Annual Report

We are pleased to provide the Gates Family Foundation’s 2016 Annual Report. The Annual Report is available exclusively in electronic format. 2016 was an extremely busy year, with the Foundation’s initiated grant making in priority areas expanding substantially. This report provides an overview of the Foundation’s activity during the past year, including grant, Program Related Investment, and mission investing highlights and a complete list of grant payments made during the year. The report also details the financial status of the Foundation.

Complete List of Grants Paid in 2016

Capital
Arts and Culture
$730,000
Alpine Rescue Team , Evergreen
$35,000

To support construction of the new Colorado Mountain Rescue History Center

Artspace Projects, Inc. , Loveland
$50,000

To support the renovation of the Feed and Grain building.

Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities , Arvada
$15,000

To support renovations to create a digital arts and multimedia studio and to upgrade classroom and studio spaces

Center for the Arts Evergreen, Inc. , Evergreen
$35,000

To support renovation of the Bergen Park Church into a new and expanded center for the arts

Central City Opera House Association , Denver
$20,000

To support rehabilitation of the historic Teller House

City of Leadville , Leadville
$40,000

To support purchase of the Tabor Opera House by the City of Leadville

Denver Museum of Nature and Science , Denver
$250,000

Final payment of a $500,000 commitment in memory of former trustee George Beardsley for use in the planning and execution of the Museum's Colorado Experience initiative

El Centro Su Teatro , Denver
$50,000

To support renovation and expansion of the theater

Friends of Levitt Pavilion , Denver
$125,000

To build a state of the art outdoor amphitheater/performing arts venue at Ruby Hill Park                                                                           

Governor's Residence Preservation Fund , Denver
$10,000

To support Eighth Avenue facade restoration project

United States Olympic Museum , Colorado Springs
$50,000

First payment of a $300,000 commitment to support construction of the U.S. Olympic Museum in Colorado Springs

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs , Colorado Springs
$50,000

Final payment of a $200,000 commitment to support construction of a Visual and Performing Arts Complex on the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs campus

Education
$918,000
Ability Connection Colorado Inc. , Aurora
$110,000

To support construction of an additional Creative Options for Early Education center

Academy for Advanced Learning , Aurora
$100,000

To support renovation of a facility for the new K-8 charter school in Aurora

Cal-Wood Education Center , Jamestown
$20,000

To support construction of Meckley Lodge

Denver Public Schools Foundation , Denver
$45,000

To support construction of the Girls Athletic Leadership School SmartLab

Family Star , Denver
$60,000

Final payment of a $160,000 commitment to support renovation of 929 29th St. for use by Family Star's Northeast Montessori program

Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government , Statewide
$83,000

To support leadership training for seven senior elected, appointed, and career state and local government officials from Colorado

I Have A Dream Foundation of Boulder County , Boulder
$25,000

To support renovation of the new headquarters building

Montessori del Mundo , Aurora
$80,000

To support school renovation

Poudre Learning Center , Greeley
$35,000

To support construction of the Poudre Learning Center

Pueblo School of the Arts and Sciences , Pueblo
$65,000

To support renovation of the former Fulton Heights School to accommodate a second Pueblo School of the Arts and Sciences in the Salt Creek neighborhood

Qualistar Early Learning , Statewide
$145,000

To support the Qualistar Colorado Capital Fund

Rocky Mountain Public Broadcasting Network/Channel 6 , Statewide
$70,000

To support the 2016-2017 season of the “PBS NewsHour”

Roots Elementary School , Denver
$40,000

Final payment of a $120,000 commitment to support the development of Phase I of a permanent school facility for the Roots Elementary School

TheBig Sandbox LLC , Denver
$40,000

To support upgrades and renovations of the Garden Place Academy Learning Landscape

Well-being of Children, Youth & Families
$1,339,300
Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Denver , Ward
$80,000

To support the Gates Camp

Denver Justice Council , Denver
$500,000

To support completion of the Rose Andom Center in honor of Diane Wallach's 30 years of service to the Gates Family Foundation

Easter Seals Colorado , Lakewood
$65,000

To support construction of an addition to the Easter Seals Colorado’s headquarters facility

Kids Aid , Grand Junction
$10,000

To support renovation of the newly acquired building as a new location for Kids Aid

Lewis-Arriola Community Center , Cortez
$50,000

To support exterior improvements to the community center

Bethel Community Center , Arriba
$21,300

To support the demolition of the current kitchen and construction of a new foundation

Colorado Health Network, Inc. , Denver
$40,000

To support renovation of the new Colorado Health Network building

Community Dental Clinic , Montrose
$60,000

To support renovation of the newly acquired building as a new location for The PIC Place, an integrated health clinic

Custer County Board of Commissioners , Wetmore
$50,000

To support renovation of the Wetmore Public Library and Community Center

Denver Santa Claus Shop, Inc. , Denver
$5,000

To purchase toys for low-income children

EarthLinks , Denver
$28,000

To support renovation of EarthLinks' new facility

Father Woody's Haven of Hope , Denver
$30,000

To support construction of the new Father Woody’s Haven of Hope building and renovations to the existing building

Haven House of Montrose Inc. , Olathe
$35,000

To support renovation of the Haven House

Lift-Up of Routt County , Steamboat Springs
$25,000

To support renovation of the new food bank and conversion of the existing space to expand the thrift store

OUR Center , Longmont
$75,000

To support construction of the new OUR Center facility

Phoenix Multisport, Inc. , Denver
$15,000

To support renovation of the new location for Phoenix Multisport

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, Inc. , Ft. Collins
$50,000

To support renovation of Planned Parenthood’s Fort Collins Health Center

Rocky Mountain Youth Corps , Steamboat Springs
$45,000

To support construction of the field operations and training center, and the renovation of the administration building

Sharing Ministries, Inc. , Montrose
$50,000

To support construction of the new building

Springs Rescue Mission , Colorado Springs
$50,000

To support Springs Rescue Mission campus expansion

Summit Community Care Clinic Inc. , Frisco
$25,000

To support expansion of the Summit Community Care Clinic’s dental facility

Westside CARES Inc. , Colorado Springs
$30,000

To support renovation of the new building,

Parks-Conservation-Recreation
$745,000
Partnership for Lake County Recreation , Leadville
$20,000

To support renovation and expansion of the play yard and outdoor community area at West Park Elementary

City and County of Denver , Denver
$80,000

To support the Re-Imagine Play project at Paco Sanchez Park

City of Fort Collins , Ft. Collins
$125,000

First payment of a $225,000 commitment to improve aquatic habitat and trail improvements on the Poudre River

Colorado Fourteeners Initiative , Statewide
$100,000

Final payment of a $150,000 commitment to complete work on five peaks

Colorado Trail Foundation , Poncha Springs
$25,000

To support construction of the field operations center

Denver Zoological Foundation , Denver
$200,000

Final payment of an $800,000 commitment to support the Toyota Elephant Passage

Georgetown Parks and Recreation Commission , Georgetown
$10,000

To support the completion of the Tom Bennhoff Lake Trail

Kim Equine Pavilion and Education Center , Kim
$50,000

To support Phase II of the Kim community room at the Mustang Pavilion and Education Center

Parks Improvement Advisory Board, Inc. , Grand Junction
$25,000

To support construction of the Las Colonias Park Amphitheater

Rocky Ford Swimming Pool Friends, Inc. , Rocky Ford
$20,000

To support the Rocky Ford Splash Pool

Town of Granby , Granby
$65,000

To support Phase I improvement of Rafferty Park

Two Peaks Fitness , La Veta
$25,000

To support renovation of the Two Peaks Fitness center

Community Development
$255,000
Bicycle Cooperative of Fort Collins, Inc. , Ft. Collins
$50,000

To support replacement of the roof and other renovations

Community Resource Center , Statewide
$20,000

To support Rural Philanthropy Days

Growing Gardens of Boulder County , Boulder
$20,000

To support completion of the Pollinator Pavilion

Kiowa County , Eads
$60,000

To support renovation of the historic Murdock Building

Our Hometown Charitable Foundation , Burlingtron
$50,000

To support renovation of the Midway Theater and Cultural Events Center

San Juan County Board of County Commissioners , Silverton
$35,000

To support renovation and restoration of the Miner’s Union Hospital building

We-Cycle , Basalt
$20,000

To support expansion of the WE-cycle bike share program to serve low-income residents in El Jebel and Basalt

Natural Resources
$327,000
Lake Fork Valley Conservancy , Lake City
$60,000

To support the purchase of riverfront land in order to create an open space park

Montezuma Land Conservancy , Dolores
$100,000

To support purchase of a conservation easement on the 960-acre Burke and Barnett Ranch

Palmer Land Trust , Canon City
$50,000

To support purchase of a conservation easement on Wilson Creek Ranch

Rocky Mountain Conservancy , Estes Park
$50,000

To support purchase of the Cascade Cottages and conveyance to the National Park Service

Yampa Valley Land Trust , Yampa
$67,000

Final payment of a $100,000 commitment to support the purchase of easements on the Glas Deffryn and the Iron Springs ranches

Initiated
Education
$3,187,766
A+ Colorado , Statewide
$50,000

First payment of a $125,000 commitment to support A+ Colorado's work

Achievement Network , Statewide
$80,000

To support the continued work of ANet in Denver Public Schools and other Colorado school districts and charters schools

Bellwether Education Partners Inc. , Statewide
$25,000

To convene an education governance summit to be held in New Orleans in March 2017

Catapult Leadership , Denver
$40,000

Final payment of a $80,000 commitment to support three school leaders in the Catapult Leadership Fellowship

Chalkbeat , Statewide
$50,000

Second payment of a $150,000 commitment to support the continued operation of Chalkbeat Colorado

Charter School Growth Fund , Statewide
$350,000

Final payment of a $850,000 commitment to support the development of additional high-performing charter management organizations in Colorado

Colorado Children's Campaign , Statewide
$50,000

Final payment of a $150,000 commitment to support the work of Colorado Children’s Campaign in education

Colorado Education Initiative , Statewide
$75,000

To support the launch of the 2Revolutions Colorado Spark project

Colorado Education Organizing Funder Collaborative (CEO) , Denver/Aurora
$60,000

To continue the Foundation’s participation in this collaborative, which invests in grassroots community organizing groups to engage in activities aimed at mobilizing parents and community members to act as agents of change in improving educational outcomes for low-income students

Colorado League of Charter Schools
$140,000
  • To support the launch of a Charter School Facility Fund, Denver (100,000)
  • Final payment of a $80,000 commitment to support the work of Colorado League of Charter Schools to advance the charter sector in Colorado, Statewide (40,000)
Compass Academy , Denver
$50,000

Final payment of a $100,000 commitment to support the development of a teacher residency program at Compass Academy and support the launch of Compass Academy

Crestone Charter School , Crestone
$30,000

Second payment of a $100,000 commitment to support Crestone Charter School’s transition toward a mastery-based academic model

Denver Public Schools Foundation , Denver
$40,000

To support the creation through replication of two new autonomous middle schools in DPS:  McAuliffe at Manual and Kepner Beacon

Education Pioneers, Inc. , Denver
$100,000

Final payment of a $300,000 commitment to support expansion in Denver

Education Reform Now , Statewide
$50,000

First payment of a $125,000 commitment to Education Reform Now Colorado to serve as a key partner in assessing the readiness of metro area and rural districts for education reform activity and to advance policies and practices that will support the development of more high-performing schools

Empower Schools, Inc. , Denver
$75,000

To expand work in Denver or other Colorado school districts

Foundations for Great Schools
$100,000

As a partner in Foundations for Great Schools, these Gates-initiated grants recognize, reward, and encourage outstanding success among public schools serving low-income families in Metro Denver. Amounts represent 20% of total award. Remainder provided by other partner foundations.

Aurora Academy, Inc., Aurora (3,000)
Bradley International School, Denver (6,000)
Brown International Academy, Denver (5,000)
CEC Middle School, Denver (8,000)
Cimarron Elementary School, Aurora (5,000)
Denver School of Science and Technology, Denver (15,000)
Girls Athletic Leadership School, Denver (7,000)
Gust Elementary School, Denver (6,000)
Hamilton Middle School, Denver (7,000)
KIPP Colorado Schools, Denver (12,000)
Rocky Mountain Preparatory School, Denver (6,000)
University Preparatory School, Denver (6,000)
Valdez Elementary School, Denver (6,000)
York International School, Denver (8,000)

Generation Teach , Denver
$25,000

To support the early teacher recruitment and training program for a diverse group of high school and college students and the 2017 Summer Academy

Girls Athletic Leadership School , Denver
$50,000

To support the development and expansion of the GALS high school

Innovation Zones Launch Across Colorado
$300,000

To support strategic partners working with Colorado schools to create Innovation Zones to improve academic performance of their low-income students

  • Achievement Network, Pueblo (100,000)
  • Education Reform Now, Denver (28,259)
  • Empower Schools, Inc., Denver (171,741)
Keystone Center , Statewide
$25,000

To facilitate and support Colorado Educator Preparation Innovation Coalition

KIPP Colorado Schools , Denver
$100,000
  • Second payment of a $225,000 commitment toward the expansion of the KIPP Colorado charter school network (75,000)
  • To support a KIPP parent organizing team to participate in Innovate Public Schools’ Parent Leadership Institute (25,000)
Lake County School District R-1 , Leadville
$102,766

To support strategic partners working with Lake County School District to improve academic performance of its low-income students

Make Your Mark , Denver
$25,000

To support Make Your Mark, teacher and school leader recruitment effort, in collaboration with the Denver Mayor, Denver Public Schools, charter management organizations and others

Mesa County Valley School District #51 , Grand Junction
$50,000

First payment of a $300,000 commitment to support strategic partners working with D51 to implement performance-based learning. 

Moonshot edVentures , Denver
$35,000

To support the launch of Moonshot edVentures in Denver to build a pipeline of diverse school leaders

Northwest Colorado BOCES , Steamboat Springs
$20,000

Final payment of a $65,000 commitment to support the Northwest Colorado Board of Cooperative Education Services’ System for Educator Effectiveness project in rural school districts in northwest Colorado

Open World Learning , Denver
$20,000

Final payment of a $60,000 commitment to support research and evaluation of the Open World Learning program at the middle school level

Progressive Policy Institute , Statewide
$5,000

To support a national convening in Denver focused on performance management of portfolio school districts

RISE Colorado , Aurora
$65,000

To support RISE Colorado in its efforts to educate and organize low-income parents in Aurora Public Schools, so they may better advocate for policy changes that will drive improved academic achievement for their children

Roots Elementary School , Denver
$80,000

First payment of a $160,000 commitment toward the refinement of Roots' school design and development of a toolkit that will more efficiently help others design similar innovative school models

St. Vrain Valley School District , Longmont
$50,000

To support the launch of the Pathways in Technology Early College High School in St. Vrain Valley School District

STRIVE Preparatory Schools , Denver
$440,000
  • Third payment of a $1,000,000 commitment to support implementation of the STRIVE growth plan (400,000)
  • To support Charter Management Organizations’ work to create better funding equity for charters in Denver (40,000)
Teach For America , Statewide
$275,000

Second payment of a $1,050,000 commitment to support Teach for America

Teach Plus Inc. , Statewide
$25,000

To support the launch of the Colorado Teaching Policy Fellowship

Valley Settlement Project , Carbondale
$130,000

Toward the expansion of Valley Settlement Project programs

Community Development
$1,026,000
B Lab Company , Denver
$20,000

First payment of a $40,000 commitment to launch the Best for Colorado challenge

Bicycle Colorado , Denver
$145,000
  • To support the Colorado Pedals project (10,000)
  • To support a coalition of multimodal advocacy organizations to work in partnership with the City toward increased funding for transportation infrastructure that is accessible to multiple modes (50,000)
  • Second payment of a $250,000 commitment to support the Colorado Pedals Project, with a required 2:1 match in 2016 and 2017 (85,000)
Colorado Preservation Inc. , Granada
$58,500

To support completion of Phase I reconstruction of the Amache historic site

Community Builders , Glenwood Springs
$144,000

For work with western slope communities on planning for and managing rapid growth and natural resource protection

Denver Housing Authority , Denver
$115,000

Final payment of a $160,000 commitment to support the West Denver Renaissance Coalition

Denver Urban Gardens , Denver
$65,000

Final payment of a $180,000 commitment to grow Denver Urban Gardens’ leadership and training capacity statewide

EcoDistricts , Statewide
$2,500

To support the EcoDistrict Summit held in Denver, Colorado

Groundwork Denver Inc. , Denver
$10,000

First payment of a $20,000 commitment to support urban agriculture and riparian restoration work

High Country News , Paonia
$50,000

First payment of a $150,000 commitment to support efforts by High Country News to expand and deepen engagement with a significantly expanded readership by investing in technology, social media promotion, and multi-media journalism

M12 Incorporated , Last Chance
$25,000

Second payment of a $75,000 commitment to expand the Action on the Plains program in Byers, Deer Trail, and Last Chance

Metro Denver Mobility Choice Blueprint
$75,000

First payment of a $150,000 commitment to support the Metro Denver Mobility Choice Blueprint

Mile High Connects , Denver
$75,000

First payment of a $150,000 commitment to support the transit equity and community development work of the MHC collaborative

National Trust for Historic Preservation , Las Animas
$39,500

To support development of an interpretive master plan for Boggsville, in partnership with the Bent County Pioneers Society and the National Park Service's Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance program

Re:Vision International , Denver
$25,000

To support technical assistance with business planning, fundraising capacity, and legal and accounting services needed to establish the Westwood Food Cooperative

Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Educational and Charitable Foundation , Statewide
$50,000

First payment of a $150,000 commitment to support the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Cooperative Development Center’s work on regional food hubs

San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition , Mosca
$20,000

To support the Valley Roots Food Hub in expanding markets, including a product exchange with Southwest Farm Fresh

Streetsblog Denver , Denver
$50,000

Final payment of a $100,000 commitment to support the launch of Streetsblog Denver

University of Colorado Denver , Statewide
$41,500

Final payment of a $98,000 commitment to the University of Colorado at Denver's College of Architecture and Planning to establish the Center for Sustainable Urbanism

Urban Land Conservancy , Denver
$15,000

To support a Community Land Trust Business Plan and Feasibility Study for the Globeville, Elyria, and Swansea neighborhoods of Denver

Natural Resources
$2,745,000
Colorado Cattlemen's Agricultural Land Trust , Byers
$50,000

To support CCALT’s efforts on The Bluffs project as a pilot effort to reconcile neglected easements

Colorado Open Lands , Statewide
$145,000
  • To support Colorado Open Land's merger with Legacy Land Trust and its work to explore best tools and techniques for land trust mergers and other sustainable service models for perpetual land conservation, of which up to $20,000 may be used toward the stewardship endowment and the balance will be used in capacity-building work (70,000)
  • To support a year-long land trust capacity problem-solving dialogue between funders and practitioners (75,000)
Groundwork Denver Inc. , Denver
$30,000

First payment of a $80,000 commitment to support urban agriculture and riparian restoration work

Mesa Land Trust , Grand Junction
$80,000

To support the Black Canyon Regional Land Trust’s work on a strategy for sustainability and stability, including a possible merger, as a case study for other land trusts in similar situations statewide.

Montezuma Land Conservancy , Cortez
$25,000

First payment of a $50,000 commitment to implement a Community Conservation Program

National Forest Foundation , Statewide
$150,000

First payment of a $225,000 commitment to support basic start-up staff capacity for the Find Your Fourteener program, as a model for stewardship at scale statewide

New Venture Fund , Statewide
$50,000

To support Phase II of Anne Castle’s work to advance the State Water Plan, in collaboration with the Colorado River Sustainability Campaign

Rio Grande Headwaters Focus Landscape
$280,000

A commitment of up to $1,000,000 to the Rio Grande Headwaters Land Trust (RiGHT) to support conservation in the San Luis Valley Focus Landscape, to be distributed over five years for landscape scale conservation work along the Rio Grande River and its tributaries

  • Dugan Ranch, (135,000)
  • Campbell Ranch, (75,000)
  • McDonald Ditch, (25,000)
  • Rainbow Trout Ranch, (25,000)
  • Operating Expenses, (20,000)
River Network , Statewide
$90,000

To support a two-year capacity-building and technical assistance project with local watershed groups and to advance the implementation of the State Water Plan

Roaring Fork Conservancy , Basalt
$25,000

To support the successful implementation of the Crystal River Management Plan

Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers , Basalt
$30,000

To support the development of Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers' Young Stewards Initiative

Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Educational and Charitable Foundation , Pueblo
$25,000

To support the Pueblo/Bessemer Ditch land use and water planning effort, pending commitments to fully fund the research project

Sonoran Institute , Statewide
$100,000

To support local government engagement in land use and water planning and practice over the coming two years, building on the curriculum developed by Western Resource Advocates

Southeast Colorado Focus Landscape and Heritage Tourism Partnership
$680,000

A commitment of up to $3,250,000 over seven years to support landscape scale conservation and heritage tourism development in southeast Colorado. Grants in 2016 included:

  • Colorado Cattlemen's Agricultural Land Trust, Otero (75,000)
    To protect the Edgar Ranch
  • The Nature Conservancy, La Junta (300,000)
    To purchase the Bow and Arrow Ranch
  • The Nature Conservancy, (160,000)
    To protect the Crystal Canyon Ranch
  • Palmer Land Trust (115,000)
    For conservation easements that include a municipal water lease option, to protect four farms owned by the Mendenhall family along the High Line Canal near Rocky Ford
  • Tamarisk Coalition, Grand Junction (30,000)
    First payment of a $90,000 commitment for Tamarisk Coalition’s work to address weed management in the Purgatoire watershed in the southeast Colorado Conservation Partnership region
Tamarisk Coalition , Grand Junction
$30,000

Final Payment of a $45,000 commitment to support development of the Cross-Watershed Network (XWN) in Colorado, including organization outreach, data development and website functionality

Trout Unlimited/Colorado Council , Del Norte
$60,000

Final payment of a $120,000 commitment to support the Rio Grande program

Trust For Public Land , Statewide
$100,000

To support detailed planning, pilot projects, and institutional development for the Metro Denver Nature Alliance in 2017 and 2018

Upper Colorado River Headwaters Focus Landscape
$495,000

A commitment of up to $2,032,000 over six years to support landscape scale conservation in Grand and Eagle counties along the upper Colorado River. Grantee is Colorado Open Lands, on behalf of Colorado Conservation Partnership (Colorado Open Lands, The Nature Conservancy, The Conservation Fund, Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust and The Trust for Public Land, with local partners Eagle County Open Space and the Colorado Headwaters Land Trust).  Projects in 2016 included:

Colorado Open Lands

  • General Operating (20,000)
  • Dewey Park Ranch (25,000)
  • Troublesome Ranch (50,000)
  • Yust Ranch Part II (400,000)
Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado , Statewide
$60,000

To support the development of a technical assistance toolkit and certification program with the goal of scaling stewardship statewide

Western Resource Advocates , Statewide
$140,000

To provide training to communities implementing water conservation efforts and to develop a set of tools that help identify and overcome barriers to new water-efficient land use and building patterns

Windward Fund - Water Funders Initiative , Statewide
$100,000

To support the development of new market-based tools (including impact investment structures) through pilot project development

Initiated Grant Commitments

The Gates Family Foundation has had a grant program combining both capital grants and initiated grant making in priority areas since the second half of 2011.  As of December 31, 2016, the Foundation had made initiated grant commitments of more than $34.9 million in the areas of K-12 Education, Natural Resources, Rural Communities and Community Development (urban and rural).  The Foundation has also made multiple Program Related Investment commitments and its first mission-related investments through the Foundation's investment portfolio during the same period.

Lift Up Routt County Food Bank
Girls Athletic Leadership School
Lake County High School
Colorado Preservation Inc. - Tabor Opera House
Rio Grand Headwaters Land Trust - McDonald Ditch
Rocky Mountian Youth Corps
Spring Institute - Spring Cafe
City of Ft. Collins - Poudre River
Bicycle Colorado