Jacque Petterson has been actively working
since 2001 on the very serious problem of drifting tobacco smoke
in apartments and condos. Her work has been in research and education, two
years of which were with the Smokefree Apartment House Registry in Los
Angeles, California, working under a grant through the California
Department of Health Services.
Mrs. Petterson managed apartment properties
from 35 units to just under 600 units in New Orleans, Brownsville and San
Antonio, Texas. in the 1970s and 1980s. By the mid 1980s she had
received the CAM I & II (Certified Apartment Manager) designation from the
National Apartment Association.
In 2000, she and her husband sold a single
family home and purchased a condominium in Canyon Country, California.
After remodeling and moving in she found tobacco smoke drifting into their
home from their neighbor's below. An asthmatic she lived with chronic
asthma attacks daily, incurring further permanent lung damage. They were
forced to move back to a single family home.
This led to a search of options available to
those with health problems living in multi-unit housing. Even after the move she continued to seek out those
involved in the research and education on this problem.
After speaking at length to the tobacco
consultant for the California Department of Health Services, Dr. Joanne
Wellman-Benson, she was invited to the first conference on secondhand
smoke issues in San Diego, CA for May 31, World No Tobacco Day, 2001.
Eventually she began working with the
Smokefree Apartment House Registry in Los Angeles, under a grant through
the California Department of Health Services. From 2001 to 2003, she not
only immersed herself in research and education, but answered continuous
calls, referred by health departments around Southern California, from
residents who were extremely ill due to tobacco smoke from neighboring
She spoke on the subject to members of the Apartment Association of
Greater Los Angeles, taught classes to apartment manager trainees at a
trade school in Long Beach, CA, gave educational talks at condo
association meetings, and spoke in a seminar at a state-wide Project
Director's Meeting for the California Department of Health Services,
Tobacco Control Section.
A great part of her research has been in
the area of the law. Her husband is an attorney and former federal judge
(U.S. Magistrate), and provides additional insight when needed. She has
met with and educated elected officials from city councils to U.S.
Legal and health research became more and more
important to her as she tried to discuss the need for change to
owners and condo associations.
After moving to back to her home town of
San Antonio, Texas with her husband in 2004, she expanded her reach to the
world through this web site. She continues to provide seminars around the
country, assist managers and apartment owners with transition to
smoke-free properties, and to help those with health concerns from the
It is exciting to bring this health education
information to states where funding is not available. But, because we are
not under funding from government or other grantors we are a paid service.
As we wish all multi-family properties to make smoke-free housing an
option for those who want or need clean safe air in their homes, our
pricing will be reasonable and affordable.