About Us

Gazette Charities Foundation-El Pomar Foundation Empty Stocking Fund

The 41st annual Gazette Charities Foundation-El Pomar Foundation Empty Stocking Fund provides resources for local health and human service agencies in the Pikes Peak region on the front lines of helping people in crisis and assisting others in attaining self-sufficiency. Over the past 40 years, the Fund has raised more than $26 million. The Empty Stocking Fund team hopes to raise even more during the 2024-25 campaign season to meet the growing demand for services in our community.

The 2024-25 campaign will be held Thanksgiving Day through January 25, 2025.

Administrative costs are generously covered by The Anschutz Foundation, Gazette Charities Foundation, The Gazette, El Pomar Foundation, Pikes Peak Community Foundation, and Add Staff. Thanks to their contributions, 100% of the funds raised go directly to the agencies to support our neighbors in need.

Every dollar donated to the Empty Stocking Fund grows up to 45.3 percent through matching grants.

  • Bruni Foundation – Matches $1 for every $10 raised up to $100,000
  • Chapman Foundation – Matches $1 for every $5 raised up to $75,000
  • El Pomar Foundation – Matches $1 for every $3 raised up to $200,000

One donation. 20 agencies. A whole community served.

A donation to Empty Stocking Fund can transform lives. Every dollar donated to the campaign grows up to 45% through matching funds.

Meet the Empty Stocking Fund Staff

Deb Mahan

Executive Director, Gazette Charities Foundation

Deb moved to Colorado Springs, just after college with a degree in Neuropsychology and started her career as Executive Director of Support & Recovery Ministries and Community Engagement at First Presbyterian Church. She later served as Campaign Director for a US Congressional candidate and worked in the private sector, as VP of Residential Lending and Corporate Sponsorship at Kirkpatrick Bank. Currently, her work is in philanthropy, as Executive Director of Gazette Charities Foundation, an affiliate foundation with The Anschutz Foundation, granting funds in El Paso and Teller counties.

She has served on many boards and committees in her 25 + years in the community. Among them, CASA, COPPeR (Cultural Office of the Pikes Peak Region), Kids on Bikes (which she helped found), Children’s Literacy Center, Ormao Dance Company, UCHealth Memorial Hospital Foundation, and Pikes Peak Community Foundation.

Deb is a dancer (modern ballet) yoga instructor (vinyasa) runner (recreational) and cyclist (road). She and her son – an NCAA Lacrosse player – love spending as much time outside as they can, in our beautiful backyard of Colorado.

Kelly Spieker

Marketing Coordinator, The Gazette and Gazette Charities Foundation

A proud Colorado native and graduate of Pikes Peak State College, Kelly has always had a passion for storytelling and communication. She began her professional journey at The Gazette in sales, where she quickly distinguished herself with drive and determination. However, as she navigated the corporate landscape, she discovered a true passion for marketing and event-planning.

In 2022, Kelly took a brief hiatus from The Gazette to lend her talents to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Colorado Springs, an experience that further enriched her professional and personal growth. While at NAMI Colorado Springs, she worked tirelessly to raise awareness and support for mental health, a cause she feels deeply passionate about.

Outside of her professional life, Kelly is a talented dot mandala artist, a skill that requires patience, precision, and an eye for intricate patterns. This artistic endeavor is not just a hobby but also a part of her entrepreneurial spirit. Kelly owns a small business called the Adopted Alien Project, where she showcases and sells her unique “projects.” She is an avid Colorado Avalanche fan and loves to attend rock concerts, read and relax with her husband, Matthew, and their two furbabies, Spike and Buttons.

Amber Borata

Marketing Graphics Designer, The Gazette/Gazette Charities Foundation

Amber is the Marketing Graphic Designer at the Gazette and Gazette Charities Foundation. A lover of art and good design, she got her start doing graphic design work in the non-profit sector at a local church. She quickly realized that her passion for good design could lead to a fulfilling career and decided to pursue a degree in Multimedia and Graphic Design. Amber is also passionate about making a positive difference in the lives of others and has spent many hours volunteering with local organizations and abroad. She is excited to be part of the Empty Stocking Fund team, where both passions can combine in an impactful way.

Amber is an award-winning graphic designer, currently holding multiple Gold ADDYs (American Advertising Awards) for her work with branding and identity creation, publication design and marketing campaigns. For fun, she dabbles in interior design, music (singing and mixing) and finding the best restaurants in town. Any time spent with loved ones is time well spent – making happy memories with her husband and two children is her favorite pastime.

Empty Stocking Fund Advisory Board Members

Matt Carpenter

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
El Pomar Foundation

Liz Denson

Vice President of Community Engagement
Early Connections Learning Center

Margaret Dolan

Chief Executive Officer
Pikes Peak Community Foundation

John Eastman

CEO and Founder
Eastman Cognition Labs

Jenifer Furda

Director of Community Engagement
and Local Government

Michael Greene

Digital Sales Manager
The Gazette

Jack Gurr

Sr. Business Analyst
Former El Pomar Foundation Fellow

Jenny Stafford

GE Johnson Foundation

Craig Willis

Program Officer
Chapman Foundations Management, LLC
The Mary K. Chapman Foundation
H.A. & Mary K. Chapman Charitable Trust