Welcoming Our New 2022 Board Members
We're happy to welcome four new Directors to our Board in 2022: Kateesha Atterberry, Michelle Chen, Jilma Jimenez, and Nav Kesher! Each new board member brings a wealth of experience and expertise to Bellwether, as well as a passion for equitable communities and affordable housing.
Kateesha is the Founder & Managing Director of Urban Black LLC. She oversees all real estate development activities including land acquisition, feasibility, financial strategy, and design & construction management. Kateesha has 16 years of unique real estate development, management, and public policy experience.
Kateesha acted as Commercial Property Manager for Pike Place Market Preservation and Development Authority, a nonprofit government agency responsible for the ownership, management, and development of downtown Seattle’s beloved Pike Place Market. In that role, she oversaw a portfolio of 225+ unique commercial businesses within the 9-acre historic district.and guided those businesses through the $68.2 million redevelopment of Pike Place Market from 2009 – 2012.
Kateesha is a graduate of the University of Washington, holding a degree in International Business and Commercial Real Estate. She is also certified in Construction Management and Sales & Marketing. Kateesha is currently pursuing an International Law Juris Doctor at Seattle University, and enjoys sports activities, traveling, local eateries, photography, and playing with her two small children.
Michelle Chen has 20 years of professional work experience in the public sector in a variety of roles. She most recently served as General Counsel to the City of Seattle Mayor’s Office, practicing municipal law and advising on policy making issues including affordable housing and community development initiatives.
Michelle previously worked for the City of Seattle as Deputy City Attorney and as project manager of the Housing Affordability Livability Agenda. She began her professional career as a real estate and land use attorney at Hillis Clark Martin & Petersen law firm and worked for Senator Maria Cantwell as Legal Counsel on the Environment and Natural Resources committee.
Michelle holds a bachelor’s degree from Bryn Mawr College, a Juris Doctor and a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Washington. She is an alumnus of Leadership Tomorrow. Michelle also served as past President of the Korean American Bar Association (KABA) and under her leadership, KABA partnered with Northwest Justice Project to host Home Foreclosure Prevention workshops for the Korean community, providing education and pro bono legal assistance to Korean community members during the height of the home foreclosure crisis.
Jilma is the VP and Northwest Operations Manager at Jacobs, a major multinational engineering firm. She has decades of engineering consulting and management experience in the Puget Sound area.
Jilma manages business operations for the Northwest geography, which encompasses Washington, Hawaii, Alaska, Oregon, Idaho, North and South Dakota, and Montana. She is a valued leader in advancing diversity, equality, and inclusion in Jacobs’ global operations.
Jilma earned a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Walla Walla University, a M.S. in engineering from Wright State Unitersity, and is a graduate of the Executive Development Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. She is a Civil and Mechanical Licensed Professional Engineer and serves on the WSDOT/American Council of Engineering Companies Executive Liaison Committee.
Nav is the Director of Data Science of Facebook Commerce and has worked at Facebook since 2015. He specializes in the Data Sciences and Analytics fields, bringing ideas to life, from early ideation and planning to development and growth.
Nav is an immigrant from India and has called the Seattle area home for the last 11 years. At Facebook, in addition to his regular responsibilities, he also serves as Diversity Business Champion for all of Facebook’s Data Science and Data Engineering teams.
Nav has been invited to conferences and top tier universities to speak on topics such as growth hacking, big data, machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data visualization. He is also an active peer reviewer for top machine learning and artificial intelligence conferences and journals. Nav holds a B.S. in Engineering and an M.B.A. in general management.