Non-Profit in the Spotlight

Every month, Aspen Public Radio picks a non-profit in the Roaring Fork Valley that is focused on service and improving the community for all. Each week, you'll hear a different aspect of our Non-Profit in the Spotlight as they explain their mission, challenges, and successes.

Carbondale Arts Executive Director Amy Kimberly discusses the deep-rooted history of Carbondale Arts and how it has evolved from Carbondale's Mountain Fair into the multifaceted organization it is today. Board Chair Pam Rosenthal also contributes.

Jeffrey Gorsuch has been involved with the Aspen Education Foundation, or AEF, as both a member of the board and as a parent. Gorsuch discusses the future of AEF and their goals to build an Innovation Center and expand classroom space for the Aspen School District. AEF Executive Director Brooke Bedingfield also contributes.

Dr. Kathy Klug is the college counselor at Aspen School High. She discusses the importance of giving students options for life after high school. The Aspen Education Foundation (AEF) funds the college counseling program at Aspen High School, and as a result of the program's success, dedicated college counseling programs are appearing in schools throughout the Roaring Fork Valley.

Brooke Bedingfield is the Executive Director of the Aspen Education Foundation. She discusses the programs and positions the organization helps fund in the Aspen School District. Dr. Kathy Klug also contributes.

Raifie Bass, Chair of the Aspen Education Foundation (AEF) Board, shares the history and importance of the organization. Going on 25 years, AEF has given over $11 million to the Aspen School District, which is comprised of Aspen Elementary School, Aspen Middle School, Aspen High School, Aspen Community School, and Aspen Cottage Preschool. Dr. Kathy Klug also contributes.

Aspen TREE Co-Directors Eden Vardy and River Morgan share their vision for Aspen TREE in the coming years, and discuss the power of thinking positively about environmentalism. The organization has ambitious plans for growth and expansion, which includes a model for up-and-coming farmers.

Aspen TREE Founder and Co-Director Eden Vardy discusses Aspen TREE's signature event, the Farm to Table Community Meal, a free meal served the week of Thanksgiving and made entirely from local ingredients. Board members Michael Miracle and Jeff Davlyn discuss the importance of Aspen TREE in the community and their role in educating the Valley about local and sustainable food. Learn more about Aspen TREE and their events at www.aspen-tree.org .

Co-Directors River Morgan and Eden Vardy share Aspen TREE's formal and informal programs, which range from Earth Keepers summer day-camp to self-guided tours of the FarmPark, located at Cozy Point Ranch outside of Aspen. Board Vice President Michael Miracle also contributes.

Aspen TREE Co-Directors Eden Vardy and River Morgan share the history of the organization and the inspiration behind the work of Aspen TREE. Vardy became inspired after taking an Environmental Literacy class at Aspen High School, which would lead him to pursue his undergraduate and graduate degrees focused on positive environmentalism.

Sloan Shoemaker, Executive Director of Wilderness Workshop, and Will Roush, Conservation Director of Wilderness Workshop, discuss the organization's role in conserving and protecting public lands today and what the future holds. Challenges include overpopulation and climate change, but the Workshop remains optimistic. Visit www.WildernessWorkshop.org for more information and links to events and membership.

Wilderness Workshop Conservation Director Will Roush outlines the two guiding principles the organization uses to conduct their work in protecting the lands of the White River National Forest and surrounding areas. Peter Hart, Conservation Analyst and Staff Attorney, also contributes to the conversation. Roush and Hart discuss the Thompson Divide and the BLM's decision to cancel 25 oil and gas leases on the Divide, and the organization's work in forest restoration and water. Visit www...

Rebecca Mirsky is the Development Director at Wilderness Workshop, and oversees the Artist in Wilderness Program. The program invites artists for a one-week residency in the Aspen area, where they create art inspired by the places that Wilderness Workshop is working to protect. Mirsky also discusses the organization's summer guided hike series, local lecture series, and volunteer opportunities. Visit www.WildneressWorkshop.org to find a full listing of events and volunteer opportunities....

In 1967 three local Aspen women, Joy Caudill, Dottie Fox, and Connie Harvey, came together with two goals: 1. to designate the Hunter-Fryingpan Wilderness and Collegiate Peaks areas as wilderness, and 2. to double the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area. Sloan Shoemaker is the Executive Director of Wilderness Workshop and shares the organization's history and it's role in land protection and conservation today. He shares some of his favorite stories from the past including a media stunt...

Mike Pritchard, Executive Director of the Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association, RFMBA, shares the organization's recent success with trail systems in New Castle, and the organization's future goals and trail projects. Adam Cornely of New Castle Trails and Charlie Eckart, RFMBA Board President, also contribute. Learn more about RFMBA and how you can get involved at www.RFMBA.org , and visit the New Castle Trails Facebook page for volunteer opportunities and trail updates. Regional rides and...

Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association (RFMBA) Board Chair Charlie Eckart and Executive Director Mike Pritchard explain how the organization balances their mission of maintaining and creating the best mountain bike trails in the Roaring Fork Valley with multiple local, state, and federal regulatory agencies, as well as concerns of sustainability and equitable access. Also, Jim Neu of Glenwood Springs started the Two Rivers Trails, who shares his work with RFMBA to advocate for the...

Roaring Fork Mountain Association, or RFMBA, Executive Director Mike Pritchard shares the organization's trail projects and how they benefit more than just mountain bikers in the Roaring Fork Valley. RFMBA Board Vice President, Todd Fugate, also contributes. Visit www.RFMBA.org to learn more about the Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association and past, current , and future trail building projects. Governor John Hickenlooper discusses the importance of Colorado's outdoor recreation industry and...

Mike Pritchard is the Executive Director of the Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association, or RFMBA . He discusses the organization's beginnings with chairman of the RFMBA board, Charlie Eckart. RFMBA is a member of the International Mountain Bicycling Association, or IMBA. To learn more about RFMBA and what it means to be a member of the IMBA, visit www.RFMBA.org .

Spellbinders Executive Director Catherine Scales Johnson discusses the impact of Spellbinders on the students in schools throughout the Roaring Fork Valley and the future of the volunteer-based organization. 5th grade Aspen Middle School teacher Amy Gray also contributes to the importance of the program in the classroom. Roaring Fork Valley Spellbinders Chapter leader, Annie Sinton, also can be heard telling the story of a dog and a mountain lion from a storytelling event at Explore...

Amy Gray is a 5th grade teacher at Aspen Middle School. Every month, her class is visited by a special guest, Adelaide Waters, a volunteer storyteller for Spellbinders. Waters has a new story to tell the students every month, and as Gray explains, the students are captured by each and every story. Gray shares the importance of oral storytelling for her students and the value the program brings to her classroom. Spellbinders Executive Director, Catherine Scales Johnson also contributes. Learn...

Catherine Scales-Johnson is the Executive Director of Spellbinders, an organization that is best known for its in-school storytelling program. Told by volunteers, the stories span from folk tales and personal stories to historical fiction. All volunteers must go through a 14-hour training and continue to have regular meetings with other volunteers. Volunteer teller, Adelaide Waters, shares her personal experience with Spellbinders and the inspiration for her own stories. The Spellbinders...

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