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IT STARTED WITH A WORLD backpacking trip.

Newlyweds Kelly Belknap and Matilda Sandström discovered the joy of generosity when they filled their pack at a local market, then passed out food as they met needy people during the day.

So they decided to launch a company!

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OLD TOWN MEDIA has developed an amazing reputation in northern Colorado. They’re a creative and thorough marketing agency based in Fort Collins. With a love for office dogs!

Every time I hear someone mention this business, the same words keep popping up:

  • Small and personal
  • Amazing expertise

When I had the chance to chat with CEO and Founder Miles Kailburn recently. We talked about the phases they’ve gone through since starting the company in 2007.

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STU CRAIR FOUNDED Digital Workshop Center in 2006 with a simple idea: to help people build useful skills, not just get degrees.

This great business delivers technical education: web design, graphic design, business administration, and so on. Their much-needed content is supported by training that’s always live, which means more personal attention to students in the room.

What tweaked my interest recently was an announcement that they’ve developed a partnership with Homeless Gear to provide technical training – for free – to people in their Hand Up program.

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GREAT FOOD IS EXPENSIVE these days, and can be totally out of reach for the struggling and homeless.

That’s why I was honored to speak with Mallory Andrews recently, the new executive director of FoCo Cafe here in our choice city.

You might have heard of the donation-based restaurant model. It’s a simple concept: eat what you want, and pay according to your ability and what you believe is fair.

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GREYSTONE TECHNOLOGY is a local Information Technology (IT) outsourcing firm. Currently with 85 employees, they’ve been growing at a rapid clip for over a decade.

I had a chance to sit down with Peter Melby recently, who owns the company along with Jesse Armstrong. They formed the business in 2001 with the idea that this would be a fun and motivating environment for employees.

Which is what they’ve built. But there’s so much more to the story.

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WINDSONG MEMORY CARE is a great new facility in Fort Collins, part of the new growing field of applying Montessori methods to help dementia patients.

They call their approach the Montessori Inspired Lifestyle®, and it’s revolutionary.

We all have fears when it comes to our declining years. For me, the idea of losing my memory and thinking is unbelievably scary.

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STEVE MARSHALL BILLS HIMSELF as a “Transformation Enabler.”

At least that’s what it says on his business card.

What he really does is to work with  leaders on strategic planning, organizational development, managing change, and executive coaching.  It’s similar to my own coaching practice, but he tends to focus a bit more on larger companies and more complex organizations.

As you know, my website here is dedicated to business owners who are living in a different paradigm.  We’re making money, sure, but more importantly we’re improving the world through our work.

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ROBERTO VALDEZ RUNS AN AMAZING BUSINESS recycling mattresses here in Fort Collins.

His heart is in serving those who are looking to rebuild their lives after incarceration or drug addiction. In fact, that’s how he got engaged with Spring Back Mattress Recycling in the first place.

He created a new life based on the support and leadership of Christopher Conway, his boss and mentor. I met Christopher as well, a sincere man who’s on a mission to serve the community.

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MidiCi BRANDS ITSELF AS “The Neapolitan Pizza Company.” New to Fort Collins, you might be skeptical about whether this town needs another pizza place, no matter how good the food is.

I had a chance this week to be introduced to the owners of this great new MidiCi franchise, opened just three weeks ago.  Frank and Kim Brewster come from Greeley and are passionate about the unique employee culture of this business. Read the rest of this entry »

ABSOLUTELY AMAZING THINGS HAPPEN when you stick to a great mission for years.

I wrote about The ShareLingo Project a couple of years ago, so I was super excited when James Archer contacted me about what’s been happening.  It turns out that he’s just 22 days away from launching his new book about developing programs which build cross-language learning through cross-cultural relationships.

Quick synopsis: ShareLingo brings together small teams of English and Spanish speakers where they learn the foreign language from each other while building personal relationships and deep appreciation for culture.  Feel free to check out that previous article for more of the story.

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