Our Team

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Kathryn McCamant, President

Katie leads the CoHousing Partners team. She brings the depth and diversity of her experience as an architect, developer, and cohousing resident to her clients. She is based in the Sierra Foothills in Nevada City, California.

“What drives me is the desire to develop neighborhood models where we can live a better ‘good life’ while reducing our impact on the earth’s limited resources. Americans currently uses 24% of the worlds’ energy while we make up only 5% of world population. If we are to ‘save the world,’ we must strive for more sustainable market-driven models that are attractive to the American middle class.” —Katie McCamant

A licensed architect and coauthor of the of the book on cohousing, Cohousing: A Contemporary Approach to Housing Ourselves, Katie cofounded McCamant & Durrett Architects and The CoHousing Company with her husband, Charles Durrett, in 1987. Since then, Katie has designed and developed dozens of cohousing communities in the United States and Canada. In addition to pioneering cohousing in North America, Katie has designed a variety of other building types, including numerous affordable housing communities and a sustainably designed (LEED certified) Unitarian Church. For the past decade, Katie has focused on the development side of cohousing projects. During this time, she has worked on all aspects of developing cohousing from project kick-off to move-in. Her expertise includes setting up project budgets, structure financing, and facilitating planning approvals, contractor selection, construction management, marketing efforts, and community policy creation.

In 2011, Katie coauthored Creating Cohousing: Building Sustainable Communities that documents the lessons learned after of two decades of creating cohousing communities in North America. She has also authored articles and chapters for other books. A recent contribution includes a chapter for the book Not Your Mother’s Retirement. Katie often lectures and gives workshops on various aspects of sustainable development. She was a founding board member of The Cohousing Association of the United States and cochaired several of their national conferences. She has been recognized as a Dwell Leader by Dwell magazine, and in 2008 was named Developer of the Year by The Cohousing Association. Her projects have won numerous awards.

Katie graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture at UC Berkeley and completed her graduate work at the Royal Academy of Art and Architecture in Copenhagen, Denmark. After living in Doyle Street Cohousing in Emeryville, California, for 12 years, she now lives at Nevada City Cohousing.

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Jim Leach, Chairman

Jim provides strategic oversight and consultation to CoHousing Partners, and facilitates the partnership between Wonderland Hill Development Company and CoHousing Partners. He is based in Boulder, Colorado.

A professional engineer with more than 40 years experience in design, construction, and development of sustainable housing, Jim is a leader in the housing industry. He specializes in the design and development of innovative and sustainable neighborhoods. In 1997 the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Denver inducted Jim into the “BUILT GREEN Hall of Fame.”

Believing that “community is the secret ingredient for sustainability,” Jim pioneered the streamlined method that helped create the first cohousing communities in Colorado. He lives with his wife in Silver Sage Village—one of the first cohousing developments in North America created expressly for proactive adults.

Annie Russell, Community Building

Annie is responsible for community building, supporting cohousing groups from start up through move in. She is based with our sister firm, Wonderland Hill Development Company. She conducts trainings periodically in California, collaborates with local community building resource people, and provides ongoing consultation to groups via conference call.

From creating a community vision and ground rules, to decision making processes and learning to talk about “the hard issues,” Annie is with each community every step of the way. She holds a BA in Sociology and an MS in Organization Development. She has consulted with non profit and for profit organizations throughout the U.S. and abroad in team building, technical problem solving, and leadership development. Annie lives in Silver Sage Cohousing in Boulder, Colorado.

Tanya Toot

Tanya Toot, Bookkeeping and Accounting Consultant

Tanya was originally responsible for the financial and legal matters for all of Wonderland Hill and CoHousing Partners Developments. She has over 20 years experience in financial analysis, financial administration, and construction accounting and also has an interest in real estate development. She holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Texas-Austin. Tanya is a PTO board member at Erie Middle School, choosing to make a difference for students, teachers, and the local community. Her family is her priority, and if she has time left, she is into yoga, reading, and baking.