Candidate Information for Your 2019 WMFHA Board of Directors

Posted By: Jim Wiard (deleted) WMFHA Updates,

Property Management Candidates:

Natasha Amira, Vice President of Operations for Avenue5 Residential 

Natasha began her real estate career in 2005. She has several years of experience in overseeing multifamily lease-ups, acquisitions, renovations, and repositions in the greater Seattle area. Natasha is committed to carrying out owner objectives, focusing on rent optimization and increasing revenue, developing effective leasing strategies, and analyzing product positioning, market conditions, and occupancy trends. Her areas of expertise include conducting due diligence, developing budgets, reviewing monthly financial statements, creating variance and financial reports, generating and reviewing maintenance contracts, implementing marketing plans, working closely with renovation contractors and new construction teams, overseeing property transitions, and supervising and training associates. Prior to joining Avenue5, Natasha served property manager and regional manager roles for Riverstone Residential Group/Greystar.

Candidate Statement:

I want to be considered for a Board of Directors position because I am passionate about the Property Management industry and would like to be able to advocate for continued growth, networking, education and fun in a capacity that can reach more than those who work directly with me. In addition, I would like to be a part of implementing change and offering support to the industry that has taught me so much. I love people and I love this business, I am excited at the prospect of being considered to work alongside with several others who are equally enthusiastic about the business.

Matt Shaffer, President, COAST Property Management 

Matt grew up in north Georgia, then spent 12 years in the USAF which took him all over the northern hemisphere. After attending night school to finish his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Information Science, he started a career in technology where he held the roles of software engineer; IT Director and Technical Project Manager. In 2008 he founded Salient6 where he served as CEO, creating teams that authored enterprise collaboration solutions and custom software for Fortune 500 companies. In 2016 he was recruited to lead the transformation of Coast Property Management first as COO, then President. 

Matt’s passion is in organizational behavior, strategy, leadership, and helping teams and individuals become all they have the potential to be. He lives in Snoqualmie with his wife of 23 years and their 2 boys.  When they’re not at the boys’ football games, they enjoy spending time outdoors in rivers, on bikes, and on trails.

Candidate Statement:

I would be honored to bring my diverse experience to the WMFHA board.  With my passion for people and teams, technology background, and facilitating of teams that manage all property types across Washington state, I bring a uniquely valuable perspective to WMFHA that will serve our members and ultimately our residents.

Lacy Devela, Executive Portfolio Manager, FPI Management 

Lacy has been in real estate for 13 years and is currently the Executive Portfolio Manager overseeing all conventional properties for FPI in the Region. Lacy currently oversees other Portfolio Managers in FPI and a total of 2500 units. Lacy is actively involved with Move for Hunger, Food Lifeline, Mary’s Place, and Northwest Harvest as the representative for FPI in the PNW, working together to increase awareness and involvement in the region.

Prior to this, Lacy was a Regional Manager and Regional Marketing Associate in the multifamily industry.  Lacy was the General Manager of a residential and commercial property management company moving into multifamily operations in 2011. She earned her Bachelor's Degree in Management with an emphasis in Sales and Marketing. Lacy has an additional four years of experience with actively work with Boards as she managed 30 condominium and HOA boards. She also holds a WA Real Estate License and Certified Manager of Community Associations® (CMCA®) certification from the Community Association Institute.

Candidate Statement:

What sets me apart from others is that I lead with passion and energy that empowers others to think big, stretch goals, and pursue those goals with purpose. Motivating those around me in all positions throughout the industry to increase involvement and awareness on important issues is something that I’m passionate about. I feel being on the board would further allow me to share my enthusiasm for our industry and increase involvement by helping to connect people in all roles throughout the industry.


Industry Supplier Candidates

Russ Pengelly, Vice President of Sales, Anyone Home, Inc

Russ’ involvement in the National Apartment Association includes Member-at-Large of the National Supplier Council Executive Board (NSC) and he is a Leadership Lyceum graduate. Russ also serves as the Vice-Chair of the Supplier Partner Alliance for the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC). Russ currently serves on WMFHA’s Supplier Council.

Russ previously worked for Zillow Group as a Sales Executive, Team Lead and as Director of National Accounts in his last role there. Russ currently serves as Vice President of Sales for Anyone Home, Inc., a maturing start-up in the multifamily space. Russ has enjoyed developing lasting friendships with both customers and supplier colleagues in the multifamily industry. 

Candidate Statement

I am honored to be nominated for a WMFHA Board position and promise to be an active participant in WMFHA’s many initiatives and in promoting the multi-family industry in Washington State.  WMFHA is one of the best-run NAA Affiliates in the country and I look forward to continuing to build on the success that has been achieved by past and present Board members.

Jennifer Firth, Director of Operations, Buy-Rite Carpet Wholesaler Inc. 

Jennifer started her career 20 years ago in property management, rapidly transitioning from a leasing agent to resident manager. For the past 12 years Jennifer has played an integral role as Director of Operations in the Pacific Northwest for Buy-Rite Carpet Wholesaler. During her time at Buy-Rite she has been instrumental in doubling sales and assisting in the restructuring of operations and outreach marketing. She believes the key to a successful company is excellent customer service. Jennifer is passionate, focused and action oriented. Ms. Firth also enjoys volunteering including serving as past co-chair and chairperson of the Emerald Awards Committee.

Candidate Statement

If elected, I will utilize my relationships within the property management industry to make sure member voices are heard. I would be an active participant on committees and events within our organization.  Over the last 15 years I have watched WMFHA expand, I would love the opportunity to continue the mission of education, networking, and working towards legislation that promotes the best interests of our industry. Thank you for your consideration.

Marsha Newman - Urban Forest Manager for the Pacific Northwest for A PlusTree 

Marsha has been in the industry for 13 years. After 12 years with CORT as a Sales Manager for Seattle and then a Regional Sales Manager for WA and OR, she joined A Plus Tree to bring the passion and urban forestry program to the multifamily industry in the Pacific Northwest.

Marsha graduated from Washington State University with Bachelors Degrees in Economics and Business Administration. She has served on several committees for WMFHA over the years and values her relationships with everyone in the industry, both as professional partners and personal friends.

Candidate Statement

As a member of WMFHA for 14 years, I have firsthand knowledge of the value of this organization. As Vendor Partners build trusted relationships with their Multi-Family counterparts, we all work together in ways that create a culture of understanding and commitment. The true value for all of us relies on the strength of lasting and trusting relationships and loyalty. We all have a common goal, and that is to make property managers and service supervisors able to provide the best experience possible for their residents, as well as a safe and secure workplace for the people who work on site. My commitment to this industry has always been to be available, to be trustworthy, and to be relied upon to deliver the highest standard of customer commitment. I have an enthusiasm for bringing new people along in the industry and sharing the passion of dedication and responsibility to customer service. As a potential member of the Board of Directors, I would listen and help to bridge any gaps, while also working to boost membership in areas needed and create a culture of member retention.

Paul Schaaf, Senior Sales Director, ePremium Insurance 

Since 2015, Paul Schaaf has served as Senior Sales Director for ePremium Insurance where his primary role is developing and maintaining mutually beneficial relationships with multifamily client partners. He enjoys working with owners and operators to create and implement customized insurance solutions on a national level with a primary emphasis in the Pacific NW. Prior to joining ePremium, Paul spent 5 years with RentCollect Global (now Assurant Recovery) where he worked his way from a Regional Account Manager role up to National Business Development.

Before joining the apartment industry, Paul spent 5 years as a coach and personal trainer, working with individuals as well as teams to improve fitness for lifestyle, competition, and injury prevention. He graduated from Washington State University in 2006 with a BS in Kinesiology. In his free time, Paul enjoys the outdoors, snowboarding, hiking, traveling and spending time with his fiancé Kirsten and goldendoodle puppy, Bodhi.

Candidate Statement

I have had the pleasure of connecting with many WMFHA members and look forward to getting to know many more. If elected to the WMFHA board, my number one priority will be to foster connection between supplier and management members and help to maximize opportunities for professional development and camaraderie. As a supplier member, I have been fortunate enough to have WMFHA members and industry professionals offer guidance and mentorship to me, and I look forward to returning the favor.

In addition to helping all members get the most of their WMFHA membership, I will work to promote the interests of our industry. Our region has seen incredible growth in recent years and has been the birthplace of many fantastically innovative companies. In order to continue this growth, we must ensure that developers, owners and operators are able to continue to provide high-quality housing to their residents. We do this by working with our community to support charitable organizations like Mary’s Place and DAWN, and working with the legislature to promote and protect sensible policies and voluntary programs such as MFTE. As a renter myself and a supplier to the apartment industry, I hope to help bridge the gap between the interests of our industry and those of renters.