Downtown Stars recognized at Downtown Partnership Annual Breakfast
Downtown Partnership honored four outstanding contributors to the economic, civic and cultural vitality of Downtown Colorado Springs at their annual breakfast on Friday, September 28, 2018 with Downtown Star awards.
A crowd of 650 people gathered at the Antlers Hotel for the 21st annual Downtown Partnership Breakfast. Remarks by Mayor John Suthers were followed by Downtown Star presentations and updates on Downtown projects, developments and initiatives. Downtown Star recipients for 2018 are:
Quad Innovation Partnership. Opening in spring 2017, the Quad Innovation Partnerships brought together four institutions of higher learning: Pikes Peak Community College, the U.S. Air Force Academy, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and Colorado College. The Quad has expanded the incubation ecosystem, to tackle regional problems with fresh approaches, and equip young adults with the skills, leadership and determination necessary to be a force for change. Quad students meet with civic leaders and learn to build a network of experts who advise them and help to further their progress, and have taken on projects such as improving access to social services, building a sustainable path forward for Venetucci Farm, and strategic positioning for the future of Colorado Springs Utilities. Recent college graduates and Quad students are connected to our community and aware of opportunities that encourage this vital segment of our workforce to choose to stay in Colorado Springs, a place where their career opportunities and lifestyles can flourish.
Urban Peak Colorado Springs. For nearly two decades, Urban Peak Colorado Springs has served homeless youth, ages 15 to early 20s. A particularly vulnerable population, these youth are often fleeing conflictual family situations, exiting foster care, or are otherwise on the margins of society. Without support, they face greater risk of dropping out of school, being targeted by human traffickers or slipping deep into drug or alcohol addictions. Urban Peak provides more than a safe space for the night. Urban Peak provides meals, case management, employment support, education support, and positive adult role models who meet youth at face value without judgment. Additionally, they offer a supportive housing program that provides young adults a stepping stone from shelter to independent living, with rental assistance and support services to foster a more stable life situation. The work of Urban Peak has life-long impact, ensuring that young people in our community – usually young people from our community – can get off the streets and onto a safe and supportive path toward a better life.
Chuck Murphy and Michael Collins. Through their passion for art and determination to build a world-class public art program, Chuck Murphy and Michael Collins have been involved with the award-winning Art on the Streets program since its inception 20 years ago. Through Art on the Streets, Downtown has benefitted from nearly 300 works on temporary annual display and more than 30 artworks acquired for permanent exhibition Downtown. Through their personal philanthropy, through Michael’s past service as an exhibition juror, and through their unwavering commitment to the artists who are the heart and soul of this program, Michael and Chuck have ensured that each year Art on the Streets gets better and better. To launch, sustain and grow such a program for 20 years is no easy feat, and would not have been possible without the commitment of both Chuck Murphy and Michael Collins.