aka Yampatika   |   Steamboat Springs, CO   |  www.yampatika.org


Yampatika's mission is to inspire environmental stewardship through education

Ruling year info


Executive Director

Joe Haines

Main address

925 Weiss Dr

Steamboat Springs, CO 80487 USA

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NTEE code info

Environmental Education and Outdoor Survival Programs (C60)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Winter Sports (Snow and Ice) (N68)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Studies have shown that environmental education has numerous benefits (Lieberman, G.A., & Hoody, L.L., 1998). These include; •Increases school attendance •Promotes greater interest in school learning •Significantly increases student performance on tests of their critical thinking skills •Builds ownership in the community •Empowers students to make a difference Yampatika programs address issues related to connecting youth with nature, participation in STEM-based curriculum, critical thinking, problem-solving and peer-to-peer learning by incorporating the “outdoor classroom” into the school experience. This type of programming is especially important for more than 50% of participants who come from low to moderate-income homes with limited access to the outdoors. Yampatika programs seek to help participants become environmental stewards and develop a wondrous sense of connection. We want participants to have a greater appreciation and understanding of their local environment, their im

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Advancing Environmental Literacy in Youth

These are Yampatika’s school-based programs. This area includes Yampatika’s Environmental Literacy Program (ELP), Colorado Parks and Wildlife programs, TENS (Teaching Environmental Science Naturally) and SOLE (Schools and Outdoor Learning Environments), Water Education Programs, private school programs, and several one-day programs for Moffat County elementary schools. All Yampatika programs meet Colorado State Learning Standards and are reviewed and updated on an annual basis.

Last year, more than 450 students in 25 classrooms participated in our ELP programs. Schools from South Routt, Hayden, North Routt Charter School, and Steamboat Springs utilized this program that is offered free of charge to all public elementary schools in Routt County. More than 50% of the youth served through the ELP are from low and moderate-income households. ELP is a three-part program that includes a classroom session, an outdoor session, and a service-learning piece. Topics change from year-to-year and build upon each other.

TENS is a Colorado Parks and Wildlife curriculum that is site-based and was created specifically for schools in NW Colorado. SOLE is a CPW program that Yampatika is contracted to present in schools. Last year, 400 students participated in this program.

In February, Yampatika was awarded a three-year grant through the Yampa-White-Green Water Basin to offer design and offer water education programs in the basin. This grant includes outreach to school districts, developing curriculum, and implementing programs.

Other programs include one-time programs for elementary and high schools in the area on a wide range of topics. Yampatika also works in partnership with nonprofits like the Boys and Girls Club and others to offer after-school programming to their participants. Last year, more than 1,930 youth participated in these programs.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Yampatika’s adult field schools offer a wide range of year-round, hands-on outdoor activities, such as wildflower and medicinal herb walks, bird watching, geology hikes, watershed walks, and ski and snowshoe tours. Yampatika provides unique and quality services to residents and visitors that are offered in partnership with area businesses such as the Steamboat Ski and Resort Corporation, other nonprofits such as Tread of Pioneers Museum, and government agencies including the USFS. By ensuring that what we offer is partnership-driven and need-based, we avoid duplicating services with the many educational organizations in our community. Last year, more than 10,890 individuals participated in these programs.

Population(s) Served

Yampatika’s Environmental Learning Center (ELC) at Legacy Ranch resides on a 132-acre hay meadow. We provide service-learning opportunities, summer and winter camps, 4H livestock stewardship, and is a destination for many school field trips. Yampatika provides programs for youth and adults that create an appreciation for our community's history, ranching heritage, and the local environment. There are very few places left in close proximity to a town where children can take part in activities associated with ranching and farming. Adults can visit the site for a self-guided walking tour. Thanks to this innovative partnership between Yampatika and the City of Steamboat Springs, the site has transformed from just a historic homestead into an educational learning center that brings history, agriculture, environmental learning, open space preservation, sustainability, and community service to life. Last year, more than 600 people participated in programs at Legacy Ranch.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Yampatika goals for the year include;
• To have every K – 5 youth in NW Colorado public schools participate in quality Environmental Education programs.
• To have summer camp operate at 95% capacity or higher.
• To add 100 new adult program participants during each program season.
• To add five new program offerings for adults and families during the year.
• To have a 20% response rate on adult program evaluations.
• To offer at least two new programs for special needs populations during the year.

Our programs influence the lives of many residents and visitors to NW Colorado. Yampatika has three main program areas; advancing environmental literacy with youth; connecting people to nature, and providing experiential learning opportunities at Legacy Ranch.

Every fall, Yampatika Board and Staff engaged in an all-day Strategic Planning Retreat. This retreat builds upon the last strategic planning retreat. Topics from the 2019 retreat focused on refining Yampatika’s brand in the community, exploring the long-term viability of the Environmental Learning Center at Legacy Ranch, and increasing program capacity in all areas. The strategic plan is reviewed regularly by the Board and staff and adjusted accordingly. In 2020, the Board will work on a new strategic plan.

Yampatika has full and part-time staff to implement the organization's strategic and operating and fundraising plans.

Yampatika has been working on being proactive to adapt our goals and operating plans in light of the 2019 - 2020 pandemic and ripple effects from that. The organization expects this impact to continue through 2021. The Board has, therefore, decided to continue with its current strategic plan for an additional year.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, It is difficult to get honest feedback from the people we serve



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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Board of directors
as of 11/03/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Elliott Ludy

A. Scott Colby, CPA

Term: 2021 - 2024

Rachel Masters

Dax Mattox State Farm Ins

Donnie Haubert

Sleeping Giant Financial Services

Holly Hampson

Hello Heart

Liz Baldwin

UC Health/YVMC Heart and Vascular

Brett Bruyere

CO State University

Greg Friedman

FW Group, LLC

Matt Kaufman

Colorado Group Realty

Don Steck

Community Volunteer

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/3/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation


No data