Jim Chaffin and Jim Light honed their skills over a ten year period as senior managers of Sea Pines Plantation on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. During this time, they were also responsible for helping to develop eight other master planned communities in the southeastern United States and Puerto Rico. In 1978 they formed Chaffin Light Associates (CLA) and have since focused their careers almost entirely on the development and operation of high-quality recreation and resort communities. CLA’s primary focus is the development of sustainable communities that provide social environments reflective of the culture of the surrounding area.
Chaffin and Light moved to Snowmass Village, Colorado in 1978 and helped Snowmass Village blossom from a burgeoning ski area into a resort community by developing the Snowmass Club and West Village areas. CLA also provided the land and resources to support the Snowmass Chapel and Community Center, the Snowmass Conference Center, and the world-renowned Anderson Ranch Arts Center.
In the mid 1980’s, CLA became involved in Semiahmoo, Washington, Callawassie Island, SC, and ultimately Spring Island, SC. It was at Spring Island that Chaffin and Light pioneered a conservation based ethic, where sustainable development practices became a core focus of the community. It was where CLA first tested the notion of building a “community within a park, not a park within a community.” The Spring Island Trust has since served as the steward for protected lands, as an educator for community residents, and as a watchdog to ensure environmental integrity.
Since the mid 1990s, CLA has developed the following communities:
These communities provide a connectivity to nature, amenities that put people in touch with the outdoors, and programs that reflect the culture of the surrounding region.
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