Trees, Water, People supports innovative social investments through Donor Advised funds

Launching the CiviCO Leadership Academy

Loveland Foundry grand opening

Donation puts Estes Park Learning Place on solid footing for the future
Intercultural Harmony and Rural Grants announced
Take a tour of the new online fund portal
NoCo nonprofits at Colorado Planned Giving Roundtable Summer Symposium
  In memoriam: Gene Mitchell

Breaking Good News NoCo


Trees, Water and People supports innovative social investments through Donor Advised Funds

Local nonprofit Trees, Water and People (TWP) believes one way to slow migration influx to the United States is to invest in the rural economy in Central America, which includes small farmers who depend on coffee for their livelihood. When international coffee prices plunged to 15-year low last year, millions of these vulnerable families saw their livelihoods disappear.

Working with a few of the Foundation’s Donor Advised funds, TWP is helping to change the prospects for some of the farmers.

The organization, with the support of CFNC donors, was able to channel a six-figure investment to a vetted, on-location social enterprise that helps farmers transition their coffee farms to more valuable crops. In the first year of this partnership, TWP helped 200 farmers plant turmeric, vanilla, ginger, and fruit trees on their farms to diversify their crops.

After the first turmeric harvest, farmers reported average gross revenues of $2,500 – around $500 per acre – a huge increase over coffee, and a significant portion of their annual household income.

TWP was able to structure both short-term and long-term investments based on innovative agreements with the donors. And to-date, 50 percent of the funds invested have been repaid and are thus available to generate additional impact for Central American farmers. Sebastian Africano, executive director of TWP, explains this arrangement “is a great way to use the Foundation’s Donor Advised funds to take action on some of the most pressing issues in our hemisphere, while helping a 21-year-old nonprofit innovate, grow, and act as international ambassador for the Fort Collins community.”

Launching the CiviCO Leadership Academy

The Community Foundation and CiviCO proudly announce the launch of a cross-sector, statewide leadership program. This program is focused on bringing together people from the public, private and nonprofit (social) sectors to have lasting community impact.  City managers from Fort Collins and Greeley are joining with business and nonprofit leaders in this inaugural class.

"We believe this program will be transformational,” said Suzanne Peterson, chair of the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado Board of Trustees. “Our excitement not only stems from each participant's leadership development opportunity, but we also believe this is a program that can help build stronger regional cooperation here in Northern Colorado, while also establishing stronger connections between our region and the rest of the state.”  

The nine-month program combines world-class digital curriculum in partnership with noted management firm, McKinsey and Company, one-on-one executive coaching and personal development planning with BetterUp, and hands-on training led by CiviCO. 

Announcing the Northern Colorado 2020 cohort:

Name Title Org/Affiliation Sector
Darin Atteberry City Manager City of Fort Collins Public
Chris Banks CFO & Co-owner Odell Brewing Company, Inc. Business
Ray Caraway President Community Foundation of Northern Colorado Social
Chase Christensen Broker Cushman & Wakefield Business
John Dellenbach Executive Manager Dellenbach Motors Business
Jennifer Guerriero CEO Light Center Inc. Business
Ann Hutchison Executive Vice President Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce Social
Douglas Johnson Chair TIGER21 Business
Mindy McCloughan CEO & President Loveland Chamber of Commerce Social
Kevin Mullin Executive Director Estes Park Health Foundation Social
Roy Otto City Manager City of Greeley Public
Brent Porter Construction Manager Nutrien Ag Solutions Business
Michelle Provaznik Executive Director Gardens on Spring Creek Public/Social Partnership
Kim Tobin Vice President Colorado State University Public
Cheryl Zimlich Executive Director Bohemian Foundation Social


For more information about the CiviCO Leadership Academy, please visit or email 


Loveland recently celebrated the grand opening of its landmark downtown revitalization achievement in the plaza of The Foundry. This $76 million development includes: the seven-screen MetroLux Dine-In Theatre, the 102-room TownPlace Suites by Marriott hotel, two five-story mixed-use residential and commercial buildings, a 460-space parking garage owned by the city, and the 43,000-square-foot central public plaza. The Community Foundation, with leadership from its Loveland Community Fund Committee, helped serve as a catalyst for Loveland’s downtown revitalization by convening both national experts and invested citizens as part of Destination Downtown Loveland events.

The Foundation's Loveland Community Fund is also a sponsor for the Foundry Plaza’s first year of programming.

Photo: Jay Hardy, president of Brinkman, cuts the ribbon to officially open The Foundry.

Donation puts Estes Park Learning Place on solid footing for the future

Since its founding in 1998, the Estes Park Learning Place (EPLP) has helped students of all ages reach their highest potential through services such as one-to-one tutoring, GED testing and preparation, and ACT/SAT preparation. A recent gift of $300,000 from the Foundation’s Krumme Family Fund positions the EPLP to create an endowment, allowing them to continue and develop more programs in the future.

“The Krumme family’s confidence in our mission gives us the opportunity to become a sustainable organization for many years to come,” said EPLP Executive Director Sue Yowell. “Through the Estes Park Learning Place Growth Fund, we hope to grow this initial generous donation, create an endowment, and build a healthy reserve fund.”

“It is an honor to support the educational mission of The Estes Park Learning Place,” writes a representative for the Krumme Family Fund. “May this grant help them continue their good work.” 


The Laura Jane Musser Fund offers two grants: 

The Rural Initiative helps strengthen communities under 10,000 people through various grants up to $25,000. Grant applications are accepted through October 3, 2019.

The Intercultural Harmony Initiative supports projects that promote mutual understanding between community members of different cultural backgrounds. Grant applications are accepted online Sept. 16-Oct. 16.

For details and to apply visit the fund's website.

Take a tour of the new online fund portal

We recently improved our online portal, making it more convenient and faster.  To familiarize fund representatives with the features of the portal, we have created brief instructional videos that are available on the online portal as well as the donor resource webpage.

Haven't registered yet? All fund advisors must create an account through the new portal to access their fund information. This quick video will show you how:

create your account

Our donor services team is here to assist you! Please contact Elizabeth Messerli, Donor Services Manager, at or (970) 488-1986 with any questions.

The Community Foundation of Northern Colorado sponsored seven nonprofits at Colorado Planned Giving Roundtable Summer Symposium in Denver on August 21 and 22. CPGR brought in over a dozen experts to teach sessions to nonprofits about planned giving. Nonprofit scholarship recipients represented in this photo (left to right): Hearts and Horses, Food Bank for Larimer County, Alternatives to Violence, Homeward Alliance, Loveland Habitat for Humanity, Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, and ChildSafe. The Foundation's Eastern Colorado Community Fund director John Chapdelaine also attended (pictured on the right).

In memoriam: Gene Mitchell

Gene Mitchell, Old Town Square visionary and developer, passed away on August 19. A former Community Foundation Trustee and Estes Valley Community Fund committee member, Gene looked at Fort Collins’ decaying downtown of the 1970s and envisioned a car-free gathering place with restored historic buildings, restaurants, nightlife, and retailers.  Through years of hard work of many people and outstanding collaboration, Gene’s vision of Old Town Square blossomed into the incredible community asset it is today.

Other notable projects Mitchell developed include the Marriott hotel on Horsetooth Road, The Square on College Avenue, and Scotch Pines on Lemay Avenue and Drake Road. He and his wife Ruth Ann — who preceded him in death earlier this year — resided in Carlsbad, Calif. 


back to the top

previous issues








Subscribe to the Enewsletter 

Stay current on news and happenings of the Foundation and its nonprofit partners.



Breaking Good News NoCo

Good news is contagious. We invite 501(c)(3) public charities that serve Northern Colorado residents to share a success story, a milestone, or an achievement, and we will gladly help spread the word on our website and social media!

Submit your news here


August - September


As a new partner agency of Realities For Children, One Community One Family received six bikes to pass on to six kids. One Community One Family shares that the kids were very excited to receive the gift and gives thanks all those who made this possible. 


CASA of Larimer County shares that Conduct All Electric donated all of the labor and materials needed to upgrade the electrical services at its Harmony House. To make breaking good news even better, Conduct's office manager signed up to be a CASA volunteer!


Fort Collins Symphony, founded by Maestro Will Schwartz on October 5, 1949, turns 70 as it begins its new season on October 5. Now under the baton of Maestro Wes Kenney, the orchestra is celebrating the legacy of Maestro Schwartz and everyone who has worked, contributed, or played a part in the organization. The Symphony will be playing the works of time-honored composers as well as two newly commissioned pieces.


On September 3, a crane set houses on their new foundations for Berthoud Habitat for Humanity. These homes were built by Thompson Valley High School and Loveland High School in their Geometry in Construction programs.

Share this Enewsletter with friends: