Mortenson at Heart of Sterling Ranch Development

Sterling Ranch Mortenson #1is a 3400-acre mixed-use greenfield development project that will provide over 12,000 housing units at build-out, a town center, parks / open space and regional trail amenities as well as civic, retail and commercial facilities all in the context of an integrated master plan.

In 2014, Sterling Ranch selected Mortenson to be the construction manager for this new master-planned community in Southwest Denver. Mortenson has done similar work for other large communities including its work at the Stapleton Redevelopment over the past 15 years.

Mortenson’s role on this project is multi-faceted including construction management, general contracting, design-build and development services. In these roles, they provide services to three primary customers operating under the overall direction of Sterling Ranch Development.

The customers include Sterling Ranch Development Company, Sterling Ranch Community Authority Board (an authority formed from seven metropolitan districts), and Dominion Water & Sanitation District (a utility district formed to provide wholesale water and sanitation facilities to Sterling Ranch), as well as the homebuilders.

“Sterling Ranch is one of the largest residential developments in Douglas County and we are proud to be a part of it,” said Josh Williams, construction executive of the Denver Operating Group of Mortenson.  “We’ve got a solid construction team onsite and are working in close partnership with the county, Sterling Ranch and other organizations involved in the development. It is a true collaboration.”
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The infrastructure associated with Mortenson’s current filing (just a piece of the 12,000 total home build out) includes subdivision grading and utilities, a 1.2-million gallon water tank and off-site water line, sewage lift station and force main along with wastewater treatment plant improvements, an off-site storm water detention pond and outfall, landscape and park improvements. In addition, Mortenson is working on drainage channel improvements that lay the groundwork for a future earthen dam and raw water storage facility.

The first lots of homes will be available to homebuilders in the fall of 2016. Mortenson is currently planning work for the second and third subdivisions.

For more information on this project, check out this profile: Colorado’s First 21 Century Development.

For more information on Mortenson Denver, visit

Q&A with Cathy Avigiris, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Comcast Cable

Cathy A HeadshotWhat is your role at Comcast?

I am the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Comcast Cable.  My job description says I oversee all functional, programmatic and financial operations for Comcast Cable, but the day-to-day role is really about two things: understanding the investments we need to make today to ensure we remain a growing business in the future, and effectively operating the business today to ensure we have the revenue we need to make future investments.

I’ve been a part of Comcast for more than 20 years, and this experience has shown me how the right investments continue to bear fruit in the long term.  I was part of the team that built our Internet service, and I continue to be amazed at how innovation drives new products, services and ideas that couldn’t have come to life without this network platform.  I feel the same way about the talented people I’ve worked with.  Investing in developing the next generation of leaders is one of my key roles at Comcast, because the people we are hiring and growing today are the ones who will continue to drive our innovation efforts into the future.

What does being a member of the Northwest Douglas County EDC mean to Comcast? How does the company support business/economic development in this region?

Partnerships with business organizations – like with the Northwest Douglas County EDC – are critical to building and strengthening our communities.  Comcast is a company focused on connecting individuals, businesses and other organizations with each other and our local communities through our products and services.  Through our innovation, investment and involvement in organizations like yours, we are able to share our industry expertise and resources, be engaged in dialogue on the relevant issues impacting Northwestern Douglas County, and help our local communities thrive.
You were recently named a keynote speaker for the CTA Women in Technology conference in June. What insights do you plan to share with this group?

I am so honored to have the opportunity to share my career journey with the amazing women of the Colorado Technology Association.  The theme they have chosen for this gathering, Rising Together, is so powerful, and aligns with what I am planning to share.  I believe that building great teams is foundational to success.  I’ve never been afraid to hire people smarter than me, to develop them, to learn from them, and then let them be my tentacles.  There’s an African proverb that says: if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, take others with you. This is one way we rise together. 

What has been your journey as a woman in the technology field?

I spent six years working for a forklift manufacturing company – not the sexiest business, but I learned a lot.  I remember taking a distributor through the forklift plant one day, and our plant manager was explaining how the patented hydraulics system worked.  The distributor leaned over to me and said, “This must all be Greek to you.”  As the proud daughter of Greek immigrants, fluent in the language and culture, I said, “Trust me, if it were Greek, it would be easy!”  But I realized that — as a woman — I was underestimated at what I could know about technology.  Quite frankly, that perception bothered me, and I didn’t want it to continue as I grew in my career.  From that day on, I made sure to show I was willing to learn all I could about technology.  Many wonderful Comcast engineering colleagues invested their time and energy answering question after question.  The result — I spent ten years launching and managing two of Comcast’s fastest growing products, High-Speed Internet and Phone.

What is your advice for young women entering the technology field today?

I have a personal motto that I strive to live by every day, one that I’ve passed on to my sons to live by as well.  “We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”  Naturally, this bit of inspiration is from the brilliant Greek philosopher Aristotle.  So first and foremost, my advice is to make a habit of being excellent. 

Community-Minded Schomp Automotive Group Celebrates 75 Years with Grand Opening of New Dealerships in Northwest Douglas County

The Schomp Automotive Group will celebrate its 75th year in May 2016 with the opening of three new dealerships including the relocation of Schomp Honda and Schomp MINI from the current South Broadway campus to Highlands Ranch in Northwest Douglas County.

These new world-class facilities will join Schomp BMW (located at Lucent Blvd. off C-470) on a 38-acre campus and house the largest new and used vehicle inventories in the state of Colorado. In addition, Schomp is opening a new Mercedes-Benz of Farmington, Utah dealership – its first dealership located outside of Colorado.

Family-owned and operated for four generations, Schomp has a rich history in Colorado. It began in 1941 when Roy Weaver established Arapahoe Motors on South Broadway and launched a Denver automobile group that would eventually include his son-in-law, Ralph Schomp. A veteran of World War II, Ralph graduated with a degree in architecture, but jobs in his field were difficult to come by in post-war Denver.  He began working for his father-in-law and purchased Arapahoe Motors in 1955, which over the years became Ralph Schomp, Inc.

In 1988, Lisa Schomp, Ralph’s daughter, and her husband, Mark Wallace, took the reins of the dealership and ran the company for 20 years before handing over the day-to-day operations for the entire dealership to their son, Aaron Wallace, in 2008. 

Giving back to the community has been a longtime Schomp family tradition and Aaron continues this legacy by partnering with a significant number of community causes and nonprofits throughout Colorado.

For the last 25 years, Schomp has held The Children’s Hospital Colorado Sales Event to benefit the Children’s Colorado Burn Program (Schomp has donated over $275,000). Schomp’s partnership with Children’s Colorado began with the Annual Fire Truck Parade & Muster 30 years ago and the desire to have educational activities around the topic of fire safety.

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In addition, the dealership is the annual Presenting sponsor of the Schomp BMW Polo Classic, which benefits the Denver Active 20-30 Children’s Foundation, and has partnered with Love Hope Strength, the world’s largest Rock and Roll Cancer Foundation since 2009. Love Hope Strength has added 129,462 possible lifesaving donors to the bone marrow registration. Schomp car donations have been instrumental in helping locate a total of 2,117 matches to date, with 11 of these matches coming directly from Schomp-sponsored events including Denver Fashion Week, and UMS (Underground Music Showcase).

As a major partner of the Highlands Ranch Community Association (HCRA), Schomp participates in HRCA events year-round, providing parade vehicles, kids’ booths and Volunteers. Schomp is also a sponsor of the Downtown Denver Partnership and is a major partner of area public education foundations and the Historic Downtown Littleton Merchants.

These are just a few examples of how Schomp’s community-minded ownership extends beyond its car dealerships. A full list of organizations that the company supports can be found here:

For more information on Schomp Automotive Group visit:

Art + Business ONE Brings a Holistic Approach to Community Branding at Sterling Ranch

For Art + Business ONE developing a brand image for Sterling Ranch was not just about creating a logo, website and marketing collateral. Instead, it was about creating a brand that connects people to the differentiating aspects of the new master planned community.  This includes how the brand is manifested through community experiences, and communicating those experiences via marketing that resonates with a broad, yet highly targeted, range of audiences.  

Art + Business ONE began working with Sterling Ranch in July 2014. After an initial visioning session with the owners of Sterling Ranch, they created 10 messaging elements that represent the unique characteristics of this new community: education, energy, health, home, lifestyle, outdoors, safety, technology, time and water.

The main theme that is communicated throughout Sterling Ranch and its brand is the duality of stewardship. The owners are not only stewards of the area’s natural surroundings, but also of enhancing the quality of life for the residents of the community.SR-logo-brand-elements

The Sterling Ranch logo was designed with this theme in mind. The duality of stewardship is represented through the two interlocking shapes and each point represents one of the eight villages of Sterling Ranch. Paramount Center, the ninth village and heart of the community, is represented by the sunlight shining through the center of the logo.

Last year, the Sterling Ranch website, developed in partnership by Art + Business ONE and Siemens, received a 2015 MAME Award for Best Community Website. The website’s mobile first strategy ensures that people get the full story of Sterling Ranch including all of the amenities in a communicative platform that is easily digestible on a tablet, mobile phone or PC.

“We’ve created the foundation, the backbone, the platform for the community’s digital venues now and in the future,” said Ethan Demby, program and content director at Art + Business ONE. “For a prospective resident using the current marketing website, or a future resident logging in to pay their utility bills, the experience will be seamless.”

Art + Business ONE was founded in 1975 by Lance Jackson who has over 40 years of experience in branding for the real estate industry. Jackson and Demby are both Colorado natives who, along with the other company’s partners, are invested in working with new communities in Colorado to nurture the best quality of life and provide a showcase of what makes this state so great.

“The owners of Sterling Ranch bring a high level of integrity to this project in making sure this is a community that is done right – bolstering the quality of life for its residents,” said Ethan Demby. “As an integrated marketing firm, our philosophy is to bring together the community, strategy and visual assets and ensure they are all expressed the same way through marketing.”

The company will continue to work with Sterling Ranch on establishing and implementing a holistic approach to community branding that includes extending the brand for each of its nine villages via interactive exhibit areas throughout the community and how that is communicated in ads, brochures and other venues.

For more information on Art + Business ONE, visit


Martin/Martin Expands Footprint in Northwest Douglas County

As a full-service civil and structural engineering and surveying firm, Martin/Martin has been involved in a number of high profile projects in the Denver Metro Area for over 70 years. The Colorado State Capitol Dome project, Saint Joseph Hospital Heritage project, Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Denver Performing Art Complex are just a few of the many projects that the company has completed since its inception.

Martin/Martin has also been invested in Douglas County, Colorado since the beginning and one of its long-standing clients in the Northwest Douglas County area is Lockheed Martin, where they serve as the company’s civil and structural engineering firm.

MJohn Mooreore recently, the company has been working in Northwest Douglas County on the Sterling Ranch development. Their work started in 2012 with wastewater planning, which included sewer interceptors and a wastewater treatment plant. In 2014, they were asked to provide civil engineering for the first phase of residential development.

In the summer of 2015, the groundbreaking ceremony for the Sterling Ranch development was held and construction began shortly after. Martin/Martin is one of three engineering firms working on the first phase of the land development.

“We cannot express enough gratitude to the ownership group of Sterling Ranch for allowing us to be involved in such a technologically advanced project,” said John Moore, III, P.E., vice president and director of civil engineering at Martin/Martin. “In many ways this project is on the forefront of how developments should, and will, be designed in the future. “

Additional Martin/Martin projects in Douglas County include: Douglas County Fairgrounds in Castle Rock, Entertainment District in Lone Tree, Meridian Metropolitan District, Plum Creek and Plum Creek South developments, Plum Creek Golf & Country Club, and Stonegate Development, along with several others.

Martin/Martin has been operating worldwide from Colorado since the 1940s and is a nationally ranked engineering firm. Their services are provided to municipalities, public and private redevelopment entities, architects, homebuilders, state and federal agencies, land developers and special districts in Colorado, across the United States and in other countries.

For more information, visit their website at

Children’s Hospital Colorado South Campus Gets Ready to Celebrate 2nd Anniversary

Can you believe it? It has been almost two years now since the Children’s Hospital Colorado (Children’s Colorado) opened its South Campus in Highlands Ranch. In its first year of business alone the South Campus provided more than 41,550 outpatient specialty visits. Clearly there is a need for this type of facility in Douglas County.

The approximately 180,000-square-foot facility, located at the corner of Plaza Drive and Lucent Blvd., opened in December 2013. We recently spoke with the Hospital’s Director of Finance and Business Operations at the South Campus, Seanín Erickson, about the new facility and its impact on our local community. Here’s what she had to say:

Erickson,Seanin (064) 2015
Why did Children’s Colorado decide to open a satellite location in Douglas County?

Erickson: As we continue to explore opportunities to expand in the community, this was an excellent opportunity to bring care closer to the growing population of Highlands Ranch and the southern Denver suburbs.  We listened to our patients and families in these areas and heard that the community wanted treatment options closer to home. Children’s Colorado South Campus, Highlands Ranch is designed and built to enhance our care for kids in this region, which is identified as one of the fastest growing communities in the state.   

What areas do you serve from this facility? 

Erickson: We serve the southern Denver suburbs including, but not limited to, Highlands Ranch, Littleton, Lone Tree, Roxborough Park, Ken Caryl, Sedalia, Castle Rock and the upcoming housing development of Sterling Ranch.   

What kinds of services are provided in the Highlands Ranch location? 

Erickson: Children’s Colorado South Campus offers a wide range of expert pediatric care including Emergency and Urgent Care, Inpatient and Surgery Care, Outpatient Specialties, same day Infusion services, overnight Sleep Studies, along with state-of-the-art imaging services (including MRI, CT, ultrasound and fluoroscopy) and diagnostic services (including ECHO, EKG, EEG, audiology and sleep studies.)

What opportunities are there for community involvement? 

Erickson: The Association of Volunteers assists Children’s Colorado – including South Campus – in its mission by providing volunteers to support patients, families, and staff, and by providing resources through fundraising and advocacy. The South Campus has approximately 80 current volunteers. Additionally there is a Highlands Ranch Chapter that is comprised of members from the Highlands Ranch and Castle Rock areas. The Chapter participates in a multitude of community events throughout the year to benefit Children’s Colorado. 

Are there any upcoming events you would like the community to know about?

Erickson: On Saturday, December 12th the South Campus will be hosting a South Pole holiday event that includes the opportunity for pictures with Santa. This event is open to the pediatric public to enjoy time in a winter wonderland atmosphere. 

What else would you like people to know about Children’s Colorado?

Erickson: Children’s Colorado has defined and delivered pediatric health care excellence for more than 100 years and is a leading pediatric network entirely devoted to the health and well being of children. U.S. News & World Report has acknowledged us as one of the nation’s outstanding pediatric hospitals and we were ranked 5th on its Best Children’s Hospitals 2015-16 Honor Roll. We are known for both our nationally and internationally recognized medical, research, education and advocacy programs, as well as comprehensive everyday care for kids throughout Colorado and surrounding states.

For more information, visit and connect with Children’s Colorado on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.


Seven Stones Chatfield Breaks Ground in Douglas County

Over 100 people attended the official ground breaking ceremony last week for Seven Stones Chatfield. The 35-acre botanical garden cemetery, located at North Rampart Range Road, south of Titan Road, is the first of its kind in Colorado, and is Douglas County’s first new cemetery in more than 100 years.

However, this is not your grandma’s cemetery. While the thought of a cemetery may conjure up images of rows of headstones found in traditional burial grounds, picture instead, beautiful gardens with flowers, trees, winding paths, water features, artistic sculptures, fire pits and outdoor gathering and seating areas.

With this new development, Seven Stones is reinventing the entire experience, offering a fresh approach and a peaceful place for people to honor and memorialize their loved ones and celebrate their lives.

This botanical gardens cemetery will include ground burial and cremation memorials, with many unique options and tributes never before available. Technology will also be included in memorial tributes, so each life story can be remembered and shared. These “memory medallions” will feature a QR code that people can scan with their smart phones to view photos, videos and other tributes to the deceased.

Mausoleums, private family estates, and pet memorials will also be incorporated as part of the garden, designed as a gathering place for people to remember and pay honor to their loved ones.

One of the challenges of traditional cemeteries is the ongoing maintenance costs associated with them and ensuring that they are well maintained long after they have reached capacity. Seven Stones will not be a maintenance-intensive location and the company has set up a perpetual care fund to ensure that the funding will be available to maintain the land for the long term.

Why the name Seven Stones? The number seven holds significance in almost every culture and religion. As the Seven Stones’ team better understood how rooted the number seven is in different cultures, it became clear that it embodies acceptance of all, which is a cornerstone of Seven Stones’ beliefs. In addition, it represents the seven core values of the company – inform, educate, engage, listen, learn, provide and ensure. “Stones” symbolize strength and durability, which fittingly describes the cemetery as a long-term, permanent fixture of the community.

This new development brings another small, locally owned business to northwest Douglas County – an area that is expecting increased growth in the near future.

“We are delighted to welcome Seven Stones Chatfield to northwest Douglas County,” said Amy Sherman, president of the Northwest Douglas County EDC. “As the first botanic gardens cemetery, they will fit perfectly into our Colorado lifestyle and our landscape. We welcome innovative and forward thinking businesses to our region and look forward to having Seven Stones unite with our business community.”

Construction of Seven Stones Chatfield will begin next month. The site will be built in three phases, the first of which is planned to open in the fall of 2015.

For more information visit or call 303-717-7117.