HUD Announces Recipients of Inaugural Secretary’s Award for Community Foundations

THE U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), in partnership with the Council on Foundations, recognized The Telluride Foundation as one of 10 recipients of the first annual Secretary’s Award for Community Foundations. The award honors community foundations for their innovative public-philanthropic collaborations designed to address housing and community development challenges.

The award was announced during the Council’s Fall Conference for Community Foundations, September 10 – 12, in New Orleans. Paul Major, President & CEO of the Foundation, Katie Singer, Development Director, and Board Member, Andrew Karow all attended the Conference to accept the honor.

“I am honored to accept this award on behalf of the Foundation Board of Directors,” said Andrew Karow, Foundation Board Member, “It is exciting to be recognized for the vision and commitment that the  Board of Directors has for the Telluride and Paradox regions as well as for all the work the Foundation is doing in the Paradox communities.”

HUD and the Council on Foundations’ Public-Philanthropic Partnership Initiative developed the award to recognize community foundations for enhancing the quality of life for low-income and moderate-income families. The projects addressed issues concerning housing and neighborhood improvements, education, health and recreation, transportation, arts and culture, public safety, sustainability and economic development. An expert panel selected one award recipient from each of HUD’s 10 regions.

The Foundation was selected because of its Paradox Community Trust Initiative, created in 2008 as a new private/public partnership between local municipalities, county governments, state agencies, and federal departments — a new model to address and moderate the inevitable boom and bust cycles of extraction based economies, a pattern of economic and community development all too common among western rural communities. The partnership transformed the relationship among rural, low-income communities, state leaders, the Colorado Department of Local Affairs, oil and gas companies and the local and county governments within the Paradox Basin and resulted in the Paradox Community Trust (PCT), a permanent investment fund with the goal of growing wealth locally and moderating the inevitable boom and bust cycles of extraction-based economies. By combining mining severance taxes with foundation grants, corporate charitable contributions, and local giving and estate planning, the PCT builds a permanent, stable fund to invest in community improvement and economic development.

“The Telluride Foundation and the other honorees are shining examples of  foundations at their best, demonstrating leadership, vision, partnership, and investment,” said Vikki N. Spruill, president and CEO of the Council on Foundations. “While leaders will continue facing challenges in years to come, we should be heartened by the philanthropic spirit community foundations exemplify as they innovate, take risks, and make a positive impact for the people they serve.”

Community foundations in America administer more than $49 billion in charitable funds in more than 725 communities and regions throughout the country.

To learn more about the award recipients and HUD Secretary’s Award for Community Foundations at:

The Telluride Foundation exists to create a stronger Telluride community through the promotion and support of philanthropy. It is a non-profit, apolitical community foundation that provides year-round support for local organizations involved in arts, education, athletics, charitable causes, land conservation and other community-based efforts through technical assistance, education and grant making. As a grant maker, The Foundation awards grants to qualified applicants that serve the people living and working in the Telluride area for the purpose of enhancing the quality of life within the region. For more information on the Telluride Foundation, visit

The Council on Foundations is a national nonprofit association of more than 1,800 grantmaking foundations and corporations. As the leading advocate for philanthropy, we strive to increase the effectiveness, stewardship, and accountability of our sector while providing our members with the services and support they need to advance the common good. More information is available on Twitter at @COF_ and Facebook at

HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers, meet the need for quality affordable rental homes, utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life, build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination, and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available at and You can also follow HUD on twitter @HUDnews, on Facebook at, or sign up for news alerts on HUD’s News Listserv.

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