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Celebrating 80 Years - “Strengthening the Civic Fabric,” 1993, Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast Network

Tags: #Celebrating80Years

#Celebrating80Years: 2017 marked 80 years of working with Colorado’s nonprofits as they seek to strengthen their communities. Throughout 2018, we will be looking back on this history of the outstanding organizations and people the Trustees have had the opportunity to support. On the blog you will find a history of the Foundation’s grant making and a representative organization from every year since our founding in 1937.


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Various programs offered by RMPBS

Local public broadcasting is a cornerstone of democracy built on the notion that citizens are able to engage in the community on a deeper level when that news is localized, accessible, and instructive. Since 1956 the Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast Network has worked to “strengthen the civic fabric of Colorado” by providing inspiring and informative programming throughout the state.


Grantee Spotlight: Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast Network

The Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast Network formed in 1956 as the parent company of the Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast System (Rocky Mountain PBS) to meet the news needs of citizens in Denver. At its inception, it served as an educational television station owned by Denver Public Schools and directed by Jim Case, a professor at the nearby University of Denver. Slowly, the company expanded throughout Colorado to hold prominent positions in communities across the state and now holds the honor of operating the oldest public television station in the Rocky Mountains. Today, the Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast Network includes Rocky Mountain PBS, KUVO jazz public radio, and, as of 2013, I-News. Rocky Mountain PBS is known for top-quality content and has become a consistent Emmy award recipient, including five won in 2018.

62 years after its creation, Rocky Mountain Public Broadcast Network remains a flagship parent company in the region. Between its large reach throughout Colorado, public-service journalism through in-depth news coverage in I-News, and service as a radio cultural hub through KUVO, the organization has a positive impact on countless Coloradans.

In 1993, El Pomar gave the Rocky Mountain Broadcast Network a capital grant of $500,000 to support the construction of its Learning Services Center, and continued to support the organization in the following years. The organization is a four-time Awards for Excellence recipient and has also received El Pomar grants toward the conversion to digital broadcasting and an educational outreach campaign to celebrate and encourage Colorado philanthropy.


El Pomar in 1993:

The Foundation made 177 grants in 1993 for a total of $4.7 million. The year’s largest contribution was the $670,000 awarded to the Colorado Springs Symphony as a challenge grant. Another significant capital grant was provided to the Nature Conservancy for the purchase and preservation of Aiken Canyon in Colorado Springs. The Foundation also continued its support of amateur sports organizations, including $100,000 to USA Basketball for the renovation of its office building and $80,000 to the American Amateur Racquetball Association for the purchase of a building.


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Spotlight by MacKenzie Mantsch