In Good Health

The Colorado Health Foundation’s blog is designed to share perspectives, personal stories and what we are learning in our efforts to ensure that, across Colorado, each of us can say: “We have all we need to live healthy lives.”

Sign up to receive In Good Health. 

In my nine years here, I’ve had several different jobs, including program officer and portfolio director. In those roles, I had the opportunity to see firsthand how this organization, and the field of philanthropy, have changed in a variety of ways. It’s been exciting, exhilarating and, yes, daunting at times. Now my job is to support a team of program officers who are actively leading an evolution of their own roles at the Foundation. They are “on the ground” in new ways and with a host of new responsibilities. From the Eastern Plains to mountain towns, from Denver neighborhoods to Alamosa county, our program officers are working more deeply with communities in order to realize our vision that across Colorado

Topics
Foundation Evolution
Vision

A couple months ago, I was in Colorado Springs on a road trip visiting in the community. I spent a few hours at the Sand Creek Library, where I had the great honor of taking over story hour for the local 4-year-olds. The educator in me delighted in it, sitting with a group of children whose only objective in that moment was to hear a good story. Likewise, I tried to simply enjoy their interest. I tried to not get too far ahead by asking their parents if health is in reach for their families – especially with the young children sitting before me.

Like our program officers at the Colorado Health Foundation, I’ve been hitting the road the last

Topics
Karen McNeil-Miller
Foundation Evolution
Holidays

Last year, the Foundation received a number of recommendations from the Center for Effective Philanthropy (CEP) that were designed to help us achieve greater impact with our grantmaking. CEP’s recommendations were part of a Grantee Perception Report that is an important data point as we work to increase our impact through grantmaking.

Many of the recommendations were aligned with changes that were underway, or being developed, by our leadership team. For example, the recommendations directed us as a staff and team to engage differently with the grantees we fund. They also called for us to build a much greater understanding of the fields and communities that grantees serve, work and live in. Finally, CEP recommended more robust communications – from

Topics
Foundation Evolution
Community Engagement
Karen McNeil-Miller

Yellowstone – the world’s first national park – is nestled atop an active volcanic hot spot. Covering nearly 3,500 square miles, the park’s lively landscape hosts more than 10,000 hydrothermal features, 500 active geysers and nearly 300 waterfalls. Its rivers, forests and canyons are home to hundreds of animal species. And today, it’s home to the northern Rocky Mountain wolf. 

A short video, “How Wolves Change Rivers,” describes the reintroduction of wolves in 1995 as a widespread trophic cascade. According to the Britannica Encyclopedia, a trophic cascade is an ecological phenomenon triggered by the addition or removal of top predators and involving reciprocal changes in the relative populations of predator and prey through a food chain, which often

Topics
Health Equity