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HISTORY          RURAL PHILANTHROPY DAYS         IMPACT

Rural Philanthropy Days History

In 1989, only three percent of grants from Colorado’s private funding community were awarded outside of the Front Range, according to research conducted at the time by the Community Resource Center (CRC). In response, the Anschutz Family Foundation initiated the Colorado Rural Philanthropy Days (RPD) program in partnership with CRC as a way to encourage Front Range foundations to travel to and become better acquainted with different rural regions in the state.

In 1991, after participating in the first “Philanthropy Days” in Mesa County – engineered by local nonprofits and CRC, Sue Anschutz-Rodgers asked CRC’s executive director, Steve Graham, to join with the Anschutz Family Foundation in continuing this event throughout the state. Sue’s vision was to create an opportunity to build relationships between grantmakers who are concentrated along the Front Range and rural nonprofit organizations.

Sue, with her strong rural roots and interest in rural philanthropy, hosted a number of meetings and sent countless letters to Colorado grantmakers, both public and private, in an attempt to secure their support and participation.

RPD events were held on the Western Slope and in the San Luis Valley and southwest region of the state, with participation from 4-5 Front Range foundations.

EVOLUTION
1997

A formal partnership was forged between the Anschutz Family Foundation and the CRC, expanding the RPD program within four rural regions, covering all corners of the state.

2000

Four rural regions were split into seven smaller regions, providing for two annual RPDs held in different regions of the state on a rotating cycle.

2004

An eighth region was established, allowing each region to host an RPD conference every four years on a rotating cycle.

2016

Marks the 25th anniversary of RPD

A Look Back

Rural communities (large and small) across Colorado have proudly hosted Rural Philanthropy Days for the past 25 years.

Year Region Host Community(s)
1991 Western Slope Grand Junction
1995 San Luis Valley Alamosa
1997 Western Slope
Southeast
Grand Junction
La Junta & Lamar
1998 Southwest Durango
1999 Western Slope
San Luis Valley
Glenwood Springs
Alamosa
2000 Northeast
Heart of Colorado
Fort Morgan & Brush
Buena Vista & Leadville
2001 Western Slope
Northwest
Montrose
Steamboat Springs & Craig
2002 Southwest
Southeast
Durango
La Junta
2003 San Luis Valley
Mountain
Alamosa
Vail
2004 Northeast
Heart of Colorado
Sterling
Cañon City
2005 Western Slope
Northwest
Telluride
Granby
2006 Southwest
Southeast
Durango
La Junta
2007 Mountain
San Luis Valley
Leadville
Alamosa
2008 Northeast
Heart of Colorado
Burlington
Cripple Creek
2009 Western Slope
Northwest
Mt. Crested Butte
Steamboat Springs
2010 Southwest
Southeast
Mancos
La Junta
2011 Mountain
San Luis Valley
Edwards
Saguache
2012 Northeast
Heart of Colorado
Fort Morgan & Brush
Salida
2013 Western Slope
Northwest
Ouray & Ridgeway
Winter Park
2014 Southwest
Southeast
Pagosa Springs
Trinidad
2015 Mountain
San Luis Valley
Rifle & Silt
Creede
2016 Northeast
Heart of Colorado
Holyoke & Haxtun
Copper Mountain