Archive for June, 2012

Colorado the Brave, America the Beautiful

Thursday, June 28th, 2012

Dakota Sandras

Just before a presidential election, there is a lot of arguing about the state of our country. In all honesty, if you had asked me my thoughts on the subject last week, I probably would have had a negative response. But not after today.

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Rural Philanthropy: Small Towns, Big Impact

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

Ben Jourdan

I am writing this blog in the passenger seat of a compact car with an air conditioning system that must have died a long time ago. El Pomar Senior Vice President Matt Carpenter and Grants Administrator Mary Rose Corser are sweating alongside me as we drive along I-76 westbound in Morgan County. We are heading back to Colorado Springs from a three-day trip to Fort Morgan and Brush, where we attended the Northeast Rural Philanthropy Days (RPD).

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El Pomar Supports Wildfire Response with Emergency Grants

Sunday, June 24th, 2012

El Pomar Foundation today announced it has approved $205,400 in emergency grants to support local efforts to combat Colorado’s wildfire outbreak. The grants directly support Colorado firefighting agencies and other nonprofits providing services to individuals affected by the fires. The grants come from El Pomar’s internal Wild Land Fire Fund, established in 2002 at the height of the Hayman Fire.

“The trustees are committed to supporting El Pomar’s mission of contributing to the well-being of the people of Colorado and understand fulfilling that mission can take many forms,” said El Pomar Chairman and CEO William J. Hybl. “The Wild Land Fire Fund allows us to act quickly to assist the organizations working to keep our communities safe.”

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Making a RECognizable Difference

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

Emily Orbanek and Dakota Sandras

When you ask students what their favorite thing about Riverside Educational Center is, they have many things they could tell you. They could express their excitement about the rocket launcher and CO2 car experiments they are working on, or tell you about the upcoming martial arts class. Instead, they almost all answer that the best part about Riverside is the homework. That isn’t a typical response coming from an average student, but it goes to show that Riverside Educational Center is not a typical place.

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Bridging the Communication Gap

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Sabrina Ragaller

Collaboration is quite the buzzword these days. Just next week, several of our staff members will be traveling to Fort Morgan for the latest installment of Rural Philanthropy Days (RPD), a program that seeks to build relationships between rural nonprofits and funders. (more…)

Trustees Approve Grants

Monday, June 18th, 2012

El Pomar Trustees recently approved 61 grants totaling over $2 million. Grants went to organizations located in 26 different Colorado counties.

Grant recipients include:

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Innovation in Government Pays Off

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

Sabrina Ragaller

Earlier this year, El Pomar’s Forum for Civic Advancement invited Dr. Phyllis Resnick to speak to the community about the fiscal sustainability of  state government in Colorado.

Resnick’s presentation on the research of the University of Denver’s Center for Colorado’s Economic Future was thought provoking. It demonstrated why economics has become known as the “dismal science” considering the state budget will be facing an over $3 billion gap between General Fund revenues and spending by 2024.

Managing the state budget is going to be quite the challenge in the years to come and policymakers will have to evaluate and reevaluate what the government will be able to achieve. With limited dollars to go around and important policies in education, healthcare, and human services to fund, it’s easy to see how financing innovation could be low on the priority list.

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A Day at the Circus and a Tribute to Our Military

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012


With five bases within a 40-mile radius, it is safe to say El Pomar’s hometown of Colorado Springs is a military town. And the military is a vital component of the Colorado Springs community, helping drive the economy and shape the area’s future. The strong military presence is visible throughout the Pikes Peak region, where it is common for civilians to interact with uniformed men and women on a daily basis.

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Innovation, Risk, and the Public Sector

Saturday, June 9th, 2012

Sabrina Ragaller

National Public Radio recently ran a series on the groundbreaking work of Australian scientist Scott O’Neill, who has developed a process for genetically modifying mosquitoes to be resistant to dengue fever.  For two decades, O’Neill’s laboratory has spent hours upon hours painstakingly injecting mosquito eggs with the dengue-resistant bacteria. The success rate was often frustratingly low. Sometimes 18,000 carefully injected eggs resulted in….nothing.

As I marveled at O’Neill’s dedication and otherworldly patience, I was most struck by his willingness to invest 20 years in one big risk.

If Americans were asked to describe government in one word, I can guarantee virtually no one would say “innovative.”  Or adventurous, daring, creative, or entrepreneurial. Risk-taking simply does not belong in the realm of government.

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Meet the Summer Interns!

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

Dakota Sandras

On Monday, El Pomar Foundation will welcome the last of seven undergraduate students participating in the 2012 Internship Program. Interns will have an opportunity to work on a variety of projects with El Pomar staff and fellows. The interns bring diverse perspectives to the Foundation, hailing from across the country. They also bring an array of academic backgrounds, with majors ranging from art history to public policy.

Get to know the new interns by reading their biographies here:

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