2018 40 Under 40 Winners

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Ashley Blubaugh

University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
Aurora, CO

Why is a 40 under 40 winner

  1. She is a member of the steering committee and chair of recruitment and selection for the University of Denver’s Institute for Leaders in Development, a professional development program for Colorado’s emerging fundraising leaders.
  2. While at the Denver Rescue Mission, she helped transition the team to a major gifts model.
  3. During Ashley’s time at Spectrum Health, she was an integral part of the successful $100 million capital campaign to build the new Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, including crafting the case for support and naming opportunities for the entire campaign.
  4. She manages major giving pertaining to the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus’ efforts around mental and behavioral health – particularly, the Marcus Institute for Brain Health and the National Mental Health Innovation Center. 

Q & A

  1. How did you get into health care philanthropy?

    I began as the front desk secretary of a hospital foundation with no idea of what would come next.  Within a few months of starting the position, a co-worker (who became my mentor), took me under his wing to teach me fundraising.  This mentor coached me on the intricacies of the field and I soon fell in love with the work and how rewarding it can be. Little did I know, this shy and anxious young woman would make health care philanthropy her career!    

  2. Why did you choose to make health care philanthropy your career?

    I chose to focus on health care philanthropy because I love seeing the direct impact that philanthropy can have on a patient’s physical and mental wellness.  Additionally, there are countless clinicians, researchers and educators inspiring me daily as they make miraculous health care leaps a reality. 

  3. What has been the #1 factor in your career success so far?

    Relationships.  Co-creating visionary gifts with my benefactors has been the key to my success.  Philanthropy is not presenting a menu of options to a donor.  I love being able to build trust with my donors where they allow me to walk beside them and inspire them to make lasting philanthropic gifts to change health care.   

  4. What is your greatest passion and why?

    Personally, my greatest passion are my three children.  They challenge me to be better each day.  Showing them that they can, and should, find a career that is not only fulfilling, but one that they can’t wait to wake up and go to every day, is something I’m extremely adamant about. 

  5. What are your future aspirations?
  6. I don’t have a title or position I’m chasing in the development world.  My aspirations are to help philanthropists see that they hold the key to ensuring that society views mental health as important as physical health.  I hope to not only reduce the stigma around mental wellness, but raise crucial dollars to be proactive in this space rather than reactive.  There is not a one size fits all approach to mental wellness, but philanthropy can move the needle to ensure care is available when needed.

Ashley Blubaugh

Fun Fact:

I love national parks and want to visit all of them. I was engaged in Yellowstone and married in Rocky Mountain National Park!