February 7, 2024
Executive Director Insight - Quick Overview of Our Busy Spring
Interim Executive Director Karissa Trujillo gives you a quick overview of what's on our docket at Homeword this spring.
Executive Director Search Update
Hello from Jessica Vizzutti, Homeword board of directors secretary and head of the ad hoc executive director hiring committee!
The hiring committee is very excited to announce that the search for Homeword's next permanent executive director has begun. You can find the job listing on LinkedIn, and we encourage you to share it with friends and colleagues you feel might be interested and qualified. The job is also listed on the Montana Nonprofit Association job board and other places. Applications are due by midnight on Monday, February 19, 2024.
While we aim to have a permanent leader in the role by this summer, we are beyond fortunate to have Karissa Trujillo leading the way as our interim executive director. Homeword is a special organization that fills a growing need across Montana, so finding the right person to steer our ship is a top priority. We look forward to announcing the new permanent executive director later this year.
As we embark on this exciting journey to find our new executive director, your support is instrumental. Your direct donation to the Transition Fund ensures that your investment in our organization’s growth is both impactful and immediate. We are close to raising $10k. Can you help us get there?
Leasing Begins at Junegrass Place
In Kalispell, residents have begun to move into Building A at Junegrass Place. We expect to install on-site parking, the community building and a play area by late summer. We will continue construction, with projected completion of the community building and all 138 homes across seven apartment buildings by the end of October 2024.
Rental homes at Junegrass place are for local workers, families, veterans and seniors making 60% or less of the Area Media Income (AMI). Flathead County's AMI is $40,320. That means someone making $19.38 an hour or less can apply for one of these apartments. Housing vouchers are accepted at this property.
Through innovation at Junegrass we were able to use a solar arrays that not only reduce energy use and costs for common areas but also reduce our residents’ energy use and costs. The array at Junegrass produces energy that heats water at each building. The hot water is then piped and recirculated throughout each building to individual hot water heaters. This pre-heated water can cover most of our residents' hot water needs.
Openings at Missoula Properties
Are you or is someone you know looking for an affordable rental home in Missoula? We have openings at some of our properties in Missoula. For more information, contact Tamarack Property Management Company by phone at 406-493-0752 or email at [email protected].
Post-Purchase Class Coming Soon
If you are a homeowner, you know that changes, challenges and opportunities can come your way at the most unexpected of times. In response to the current needs and concerns of the participants in our HomeOwnership Center classes, our homebuyer educator and trusted partners at HomeResource, Missoula Urban Demonstration (MUD) Project and ClimateSmart Missoula are creating a post-purchase class.
The post-purchase class is just for homeowners to help you stay up to date with information and resources to protect your largest asset.These courses will include:
- Area market update
- Calculating affordability for home loans and other loans
- Credit and budgeting strategies for the long term in the face of rising costs
- Review of products to help you access equity in your home
- Financial resources for Montana homeowners and how to access them
Resources and skill building for home maintenance on a budget
- Information and resources for adding sustainability to your homeownership
Watch for more information from us about the post-purchase class this spring!
Our team is growing! We're thrilled to introduce Tori Rushfeldt, who joined Homeword as our administrative specialist in January. In this role, she supports all departments, serves as our first point of contact with the public and assists with office operations.
Tori was born in Oregon and raised in Washington but has lived in Missoula off and on since 2011. She attended the University of Montana, graduating in 2018 with bachelor's degrees in business management and psychology. She has managed retail operations and most recently worked at Tamarack Property Management Company, where she served as supervising property manager. There she learned an immense amount about Homeword's properties throughout the state.
With the addition of Tori to our team, Laurel Ramsdell's role as office manager has now shifted to that of finance manager. Working even more closely with Finance Director Matt Joseph, Laurel will focus on reviewing and creating financial reports, day-to-day financial activities and assisting in developing plans for Homeword's long-term financial goals.
Now Accepting Board Member Applications
Homeword is governed by a statewide volunteer board of directors whose time and expertise changes the lives of thousands of Montana’s children, veterans, seniors and workers.
Our board members lend their lived experience and/or areas of expertise in architecture, construction, law, accounting, commercial lending and banking, nonprofit communication and social services to ensure Homeword’s success in strengthening Montana communities.
Apply to be on our board! Applications are due Feb. 23, and the review of applications for our board will take place in March.
We encourage you to apply or share with someone else you think would be interested.
Do you have a great experience as a Homeword resident or class participant that you'd like to share? We want to hear from you!
Share your story and be entered to win a $100 gift certificate for Home ReSource.
Special Thanks to Our Generous Program Sponsors
Coffee With Karissa
Coffee With Karissa is an opportunity for you to join our new interim executive director for a chat! We will share a few updates, gather suggestions and answer any questions that you may have.
On select Tuesdays at 3 p.m., Karissa will host an in-person meeting at our office, and on select Fridays at noon she will meet with groups virtually via Zoom.
Click one of the Coffee With Karissa event links below if you'd like to sign up for a time to meet Karissa.
Homeword uses sustainable methods to strengthen Montana communities by teaching homebuyer education and financial skill building and creating safe, healthy homes people can afford.
Montanans empowered through our Regional HomeOwnership Center
Safe, healthy homes Montanans can afford
Program participants empowered last year
Our Contact Information
1535 Liberty Lane, Suite 116A
Missoula, MT 59808