Telluride Academy: Board Announces Exec Director Luke Brown Saying Goodbye!

Telluride Academy: Board Announces Exec Director Luke Brown Saying Goodbye!

As members of the Telluride Academy community, we want to share some important updates about future plans for Telluride Academy. After an incredible 18-year career, including five years as the Executive Director, we write to share that Luke Brown will be departing the Telluride Academy to pursue other passions and new opportunities.

Luke Brown, director, Telluride Academy is stepping down.

Under his direction, the Academy navigated a global pandemic and provided children the opportunity to have a “normal” summer experience in nature. Luke was also an integral part of the Academy’s recent acquisition of the staff house down valley. These are just a few of his many accomplishments during his long tenure.

On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff of Telluride Academy, and on behalf of all families, friends, and supporters, we offer our most heartfelt gratitude to Luke for his 18 years of dedicated service to the organization. Luke’s presence will be missed, but we are excited for him and the future of Telluride Academy.

The Telluride Academy Board of Directors will begin a search for a new Executive Director. In the meantime, Telluride Academy’s beloved Financial Director, Larry Rosen, will be stepping in as interim Executive Director. Summer 2022 registration is off to a successful start, and the Board, leadership, and staff at Telluride Academy could not be more excited about this summer’s programs and are dedicated to making this summer our best yet! We continue our dedication to the core principles of our mission: inspire children and teens through experiential education that promotes physical activity, creative learning, environmental stewardship, responsibility to others and positive life choices.

A Message From Luke

An Amazing Adventure

To My Telluride Academy Family,

The time has come for me to say goodbye. I am resigning from my current position as Executive Director for Telluride Academy. For 18 years I have called Telluride Academy home. It has been the place where I found both friendship and family. It was a stage from which I was given the incredible gift of sharing my passion for adventure and the rejuvenation of nature with others. It was a place where I was charged with honoring the vision and hard work of those that came before me. It was my heart. And, oh how my heart is full.

Throughout this process of transition, I have been reflecting deeply on the three phases of my Academy adventure. From my early years as a field instructor on my mountain bike, riding behind my students and encouraging them with “Head Up! Pedals Flat!” and then watching them accelerate down the trail, breathing in the sound of their elation at finding success where challenge once existed. To witnessing the courage of our students on a moonlit night in central Ethiopia in the back of a rickety pickup truck tasked with delivering them to their new host families in such a foreign land. The excitement of facilitating our annual staff trainings and finding reminders and resolve in the enthusiasm and anticipation of our incredible field staff. Most recently, I think about the challenge of guiding our program through a global pandemic and for the opportunity to see firsthand the power and importance that exists within the work that we do.

Telluride Academy allowed me to connect to the community that I cherish, and it has enhanced that community for me immensely. For nearly two decades, I have found such joy through the imprinting of my own childhood experiences here in the southwest into our programming, into our fabric. Working alongside the countless staff and unique specialists that gave so gracefully of themselves to create empowering experiences for our students has been a gift that I will cherish forever. I am so proud of the work that we do. To watch our students every summer, get up and get out, try new things, meet new people, stumble and fall, get back up and ultimately develop skills and cultivate passions that they can carry with them for a lifetime has been an immeasurable blessing. Telluride Academy has taken me to countless magical places around the planet. It has placed me in the shoes of my students and the allowed me to experience the awe and wonder that they see in the world. It has guided my path on a course that has intersected with so many passionate and incredible people and has engendered deep and meaningful relationships that I will cherish for all of time.

My journey with Telluride Academy has made me fluent in a way of living that embraces a language of challenge, risk, communication, decision making, teamwork, failure and most importantly, the incredible power of play. I embark on my next adventure with an immeasurable amount of gratitude and appreciation for everyone that has supported me throughout this journey. To the two decades of colleagues, staff, interns, board members, trustees, parents, students, and the occasional stranger that have lifted me up along the way, I share this moment with you all. Finally, I must give thanks to our founder and my mystic grandmother, Wendy Brooks, whose seeds once planted, blossomed into this beautiful thing we call the Academy and that I was fortunate enough to tend to for a time, always grateful for the places and faces that it placed before me.

My bags are packed, I have my lunch and my water bottle, I may have forgotten my rain jacket, but my head is up, my pedals are flat and I am exalted by the motion of moving forward down the trail.

In ultimate gratitude,


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