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The Telluride Foundation's Board of Directors held its bi-annual meeting on July 6th, 2011. Highlights of the meeting included the election of Richard Betts and Megan McManemin to the Grants Committee, approval of a $75,000 Special Initiative Grant for the Telluride Gold Run Early Education/Child Care Facility, approval of a two-phased grant outcomes strategy, and a presentation of the Naturita Library and University of the San Miguel's new video conferencing and online classroom capabilities, funded in-part by the Foundation's Paradox Strengthening Communities Grant.


Richard Betts and Meagan McManemin were elected to serve three-year terms on the Foundation's Grants Committee. Betts, a long-time Telluride local and owner and founder of ASAP Business, has served on the board since 2001. Recently elected Board member Megan McManemin has long been activily involved with local nonprofits and nonprofit activities throughout the region.


"I look forward to having Richard and Megan on the Grants Committee," said Grants Committee chairperson Tricia Maxon. "They both know Telluride well and bring a wealth of experience with the community and nonprofits, which will be an asset to the committee."


The Telluride Foundation awarded $75,000 towards the construction of the Gold Run Early Education/Child Care Facility on the east end of Telluride. The Gold Run Committee commissioned Bright Futures to raise $150,000 toward the building of an affordable, early education/child care facility to provide quality childcare to the working-class parents of the Telluride region. At present, the Town of Telluride has four preschools and one infant toddler program located within town limits, though only one program, Rainbow, has a permanent home that is secured as a child care facility. As all new parents in town know, Telluride has a child care facility shortage with year-long waiting lists. The Gold Run facility will be targeted towards working families to ensure that they have quality and affordable childcare allowing greater participation in the workforce. When completed, the facility will be located on the westernmost lot of the Gold Run Subdivsion, Lot 3, and will include 1,100 sq.ft. finished interior space, 1,161 sq.ft. of developed yard space and decks, 1,100 sq.ft. unfinished basement storage and four parking spaces. A drop-off area will be installed adjacent to the alley south of the facility. As designed, the Facility can serve approximately 15-20 children per day depending on the age group. This planned capacity should have considerable reach in the community as the 21-24 children-per-day facilities in Town currently serve 32-40 families each. This project is a unique collaborative effort between San Miguel County, the Town of Telluride and the non-profit community.


Perhaps having the most long-term effect was the approval of a two-phased grant making strategy for the Foundation designed to increase its impact and help guide the Foundation's grant making in a future of limited resources and increased need. Key to the new strategy is bringing in local nonprofit organizations into sector-based collaborative working groups in an effort to agree on common goals and outcomes that all can work towards. The Foundation will work with local nonprofits to determine desired outcomes, indicators, measurements and measurement tools as well as bring in professional consultants to perform peer reviews to validate the sector outcome measure. Starting with Phase One, Foundation staff will initiate work with early childhood education, education and environment sector nonprofits; during Phase Two, staff will expand work to the remaining sectors (health and human services, health and wellness, arts and culture, athletics, animals) for implementation during 2012. Phase Two will also include aligning the Foundation's grant applications evaluation with the newly created sector outcomes.


The Foundation began its relationship with the Montrose Regional Library with an $80,000 Special Initiative grant to help build the new Naturita Community Library. It also has supported the University Centers of the San Miguel (UCSM) since its inception in 2005. During the Board Meeting, both organizations gave a live presentation of their new video conferencing system designed to bring higher education to western Montrose County, funded through a grant from the Paradox Strengthening Communities Fund.


The Telluride Foundation exists to create a stronger Telluride community through the cultivation and promotion of philanthropy. It is a nonprofit, apolitical community foundation that provides year-round support for local organizations involved in arts, education, athletics, charitable causes, land conservation and other community-based efforts through technical assistance, education and grant making. As a grant maker, the Foundation awards grants to qualified applicants that serve the people living and/or working in the Telluride region for the purpose of enhancing the quality of life within the region. For more information on the Telluride Foundation, visit