Who we are

Come visit us at the Alliance Center, 1536 Wynkoop in downtown Denver! We share an office suite on the 2nd floor with Streetsblog Denver, ULI Colorado, and NRDC.

WalkDenver Staff:

Jill Locantore – Executive Director

Jill is responsible for implementing the strategic goals and objectives of WalkDenver, including education, research, and advocacy for policies and practices that lead to a more walkable Denver. Previously, Jill served as Principal Planner for the Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG), where she worked with more than 50 local governments to develop and implement Metro Vision, the Denver region’s long-range plan for sustainable growth and development. Jill also worked for the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments where she supported regional efforts to coordinate land use and transportation planning in suburban Maryland, Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia. Throughout her planning career, Jill has focused on the intersection of land use and transportation with environmental sustainability, economic development, public health, and social justice issues. Jill has a Masters degree in community planning from the University of Maryland, as well as a Masters degree in cognitive psychology from the University of Toronto.  Read Jill’s opinion piece in the Denver Post, “It’s not about congestion, it’s about freedom.”

Jill can be reached at jill.locantore@walkdenver.org.

Jessica Vargas – Program Coordinator

Jessica provides technical assistance to DPS schools on a Safe Routes to School program in order to increase the number of children walking and biking to school. This project involves the creation of travel plans for selected schools as well as encouragement strategies to promote active and safe transportation for all students. Jessica is also the program manager for WalkDenver’s Project Shift leadership development program that aims to engage Denver residents who want to be advocates for a cultural shift toward healthy, active, “car-lite” lifestyles and a new way of thinking about transportation and mobility. Jessica has previously worked on bicycle advocacy projects in Los Angeles County, California and interned for the planning department at the City of Lakewood, Colorado. Jessica will graduate from the University of Colorado Denver with a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning in the spring of 2018.

Jessica can be reached at jessica.vargas@walkdenver.org.

WalkDenver Board of Directors:

Leanne Jeffers – Chair

Leanne Jeffers, MPH, is the Director of the Leadership for Healthy Community Design (LHCD) Program for the Regional Institute for Health and Environmental Leadership (RIHEL). Leanne earned her Master of Public Health from the University of California Los Angeles and for over 25 years has worked in the health and public health sectors, with an emphasis on community health, health promotion, and professional development. In addition to Directing the LHCD Program, Leanne manages the Coaching Programs within the RIHEL Advanced Leadership Training Program and Advanced Physician Leadership Program. Since starting with RIHEL in 2003, Leanne has also managed the RIHEL Advanced Leadership Training Program (ALTP), coordinated Emergency Preparedness training for public and environmental health professionals, supported other leadership development activities through the Institute, and provided training, facilitation and coaching to build professional and community capacity in the area of healthy community design. Leanne recently served on the Denver Regional Council of Governments Metro Vision Planning Advisory Committee, and is currently the co-chair for the Built Environment Strategic Collaborative, a Colorado statewide group of advocates and professionals engaged in fostering health through the built environment.

Leanne can be reached at boardchair@walkdenver.org.

Theodore Wenzlick – Vice Chair

Ted Wenzlick is currently employed by TIAA-CREF (Financial Services for the Greater Good) in the Denver office. He received his B.A. from the University of Central Missouri and his M.B.A. from Fontbonne University. Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Ted recently relocated to the Denver metro area in June of 2014. While back in Missouri, Ted volunteered with several non-profits in leadership roles, such as the Missouri YMCA Youth In Government Program (state committee member) and the Alumni Board of Fontbonne University (past board president) for several years. Ted was also honored to be appointed by Former Missouri Gov. Bob Holden to the Missouri Community Service Commission where he served on several committees that worked to promote the AmeriCorps/Vista program state wide. Ted looks forward to continuing his volunteer service in Denver! On a personal note: Ted likes to combine his love of travel with his love of baseball: he usually attempts to visit a few cities a year to explore the sites and to catch a game!

Jennifer Addair – Treasurer

Jennifer works at REcolorado as Manager of Product Management, where she has been instrumental in launching numerous new products, including a new MLS/public records system, new construction, and rental offerings. She has an MBA with a concentration in Marketing and Technology Management from UCCS, and a BA in Economics from Virginia Tech. Jennifer is passionate about being a pedestrian and public transit user, and is very excited to be part of the WalkDenver board and co-chair of the Program Committee. She lives in the Union Station/Central Platte Valley neighborhood with her husband and two cats. In her free time, Jennifer volunteers with Habitat for Humanity Metro Denver, and enjoys traveling, cooking, exploring Denver, hiking, and reading.

Susan Gelbart – Secretary

Susan has been a resident of Denver for almost 30 years and moved to Colorado from Georgia. She is a graduate of the University of Georgia where she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism.

She recently retired from health care to become a REALTOR® at HomeSmart Realty Group. During Susan’s 20 year career in health care she worked at Dominion Diagnostics, Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Centers and the University of Colorado Hospital. In 2004, she became a Fellow in the Regional Institute for Health and Environmental Leadership (RIHEL) Advanced Leadership Training Program. Since 2008, she has been a volunteer coach for RIHEL serving both as a peer coach and coach team leader.

Susan is a member of the Denver Cherry Creek Rotary Club and serves on the Community Service Committee for that club. In addition, she works with the Rotary Mental Health Initiative.

Mallory Luebke – Program Committee Chair

 

John Hayden

A 17 year resident of Five Points, John Hayden is a native of Denver with a passion for building healthy communities.  His experience helping people buy and sell homes in Denver for the past 12 years has given him insights into what makes communities grow or stagnate.  He became committed to making Denver a more bicycle and pedestrians friendly city after realizing that communities designed for pedestrians and bicycles are healthier and  rise to the top of people’s lists time and time again when making the important choice of where to live.  John is currently serving as the chair of the Mayor’s Bicycle advisory committee in Denver, serving on the board of BikeDenver and working on a masters in Urban Planning from the University of Colorado, Denver.

John Hersey

John Hersey serves as senior associate for transit-oriented development at RTD. He has earned degrees from the University of Massachusetts (B.A., M. Regional Planning) and the University of Maryland (M. Real Estate Development) and has worked in transportation planning and affordable housing in Boston, Washington, D.C., and Denver. Like so many other Colorado transplants, John enjoys getting outside to year-round sunburns and cold IPAs.

Margaret Olek Esler

Margaret Olek Esler is an attorney at Polsinelli PC.  Her practice focuses on real estate law, including development, acquisitions and divestments, leasing, financing, and environmental issues.  Margaret is a proponent of community engagement and real property and infrastructure development that promotes cultural and socioeconomic diversity.  She lives in Arvada with her husband and two rambunctious dogs, and works in LoDo in Denver.

Mark Fetterhoff

Mark Fetterhoff was born and raised in Colorado Springs. He graduated from Drake University where he studied Politics and Public Relations. Mark was introduced to walking and livability issues while working for aging and health nonprofits, including AARP, the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) and the New York Academy of Medicine. Currently, Mark manages the AARP Foundation ElderWatch program, which is a partnership between the Colorado Attorney General’s office and the AARP Foundation that educates older Coloradans about fraud and scams. You might find Mark walking to work, sporting events or local breweries.

Robin Fleischmann

Robin grew up in New Jersey and has an undergraduate degree in business administration from Washington University. After a working as a commodities trader in New York City, she switched careers and earned a planning degree from New York University where she specialized in economic development, managing large public-private development projects in the city as well working with small towns upstate that were dealing with changes in the economy. After moving to Denver, she became interested in urban planning for healthy communities. Volunteering for WalkDenver is a natural fit for Robin since walkable neighborhoods are essential for healthy neighborhoods.

Kristin Smith

Kristin Smith works as a computer programmer at Valdez International. She received her B.A. in Historic Preservation from the Johnston Center for Integrative Studies at the University of Redlands in 2010. She moved to Denver in 2011 from the suburbs of Southern California, in large part motivated by Denver’s robust public transportation and mobility networks. She is passionate about walkability for all generations and abilities. She also volunteers with History Day Colorado, and helped the Aurora History Museum organize and preserve artifacts from the Trolley Car 610 renovation.