Valley Cities Advisory Committee
Eydie Gibson was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, moving to the Los Angeles area in 1970 and later to the central valley city of Bakersield, where she pursued a real estate career as broker, builder, and developer. In 1991 she was a founding partner in Gaskill Homes, a builder of semi-custom and custom homes, and served as Vice-President until 1995. In 2005 interest in urban redevelopment and adaptive reuse prompted the purchase of a downtown Bakersfield building, which was converted to the first mixed-use building, 1612 City Lofts. She also developed the first dorm-style housing in the central Bakersfield area. Eydie works in both the Bakersfield and Los Angeles real estate markets.
Patrick Kennedy is the owner of Panoramic Interests, a development firm that has been building housing, live-work space, and commercial property in Berkeley since 1990. The firm has focused on dense mixed-use, mixed-income, infill developments, typically financed with private funds. All of the multi-family housing projects include below market rate units (usually 20%). Since 1995, Panoramic Interests has built 483 units of housing in several mixed used projects in and around the downtown. In August 2004, the firm finished three projects in the downtown area: The Fine Arts Building, a 100 unit Art Deco apartment building, with a ground floor theater; The Bachenheimer Building, a 44 unit Mediterranean revival apartment, with ground floor retail; and The Touriel Building, a Modernist 35 unit apartment, with a ground floor flower shop. All of the firm’s other projects incorporate the Smart Growth principles designed to discourage auto use, mitigate sprawl, encourage local business, and enhance the pedestrian streetscape in the places where they are located. In April, 2007 Panoramic Interests sold its rental portfolio of 7 buildings to the Equity Residential Apartment REIT of Chicago for $146,000,000, the largest real estate transaction in Berkeley’s history. Mr. Kennedy is now focusing on developing SmartSpace® – a small, stylish, and economical dwelling unit, exceeding all governmental requirements for enviromental construction. He received his B.A. from Claremont McKenna College in 1976, his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1986 and his M.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology also in 1986.
Michael Michaud helps manage a three-generation small family real estate business based in Kingsburg, CA named Wigh Properties. Located south of Fresno, Wigh Properties owns and manages commercial buildings in Kingsburg’s small downtown and residential buildings (apartments, cottages, and houses) near the downtown. Their work also includes renovations and adaptive reuses of existing downtown buildings. In addition, Wigh Properties remains in active with local economic development efforts and with efforts to revitalize Kingsburg’s central area. Michael is currently studying design and planning through the U.C. Berkeley Extension Professional Program in Sustainable Design.. Also, he is a board member of the California Chapter of the Congress for the New Urbanism and he volunteers as a guide for San Francisco City Guides. Born in San Francisco and raised in Marin County, Michael now divides his time between San Francisco and Kingsburg.
Blake is responsible for site acquisition for new affordable apartment communities, forming partnerships with market rate builders and developers on mixed-income residential projects, and acquiring existing apartments for preservation or conversion to affordable. He is also President of Miramonte Development, Inc., which provides land acquisition and project management consulting for a wide variety of clients ranging from non-profit affordable housing developers and public agencies, to traditional homebuilders and apartment developers. He previously worked at Eden Housing, Inc., John Laing Homes, and New Cities Development. He is a graduate of University of California, Davis.
Jeff Roberts was born and raised in Los Angeles. He moved to Fresno to attend Fresno State in 1973. He graduated in 1976 and then pursued his graduate studies in Urban and Regional Planning. Jeff worked for the County of Fresno early in his career but has spent 18 years as a private consultant and the last 12 years as an employee of Granville Homes. Jeff is a Board member of the Building Industry Association and the Millerton Lake Area Chamber of Commerce. He is a past Board member of the Fresno Arts Council and the past President of the Tree Fresno Board of Directors. Jeff has been married to Tina for 32 years. They have a 25 year old son, Andy.
Since 1995 Geof Syphers has provided consulting and project management to deep green developments. As founding director of the Green Building Services Group at DNV-KEMA, his team consulted on 160 projects, from affordable housing to airports, including 40 LEED projects. He is a founder of the Council of Infill Builders, a non-profit organization focused on research and education about the benefits of good infill development. Geof also serves as Chief Sustainability Officer for Codding Enterprises, a California-based developer and holding company where he manages the technical aspects of planning, entitlements and design of Sonoma Mountain Village, a zero carbon, zero waste mixed-use community endorsed by One Planet Communities. Geof is a frequent public speaker, licensed mechanical engineer, a LEED accredited professional and holds advanced degrees in physics and engineering.