Our Work in 
Eagle County

The Western Colorado Community Foundation has a 15-year history of working in Eagle County.  Our first donor-advised fund benefiting Eagle County was established in 2002.  WCCF now manages nine different endowed funds that provide grant funding to Eagle County nonprofit organizations and scholarships to Eagle County students.  

 

For a complete list of funds benefiting Eagle County and grants to local nonprofits, please visit our website and click on Eagle County on the regional map on our Home Page, wc-cf.org.

Western Colorado Community Foundation surprises Vail Valley Salvation Army with $25,000 grant

Mike Rushmore, founder of Our Community Foundation of Eagle County, and Anne Wenzel deliver a grant check to Tsu Wolin-Brown at the food pantry for the Vail Valley Salvation Army in Avon.
Several months ago the Vail Valley Salvation Army received notice it would not be receiving its normal funding support from Eagle County this fiscal year.  The shortfall of $28,600 created a bit of a crisis for this organization, which works on a shoestring budget to provide food, clothing and shelter to many people with basic needs.  Mike Rushmore, founder of Our Community Foundation serving Eagle County and a new WCCF board member, brought the Salvation Army's situation to our attention.  In early August, we met with the Executive Director and board members of the Salvation Army to present them with a $25,000 grant to help them continue operating.

This grant funding comes from the Bruce Dixson Fund for Basic Needs. Mr. Dixson was always a believer in the Salvation Army, serving on the board of directors of the Mesa County's Salvation Army for 30+ years.  His charitable legacy fund that we manage provides operating support and funding for capital projects for organizations meeting basic needs and human services in the seven counties we serve.
Working with Affiliates

Many of our affiliates are either smaller community foundations that don't manage endowments or unincorporated local community groups with no 501c3 status.  WCCF serves as "endowment partner" for our affiliates - helping them market legacy funds and endowments to their community members who are considering a charitable legacy gift.  We provide sophisticated back-office services, including a large well-managed investment pool, fund accounting, grants and scholarship administration, and other donor services. We can manage complex assets like real estate and royalty interests.

 

Donors across our region appreciate the level of sophistication and professionalism our staff can offer them, which is very important when donors are considering estate gifts and a perpetual endowment.

 

For more information about the power of endowments, 

visit wc-cf.org/donors.

National-Standards-logo

 

The Western Colorado Community Foundation is confirmed in compliance with National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations by the Council on Foundations.

Remembering "Mr. History"
Patrick Gormley
(1930 - 2015)

 

 

Pat Gormley was one of those people who was incredibly rooted in his home community.  A third-generation Mesa County local, long-time community banker, actively involved in the rebirth of Downtown Grand Junction through the creation of the Downtown Development Authority and the Operation Foresight Main Street redevelopment project, Pat was the epitome of a community leader.

 

When WCCF celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2007, Pat was awarded the "Don't Have to Read the Sentinel Award" in recognition of his well-acknowledged ability to know everything going on in the community.  Many people regarded Pat as the unofficial historian of Mesa County, boasting membership and active involvement in our Museum of Western Colorado and the Mesa County Historical Society.  But Pat was equally forward-looking, involved in many important community institutions including St. Mary's Hospital Foundation and its Century Project, the Colorado Riverfront Commission and its trail system, and the renovation of the Avalon Theatre.

 

Pat's involvement with organized philanthropy was extraordinary.  A long-time friend of Herb Bacon, Pat served on the board of the Bacon Family Foundation for decades; he was the only non-family member to serve in that role for one of our community's most generous private foundations.  He was involved with St. Mary's Hospital Foundation and the Wayne Aspinall Foundation (providing scholarships for CMU), staying active on these boards until the end of his life. And Pat was a founder and original board member for our regional Community Foundation.

 

A historian through interest and study, Pat Gormley was also a futurist and community planner - using his business expertise, access to financing and community connections to make dozens of new projects happen.  His involvement with our start-up community foundation was just one of his many interests and projects.  Pat and his wife Ruth have an endowed donor-advised fund that will continue Pat's legacy of giving back to the community for generations to come.

 

 

 

Pat Gormley, right, with Lee Schmidt and Dale Hollingsworth, inspecting remodel plans for the Avalon back in 1995.  Always a proponent of Grand Junction's historic downtown district, Pat worked tirelessly on property management and projects like the Avalon Theatre renovation to bring people downtown.

New Affiliation with
Our Community Foundation serving Eagle County

Our regional Community Foundation is pleased to be partnering with a start-up community foundation.  The newly incorporated Our Community Foundation of Eagle County (OCF) is dedicated to strengthening all the nonprofits that provide services and improve the quality of life for the residents of these mountain communities.  OCF is working on several initiatives to coordinate services and increase nonprofit capacity, including organizing a community-wide approach to Colorado Gives Day to increase online donations for all nonprofits and applying for AmeriCorps volunteers for the nonprofit community.  

 

WCCF is working closely with OCF to identify needs and provide grants through our partnership (see related story in lefthand column).

 

WCCF is a regional organization that has many affiliations and strategic alliances in our region, including the 2 Rivers Community Foundation (Glenwood Springs), Rifle Community Foundation, the Mt. Callahan Community Fund benefitting Parachute and Battlement Mesa, the North Fork Heart and Soul Project and the Lake Fork Community Foundation in Hinsdale County.

 

We welcome our friends and colleagues in Eagle County into our new partnership and look forward to many years of promoting local philanthropy and strengthening our nonprofit organizations together.

Reflections from the
Executive Director

Many people don't know that I was living in Eagle County when I was hired to be WCCF's Executive Director fourteen years ago. Edwards, CO was the place I landed after moving to Colorado from the East Coast for my husband's job at the ski company.  With two young children at home, I was very involved with a group of nonprofits trying to start a community foundation for Eagle County.  That never really got off the ground.  Flash forward fourteen years, I am especially pleased to see that a new community foundation for Eagle County is now taking flight.  And I am thrilled that our regional organization can share our community foundation expertise, provide technical assistance and support their nonprofit capacity building and funding needs. It turns out that Pat and Ruth Gormley were also Eagle County residents - at least second home owners, with a vacation condo in Lionshead in the Town of Vail for a number of decades.  Just a small reminder that the counties of western Colorado we serve are inter-connected and helping each other out... over the years and across the miles.

 

Collaboration and community improvement is what our community foundations are all about.

 

- Anne Wenzel