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Alumni News
New tribal council member makes no promises – except to help

New tribal council member makes no promises – except to help

Alumna Cheryl Frost was recently elected to the Southern Ute Tribal Council with an ingenious – and unique – campaign platform: She ran on no platform at all. “I know the kind of person that I am,” Frost (English, ’95) says. “I don’t make promises to people that I can’t keep. I don’t make deals with people. I’m not going to put myself in an ethical quandary before I’m even elected. That’s why I chose no platform.”

Durango Devo gets young cyclists rolling

Durango Devo gets young cyclists rolling

Durango is famous for its world-class mountain biking and road riding, and it’s the home to many professional and Olympic cyclists. But until the last decade, the town did not have a successful, dedicated, long-term program for junior cyclists. That all changed when two former Skyhawks cyclists founded Durango Devo, a program dedicated to developing young riders in a traditional team setting.

Accountant values dreams over numbers

Accountant values dreams over numbers

Most of us think accounting is all about crunching numbers. For alumnus Brad Tafoya, though, being an accountant is more about heart than about spreadsheets. He and his firm, Tafoya Barrett & Associates, are all about helping their clients and their community reach their full potential.

Cycling champion brings performance center home to help others

Cycling champion brings performance center home to help others

Rotem Ishay won an individual national championship with the FLC cycling team, with the assistance of a local performance center’s fitness testing. Now, not only does Ishay run that same center—he has also brought his career as an exercise specialist back to campus through a unique partnership. Ishay (Exercise Specialist, ’12) is now the director of the Durango Performance Center, a sports lab that provides performance testing to both elite-level athletes and everyday people who want to improve their health, wellness, and performance.

Unlikely duo set the bar for craft doughnuts

Unlikely duo set the bar for craft doughnuts

An engineer and an artist start a doughnut shop. That pairing is so unexpected that it sounds like the setup to a punchline. But Rendezvous Doughnuts in Durango is no joke. Owner and founder Charlie Shew (Engineering, ’17) and brand manager Hayley Kirkman (Art, ’17) are having serious fun with the craft bakery they opened in late 2017.

Escape room entrepreneur puzzles out how to connect people

Escape room entrepreneur puzzles out how to connect people

Durango is the kind of place people escape to, not from. It’s also the kind of place where people are always game for a new challenge. That knowledge was a primary reason Hanna Pierce felt confident opening Conundrum Escape Rooms in downtown Durango. Now nearly two years old, Conundrum offers two escape rooms and a board game store. What it really offers, though, is the chance for people to truly connect with each other.

Photographer goes where no one has caved before [PHOTOS]

Photographer goes where no one has caved before [PHOTOS]

First ascents tend to capture popular imagination. But not many people get known for their first descents. So photographer Stephen Eginoire recognizes just how rare it is that he gets to be the first human being to step into caves unseen by human eyes or trod by human feet in Grand Canyon National Park.

Entrepreneur guides clients into the wild

Entrepreneur guides clients into the wild

When we face trying encounters with nature, we often discover what really matters in our lives. That’s the reason so many people undertake outdoor adventures, from day trips to backcountry expeditions – to learn about themselves by surviving tough challenges. And Josh Kling is the man who takes them there.

Alumna uses dual degrees to improve health of Native youth

Alumna uses dual degrees to improve health of Native youth

Shardai Pioche came to college knowing she wanted to help improve the health of Native American communities. Now, she’s making good on that desire, using her degrees in Public Health and Psychology to make a positive impact on Native students as a program coordinator in the NativeVision program in Shiprock, New Mexico. “Right now, we teach a health curriculum in school and after school,” Pioche (Public Health and Psychology, ’16) says.

Forensic therapist bridges psychology and criminal justice

Forensic therapist bridges psychology and criminal justice

“Forensic therapy” sounds like the premise for a dramatic television series. But the work Alex Easterbrook does as a real forensic therapist is far more challenging – and far more rewarding – than any scripted treatment could imagine. “Forensic psychology is the intersection between the criminal justice system and the therapy world,” Easterbrook (Psychology, ’13) says.

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