Our Story & Legacy


About Us - Our Story & Legacy

IMG_20681Our STORY began in 1959 when the organization was incorporated as Colorado Boys Ranch Foundation, a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit entity.  The organization has since served over 14,000 youth plus their families from Colorado and across the nation.

Known as “CBR”, the organization evolved over the next 50 years from a rural orphanage into a national, award winning residential treatment and education center for adolescent boys.  With an 89% success rate, the organization achieved many national awards and recognition including:

  • Samaritan Institute-Colorado Ethics in Business Award for Non-Profits
  • Two time recipient of the El Pomar Outstanding Youth Organization Award
  • Numerous features on NBC Nightly news, Animal Planet and Discover Channel

In 2006, the Federal Deficit Reduction Act triggered a dramatic reduction in federal and state funding for residential programs across the nation.  This ACT was subsequently followed by the national recession and more federal and state funding cuts for residential programs.

In 2012, the long-standing campus residential program was sadly discontinued.  Many thanks and appreciation is extended to the loyal staff, board members and donors who provided devotion and dedication to the success of the residential program and campus for over 50 years.

In 2014, the main campus in La Junta, Colorado was sold to GOAL Academy for use as an education resource for their alternative school.  As part of the sale arrangement, a Heritage Center, preserving and honoring the history of the residential program, will be established on the La Junta campus.

IMG_0665aaToday, our expertise and resources are devoted to helping Colorado boys, girls, parents and families right in their homes, schools and local communities. Our modern name, CBR YouthConnect, was chosen to more clearly reflect what we do. “CBR” refers to our legacy. “Youth” refers to our focus. We “connect” them with the help and resources needed to become hopeful and productive citizens.

This story is available in our book, The Hero Within (Fulcrum Press, 2007), authored by Cindy Landsberg and Judith Pettibone. The story, decade-by-decade, is also available in our Rancher 50th Anniversary publication.   This website contains the many, wonderful programs and services that continue the story.

IMG_1901The LEGACY of the Colorado Boys Ranch Foundation continues to be our results, resilience and commitment to the mission of serving troubled youth with the highest of professional standards.  For more than five decades, the organization has successfully evolved and adapted to meet the changing needs, funding constraints and demands of our society.   The organization continues to demonstrate that Caring Brings Results.

Click to view a copy of the 50th Anniversary Rancher Newsletter or the FALL 2014 Newsletter.

To view information about The Hero Within book, click here.