Executive assistant, Chelan Valley Housing Trust
Rachael Goldie, a fourth-generation Chelan native, is working to change the conversation about housing in Chelan and Manson and be an advocate for low- and moderate-income earners in the Chelan Valley as the first executive administrator of the startup nonprofit Chelan Valley Housing Trust.
She graduated from Chelan School of Innovation in 2007, going on to earn her associates degree from Wenatchee Valley College in 2012 and complete her bachelor’s degree from University of Washington, with a major in global studies and a minor in human rights and policy studies.
She started her career in the hospitality industry in the Seattle area before returning home. Intent on getting involved in the community, she served on the Chelan Parks and Recreation Board and the Chelan Planning Commission and then helped start the affordable housing initiative, which led, in 2017, to city-wide talks about affordable housing and the formation of the housing trust. Her work was instrumental in securing $1.1 million in grants and donations to build the organization’s first affordable five-townhome community. She is now executive administrator of the group, a trained counselor, housing advocate and is training to process USDA loans.
What challenges do you see ahead, and what do you believe needs to be done to get prepared?
The need for affordable housing and the Community Land Trust solution to prevent homelessness and displacement in rural communities is beginning to rise to the forefront for policy makers and these solutions are now also recognized in our Valley. However nonprofit housing developers, now and in the future, are going to face lack of availability of land, drastic increases to building costs and decreases in available funds post Rescue/Cares act.
We will need to cultivate relationships with owners of surplus land for possible donations, find creative avenues for building supplies or designs, create self-sustaining programs and be incredibly diligent and organized with our grant applications and local fundraising strategies.
Engaging the community wholeheartedly in this effort will be key, as these tasks will take more than a handful of “doers” to complete. I know we have the right folks in our Valley to do this!