Choose Your Team
Event Planning

Captured Event

March 12, 2010 - Colorado Nonprofit Association Recognizes Job Well Done

What: Awards Luncheon

Where: Marriott City Center

When: Friday, March 12, 2010

Time: 11:30 am-1:00 pm

Co-Chair(s): Juan Botello

President(s): Renny Fagan

Staff: Renny Fagan (President/CEO), Sharon Knight, Jeannie Nims, Valerie Passerini, Richard Peterson, Sharon Prueitt, Sara Raab, Gerry Rasel, Erin Spletzer, Sarah Platt Stockton, Mark Turner

Speaker: Mayor John Hickenlooper, Juan Botello (Board Chair), Don Elliman (Colorado Chief Operating Officer) Tom Downey (Former Board Chair)

Catering: Denver Marriott City Center

Sponsors: Boettcher Foundation, The Denver Foundation, Denver Post Community, Colorado Health Foundation, Daniels Fund, Rose Community Foundation, The Colorado Trust, Pinnacol Assurance, BKD LLP, Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, Kundinger Corder & Engle, Psimo Contemporary Art Glass, Kaiser Permanente; Table Sponsors: ANI-RRG, Aponte & Busam Inc., CHARG Resource Center, Colorado Nonprofit Development Center, Colorado State Bank and Trust NA, Community First Foundation, Community Resource Center, El Pomar Foundation, Food Bank of the Rockies, Mountain States Employers Council, Nonprofit Resources Inc, Seniors' Resource Center, Timothy & Bernadette Marquez Foundation, Xcel Energy

Menu: Spring greens, Boursin stuffed chicken, adelia and chocolate berry trifle

Attire: Business Casual

Event Coordinator: Sara Raab

Board of Directors: Rebecca Arno, Bruce Atchison, Juan Botello, Tom Downey, Cynthia Evans, Susan France, Sonya Garcia Ulibarri, Mary Anne Harvey, Lucille Johnson, Noreen Keleshian, Monique Lovato, Elaine Mariner, Rich Martinez, Lydia McCoy, Lisa Meacham, Frances Owens, Katherine Peck, Kevin Seggelke, Tim Walsworth, Brad Young

Blacktie Photos by: M. Darcy

 Katie Kramer handing David Burgess his award
Katie Kramer handing David Burgess his award

Colorado Nonprofit Association Recognizes Job Well Done

Story by M. Darcy 


“Stop moping and take credit where credit is due,” Tom Downey opened, “You've made it this far.”  The past Board Chair of the Colorado Nonprofits Association was referring to fiscal year 2009, and he was offering a rousing final speech to the hundreds of members and government officials gathered last Friday to celebrate its 2010 Award winners.  He commended them all for “working together, stepping up and stepping in to fill the gaps others have had to leave behind” in order to get through a very tough year.  


If the speeches that day sounded a bit like a lifeboat pep-talk from Molly Brown, it couldn't be more appropriate.  Fiscal year 2009 was the “perfect storm” for many nonprofits, Don Elliman, Colorado Chief Operating Officer, observed at the luncheon.  Government cutbacks, fewer donations and sponsorships, yet a higher, more urgent community need than ever all crashed down on the budgets of Colorado NPOs – the third largest employment sector in the state.  “The roles of nonprofits have never been more important,” Elliman added, “and the survivors of this storm have had to buckle down and make hard decisions to keep standing.”  While rescue isn't soon forthcoming in his economic forecast, Elliman pointed out what many nonprofits have been too humble to admit – that they've been able to help themselves and all the individuals who count on them by collaborating.  “Foundations talking to each other is unheard of in other states,” he commented.


When a community has come through a crisis it's more important than ever to step back and count heads, to acknowledge what you've been able to do and to recognize the leaders who stepped up.  The community crisis we've undergone may make this year's award winners that much more significant.


The William Funk Award for Building Stronger Communities went to the founder of the Capitol Hill Action and Recreation Group Resource Center, David Burgess.  “The most important lesson I have simply this: to recognize the value of acting in a true partnership with those we serve,” Burgess said.  CHARG Resource Center is the only clinic in existence that submits its policies to a board made up of its own consumers, the homeless mentally ill, in this case.


The same award was presented to Paulette Church, Executive Director of the Durango Adult Education Center, which helps clients achieve financial and English literacy, obtain their GED and gain other work skills.  “A strong nonprofit,” she said” can look outward at bigger problems in its community and collaborate with others to tackle them.”  Her Center envisioned the Commons, a building that houses multiple nonprofits.  Church says it “symbolizes how a true community venture can be dreamt of, brought into existance and sustained.”


The Steve Graham Award for Building Nonprofit Capacity was given to Cathy Robbins of El Pomar Foundation.  “None of us makes it this far without tremendous encouragement,” Robbins said, “...with lots of support from board members and other nonprofit executives, the opportunity to assist other nonprofit leaders came easy.”


Legislator of the Year was awarded to Dianne Primavera for her 40 years' work in the areas of disability, employment and health care.  “The nonprofit sector in Colorado helps provide services that the state cannot afford to, something that helps make my job as a legislator a little easier.


The Public Service Lifetime Achievement Award went to Senator Maryanne (Moe) Keller, who has spent her career advocating for children and families.  Borrowing a line she'd read, Keller noted, “The world is run by those who show up; Colorado Nonprofits showed up.”  She also added, “the recession forces us to re-evaluate our priorities.  We must decide what is most important to us, what services we wish to receive from our government, community, church groups, each other.”


A new award was created this year, the Excellence in Media Award.  Goodwill Industries nominated Comcast, which has a culture of community giving and regularly donates a media platform through public service announcements.  Cindy Parsons accepted on behalf of the company.


Congratulations to this year's winners and to the organizations who have all impacted our lives.  For more information about the Colorado Nonprofit Association go to or call 303-832-5710.




See More Past Events