About Montpelier Alive

Our Mission

Montpelier Alive celebrates the City of Montpelier. We work with partners to sustain and build upon Montpelier’s vibrant downtown community by offering and supporting special events and activities and by promoting City businesses. We work to ensure a thriving local economy for Montpelier and to preserve the City’s historic character and unique sense of place.

Our Vision

Montpelier serves as the economic, social, and cultural center for central Vermont, with a thriving downtown and a unique sense of place.

We hope to see you in Montpelier soon!


Executive Director, Katie Trautz

Born and raised in Cabot, Vermont, Katie is a musician, mother, community leader and arts advocate. Katie is the co-founder of the non-profit folk music school Summit School of Traditional Music and Culture based in Montpelier, VT.  Following her 8-year directorship at the Summit School, she became the Executive Director of Chandler Center for the Arts in Randolph, VT.  She joined Montpelier Alive in 2021 as the Event and Communications Coordinator, and soon thereafter became the Executive Director, bringing vibrant programming to the Capital City. Katie's vision is to grow the organization to meet the community need, while continuing to uplift and celebrate Montpelier's unique charm.


Events and Marketing Coordinator, Carolyn Grodinsky


Development Manager, Leslie Kantlehner

Lesley Kantlehner moved to Montpelier in 2021 to get more time with her family in the mountains. She fell in love with Montpelier immediately thanks to the many festivals, amazing businesses and restaurants, and welcoming community. She's proud to work with Montpelier Alive to spread the joy for her new hometown with others.


Communications and Marketing Manager, Sheena Khan

Sheena Khan is a multi-cultural marketing professional with an entreprenuerial spirit. She comes from
a background in arts management with a focus on non-profits and community-building. Sheena has
collaborated extensively with teams across the United States and abroad throughout her professional

Sheena is an arts advocate and nature-lover who believes in the power of community and connection.
She is passionate about cultural exchange, diversity and inclusion, and expanding the reach and impact
of small businesses - considering them to be the backbone of a strong community.


Board of Directors


  • Scott Van Beck, Chair; Co-Founder of The Education Game 

  • Megan McConnville, Vice-Chair; Founder and Consultant at Park Street Community Solutions and Senior Planner at EPR, PC, Montpelier Community Member 

  • Joel Dennison, Treasurer; Digital Product Manager at National Life Group 

  • Ray Mikus, Secretary; Owner at Green Light Real Estate 


  • Ras Moshe Burnett; Musician

  • Shannon Bates; Chef and Owner at Enna International Deli

  • Marc Gwinn; Financial Advisor at Edward Jones

  • Jordan Mensah; Director, Shidaa Projects and Accountant

  • Pelin Kohn; Montpelier City Council Member - ad-hoc, non-voting Board Member


  • Design Committee: The Design Committee focuses on improving the physical aspects of Montpelier's Downtown (streetscape, lighting, facades, circulation, etc.) and developing strategies to ensure an attractive appearance, highlighting the city's unique assets and heritage.

  • Montpelier Business Association: The Montpelier Business Association (MBA) is a committee of Montpelier Alive that acts as a support network and united voice for small downtown businesses. The group meets regularly to coordinate promotions, networking, and events, and discuss important topics that collectively impact downtown small businesses. Through the MBA and our work with the Montpelier Development Corporation, we strive to ensure a thriving downtown business environment.

  • Finance Committee: The Finance Committee oversees the financial health of the organization, works with Staff to prepare the annual budget,  oversees any investment funds, reviews financial policies, and ensures that the organization is properly insured.

  • Membership and Development Committee: Montpelier Alive’s Development and Membership Committee works to ensure the financial sustainability of the organization, focusing on corporate, individual, and foundation giving, including growing the business membership. The committee also solicits feedback from the business membership and works with staff to enhance the benefits and programs that serve members. 

  • Board Development Committee: The Board Development Committee leads the Board in regularly reviewing and updating the Board’s statement of its roles and areas of responsibility, and what is expected of individual Board members, provides trainings to the Board, and is responsible for recruitment of new board members. 

Montpelier Alive accomplishes its mission through a Board of Directors, Executive Director, Committees, and the help of many volunteers! If you are interested in getting involved as a volunteer or committee member, please contact our offices at 802-223-9604.

Designated Downtown

Shortly after Montpelier Alive was formed in 1999, we received State of Vermont recognition as a Designated Downtown. Through this program, downtown property owners and renters are eligible for tax credits. The downtown can also create its own signage, apply for special transportation funds, and take advantage of special state programs designed for downtowns.

  1. Agendas and Minutes

    Link to page
  2. Join Our Board

    We are seeking new voices that represent the amazing diversity of the Montpelier community. If you are interested in helping create a more vibrant Montpelier, please consider joining our Board of Directors!

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