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Regional Partnerships - A Letter from the Director

Tags: Regional Partnerships



Livable communities to work, play, and stay.

A Letter from the Director


2018 marked the 15th year for Regional Partnerships, the perfect opportunity to step back, reflect on accomplishments, and think strategically about how the program can be most impactful moving forward. To this end, we conducted a multi-faceted evaluation of the program’s value and strengths in order to establish a strategic plan that will help us best support communities throughout Colorado. Thank you to those of you who participated through the survey or interviews with staff or Fellows. Following this evaluation, conversations with El Pomar Foundation Trustees led to the establishment of three priorities for the next phase of Regional Partnerships: 

1) Convene: How can we most effectively convene leaders and organizations across the state to support the strategic grant making efforts of our Councils, promote shared information, and encourage collaboration among organizations and funders?

2) Support Grantee Success: How can we best support the success of our grantees through resources, information, and access to the Foundation’s network?

3) Increase Effectiveness through Internal Development: How can we provide skills and opportunities to El Pomar Trustees, staff, and Fellows that will allow them to better support Colorado communities?

Throughout 2019, we will work to answer these questions in ways that are sustainable and valuable for both the Foundation and the communities we serve. At the same time, we look forward to the continued work of each Council this year. From mental and behavioral health to workforce development, and out-of-school time for children to homelessness, Councils continue to tackle some of the most complex social issues in their communities by utilizing persistence and collaboration through multi-year grants.

In terms of our quantitative outcomes in 2018, Council member feedback provided through one-on-one interviews indicated that in addition to the priorities above, we must continue to improve in the areas of Council member engagement and the evaluation of multi-year grants. We will also focus specifically on developing strategies that maximize our ability to leverage relationships and resources for the betterment of local communities. We remain grateful for your involvement with Regional Partnerships—it is the dedication and engagement of you as Council members that allows us to make a difference throughout Colorado, and we are grateful for comments like the following, which demonstrate the mutuality of our relationship:

  • “Serving on the Northeast Regional Council is one of the things I find most rewarding.”
  • “The connections of the Council and the desire to come together and work to find solutions for the San Luis Valley are of great value.”
  • “Regional Partnerships is the one exception where it feels equitable for those of us not on the Front Range. I revel in the vision that was and is Regional Partnerships.”

Enjoy a snapshot of the work of all 11 Councils and read the 2018 Foundation Giving in Colorado report, which explores funding disparities across the state. We look forward to the rest of 2019, as we continue to challenge ourselves to more effectively work together for livable communities to work, play, and stay.


Cathy Robbins

Director of Regional Partnerships