ULC Recognizes Gary Community Investments for its Support

Urban Land Conservancy (ULC) featured Gary Community Investments and The Piton Foundation in its November "Partner Spotlight."

Piton helped found ULC in 2003, and, since then, ULC has grown from a $10 million organization to almost $70 million through real estate investments that directly benefit neighborhoods and communities. As a strong partner, GCI continues working with ULC in making strategic investments to support the preservation and development of real estate in vulnerable and transitioning neighborhoods.

Urban Land Conservancy (ULC) celebrates the achievements of its partnerships that create and preserve nonprofit facilities and affordable housing for communities in metro Denver. ULC's Monthly Partner Spotlight is awarded to partners who demonstrate the value of collaboration, furthering ULC's mission to improve the lives of Denver area residents through its real estate investments and community assets.

To read the entire article, click here.

The Colorado Children’s Campaign Celebrates 30 Years

Our longtime partner, the Colorado Children’s Campaign, recently celebrated its 30th anniversary at its annual luncheon, which brought together hundreds of influential community leaders to explore pressing issues facing Colorado’s kids. At the luncheon, Governor John Hickenlooper recognized the Children’s Campaign for its three decades of shining a light on areas where Colorado could do better. “The Children’s Campaign’s focus on child poverty, achievement gaps and disparities in opportunity for Colorado kids has been a catalyst of meaningful change,” Governor John Hickenlooper said.

During the event, Gov. Hickenlooper and Children’s Campaign CEO Chris Watney honored Children’s Campaign founders Sam and Nancy Gary, Elaine and Dr. Steve Berman, Anna Jo Haynes, Dr. Paul Melinkovich and Barbara O’Brien for their role in laying the groundwork for a non-partisan advocacy and research organization dedicated to improving the well-being of Colorado children. Watch this video to see how what started as an idea has grown into a movement to ensure every chance for every child in the state.

Read the Latest EITC News

As part of The Piton Foundation's Tax Credits for Working Families Public Information Campaign, we distribute EITC News, a monthly electronic newsletter that provides information about the Earned Income Tax Credit and free tax preparation assistance. 

We invite you to read November's EITC News, which includes updates and information on our outreach campaign, the new state EITC, Tax Help Colorado's free tax assistance sites, and the Affordable Care Act and tax time. To read our e-newsletter, click here

Sign up here to receive EITC News updates from November through April. 

Save the Date: Mile High Data Day

In today's open data culture, we have the ability to use data to tell stories, collaborate across organizations, and make data informed decisions that have the power to improve the lives of others. The Piton Foundation's Data Initiative invites you to learn how to combine these elements and use open data to drive social change at the first annual Mile High Data Day on February 19 at the University of Colorado Denver. Join the Denver metro region's data community as we share best practices and strengthen our region's data culture.

Mile High Data Day attendees will have the opportunity to:

  • Build relationships, share best practices and learn from experts.

  • Strengthen partnerships between social change and data organizations.

  • Create a vision for an ongoing network focused on using data to support community change.

The event will include speakers, panels and interactive breakout sessions. Mile High Data Day’s keynote is Steve Spiker, Director or Research & Technology at the Urban Strategies Council. Steve is the co-founder of OpenOakland, a civic innovation organization helping government become more transparent and engaged. He speaks nationally about data driven decision making and was chosen as one of Next American City’s Vanguard class of 2012 and honored as a White House Champion of Change in 2013.

Please check back in early January for registration details and the day’s full agenda.

Mile High Data Day’s key partners include:

Bruce Hoyt Named Senior Vice President, Investments

Gary Community Investments, which includes The Piton Foundation, announced today that Bruce Hoyt has been named Senior Vice President, Investments. In this role, Hoyt will lead and manage the organization’s for-profit and philanthropic investment strategies, helping to advance its mission of improving the lives of Colorado’s low-income children and their families. 

For nearly four decades, Hoyt has been dually committed to careers in investment banking and community volunteerism. Most recently, he served as a Managing Director with KPMG Corporate Finance in Denver, where he specialized in mergers and acquisitions. He was a co-founder of the investment banking firm St. Charles Capital, which was sold to KPMG in 2014. In addition, he has experience working with Boettcher and Company, Great West-Life and The Wallach Company. 

Hoyt currently serves as the board co-chair for Colorado Succeeds, and he serves on the boards of the Data Quality Campaign and the Colorado Zoological Trust. He served eight years on the Denver Public School board and has also served on the boards of The Denver Public Schools Foundation, Mile High Montessori, Friends of Manual High School, and Mile High United Way. He has served on several task forces related to early childhood education and was a member of Governor Hickenlooper’s transition team on education.

“We are very excited to have Bruce join our team,” says David J. Younggren, President of Gary Community Investments and The Piton Foundation. “His extensive business and leadership experience, coupled with a long history of serving on numerous community boards and other significant civic involvement, will be of tremendous value in helping us execute on our strategies to improve outcomes for Colorado's low-income children and their families.”

Hoyt, who is a Colorado native, received his Master of Management from Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. He earned his undergraduate degree in Political Science from Northwestern University.

Click here to read a short Q&A with Bruce on his new role. 

Reflecting on Stapleton's Development

The Front Porch recently released its October issue, which celebrates the 20th anniversary of the Stapleton Development Plan, commonly known as “The Green Book.” Because of his vision for Stapleton as a mixed-use community that broke the pattern of urban sprawl, our founder, Sam Gary, is recognized for his passionate leadership of the project, which is described as “the second of three pillars that undergird the Green Book.”

Sam understood that the support of civic leaders was essential to making the visionary Stapleton redevelopment happen. He rallied these leaders behind the idea and created the Stapleton Redevelopment Foundation, which raised $2 million to both create the written plan and nurture a process that would lead to its approval by the Denver City Council.  Read the full article here.

To learn more about the evolution of the first, and largest, greenbuilt planned community the United States, read Stapleton: An Oral History, which is available from the Stapleton Foundation.

Explore Our New Interactive Timeline

Gary Community Investments partnered with Open Media Foundation to create an interactive timeline for our website that details the history of our founder, Sam Gary's, business and philanthropic endeavors. This timeline attempts to show how Mr. Gary's longtime vision has driven us to become the unique organization we are today--one that combines business and philanthropy to improve the lives of children and families in Colorado.

CO Child Care Contribution Tax Credit

As part of our efforts to ensure that all children enter kindergarten “ready to learn,” Gary Community Investments is working to increase awareness among the early childhood, business and policy communities, along with the general public, about the Colorado Child Care Contribution Tax Credit (CCTC), which has the power to increase funding for child care providers, and, ultimately, improve access to quality care in our state.

The CCTC enables qualified child care providers to receive financial donations directly from individuals and businesses. Taxpayers are incentivized to use the credit because they can claim a Colorado income tax credit up to 50% of their total contribution.  

Gary Community Investments supports the CCTC because of the positive impact it can have on the lives of low-income children. Children who have access to quality early childhood education are more likely to do well in school, go to college, earn more money and own their own homes. In addition, research shows that a child’s development before age five is significant and crucial, yet public education dollars are still only allocated to kindergarten and beyond. Therefore, early education remains a shared responsibility of—and benefit to—everyone, and the CCTC enables an ideal collaboration between the public and private sectors.

A coalition of business, community and government leaders, which includes Gary Community Investments, is working to educate the community about the CCTC. The coalition worked with JVA Consulting to develop the below outreach toolkits to help various audiences that are interested in promoting, benefiting from or utilizing the CCTC.

Tools for Child Care Providers: This toolkit is for child care providers and is divided into two sections. The first section provides factual information on the CCTC and walks you through the process of becoming a qualified center and accepting donations. The section section provides you with tools to take advantage of the CCTC and inform others in your community about this opportunity.

Tools for Business Communities: This toolkit provides small and large business with CCTC tax information and explains the benefits for donating. It also includes donation forms and outreach emails for partners.

Tools for Early Childhood Advocates: This toolkit is for early childhood advocates who are interested in helping spread the word about the CCTC. The toolkit includes a FAQ sheet, sample outreach materials, as well as a draft letter you can customize.

Tools for Financial Advisors: This toolkit provides CPAs and financial advisors with information on the CCTC and FAQs that can be used when advising clients on their charitable investments.

Tools for Policy Makers: This toolkit provides policy makers information on the CCTC and includes an outreach letter.

Tools for Other Influentials: This toolkit is for individual donors and philanthropists. It includes a FAQ sheet and a letter to customize for outreach.

Colorado’s Youngest: A 0-5 Profile

Gary Community Investments is committed to helping ensure that low-income children are prepared to enter kindergarten “ready to learn,” meaning they have been exposed to experiences that develop their sensory, language and cognitive skills. Children who enter kindergarten ready to learn are more likely to read proficiently by the end of third grade, a leading indicator of future educational and economic success.

In an effort to provide more insight into Colorado’s early childhood landscape, The Piton Foundation’s Data Initiative just released "Colorado’s Youngest: A Profile of the 0-5 Population," the first in a series of briefs about our state’s youngest children. This demographic profile of children born from 2009 - 2013 who live in Colorado and metro Denver takes an in-depth look at vulnerable births and examines additional indicators that represent the development of young children.  Accompanying the brief is an interactive story map that allows users to view additional data and explore neighborhood level maps. 

Featured Investment: Accion

As part of our two-generational approach to improving the lives of Colorado’s low-income children and their families, Gary Community Investments is committed to helping prepare children for educational success from an early age while simultaneously equipping their parents with the tools they need to create healthy family environments and achieve long-term financial security. One of our strategies for creating community and economic development opportunities for families living in low-income families includes investing in local and national community development financial institutions (CDFIs) that provide credit and financial services to underserved populations.

We recently announce our first CDFI investment in Accion, a nonprofit dedicated to providing social and financial capital to entrepreneurs to support job creation, family economic security and child well-being. Through a combination of philanthropic and social impact investments, we are providing $2 million in funding to Accion over the next two years, helping the organization significantly grow its footprint in Colorado so it can increase its capacity to create opportunities for entrepreneurs, generate and sustain jobs, alleviate poverty, support early childhood growth and academics through family entrepreneurship, and grow small businesses.

Accion provides business loans from $200 to $500,000+, along with training, networking and other support services, to those who own or want to start a business and have difficulty accessing capital from banking institutions. Approximately 80 percent of Accion borrowers are low- to moderate-income income, minority or female individuals. Although Accion has been doing business in Colorado since 2008, our funding will allow the organization to significantly ramp up the number of low-income families it serves over the next two years. 

In addition, Gary Community Investments support is helping Accion move forward with its Sustainability and High Impact Initiative, which will allow the organization to have its costs almost completely covered by its lending program. By 2017, Accion anticipates that 90% of its operating costs will be covered by program income, allowing it to become a permanent, self-sustaining resource for Colorado entrepreneurs to access social and financial capital.

To learn more about Gary Community Investments' investment in Accion, read this article from the Denver Business Journal. 


Subscribe to Gary Community Investments RSS