FM Leadership Academy

Proud to Run this! Facilities Management (orange and white logo)Introduction

The FM Leadership Academy is specific to CSU Facilities Management. It is free to FM employees who participate, created by FM subject area experts. The intent is to open pathways for career advancement and to help employees explore different FM fields. It establishes opportunities for progression of roles and provides foundational learning for how to be a successful leader within our department. The purpose of the academy is to develop the expertise and contextual leadership skills through learning about the four main pillars of our business: Finance and Administration, Planning, Design, Construction; Utilities; Operations and Maintenance. Participants will cycle through all four topics areas during their time in the Academy.

Learn more by reading this introduction and update to the FM Leadership Academy:

English - FM Weekly Communication July 21, 2021 - Issue 128 / FM Weekly Communication September 17, 2021 - Issue 134

español - Comunicación Semanal de FM - julio 21, 2021 - Edición 128 / Comunicación Semanal de FM - septiembre 17, 2021 - Edición 134


Application submissions are closed for Fall 2021. The application asked for interested participants to describe what interests them about the FM Leadership Academy, what they hope to gain from it, and how it will benefit their career goals. It also included first and last name, phone and email, FM section and current supervisor name, using the form below.

English Application

Spanish Application (la solicitud en español)

Who can apply?

  • Full-time FM State Classified and Administrative Professional employees who have been in their position for a year or more.
  • State Classified employees must have a satisfactory review of 2 or above.
  • Administrative Professional employees must have a review of 3 or above.
  • Anyone at any level of their career in all of the FM sections and groups may apply.
  • Supervisor approval is required, indicated through a signature on the one-page application.
  • Spanish translation services available, if needed.

Application period for the Fall Session of the FM Leadership Academy was July 26 - August 6, 2021.

Applications were submitted via email or in person at the HR/Personnel Office in Facilities Management North.

Contact Information 

FM Human Resources/Personnel Office

Michelle Tate, 970-491-0323 or
Kathy Brady, 491-0317 or


  • July 26 - August 6, 2021 / Application submission to the FM Leadership Academy for the Fall Session
  • August 9-13 / Application Review by Selection Committee
  • Week of August 16 / Selection announcement
  • September 13 / Academy starts
  • Mid-December / Academy certificate & recognition ceremony

FM Leadership Academy Schedule 2021

Programa de la Academia de Liderazgo de FM 2021


Classes will be attended during work hours.  No overtime needed. Classes are once a week during 4-hour blocks of time. There will be a variety of instruction styles in a classroom setting with time for practical discussion with the FM experts and participation from the class is an expectation. Spanish translation for classes will be available.

Examples of classes in the academy are:

  • Developing Charge Rates
  • Performance Management
  • Maintenance and Operations of Building Systems
  • Construction Project Management

FM Leadership Academy Curriculum (el currículo en español)

Presenter Bios for the FM Leadership Academy

Tom Satterly, FM AVP Office

Tom currently serves as Associate Vice President for Facilities Management at Colorado State University. His experience includes 30 years of progressive operational management expertise and 10 years in higher education across a broad range of facility disciplines including planning, design and construction, operations and maintenance, utilities, sustainability, safety and fiscal management. Tom is a registered Professional Engineer with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in engineering and a MBA degree.

Stephanie Swanson, FM Finance

Stephanie Swanson is the Assistant Director of Facilities Management Finance, overseeing all facets of finance and accounting here in FM at CSU.  She started in the accounting field at the age of 17 when she got a job as a bookkeeper at the local bowling alleys here in Fort Collins.  While working full-time, she went on to earn her Bachelor’s in Accounting, MBA with accounting concentration, and is currently sitting for the Certified Public Accounting exam (CPA).  Stephanie has worked in Higher Ed accounting for the last 18 years in both for-profit and not-for-profit education.  Prior to coming to CSU, she was an Accounting Manager at the University of Colorado - Boulder Facilities overseeing their FM area accountants and the construction accounting team.  Stephanie has attended three of the four APPA Institutes, similar to what we are covering here with the Leadership Academy.  She is very excited to share the accounting and finance curriculum with you and hopes you get as much out of the Leadership Academy as she has from the APPA Institutes.

Connie Schunter, FM Finance

Connie Schunter has been with Facilities Management for fifteen years, with several roles in a variety of accounting areas, which has helped her gain great experience in CSU, and FM accounting procedures.  She served as work lead and Accounting Supervisor for Remodel & Construction Services, for eleven years and then three years as the Utility Accountant.  Currently she is an Area Accountant for overhead units, Outdoor Services, Building Services, and leases.  Connie has attended the APPA Supervisor’s Toolkit Training and earned her Supervisor Development Certification at CSU.  She holds a bachelor’s in Early Education with a concentration in Business Management.

Monica Roth, FM Finance

Monica Roth started her journey in the Accounting and IT fields at Front Range Community College where she received an AAS in Accounting and Information Technologies in 2001.  For the next 10 years, she held accounting positions in the agriculture and medical fields.  In 2007, Monica joined the FM Accounting Team and has been a student at CSU almost as long.  While working full time she received a BS in Accounting (2008-2014) and a Master’s in Computer Information Systems (2014-2017).  Along with her Master’s degree, Monica also obtained two graduate certificates, one in Accounting and the other in Business Intelligence.  In addition, Monica is a Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM).   Monica has served in several areas within the FM accounting team, her first year spent with Capital Construction.  Since then, she has become the Area Accountant for Trades, Logistics, P3 Buildings, and Trades Operations.  Monica is currently the Accounting Systems Specialist and report writer for systems such as FM’s IWMS (Integrated Work Management System).         

Michelle Tate, FM Human Resources

Michelle Tate has 20+ years of Human Resources experience in higher education and serves as the Assistant Director for FM’s Human Resources.  She oversees all areas of HR including, compensation, job classification, training and organizational development, employee relations and performance management.  Michelle holds a BS in Human Resource Management, and an MBA degree.  Before working in Facilities Management, she worked in main HR’s Employment office where she became the Employment Manager.  Prior to that, she worked in the Human Resources and health care industry for both private sector and the military.  She served eight years in the United States Air Force, and is a Desert Storm Veteran.

Kathy Brady, FM Human Resources

Kathy Brady has been with Facilities Management for almost fourteen years.  She worked in the FM Payroll/Personnel Office as an Accounting Tech II, and then worked as a Project Accountant for Remodel and Construction Services for two years.  She returned to the FM Payroll/Personnel section where she currently serves as section supervisor.  Kathy has completed and is certified in the CSU Supervisor Development Program. She holds an AA in Liberal Arts, a BA in English Literature, and held a State of California K-12 Teaching Credential with specialization in Remedial Reading.

Patrick Thai, FM Human Resources

Patrick Thai is an Accounting Technician III with the Facilities Personnel/Payroll office, and the department’s primary point of contact for Time Clock Plus issues and Family Medical Leave.  He started with Facilities in December 2016, immediately upon graduating from CSU with a BS in Business (Accounting concentration.) While attending CSU as a student, he was also a student finance intern for CSU CVMBS. He was a transfer student to CSU, coming from Front Range Community College where he earned an AA in Business. Prior to this, he served as an Infantryman in the US Army, as well as a defense contractor. He has spent a total of three years in Iraq and eight months in Afghanistan.

Tim Kemp, FM Engineering & Capital Construction

Tim Kemp serves as the Assistant Director for Engineering and Capital Construction in Facilities Management at Colorado State University (CSU).  Tim has an Associate’s degree in Architectural / Structural Drafting and a BS in Civil Engineering from CSU.  Tim became a licensed Professional Engineer in 2004 and a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional (LEED AP) in 2008.  Tim spent the first 12 years of his career in consulting engineering, worked for the City of Fort Collins for 10 years, and has been with CSU for 2 years.  Tim’s experience covers engineering design, master planning, project management, and program management.  Tim is currently working on an MS degree in Systems Engineering with a focus on business process optimization.  Tim is a year-round bicycle commuter and loves to be outdoors.

Tracey Abel, FM Engineering & Capital Construction

Tracy Abel serves as the Supervisor of Capital Construction in Facilities Management.  Tracey owned and operated her own business in residential interior design and as a commercial window covering sub-contractor for 15 years before moving to Fort Collins. She has been with CSU for the past 14 years.  In her supervisory role for the past 3 ½+ years, she has had oversite of over the Capital Project Manager Team, including Contracts Manager with over $565M in capital projects. In addition, Tracey is the liaison/ owner representative for the Private-Public Partnerships (P3).   

Outside of CSU, Tracey serves on the board of Ripple Intent. This is a non-profit organization, which works to bring the issues of design and construction to the forefront and find solutions in how to make the industry stronger through soft skills; subcontractor strengthening andoutreach; and connection for all diverse backgrounds and skill sets.

Carol Dollard, FM Engineering & Capital Construction

Carol Dollard is an Energy Engineer in Facilities Management and co-chair of the President’s Sustainability Commission.  In her 22+ years at CSU, she has helped manage the university’s utility systems, helped make university operations more sustainable, and helped report sustainability metrics.  These efforts include: 21 PV installations totaling over 6,800 kW (with 21 more underway) and $15+ millions of energy and water efficiency projects; overseeing the campus domestic water system as the Operator in Responsible Charge; leading a team that conducts the University’s annual greenhouse gas inventory and produces biannual updates to the CSU Climate Action Plan; and working with a PSC team that conducts the STARS reporting every three years.

Susanne Cordery, FM Engineering & Capital Construction

Susanne Cordery is the environmental engineer in CSU’s Facilities Management Department. She is responsible for the University’s environmental regulatory compliance in the areas of drinking water, stormwater, surface water discharges, floodplain management, air emissions and composting. She is a professional engineer with more than 35 years of experience. Prior to joining CSU in 2007, she was an environmental consultant. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Michigan Technological University, and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Southern California. Susanne enjoys being in the outdoors, skiing in the winter and fly fishing in the fall.

Michael Randall, FM Engineering & Capital Construction

Michael Randall is an electrical engineer with 19 years of work experience within Facilities Management and 17 years of engineering experience in the private sector. He performs electrical planning, design, inspections, operations and maintenance for all of CSU’s campuses. Michael has an extensive background in all aspects of electrical commercial and utility systems. Michael managed the Maintenance Engineering section and was in charge of the electrical and mechanical engineers as well as the engineering technicians before stepping down in 2019 to focus on electrical engineering and NRRC building management.

In addition, Michael teaches basic electrical classes for the Rocky Mountain Electric Metering Association and Construction Management Certification Program. Michael Randall has completed the APPA Leadership Academy and CSU’s Supervisor Development Program.  He received his electrical engineering degree from California State University, with an emphasis in electrical power engineering. He is registered as a professional electrical engineer in the states of Colorado and California, a certified ICC (International Code Council) Electrical Inspector and LEED AP.

Mike Rush, FM Capital Planning & Design

Mike Rush serves the state of Colorado as the Office of the State Architect Delegate for Capital Design and Construction Procurement, Controlled Maintenance, Code Compliance and Contract Administration and is the University Architect and Chief Building Official for Colorado State University. Mike also teaches development planning through the use of Building Information Modeling (BIM) in the construction management department. Mike was a framing carpenter and contractor early in his career and was able to attend classes as a non-traditional student and graduate with a degree in architecture from Kansas State University. Mike became a licensed architect in 1999 and certified building official in 2010. Mike is currently wrapping up an advanced degree in construction management from CSU and plans to graduate in December.

Shelly Carroll, FM Capital Planning & Design

Shelly Carroll has a BS in Civil Engineering and an MS in Economics.  As an officer in the Air Force, she worked as a Facility Manager for a research laboratory at Wright Patterson AFB in Dayton, OH.  She later worked as a construction project manager at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, and after coming to Colorado, she was employed as a Facility Manager by the Weld County School District.  She has been responsible for program plans and capital project approvals since starting with CSU in 2007.  During that time, the university has been involved in the largest building expansion since the 1960s with projects ranging from dormitories and a new stadium to research and classroom buildings.

Megan Gaston, FM Capital Planning & Design

Megan Gaston is a member of the Planning, Design and Construction Team whose responsibilities include programming, conceptual modeling and design of proposed buildings as an Intern Staff Architect; management of the Colorado State University (CSU) Building Department as an International Code Council (ICC) Certified Building Official and management of the Colorado State University Facilities Planning, Design and Construction Standards.

Megan has worked at CSU full-time since 2016 and previously as a student from 2011-2013. Megan has a Bachelor’s of Architecture from the University of Oregon and a Master’s of Science in Construction Management and Sustainable Building from Colorado State University

Becca Mueller, FM Capital Planning & Design

Becca Mueller is a member of the Planning, Design and Construction Team, whose primary role is within the CSU Building Department. As an International Code Council (ICC) certified Permit Technician and multi-trade Plans Examiner, Becca’s responsibilities include reviewing construction drawings for code compliance, issuing permits, and coordinating the construction inspection process.

Additionally, Becca is also responsible for facilitating and administering the maintenance of the CSU Facilities Planning, Design and Construction Standards.

Becca has worked for the Building Department in full-time capacity since mid-2019. Prior to working in the Building Department, Becca was a Program Manager for the Facilities Management (FM) AVP’s Office from 2013-2019 and was a student employee in the FM Utility Services group from 2010-2012. Becca is a CSU alum with a BA in English.

Lindsay Brown, FM Capital Planning & Design

Lindsay Brown administers Design and Construction Procurement on behalf of the University’s Office of the State Architect Delegation. Lindsay’s role is to ensure equitability in all construction procurement and support Capital Construction, Remodel, and Construction Services to procure design and construction services within the guidelines of the State Statues. Lindsay also serves as the primary liaison to the AEC industry during procurement and leads the development of all professional service solicitations over $100,000 and construction solicitations over $150,000. Lindsay began working in Facilities Management in 2010 as a student and after graduating in 2013 with a Bachelor’s of Arts in English, secured a full-time position. Through her time at FM, Lindsay has supported Capital Construction contracts, public relations around CSU construction projects, numerous committees, and currently design and construction procurement.

Fred Haberecht, FM Master Planning & Landscape Architecture

For more than thirty years, Fred Haberecht has engaged in design and management of projects involving multidisciplinary teams of engineers, architects, and landscape architects. At Colorado State University Facilities Management, he manages the exterior design and operational aspects of CSU’s 2,300-acre campus. His strengths include facilitating consensus solutions in a complex institutional environment and leadership in sustainability initiatives. Fred is a LEED Accredited Professional, Registered Landscape Architect in Colorado, and a Board Certified Master Arborist.

David Hansen, FM Master Planning & Landscape Architecture

David Hansen has been working in the field of Landscape Architecture for twenty-four years and specifically university campuses for the last 17.  Landscape Architecture requires one to wear many hats and have the ability to blend systems of environmental sciences, civil engineering, and design into a sustainable outcome.  These outcomes can be found throughout CSU’s campuses with the intent of creating memorable spaces that the community can positively engage with.  Another significant strength of David’s lies in physical planning as it relates to multi-modal transportation on a campus that is busting at the seams with bicycles.  As an avid cyclist, he appreciates the need to implement safe infrastructure for modes other than cars to navigate the campus and the greater community.  David is a Registered Landscape Architect in Colorado, a LEED Accredited Professional, and has received certification from DBIA.

Kristi Buffington, FM Space & Mapping

Kristi has been with Facilities Management’s Data and Mapping section for 25 years.  She has a B.S. in Forest Management from Iowa State University and a M.S. in Remote Sensing and GIS from Colorado State University.

While at FM she created the GIS Lands Database, converted the utility and base CAD maps to GIS, moved the University Space Database from Oracle to Access to Famis and finally to AiM.  Kristi managed the mapping section that includes a GIS specialist, CAD/GPS utilities surveyor, an as-built archivist, and an interior designer.  She is currently responsible for the space data and space allocations.

Sandy Sheahan, FM Operations

Sandy Sheahan is the Associate Director of Operations overseeing all aspects of FM Operations and Maintenance including Building Services, Customer Services/Work Control, Logistics, Outdoor Services, Trades Maintenance, and Utilities.  Sandy has over 30 years of experience in operations and brings a wide-range of knowledge.  She completed the APPA Leadership Institute and looks forward to sharing her operational knowledge throughout the FM Leadership Academy.

Trent Wolf, FM Operations

Trent Wolf is an experienced maintenance, construction and service professional with 34 years in construction and building trades. He served in a 4-year apprenticeship program and upon completion worked in the sheet metal / HVACR industry as a journeyman, foreman, and superintendent for 11 years.  Noteworthy projects include, Denver International Airport, Warren Air Force Base, Fort Carson Space Command Center, and the Air Force Academy, Federal Center in Lakewood Colorado, and almost every major hospital in the metro area.  Trent started his own HVACR business providing maintenance and service on numerous commercial properties across the Denver metro area. In 2012, he transitioned into higher education taking a position at the Colorado School of Mines as the HVAC Supervisor where he established a preventive maintenance program that streamlined and documented processes, and ultimately improve system reliability. He also served as a Project Coordinator and Commissioning Agent at Mines for new construction projects and remodels / expansions.  As well, he supervised the Fire Safety and Building Audit teams. In June of 2021, Trent transitioned into the role of Trades Manager at Colorado State University.

Gwen Cooper, FM Operations

Gwen Cooper has worked at CSU for five years both as a Buyer and now the Manager for the Facilities Warehouse Team. Past experience includes: Outside/Inside Sales, Industrial Gearing, and Motor Sales for ten years; Air Cargo Logistics Domestic and International for sixteen years.

Gene Ellis, FM Operations

Gene Ellis is a graduate of CSU with a mechanical engineering degree, and holds a professional engineering license, is a certified water operator, and has twenty-three years of experience in institutional infrastructure.  Gene started his career at the Heating Plant as a meter technician.  He has served as Utility Services Manager for twelve years.

Ken Vergo, FM Operations

Ken Vergo has been working for CSU for 23 years. He served 6 years in Navy as a Machinist Mate working on steam equipment on two aircraft carriers and a submarine tender. After getting out of the Navy, he joined Facilities Management as one of the central plant’s boiler and chiller operator. In 2008, he became the plant supervisor. Ken is married with twin daughters heading into high school and a step-daughter that graduated from CSU this year.

Rodney Gillespie, FM Operations

Rodney Gillespie has over 20 years of experience within Outdoor Services. He began his career at CSU as a temporary hourly employee on the Sports Turf crew and quickly transitioned into the state classified system when a position opened.  He has progressively taken on more responsibilities and was promoted to supervisor of the Grounds Maintenance Zone crews in 2007. In 2016, Rodney became manager of Outdoor Services where he oversees both Grounds and General Services/Heavy Equipment.  Over the course of his career, Rodney has been a part of budget reductions and difficult times. Yet he has seen many program improvements and successes as the campus has grown into the thriving community it is today.

Jamie Cardenas, FM Operations

Jamie Cardenas, Building Services Manager for Facilities Management, is in her fourth year with Colorado State University. In her time she has gained a wealth of knowledge relating to operating and managing the Custodial, Integrated Solid Waste, and Composting programs here on campus.

Sheela Backen, FM Operations

Sheela Backen, Integrated Solid Waste Program Manager, has been at Colorado State University for 26 years. When she started in the waste management program, we were recycling 20% of our waste stream. We are currently recycling 75% to 85% of our waste stream. She has gained a unique insight into waste diversion methods and have made changes in the program to increase participation and increase the diversion rate.

Dan Kozlowski, FM Remodel & Construction Services

Dan Kozlowski is the Assistant Director for Remodel and Construction Services. As Manager of RCS, Dan oversees a variety of major/minor renovation work ranging from carpet/paint projects to full scale renovations and construction projects. Dan started working with CSU while completing his Bachelor’s Degree as a student technician for Telecommunications.  After years of working with a general contractor on custom and log homes, then owning a painting/renovation company, Dan joined the FM team in 2008.  Dan has worked as a Structural Trades II & III, and a Project Manager prior to becoming Manager of Remodel and Construction Services in 2018. 

Nestor Flores, FM Computer Services

I started in CSU Facilities Management in June 2020, has been a great experience working on FM IT platform. It is amazing all the products we have, and support this environment is something that I enjoy. In my native country Venezuela, I worked for more than 20 years for the main ISP, with multiple services that include support on Software and Hardware. I have 3 years career as an IT Technician, and later I complete my 5-year degree in Venezuela as a Computer Engineer. Baseball and Technology are my passion. I'm trying to visit all the MLB baseball parks. At home I have a lab, where I test new technologies.

Ben Burkley, FM Computer Services

I've been in the IT industry since 2006 and have worked for FM since 2013, I specialize in web and database programming.  My preferred role is to work exclusively on back-end systems and servers including server-to-server integrations field device integrations and web development to accommodate those tasks as well as others.

Shelby White, FM Computer Services

I am a Business Systems Administrator and I have been with Facilities Management for about 3 years. I have been working in higher ed for 5+ years and have an Assoicates degree in Computer Information Systems and a degree in Business Administration. I help to maintain the IWMS system (AiM), support the use of the GO apps, and develop new workflows within the RamWorks system.

Kenda Weigang, Environmental Health Services

Kenda Weigang has over 35 years of experience in the areas of Workers’ Compensation and work-related injuries. She has a master's degree in Vocational Rehabilitation from the University of Northern Colorado. Her work history includes starting the Return to Work Program for Pinnacol Assurance; being a Practice Administrator for a Physical Therapy Group; Owner of Associated Counseling Team (ACT), which provided vocational services and expert testimony for all areas of injury claims from social security, liability, auto and workers’ compensation.   

Kenda came to CSU in 2001 as a consultant contracted to help set up CSU’s Return to Work Program, Fit For Duty/pre employment testing, and to establish an ergonomics program. Kenda was hired as the Workers’ Compensation Program Manager in 2011.