The Summit Foundation strives to inspire donors, build partnerships and mobilize resources to support community organizations in Summit County (and the surrounding communities) that foster health & human service, education, art & culture, sports & recreation and environmental stewardship.


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Vail Resorts CEO Rob Katz donates $250,000 to The Summit Foundation

Vail Resorts CEO Rob Katz Contributes $1.6 Million to Local Community Non-Profits Supporting Children and Families

BROOMFIELD, Colo.—April 14, 2017—Vail Resorts, Inc. (NYSE: MTN) today announced that the Company’s CEO Rob Katz and his wife, Elana Amsterdam, cookbook author and founder of Elana’s Pantry, made personal contributions totaling $1.6 million to eight local non-profit organizations in the communities where the Company operates, including Eagle, Summit, Denver and Boulder counties in Colorado; Summit County in Utah; South Lake Tahoe in Nevada and North Lake Tahoe in California; the Resort Municipality of Whistler in British Columbia, Canada; and Lamoille County in Vermont. Each of the contributions will be directed toward programs that support children and families in these local communities or improving local recreation opportunities.

“The welfare of children and families in our local communities who are most vulnerable requires our attention and we feel fortunate to be able to support some outstanding non-profit organizations who work tirelessly to serve them,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. “We hope our contributions serve as a catalyst for others to join our efforts to help ensure the vibrancy of these incredible cities and towns.”

Today’s $1.6 million contribution builds on Katz and Amsterdam’s previous commitments to those who are most in need in the Company’s resort communities. In January 2016, the couple gave $1.5 million to the EpicPromise Foundation which provides emergency relief to Vail Resorts’ employees in need and last October, they donated $2 million to 12 local non-profits, funding programs for local youth and families, including basic needs, childcare and mental health. These contributions help augment the more than $9 million per year donated by Vail Resorts to non-profits across its mountain resorts.

Following are the eight non-profit organizations receiving funds from this gift and the impact that these funds will have on children and families in the local communities they serve.

$250,000 – Our Community Foundation in Eagle County, Colo.
In Eagle County today, two main barriers to access to quality childcare—cost and capacity—are leaving approximately 1,300 children ages five and under without licensed childcare. According to the Foundation, average childcare costs range from $9,600 for a four-year-old to more than $12,000 for an infant each year. This grant will provide childcare scholarships for Head Start families and long-term expansion of the childcare capacity in Eagle County. It also will help license 60 additional teachers in Eagle County. Combined with the scholarships, the grant will provide access to quality childcare for 420 more children in the county.

“We know from a large body of research the importance of the early years in setting a strong foundation for children’s future learning and success. The research also points to the importance of high-quality childcare professionals. Colorado Mountain College is eager to grow and develop the passions, confidence and professional skills for those who care for our children. We are thrilled to be a partner in growing early childhood professional development throughout Eagle County. Through the generosity of this gift from Rob and Elana, early childhood teachers win, families win and most of all, our children win,” said Kathryn Regjo, vice president of Colorado Mountain College Edwards Campus.

$250,000 – The Summit Foundation in Summit County, Colo.
This grant will benefit two programs through The Summit Foundation: Catch Afterschool and Mountain Futures Center. Catch Afterschool was established after a community call for afterschool care and today serves 250 children across the county. A collaborative effort of FIRC, the Keystone Science School, the Summit County School District and The Summit Foundation, the program is currently facing a $125,000 shortfall. This grant will provide instructor and program fees to ensure that 250 children will continue to have critical afterschool care for the next two years. The grant also will benefit the new Mountain Futures Center to ensure that 140 pre-collegiate students from Summit high schools and middle schools will have access to post-secondary education and the financial support to be successful in college.

“The Summit Foundation is honored to receive this generous donation and it will make a significant difference for the youth and working families of Summit County. The strong fabric of any community is the people who work there and who are able to live comfortably where they work. As a resort community, it is critical that we do everything we can to assist families with our high cost of living,” said Mark Spiers, president of The Summit Foundation. “This gift will help our community continue to work together to provide high-quality affordable afterschool care, as well as assist high school students with a financially viable path for a college and post-secondary education.”

$250,000 – Park City Community Foundation in Summit County, Utah
Mental health and substance abuse among youth has become a serious issue in many resort communities, including Summit County, Utah. With support from the Park City Town Council, the Summit County Government and in partnership with the Summit County School District and local mental health providers, the Park City Community Foundation is launching the “Communities that Care” program as part of a larger initiative focusing on mental health. This grant will support the development and implementation of intervention programs designed to prevent and treat mental health issues and is estimated to help more than 4,200 teens, grades six through 12, across three school districts in the county.

“Our community is poised to take action for better mental wellness among young people,” said Katie Wright, executive director of the Park City Community Foundation. “This gift is exactly what we needed to move quickly and create systemic, countywide sustained change that will benefit our youth for years to come.”

$250,000 – American Friends in the Resort Municipality of Whistler, British Columbia, Canada
This grant will support children of the Lil’wat and Squamish Nations by rebuilding a community school and launching a youth sports and mentoring program. Children of the Lil’wat Nation, ages four to eight years old, can learn the Lil’wat traditional language in the Ucwalmícwts Immersion Program at the Xit’olacw Community School. The school is housed in a very old building that is in a significant state of disrepair. The grant will support replacing the building with a log cabin structure that can be used as a traditional Ishkin (a dug out longhouse) with a classroom and kitchen.

There are currently no programs available to help provide leadership skills, a connection to the outdoors and sports and fitness for youth of the Squamish Nation. This grant also will help develop and launch a Squamish Nation sports and athlete development program, focusing on leadership skills through sports and providing insight into the traditions and culture of the Squamish Nation. Every youth in the Squamish Nation will be involved in the program.

“The proposed new building for the Xit’olacw Community School Language Immersion program will serve a great need in our community as the present building is very old with serious issues and urgently needs to be replaced. The new building will allow us to expand the program and will benefit approximately 30 students each year. The Immersion Ucwalmícwts program serves the community as one important aspect in revitalizing the language, which is crucial to retaining the culture and Lil’wat way of life,” said Verna Stage, Xit’olacw Community school administrator.

$125,000 – Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation in North Lake Tahoe, Calif.
This grant supports the development of the Wellness Program, a school-based program designed to improve the health and wellness of high school students, including targeting substance abuse and mental health issues. More than 400 students across the school district will be served through this program.

“Wellness services provide real-time support for youth facing the challenges of adolescence, which can be compounded living in a rural area. We are fortunate to have a school district and community-based organizations who are committed to providing holistic health services geared toward our youth,” said Alison Schwedner, director of the Community Collaborative of Tahoe Truckee.

$125,000 – South Lake Tahoe Family Resource Center in South Lake Tahoe, Nev.
There is currently no program available to ensure that kids and families, who rely on free and reduced lunch programs during the school year, have access to regular meals in the summer months. Through this grant, the South Lake Tahoe Family Resource Center, in partnership with the Lake Tahoe Unified School District and the El Dorado Food Bank, will be able to provide a summer food program for approximately 150 children in need over the next three years.

“The support from Rob and Elana means that this program will continue to feed disadvantaged children in the South Lake Tahoe community and we hope to grow the program to meet the needs of more children in the future,” said Bill Martinez of the South Lake Tahoe Family Resource Center.

$100,000 – Stowe Land Trust in Lamoille County, Vt.
Established in 1987, the Stowe Land Trust has protected nearly 3,500 acres of land in order to maintain public access for recreation, protect working farms and forests, and protect critical wildlife habitat for the benefit of the community and environment. Today, more than 80 percent of significant farm land and privately owned forest land are at risk of development. This grant will benefit two areas: First, it will permanently protect more than 350 acres of land for the benefit of the community, and second, it will enable approximately 800 youth to engage in volunteer conservation service and nature-based learning over the next two years.

“This contribution will help us advance two important initiatives in youth engagement and critical lands protection. With this gift, we can act quickly to permanently protect land that supports our farm, forest and recreation heritage while also continuing to involve Stowe kids in learning about nature and inspiring them to develop a conservation ethic,” said Caitrin Maloney, executive director of the Stowe Land Trust.

$250,000 – Rocky Mountain Greenway Project in the Front Range, Colo.
The Rocky Mountain Greenway Project is part of a statewide effort to promote outdoor recreation through a better system of networked trails, and specifically focuses on building and connecting trails from the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge all the way to Rocky Mountain National Park in Estes Park, Colo. This grant will be used as a challenge grant to raise the $1 million needed to complete the second segment of the project from Rocky Flats to Boulder.

“The Rocky Mountain Greenway Project will help connect Coloradoans to our state’s great outdoor playground, providing recreational opportunities for generations to come. We’re thankful for this gift from Rob and Elana which will help us complete a preeminent trail, from Rocky Flats to Rocky Mountain National Park, in our statewide network of trails,” said Colorado Lt. Governor Donna Lynne.

About Vail Resorts, Inc.
Vail Resorts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the leading global mountain resort operator. The Company’s subsidiaries operate ten world-class mountain resorts and three urban ski areas, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Perisher in Australia; Whistler Blackcomb in Canada; Afton Alps in Minnesota, Mt. Brighton in Michigan and Wilmot Mountain in Wisconsin. The Company owns and/or manages a collection of casually elegant hotels under the RockResorts brand, as well as the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyo. Vail Resorts Development Company is the real estate planning and development subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc. Vail Resorts is a publicly held company traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: MTN). The Vail Resorts company website is and consumer website is

Hosting Foundations of Evaluation Workshop Series

Location change:
Workshops will now be held at Beaver Run Resort in Breckenridge.

Building on the Culture of Impact series facilitated by Debbie Wilde in 2015, The Summit Foundation is bringing experts from Vantage Evaluation to help you enhance your organization’s evaluation process. Components of the free 3-part workshop series include:

* Designed for the seasoned evaluator or the organization just starting to consider evaluation
* Each workshop will build on the previous one, you can attend all or just one if that’s all your schedule allows
* A work session is part of each workshop to allow you time to implement what you leaned with support of Vantage Evaluation staff

All workshops will be held at the Beaver Run Resort in Breckenridge. Please register for one or all workshops by clicking the registration button below. You may send more than one representative from your organization as space permits. Details on what each workshop entails below.


Session 1: Crafting Key Evaluation Questions
Tuesday, May 16
1pm – 5pm

This session will focus on how to develop key evaluation questions. Key evaluation questions provide the focus for any evaluation by explicating the questions the evaluation seeks to answer. Participants will learn strategies for how to develop and prioritize key evaluation questions, how to word key evaluation questions, and how to ensure key stakeholders are engaged in the evaluation design. In addition, participants will learn how to use key evaluation questions to guide the selection of evaluation methods.

Session 2: Designing and Conducting Surveys for Evaluation
Thursday, June 29
9am – 5pm

This session will focus on designing and conducting surveys to answer one or more key evaluation questions. We will discuss the best circumstances to utilize surveys, possible question types, question wording and ordering strategies, survey logistics (e.g., sampling and distribution), and provide an introduction to basic quantitative data analysis.

Session 3: Designing and Conducting Qualitative Evaluations
Wednesday, August 16
9am – 5pm

This session will focus on designing and conducting focus groups and interviews to answer one or more key evaluation questions. We will discuss the best circumstances to utilize qualitative tools, possible question types, question wording and ordering strategies, facilitation and logistics, and provide an introduction to basic qualitative data analysis.


About the Facilitator

The series facilitator, Elena Harman, PhD. is the CEO and Lead Evaluator at Vantage Evaluation. Elena specializes in helping purpose driven organizations implement meaningful evaluation strategies that generate actionable information. Prior to launching Vantage Evaluation in 2013, Elena was an internal evaluator at the Colorado Health Foundation, where she helped launch the Foundation’s Measurable Results model, a nationally recognized approach to collective impact and shared measurement. Elena holds a B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences, from M.I.T. and a Ph.D. in Evaluation and Applied Research Methods from Claremont Graduate University.

Questions? Contact Program Officer Megan Nuttelman.

Contribute to Summit County Cares

Summit County Cares: working to raise $50,000 by December 31

Donate to the Summit County Cares fund

The Summit County Cares fund is the largest emergency assistance fund in the County. One hundred percent of the money raised through this campaign is used to pay rent, utility and medical bills for locals unable to provide the basic needs. Money is collected through The Summit Foundation and assists clients of Family & Intercultural Resource Center (FIRC), Advocates for Victims of Assault, Summit Community Care Clinic and Social Services.

Last year over 400 hundred locals were helped with these funds. Even though the economy is improving, the high cost of living makes Summit County a very difficult place to raise a family. Seasonal jobs make it challenging to establish savings and many families are one emergency away from not being able to afford the basic needs.

“Many Summit County families live paycheck to paycheck,” said FIRC Executive Director, Tamara Drangstveit. “If their child gets sick and they have to miss work or an unexpected medical bill arises, many of our neighbors are faced with difficult decisions on how to afford the basic needs.  Summit County Cares is vital to make sure that working class families can continue to be able to live and work here.”

Most of the families that receive assistance just need one-time financial support to get caught up on their bills and are often able to be stable again. This assistance plays a big role in the future success of that family and the overall vitality of our community. Eighty percent of the families that receive this assistance report improving from a crisis to a place of stability within six months of getting help.

This is the 8th year the local media has spearheaded this campaign. Always Mountain Time, Comcast Spotlight, Krystal 93 and Summit Daily News donate thousands of dollars of advertising to inform the community of the fundraiser and the challenges local families face. Several businesses including Bagalis, Blue River Bistro and The Boatyard are participating in Dine Out to Donate on December 10.  Father Dyer United Methodist Church is donating a portion of their Christmas Eve offering to support the cause. In addition, Breckenridge Restaurant Association’s Fall Dining Passport Sales will benefit the cause. These events

Donations are accepted year-round for Summit County Cares. This fundraiser’s success is essential to supporting our neighbors in need. Thank you to all who were able to give this past holiday season.

Donate to the Summit County Cares fund

When the unexpected happens, Summit County Cares is here to help.

For more information please contact Anita at 970-262-3888 ext. 306 or email [email protected]



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