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Tom Hale Memorial Scholarship

The Tom Hale Memorial Scholarship is not currently active, however it is an integral part of True North's scholarship history. We will update this page with more information should the scholarship become active.

True North's Tom Hale Memorial Scholarship recognizes Thomas Henry Hale's contributions as a pioneer in Colorado Politics and local government. The scholarship is awarded each year to a graduating Senior in Telluride and/or Norwood who demonstrates a commitment to public service, environmental preservation, and/or historic preservation.

High School seniors in Telluride and Norwood: to apply, please request an application from your guidance counselor, and be sure to complete the essay prompt specific to this scholarship.

Applicants must demonstrate financial need according to their FAFSA application.


Official county proclamation, read at the San Miguel County Commissioners meeting on

Wednesday, April 3rd 2018:

Whereas, Thomas Henry Hale was elected San Miguel County Commissioner in 1976 and served in that role until 1984; 


Whereas, Mr. Hale was a groundbreaking figure in Telluride, helping transition both the municipality and region from its old mining past into the famous ski town, recreational playground, and cultural area that it is today; 


Whereas, Mr. Hale was the first newcomer elected to a leadership role in the San Miguel County government; 


Whereas, Mr. Hale’s shrewdness in procedural matters, and creativity in forging consensus with conservative colleagues, enabled then-held majority views to be represented while also ensuring more liberal issues made it onto the county’s agenda;


Whereas, Mr. Hale is credited with spearheading numerous achievements in Telluride and San Miguel Country, such as 

• the establishment of Telluride’s Historical Commission mandating that all future buildings be in line with the region’s heritage; 

• the passage of laws and regulations that guaranteed low-income housing within town limits; and 

• the creation of the United States’ first and only regional gondola transportation system to connect the town of Telluride with Mountain Village; 


Whereas, Mr. Hale and his business partner, Terry Starr, helped jumpstart Telluride’s now celebrated radio station, KOTO, by giving the station a ten-year lease that cost one dollar a year; 


Whereas, after leaving Telluride, Mr. Hale went on to forge a highly successful career focused on public service and the betterment of his communities and the State of Colorado as a whole, namely Deputy Director at Colorado Counties, Inc., Governmental Liaison at the U.S. Census Bureau, County Administrator for Chaffee County in Salida, Town Manager of Granby, Vice President for Town Relations at Granby Ranch ski area, and finally Town Administrator of Georgetown; 


Whereas, Mr. Hale will be remembered for his approachability, professionalism, ingenuity, integrity, trustworthiness, dry sense of humor, and fondness for vodka martinis; 


Whereas, Mr. Hale, a pioneer in Colorado politics and local government, died on January 23, 2018 in Georgetown, Colorado;  


Now therefore be it resolved that the San Miguel County Board of Commissioners recognizes the profound and lasting contributions of Tom Hale to San Miguel County and the State of Colorado by designating the Tom Hale Memorial Scholarship, to be given each year to a graduating High School Student in San Miguel County who demonstrates a commitment to public service, environmental preservation, and/or historic preservation; and by designating January 23, 2018 to be Tom Hale Day in San Miguel County.

To make a donation to the Tom Hale Scholarship:

make checks payable to True North Youth Program - Tom Hale.

indicate “Tom Hale Scholarship, countywide” in the memo.

Checks can be sent to:

True North Youth Program, P.O. Box 2072, Telluride, Colorado, 81435.

Contact for more information.

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