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Chinook Fund supports community organizations working on issues of racial, social and economic justice in the state of Colorado.

Chinook Fund Event at the Posner Center

WHO WE ARE

Chinook Fund has given out over $4 million in grants since 1987. Chinook Fund pools money from Colorado’s progressive community and distributes it back to grassroots groups working on a wide range of social change issues.

Chinook funding supports the most strategic work unfolding at the local level addressing issues of social and economic justice. Chinook Fund’s grassroots grantmaking is unique. We recruit our board, grantmaking committee, and Giving Project members from the communities we serve throughout Colorado. With the direct knowledge these grantmakers bring, we are able to respond to new ideas and fresh thinking. Chinook Fund makes grants that other foundations may view as “risky” but are often funding years later.

WHO WE ARE

Chinook Fund has given out over $3.6 million in grants since 1987. Chinook Fund pools money from Colorado’s progressive community and distributes it back to grassroots groups working on a wide range of social change issues.

Chinook funding supports the most strategic work unfolding at the local level addressing issues of social and economic justice. Chinook Fund’s grassroots grantmaking is unique. We recruit our board, grantmaking committee, and Giving Project members from the communities we serve throughout Colorado. With the direct knowledge these grantmakers bring, we are able to respond to new ideas and fresh thinking. Chinook Fund makes grants that other foundations may view as “risky” but are often funding years later.

Our Staff

  • Crystal Middlestadt<br>Pronouns: They/Them
    Crystal Middlestadt
    Pronouns: They/Them
    Executive Director
  • Mateo Parsons<br>Pronouns: He/Him
    Mateo Parsons
    Pronouns: He/Him
    Program Director
  • P. Barclay Jones<br>Pronouns: He/Him
    P. Barclay Jones
    Pronouns: He/Him
    Program Manager
  • Mac Liman <br> Pronouns: She/Her
    Mac Liman
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Interim Program Coordinator
  • Alma Urbano<br>Pronouns: She/Her
    Alma Urbano
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Interim Grants Manager
  • Trena Moya<br>Pronouns: She/Her
    Trena Moya
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Finance & Operations Manager
  • Shelby Bates<br>Pronouns: She/Her
    Shelby Bates
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Development & Communications Manager

Board Members

  • Angela Daniels <br>Pronouns: She/Her
    Angela Daniels
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Board Co-Chair
  • Anna Eunjoo Ghublikian<br>Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs
    Anna Eunjoo Ghublikian
    Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs
    Board Co-Chair
  • Selamawit Gebre <br>Pronouns: She/Her
    Selamawit Gebre
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Board Secretary
  • Erik Ortiz <br> Pronouns: He/Him
    Erik Ortiz
    Pronouns: He/Him
    Board Treasurer & Chair of Finance and Investment Committee
  • Angela Schreffler<br>Pronouns: She/Her
    Angela Schreffler
    Pronouns: She/Her
    Chair of Resource Mobilizer Committee
  • Donna Chrisjohn<br>Pronouns: Wiƞyan/She/Her
    Donna Chrisjohn
    Pronouns: Wiƞyan/She/Her
    Board Member
  • Matt Karkut <br>Pronouns: He/Him
    Matt Karkut
    Pronouns: He/Him
    Board Member

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Crystal Middlestadt
Pronouns: They/Them
Executive Director

Pronouns: They/Them

Crystal joined Chinook Fund in April 2018 and brings a depth of experience with nonprofit leadership, resource mobilization, and social justice. Crystal believes that changing our relationship to money has the potential to radically shift the way we mobilize resources for movements. They are thrilled to continue Chinook Fund’s legacy of democratic grantmaking through the innovative Giving Project.

Crystal previously worked for the Grassroots Institute for Fundraising Training (GIFT), Survivors Organizing for Liberation, a former Chinook Fund grantee, and is proud to have helped kickstart resource mobilization gatherings at the Allied Media Conference. During their tenure at GIFT, Crystal was proud to bring the 2016 Money for Our Movements: A Social Justice Fundraising Conference to Denver. Crystal is board co-chair of Resource Generation, serves on the steering committee for the National Giving Project Network, and participated in the Transformative Leadership for Change fellowship for BIPOC leaders in Colorado.

Crystal was raised in a small, working class town in Oregon by a family of paper mill workers and was the first person in their family to graduate from college. After receiving their B.S. in Sociology and Women’s Studies from the University of Oregon in 2003, Crystal moved to Denver and soon began organizing around issues of gender justice, LGBTQ anti-violence, and racial justice, sparking them to put down roots in this mountain state.  They are continually inspired by adrienne maree brown, author of Emergent Strategy, who reminds us that what we pay attention to grows.

Crystal lives with in southwest Denver and spends their spare time learning to garden, building their vinyl collection, sneaker shopping, and camping throughout the West.

Mateo Parsons
Pronouns: He/Him
Program Director

Mateo joined Chinook Fund as Program Director in May 2024. He was born and raised in a working class home in Western CO and is N’de (Apache) and Hispano New Mexican on his maternal grandfather’s side, the grandson of Indigenous Mexican (Yoeme and Tarahumara) farmworkers and UFW members on his maternal grandmother’s side, and Scottish & English on his paternal side.

Inspired by his maternal grandmothers’ family’s participation in the farmworker labor movement, Mateo has dedicated himself to a life in service to his community. He has a background in grassroots community organizing and activism, policy advocacy, and strategic communications. Before coming to Chinook Fund, Mateo served as Co-Executive Director of Four Winds American Indian Council, where he and other Council members organized unhoused and working class Indigenous people in Denver with a focus on community defense & mutual aid, housing justice, and cultural revitalization. Mateo continues to serve on the Board of Directors for Four Winds. Prior to his time with Four Winds, Mateo worked for the Bell Policy Center and Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, where he was a key staff member in advancing several high-profile progressive legislative victories for working class Coloradans.

As a first-generation college student, Mateo earned his BA in Political Science with a focus in Comparative Politics at Colorado College, where he was a student leader and activist with the Native American Student Union. In his free time, you can find him enjoying all that Colorado’s backcountry has to offer with his partner and two dogs.

P. Barclay Jones
Pronouns: He/Him
Program Manager

Pronouns: He/Him

Barclay works with donor organizers through the Giving Project at Chinook Fund. His work focuses on facilitating groups of dynamic individuals as they deepen their awareness of their identities (emphasizing race and class), engage in political education and democratically distribute funding to community organizations across Colorado. In addition to this work, he serves as a consultant to nonprofit, public and private organizations seeking to improve their performance.

Having developed and led a number of high-performing teams, Barclay helps organizations and groups to identify challenges and opportunities while acknowledging and integrating the unique skills and abilities of all team members/employees/constituents. Group facilitation, community development, capacity building, grantmaking and strategic planning are areas that he specializes in. During his time in the nonprofit and public sectors he has focused on the subject areas of early childhood education, education, youth development, asset building, leadership development and multicultural education. He has worked diligently to ensure that community/resident engagement is built into programmatic efforts. Selected as a Livingston Fellow of the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation in 2007, he researched collaborative leadership approaches seeking to improve both organizational and community results (outcomes).

Barclay is the parent of two phenomenal children and actively volunteers in the community.

Mac Liman
Pronouns: She/Her
Interim Program Coordinator

Pronouns: She/Her

Mac Liman was born and raised in Colorado. She is passionate about organizing people around privileged identities — especially people who, like her, have race and class privilege — and she is honored to have been able to do this work with beautiful cross-class, multiracial community at Resource Generation since 2005 and Chinook Fund since 2007. She has served Chinook Fund on various fundraising and finance committees, as a Giving Project and White Privilege Caucus facilitator, and as a member of the board of directors from 2014-2020. In many ways, Chinook Fund developed Mac into the organizer she is today. She is forever grateful to the many Chinookies past and present who have taught her, supported her and lovingly encouraged her growth and accountability.

In addition to training, facilitating, and moving her people towards collective action, Mac accidentally became a master bicycle mechanic and taught thousands of people to fix thousands of bikes, and intentionally lives with many of her favorite people in a shared community home called Sleeptight. She likes building infrastructure for a regenerative economy, being a good neighbor, asking questions, and making people laugh.

Alma Urbano
Pronouns: She/Her
Interim Grants Manager

Pronouns: She/Her

Alma Urbano is a Mexican immigrant,  community facilitator, and daughter of working-class community organizers and landscapers.

Alma has been able to serve and be trained under community organizations that center collective solution-sprouting practices through Project VOYCE, GES Coalition, and now Chinook Fund.

As a member of Chinook Fund’s 2020 Fall Giving Project, Alma fell in love with the practice of facilitating redistribution of wealth and grassroots fundraising.

Alma also finds lots of joy in reading fiction novels outside, and spending time with her cat and family. Alma was a first generation college student and has a BA in Sociology from Kenyon College. She is now part of the Transformative Leadership for Change 2019 cohort of Colorado BIPOC leaders.

Trena Moya
Pronouns: She/Her
Finance & Operations Manager

Pronouns: She/Her

Trena’s journey to joining Chinook Fund as the Finance & Operations Manager began in Omaha, NE where she grew up in a middle-class family as the youngest of 5 and granddaughter of Mexican immigrants & Kansas farmers. She followed some of her siblings to Colorado in 1985, which became her heart home at first visit.

After working in the banking industry for several years, Trena’s soul needed recharging and she returned to school, graduating from Metropolitan State University of Denver with a B.A. in Spanish. She then began her 20+ year career in the nonprofit/philanthropic sector, working with both local and international organizations, during which she has developed a range of skills in finance, human resources, administration, and operations.

Trena is a member of Denver Showing Up For Racial Justice (SURJ) and has been active in supporting her communities for many years. However, her participation in the Spring 2021 Giving Project helped her to better understand her responsibility and role in helping to bring about systemic change. She is excited to have the opportunity to apply her skills in support of Colorado’s grassroots organizers and Chinook Fund’s democratic grantmaking model.

Trena lives in North Denver with her partner, Don, and their ever-entertaining cat, Juniper. She feels lost without a book to read, treasures time with friends & family, and enjoys making her grandma’s mole every Christmas.

Shelby Bates
Pronouns: She/Her
Development & Communications Manager

Pronouns: She/Her

Shelby joined Chinook Fund in December 2023 as the Development and Communications Manager. Shelby believes in community engagement as one of the key ways to foster social change. It is that belief that led her to pursue a Master of Social Work, and ultimately community organizing work. Much of her past work experience has been with the disability community, including campaigns around Medicaid Expansion and college access for students with intellectual disabilities. At the heart of her work is a core belief in the need to uplift and amplify constituent voices.

Shelby grew up in a white, upper-class family, with parents raised middle-class. Her participation in a Giving Project in Spring 2021 fundamentally changed her relationship to money. She moved from an individual savings mindset to one that now centers the sharing and redistribution of resources. In her role with Chinook Fund, Shelby is most excited about the opportunity to invest in the many different organizations that Chinook Fund supports, grassroots groups leading powerful and creative social justice work across the state.

Shelby lives in Boulder. Outside of work, she enjoys baking, riding bikes, playing board games, spending time outdoors, and visiting with family and friends.

Angela Daniels
Pronouns: She/Her
Board Co-Chair

Pronouns: She/Her

Angela Daniels was part of the Spring 2019 cohort of The Giving Project where she fell in love with Chinook Fund and learned she could do that scary thing called “fundraising”. She became a member of the board in October of 2019. She has a B.A. in Theatre Arts from the University of Arizona and an M.A. in Emergent Digital Practices from the University of Denver.

Angela runs the Product team at a tech company in Denver. Inspired by the work she was doing with The Giving Project, Angela co-founded Women of Color in Tech – a community by and for women of color working in the tech industry to network and grow professionally.

Angela’s favorite book of all time is An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon. It is a science fiction book that explores the intersections of racism, classism, and the oppression of binary social constructs. She is also inspired by The Body is Not an Apology by Sonya Renee Taylor, which lays the foundation for radical self-love as a way to produce systemic change. Angela hopes she can take the lessons learned from both of these incredible works to honor and support the people in Colorado who are using grassroots community organizing to create real change.

Anna Eunjoo Ghublikian
Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs
Board Co-Chair

Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs

Anna joined the Chinook community as part of the Spring 2019 Giving Project. Their background is in art history, curation, video programming, and production. They currently work as an artist and filmmaker. They are also a practicing artist interested in exploring themes of time and loss. Other organizing work includes Resource Generation and Corporate Accountability. They were raised in Massachusetts and relocated to Denver in 2014 after spending most of their life on the east coast. They received a BA in Art History from Swarthmore College and an MA in Public Humanities from Brown University. They love Murder, She Wrote, and Kate Bush.

Selamawit Gebre
Pronouns: She/Her
Board Secretary

Pronouns: She/Her

Born and raised in Atlanta, GA, Selamawit is a cyclical strategist, equity-centered designer, and a community member. She believes that many different relationships are required to move closer to transformation and that understanding and interrogating our relationships to money, politics, and each other are critical for social justice. She is currently the Director of Strategic Initiatives and Impact at RESCHOOL, an initiative of the Donnell Kay Foundation. Selamawit’s involvement with the Chinook Fund began with being a member of the Fall 2019 cohort of the Giving Project. Selamawit’s embodiment of self and collective freedom extends into many shapeshifting curiosities that appeal to her senses which include but are not limited to experimenting with fragrances, indulging in recipes, and dazzling in the stillness of the Colorado outdoors.

Erik Ortiz
Pronouns: He/Him
Board Treasurer & Chair of Finance and Investment Committee

Pronouns: He/Him

Erik is a non-profit leader with expertise in grant administration, capacity building, and strategic planning. A connector, Erik has focused his professional career on advocating for causes and serving communities in the areas of child abuse prevention, HIV/AIDS, cancer awareness and research, public health, and grassroots advocacy. He has served as a bilingual case manager, community organizer, and fundraiser for a number of organizations. Currently, Erik is an Associate Program Officer at the Colorado Health Foundation where he oversees grant administration in the areas of Access to Care and Behavioral Health. Originally from Colorado, Erik is also a dedicated volunteer for the Chinook Fund and an avid traveler and concert goer with his partner, Laura, and pup, Winston!

Angela Schreffler
Pronouns: She/Her
Chair of Resource Mobilizer Committee

Pronouns: She/Her

Angela has worked in the nonprofit sector her entire career, starting as an AmeriCorps member right out of college. She has worked as Colorado Nonprofit Development Center’s Vice President since 2013.  Prior to her current position, she was the executive director of Denver Regional Mobility and Access Council (DRMAC). Angela volunteers with Bessie’s Hope and with the Whittier Neighborhood Association, where she resides. She has served on several boards of directors and committees, including the event planning committee with Chinook Fund. Angela participated in Chinook Fund’s Giving Project in 2017 and joined the board in 2019. Angela has a master’s in Public Administration with an emphasis in Nonprofit Management. Away from work, Angela enjoys gardening, hiking, traveling, and craft beer.

Donna Chrisjohn
Pronouns: Wiƞyan/She/Her
Board Member

Pronouns: Wiƞyan/She/Her

Donna is Sicangu and Diné/Indigenous and uses Wiƞyan/she/her pronouns. She serves as Co-chair of the Denver American Indian Commission. Donna is a mother of five children and a native of Denver. She works as a legal professional for a law firm in downtown Denver. She stays active in the Native community by volunteering and participating in several community organizations. Donna is a public speaker and has been presenting historical information about Lakota people to schools and organizations for over 40 years. Education is not only a passion but a purpose for Donna. Her commitment to education is evident by her service on several committees for one of the Metro Denver school districts. Donna is an alumna of the Spring 2020 Giving Project.

Matt Karkut
Pronouns: He/Him
Board Member

Pronouns: He/Him

Originally from Salt Lake City, Utah, Matt’s experience growing up as a mixed-race Asian-American in the intermountain west informed his world views and motivations to advocate for positive social change and racial equity. Matt holds a B.A. in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Pomona College in California, and is currently the Executive Director of “Compañeros: Four Corners Immigrant Resource Center,” a grassroots nonprofit in Durango, CO. He has previously worked in English-Spanish interpretation and translation in the U.S. and South America, English as a second language (ESL) instruction in Europe, outdoor guiding in Central America, and international money transfer technology. Matt is also an avid musician, enjoys learning new recipes to cook, and loves spending time with family and friends.