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SHA hires executive director

CHRISTINE McMANUS/summit daily news
Summit Daily/Reid WilliamsFrisco resident Bonnie Osborn has been named the new director of the Summit Housing Authority.
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SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit Housing Authority has landed an executive director after an 18-month vacancy.Bonnie Osborn, a Frisco resident with many contacts in Summit County, was hired this week by the Summit Housing Authority (SHA).Osborn’s first goal will be to secure sustainable funding for the SHA. The executive director is responsible for overseeing the loan assistance programs, fundraising and working with towns and the county to improve the affordable housing situation for lower-income families in Summit County.

Eileen Friedman, a program director, has been serving as the acting executive director. The former executive director left in December 2002.Outside work, Osborn spends time with her two children and their families, who all live in Denver. She is training to climb Mount Rainier in Washington and already climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Eastern Africa. She is a masters ski racer and a former Copper Mountain ski instructor.For months, the SHA board has been looking for the right person to fill the countywide leadership position, after a year of soul-searching and defining the organization’s mission and goals, SHA chair Doug Sullivan said.

Two months ago, final contract negotiations with two former finalists failed. Osborn does bring in High Country experience, too.Osborn initially moved to Summit County in 1990 and has lived several different places in the High Country since then.As president of the Summit School District Board from 1993 to 1997, she heard from teachers, staff and administrators about the lack of affordable housing.

When she worked at Colorado Mountain College as a division director in 1991 and again from 2001 to 2003, she worked with firefighters and students – two groups that rely on available affordable housing.This winter, Osborn took a temporary position as a Resort Express driver, shuttling “all kinds of interesting people,” to resort communities. In the 1990s, Osborn was a member of the Improve the Summit grassroots committee, which shared ideas to improve the quality of life for locals and visitors. She has also worked as an executive at U.S. West in Denver, overseeing 2,000 employees and a budget of $500 million.


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