When Patricia Cameron hiked the Colorado Trail this summer, she saw few people of color around her. That’s something she’s looking to change as she strives for a more equitable outdoors.

Stephany Rose Spaulding recalls one of her first in-person interviews 10 years ago for her teaching position at UCCS. The Chicago native was told of all the living things that make the area home, including plenty of deer — and the occasional mountain lion.

Jessica “Jessie” Pocock was homeless at 13. She couch-surfed in unsafe places while struggling with substance abuse. At 17, she got sober, and this year she’s celebrating 20 years of sobriety.

If you ask Dr. Detra Duncan what her full-time job is, she’d likely tell you she’s a public health officer with Spectrum Healthcare Partners. The licensed dietitian and Fountain resident consults local health care providers to ensure nutritional services are up to par.

During her 14 years with Visit Colorado Springs, Amy Long has earned a reputation as someone who is able to handle a crisis in a calm, professional and effective manner.

When Yolanda Avila moved home to Colorado Springs in 2011, she was struck by the lack of public transportation, sidewalks and businesses in the Southeast. So she jumped in to make a difference and give back to her community.

As former business relations and employment development director for the Pikes Peak Workforce Center, Dana Barton made a difference in the lives of job seekers. Now, as director of the Rocky Mountain ADA Center, she’s making a difference in the lives of people with disabilities and their families. The common thread: affecting numerous lives for […]

If you don’t ask, the answer is no. If you have a chance, take it. If it changes your life, let it. That’s the advice Kristen Christy’s mother gave her years ago, and it’s the way she’s lived her life ever since. It hasn’t been easy. Christy has seen far more than her share of […]

Torie Giffin’s dream of founding and operating a cycling-centric lodge began as just that — a dream. “I always wanted to do my own thing,” Giffin, owner of the Buffalo Lodge Bicycle Resort, told the Business Journal. “Two nights in a row I had a dream about a hotel that would cater to bicyclists. It […]

Native Coloradan Amber Coté has been a go-to person in the Colorado Springs nonprofit world for more than 20 years — and she’s far from finished. So extensive is her resumé that it might be that of someone a generation older, about to enter a well-deserved retirement. She’s served on the boards of the Fine Arts […]

Not long after Cynthia Chung Aki retired from the military and moved to Colorado Springs, she felt a need to give something back to her new community. Since her arrival 21 years ago, she’s volunteered her time serving on numerous boards and committees for city and county government initiatives, as well as for local businesses […]

Chamisa MacIndoe knew she wanted to be a physician when she was a teenager. Growing up in a small, rural southern Colorado community with a single mom and three sisters, she had to work harder than most to achieve that goal. “I grew up very poor and had to work from a young age,” said […]

As a child in Upper Michigan, Shawna Kemppainen was always aware of her privilege. But it wasn’t until her time volunteering for Care and Share Food Bank in 2004 that she came face to face with it. While manning the food bank’s phone lines, Kemppainen answered a call from a woman in her 60s. The […]

Stella Hodgkins knows the importance of preparing for the future — and not just because of her background in sustainability. As a sustainability specialist for GE Johnson Construction Company over the past six-plus years, Hodgkins led the company’s efforts to meet the needs of its clientele through ecologically, socially and financially responsible means. Hodgkins moved […]

Karen Palus credits her father, a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel, with instilling in her a “leadership heart.” “My dad set that example well for me,” Palus said. “He always showed me what servant leadership looked like — not only putting your life on the line for your country, but also when he retired.” The […]

Donna Nelson first arrived in Colorado Springs in 1994 — but not by choice. She was stationed at Fort Carson and, like so many before her, thought that Colorado Springs would be a great place to settle down and start a post-military career. Leaving the Army in 1996, she took an entry-level job with Security […]

Bonnie Martinez barely warranted a passing glance from her peers when she walked into her first board meeting as managing officer for Norwest/Wells Fargo Bank’s San Antonio market. Finally a male executive, noticing the only woman in the room, told Martinez he would take his coffee with sugar. “I looked at him and said, ‘Oh […]

Imelda Ruiz is a woman of immense self-confidence — and with good reason. She landed her dream job fresh out of college, worked her way up into a leadership position in a male-dominated field of engineers at Colorado Springs Utilities, and still somehow finds time to volunteer in her faith community while co-parenting five children. […]

Krithika Prashant was in seventh grade in India when she discovered many girls didn’t have the opportunities she had. “I realized that after fourth grade, they have to leave [school] and start working for the family,” she recalls. “I told my mother, ‘Mama, this is not right.’ And she said, ‘Fine, that’s the problem — […]

Barbara Zoet Vidmar has been told she has too many good ideas. But her track record of accomplishment argues that, in her professional life and her service to the Pueblo community, there’s no such thing. Vidmar broke the glass windshield in the automotive industry, starting as a payroll clerk and becoming a dealer principal at […]

“A good leader inspires people to have confidence in the leader; a great leader inspires people to have confidence in themselves.” That quote from Eleanor Roosevelt is a favorite of Katherine Gaulke.

A high school counselor told Kimberly Hessler that she wasn’t college material and should just get married. She has proved that advisor wrong, many times over. As career services manager for SecureSet, a company that trains cybersecurity professionals, Hessler is a tireless advocate who helps graduating students — most of whom are transitioning military — […]