Matchmakers.

About Us

We create powerful community partners

The Community Foundation serving Southwest Colorado facilitates the growth and effectiveness of philanthropic contributions and expands the culture of giving to meet the needs of our communities.

The Community Foundation serving Southwest Colorado inspires hope, leadership, and generosity in the region by bringing economic stability, professional development, and collaboration to the nonprofit sector.

As a community facilitator, the Community Foundation works to increase efficiency, resiliency, and success for nonprofits, while maximizing effective grantmaking for philanthropists, to make Southwest Colorado a better place to live. In 2021, the Community Foundation infused $5.3 million into the region. We invite you to create, grow and give funds through our careful management.

What is a Community Foundation?

WHAT IS A COMMUNITY FOUNDATION?

The concept of a Community Foundation is as ingenious as it is simple – it is a means to build, over time, substantial funds for the community through contributions. The Community Foundation is a hybrid. Unlike our cousin, the private foundation (whose financial base typically comes from a single donor, family or company), the Community Foundation garners its support from the public. It grows because individuals, corporations, other nonprofits and even government entities believe in it.

The Community Foundation is unlike other nonprofits that focus on specific areas of interest, such as health care, disaster relief and the arts, or specific causes such as poverty, heart disease and classical music.

The Community Foundation looks to the well-being of the total community, not just a part of it.

ANNUAL REPORTS, FINANCIAL DOCUMENTS & GOVERNANCE

2022 Annual Report

2021 Annual Report

2020 Annual report

HISTORY

During the mid-1990s, individuals involved with several nonprofit organizations in Southwest Colorado had become aware that the “traditional” forms of funding on which they relied to support their various causes were becoming strained. Federal and State governments had reduced or eliminated funding for many programs local community members needed and desired, and local businesses and citizens were growing weary of being asked to contribute to numerous community fundraisers. Many of these organizations were successfully generating some revenue through fundraisers, but their efforts to do so were requiring a larger amount of staff time than they could commit – and they were still struggling to pay the bills. Therefore, the concept of the Community Foundation was introduced to the local community. Nonprofit professionals were encouraged to learn that donors of large gifts are often more willing to contribute to a foundation that is developed primarily to ensure that community assets are managed according to donor wishes and invested to maximize their earnings potential than they are to donate directly to a nonprofit organization which could experience frequent changes in management and board governance.

In the fall of 1997, various avenues for creating or joining an existing community foundation were researched. After many long discussions and public meetings, the decision was made to create the Community Foundation serving Southwest Colorado as a Colorado 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Currently, the Community Foundation serving Southwest Colorado manages more than $10 million.

Who We Serve

The Community Foundation serving Southwest Colorado serves five counties, each with their own needs and unique services to offer. Learn more about these counties by clicking on the images below.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

President

JOHN ARMS

John is an experienced investor with more than 25 years of experience in capital investments in land, minerals and energy.

John Arms is an experienced investor with more than 25 years of experience in capital investments in land, minerals and energy. Having worked for several large public and private companies in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, John worked with acquisition analysis and mergers totaling over $7 billion in his career. He has a technical background in engineering and has managed budgets, personnel and human resources. He has volunteered for the local school district, Habitat for Humanities, and as a Board Member for his local Temple. His family recently moved to Durango after falling in love with southwest Colorado. The family has spent many years vacationing and working in the area. John joined the Community Foundation of Southwest Colorado to give back to his community and to support local nonprofits with direct impact for the residents of Southwest Colorado. He, his wife and four children enjoy the outdoors and the all the tangible benefits of Colorado living.
Vice President

MOLLY MARTIN

Molly Martin has lived in Durango since the early ‘90s with her husband, Gregg. They raised their two children, Brigid and Dennis, here.

Molly Martin has lived in Durango since the early ‘90s with her husband, Gregg. They raised their two children, Brigid and Dennis, here. After their children moved away for many years, both are now back raising their own children here. Molly and Gregg have five grandchildren living in La Plata County and couldn’t feel more blessed. “We all feel incredibly lucky to live here and feel the importance of giving back where we live,” says Molly. She has worked in nonprofits locally as a volunteer, executive director, and board member. She believes the nonprofits in our region are one of the many reasons our communities are so special.
Secretary

MARTHA MINOT

Martha has lived in Durango for almost forty years. She previously worked as an attorney in private practice for twelve years and then served as the La Plata County Court Judge for 22 years.

Martha has lived in Durango for almost forty years. She previously worked as an attorney in private practice for twelve years and then served as the La Plata County Court Judge for 22 years. She has volunteered for numerous organizations in Durango, helping to write the bylaws for the Family Center of Durango, serving as a board member and past president of Alternative Horizons. In addition, she has served as a board member for the Adult Education Center, a hospice volunteer, and numerous volunteer positions with the Southwest Colorado Bar Association and the County Court Judges Association, and the Judicial Department. She was a board member on the Judicial Discipline Commission for twelve years and the chair for three years. Martha believes strongly in the importance of community service the support of non-profit organizations and is excited to join The Community Foundation.
Treasurer

AMY MOODY

Amy is the finance manager at Hillcrest Golf Club. She is originally from Albuquerque and is a Fort Lewis alumna.

Amy Moody is the finance manager at Hillcrest Golf Club. She is originally from Albuquerque and is a Fort Lewis alumna. She left Durango after graduation and returned to Durango in 2000. After a long and rewarding career in accounting as a certified public accountant, financial analyst, and corporate controller, Amy temporarily retired in 2016, until she joined the team at Hillcrest in December 2019. She joined the finance committee of the Community Foundation in April 2018 and was happy to join the Board when asked. Amy is proud to help the Community Foundation, which provides so much help for the community she lives in. She enjoys many activities in the outdoors year-round, including golfing, hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, alpine and Nordic skiing, paddle boarding and scuba diving. Amy is a long-time photo hobbyist and an accredited Tai Chi Chih instructor.
Board Member

HOLLY ASHER

Holly Asher moved to Durango to join her husband Edward after they purchased a local home building company in 2020.

Holly Asher moved to Durango to join her husband Edward after they purchased a local home building company in 2020. Holly practiced antitrust law in Washington D.C. at Arnold & Porter for ten years before she moved to New York and “retired” to raise her four children. Holly has always been active in her local community, including volunteering as a Court Appointed Special Advocate, serving on several boards, and assisting students as a writing tutor at Westchester Community College. Since moving to Colorado, Holly has obtained her real estate license. Holly and Ed enjoy spending time with their combined six children and their Berne doodle, Teddy. They love to travel, especially to ski and scuba dive. Holly looks forward to working with the Community Foundation to help improve the lives of people in the local community.
Board Member

NICOLE BONN

Nicole looks forward to the contributions The Community Foundation can provide to Southwest Colorado.

Nicole Bonn headed west after growing up the Chicago area to attend Northern Arizona University. While her devotion to the greater community began in Flagstaff, she carried that passion with her to Durango 13 years ago. Trained as a paralegal, she joined Osprey Packs in 2014 working to grow the company and support its leadership team in all aspects of the business. She volunteers in a variety of settings in Durango —from assisting children’s ski programs to coaching elementary and middle school soccer. Nicole and her significant other, Matt, along with four-legged friend Duke, enjoy skiing, rafting, mountain biking, camping and enjoying friends. They both are proud to call Southwest Colorado their home. Nicole looks forward to the contributions The Community Foundation can provide to Southwest Colorado.
Board Member

KIM EISNER

Kim is a designer with Elevation Custom Builders, working in the residential and commercial construction industry throughout the Southwest for over 30 years.

Kim is a designer with Elevation Custom Builders, working in the residential and commercial construction industry throughout the Southwest for over 30 years. Originally from the Chicagoland area, she moved to Colorado to attend college on the front range receiving both fine art and art education degrees. She has served on the local School Board while passionately supporting arts education. Kim feels fortunate to have raised her two sons, own a business, and live in this beautiful corner of Colorado. She looks forward to being part of the Community Foundation Board supporting the mission of so many nonprofits, believing our unique community is enhanced by the generous philanthropy the Foundation manages, administers, and infuses into Southwest Colorado.
Board Member

LAURIE MEININGER

Laurie Meininger spent nearly thirty years living and working abroad as a diplomat in countries as diverse as Iraq, Romania, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Laurie Meininger spent nearly thirty years living and working abroad as a diplomat in countries as diverse as Iraq, Romania, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Her true love and passion are inspiring people to achieve their potential and their dreams. Laurie knows firsthand the power of community members working together and is a firm believer in passionate service with integrity. She is excited to be part of the Community Foundation where the strength of SW Colorado is amplified through investing in our local community nonprofits. Laurie is a volunteer with the League of Women Voters, a member of the City of Durango Board of Ethics, and a teacher about plants and pollinators through the Master Gardener program. In her spare time, Laurie is trying her hand at improv comedy and loves traveling to the ocean as often as possible, ideally with one or both of her grandchildren along for the adventure.
Board Member

CHERYL NIXON

Cheryl serves as provost at Fort Lewis College, bringing a commitment to shared governance and transparency to her work with Academic Affairs leadership.

Cheryl Nixon serves as provost at Fort Lewis College, bringing a commitment to shared governance and transparency to her work with Academic Affairs leadership to implement student-centered strategies, launch new programs, and continue to build FLC’s academic reputation. Nixon earned her bachelor’s in English and political science from Tufts University and her master’s and doctorate in English from Harvard University. Prior to her role at FLC, she was an Associate Provost and Professor of English at UMass. She served as Chair of the Department of English for five years and English Graduate Program Director for three years. The author of books, articles, and textbooks, her research examines the invention of the novel in the eighteenth century, comparing literature to legal cases featuring family conflict.
Board Member

TRENT PORTER

Trent is a Certified Financial Planner, a CPA and the founder and president of Priority Financial Partners, a local wealth management firm.

Trent Porter was born and raised in Southwest Colorado and lives in Durango with his wife and two boys. His strong roots in the community and passion for giving back and helping others do the same, makes the Community Foundation a perfect fit. His other passions include spending time with his family, vinyl records, hiking 14'ers and playing the guitar.
Trent is a Certified Financial Planner, a CPA and the founder and president of Priority Financial Partners, a local wealth management firm. He is frequently sought out by the national media for his financial expertise, such as a column in the Wall Street Journal, co-hosting the Your Money show on Sirius XM radio, interviews on NPR's Morning Edition and All Things Considered.
Board Member

KAREN THOMPSON

Bio Coming Soon!

STAFF

Executive Director

BRIGGEN WRINKLE

Briggen focuses on increasing generosity in our community by matching philanthropists with nonprofits that meet their strategic giving goals.

Briggen Wrinkle is the Executive Director of the Community Foundation serving SW Colorado. She focuses on helping our funding partners maximize strategic lifetime investments, now and into the future. In addition, she concentrates on bringing professional development, capacity-building opportunities and new grant prospects to nonprofits.
Briggen moved to Durango in 2003 with 2 ½ year old twins. In 2005, she had another set of twins. She is very active in her children’s education and with the 9-R school district as a whole. She enjoys hiking, biking and watching her kids grow up in this amazing corner of the world.
Deputy Director

TRACY POPE

Tracy spearheads efforts in programmatic grant management, nonprofit support, and marketing.

Tracy Pope is the Deputy Director of the Community Foundation. Tracy has lived in Durango for more than 25 years and has been actively involved in many nonprofits in our area. She holds bachelor’s degrees in journalism and economics, with a background in communications and management. Tracy enjoys the opportunity to serve the nonprofit sector of Southwest Colorado in this role, expanding the culture of giving to meet the needs of our community.
She and her husband, Matt, have raised three children in Durango and are grateful for the many blessings Southwest Colorado has offered their family.
Finance & Operations Director

BRIAN GINNA

Brian Ginna oversees the Community Foundation's financial, investment, operational, and administrative needs.

Brian Ginna oversees the Community Foundation's financial, investment, operational, and administrative needs. He helps advise strategic direction, ensures fiscal accuracy, and works closely with donors and investors to facilitate the Community Foundation's goals and objectives. Brian brings to the table extensive experience raising and administering funds, investment banking, equipment leasing, and broker/dealer operations. He and his family have been long-time advocates and volunteers to ensure all have access to athletic and outdoor activities, regardless of need. Brian moved to Durango in 2021 with his wife, daughter, son, and two golden retrievers, while his eldest son attends Colorado State University in Fort Collins.

Brian is currently a Director for the La Plata County Humane Society board.

Brian loves skiing, hiking, music, and working on the family's Durango property.

Community Outreach Manager

JOSEPH KUZMA

Joseph is responsible for the planning, development, and implementation of the Community Foundation’s marketing strategies and public relations activities, both external and internal.

Joseph Kuzma is responsible for the planning, development, and implementation of the Community Foundation’s marketing strategies and public relations activities, both external and internal. In addition to planning the Foundation’s events, which include Durango Wine Experience, Making a Difference Speaker Series, concert series, nonprofit professional development, and more. He reports to the Deputy Director and other staff in charting the direction of the Foundation’s marketing/communications/public relations function and ensuring its effective operation.

Joseph grew up in Michigan before moving to Washington to begin his journey in the business management and marketing sectors. During that time, he was introduced to the local chamber of commerce and young professional groups and found a passion for volunteering. He further developed these interests when he moved to Florida by becoming a board member and president for several young professional groups and being active in the leadership programs in the area. He created a videography company with his best friend that connected him extensively within his community.

Four years ago, Joseph relocated to Southwest Colorado, where he married and settled near Durango, CO, with his wife and multiple fur babies. He is currently the Vice President of the board for the Young Professionals of Durango - YPOD's and sits on the Durango Chamber of Commerce board. He and his wife co-own Blue Lily Productions LLC and are actively involved in youth ministry and are passionate about sharing the Love of the Creator.

He enjoys gardening, camping, reading, biking, videography and volunteering his time in a myriad of ways. He looks forward to championing the values and goals of the Community Foundation.

Bookkeeper & Administrative Assistant

ALISON SMITH

Alison is the Bookkeeper & Administrative Assistant of the Community Foundation and works with the Foundation's fiscal projects.

Alison is the Bookkeeper & Administrative Assistant of the Community Foundation and works with the Foundation's fiscal projects. She is a graduate of Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO with a bachelor's degree in social work (BSW) and minor in Spanish. She has another bachelor's degree in value chain management from VIA University in Horsens, Denmark. The combination of the two degrees creates a unique blend of being able to empathize and relate to people, alongside an understanding of how business practices are linked to methods. She uses the intersection of these skills to add value and meet organizational goals.

Alison was born in Durango and is a graduate of Durango High School. She has also lived abroad, first as a foreign exchange student in Guaranda, Ecuador, during her junior year of high school. Then in Roatan, Honduras, as a scuba instructor, post college. And most recently, in Fredericia, Denmark, for 10 years, in her husband’s native country.

She and her family, which now includes two very active young daughters, relocated from Denmark back to Durango a few years ago. They recently hosted a foreign exchange student from Thailand. They enjoy the recreational activities of this amazing Southwest area. In addition, Alison is talented with knitting, floral arranging, carpentry, and woodworking.

She is looking forward to learning from the professionals involved with the Community Foundation, growing and contributing to the community through their work.

Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.

Helen Keller

News & Updates

February 6, 2023 in News

A Taste of the Nonprofit Sector – NPO Grant Application Now Open

New this year – we are adding a nonprofit grant component to the Community Foundation’s largest fundraiser, the Durango Wine Experience. In addition to a taste of wine, we’d like to…
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January 4, 2023 in News

Saying Goodbye to the Community Concerts in the Secret Garden

As the proverb goes... all good things must come to an end. After eight fun-filled, successful years, we have decided not to host the Community Concerts in the Secret Garden…
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December 14, 2022 in News

SWCOGives.org – Record-Breaking Year Results – $626,641 in donations in Southwest Colorado

The Community Foundation serving Southwest Colorado spearheads regional participation in Colorado Gives Day -- an easy, online initiative for donors to contribute to nonprofits across Colorado. This year’s Colorado Gives…
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