Using My Past to Inform the Present
By Ulises Flores
Growing up in southeast Pueblo, Colorado allowed me to access snowboarding, mountain ranges, hiking and soccer from an early age. While growing up, soccer was my passion, and I remember traveling to Colorado Springs to play at El Pomar Youth Sports Park. Having the opportunity to play the sport I love at such a beautiful facility was my first exposure to El Pomar’s philanthropic endeavors.
Coming from a low-income family, I benefitted from the contributions of El Pomar and other similar entities as well as from nonprofit organizations in southern Colorado. For example, I used to be part of the English as a Second Language program provided at my local middle school. Living at home, Spanish was my first language, and this extra support helped me better understand English and achieve educational success. Programs like these not only teach young students grammar and reading skills, but also give them general confidence in their abilities. Through this experience, I have seen firsthand how impactful grant dollars can be on a person and on a community.
As someone who has been on the receiving end of philanthropic efforts, I am very excited to lean on my perspective and experiences to relate to different communities in my work at El Pomar. My past will inform how I strive to fulfill Spencer and Julie Penrose’s mission to enhance, encourage and promote the current and future well-being of the people of Colorado. I aspire to demonstrate how philanthropic efforts can make a significant impact on one’s life and a community at large.
Ulises Flores joined El Pomar Foundation as a member of the 2019 Fellowship class. As a Fellow, Ulises works on American Council of Young Political Leaders, Hundred Club of Colorado Springs, Wildland Fire Fund, Western Legislative Academy and Investment Challenge. In addition, Ulises supports the North and Pikes Peak regions. Read more about Ulises here.