2017
Brittany Benesi
Communications Director

Brittany Benesi

Communications Director

Brittany Benesi is the Communications Director for Sierra Business Council, promoting programmatic work that catalyzes community, economic, and environmental vitality throughout the Sierra Nevada. Originally from Seattle, Brittany has lived and worked in the Truckee/Tahoe area for the past four years. While finishing her degree, Brittany worked as a Youth Mentor with Seattle Tilth’s Youth Garden Works Program, helping homeless and disadvantaged adolescents develop job skills through urban agriculture. Once in Tahoe, Brittany started her work with Sierra Business Council as a Communications Intern and quickly made her mark with her focus on positivity, team building, and a commitment to the triple bottom line. Brittany is a graduate of Seattle University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies, a specialization in Education and Communications and a minor in Psychology. 

Personal Highlights:

As a child of the Pacific Northwest, Brittany grew up with a full appreciation for the natural world and the amazing recreating opportunities found therein. As a Sierra Nevada resident, Brittany especially enjoys running, hiking, snowboarding, stand up paddle boarding, and any time she gets to be outside with her husband, Steven, and canine companion, Shasta.

January 13, 2017

Mountain Grit Meets Personal Identity in the First Snowpocalypse of 2017

I’m going to admit something that would almost certainly have me derided on a certain beloved community Facebook group, but here it is: I am not a Tahoe local. I’m technically what one might call a “city girl”. 

Where I grew up, we didn’t get much snow. Seattle is one of those cities in the U.S. that mountain communities can’t help but giggle at, the ones where three inches of powder shuts down all traffic, all schools, and all businesses. I knew I wasn’t used to the snow when my now-husband and I moved to Truckee in October 2012. I was sure looking forward to it though...

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Leanne Kuchar
Office and Operations Manager

Brittany Benesi

Communications Director

Brittany Benesi is the Communications Director for Sierra Business Council, promoting programmatic work that catalyzes community, economic, and environmental vitality throughout the Sierra Nevada. Originally from Seattle, Brittany has lived and worked in the Truckee/Tahoe area for the past four years. While finishing her degree, Brittany worked as a Youth Mentor with Seattle Tilth’s Youth Garden Works Program, helping homeless and disadvantaged adolescents develop job skills through urban agriculture. Once in Tahoe, Brittany started her work with Sierra Business Council as a Communications Intern and quickly made her mark with her focus on positivity, team building, and a commitment to the triple bottom line. Brittany is a graduate of Seattle University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies, a specialization in Education and Communications and a minor in Psychology. 

Personal Highlights:

As a child of the Pacific Northwest, Brittany grew up with a full appreciation for the natural world and the amazing recreating opportunities found therein. As a Sierra Nevada resident, Brittany especially enjoys running, hiking, snowboarding, stand up paddle boarding, and any time she gets to be outside with her husband, Steven, and canine companion, Shasta.

January 05, 2017

The Future: Now Arriving with Smart Home Technology

One of my favorite shows growing up was The Jetsons.

I’m sure many of you will agree, the ability to walk through a machine and be fully washed and dressed was a pretty cool concept. While that morning-routine machine has yet to come to realization, we may be closer to The Jetsons’ technology than we think as Smart Home technology continues to expand and innovate.

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2016
Jessica Carr
Program Manager

Brittany Benesi

Communications Director

Brittany Benesi is the Communications Director for Sierra Business Council, promoting programmatic work that catalyzes community, economic, and environmental vitality throughout the Sierra Nevada. Originally from Seattle, Brittany has lived and worked in the Truckee/Tahoe area for the past four years. While finishing her degree, Brittany worked as a Youth Mentor with Seattle Tilth’s Youth Garden Works Program, helping homeless and disadvantaged adolescents develop job skills through urban agriculture. Once in Tahoe, Brittany started her work with Sierra Business Council as a Communications Intern and quickly made her mark with her focus on positivity, team building, and a commitment to the triple bottom line. Brittany is a graduate of Seattle University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies, a specialization in Education and Communications and a minor in Psychology. 

Personal Highlights:

As a child of the Pacific Northwest, Brittany grew up with a full appreciation for the natural world and the amazing recreating opportunities found therein. As a Sierra Nevada resident, Brittany especially enjoys running, hiking, snowboarding, stand up paddle boarding, and any time she gets to be outside with her husband, Steven, and canine companion, Shasta.

December 16, 2016

Shine a Light on Local Businesses this Holiday Season 

Build a DIY Economy

 

This holiday season, perhaps more than ever, the Sierra Small Business Development Center and Sierra Business Council are focusing on appreciating the businesses and organizations that light up our communities. Like the late, great, Leonard Cohen said, “Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”

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Paul Ahrns
Project Manager

Paul Ahrns

Project Manager

Paul grew up in Nevada City, spending his summers exploring the mountains and valleys around Truckee. His summers in the Sierra fostered his passion for protecting and sustaining the natural wealth and beauty of the Sierra Nevada region. Paul returned home to the region in 2010 to work on the first phase of the Green Communities Program as an Intern with SBC. He continues to work on the subsequent phases of the program. Paul brings his experience in planning and community engagement to his new role as Planning Technician for the Sierra Business Council.

Personal Highlights:

Paul earned his Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science & Policy from California State University, Long Beach where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and was selected as the Department’s Outstanding Graduate for 2009. Paul combines his passion for the environment and desire to explore the world. He has had the pleasure of exploring 5 different continents and innumerable countries. The highlights of which have been working with communities in Kenya to drill water wells without using electricity or fuel and exploring the history and culture of China.

December 08, 2016

Funding Affordable Housing in the Sierra

Are you spending nearly half of your income on housing? Have your adult children moved back into the basement, again? Are you married with a child and seven roommates?

If any of these apply to you – and they do for many – then you already know: affordable housing in our region is needed more now than ever. Rising costs and the limited supply of housing due to increases in short term rentals have led to an affordability crisis across the West Coast and the Sierra has not been spared.

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Kerri Timmer
Government Affairs Director

Kerri Timmer

Government Affairs Director

As Government Affairs Director, Kerri works in partnership with local, regional, state and federal agencies and officials to advance sustainable communities strategies, climate action planning, energy efficiency programs and other SBC activities.

Kerri is a communications and management specialist with more than 25 years of public- and private- sector experience in community and government relations, business communications, land and water conservation, and nonprofit management and capacity building.  Prior to joining SBC, Kerri spent six years with the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, where she served most recently as that agency’s Regional Policy and Program Manager.  Before that, she was Executive Director of a non-profit conservation group, operated her own consulting practice where she cultivated relationships with watershed organizations, land trusts and other community groups within and outside the Sierra, and served as account executive and creative director for a community and government relations firm in San Francisco.  Kerri holds a B.A. in English Literature from San Francisco State University and a certificate in Land Use and Natural Resources planning through UC Davis Extension.  Kerri has also authored a number of publications addressing land and water conservation and community sustainability issues in the Sierra Nevada. 

Personal Highlights

Kerri and her husband John live in the foothills of the western Sierra Nevada, where they enjoy hiking, biking, boating, camping and hosting backyard barbeques for friends and family.