Mary Lou Makepeace

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Mary Lou Makepeace, Colorado Springs’ first female mayor, was elected in 1997 and re-elected in 1999. As mayor in a Council-Manager form of government, she led a 9-member city council, served as chairman of the board of Colorado Springs Utilities and provided oversight to the city owned Memorial Hospital. Makepeace was known for her open and innovative leadership. She initiated the successful Springs Community Action Program (SCIP) engaging hundreds of citizens in prioritizing capital improvements needs in the city resulting in citizen approval of the largest bond .

Post Mayor Career[edit]

Term limited in 2003, she joined the Gill Foundation becoming the Executive Director of the Gay & Lesbian Fund for Colorado, distributing millions of dollars to nonprofits across the state of Colorado.

She continued her affiliation with philanthropy and nonprofit organizations in the Pikes Peak area when she became Executive Director of the highly successful Indy Give! campaign raising over $1 million in the last two months of 2013.

She currently is on the faculty of the political science department at UCCS.

Expanded Description[edit]

Her resume’ includes serving as executive director of Leadership Pikes Peak, adjunct faculty at the Center for Creative Leadership, caseworker at the El Paso County of Social Services, executive director of the Community Council of the Pikes Peak Region, and executive director of STAY, a child placement agency.

Other experiences include teaching at the American School in Tananarivo, Madagascar, Assistant to the Defense Attache’ at the American Embassy in Prague, Czechoslovakia, following the Soviet invasion, and as adult education officer at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany.

Mary Lou has served on a variety of state, local and national committees including the Board of Governors of Colorado State University, Colorado Space Advisory Committee, the Policy Advisory Council of the America Power Association, the Energy Committee of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. She is a founding board member of Artemis Women and the Women’s Chamber of Southern Colorado.

She attended the Harvard University Program for State & Local Government. She earned a Masters of Public Administration from the University of Colorado Colorado Springs and her bachelors degree in journalism and political science from the University of North Dakota.

She was inducted to the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame in 2009. Other recognition includes the Athena Award, Colorado College Community Diversity Award, Denver Business Journal’s Outstanding Woman in Business, Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce Outstanding Community Service Award, The Mary Jean Larson Community Service Award and numerous others. She has lived, worked and raised her family in Colorado Springs since 1973.

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