MEET OUR TEAM
Katie Baldassar, Director

Katie Baldassar is the Director of Lake County Build a Generation. Her duties currently include leading workgroups and steering committees, leading organizational strategic planning, supervising staff, researching and implementing initiatives, fundraising, and writing and managing Lake County Build a Generation’s grants.

Prior to taking this position, Katie taught for Leadville’s High Mountain Institute and Colorado Mountain College, as well as the East Bay Conservation Corps, the Coloma Outdoor Discovery School, California Poets in the Schools and the University of California at Davis. She also spent time as a reporter for The Leadville Chronicle, The Aspen Times and The Colorado Independent. In years past, she has also been employed as a grant writer, poetry translator, research assistant, trail crew supervisor, river camp caretaker, chainsaw instructor, editor, and backpacking trip leader. Katie has a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame, an M.A. from the University of California at Davis, and is an Ed.S. candidate at the University of Northern Colorado. She has also completed a three-week course at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government for Senior Executives in State and Local Leadership, thanks to the generosity of the Gates Family Foundation.

Katie also currently serves on the Lake County School District Board of Directors, where she is continually inspired by the work being done to improve educational outcomes for youth.
When she isn’t working or volunteering, Katie can be found trail running, cross-country skiing, mountain biking, and hanging out with her daughter, Isabella, and husband, Andy.

To contact Katie, call 719-486-4114 or email katie@lcbag.org.

Rachelle Collins, Events Coordinator

Rachelle Collins is the Events Coordinator for Lake County Build a Generation. She helps with planning the logistics for many of Lake County Build a Generation’s meetings, events and trainings, and ensures that all of our events run smoothly.

Rachelle has worked for various other community organizations during the 20 years she has lived in Leadville. She is originally from Minnesota.

Rachelle and her husband, Scott, have two daughters: Emma and Allie. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, reading, gardening, doing puzzles, and playing games.

To contact Rachelle, call 719-486-4114 or email rachelle@lcbag.org.

 

Eudelia Contreras, Health Equity Coordinator

Eudelia Contreras is a Health Equity Coordinator for Lake County Build a Generation. In this role, she works with other communities to build a Health Equity Advocacy field. She also works to lift up Lake County’s health equity issues to statewide policy advocacy groups, develop connections with these groups, and support relevant legislation through testimony, story banking, etc., in order to advance Lake County’s ability to advocate for health equity at a statewide level. At a local level, she works to support the Family Leadership Training Institute (a project of Full Circle of Lake County, address agencies’ health equity training needs, and convene an Access to Care workgroup.

Eudelia has lived in Lake County for the past 23 years. She attended Lake County schools and has worked at a number of county agencies, including Lake County Human Services and Lake County School District. Eudelia feels that with her experience working, living and attending our schools she will be able to identify and work on the needs of our diverse community.

Eudelia has started a family of her own in Lake County and always talks to her three daughters, Kayleen (12), Isabelle (10) and Sophia (8), about her experience growing up in this unique town. Eudelia and her significant other, Julian Navarro, have expanded their family by adding not only his two children but a mare (Mia), a dog (Cece) and a bunny (William).

To contact Eudelia, call 719-486-4114 or email eudelia@lcbag.org.

Tara Espinoza, Finance and Grants Assistant

Tara Espinoza is the Finance and Grants Assistant for Lake County Build a Generation. Her duties include inputting data and preparing invoices. Tara works full time for Lake County Government as the Finance and Human Resources Assistant. Tara also spends her time coaching two youth basketball teams as well as scorekeeping for LCHS activities and Lake County Recreation Department activities. Tara is also a Notary Public for the State of Colorado.

Tara graduated from LCHS in 2003 and has had a career in banking and finance she since was 17 years old. Tara has four children: two step-children, Alisa and Julian, as well as her boy and girl twins, Marcus and Shyann. Tara enjoys basketball, volleyball, and softball along with a pedicure here and there!

To contact Tara, email tara@lcbag.org.

Cailee Hamm, Youth Master Plan Coordinator
Cailee Hamm is the Youth Master Plan Coordinator (Project Lead on Active Living) for Lake County Build a Generation. In this position, she coordinates community efforts to promote access to recreation and Safe Routes to Schools. Cailee earned a B.S. in Community Health Education from the University of New Mexico. She moved to Leadville this past winter and is originally from Southern Arizona. To contact Cailee, email cailee@lcbag.org or call 719-486-4114.
Cesar Hernandez-Gutierrez, Health Equity Coordinator

Cesar Hernandez-Gutierrez is a Health Equity Coordinator for Lake County Build a Generation. In this role, he coordinates the Lideres Latinoamericanos Initiative in order to build leadership among local Latino leaders. He is also working with residents of local mobile home parks to help them improve their communities. In the past, he has also spearheaded an initiative to increase the number of trained interpreters in Lake County as well as Proyecto Promotor.

Originally from El Salvador, Cesar and his wife, Silvia, have called Leadville home for many years now. They are the proud parents of daughter Sophia Grace. Cesar is also an Episcopal priest, and currently serves the congregation of St. George Episcopal Church in Leadville.

To contact Cesar, call 719-486-4114 or email cesar@lcbag.org.

Kelly Landau, Assessment and Evaluation Contractor

Kelly Landau is the Assessment and Evaluation Contractor for Lake County Build a Generation. She provides assistance to Lake County Build a Generation staff, action teams, nascent projects, and mini-grant recipients with assessment and evaluation work. In addition, she collects data to evaluate policy, environmental change and program efforts and assists with community-wide health surveillance activities.

Kelly likes the challenge of working across a wide diversity of fields and disciplines and at some point in her life has worked as a molecular biologist, economic development project coordinator, Basic MS Excel instructor and for the last three years, as Local Food Coordinator and Evaluator for LiveWell Chaffee County.

Kelly left the big city 8 years ago and now lives in Salida, CO with her husband and, as she would argue, the best dog ever made.

To contact Kelly, email kelly@lcbag.org.

John Nelson, Youth Master Plan Manager

John Nelson is the Youth Master Plan Manager at Lake County Build a Generation. In this role, John leads and coordinates an alliance of leaders, community members, and youth who are making Lake County a healthier place for youth and families. He facilitates the Youth Master Plan Steering Committee and works with the group to oversee the on-going development, implementation and measurement of Youth Master Plan initiatives. He supervises and trains the Youth Master Plan Coordinators and assists with those initiatives, as needed. John also heads up our tobacco prevention initiatives for youth and adults.

He attended Northern Kentucky University where he graduated with a B.A in Communications and Writing. He spent the first five years of his career working in HIV/AIDS prevention in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Denver, Colorado. He spent the next six years managing reproductive and sexual health programs at Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains. After that, he served as the Director of Prevention at the Rape Assistance and Awareness Program. Before coming to Lake County Build a Generation, he spent three years at Girls Incorporated of Metro Denver, providing educational programming and mentoring to girls from the ages of 5 to 19.

John is a proud Colorado native and has lived all over the country. He has spent the past 20 years working as a professional actor doing theatre, film and commercial work. His interests include animal rights activism, tarot, vegetarianism, office supply stores, hanging out with his mom, tattoos, ghost hunting, having good hair, cuddling with his cat, Rufus, and avoiding adult responsibility. He is new to Leadville but excited to have the small mountain town experience. He is actively involved with the V-DAY movement to end violence against women and girls.

To contact John, call 719-486-4114 or email john@lcbag.org.

Ginger Wolfe, Office and Finance Manager

Ginger Wolfe is the Office and Finance Manager at Lake County Build a Generation. In this role she oversees the finance and administrative functions of the agency.

Ginger has lived in Leadville for the past two years, and loves the small community and all the world-class outdoor recreational opportunities at our doorstep. Previously, Ginger lived in Oregon and worked as the Costume Shop Supervisor for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She earned her B.A. from the University of Washington in International Business.

Ginger loves spending her free time with her fiancé, Curt, mountain biking, skiing, kite boarding, snow kiting, cooking, sewing, knitting and reading.

To contact Ginger, email ginger@lcbag.org or call 719-486-4114.

Jena Finch, Youth Master Plan Coordinator
Jena Finch is the Youth Master Plan Coordinator (Project Lead on Communities that Care) at Lake County Build a Generation. Through this position, Jena implements the Communities That Care model in order to reduce youth substance, overall substance abuse and improve mental health in Lake County.
Jena earned a B.A. in Special Education from The University of Mount Union. She has served in Lake County this past year as an AmeriCorps VISTA through the Lake County School District. Jena worked with Project Dream after school programming to make a more sustainable and enjoyable outlet for students. She is originally from Youngstown, Ohio but is enjoying the fresh mountain air. Jena is a strong advocate for youth in Lake County and spends her free time volunteering, kayaking and experiencing new things. To contact Jena, email jena@lcbag.org or call 719-486-4114.