PHOTO BY JOHN STEMBER

New executive director for Housing Trust

Seyfang departs after four years

After four years of diligent work, Laura Seyfang is stepping away from the Big Sky Community Housing Trust (BSCHT) and David O’Connor is stepping in to become the new executive director for the local non profit.

The BSCHT formed back in 2017 through the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce. The goal was to address the increasing need for affordable local employee housing options and to look at other mountain towns for solutions. Resort Tax helped fund the BSCHT.

Seyfang, who turns 65 this year, felt like it was the right time to turn over the organization and leadership to someone else.

“After 47 years of working, I am ready for a little more relaxation time. I have many hobbies I want to enjoy including skiing, tennis, hiking, golf, woodworking and home repairs. I intend to stay active in the Big Sky Rotary Club and All Saints Church, as well as Habitat for Humanity. I would like to get back to leading two international Habitat builds in third world countries each year: one for high school students and one for adult volunteers. I also hope to do more reading and exploring in Montana,” wrote Seyfang in an email.

The BSCHT implemented programs over the last four years like MeadowView Condominiums, RiverView Apartments, Rent Local and the new Good Deeds program. They are also actively involved in other projects like the Powderlight subdivision near Ace Hardware.

“I feel good about all our programs and the fact that we have been able to help so many deserving local workers find secure housing situations. I am a big believer in balance and our community needs more of that. I am also a problem-solver—I have a lot of optimism and perseverance and just love chipping away at issues until solutions emerge. I feel like the BSCHT has made some great headway in the past few years and we have a path forward, even though the road ahead will remain challenging.”

Seyfang will enjoy her time away from the hustle and bustle in 2022. Her eldest daughter is getting married in Colorado in the fall and she plans to head on a two-and-a-half-week cruise in the Mediterranean Sea to see the Holy Land. Seyfang and an old friend will visit spots like Rome, Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

David O’Connor, owner and general manager for Bucks T-4, will step up to fill the executive director position for BSCHT on May 1. He is a “longtime resident with an extensive background as a local business owner and community volunteer. He has been concerned and involved with local housing strategies for decades, actively participating in the 2018 Housing Plan through the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce,” according to a BSCHT press release on March 7.

If you see Laura around town, wish her luck on her next chapter!  

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