Our Members

Judy Profile Pic

Judy Broward

Judy became interested in Cohousing because of the opportunity to create a unique community in Gainesville that incorporates green living and a sense of community. She is a retired accountant at the University of Florida. She worked as Budget Coordinator at her last position at the College of Veterinary Medicine. Her major hobbies include backyard bird watching, gardening, reading and learning to play the ukulele. She likes to travel with her husband Chuck in their Prius and motorcycle camper.

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Malcolm T. Sanford

Malcolm T. Sanford is passionate about honey bees and acting. He is a retired beekeeping extension specialist from the University of Florida. He also has acted on most of the stages around Gainesville. He is still active in the beekeeping community, writes a monthly column called the Apis newsletter and is currently Executive Secretary of the Florida State Beekeepers Association. Presently, he is playing Senior Slo-pitch softball as part of a new local startup team. He is also interested in sustainability issues, a good reason to be part of a cohousing community, which seeks to reduce both its land occupying and carbon footprint, and is an investor in Gainesville’s solar Feed in Tariff Program. Locally, he is a member and official secretary of the Gainesville Kiwanis Club of the University City.

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Burt Kempner

Writer-Producer Burt Kempner has worked professionally in New York, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C. and Florida. His work has won numerous major awards and has been seen by groups ranging in size from a national television audience in the United States to a half-dozen Maori chieftains in New Zealand. Among his broadcast credits are programs on PBS, Discovery, History Channel, CNBC and European and Asian television. He has also worked with many leading national non-profit organizations, including the Jane Goodall Institute, the American Institute of Architects, the Sierra Club and Habitat for Humanity. Burt is a passionate believer in creating works of honesty, integrity and value to the viewing public. He also thinks that cohousing is a concept that is just starting to get the nationwide attention it deserves.

Gale Kempner

Gale and her husband Burt have long been interested in the idea of cohousing but have never been able to find it in any of the previous communities they have lived. Gale’s family has dwindled to just one brother who lives up north and his grown kids as well as her own 21 year old son. As a consequence, she wants a substitute sense of community which she feels is lacking in American life.

Gale is a psychiatrist and is still active in her career although she only works part time now. She is also a Master Gardener, an avid reader and a good cook. She loves getting together for good conversations and would love to set up a book club and a good bridge game. She grew up in PA but has been moving steadily south, arriving in FL in 1985.

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Brooks and Jeanine Nelson

One of the original founding families of Gainesville Cohousing, Brooks and Jeanine have been together for 8 years, but will be celebrating their first married anniversary this March. Brooks is originally from Wisconsin and moved to the Tampa Bay area with his family when he was 12. Jeanine is originally from Los Angeles, CA and also moved to the Tampa Bay area with her family when she was 12. However, they met and fell in love in Gainesville, FL., where they were married, and are planning to start a family.

Jeanine works as a mental health counselor providing services to active-duty members of the military and their families at military installations around the world. While Jeanine is on assignment, Brooks keeps the home fires burning by working as a chemist at the University of Florida, College of Medicine and enjoys being politically-active by working on campaigns and petition drives. Brooks and Jeanine share many hobbies together and also share in the view of community living. They are both extremely excited about this project and Brooks calls it his “passion” and “life-long dream” as he has been interested and researching cohousing since he was in college. Today, Brooks serves as Gainesville Cohousing’s meeting facilitator and the contact person for the community.

Andy Profile Pic

Andrew Kaplan

With 38 years of professional experience, Andrew is the architect for Gainesville Cohousing. He and his wife Cheryl are also members of the group. Andrew has designed nearly two thousand homes, apartments and condominium units in the Gainesville area along with many commercial projects. His work ranges from houses for Habitat for Humanity to a recent $1.5 million residence. Andrew and Cheryl have lived in Gainesville for 42 years and have two grown children. They are active members of the Gainesville community.

Cheryl Profile Pic

Cheryl Kaplan

Cheryl works alongside Andrew, managing his office, when she is not involved with B’nai Israel Jewish Center and other community endeavors – especially those involving youth. Cheryl enjoys doing stained glass mosaics and she loves to cook. She is excited for the opportunity to prepare community meals in our Common House and live in a community “where everyone knows your name.”


Robert Christianson

Robert has been interested in cohousing since the 70’s. He jumped at the chance to be part of this community and extended family. Gainesville Cohousing provides  an outlet for so many interests and lifestyle goals he has, and matches his intentions to live among positive, socially and environmentally active neighbors. Robert’s hobbies include travel, backpacking, jogging, cycling and music. Sometimes he just likes to lie in the hammock.


Diane Craig

Diane has lived in Gainesville off and on since 1979 and has two grown children.  She is passionate about data and is a research analyst at UF and the Center for Measuring University Performance at Arizona State and UMass Amherst.  Prior to UF she worked as a private investigator in South Florida and as a political consultant in DC.  She is very excited about the prospect of living in a small “green” home, close to campus and shopping, with engaging and interesting neighbors.  Diane enjoys the outdoors, museums, history and politics, exercising, and her new toy poodle Dewey.  She has traveled many parts of the world and plans to have more adventures in the years to come, especially her #1 bucket list item – an African safari.


Mary Logan

Mary grew up in Wisconsin, but then moved to Baltimore with her husband, where they spent their first three years in an urban commune. She was a librarian with the public library system for over 30 years, though she took a few years off right after their son was born. She retired in 2011. After she was widowed in 2014, she moved to Florida to be nearer her son and his wife, and to her sister-in-law, Nancy and Nancy’s husband, Jim, who were already members of Gainesville Cohousing.

Mary enjoys reading, walking, gardening and traveling. She loves being part of a community that shares values of sustainability, diversity and open-mindedness.


Bob Kolb

Bob Kolb has lived in the woods outside of Gainesville for 30 years, and is excited to finally be in the heart of things. One thing he loves most about the Gainesville community is the diverse range of opportunities and interests it has to offer while still retaining  the intimacy of a small community . He practices yoga and meditates daily, and you can often find him taking nature walks, going on bike rides, or visiting the farmer’s market.


Jim Devereux and Nancy Detweiler

Jim Devereux and Nancy Detweiler look forward to moving into the Gainesville Cohousing to be part of a small, energy efficient, diverse community with communal gardens and the sound of children. The convenience of being able to walk to books, bagels, bistros, and buses is an added benefit. Jim and Nancy both worked and studied in Chicago in the early 70”s but met in Gainesville twenty five years later. Jim’s interests include fossils, and gemology. Nancy has a hobby of retiring (three times) and returning to her career as a social worker. She is currently an instructor in the Saint Leo University MSW program.