Lisa T. Meeks – Chief Executive Officer

Lisa Meeks began her work in real estate with the house next door to the one she lives in. With a contractor partner, she moonlighted from her job as a civil rights lawyer and restored a declining old Northside property into a modernized home with original character intact. One home led to another. Through this new line of work Lisa was able to manifest personal convictions, such as building community through restoration of the places we live; and nurturing careers by investing in the training and personal development of employees. Lisa has instilled Rock Island with an ethos of give-back, so she, and the company, support several non-profits focused on equitable initiatives.

Jim Whittenburg – Chief Financial Officer

As Rock Island grew, it needed someone with a head for figues. Enter Jim. He brings over a decade of financial expertise in the real estate investing industry. His knack for numbers allows Rock Island to operate efficiently, and to pass on savings to its clients. Jim’s job also involves a lot of analysis, and that’s his favorite part. When he is not running the balance sheets he’s…just running. He has completed 15 (count ’em!) full marathons, and many more half-marathons, running with a team in training to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. His favorite places to train are Ault Park and Eden Park. 

Gale Horton – Office Manager

Hailing from the Pacific Northwest, Gale moved to Cincinnati in 2015. Drawn to Rock Island’s focus on restoring houses rather than tearing them down to rebuild, she joined the company in 2016 and makes sure the trains run on time. She ensures that all the company’s apartments are rented up and well maintained. Rock Island without Gale’s administrative prowess would be like Seattle without rain–we just couldn’t imagine it! Architecture and design are passions for Gale, who is still discovering charming nooks of the city (a recent fave: Sayler Park). She lives with her two children, who are in college, plus four cats and a dog.

Craig Soper – Project Manager

A Northside resident for more than a decade, Craig Soper has witnessed—and helped–his neighborhood emerge from blight to beauty. He has been a carpenter since high school, and spent the early part of his career building custom homes in West Chester and Indian Hill. He and Rock Island CEO Lisa Meeks bonded over a belief that just about any building with good bones can be salvaged, no matter how sad it looks superficially. He and his team initially rehabbed Rock Island properties—many of which were more than 100 years old—one by one. The company grew to the point of undertaking several rehabs at a time, and Craig grew with it. He organizes the teams of workers and ensures that Rock Island standards are met. When he is not on a job site he can be found chasing his two young children around the house or enjoying the great outdoors surrounding a cabin (that he built, of course) on his property in Kentucky.

Fritz Rosselot – Assistant Project Manager

From demolition to landscaping to painting, Fritz has done it all for many of Rock Island’s top-to-bottom house rehabs. Constructing homes is in her blood; she grew up in a family that owned a building supply store, and has also helped out with her brother’s home-building company. In her four years at Rock Island, Fritz has proved herself to be so indispensible that now she helps manage all of the rehab projects. Her talent for motivating team stems in part from her years in sports medicine—she holds a master’s degree in the field, and has taught and trained in colleges and high schools. When she climbs down the ladder at the end of the day, she heads back home to Brown County, where she and her partner dote on their two mix-breed dogs.

Sandy Reed – Director of Leasing and Property Management

When Rock Island Realty bought the apartment building where Sandy Reed was a resident, it unwittingly got a future employee in the deal. Sandy had been the building manager of the place, and had also worked, for almost two decades, at an organization that provides affordable housing for people with HIV. When Rock Island grew to the point of needing a dedicated leasing agent, Sandy was the obvious choice. She processes applications for apartment rentals, screens applicants, and generally smoothes the way for a new tenant to move into one of our apartments. Now that Sandy’s only child is grown up (and working as a nurse practitioner in New Orleans), she devotes her free time to volunteering (most recently, by shuttling seniors in her neighborhood to agencies to apply for help with energy bills). This family tradition was passed down to Sandy by her 93-year-old mother—who is herself still volunteering!

Bill Wright – Service Technician

Keeping everything working in Rock Island Realty’s 150+ apartment units, Bill shuttles from property to property, dispatching his crew members when service calls come in. He has a passion for finish carpentry, but is also knowledgeable in everything from furnace repair to plumbing to drywalling. The special sauce with Bill is his organization. He credits his military background for his rock-solid sense of prioritization and thoroughness. When he’s not bouncing from apartment to apartment, he likes to spend time woodworking, and dreams one day of making his own pole barn.

Karl Iski – Service Technician

He has been a cook, a printer, and a full-time dad, but Karl Iski found his true calling when he worked on the second property that Rock Island Realty rehabbed more than a decade ago. He showed his versatility by hanging drywall, plumbing, tiling and landscaping—among other duties—on many other early projects. These days he helps put the finishing touches on properties, such as mounting cabinets and installing new washer/dryers. In his spare time the Philadelphia native likes to ride scooters and spoil his cat.