Boulder Community Network
for the fiscal year
July 1, 1998 - June 30, 1999
3645 Marine Street
Campus Box 455
Boulder, CO 80309-0455
FAX: (303) 492-4198
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Mission & Objectives 3
Volunteer Statistics 3
BCN Focuses on Information Technology
Serving Community 4-6
BCN’s Homepage 3
One Stop Career Network 4
Virtual Chautauqua 4-5
BCN Services 6-7
Y2K Resources on BCN 6-7
BCN’s Public Outreach 7-8
BCN on TV 7
BCN Presentations 8
The Not-As-Visible Side of BCN 8
Technical Advisory Committee 8
Board Development 8
Fifth Anniversary Celebration 9-10
Rockies Box 11
TekMatch Milestones 13-15
Web Design Clients 16
Board of Directors 17
During 1998 and 1999, BCN continued to be an active part of bringing the Boulder County community together. We can look back at the past year and see significant gains, both in our services and our organizational development. Our volunteer program grew and our classes were consistently strong. We completed the One Stop Career Network grant, our second with the National Telecommunications and Infrastructre Administration (NTIA), and initiated the Virtual Chautauqua project with the CU School of Journalism. We also started the web design and communication component for BASIN, a new collaboration with the City of Boulder. In addition to these two big undertakings, BCN continues outreach projects like TekMatch and the Local INformation Connection (LINC).
This year BCN celebrated its Fifth Anniversary with an inaugural fundraising event and launched a corporate fundraising plan. We continue to grow and use technology to benefit the community.
Thanks to a concerted outreach efforts by staff, board and volunteers as ambassadors of BCN, the larger community is becoming more involved in our mission.
Mission & Objectives
BCN’s mission is to facilitate the broad use of information technology to benefit the community. With an emphasis on Internet technologies, BCN also is concerned with innovation for public sector applications.
Volunteer Statistics Objective 1: To transfer technology to community-based organizations, government agencies, educational institutions, and populations whose members encounter substantial barriers to technology use.
Objective 2: To help community-based organizations development online information in the public interest.
Objective 3: To innovate in the accomplishment of the above mission and objectives, based on the needs and issues of the public and non-profit sector.
BCN could not exist without its broad network of dedicated volunteers. Their input, ideas and generosity make BCN what it is. The following is a thumbnail description of the contributions of BCN’s volunteer backbone:
Volunteer Spotlight: http://bcn.boulder.co.us/volunteer/volspot.html 5,341 recorded hours year to date: 190 active volunteers started the year with 74 active volunteers
Volunteer Quotes: http://bcn.boulder.co.us/volunteer/quote3.html
BCN Focuses on Information Technology Benefiting the Community
For five years, BCN has facilitated information technology to benefit the community, and nowhere is that better exemplified than the BCN home page, which provides easily navigable, current information of interest to both local citizens and out-of-towners alike. This past year, BCN continued the mission by making online resources available to low-income and unemployed individuals via the "One Stop Career Network." We ventured into the arts field and started working with performing artists and arts organizations to bring their content to the World Wide Web via the "Virtual Chautauqua" project. With the BASIN (Boulder Area Sustainability Information Network) project, BCN will create a website to bring current environmental data online and accessible for researchers, community groups, and the general public.
BCN started the year with a new look on its home page. The puzzle pieces illustrate how BCN connects the community together with information, special projects and non-profit services. The BCN homepage averages 25,000 page requests per day. In one month, there were hits from 113 countries. BCN has 2,500 directories and more than 300 community groups taking advantage of BCN’s free webhosting. Listings and other information are kept up to date by volunteers and many times highlighted in the Current Community Events Center (http://bcn.boulder.co.us/topical/center.html). This keeps people coming back, as demonstrated by our 40-millionth page hit in April 1999!
One Stop Career Network
This was the 1996-1998 NTIA grant, which concluded September 30, 1998. The final parts of the grant fell into place as BCN worked with staff and clients of 14 agencies that have job assistance programs. The overall OSCN site saw fairly regular activity levels during 1997 and 1998, with an average of 2,283 page requests per week.
RESEARCH EVALUATION (excerpted here):
Full text see:http://bcn.boulder.co.us/oscn/researcheval.txt
Through this project BCN learned that child care was a huge concern for working parents, and it only seemed logical for people looking for jobs online, look for daycare as well. BCN assisted the City of Boulder Children’s Services with a comprehensive website that included tips for child care and a searchable map of child care agencies. "Staff and clients interviewed were usually aware of online employment and training related resources. They did not necessarily recognize the name "One Stop Career Network." Variation in Internet access, normative use of Internet tools, involvement in OSCN planning, intra organizational communications, and participation in OSCN training contributed to OSCN awareness."
"Staff Internet skills levels improved significantly between January 1997 and August of 1998. While a little more than half of those turning in both surveys were comfortable with email in 1997, almost all were comfortable with this tool in 1998. While 39% of this group were comfortable surfing in 1997, 76% were comfortable in 1998. And while only one person was comfortable checking for html errors in 1997, seven staff (19%) reported comfort with this skill in 1998."
"Clients interviewed were particularly pleased with the online job listings. This positive response to online listings coincides with statistical data from the OSCN web site which revealed that the job links early on became the most popular OSCN resource and remained so throughout the project. The job links pages received 49% of all page requests in September 1998, similar to all previous months."
Virtual Chautauqua Project
This $375,000 NTIA grant was awarded to the CU School of Journalism on October 1, 1999 and will continue through October 1, 2000. BCN administers the grant by managing the 15 partners and 150 artists whose work will be a part of Virtual Chautauqua.
Executive Summary http://bcn.boulder.co.us/vchautauqua/exec.html
The purpose of this project is to make Colorado performing arts available to isolated communities: rural K-12 schools and people with mobility challenging disabilities.
Project partners include: four Colorado traditional radio and television public media and performing arts sites, and disabilities and education related organizations. These strategic partnerships will forge the technological and social networks needed to make performing arts content available via streaming audio/video technologies on the World Wide Web.
The project will encourage and support interactivity between K-12 students and teachers, people with disabilities, and artists. Technical assistance will include Internet training for all, equipment and technical assistance such as RAM upgrades and software configuration for people with disabilities, and web site development awards and training for artists.
Virtual Chautauqua is an example of technology benefiting the community in what it enables for many Colorado constituencies: online samples of the work of Colorado performing artists; new channels for communication between artists and audience members; access to performing arts not before available to isolated communities; and new avenues of involvement for artists with disabilities, as well as the use of performing arts to educate about disabilities. The project will model strategies for cooperation among traditional radio and public TV media and community networks for integrated applications beyond the arts.
The project information is at: http://bcn.boulder.co.us/vchautauqua/
The artist and public site are on-line at http://www.virtualchautauqua.org
The Virtual Performing Arts Center : http://onestop.colorado.edu/vchautauqua
BASIN (Boulder Area Sustainability Information Network)
Jim Waterman, a BCN board member, led the application process for a two year grant from the EPA’s EMPACT (Environmental Monitoring for Public Access and Community Tracking) program, which aims to improve access to time-relevant environmental data. This is a collaborative project led by the City of Boulder. Other stakeholders include, the Watershed Initiative, CU, US Geological Survey, Division of Wildlife, Boulder Valley School District, CATV, Boulder County Health Department, and Healthy Community Initiative. The project began in January 1999.
Objectives:• Improve existing environmental monitoring to provide credible, timely and usable information about the Boulder County watershed to the public.The funding totals $400,000, with $25,000 coming to BCN over a two year period for its services in the following areas: Information Management and Communication. For information management BCN will be responsible for hosting and server maintenance. For the communication piece, BCN will work with Mark McCaffrey of the Watershed Initiative for web design, public surveys, and setting up the public kiosk. Our broad volunteer base allows us to work with several aspects of the project. This partnership will give BCN a lot of public visibility; but most importantly, the grant allows BCN to further fulfill its mission to bring information technology to the public.
• Create a state-of-the-art information management and public access infrastructure using advanced, web-based computer technologies.
• Build strong partnerships and an ongoing alliance of governmental, educational, non-profit and private entities involved in watershed monitoring, management and education.
• Develop education and communication programs to effectively utilize watershed information in the public media and schools and facilitate greater public involvement in public policy formation.
Among the visible benefits are the 23 new volunteers BCN has gained in the first four months of work on this project. They bring skills as teachers, GIS experts, and project management and give 70 hours a month collectively. The relationships they are building with community groups and their own resources will greatly enhance BCN’s visibility in the community.
This is BCN’s volunteer matching program, administered by BCN Volunteer Coordinator Jim Harrington. In light of our first mission, technology benefiting the community, BCN recognizes that many non-profit organizations could be more effective with technology. They are limited because of a lack of knowledge, funds or resources. Thus, TekMatch volunteers step in to aid an organization that otherwise may be left behind in the information age. BCN matched 26 Boulder County non-profit organizations with skilled volunteers for 43 projects in the past year. Projects included database design, networking computers, consulting, email troubleshooting, and configuring World Wide Web/Internet access. A list of organizations assisted and the types of projects is available in the Appendix. This year also marked the start of the Computer Exchange, a BCN-hosted website listing organizations and their needs, along with information on where donations of computer and other equipment can be taken.
Projects this year:
completed Currently active Currently requested web design (for non-profits) 40 22 7 training (in software and database) 4 4 1 technical assistance (hardware) 14 14 1 consulting (formal advising) 1 0 0 administrative (in-house work) 5 5 2 special (individualized projects) 3 8 0 TOTAL 67 53 11
Here’s what organizations are saying about how and why they got involved in BCN: http://bcn.boulder.co.us/volunteer/quote4.html
LINC: Local Information Connection
This is the database of over 200 countywide human service agencies, created after 600 volunteer hours by one of BCN’s most outstanding contributors, Roy Olsen. LINC contains program and contact information now available for case workers to use in referrals, and for the general public’s reference. We are really excited to have created and to host the site because of its broad range of uses.
Troy Kilen, a BCN volunteer, was contracted by the county to empower agencies to update their information and leading the project. In three classes, he trained representatives of non-profit organizations in the use of LINC, updating their organization’s listing, and how to use the Internet/World Wide Web in their work.
TOTAL LINC class participants 30
Y2K Resources on BCN
BCN volunteer Ernie Stiltner took on the creation and maintenance of a Y2K center following an effort to create such a resource by various community entities. BCN’s site is a remarkable collection of credible links and focuses on community building and non-profits’ Y2K issues.
BCN’s Public Outreach
Free and low-cost classes taught by BCN volunteers continue to be the most important way for BCN to introduce people to the World Wide Web. Both the classes and the volunteer instructors continue to get good reviews and participants do feel they fill a need.
Classes:Basic Surf the Web
Both classes were taught in Spanish at various times.Basic HTML
BCN ON TV
Community television stations in Denver and Boulder provide a solid partnership in the Virtual Chautauqua project. They also proved to be outlets for BCN to get the word out to the public.
In February, Executive Director Brenda Ruth and Anniversary Event Coordinator Ellen Oh did a 30 minute piece on "Reach out Speak Out" community forum on CATV-Boulder. They spoke about the Anniversary Event and the importance of technology in the community. In March, BCN was featured on a call-in show on DCTV in Denver regarding the Virtual Chautauqua project. Board Member and Director of CU’s Information Technology Services Department, Ken Klingenstein interviewed Fred Baker, the president of the Internet Task Force and a Cisco fellow. The two parts of the interview titled, "The Future of the Internet" will be aired in July 1999.
Director Ruth also took advantage of other publicity opportunities within such kindred organizations as the Non-Profit Internet Users Group and Boulder Community Foundation. She discussed how BCN is in the forefront of the new world of "virtual volunteering," and practical ways for non-profits to capitalize on the resources on the World Wide Web/Internet for working with volunteers. In April, the Community Foundation hosted a workshop with national non-profit financial consultant Kim Klein and again, BCN was part of the panel describing how to build community using the Web/Internet. It proved to be a great opportunity to promote BCN’s services and to learn more about the concerns of other non-profit organizations.
The Not-As-Visible Side of BCN
Technical Advisory Committee
Chaired by BCN board member and volunteer Jim Waterman, the committee has looked at several issues, in particular the question of forms, domain name hosting, security, e-commerce and chat or interactive communication software. The Technical Advisory Committee recommends policy and procedural changes to keep up with the changing world and demands of information technology.
The BCN Board added one new member during 1998-99. It looked at time commitments and decided on a new approach for meetings and a structure to encourage ongoing participation and support of BCN. Elements of this include:• Quarterly, instead of monthly meetings;BCN looks forward to adding three new board members in July 1999. A complete listing of the current members is in the Appendices.
• Monthly meetings by a management team, comprised of the executive committee and other interested members, to advise and guide the Executive Director;
• Creating a BCN advisory board. While they do not have decision making powers, these advisors will be encouraged to attend meetings and to share their expertise. It is the Board’s hope that these individuals will serve as ambassadors promoting BCN and share their time and other resources as much as possible on behalf of BCN’s operations.
Fundraising is the lifeblood of all non-profit organizations. During 1998-99, BCN began new and ambitious efforts in this arena, expanding activities to secure new funding from both public and private sources. BCN is largely grant-dependent, but the past year presented new opportunities to bring in many new "Friends of BCN," our program for individual and corporate giving. These donors are recognized on the BCN home page with a listing on a scrolling animated banner that includes the company’s logo as well as its name.
One successful new fundraising approach this past year was made possible through the generosity of ACX Technologies. Its donation of a private box at a Colorado Rockies game enabled BCN to entice other donors. The most ambitious new fundraising activity undertaken this year was BCN’s first-ever awards dinner and Fifth Anniversary Celebration. In all, donations this past year from companies, foundations and individuals totalled $26,901. BCN is very grateful to all of its supporters, each and every one of which truly enables us to be a "communty" network.
General Gifts & Donations $12,131 Income from Services $11,438 Special Fundraising Events* $14,746 Federal NTIA Grant $36,375 Other Grants $1,300 Interest & Misc. Income $726 TOTAL Income $76,692 EXPENSES
Payroll & Benefits $54,645 Operations $9,372 TOTAL Expenses $64,017 TOTAL $12,621
* 5th Anniv. Event, Rockies Box
BCN’s Fifth Anniversary Party
With the theme of – what else? – "Technology Serving Community," this was the first ever fundraising and awards dinner for BCN. Thanks to the skills of Special Event Coordinator Ellen Oh, numerous volunteers and a lot of advance work, staff considers this first effort to be a booming success. A sold out crowd of 210 networked at a reception held at NCAR on Table Mesa Mountain. The awards dinner and ceremony featured an slide presentation on BCN’s accomplishments during its first five years, awards for innovative websites and representation by a broad spectrum of BCN volunteers and supporters.
There were seven award categories. The first to be presented went to two businesses who tied for the honor of "Extraordinary Support of Technology in Community by a Business." XOR and Leopard Communications were recognized for lending their high-tech expertise and resources to local community groups. XOR provides discounted web services to non-profits and release time for its employees so they can volunteer for community projects. Leopard developed and supports the Women of the West Museum’s website.
Competition for "The Best Boulder County Website" was fierce. Boulder’s Blue Mountain Arts has an extremely popular website where you can send an electronic greeting card, but the Longmont Humane Society walked away with the award after receiving an impressive number of last minute votes. As Emcee Joe Pezzillo joked, "When you’re on the Internet, no one knows what breed you are." That is, unless you’re online at the Humane Society!
Among governmental websites, the City of Boulder’s Mountain Parks received the honors for "Most Effective Use of the Internet by a Government Organization." Its site features online signups, maps and, of course, some of the most stunning scenery around.
In the online world of Boulder County schools, Centaurus High School’s website was awarded for its "Innovative Use of the Internet in K-12 Education." A student club created the site, which includes a virtual tour of the school.
BCN Volunteer Coordinator Jim Harrington presented two special awards to outstanding volunteers Roy Olsen and Don Kava. Roy Olsen was recognized for single-handedly creating the LINC search engine for BCN and inputting hundreds of listings for non-profit and governmental agencies. Don Kava, who has been with BCN almost since the beginning, received honors as the most Dedicated Volunteer.
Nominations and voting for the winners had been conducted entirely by email and electronic balloting at a special BCN web page. The nominees had been chosen by a blue-ribbon panel of nine individuals from local business, high tech and the governmental and non-profit sectors. Everyone at the awards dinner was able to see the winning websites in a live online presentation, thanks to our trusty Mac Powerbook and a traveling LCD projector, manned by volunteer John Freidrich
No matter who won, the event and awards helped familiarize countless Web surfers with BCN and many other Boulder County organizations commercial and non-profit alike that have a presence online.
ACX Technologies of Boulder donated a box at the Rockies-Mariners game in September 1998. Fifteen people enjoyed the intimate setting and a winning game!
As BCN enters its sixth year of operation, its staff, volunteers and supportors can pride themselves on having established a diverse, dynamic and useful community resource online. More people than ever before are visiting, volunteering for and supporting BCN and its mission of information technology serving community. With this foundation, the future is promising for the continued growth of community networking in Boulder County, Colorado, USA. During fiscal 1999-2000, we hope to build upon the advances made in the past year in fundraising and organizational development, and to further broaden BCN’s base of support and community involvement.
Created a new contract to clarify costs and liability
Alternatives for YouthBCN
potential CDOT grant Ride Board CGI
Boulder County Fair
Boulder County Prevention Connection
technical assistance web design
Boulder County Legal Services
network / ISP Hook up
Boulder County Shelter for the Homeless
hardware install software network
Boulder Energy Conservation
web page improvements
Boulder Museum of Contemporary ArtCenter for People with Disabilitites
hardware, technical assistance technical assistance
technical assistance - e-mail
Colorado Council on the Arts
training surf the web classes for artists and advanced HTML design class for artists
web - redirect
training on filemaker pro technical assistance on internet explorer
Colorado State University Cooperative Extension
wed design training & tutoring
network database may need grant 4 to complete between three offices in county
Family Learning Center
tech basic computer skill classes network
hardware / network
Kalmia Community Center
Land and Water of Colorado
Longmont Senior Center
network hardware fixes
web site hardware
Voices for Children
web design CGI
Women’s Wilderness Institute
Workforce Boulder County
training technical assistance
Web Design Clients FY 1998 - 1999AAUW
Action Counseling Services
Alternatives for Youth
Boulder Business and Profession Women
Boulder International Music Festival
Boulder Community Foundation
Boulder Competitive Girls Softball
Boulder County Prevention Connection
Boulder Housing Coalition
Boulder Mountain Parks
Boulder UNICEF and UNA - Landmines
Boy Scouts packs 68/ 72 / 159
Child and Family Advocacy Center
City of Boulder
Coal Creek Rotary Club -Louisville
Colorado Artists Showcase
Colorado State University Cooperative Extension
Family Learning Center
Friendship City Project
Habitat for Humanity - St. Vrain
Humanists of Colorado - Boulder
Human Services Alliance
Interfaith Council on Churches
League of Women Voters
Learning to Read
Our Town Community Gathering
Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center
Student Environmental Action Coalition
Voices for Children
Winding Trail Community Association
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
President: Neal McBurnett
Software Engineer, Bell Labs/Lucent Technologies
Vice President: Jim Waterman
Technical Advisory Committee Chair
Secretary: Pierre Malraison
Senior Software Engineer, Spatial Technology
Treasurer: Eric Gertler
Director of Finance , KBkids.com
Planning Committee Chair
General Board Members
Philip L. Dubois, P.C.
Director, Business Development & Technology Transfer
Director of Internet Development
ACX Technologies Inc., CPA
Vice President, Marketing
Ken Klingenstein, Past President
Director, Information Technology Services
University of Colorado at Boulder
Art Rifkin, Past Treasurer
Retired Engineer, Grumman Aerospace