Yampa Valley Philanthropists of the Year honored
Steamboat Springs — The Yampa Valley Community Foundation honored Glen and Stephany Traylor, BAP/Big Agnes/Honey Stinger and Jessica Rossi Friday night as recipients of the 2015 Philanthropist of the Year awards at the organization’s Celebration of Philanthropy dinner at Larson Barn in Steamboat Springs.
For 17 years, YVCF has awarded this honor to the individual, business and youth member of the Yampa Valley community that has donated their time and efforts toward charitable giving, insightful leadership and volunteerism and has encouraged others to contribute.
Individual Philanthropists of the Year — Glen and Stephany Traylor
From their first days in Steamboat Springs, Glen and Stephany Traylor immersed themselves in a variety of philanthropic and volunteer efforts, from Leadership Steamboat to the Young Professionals Network, never missing an opportunity to give.
“We initially got involved with the community to connect with other people and get to know the town itself, which was a great learning experience” Stephany said. “Even when I think I’m involved in enough, a new opportunity comes up. It’s addicting to give back once you know what it feels like.
The Traylors also utilize their business, Ski Butlers, as an avenue through which they can continue to serve the community. They have sponsored events for STARS, LIFT-UP, the Free Concert Series and others, and they require their employees to participate in two hours a month of paid community service.
One of the more notable contributions is the Yampa Valley Gives project, which Glen chairs as part of his initial involvement with Leadership Steamboat’s 2014 class. Yampa Valley Gives coordinates with Colorado Gives Day, and in its first year, raised more than $400,000 for Routt and Moffat County organizations during a 24-hour period of online giving.
“The successes I’ve had are due to the teams I’ve worked with, the community here, and the effort I’ve put toward our endeavors that have allowed us great success,” Glen said.
Business Philanthropist of the Year — Bap/Big Agnes/Honey Stinger
Although Bap shies away from advertising its giving, the company has a generous track record that made it an obvious choice for the Business Philanthropist of the Year award.
“With so many other generous companies in town, it’s an honor to be recognized,” said Bill Gamber, co- founder and president of Honey Stinger and Big Agnes. “We wouldn’t be able to make any of this happen without the great employees we work with at all three companies, many of which are directly involved in our nonprofit support.”
The company encourages employees to support the United Way campaign through workplace giving and to volunteer in the community with charities of their choice during three designated volunteer days.
It hosts the Steamboat Stinger, a popular mountain bike and trail running race, which raises over $5,500 for Partners in Routt County and Routt County Riders, and supports the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, Steamboat soccer and the Rocky Mountain Youth Corps among others.
“Our support of both local and national organizations has helped increase our brand awareness but more importantly has allowed us to support those organizations doing work we feel is important locally and at a broader state or national level,” Gamber said.
Youth Philanthropist of the Year — Jessica Rossi
For Jessica Rossi, giving back is just part of her personality.
“I’m pretty outgoing and enjoy being with other people, which has led me to helping people out,” Rossi said.
Rossi recently graduated from Soroco High School. She has participated in over 495 hours of community service during her four years at Soroco and over 700 throughout her life.
She has spent her hours of service with St. Martins Catholic Church, 4-H, Literary Carnivals, the Routt County CattleWomen, and, one of her favorites, the Yampa Valley Science School with the sixth grade science camp.
“It’s hard to pick a highlight,” Rossi said. “When I’m in that sort of environment, I’m just having a lot of fun.”
In the fall, Rossi will be attending Eastern Wyoming University to pursue an associate’s degree in farm and ranch management with a certificate in beef production. During her time there, she will play varsity basketball.
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