Next Step Housing (NSH) has provided quality, clean and sober, supportive housing to residents of Yakima since 1991. NSH pioneered the development of Alcohol and Drug Free Communities (ADFC’s) in Washington and currently owns and operates the only clean and sober permanent housing for large families with children in the State. Our community-based Board of Directors and Staff have many years of experience in service provision for special needs populations and expertise in financial management as well as in developing and managing affordable housing.
Combined, the Board and Staff have a collective:
In 2016, 51% of the organization’s residents were extremely low-income earning less than 30% of the Yakima Area Median Income (AMI). Another 14% were below 40% of the AMI, and another 28% were below 50%. A total of 93% of our residents were at or below 50% of the AMI when they first moved in.
Since July 1999
SOLA Manager (Retired)
Since November 2012
WA State Dept. of Health
Disease Intervention Specialist
Since November 2012
Gesa Credit Union
Chief Executive Officer
Since July 1999
Triumph Treatment Services
Since May 2005
Yakima 12 Step Programs
Since January 2008
Housing Development Manager (Retired)
Since April 2009
Resident Manager (Retired)
Since April 2009
Pear Tree Place
John Mifsud (since June 1995)
Mr. Mifsud is celebrating 22 years as Executive Director of NSH. He has over 40 years of program design, implementation and management experience as well as 35 years of experience in property management and development in the private, non-profit and public sectors. A long-term housing advocate for people with special needs, Mr. Mifsud developed the first affordable, independent clean and sober housing units for families with children in the State of Washington. Mr. Mifsud has managed portfolios of 800+ units in four states including commercial properties and tax credit developments. A Certified Families for Self-Sufficiency Specialist, Mr. Mifsud also designed and supervised on-site case management services for a diversity of special needs populations in Washington. Currently, Mr. Mifsud manages all staff as well as finances, fundraising, land acquisition, new developments and major capital improvements for NSH.
Diana McClaskey (since March 2002)
Pear Tree Place
509.249.0390 (office) 509.469.0203 (fax)
Ms. McClaskey reached sobriety in October 2001 and moved into an NSH property in November of that year. She became the House Manager in March of 2002. She has dedicated herself to NSH and has managed every property in our portfolio. Diana is also the Resident Manager and Case Management Supervisor for Pear Tree Place I, II & III. Ms. McClaskey supervises a staff of six employees for NSH and has full responsibility for all leasing, rent collection, compliance, income certifications and resident files. As Deputy Director, she supervises all on-site management and maintenance staff.
Connie Cleary (since January 2005)
509.457.8771 (office) 509.457.0173 (fax)
Ms. Cleary achieved sobriety in 2003 and began working for NSH as a Housekeeper. She was promoted to Resident Manager in 2006. Ms. Cleary is a veteran with certified training in customer service. Connie became the NSH Asset Manager in 2007. Ms. Cleary has managed two comprehensive capital renovations at both the Clean House and the Lamplighter Apartments. She managed all on-site maintenance staff as well as subcontractors and inspections. She is currently the Resident Manager of the Sommerset Apartments as also acts as the On-Site Case Manager for 11 homeless/disabled units. She has dedicated her life to NSH and the people who benefit from the agency's supportive housing.
Mike Ryckman (since March 2003)
Mr. Ryckman reached sobriety in 2001 and moved into NSH housing in December of 2002. Mr. Ryckman became the NSH Maintenance Assistant in 2003. In June of 2007, Mr. Ryckman was promoted to Maintenance Superintendent. He has dedicated his life to NSH and manages all maintenance staff and major remodels with full responsibility for all maintenance requests, upgrades, curb appeal, grounds, subcontractors, unit turnovers and punch lists for new construction. Mr. Ryckman also manages inspections and maintenance compliance for all NSH investors including all federal, City, County and State funders.
Keith Erickson (since January 2010)
Mr. Erickson shares the title of NSH Maintenance Superintendent with Mike Ryckman. Keith became sober in 2007 and has been working with NSH since 2010. He is active in the Yakima Narcotics Anonymous community. Keith says, “Working with people in recovery is really a dream come true for me. I love that I am on staff at Next Step. Being of service to my community helps keeps me clean and sober.”
Rigoberto Dominguez (since April 2013)
Mr. Dominguez originally came to NSH as a resident in 2010. In 2012, he began working for NSH as a People 4 People intern through their Parents Work First Program. He was hired as a Case Manager to work with homeless veterans at Pear Tree Place III in 2013. He received his Associates of Applied Science in Chemical Dependency Counseling from Yakima Valley Community College in 2012 and completed his Bachelor of Science in Religion in 2012. Mr. Dominguez is bilingual and bicultural and also works for Yakima Memorial Hospital as a Chaplin focused on hospice and end of life care services. He sits on the hospital’s Ethics Committee and Critical Incidents Team and is currently on the Board of Directors for Triumph Treatment Services.
Kristin Thierolf (since November 2017)
Lamplighter Apartments Resident Manager
Clean House Apartments Manager
509.248-0633 (office) 509.577.7434 (fax)
Ms. Thierolf is the Resident Manager at the Lamplighter Apartments and also manages Clean House Apartments. She achieved sobriety in April of 2012 and is an active member of the Yakima 12 Step Program. She is a Chemical Dependency Professional Trainee (CDPT) certified through the Washington State Department of Health in Olympia. She is also currently enrolled at Yakima Valley Community College in their Chemical Dependency Counseling/Case Management Program and hopes to graduate with an Associate of Arts degree in 2018. She previously worked for Triumph Treatment Services as a Recovery Support Specialist and later as a CDPT before joining the staff at Next Step Housing.
Alegria & Company, PS, is a certified public accounting firm licensed in the State of Washington with offices in Yakima and Prosser. Alegria has been serving nonprofit organizations for nearly 70 years and manages NSH’s financial reporting and accounting including accounts payable, accounts receivable and payroll. Additionally, Alegria manages annual audit preparation and tax returns. Brian Newhouse, CPA is the partner in charge of all services provided for NSH.
Total People Housed
Average Stay in Years*
Below 30% AMI
Below 40% AMI
Below 50% AMI
Below 80% AMI
Above 80% AMI
Left due to relapse
Found permanent housing
18 years old and under
19 to 35 years old
36 to 50 years old
Over 51 years old
Native or Alaskan Native
Recovering from Drug Addiction
Recovering from Alcohol Addiction
Chronically Mentally Ill
Updated June 2017
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