CU Pioneer Emerita Susan Kirk will be missed

Special to The Colorado Statesman

Leader. Mentor. Public Servant. Philanthropist. Friend. Susan Kirk. This month the City of Denver and the University of Colorado lost one of its great advocates with the passing of Regent Emerita Susan Kirk.

Susan served on the Board of Regents from 1992 to 2004 and she commanded the respect of all who encountered her: from colleagues of both political parties on the board to the faculty, staff, students and alumni of the university who she frequently engaged. Her intelligence, passion and insight earned her the respect of all.

Bob Allen left legacy as liberal lion in Colorado House

The Colorado Statesman

Robert “Bob” Edward Allen was only 26 years old and Chairman of the Young Democrats when he persuaded Denver party leaders to place his name on the Democratic candidate list for election to the Colorado House of Representatives in 1950. It would be the 60s before state legislators ran from individual districts rather than on county slates. Allen would serve for a decade in the House before moving to the Senate, where he served a single term from 1961-65.

Well-liked lobbyist Reinertson passes on

UPDATE: This version of the story corrects an earlier version that incorrectly stated that Sam Mamet was affiliated with Colorado Counties, Inc. Mr. Mamet is the esteemed Executive Director of the Colorado Municipal League. The Colorado Statesman regrets the error and apologizes for the embarrassing mistake.

Regis Groff: A true hero among us

Celebrating the life of an icon in the African American community
The Colorado Statesman

On Friday an overflow crowd filled the AME Shorter church in East Denver for a memorial service in remembrance of Regis F. Groff. For two deeply moving hours the former Senate Democratic Minority Leader was honored for his qualities as leader, pioneer, mentor, teacher, parent and role model. Nearly overlooked were his mischievous temperament, infectious humor and visceral enthusiasm, which he carried into both his political and personal life. Groff was far more than the conscience of the Colorado Senate; he was also a genuinely happy warrior.

Gen. Jim Hall will be remembered as a true hero

On June 1, a very special person passed away by the name of James Carl Hall. Many people, especially those in Arapahoe County and Colorado Republican politics, knew him as General Jim, for he was a Brigadier General (Ret.) in the United States Air Force.

His death earlier this month was not unexpected, but the sad reality of his passing has given way to many beautiful memories by those who came to pay their respects at Our Lady of Loreto Catholic Church in Foxfield on June 6.

Current, former governors celebrate life of Vanderhoof

The Colorado Statesman

Two former governors joined Gov. John Hickenlooper and lawmakers in the House chamber on Monday to celebrate the life of former Gov. John Vanderhoof, a man remembered for being forward thinking and able to work across the aisle to advance the interests of the state.

Vanderhoof died on Sept. 19, 2013. He was 91 years old.

Former Visit Denver President Roger A. Smith dies

Roger A. Smith, age 73, passed away on Nov. 1, 2013 after a 10-year battle with Alzheimer’s. Smith was one of the pivotal players in approving and designing the Colorado Convention Center and served as president of the Denver Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau (now VISIT DENVER) from 1984 to 1993. During his tenure, Smith tripled the Bureau’s budget and increased the staff by nearly 50 percent.

Carolyn Metzler, Republican activist and party volunteer

The Colorado Statesman

Longtime Denver Republican stalwart Carolyn Jean Metzler passed away on July 24 after a long illness. Fortunately, her friends and family got to shower her with love up to the time of her death. And in 2011, the Lincoln Club of Colorado displayed their affection by bestowing on her their lifetime achievement award. Carolyn was honored for her indefatigable efforts, including providing tireless guidance and “moral support” for Denver Republican candidates — “no easy task,” county GOP chair Danny Stroud cracked back then.

J. Ivanhoe “Ivan” Rosenberg, Denver City Councilman, newspaper publisher

The Colorado Statesman

Veteran newspaper publisher and former Denver City Councilman Ivan J. Rosenberg passed away on Aug. 4 after suffering a stroke in Carbondale. His 93 years of life were full, his interests varied, and his death ended a career full of meaningful milestones.

Jerry Kopel, a “legislator’s legislator,” remembered fondly by his colleagues

The Colorado Statesman

Current and former state lawmakers took to the microphone in the House chambers on Wednesday to celebrate the life of the “legislator’s legislator.”

Former Rep. Jerry Kopel, a Democrat from Denver who served a remarkable 22 years in the Legislature, passed away at age 83 on Jan. 21. He was remembered Wednesday for not only his service as a state representative, but also for his service after he retired in 1992, volunteering more than 15 years of legislative insight, including meticulously reading through every word of every bill that made its way through the halls of the Gold Dome.