between the properties’ investors and the property managers on site. She cares enormously about the work that we do at FCH and the people we serve.
David Munson, Director of Finance
Dave has spent over 20 years managing and directing finance operations in the nonprofit, alternative energy, and high-tech sectors. He also brings us broad experience as a consultant, having evaluated processes and informational needs to set up new accounting and ERP systems to help customers improve and expand business operations at publicly traded companies. David served in the U.S. Air Force as a pilot. He received his J.D. and M.B.A. degrees from Santa Clara University and a B.S.EE. degree from the U.S. Air Force Academy.
Patty Christiansen, Senior Accountant
Patty has over 28 years of accounting experience in manufacturing, information services, nonprofit, and professional services industries. Previously, she has been responsible for international consolidations, account reconciliations, cash management, asset management and interfacing with outside auditors and tax accountants, as well as managing staff. Here at FCH, Patty is responsible for all general accounting functions, reconciliations, financial statement preparation, and assists with audits & consolidations. Her MS in Accounting and Financial Management comes from the University of Maryland and her BS in Business Accounting is from the University of Phoenix.
Sophie Rubin, Office Manager and Communications Director
Sophie is the office factotum and recipient of the Rookie of the Year Admin Award. In turns, she is secretary to the board, event planner, executive assistant, graphic designer and media manager for First Community Housing. With a background in product design and applied art, she made a career switch to work in affordable housing, and couldn’t be more thrilled with her decision. As a graduate student in Urban and Regional Planning at San Jose State University, Sophie is focusing on affordable housing and community development finance and real estate development. She is a LEED AP in Building Design and Construction.
Kristen Yamada, Digital Literacy Coordinator
Kristen shares her passion for technology by coordinating the FCH digital literacy program, taking place at six of its affordable housing communities. She is responsible for curriculum development, equipment configuration, and class instruction. Through a partnership with The California Public Utilities Commission, Kristen’s focus is to ensure residents of FCH properties are equipped with tools and skills needed to overcome the digital divide. Kristen’s 15-year background in Broadcast Television and Information Technology includes work for nonprofits and government entities. She even won awards for technical support of NASA executives and high-level mission related activities!
Nyantara Narasimhan, Transit Hub Manager
Nyantara Narasimhan began with FCH as the Sustainable Communities Coordinator through the AmeriCorps' Public Ally program. She is currently leading a unique collaboration between FCH and Transform that aims to provide residents with easy and affordable access to a variety of different transportation methods including providing residents with complementary access to battery electric vehicles, electric bicycles, bike share, transit passes, ride sharing options, and more. Nyan is passionate about promoting sustainable modes of transportation as a way of breaking down socioeconomic barriers within the community, by making it easier for low-income individuals and families opportunities to get around and get involved. Nyantara received her Bachelors Degree in Public Health with a Minor in Communication Studies from San Jose State University.
Alysyn Martinez, Health Food Access Manager
Alysyn is tasked with analyzing the FCH portfolio to better understand the nutritional needs of our residents, and finding solutions where residents desire more access to healthy foods. She first served as a fellowship with Public Allies/AmeriCorps placed with First Community Housing to address social justice inequalities through asset based community development. She supported the Asset Management department at FCH as the Sustainable Communities Coordinator, providing resident services through the community garden, bike, and after-school programs. Before joining FCH, Alysyn completed her BS in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance, and a minor in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at San Jose State University. With her passion for social equality and increasing access within marginalized communities, Alysyn hopes to provide meaningful and impactful programming for the residents across FCH’s portfolio.
Sana Rahim, Housing Development Intern
Sana is a McNair Scholar and undergraduate researcher at San Jose State University. She is pursuing a BA in Sociology and double minoring in Urban Studies and Anthropology. Her research interests include the built environment, design politics, and social infrastructure, which led to her joining First Community Housing through the Bay Area Housing Internship Program conducted by the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California. Sana brings her knowledge of ethnographic research to advance the affordable housing movement and fulfill her passion for building inclusive physical and cultural spaces to provide housing that fulfills the potential of underserved communities. While at FCH, Sana is responsible for supporting the project managers during the design and project approval process, development financing, financial pro formas, loan/fund closing, and grant development.