The YPN Advisory Board has four subcommittees: Membership, Marketing, Professional Development, and Philanthropy. You can learn more about each below!
The Membership Committee is responsible for all things members and networking. This committee is responsible for connecting with members, welcoming new members, identifying needs of members, and increasing YPN membership. Monthly Happy Hours and other networking events are hosted by the Membership Committee.
The Marketing Committee is responsible for keeping all YPN members and the community informed of the exciting things happening. The committee sets the vision for and manages the overall marketing strategy of YPN.
The Philanthropy Committee is responsible for planning and hosting YPN philanthropic events and activities. The YES Golf Tournament and the Holiday Exchange Market are just a few of the ways the Philanthropy Committee connects YPN members to various nonprofits and local organizations.
The Professional Development Committee is responsible for the development and delivery of professional development training, resources, and activities for YPN Members. Through events like In the Know presentations, Onboarding and HYPE, the Professional Development Committee works to help YPN Members grow as leaders in our community.
2019 Advisory Committee Members
Learn more about the 2019 advisory committee below.
Kendall Yeager, Chair
Kendall was born and raised in Steamboat Springs, and is a 4th (at least) generation local. She received her B.S. degree in Business Administration in 2015. After 5 years working in fund development at Northwest Colorado Health, where she raised an average of $4 million annually through federal, state, and local grants, as well as private donors, Kendall transitioned into a new role in the City Manager’s Office in July 2018. She is a 2018 Leadership Steamboat graduate, part of the 2019 City 101 class and serves on the Steamboat Springs Chamber Board and the Economic Development Council as the YPN representative. In 2018, Kendall was recognized as one of Steamboat’s 20 under 40 Young Professionals. In her free time, Kendall enjoys skiing, mountain biking, training for running races, finding and cooking new recipes, feeding hot dogs to her adorable pound puppy, and a good charcuterie board.
Maren Franciosi, Executive Committee, Marketing Chair
Maren is a Colorado native, originally from Fort Collins where she graduated with B.A. in Communications and Business Administration from Colorado State University. As the Digital Communications Manager for Steamboat Ski Resort, Maren acts assists with social media and public relations efforts. When not she’s not at work, she enjoys hiking, snowboarding, cooking, learning about wine, and traveling. She is also involved in our community, having served on the IMPACT100 Steering Committee and is a graduate of Leadership Steamboat and City 101.
Hannah Hoffman, Executive Committee, Philanthropy Chair
Hannah was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia and graduated with a BA in Political Science from the University of North Georgia. From there, she worked for a political consulting firm in Atlanta for a year, and soon made the move to Steamboat. A visitor to Steamboat since she was 8 years old, the Yampa Valley has always felt like a home away from home. In a search for like-minded individuals and opportunities to give back to her community, she discovered YPN, and knew she had found the perfect fit. She now works as a travel agent for Steamboat Central Reservations, as well as serves /bartends downtown. When she’s not working or volunteering, you can find her hiking/snowshoeing, snowboarding, or enjoying the wonderful restaurants Steamboat has to offer.
Whitney Neelis, Executive Committee, Professional Development Chair
Whitney grew up on the front range of Colorado graduating from Colorado State University with her bachelors in Agricultural Economics in 2010. After graduation, she moved to the Yampa Valley to join her husband on his family’s ranch in Toponas, where they raise cattle and grow hay. After a few years lending a hand on the ranch and working at various local branches of the Post Office, she had the opportunity to open her own insurance agency with 360 Insurance Company and Greenfields Financial Services in Steamboat Springs. She currently holds an advisory seat on the Community Agriculture Alliance board and is the Vice President of the Routt County Cattlewomen. Whitney enjoys horseback riding, boating, snow skiing, and many more of the great outdoor activities yielded throughout the mountain area.
Melissa Valrey, Executive Committee, Membership Chair
Born and raised in Southern New Jersey, Melissa Valrey received her Bachelor’s Degree in Arts Management and a minor in Business Management from Stockton University. Prior to graduation, she attended Lorenzo de’ Medici International Institute in Florence, Italy to complete her thesis on Italian Renaissance Old Master Portraiture and Appraisals. Upon her arrival to Steamboat Springs in 2008, Melissa worked in the Sales Department at The Steamboat Pilot & Today and then transitioned to the Marketing Department at Colorado Group Realty in May 2011. In 2014, she took a position with Steamboat Sotheby’s International Realty as Cam Boyd and The Boyd Team’s Marketing Coordinator. During her spare time, Melissa enjoys reading, hiking, swimming, volunteering, and spending time with her family enjoying all that the Yampa Valley has to offer!
Alex Kleman, Board Member
Alex was born and raised in Steamboat Springs. He then moved to San Diego, CA where he attended Grossmont College. Through other stops in Austin, TX, Colorado Springs, CO and back to Southern California, Alex made his way back to Steamboat in September 2017. He is now the Banking Center Manager for Citywide Banks. He is part of the Leadership Steamboat class of 2019, Steamboat Rotary Club, and the Yampatika Program committee. He loves the opportunity to give back to the community and is able to do that through YPN. In his free time he likes to spend time with his wife and three kids, snowboard, hiking, mountain biking, paddle boarding and other outdoor activities.
Kara Larrabee, Board Member
Kara was born and raised in Burlington, VT and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Technology and Management from Vermont Technical College. After a camping trip in the Rockies with her boyfriend, she knew that Colorado was her new home and she landed in Steamboat. New to the community, she found YPN and enjoyed the involvement with like-minded individuals. Kara is the Marketing Director at Colorado Group Realty. In her free time, you can find her with her pup, Stroods, enjoying all that Steamboat has to offer. She loves hiking, camping, fishing, traveling and cooking.
Michael Marchand, Board Member
A long way from her southern roots, Michael made the move to Steamboat in 2014 from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. After earning a Bachelor’s degree in Disaster Science & Management with a minor in Geography at Louisiana State University, she felt the mountains of Colorado calling her name. Michael is a Real Estate Broker at Steamboat Sotheby’s International Realty and is also the local Project Coordinator for West Steamboat Neighborhoods. When she is not sharing the Steamboat dream with everyone she meets, Michael enjoys all of the activities the Yampa Valley has
to offer including mountain biking, skiing, snowboarding, camping, and yoga. Michael is a recent graduate of City 101, serves on the Colorado Mountain College Advisory Board and is a Girls on the Run coach.
Chris Mcgaw, Board Member
Chris grew up in the Denver area and worked for several years in the creative industry before relocating to Steamboat Springs in 2013. Over the next few years, he worked as a graphic designer, culinary photographer, television producer and as the manager of a creative team. Chris currently owns and operates Thunderhead Creative, a media production company specializing in real estate photography. Chris enjoys camping, dirt bike riding and cross-country skiing.
Jeff Moncrieff, Board Member
A Canadian, Jeff was born in St. John’s, Newfoundland and grew up in the greater Montreal & Toronto areas. Upon earning a degree in Electrical Engineering and Management from McMaster University, Jeff was hired as an outside plant project manager at Bell Canada, Canada’s largest telecommunications company. After 18 years and various leadership positions with Bell, Jeff decided to leave ‘corporate life’ and embark on a different career path. Having developed a love for Steamboat Springs over 10 years of ski & snowboard trips to the area, Jeff decided this was the perfect opportunity to make the move. So, in late 2015 Jeff obtained his investor visa and bought a window coverings franchise. Once in town, he joined YPN finding it to be a great way to make connections, both personal and business, and to be active in the community. When not operating his business, Budget Blinds of Steamboat-Laramie, Jeff enjoys snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking, local events and volunteering for various organizations such as the Chamber and the Routt County Humane Society.
Beth Melton, Past-chair
Beth grew up in the Pacific Northwest and received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Portland, Oregon. After completing her Master's in Teaching, she moved to the Front Range in pursuit of a teaching job. Through her work in education she has become increasingly dedicated to leadership in the field. In 2009, she pursued a graduate certificate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Denver, which renewed her interest in leadership in both education and the community. While in the Front Range, she had always stared longingly at the peaks in the distance, and so when a career opportunity in Steamboat presented itself in 2013, she jumped on the chance. Beth currently works for the Northwest Colorado BOCES. She is an early literacy specialist and "Lead Innovation Coach/Coordinator" for a $2.9 million federal grant focused on finding innovative solutions to the challenges of providing professional development to rural teachers. She is thrilled to be in Steamboat pursuing opportunities to learn more about teaching and learning, leadership, rural Colorado, mountain biking, skiing, and being a mom.
Geoff Petis, Past-chair
Geoff and his wife, Lisel (a Steamboat native and local city councilwoman), have lived in Steamboat since May of 2014. YPN is one of the first organizations they joined, and they haven't looked back. As an entrepreneur who loves meeting new people and broadening his skills as a young professional, Geoff joined YPN because it is one of the few local organizations for young professionals that met those needs. Since joining YPN, Geoff has made great friends, established a great client base, and learned new skills that have helped him grow as a leader, a business owner, and a young professional. In addition to volunteering for a host of other organizations, Geoff runs a personal injury and real estate law practice, Petis Law, LLC, and is in the process of getting his real estate brokerage license. Geoff and Lisel are expecting their first child in June 2018!