Archive for September, 2013

Lessons Learned at the Rocky Mountain Tax Seminar

Friday, September 27th, 2013

Last week I had the privilege of attending the Rocky Mountain Tax Seminar for Private Foundations hosted by El Pomar Foundation. As a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music and a violinist by training, the thought of studying tax law for three days was daunting. Regardless, the information I learned will be invaluable as I embark on my new career. (more…)

Regional Spotlight: South West Open School

Thursday, September 26th, 2013

Southwest Open School is an extraordinary charter school operating out of Cortez, Colorado. Targeting at-risk high-school age youth, Southwest Open School stands out because of its unique approach and impressive results. Oftentimes, students come to Southwest Open School as a last-resort, having left or been expelled from their previous institutions due to behavior problems, lack of engagement, or external issues above and beyond the scope of a typical high school student. Southwest Open School transforms lives and re-writes futures through a nurturing program focused on character development, respect, and experiential education. Reportedly, 90.3% of graduates from Southwest Open School go on to secure a job or continue on to higher education within three years of graduating. These numbers are significant given that only 24% of Cortez residents over 25 years old hold a bachelor’s degree, 8% hold a graduate or professional degree, while 12% of the population are unemployed. Fellows in the Southwest Region had the privilege of conducting a Community Impact Visit at the Southwest Open School in August to learn more about the school and evaluate a regional grant from the Southwest Regional Council to support the SWOSology program.


Leadership Across Generations

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

As a first year Fellow attending Leadership Plenty, I was overjoyed to be in a room with established leaders in the Colorado Springs area.  Organized through the El Pomar Emerging Leader Development (ELD) program, Leadership Plenty was an opportunity for both young and seasoned professionals to engage in leadership training. Led by Matt Carpenter and Kate Deeny, ELD participants joined the first year El Pomar Fellows for discussion, professional development, and networking. (more…)

Reflections from the Korbel Dinner

Friday, September 20th, 2013

Given the politically divisive climate that encompassed my introduction to American politics over the last fifteen years, I am accustomed to judging the character of politicians by their policies and presentation on the news.  Last week, my opinions changed dramatically.

On Monday, September 9, 2013, I attended the 16th annual Korbel Dinner hosted by the University of Denver’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies.   President George W. Bush was awarded the Global Service Award and CEO of Arrow electronics, Michael J. Long, with the International Bridge Builders award.


Survivor Moab: Fellowship Edition

Monday, September 16th, 2013













The Low Down…

The 16 Fellows of El Pomar embarked on a 6-day 100 mile journey down the Cataract Canyon with Colorado Outward Bound School. Accompanied by Fellowship Director Gary Butterworth and Kate Deeny, Deputy Director of the Fellowship, the group rafted down the Colorado River experiencing nature at its finest, and learning about leadership, group dynamics, and each other in the process. (more…)

Spotlight: Bright Futures for Early Childhood and Families

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

The children will soon be returning from a safari to a bright classroom!

Bright Futures for Early Childhood and Families is paving the way for early childhood education in Telluride, Colorado. With the help of El Pomar grant funding in 2001, they were able to open a new early education and childcare facility. This facility, one of ten preschools in San Miguel County and one of five in Telluride, was constructed with the help of El Pomar grant funding in 2011. The preschool gives students the opportunity to engage with their surroundings and realize their full academic potential. During a recent visit to the site by two El Pomar Fellows, the children were off on an all-day safari, exploring Telluride’s natural landscape. (more…)

Fire Mitigation: Sharing the Responsibility

Friday, September 6th, 2013


In the past two years, the Colorado Springs area experienced the two most destructive wildfires in state history.  According to the Gazette, the Waldo Canyon and Black Forest fire killed 4 people, destroyed 833 homes, and cost $600 million in insurance claims.

We can’t predict when or where the next fire will occur, but in the wake of the recent devastation, being prepared is critical.