Kris Bernard - Board of Directors/VR Homeowner
Kris was elected to the Board in October, 2019. She is one of four Board seats representing vacation rental homeowners and has been self-managing her Palm Springs vacation rental since 2015. Like many of the other members of the board, she spoke at City Council meetings advocating that vacation rental owners can be part of a thriving community. She also recruited others to speak in favor of the industry, including other homeowners. She has been a member of VRON since October 2017.
Kris is a PMI-certified Project Management Professional and Certified Scrum Master specializing in Internet and Cloud Services. She has been in the tech industry for almost 20 years and now serves as a Vice President at a large web-hosting firm in Los Angeles. Prior to her accepting her current position, Kris provided Internet Technologies consulting services to a variety of small business owners.
Kris created the design website Better Living Through Design, which was named one of Time Magazine's "Top Influencers of Design" in 2008.
She received her MBA in Administrative Management from the University of North Texas.
In her spare time, she volunteers for various animal charities around the Los Angeles area.
Francine McDougall - Board of Directors/VR Homeowner
Groups Affiliated with:
- Sunmor Neighborhood Organization
- Founder of the Palm Springs Vacation Rental Property Owners Facebook Group (not affiliated with VRON)
- Board Member of We Are Limitless
- Pablove Shutterbugs Host Committee Member
- Supporter of Well of the Desert
Francine was elected to the Board in December, 2018. She is one of four Board seats representing vacation rental homeowners and self-manages her lovely mid-century modern Alexander. Her first visit to Palm Springs back in the mid '90s was the beginning of her love affair with the desert. She has been involved in Palm Springs vacation rentals since 2011 and splits her time between Palm Springs and Los Angeles. It is easy to say Francine has been deeply involved in the Palm Springs politics impacting vacation rentals. When vacation rentals became a big political issue in July 2016, she was at the City Council meetings speaking up against over zealous regulations. Francine has been a VRON supporter and member since Day 1, attending our very first meeting when a handful of like-minded vacation rental owners met in a living room to discuss the possibility of banding together for our common cause. Francine founded and manages a Facebook group for Palm Springs Vacation Rental Owners, helping to disseminate the latest tips and recommendations for VR hosts.
Francine’s work as a filmmaker and photographer has spanned 35 years where she has directed numerous commercials, films, episodic television and documentaries. She opened her interior design business as a side venture two years ago after so many guests and visitors to her Palm Springs accommodations requested her assistance with their own homes.
Francine is involved with various non-profit groups including fundraising for We Are Limitless, a charity dedicated to placing Rwandan orphans and in-need children into boarding schools and colleges, and Pablove Shutterbugs, where she mentors children living with cancer to develop their creative voice through the art of photography.
BRUCE HOBAN: Co-Founder & Board of Directors/VR Homeowner
Groups Affiliated with:
- Palm Springs Resorts - Board Member
- Palm Springs Hospitality Association (PSHA)
- Sunrise Park Neighborhood Organization
Co-Campaign Chairperson (with David Feltman) for "We Love Palm Springs - Vote NO on Measure C" the June, 2018 ballot initiative to ban Palm Springs Vacation Rentals which was defeated by a 70-30% margin. Co-Recipient (with David Feltman) of the "Hall of Fame" awarded to an individual "who has made a lasting contribution to our tourism community". Read more about the 2018 award by clicking here.
Bruce brings over 20 years of media and audience research experience having worked for ABC-TV and Radio, Warner Communications, CableTelevision Advertising Bureau and Katz Communications. He later spent over 25 years in Silicon Valley in senior management positions in charge of large software and infrastructure projects/operations for companies such as Gap Inc, Ticketmaster/LiveNation, TRW and four IT start-ups. His latest major engagement was for Verizon where the managed their half-billion dollar contract with the California Correctional HealthCare Services, a role that required extensive knowledge of state government and medical practices and medical records security/privacy laws.
Bruce has been involved with several non-profits since the 1980’s and was an instrumental contributor and legal analyst summarizing court rulings for 7 years on a website that tracked the legal fight to obtain nationwide same-sex marriage in all 50 states.
His technical and analytical skills, together with a lot of organizational experience provides VRON-PS with the data strategies it requires to stay focused on the important (and ever changing) vacation rental ordinances and roll-out policies in Palm Springs.
Reason for co-founding VRON-PS:
After purchasing a PS vacation rental Labor Day, 2015, I became instantly involved protecting vacation rentals after learning of the first City Council VR ordinance modifications on July 4th, 2016. I listened to the hundreds of voices of individual VR homeowners submitting letters and 2-minutes comments at the City Council meeting. These voices were basically ignored as more onerous ordinances were rushed into law from October, 2016 to February, 2017.
As individual homeowners, there was no single group representing us and we have been successfully perceived as out-of-town, greedy corporations with no community involvement. These inaccurate perceptions will take a long-term strategy to correct. I care about Palm Springs and our historic neighborhoods and believe the time is overdue to present the actual facts about vacation rentals and their importance to the people of Palm Springs as a major contributor to what keeps Palm Springs known across the globe: tourism.
DAVID FELTMAN: Co-Founder & Board of Directors/VR Homeowner
Groups Affiliated with:
- Palm Springs Airport Commission
- Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund
- Desert AIDS Project Partners for Life
- Stonewall Democratic Club
- Founding Board Members Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) of the Washington Metropolitan Area (DC). Former board member of the national PFLAG organization.
- Supporter of the Well in the Desert and the Gay and Lesbian Community Center
Co-Campaign Chairperson (with Bruce Hoban) for "We Love Palm Springs - Vote NO on Measure C" the June, 2018 ballot initiative to ban Palm Springs Vacation Rentals which was defeated by a 70-30% margin. Co-Recipient (with Bruce Hoban) of the "Hall of Fame" awarded to an individual "who has made a lasting contribution to our tourism community". Read more about the 2018 award by clicking here.
David has been a professional marketer, political campaign strategist, volunteer fundraiser and community volunteer his entire adult life. He believe that volunteering within the community builds even stronger communities.
David began his first political volunteer efforts on a Congressional campaign in his teens and went on to manage races for several members of the US House of Representatives. He honed his technique in campaign management during the "wave" election of 1994 and has participated in several races since then for LGBT and LGBT friendly candidates for political office.
In his professional career, he has worked as a direct mail fundraising consultant for progressive causes and on a pro bono basis was responsible for the launch of the direct mail fundraising program for the national P-FLAG organization.
Later in his career, David became a marketer in the financial services industry where he specialized in business-to-business marketing for Barclays Global Investors, a subsidiary of the British bank.
David also served on the Victory Campaign Board of the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund. Within Palm Springs, and was one of the lead organizers of the citizen activist group that successfully campaigned to tear down the Magruder eyesore at the corner of Mesquite and Palm Canyon.
Reason for co-founding VRON-PS:
We are a community that depends on tourism and gracious hospitality extended to our tourists is key to our city's vibrancy and success. I believe there are collaborative solutions to virtually any political or social problem. However, I believe our elected officials have opted for punitive approaches rather than collaborative ones. We should foster communications, compromise and conciliation. Instead, what I see is a commitment to citations rather than collaboration and cooperation. That saddens me and I want to do something about it.
Moreover, the opponents of vacation rentals in Palm Springs have painted an inaccurate picture of the VR debate as one that is about local residents vs. "outsiders." Like many issues in the public domain, the truth is more complicated. Although not all vacation rental people are full time (nor are all the opponents of VRs), vacation rental owners represent a mix of full time residents, part-timers like myself who are enmeshed in the community, part-timers who have purchased property in Palm Springs with the intent of retiring here some day and a very few who have little connection to thecity. That's the truth and I want to start educating everyone about who is really part of the VR community. The notion that VR's are dominated by "outsiders" is false.
We look much like any other vacation community that has a mix of full time and part time residents. So, let's start working together, acknowledging the good intentions of virtually every resident and homeowner. Let's stop vilifying members of our community who experience and participate in Palm Springs in the many different ways that enables our community to prosper.
Mike Flannery - Board of Directors/VR Agency
Groups Affiliated with:
- Palm Springs Regional Association of Realtors
Mike is a Principal Owner of both Acme House Co and Solterra Builders. He has resided in Palm Spring since 2000. Mike was also involved with fundraising and providing the campaign offices for "We Love Palm Springs - Vote NO on Measure C," the 2018 ballot initiative to ban Palm Springs vacation rentals, which was defeated by a 70-30% margin.
Acme House Co provides Marketing, Management and Optimization of Vacation Rental Properties in the Greater Palm Springs area. Acme has the motto "The most fun you can have at home." He founded Acme in 2000 and it has grown to be one of the larges VR management companies in Palm Springs.
Solterra Builders was founded in 2000 andprovides renovations, additions, and overall redevelopment to optimize the architecture, and more importantly, turn every space available, into something fun, enjoyable, emotionally moving, relaxing or beautiful. After renovations, he has sold many homes to buyers who enjoy and appreciate a special property. While no longer actively renovating home properties, he is in the process of completely remodeling the former Bank of America building on Palm Canyon near Tamarisk.
Kenny Cassady - Board of Directors/VR Agency
Groups Affiliated with:
City of Palm Springs Architectural Advisory Committee and Historic Site Preservation Board (former appointed member)
Palm Springs Regional Association of Realtors
Palm Springs Modern Committee
Desert Stonewall Democrats
Great Autos of Yesteryear
Kenny Cassady is VP of Business Development and Government Relations for Oranj Palm Vacation Homes and Palm Springs Rental Agency, and leads the team responsible for all aspects of the Oranj Palm homeowner partner experience. He is focused specifically on developing the Oranj Palm portfolio of properties, and advocating for their homeowner partners and the vacation rental industry. Kenny was also involved with fundraising and speaking engagements for "We Love Palm Springs - Vote NO on Measure C," the 2018 ballot initiative to ban Palm Springs vacation rentals, which was defeated by a 70-30% margin.
A Palm Springs local since 2002, Kenny is a keen architecture, design and real estate connoisseur, often interviewed and presenting to local realtors and at industry conferences. He has made a career in development and sales, including most recently as Development Director at Equality California, and formerly in a senior director position at American Heart Association. He also has a history of volunteer involvement, locally as Vice Chair of the City of Palm Springs Architectural Advisory Committee, and a regular contributor to Modernism Week. He is also a former director of the Palm Springs Modern Committee and appointed member of the City of Palm Springs Historic Site Preservation Board.
Born in Germany but a California resident most of his life, Kenny loves that the weather in Palm Springs allows him to indulge in his outdoor passions for hiking, biking, classic cars and modern architecture.