Our Mission

Colorado Rising is powering a grassroots movement to protect our health, safety, quality of life, and the future of our climate from the harms and impacts of oil and gas operations.

Who We Are


Colorado Rising is a statewide 501(c)4 non-profit organization that works to protect Colorado’s health, safety, wildlife, environment, and the future of our climate from the impacts of oil & gas development.

The organization was founded in September, 2016, as a small grassroots group and began laying the groundwork to run a statewide ballot initiative that would create safer setbacks from oil & gas operations.

In 2018, Colorado Rising led efforts to get Initiative 97/Prop 112 on the ballot. Initiative 97/Prop 112 aimed to create a mandatory minimum setback of 2500 feet for all new oil & gas operations away from homes, schools, hospitals, parks, playgrounds, open spaces, and water sources. In just a few short months, we mobilized hundreds of volunteers to engage in the monumental effort of gathering the minimum necessary number of signatures - at least 135,000 signatures from valid registered Colorado voters - to make the ballot. Throughout the signature gathering phase of the campaign, we faced an onslaught of spending and intimidation tactics by the opposition. Despite the odds, we gathered and submitted over 172,000 signatures to get Initiative 97 on the ballot.

Although we were outspent roughly 50:1(!) by industry opposition and lost at the polls by a mere ~5%, we realized we had made an impact by collecting many more than the minimum number of signatures required to make the ballot, and by generating over 1.1million votes in support at the polls!

Since then, we have expanded our work into community organizing to fight local oil & gas development projects, and created a c3 sister organization called Colorado Rising for Communities that includes a robust public education program, outreach efforts, and a litigation strategy to continue the critical work of protecting our homes, neighbors, communities, air, water and climate from the harms of fossil fuels.

Commitment to People

We honor diversity. Our board of directors and leadership team is 60% women and BIPOC-led with representation from Latinx, Chicano, Indigenous, African American, LGBTQ and non-binary genders. We are not only committed to increasing diversity, inclusion and representation within our organization at all levels, but within the climate movement as well.

colonialism is a current ongoing process

Land acknowledgement

Colorado Rising and Colorado Rising for Communities honors and acknowledges that we reside on the traditional and unceded territories of the Ute, Cheyenne, and Arapaho Peoples. We also recognize the 48 contemporary Indigenous Tribes and Nations who have historically called Colorado home and support the return of indigenous lands to its original native inhabitants.

We pay our respects to Elders past, present, and future, and to all those who have stewarded the land, air, and water for generations.

We affirm that this acknowledgment expresses our commitment to protect the health, safety, quality of life, and future of vibrant Indigenous communities from the injustices of environmental racism along with the exploitation of their precious lands while upholding their sacred relation to our delicate environment.

Meet The Board



Board President

An activist for over 50 years and a nontraditional educator for 25, Harv has an MA in Ecopsychology and Environmental Leadership and has worked with such orgs as PSR-Colorado, the Environmental Health Project, Sierra Club, and the Colorado Division of Wildlife. His current focus is on fossil fuels, and environmental and health justice.


Tricia Olson

Board Member, Treasurer

As the organization's founder, Tricia resides in an area that is under direct rhreat of large-scale fracking operations and is currently impacted by poor air quality from fracking in neighboring counties.

tree, leaves, autumn-1658814.jpg

Will Walters

Board Member

Will Bio here


Steve Douglas

Board Member

Steve served 8 years as a Commerce City Council Member At-Large, and participated in over a dozen advisory boards and committees. He is actively involved in the present and future visions of infrastructure and air quality throughout Commerce City.


Cynthia Allison

Board Member

As a teenager, Cynthia organized and managed a neighborhood recycling collection point and was involved in city planning hearings. After retiring from a career in IT, Cynthia has focused on raising awareness of the impacts of fracking. She has testified at numerous local and state commission hearings and has played an active role in state agency rulemaking processes regarding fracking and air quality. She is also on the leadership team of The Lookout Alliance.