Peer Learning Networks

Of the many ways we work to fulfill our mission, we’ve found peer groups and learning networks to be one of the most promising strategies. Meaningful connections between funders allows for sharing best practices, opportunities, and lessons learned; coordinating presence; and when appropriate, collaboration. Learn more about our various opportunities below.

Arts & Culture Funders Group

The Arts & Culture Funders Group provides a space for funders across the state to share projects, creative funding approaches, and opportunities to collaborate. Co-chairs: Tariana Navas-Nieves, Denver Arts & Venues, and Margaret Hunt, Colorado Creative Industries. For more information, contact Amy Swiatek.

Executive Admin Group

The Executive Admin Group is a peer-group of executive admin staff and others who support senior-level executives at Philanthropy Colorado member organizations. The group provides a forum for the exchange of ideas and resources with those who perform similar job functions. For more information, contact

Human Resources & Operations Group

The Human Resources & Operations Group is a peer-group designed to support HR/Operations professionals at Philanthropy Colorado member foundations. This peer network provides a supportive environment to share knowledge and resources, test complex ideas with peers related to managing a foundation, as well as strengthen professional skills and expertise. Co-chairs: Nazrawit (Naz) Medhanie, Rose Community Foundation and Audra Palakodety, Boettcher Foundation. For more information, contact Eliane Walters.

Leadership Forum

CAF established the Leadership Forum for the leaders of Philanthropy Colorado member organizations. CEOs, Presidents, Executive Directors and heads of corporate giving programs are invited to participate. The Leadership Forum allows for: more in-depth and consistent discussion at the most senior level; relationship-building; open dialogue and sharing of expertise; and discussion of sector-wide issues that affect grantmakers. Leadership Forum members are asked to refrain from sending a representative if they cannot attend personally. Co-chairs: Kelly Dunkin, Community First Foundation, and Adeeb Khan, Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation. For more information, contact Joanne Kelley.

Impact Investing Forum

Philanthropy Colorado initiated this group for members with an active interest in sharing and learning about impact investing trends and emerging models. The group meets periodically to exchange information and to hear from guest speakers on various topics such as social impact bonds and issue areas that can be addressed through alternative forms of investment. Co-chairs: Sue Dorsey, Gates Family Foundation, Ben Bynum, The Colorado Health Foundation and Santhosh Ramdoss, Gary Community Ventures. For more information, contact Joanne Kelley.

Rural Funders Learning Network

The Rural Funders Learning Network convenes funders investing in rural regions of the state, helping them identify common priorities, reduce local confusion and find innovative ways of working with local residents and leaders to collaborate on future funding strategies. Co-chairs: Tony Lewis, Donnell-Kay Foundation, Amy Latham, Colorado Health Foundation, and Paul Major, Telluride Foundation. For more information, contact Amy Swiatek.

Early Childhood Funders Network

The Early Childhood Funders Network (ECFN) is a group of funders working to advance the well-being of Colorado’s young children and their families. ECFN members come together to share information on local and national developments; to deepen their knowledge of the field; to brainstorm possible solutions to systemic challenges; and, to collaborate when opportunities arise. Chair: Laura Carlson, Buell Foundation. For more information, contact Sylvia Kamau-Small

Early Childhood Mental Health Funders Network

The Early Childhood Mental Health Funders Network (ECMH) is a diverse group of Colorado grantmaking organizations that fund in many areas and have a shared interest in children’s mental health. ECMH members have come together to share ideas, learn, and work together to improve the social, emotional and mental health of children birth to age three. 

Colorado Community Foundation CEO Network

Philanthropy Colorado Community Foundation CEOs meet quarterly via videoconfernce to share ideas, common challenges and discuss emerging issues and topics of interest. Philanthropy Colorado also hosts special webinars or calls on various topics for community foundation members as opportunities arise. Co-chairs: Jeanne Bistranin, Summit Foundation, and Tatiana Hernandez, Community Foundation Boulder County. For more information, contact Amy Swiatek.

Small Funders Peer Group

The Small Funders Peer Group brings together staff of small foundations throughout Colorado to build relationships, share best practices and resources, discuss common opportunities and challenges, and learn/brainstorm around topics of interest. Small foundations are defined as having no more than two staff members. Chair: Kristi Petrie, AJL Foundation. For more information, contact

IT Roundtable

The IT Roundtable is a peer-group for IT specialists, operations managers, technology directors, financial officers, CEOs, office managers, executive assistants, program officers, and anyone else with an interest in connecting with other foundation professionals about the latest in IT and cybersecurity.  In the ever-changing landscape of IT, this peer-group provides a supportive environment to exchange information and get updated on best practices. Co-Chairs: Dave Miller, El Pomar Foundation and David Brown, Daniels Fund. For more information, contact