Your Vision. Our Mission.

LEH Consulting Group


Your Vision. Our Mission.

This is more than a tag line.

We are relentless in our pursuit of your vision to make communities stronger. Our mission is to increase the management and operational capacity of nonprofit organizations, businesses, and educational institutions that lift up underserved communities.

We approach our work with these values in mind:



LEH exists solely and entirely because of valued relationships. We work in service of those relationships – those we hold with our clients and those our clients hold with their customers and communities. Relationships allowed us to build a national client base on repeat business and referrals from existing clients.


We are committed to doing the right thing for our client community. We work by the ethic that once a client, always a client. Before, during, and after we complete a project with a client, the LEH team strives to provide service that is responsive, warm, and effective.


We start our work by defining with clients what success looks like together. Then we check in regularly on how we’re doing to achieve that definition of success together. We are singularly focused on advancing our clients’ vision of success.


We do not assume we have all of the answers. We are facilitators, co-creators, and partners with our clients. We work together to problem solve, experiment, and find solutions. We are obsessed with learning and work to apply our learning from every project to benefit our client community.


Life is too short not to enjoy what you do, and we like playing in the sandbox with people who feel the same. We look for ways to inject laughter and fun into our work lives.


About Us



Leslie Hoffman is the principal and founder of LEH Consulting Group. She began her career as a journalist, covering a wide range of topics as a newspaper and Associated Press reporter. A tour in the Peace Corps in El Salvador planted the seeds of a community development career. Leslie joined the U.S. microfinance sector, serving in various leadership roles overseeing lending, portfolio quality and asset recovery, client service, communications, and strategic partnership development. Her consulting work focuses on capacity building and business strategy for nonprofits, community development financial institutions, community colleges, community-based networks, and small businesses. She is also a professional faculty member at the University of New Mexico’s Anderson School of Management where she has taught courses in entrepreneurship and nonprofit management.

LEH serves a diverse national clientele through a network of consultants and contract professionals who bring their passion, expertise and commitment to the LEH client community. We are grateful to have grown to serve great organizations who are doing good things.

Julie Candelaria 2013
Julie Candelaria is a Denver-based consultant specializing in product management, marketing, program and project management, strategic planning, supply chain and contract management. She brings to LEH a passion for launching new programs and processes from strategy through to execution. Julie’s expertise includes more than 20 years of experience in the telecom/broadband industry supporting commercial customers ranging from small business to enterprise. Julie’s career also includes senior-level experience in community development, having led special projects and geographic market expansion for a leading U.S. microfinance organization and serving as lead consultant on business model analysis in the community college sector.

Barbara Eckblad, founder of The Eckblad Group, is a Midwest-based consultant serving community development financial institutions nationwide. From a clerical role in a bank credit department after college, Barbara went on to become a commercial credit analyst and then entrepreneur, building a commercial and residential real estate firm from start-up to $17 million in annual sales. She transitioned the firm to employee ownership so she could dedicate the second half of her career to community service work. That led her to the U.S. microfinance industry where she led the lending program for a statewide microlending organization in Wisconsin before launching her consulting practice. Barbara’s core expertise is grounded is scaling loan programs, portfolio management and aligning staff, products and systems.  She focuses on earned income strategies and establishing loan operations systems. Special attention is devoted to technical assistance deployment, and building collaborations with local and state governments, banks, small business agencies and funding agencies and individuals.

Born and raised in New Mexico, Ian Esquibel, MBA, facilitates alignment and development for organizations and individuals.  With more than 15 years of experience serving nonprofits, he enjoys working with leaders committed to social justice. Ian listens deeply through his consulting, coaching, facilitation and mediation practices.

Ian’s primary core value is “family happiness.” He indulges in his time with his wife and two children.


LaDonna Hopkins, founder of H&H Consulting, is an Albuquerque-based consultant specializing in executive coaching and consultation in the areas of nonprofit strategic planning, leadership development, board training and fundraising. Her nonprofit career of more than 30 years includes positions as executive director, vice president, chief development officer, and a program director. She guided nationally recognized organizational growth, built and scaled annual giving campaigns and major gifts programs, led community problem-solving and planning efforts, coordinated grant-making activities, managed large volunteer operations, and oversaw organizational administration. In addition, she has an extensive resume of board-level service for social service, community service, educational, arts, and faith-based, nonprofits.

Linh C. Nguyen is a nationally recognized leader in organizational strategy, talent development, and change management. Linh served as Vice President for Learning and Impact, then Chief Operating Officer at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek, Michigan. Prior to joining the foundation, Linh spent more than 25 years in financial and organizational consulting. Linh started his career with Cambridge Associates, where he specialized in investment performance measurement and long-range financial modeling. Shifting his focus from financial to human assets, Linh continued his journey at Accenture (formerly Andersen Consulting) where he specialized in complex business transformation, organizational change talent development and executive and team coaching. Linh also has experience running his own consulting practice and helping other consultancies grow their businesses. Linh now focuses on consulting, executive coaching, and entrepreneurial pursuits, serving clients in the areas of strategic planning, leadership development, organizational change and capacity building.

Zach Grafe is an Albuquerque-based consultant specializing in private equity, financial management, business planning, and data analysis. Zach has consulted with for-profit and nonprofit enterprises across the education, healthcare, financial services, and consumer products industries and works alongside managers to develop and implement financial and operational plans. He excels at building complex financial models; developing data tracking, analysis, and reporting capabilities; analyzing strategic investment and acquisition opportunities; and providing analytical support for external communications including business plans, grant applications, and publications. Zach has served as a contract CFO for multiple corporations and, prior to starting his own consulting firm, spent several years as an analyst in the venture capital industry.

Stacy Zielinski is a Florida-based consultant with more than a decade of experience working with Community Development Financial Institutions. Her experience as a Senior Technical Assistance Provider and Loan Officer in microfinance has helped Stacy develop expertise in business plan development, underwriting, and post-loan business support services. In addition, she brings expertise in loan policy development and integration as well as utilization of the SBA Community Advantage Program. Stacy began her career as an educator before being drawn to economic development through her entrepreneurial passions. Since 2008, Stacy and her husband have owned and operated independent and franchise retail and restaurant entities. They currently own four franchises in the Tampa area.

Natalie Hoffman is an Albuquerque-based professional who provides research and administrative support services. She began her career in healthcare, working as a high-risk labor and delivery nurse at a large urban hospital. Caring for new mothers from underserved communities who lacked access to good pre-natal healthcare prompted a new career path. Natalie has a passion for supporting healthy families and communities. Her community-based work, which focuses on environmental sustainability, commercial organic farming and local food systems, has taken her across the West.


Our Clients


A leading U.S. microlender, a growing company serving critical behavioral healthcare needs, a national trade association, a large community college, a foster-care home – they’re all LEH clients. The LEH team has supported the work of more than 40 organizations across 18 states and the District of Columbia.

Below are a few examples of clients we’re proud to serve:



Working Solutions provides San Francisco Bay Area entrepreneurs with the capital and resources they need to start or grow a successful business. The organization prioritizes low-income businesses and women and minority business owners, and provides every client business with business coaching, mentorship, and resources for the term of the loan (up to five years). LEH helped the organization capitalize on loan portfolio growth, guiding a redesign of the technical assistance approach and enhancing portfolio management practices to position Working Solutions for further growth.

Working Solutions Logo

“I am so happy we chose to work with LEH. The team framed our problem, and then systematically supported us in both understanding and then addressing the issues. Since the project, we’re now more aware of the core goal and issue we’re trying to address. Not only did we implement their recommendations, we found our work with the LEH team helped us improve our decision-making abilities.”

Sara Razavi, COO




Bridges is New Mexico’s largest and oldest company devoted to meeting the needs of individuals with Autism and their families. Bridges gives children with Autism the tools necessary to reach their greatest potential and become as independent as possible so they may be fully contributing and valued members of their families and communities. LEH worked with the organization’s founder and director on a communications project to raise awareness about the organization’s work that yielded accolades from the state’s weekly business publication.

Bridges Logo 2x3 300dpi

“LEH has a unique talent of really learning who the client is, not just what the client does. They take time to make sure they deliver a product that not only represents but promotes the client in the best possible fashion. Their commitment to their work is at a level that is hard to find.”

Stacy Ertle, President




What We Do

Our Approachhwy

Think about why you started – your job, your program, your business, your organization. What motivated you? What frightened you? What did you think success would look like and where are you now? Our goal is to understand not just what you do but who you are as a client. We aren’t looking for work so much as we’re looking for change we want to be a part of in the world.

Our clients tell us there are three things that make the way we work meaningful to them:

  • We operate well in environments where there is ambiguity.
  • We are natural problem solvers who look for patterns and trends in behavior, systems and data.
  • We are relentless about learning, improvement and growth – for our clients and ourselves.



Our Services

Nonprofit Capacity Building

  • Management-level gap staffing coverage
  • Business model analysis and planning
  • Project management
  • Program development and implementation
  • Team management and executive coaching
  • Market analysis and community outreach
  • Fundraising and grant management
  • Board development and training
  • Operations management
  • Financial analysis and management
  • Training and facilitation

Community Development Finance

  • Management-level gap staffing coverage
  • Business model analysis and planning
  • Microloan and small business credit department structuring
  • Microloan, small business and consumer loan collections and portfolio management
  • Microloan and small business underwriting
  • Community development venture capital fund development
  • Sales team development and management
  • Credit education and entrepreneurial training
  • Training and facilitation

Small Business Growth

  • Business model analysis and planning
  • Product development
  • Supply chain and contract management
  • Market analysis
  • Sales team development and management
  • Operations management
  • Financial analysis and management
  • Project management

Education Sector Support
(Community Colleges, Collective Impact Improvement Models)

  • Program analysis
  • Project management
  • Advocacy and community engagement
  • Facilitation



Your Vision. Our Mission.