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Howard Gelt Memorial Fellowship


The NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado Foundation is pleased to announce creation of the Howard Gelt Memorial Fellowship. This fellowship will be offered in honor of Howard Gelt, who passed away in 2016.  Howard was one of the founders of NARAL's political arm and was the inspiration for the creation and launch of our Men's Leadership Council, which was created in 2013.  Howard was a long-time supporter and advocate for women's reproductive rights.

The fellowship will be a renewable annual fund designed to offer a student a paid fellowship at NARAL, inspiring future generations of young activists and advocates with an opportunity lead in reproductive rights.  NARAL offers summer and semester-long fellowship opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and professional school students.  This stipend will enable more students to incorporate an internship experience into their academic work and will be established beginning Fall 2017.

Howard Gelt was a longtime political leader in Colorado. He was an attorney specializing in commercial and residential real estate development and transactions, mostly recently as a partner for Akerman LLP’s Denver office, and previously with Polsinelli PC, and Sherman and Howard. He was active politically throughout his career, working as the senior chief of staff for Gov. Richard Lamm and as chairman of the finance committee for Gov. Roy Romer. He also served as chairman of the state Democratic Party in the early 1990s and played a role in the 1992 election of President Bill Clinton. Gelt served on the finance committee for U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet.  Gelt was known as a 'behind the scenes political force' and he had a strong influence on Colorado politics.

He was also committed to students and young people.  Governor Dick Lamm said, "I gave Howard his first job out of law school, helping run the Student Practice program at the University of Denver School of Law,” Lamm said. "I watched Howard bloom and grow and he was soon running the whole program. He loved the students and the students loved him.”

This fellowship is an opportunity to continue Howard Gelt's legacy as a political force, inspiring young people and protecting women's reproductive rights.
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