Northern Heights resident Carol Gehlner is another Orcasonian with an amazing backstory revealing her versatile energy – a career ranging from teaching and coordinating education on military bases, to work for a UN affiliate, management of a chain of gift stores, radiology sales, condominium management and general contracting. “Plus, crewing and scheduling for a commercial yacht. I have had 55 years to do all of this and might be leaving something out,” Carol adds.
She says the contractor for the Northern Heights renovation, Dennison Construction, was wonderful, tidy, and efficient every day, and went beyond to help her move back into her renovated apartment.
They completed her new kitchen around the microwave oven which she had previously installed. And then there’s her walk-in shower! New flooring and bright new exterior paint.
Living on Orcas, Carol says, “you just kind of have to accept what you get.”
She was looking for other housing before the OPAL project, with no affordable options to be found online. But with Northern Heights’ purchase, OPAL did an excellent job of “keeping the spirit alive” throughout renovation of the 12 apartments. Tenants stayed in already-completed units while their apartments were rejuvenated. Now these homes are upgraded for sustainability, with such things as heat pumps, new windows and added insulation throughout. And hers is permanently affordable for her, enabling her to stay on Orcas.
Working with OPAL, you get the feeling that people really care about you.” – Carol Gehlner
Working with Carol and her neighbors, OPAL gets reminded daily about the difference we can make for our Orcas community.