Kathryn McCamant, President
Kathryn leads the CoHousing Partners team, oversees the firm’s projects, and leads key training exercises for communities and staff. She also serves as liaison to the architecture and design consultants. She is based in Nevada City, California.
A licensed architect and co-author of the book Cohousing: A Contemporary Approach to Housing Ourselves, Kathryn McCamant founded McCamant & Durrett Architects and The CoHousing Company with her husband, Charles Durrett in 1987. The firm, with offices in Berkeley and Nevada City, California, specializes in sustainable design, cohousing, affordable housing, urban planning, and childcare facilities.
Since researching cohousing in Denmark in the early 1980′s, Kathryn has designed and developed dozens of cohousing communities. She played the role of lead project manager in six California communities seeing these from site search through move in. In addition to pioneering cohousing design and development in North America, Kathryn has designed a wide variety of building types including an innovative shared housing community for 24 single-parent households recovering from domestic violence situations, and a sustainability designed (LEED certified) Church.
Her work has received national recognition, including interviews on ABC, NBC, CNN and articles in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Architecture, among others.
Kathryn graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture at UC Berkeley and did her graduate work at the Royal Academy of Art and Architecture in Copenhagen, Denmark. She lived for 12 years in Doyle Street Cohousing in Emeryville, California. Kathryn now lives with her husband and teenage daughter in the Nevada City Cohousing Community, just blocks from the CoHousing Partners office.
Jim Leach, Chairman
Jim provides strategic oversight and consultation to the firm, and facilitates the partnership between Wonderland Hill Development Company and CoHousing Partners. He is based in Boulder, Colorado and travels frequently to California.
A professional engineer with 30+ years in design, construction, and development of sustainable housing, Jim has led the charge for cohousing, planned neighborhoods and urban infill development.
Throughout his career, Jim has been at the forefront of the industry in creating Green building strategies and community-based housing that combine quality design with maximum value.
He serves on the board of the Affordable Housing Alliance.
Jim has been a spokesperson for the Solar Energy movement since the early 1980’s and was active in the writing and review of the Boulder Energy Code. In 1997 Jim was inducted into the “BUILT GREEN Hall of Fame” by the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Denver.
Jim holds a Bachelor of Architectural Engineering and Bachelor of Business Management from CU and a Master of Construction Engineering from Stanford University. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Colorado and New Mexico.
In November 2007, Jim and his wife moved into the newly completed Silver Sage Cohousing in Boulder, CO. He is enjoying the community he developed, and the daily oh-so-short-five-minute walk to the office.
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.
Eris Weaver, Community Building
Eris Weaver’s career as a professional facilitator and group process consultant has grown directly out of her nine years of experience living and working in cohousing. She enjoys working with communities to improve their interpersonal connections, communication skills, and decision-making processes. Cohousing has fulfilled so many of her needs, desires, and dreams, that she now can’t imagine living any other way!
Eris holds Masters degrees in Public Health and Library & Information Studies, both from University of California at Berkeley. Her previous professional life included community organizing and coalition building in a number of local public health projects; managing health sciences libraries; teaching at the community college and adult school level; and serving on the board of several local nonprofits.
Her other passions include sea kayaking, surfing, yoga, dance, and sewing. She lives at FrogSong in Cotati, California, where she serves as Costume Mistress and Mistress of Ceremonies for innumerable talent shows and theme parties.