By Sandy Wiegand, Copyeditor and Writer at Joining Vision and Action
Got plans for Colorado Day this year?
OK, maybe you didn’t know August 1 is Colorado Day—the (143rd) anniversary of the day Colorado became a state. And OK, it’s a Thursday, so maybe your plans are to work that day.
Guess what—ours, too!
But we at JVA love working in Colorado, so in honor of Colorado Day, my colleagues shared a few reasons why they love working in the Centennial State. Read on to get ideas for some new bragging material to use on your out-of-state family and friends.
Dedication to change
Here at JVA, we get the sense that no one we work with is just going through the motions. They really care about their impact.
“It’s more than a job” for JVA’s Colorado clients, says Jill, our co-managing director. “It’s truly about making the world a better place.”
Senior Grantwriter Katalin agrees: “I LOVE the people I work with! Engaged people with a wide range of interests. Active in their communities. Committed to improving life for people in Colorado. I love meeting new people (at different organizations) and learning about how they effect positive change for their communities.”
(If anyone needs more evidence, just point them to the client profiles in our Changemakers blog.)
Silvia, JVA’s bilingual evaluation and research associate, recognizes the level of effort put into these endeavors:
“I have seen firsthand how much energy and interest is placed on finding ways to remove barriers that may currently impede underserved sectors of the population. Colorado is a place where change is possible.”
Katalin also sees a focus on action in Colorado residents, commenting: “I think people I meet in Colorado are more opportunity-focused. They are inspired to do, instead of looking for excuses not to do.”
We’ve also noticed that Colorado organizations have an increasing focus on equity.
“I have worked with multiple organizations and institutions that deliberately look for ways to reach out to and engage minority communities, especially Latinx individuals, both English and Spanish speakers,” Silvia says. “Real efforts are being made at multiple levels toward increased equity.”
JVA is honored to be a part of this work by engaging diverse stakeholders in our work, from evaluation to planning to community engagement and beyond. We spell out our philosophy in our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement.
Highlighting one aspect of that philosophy, Katalin notes, “I love learning about different cultures through the organizations I work with.”
Katherine, JVA’s business development manager, appreciates the state’s “culture of entrepreneurialism, creativity and social responsibility.”
“I find it inspiring to meet so many enterprising individuals and companies who are focused on innovative solutions to tough issues,” she says, “and there are so many cool, socially minded companies and organizations across the state.”
Likewise, Jill says, “Because people are willing to be innovative in finding solutions and aren’t afraid to break the mold!”
Convenience and cachet
Marshall, JVA’s director of operations, likes the fact that working in urban Colorado offers flexibility to have a life in Colorado. And, he points out, people that Coloradans do business with are happy to have an excuse to come share our scenery for a while.
He notes that while there is work to be done in improving Internet access in rural Colorado, “most of urban Colorado is well wired, and there is availability and opportunity to work anywhere (home, office, coffee shop, restaurant, etc.),” he says. “That provides great flexibility when managing a hectic lifestyle.”
“Also nationally, Colorado has a certain cachet—beautiful state with lots of recreational opportunities as one—which I believe serves people and businesses well when dealing with businesses in other states. That is, there are reasons to come and do business here in Colorado, and it’s not always about the bottom financial line, so to speak!”
Duh, it’s Colorado
To continue on that theme, it does kind of seem like living in sunshine and striking beauty tends to improve the work—and life—experience.
Marshall continues: “I love Colorado due to the diversity of geography, geology and associated history. I don’t believe most folks know that Colorado is the eighth-largest state—and the geography has everything except an ocean. Colorado is a true crossroads state, with the meeting of the plains, mountains and Southwest (sun states).”
“I could spend all my life exploring every corner of Colorado and never be disappointed in what there is to learn.”
And Lisa, JVA’s senior resource development associate, puts it this way:
“Our majestic mountains seem to attract people who love the outdoors, and our open, big sky seems to reinforce the notion that we should aspire to be welcoming to everyone. Most people’s attitudes reflect the ‘live and let live, as long as you don’t hurt anyone’ vibe, which seems like a pretty good way to approach the world to me.”
Jill is more succinct: “The sunshine doesn’t hurt!”
What do you love about working in Colorado? We’d love for you to share with us in the comments!