“Keystone Spotlight” is an ongoing series introducing our top performing staff who continue to go out of their way to provide exceptional service.
Creative problem solving is Lindsey Latham’s specialty. As a community manager in the Ontario office of Keystone Pacific, Lindsey oversees The Orchards, the picturesque 209-unit condo built by William Lyon Homes in scenic Upland. One of the signature features of this family-friendly residential area is the approximately 100 citrus trees that line the streets and bear fruit seasonally.
For Lindsey, providing HOA management services to The Orchards is like helping to run a small city. “The developers did a smart job designing a thriving urban community, with thoughtful amenities that reflect the needs of a family-focused community, such as a tot lot, pool, rec room, and property-wide dog stations.”
During one of her first walk-throughs with the landscaping supervisor, Lindsey noticed that a tangerine had been plucked from one of the trees and a bit of a rind was still attached to the stem, indicating that it wasn’t yet ripe. It got her thinking…
“I asked the landscaping supervisor how the community had been handling the fruit produced by these citrus trees,” Lindsey explains. “He told me that there was not yet a specific plan in place for it.”
Lindsey was immediately reminded of a personal project that is close to her heart. As an avid gardener, she participates in a local gardening group where friends get together to share the fruits of their labor–literally. “We all have extra fruits and veggies from our gardens,” she says. “Personally, I had just been giving mine to friends and family–anyone who would take it. But we decided to hold regular get-togethers and lay our produce out on the table, sort of like a free mini farmers market between friends.”
Lindsey realized that The Orchards was the perfect place to apply a similar idea. Maybe she could set up a free fruit basket in the community’s common area, so residents could partake in the bountiful yield from their land…
Landscape supervisor Lorenzo Lopez from Mission Landscape offered to harvest the fruit for the community. His teams were already trimming the trees and kept a close eye on fruiting cycles anyway. With approval from the community’s board, Lindsey purchased two large baskets and printed an eye-catching sign that invited community residents to help themselves to the oranges, tangerines, and lemons that are available throughout the year. And so, Citrus Share at The Orchards was born. “I was thrilled,” Lindsey continues. “The fact that the board was as enthusiastic about it as I was, showed me that their focus was on delivering amenities that make people’s lives better.”
Citrus Share was an instant success. Lindsey helped get the word out through the community’s newsletter and other announcements. Soon, neighbors from all corners of The Orchards were stopping by the rec room to pick up a few oranges or take home a couple of lemons.
“As a bit of a ‘type A’ personality, I love solving problems,” Lindsey concludes. “Since I also live in a community association, I’ve seen both sides of HOA management. My job gives me the opportunity to discover more ways to help neighbors become closer. I want residents to truly enjoy where they live. In so many areas today, the sense of community gets lost. I’m happy that I get the chance to brainstorm ways to bring people together, so everyone feels at home in a happier, more connected community.”
Thanks for all your hard work, Lindsey. We hope you’ll reward yourself with a nice tall glass of fresh lemonade.