Mission & Vision

Better News for All Coloradans

At the Colorado News Collaborative, our vision is an informed and engaged civil society.

Our mission is to be a local media resource hub and ideas lab that serves all Coloradans by strengthening high-quality local journalism, supporting civic engagement, and ensuring public accountability.

Our Story

In the fall of 2018, a handful of Colorado news outlets gathered to talk about an idea. What might happen if they worked together on stories, on understanding their communities more deeply, and on sharing resources?

At the same time, a group of community members led by the University of Denver and the Gates Family Foundation were poring over research from that summer, when they’d surveyed thousands of Coloradans about what they wanted and needed in local news. And the 142-year old Colorado Press Association was making plans with the Colorado Independent to evolve both organizations’ missions to strengthen journalism across the state.

From these three efforts came COLab, the Colorado News Collaborative.

In just six months, starting the Spring 2020, COLab grew from a launch of 22 news outlets to nearly 100. We are rural, urban and suburban; newspapers, websites, radio and television; serving all Colorado communities — including tribal communities, communities of color, Spanish-speaking communities and other traditionally underserved communities.

We collaborate on journalism none could do alone. And we don’t stop there. We strived to pull back the curtain on how news is reported, and invite the public into the process. And we work to financially strengthen existing and emerging news sources, so they are there for their communities long into the future.

Perhaps no year could have shown the need for trustworthy news the way 2020 did. Through the pandemic, racial justice protests, economic crisis and political polarization, more people turned to their local news sources.

COLab’s mission is crucial and complex, but the ultimate aim of COLab is simple: Better news for all Coloradans.