The pandemic and remote work have fundamentally shifted the housing market with real estate decisions now driven by where we want to live and less where we work. Learn how different employers are shifting their hiring strategies and adjusting rewards by geography.

The panel will address the growing affordable housing gap and explore how local policies, design solutions, and emerging technologies can solve the housing shortfall. New advances in 3-D printing, modular units, automated parking, and co-living have the potential to reshape the housing construction industry and increase housing production.

Santa Barbara has become an entrepreneurial hub with many technology firms basing their operations in the coastal community, despite a high cost of living for their employees. To meet its workforce housing needs, learn how Santa Barbara’s architects are designing the live/work environment of the future and transforming underutilized buildings to housing opportunities.

Join us for a lively discussion of strategies to meet current and future housing needs.

This program will be moderated by Central Coast MIT Enterprise Forum Board Member Nina Johnson.


  • Charly Ligety, Managing Director of The Housing Innovation Collaborative
  • Michael McLernon, Senior Director of Compensation at LinkedIn
  • Renee Brooke, City Planner at City of Santa Barbara
  • Rob Fredericks, CEO of Santa Barbara Housing Authority
  • Michael Holliday, Principal Architect at DMHA Architecture + Interior Design


CHARLY LIGETY, Managing Director, The Housing Innovation Collaborative

Charly is a published author, serial entrepreneur, former licensed real estate agent, and commercial real estate banker. He leads The Housing Innovation Collaborative (“HICo”), an action-oriented non-profit housing R&D platform based in Los Angeles, CA. The Collaborative highlights the next generation of construction, finance, and policy solutions to address the housing affordability crisis. His recent work on rapid shelter solutions has been published with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Charly holds dual Bachelor’s degrees from Dartmouth College in Geography & Economics and Business Management and an MBA from the University of Southern California.


MICHAEL MCLERNON, Senior Director of Compensation, LinkedIn
Michael has over 15 years of experience helping organizations succeed through the development of their most important asset — their people. Michael has spent his career as an external consultant focused on helping Human Resource functions become more effective, and has served as an internal leader for multiple compensation and benefits teams. In his current role at LinkedIn, Michael and his team together work to ensure that the company’s compensation strategy and programs support the evolving needs of the business. He received a Bachelor’s degree in Economics, Business Administration, and Philosophy from The George Washington University, and studied at Trinity College Dublin.


RENEE BROOKE, City Planner, City of Santa Barbara

Renee has over 21 years of experience in land use planning. As City Planner, she currently manages 34 diverse planners who work on long-range studies and planning efforts, design review and historic preservation, current planning projects, zoning plan check, and code enforcement. Renee also has management experience in housing and human services and as a project manager for the City’s former Redevelopment Agency. She received a Bachelor of Science in City and Regional Planning from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo.



ROB FREDERICKS, CEO, Santa Barbara Housing Authority
Rob has served the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara, a local public agency, since 1996 and became CEO in January 2017. Rob also serves as a board member and officer of two affiliate nonprofits, 2nd Story Associates and Garden Court, Inc. Rob’s other civic commitments include immediate past President of the Pacific Southwest Region Council of the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, a board member and Treasurer of the Housing Trust Fund of Santa Barbara County, and President of San Felipe Independent Living. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Real Estate Financial Management from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo.


MICHAEL HOLLIDAY, Principal Architect, DMHA Architecture + Interior Design

Michael Holliday FAIA is a principal architect at DMHA Architecture + Interior Design, where he has been involved on a number of creative high technology office and manufacturing projects throughout the South Coast area, including the new Rightscale offices and the Santa Barbara Business & Technology Center Incubator project.  As a LEED-accredited professional, Holliday has been a leader in local green design and sustainable planning initiatives on the South Coast.  Mr. Holliday is the Director of SYNERGY Business & Technology Center. Holliday received a Bachelor’s degree in design from the University of Florida and a Master of Architecture degree from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo.



NINA JOHNSON, MIT Enterprise Forum, Central Coast Board Member

Nina has over 20 years of experience directing strategic initiatives for the city of Santa Barbara. She is a creative problem-solver who turns ideas into action. Her passion is engaging the public, leading innovation, and collaborating with diverse groups to advance organizational goals and a community vision. She is a strong advocate for local businesses and entrepreneurs, active in forming public-private partnerships to enhance economic vitality. She is currently working with the local design community to encourage creative use of vacant buildings downtown and transform underutilized parks and streets into vibrant spaces. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration from Drake University and a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning from UCLA.

Event Information

Event Date:  Wednesday, January 27, 2021, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM



  • 6:00 – 7:00PM – Panel Discussion
  • 7:00 – 7:30PM – Q&A
  • 7:30 – 8:00PM – Networking on Preciate Social

Everyone who signs up will receive their own personal link from Zoom. Please do not share this as it will unique only to you.

Following the event, we will then meet for a half-hour networking social on Preciate. Please note that you must use either Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge browser. Preciate WILL NOT work on mobile devices.

Online event registration is for Housing Solutions powered by Eventbrite
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