Agents Give Back: Meet Ashley Hustad & The BAY

No one was at all impatient with a four-year-old who was just learning. People have told me over and over again that there is something about The BAY that is palpable. You just have to experience it.

Ashley Hustad has lived most of her life in Lincoln, Nebraska, and her passion for serving the community in both her personal and professional life is evident.

She briefly tried a couple of different career paths, but she always knew she was drawn to people and problem-solving, so she made the move to real estate in 2004. While her professional career quickly grew, Ashley and her high school sweetheart, Mark, also grew their family, which eventually led her to an organization she has become deeply passionate about.

One Saturday a few years ago, Ashley took her oldest son Declan to a place called The BAY for “skate school.” As far as Ashley knew, she was just at an indoor skate park. She had no idea that both the venue and the skating lessons served a larger purpose—but she felt the place was different somehow than just an ordinary skate park.

She says she saw so many different types of people—and everyone was willing to help. She started asking questions and quickly learned that The BAY was about much more than just skating.

One Saturday a few years ago, Ashley took her oldest son Declan to a place called The BAY for “skate school.” As far as Ashley knew, she was just at an indoor skate park. She had no idea that both the venue and the skating lessons served a larger purpose—but she felt the place was different somehow than just an ordinary skate park.

She says she saw so many different types of people—and everyone was willing to help. She started asking questions and quickly learned that The BAY was about much more than just skating.

Everything has a purpose and a passion. I saw the weight of the problems they were going after and felt an overwhelming need to help with something I hadn’t even known existed.

Ashley quickly became a familiar face around The BAY and, not long after, a member of the board. The BAY has taken a multi-faceted approach to a complex problem; they meet tangible needs now, as part of their long-term goal of ending generational poverty.

"With dignity, anyone can come in with a need. There’s a full-time, in-house community support outreach worker."

The BAY also hosts Lincoln’s Skate for Change chapter, which encourages the skateboarders to take action to improve their communities. “You see this group of kids take off on their skateboards to deliver hygiene packs, socks, or food to the homeless population of Lincoln; it’s heart-expanding stuff!” Ashley says.

These are some ways immediate needs are met, but The BAY is also helping shape the future. It provides young people with access and exposure to art, technology and equipment, and music they might not otherwise get the chance to experience.  

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Outside of her community involvement, work, and church, Ashley enjoys spending time with her husband, Mark, and their five children: Declan, Lincoln, Brooks, Jaxen, and Harley. Mark and Ashley’s children joined their family through foster care and adoption, topics Ashley is passionate about. She also loves to create fun experiences for her family and be intentional about making memories together. 


This article originally appeared in the March issue of Lincoln Real Producers. The story was written by Micayla McElvain and photography was taken by Whitney Harms.

Colby Ray