Degree Name

MA in Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

First Advisor

Charlie Curry-Smithson

Second Advisor

Marla Solomon


Between early 2010 and May 2011 the Windham Housing Trust conducted a feasibility analysis to study the possibility of merging with or acquiring the Rockingham Area Community Land Trust, a similar community land trust organization providing affordable housing in an adjacent county.

This study analyzed the one year feasibility study and merger negotiation process between the two organizations, and explored the complex set of relationships between financial partners, communities, residents, and funding stakeholders. The methodology for this work included reviewing current literature about nonprofit mergers and acquisitions, funder involvement, and community impact of consolidating services. In addition the author interviewed five key stakeholders in this merger, reviewed internal and financial documents, and drew on participant observation as a manager with the Windham & Windsor Housing Trust.

The study reveals that more can be learned about the future of the community land trust model of affordable housing in Vermont than the just the technical aspects of the merger. The merger highlights many of the challenges of long term stewardship of an expanding portfolio of affordable housing around the state and extracts key lessons-learned from the merger which may be useful to any small, rural nonprofit interested in merging, but is most likely to be valuable to funding and advocacy organizations who are seeking to maintain networks of providers in their service area in the face of increasing community need.


Historic Preservation and Conservation | Human Resources Management | Nonprofit Administration and Management | Organizational Behavior and Theory | Organization Development | Real Estate | Strategic Management Policy | Urban, Community and Regional Planning


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