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Superintendent Chris Smith on the Summer Leadership Academy

Hello, everyone. I hope you all have been enjoying the history and stories from the Foundation’s 30th anniversary these past few months. 

I’d like to tell you a little bit about one of my favorite programs that the Foundation has funded, and that’s the Summer Leadership Academy. This program was made possible through the collaboration of not just Cherry Creek Schools and the Foundation, but the dedication of community leaders who also believe in these students’ ability to create positive change in our world.

This program was established to support CCSD students affected by violence and crime in our community, helping them re-engage with education and their community while preventing youth violence through a grassroots approach. This program not only changes lives, but saves them.

These students are incredible. They inspire me with their courage, their leadership, and their commitment. Over the past two years, these students have pushed themselves to do better – not just for themselves, but because they believe in the community that surrounds them: our community. Our students need and deserve to feel that they belong, and that the adults around them believe in their ability to succeed and care about them.

When I met with Kanye Herron, an Endeavor Academy graduate who advocated for this program, he told me that his hopes and dreams were that students felt loved. I had the chance to speak to the students in the Summer Leadership Academy at their transition ceremony, when we celebrated their transition into leaders of the next group of students. I heard from those students how impactful this program was to them, how much they had grown as a result of being part of that community. In the words of one of the students: “This program helped me by showing me what true caring and community means. My classmates are there to push me up, and we have each other’s back.”

That is the promise of Cherry Creek Schools, one supported by our Foundation and community. When we show students that they are loved, safe, and supported – there is no limit to what they can accomplish for themselves, for their community, and for our world.

-Christopher A. Smith, Superintendent of Cherry Creek Schools


Learn more about the Summer Leadership Academy.

Our Impact This Year

  • Grants Awarded to Educators


  • Students Impacted


  • Scholarships Awarded


  • Donated to Mental Health


  • JHL Constructors
  • United Healthcare
    United Healthcare
  • Westerra Credit Union
  • Ed and Kacy Adams
    Ed and Kacy Adams

    Ed and Kacy Adams

  • Margie and Joe Adams
    Margie and Joe Adams

    Margie and Joe Adams

  • DLR Group

    DLR Group

  • Aurora Housing Authority
    Aurora Housing Authority

    Aurora Housing Authority

  • CCA Foundation
  • Johnson Controls
    Johnson Controls

    Johnson Controls

  • Health One
  • Aon
  • 1st Bank
  • MDC Richmond Foundation
  • CCS Facility Services
  • CU Denver
    CU Denver
  • Butler Snow
  • Stifel
  • ANB Bank
    ANB Bank

    ANB Bank

  • Plante Moran
  • Saunders
  • Adolfson & Peterson Construction
  • MA Meyer Construction
  • GTC Construction
    GTC Construction
  • Aurora Chamber of Commerce
    Aurora Chamber of Commerce
  • Kore


  • Kaiser Permanente
    Kaiser Permanente
  • JP Morgan
    JP Morgan

    JP Morgan

  • Alpine Bank
  • Credit Union of Colorado
    Credit Union of Colorado
  • Cuningham Architecture
  • OS Schools
    OS Schools
  • Jacobs
  • Hord Coplan Macht
  • Meteor Education
  • Knoll Team
  • Jacobs
  • CCEA
  • BC Interiors
  • Hilltop Securities
  • Piper Sandler & Co
  • RBC Capital Markets
  • RTA
  • Meteor Education
  • Haselden
© 2024 Cherry Creek Schools Foundation

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