2017 Awards & Accomplishments

2017 Staff Accolades

Dana Totman, Avesta President & CEO, was presented the Stephen B. Mooers Award by MaineHousing at its biennial affordable housing conference. The Stephen B. Mooers Award recognizes the achievements of an individual who has demonstrated a passion for helping people in need and who has dedicated their career to increasing affordable housing in Maine with both innovation and diversity.

We at Avesta are very proud of the tireless work Dana does to promote and provide quality affordable housing for people in need. Thank you to MaineHousing for this fantastic recognition!

Core Value Awards are given annually to employees who have best represented Avesta’s Core Values – Humanity, Relationships, Stewardship, and Quality. The 2016 Core Value Awards recipients are:

  • Humanity – Patty Carson, Intake Specialist
  • Relationships – Angela Deraspe, Inn at Village Square Business Office Manager
  • Stewardship – Michele Reitan, Staff Accountant / HR Specialist
  • Quality – Sara Olson, Development & Communications Manager

Avesta presented its 2016 Property of the Year Award to Golden Park Maple. Originally developed in the 1970’s as three separate HUD Section 8 properties, Golden Village, Park Village, and Maple Grove, they have since undergone substantial renovation to preserve 32 affordable apartments for low income seniors. Ideally located just a short stroll from Saco’s downtown district,  with private, comfortable, and low-barrier apartments in a quiet, leafy setting, the property provides a prideful place for dozens of seniors to call home. Thank you to the team who contributed to its success in 2016:

  • Travis Heynen – Regional Property Manager
  • Amy Grant-Thurlow – Senior Property Manager
  • Molly Duda – Assistant Property Manager
  • Graham Cooper – Resident Service Coordinator
  • Denis Ledoux – Senior Maintenance Technician
  • Phil Gross – Maintenance Technician
  • Kevin Leavitt – Accounting Specialist

Greg Payne, Development Officer was elected Board Chair by The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) board of directors.

 “I am honored to serve as NLIHC’s new board chair and to work with such a talented executive committee, board of directors, and staff,” said Mr. Payne. “At a time of great challenges – but also opportunities – I firmly believe that together with our many members and partners NLIHC is perfectly positioned to advance our mission: ensuring those with the lowest incomes in our country have decent, safe, accessible, and affordable homes.” – Greg Payne

Read more about Greg’s accomplishment here.

2016 Awards & Accomplishments

2016 Staff Accolades

  • Lucy Cayard, Assistant Property Manager, receives Avesta quarterly “You Nailed It” award for exceptional customer service and demonstration of Core Values
  • Sarah Thurston, Assistant Property Manager, receives Avesta quarterly “You Nailed It” award for exceptional customer service and demonstration of Core Values
  • Alex Chase, Human Resources Manager, recognized by the Office of the Secretary of Defense as a patriotic employer in support of the Guard and Reserve
  • Katie Greene, Accounting Specialist, receives the final 2016 Avesta quarterly “You Nailed It” award for exceptional customer service and demonstration of Core Values

Core Value Awards are given annually to employees who have best represented Avesta’s Core Values – Humanity, Relationships, Stewardship, and Quality. The 2015 Core Value Awards recipients are:

  • Humanity – Hollie Sprague, Regional Property Manager
  • Relationships – Drew Wing, Development Officer
  • Stewardship – Dotty McKenna, Director of Finance
  • Quality – Ashley Russo, Intake Specialist

2015 Staff Accolades

Avesta Housing recently honored the exemplary service and dedication of its employees with the Core Value Awards. Avesta’s mission is to improve lives and strengthen communities by promoting and providing quality affordable homes for people in need.The annual Core Value Awards were presented to the four staff members who exemplified Avesta’s Core Values:

  • Humanity: We care about people
  • Stewardship: We manage our resources responsibly, efficiently and sustainability
  • Relationships: We seek meaningful interaction and effective collaboration
  • Quality: We pursue excellence in all our work

The 2014 winners were:

Humanity – Greg Payne, Development Officer. Greg joined Avesta in 2007, and has over 16 years of experience in issues related to affordable housing and homelessness. Greg is on the board of directors of the National Low Income Housing Coalition and Genesis Community Loan Fund, and serves as Director of the Maine Affordable Housing Coalition, where he is currently active in advocating for the senior housing bond.

Stewardship – Todd Rothstein, Director of Construction Services. Todd joined Avesta in 2013, and has supported an environment of creativity, accountability, resourcefulness, and inquisitiveness; all while maximizing monetary resources and achieving high quality solutions for Avesta properties.

Relationships – Emily Kosnow, Property Rehabilitation Manager. Emily joined Avesta in 2012, and has been recognized as responsive and collaborative, and is a listener and communicator.  Emily is willing to help everyone by rolling up her sleeves and getting things done.

Quality – Dennis Burnham, Facilities Manager. Dennis joined Avesta in 1999 as the Facilities Manager for the Inn at Village Square, Avesta’s assisted living community in Gorham. Dennis has continually performed high quality work, thus ensuring the immaculate condition of the Inn. He cares deeply about the Inn, its residents, and staff.

2014 Staff Accolades

Avesta presented its 2014 Property of the Year Award to Park Street School, located at 14 Park Street in the heart of downtown Kennebunk. Park Street School is an age-restricted community with 30 apartments, a mix of one and two bedrooms. Financed using low income housing tax credits, historic tax credits, and funding from USDA – Rural Development, Park Street School is a former high school and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  To earn this recognition, Park Street School has achieved solid financial performance, superior regulatory inspection and property survey scores, and fosters a high level of resident satisfaction and engagement.  In recognition of the team who contributed to its success in 2014:

  • Ed Beeton – Maintenance Technician
  • Amanda Gilliam – Property Manager
  • Travis Heynen – Regional Property Manager
  • Josie Howard – Accounting Specialist
  • Denis Ledoux – Senior Maintenance Technician
  • Angie Littlefield – Resident Services Coordinator
  • Michele Reitan – Staff Accountant

2014 Awards & Accomplishments

  • Avesta Housing receives the Outstanding Community Partner award from Community Financial Literacy.
  • The Portland Fire Department recognizes Avesta Housing at its annual awards ceremony for allowing the department to utilize vacant buildings slated for demolition for training exercises.
  • Hyacinth Place wins a 2014 Preservation Award from Portland Landmarks
  • Hyacinth Place wins a 2014 Honor Award from Maine Preservation for Adaptive Use

2013 Awards & Accomplishments

2013 Staff Accolades

(Photo by Tim Greenway)

2012 Awards & Accomplishments

  • U.S. Green Building Council names Avesta Housing the 2012 Outstanding Affordable Developer for Oak Street Lofts, a LEED Platinum-certified housing project in Portland, Maine
  • TD Charitable Foundation donates $25,000 to Avesta Housing’s Home Ownership Center
  • Bangor Savings Bank provides $15,000 to Avesta Housing’s Home Ownership Center
  • Bank of America Charitable Foundation awards $20,000 to Avesta Housing’s Home Ownership Center
  • Norway Savings Bank provides financial support to Avesta Housing’s Home Ownership Center
  • NeighborWorks America awards Avesta Housing $277,100 in support of its efforts to provide safe, decent and affordable housing to Maine families in need.

2012 Staff Accolades

2011 Awards & Accomplishments

  • US Green Building Council has selected Avesta Housing’s Pearl Place as one of ten projects nation-wide to participate in a new pilot project-based learning initiative. The initiative will allow practitioners to learn from real LEED experiences. The projects will be featured at the 2012 Greenbuild International Conference & Expo in Toronto.
  • NeighborWorks America has awarded Avesta Housing $245,500 in support of its efforts to provide safe, decent and affordable housing to Maine families in need.
  • Florence House received an Honorable Mention award in the 17th Annual Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Awards

2011 Staff Accolades

Development Officer Greg Payne awarded Maine Real Estate and Development Association’s Public Policy Award at the 2011 Annual Real Estate Forecast Conference.

Greg joined Avesta in 2007, and has over 16 years of experience in issues related to affordable housing and homelessness. Greg is on the board of directors of the National Low Income Housing Coalition and Genesis Community Loan Fund, and serves as Director of the Maine Affordable Housing Coalition, where he is currently active in advocating for the senior housing bond.

2010 Awards & Accomplishments

  • Florence House named Finalist in Affordable Housing Finance magazine’s 2010 Readers’ Choice Award for Special Needs Housing
  • Avesta Housing presented with the 2010 Preble Street Community Partner Award
  • $100,000 Housing for Everyone Grant awarded by TD Charitable Foundation

2010 Staff Accolades

  • Sara Forgione named president of the Maine Resident Service Coordination Association board
  • Michael Myatt selected as Board President of Maine Real Estate Managers Association (MREMA)
  • Sherrin Vail selected for second term as MREMA Board Secretary
  • Dana Totman selected as Board Vice President of Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority
  • Sherrin Vail awarded the McCadden Leadership Lyceum Scholarship at the National Apartment Association Assembly of Delegates
  • Greg Payne attended White House Domestic Policy Council, HUD, RD and Treasury meeting to address US rental housing needs
  • Deb Keller presented with the 2010 Joseph D. Kreisler Community Impact Award from Preble Street

2008 Awards & Accomplishments

  • Pearl Place receives the Multi-Family Project Recognition Award from the U.S. Green Building Council
  • Avesta receives the Rural Development Site Manager of the Year
  • Avesta receives the President’s Award from the Maine Real Estate and Development Association
  • Avesta receives a Housing for Everyone Grant

2007 Awards & Accomplishments

Logan Place named a finalist for the Maxwell Award of Excellence.

Logan Place, is Avesta’s original “housing first” model created by an Avesta Housing and Preble Street partnership that has focused on creating stable, accessible housing for those who are the most vulnerable and under served.

Housing first works because it removes barriers, builds trust, and creates community.

Since 2005, Logan Place has provided apartments and 24-hour supportive services to chronically homeless people in Portland for whom there had been no appropriate housing options. Tenants volunteer in the community. Some go back to work.  Others volunteer in the community. Their health improves; they reconnect to families; they work on mental health and substance abuse problems.

2006 Awards & Accomplishments

  • Avesta receives the President’s Award from the Maine Real Estate Managers Association.
  • Avesta receives a Housing for Everyone Grant
  • Avesta receives the Charles L. Edson Award