Steamboat Conversations - Virtual Town Halls

Steamboat Conversations LogoInformation is moving quickly and changing even faster around as communities deal with COVID-19 and other issues that span economic, cultural, recreational and social matters.

The city and county, in conjunction with the Steamboat Pilot & Today, are hosting a series of virtual town halls to share information on a variety of topics.

Steamboat Conversations Town Hall topics will touch upon business, mental health, local government, education, health and more. 

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Steamboat Pilot-Today


Town Hall #36 - Workers Rights
Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Local and state experts answer questions surrounding the rights of employees as it relates to COVID-19.

  •  Bevin Luna, industrial hygienist with the OSHA Consultation program;
  • Roberta Smith, director of Routt County Public Health;
  • Jessica Valand, regional director for workforce development with the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment;
  • Christina Oxley, regional business services coordinator with the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.


37 Works Rights

Town Hall #36 - Unemployment & Human Services
Wednesday, February 24, 2021 - Postponed

36 Unemployment-Human Services

Town Hall #35 - Vaccines
Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Routt County’s roll out of the vaccine and how the process is going.

  • Dr. Brian Harrington, Routt County Medical Officer;
  • Roberta Smith, Routt County Public Health Director;
  • Soniya Fidler, President of UCHealth Yampa Valley Medical Center

Town Hall #34 - Winter Carnival 2021
Wednesday, January 27, 2021

The 108-year-old Winter Carnival will see changes due to COVID-19 restrictions and the effort to ensure athletes, spectators, and community members all stay safe and follow guidelines this winter. This year, the carnival will continue with outdoor activities for the youth of our community and some traditional experiences around town, but all spectator events will be limited.

  • Cedar Beauregard, longtime local
  • Shane Yeager, a horseman who has pulled many young skiers;
  • Anne Degroff, a longtime local whose kids were in the SSWSC;
  • Tom Whiddon, Winter Carnival announcer for Opening Ceremonies and Street Events for years;
  • Blair Seymour, SSWSCs development program director and cycling program director.

Steamboat Conversations - Three-Part Series

  • Friday, December 4, 2020 - COVID-19 Vaccines: Made, Tested & Approved
  • Friday, December 11, 2020 - First Vaccines: Efficacy & Safety
  • Friday, December 18, 2020 - Routt County Immunization Plan

As part of the Steamboat Conversations and in collaboration with the City of Steamboat Springs, Steamboat Pilot, Routt County, and UCHealth Yampa Valley Medical Center, local public health and medical experts will discuss the progress of the COVID-19 vaccines and the vaccines’ distribution to the public in Routt County during a three-part series.

  • Dr. Thomas Campbell, virologist and infectious disease specialist, UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital. Dr. Campbell is leading UCHealth’s clinical trial of the moderna coronavirus vaccine. (12/11)
  • Dr. Brian Harrington, County Medical Officer
  • Dr. Laura Sehnert, Chief Medical Officer, UCHealth Yampa Valley Medical Center (12/4 and 12/18)
  • Ronald Krall, MD, former Chief Medical Officer, GlaxoSmithKline.
  • Roberta Smith, Director, Routt County Public Health
  • Lisa Schlichtman, Editor, Steamboat Pilot & Today Moderator

Watch the session on YouTube

Town Hall #30 - Winter Wave
Wednesday, November 11, 2020

As the community welcomes winter, a surge in the number of local COVID-19 cases, along with moving backward on the state’s Safer at Home plan, is being experienced. The panel will discuss this as well as where we go from here with the holidays on the horizon.  

  • Roberta Smith, Routt County Public Health Director
  • Scott Cowman, Routt County Environmental Health Director
  • Dr. Brian Harrington, Routt County Chief Medical Officer
  • Tim Corrigan, Routt County Commissioner

Town Hall #29 - Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Wednesday, October 28, 2020

A number of local governments, schools and nonprofit organizations are implementing efforts to improve diversity, equity and inclusivity in their workplaces.  

  • Gary Suiter, City Manager, City of Steamboat Springs
  • Renzo Walton, Immigration Specialist, Integrated Community
  • Jay Hamric, Director of Learning, Steamboat Springs School District
  • Anne-Marie Williams, Title IV Coordinator, Steamboat Springs School District
  • Kate Nowak, Executive Director, Routt County United Way

Town Hall #28 - Bilingual & Newcomer Programs 
Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Over the past few years, the Steamboat Springs School District has seen an increase in students enrolling who are both new to the country and new to English. The program allows students to build a foundation in English while learning the same content as their peers. The goal is to get students to fluency, after which they are provided continued monitoring and support.

  • Ann Coon, EL Specialist
  • B Torres, District Translator
  • Kelly Adamich-Gasau, ELL Teacher
  • Dani Booth, EL Specialist
  • Jay Hamric, Director of Teaching & Learning

Town Hall #27 - Diversity, Equity & Inclusivity Toolkit 
Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Leadership Steamboat class created the DEI toolkit as part of its 2020 program. The class studied issues of diversity, inclusivity and equity in Routt County through group interviews, a review of local demographics and research about how communities are addressing these issues. Then, the group created a resource that offers relatively simple strategies individuals, businesses, governmental entities and nonprofits can pursue to be more aware of and actively work toward a more diverse, equitable and inclusive community.

  • Norma Ruth Ryan
  • Sylvie Piquet
  • Kirk Aigner
  • Kristen Orr

Town Hall #26 - Community Policing 
Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Law Enforcement Agencies, their officers and their actions have been under the microscope for decades, but never more so after several recent national incidents. Learn from the Steamboat Springs Police Chief and Routt County Sherriff what their departments are doing, how they are working with the community and what their vision is for the future, while also understanding the valuable oversight role City Council and County Commissioners provide.

  • Cory Christensen, Steamboat Springs Police Chief
  • Garrett Wiggins, Routt County Sheriff
  • Beth Melton, Routt County Commissioner
  • Lisel Petis, Steamboat Springs City Councilor

Town Hall #25 - Steamboat Schools 
Thursday, August 6, 2020

Much has been up in the air due to the changing conditions around COVID-19. Find out what the Steamboat Springs School District is considering as the start of the academic season approaches. 

  • Jay Hamric - Teaching & Training Director
  • Kalie McHaffie - SPE Teacher
  • Heidi Champion - SSMS Principal
  • Dr. Brad Meeks - SSSD Superintendent
  • Kelly Latterman - SSSD School Board Chair
  • Dr. Brian Harrington - Routt County Public Health

Town Hall #24 - Public Health 
Wednesday, July 29, 2020

The COVID landscape continues to change and during this session, we'll hear an update from the healthcare professionals from Routt County working to keep our community safe and open as the community looks at Colorado's next phase - Protect Our Neighbor. 

  • Brian Harrington, Routt County Chief Medical Officer
  • Robin Schepper, Routt County Public Information Officer
  • Tim Corrigan, Chair, Routt County Board of Public Health
  • Roberta Smith, Routt County Interim Public Health Director

Town Hall #23 - Childcare
Wednesday, July 22, 2020

There are lots of happy campers among the childcare providers as programs have returned in various forms. Hear from these professionals on a variety of topics surrounding the young at heart. 

  • Alexis Wolf, Parks & Recreation Recreation Programs
  • Tracy DeliQuadri, Little Bear Childcare 
  • Kim Martin, Young Tracks
  • Dana Duran, Boys & Girls Club of Northwest Colorado
  • Sharon Butler, Family Development Center’s Child Care Network

Town Hall #22 - Recreation & Activities
Thursday, June 18, 2020

With Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors recently signed by Governor Polis, what does that mean for outdoor recreation and specifically for activity companies across the Yampa Valley? This panel looks at the topic from a variety of  angles and shares their insights as the prime summer outdoor period approaches. 

  • Angela Cosby, Parks & Recreation
  • Dave Hunter, Steamboat Ski Resort
  • Doug Monger, County Commissioner
  • Stephanie Orozco, Old Town Hot Springs

Town Hall #21 - Reopening The Community
Wednesday, June 3, 2020 

With Routt County’s variance for restaurants approved by the state, short-term lodging set to start again June 1 and anticipated updates from the Governor Polis coming early in June, the community is beginning the road to recovery. The panel helps everyone understand the changes and what to expect as we move forward in welcoming back part-time residents, visitors and events like the farmers market.   

  • Beth Melton, Routt County Commissioner
  • Jason Lacy, City Council President
  • Heather Savalox, Routt County Environmental Health
  • Rebecca Bessey, Steamboat Springs Planning & Community Development Director

Town Hall #20 - Changing City Services
Thursday, May 21, 2020

With calculations showing the city’s general fund will be impacted by COVID-19 to the tune of $3.5 to $4.5 million, city services and staffing are experiencing changes to accommodated the shortfall. Operating and service cuts, along with payroll reductions, are narrowing the gap. This panel will discuss what will be different, the programs and services that will see modifications or elimination and how each department across the city is adapting.  

  • Gary Suiter, City Manager
  • Kim Weber, Finance Director
  • Angela Cosby, Parks & Recreation Director
  • Jon Snyder, Public Works Director

Town Hall #19 - Students, Curriculum & COVID
Friday, May 15, 2020

Students are getting a required course added to their core curriculum - Coronavirus 101.  From remote learning to canceled sport seasons and graduation under new circumstances, Steamboat Springs’ students are adapting to life with COVID. Our panel lets us in on course changes, social interactions, frustrations and accomplishments. As the school year comes to an end for all, and especially our seniors who have reached a scholastic milestone, find out how they are dealing with this challenging academic time. 

  • Maddie Craigen, 12th
  • Axel Rios, 12th
  • Levi Twitchell, 12th
  • Liam Catterson, 10th
  • Darby Martinez, 10th
  • Cole Campbell, 8th

Town Hall #18 - Casey’s Pond
Tuesday, May 12, 2020

COVID-19 has entered our lives, but none so much as seen by the impact for Casey’s Pond, the senior living community. Understand what the residents, their families and the staff have worked through as they battle the virus through aggressive testing, facility restrictions and strict healthcare protocol. Learn how they are getting through this as well as how they have come together despite losing several of their family to this disease.

  • Brad Boatright, Executive Director, Casey’s Pond
  • Kari Ladrow, Routt County Director of Public Health
  • Sarah Floyd, Casey’s Pond resident family
  • Dr. Brian Harrington, Routt County Medical Officer

Town Hall #17 - Ranching: Land, Livestock & Life
Friday, May 8, 2020

The next town hall gets the inside scoop from our ranching community on how the coronavirus has impacted them. We’ve seen how hard it is to get items for the household, but what about when your homestead is several hundred acres? What about crops and livestock care and getting them to market? This panel of long-time ranchers shares their stories and how they are adapting to the new COVID-19 season.

  • Michele Meyer, Community Ag Alliance
  • Todd Hagenbuch, Routt County Extension
  • Justin Warren, Rancher & Superior Livestock Auctions
  • Patrick Stanko, Rancher
  • Mark Berkley, Rancher

Town Hall #16 - Road to Recovery
Tuesday, May 5, 2020

What does the road to recovery look like?  Is it a single-lane, two-lane or multi-lane road that allows our community to start transitioning to the new normal? Many members of organizations across Routt County have been meeting to shape what that road looks like and will share  available programs, resources and how the monies can add up for our community.  

  • Jason Lacy, City Council President
  • Kari Ladrow, Routt County Public Health
  • John Bristol, Steamboat Springs Economic Development
  • Kara Stoller, Steamboat Springs Chamber
  • Lisa Popovich, Main Street Steamboat Springs

Town Hall #15 - Back to Business
Friday, May 1, 2020

As companies continue to modify how business is conducted, are gradually reopening to the public or dealing to extended closures during the coronavirus, local professionals share resources available from a variety of state and federal programs as well as what’s on the horizon for local businesses.  

  • Randy Rudasics, Yampa Valley Entrepreneurship Center
  • Lisa Popovich, Main Street Steamboat Springs
  • John Bristol, Steamboat Springs Economic Development
  • Kara Stoller, Steamboat Springs Chamber

Town Hall #14 - Safer at Home
Tuesday, April 28, 2020

As the community transitions to the new Safer at Home order by Governor Polis and starts to gradually open up businesses, questions are sure to abound about what this means here. As we’ve heard, many people have questions and we hope to shred some light on many of those and how we move to the next phase.

  • Beth Melton, County Commissioner
  • Tim Corrigan, County Commissioner
  • Doug Monger, County Commissioner
  • Jason Lacy, City Council President

Town Hall #13 - Faith, Strength, Understanding
Friday, April 24, 2020 @ 10:30am

When facing challenging times and uncertain circumstances, people’s spiritual faith can often be tested or lead to questions as one wrestles with the situation. How do you stay strong, remain courageous, and continue to give of ourselves to others? Several leaders across Steamboat Springs’ faith community offer up words of wisdom, strength and understanding as our community finds its way through this pandemic. 

  • Joella West, President, Har Mishpacha
  • Father Ernest, Holy Name Catholic Church
  • Tim Selby, Steamboat United Methodist Church
  • Troy Lewis, Steamboat Christian Center

Town Hall #12 - Taking Care of You
Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Taking care of yourself is important especially during a time of crisis. Learn ways to cope, schedule and take control on some of the things we might think are not in our control.  We’ve all been at home for over a month now, but some folks have spent considerable lengths of time in isolation and small quarters. Learn how to deal with isolation, keep a positive mental health, set parameters, make time for exercise, the importance of connections and how to take care of you!  

  • Steve Swanson, NASA Astronaut & Boise State University 
  • Kristin Race, Mindful Life Today
  • Rebecca Williams, Mountain Fit
  • Dr. Phaedra Fegley, Minds in Motion

Town Hall #11 - Remote Learning
Friday, April 17, 2020

The Steamboat Springs School District shares insights on learning and what a remote learning environment is like these days and how to get the most of out the online curriculum. 

  • Bard Meeks, Superintendent, SSSD
  • Heidi Hamric: 4th grade SPE teacher
  • Julie Warnke: SSMS Spanish
  • Jessica Reagon: SSMS special education
  • Shelby DeWolfe: SCE counselor
  • Jay Hamric: Director of Teaching & Learning

Town Hall #10 - Public Health Order 2020-03
Thursday, April 16, 2020

A special Town Hall has been scheduled for Thursday, April 16, to look more in-depth at the most recent Routt County Public Health Order 2020-03, that requires mitigation plans for all businesses.

The session, moderated by Editor Lisa Schlichtman, will take place virtually Thursday morning and will cover the order, its intent and what is required by businesses and citizens.

  • Routt County Commissioner Tim Corrigan
  • Routt County Medical Officer Dr. Brian Harrington
  • Steamboat Springs City Council President Jason Lacy
  • Steamboat Springs Police Chief Cory Christensen.

Town Hall #9 - Kids Activities
Tuesday, April 14, 2020

We all have to get creative in more ways than one when thinking of how to develop activities that kids can do electronically or remotely. Hear from several organizations as they share tips for staying active, creative and keeping your mental side sharp.

  • Sarah Kostin, Bud Werner Memorial Library
  • Celina Taylor, Steamboat Arts Academy
  • Sylvie Piquet, Steamboat Creates
  • Alexis Wolf, Steamboat Springs Parks & Recreation

Town Hall #8 - Healthcare Preparedness
Friday, April 10, 2020

The community is planning for what it hopes will not materialize, a surge in patients, and interfacing with various agencies and organizations in preparing for this. How are we planning for a surge of patients not only at the hospital but within the community? It takes a a partnership across the county in activating plans to this scale. Find out what healthcare professionals are considering for something like this.

  • Soniya Fidler – UCHealth/Yampa Valley Medical Center
  • Dr. Jesse Sandhu – Steamboat Emergency Center
  • Chuck Cerasoli – Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue & Surge Task Force
  • Dr. Jennifer Kempers – Yampa Valley Medical Associates & Chair of the Medicine/Critical Care Committee @ YVMC

Town Hall #7 - Non-Profits, Part II
Tuesday, April 7, 2020 

The virtual discussion starts at 10:30 a.m. and features professionals from the community. The list of panelists is anticipated to include:

  • Stephanie Einfeld, Northwest Colorado Health
  • Nelly Navarro, Integrated Community
  • Mindy Marriott, Reaching Everyone Preventing Suicide (REPS)
  • Lisel Petis, Advocates of Routt County

Town Hall #6 - Non-Profits, Part I
Friday, April 3, 2020

The virtual discussion starts at 10:30 a.m. and features non-profit professionals from the community. The list of panelists is anticipated to include:

  • Sue Fegelein - Lift Up
  • Jason Peasley - Yampa Valley Housing Authority
  • Kate Nowak - Routt County United Way
  • Stephanie Monahan - The Health Partnership

Town Hall #5 - Finances
Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Financial professionals will participate in a panel discussion to address financial questions that may have arisen from the COVID-19 outbreak.

The virtual discussion starts at 10:30 a.m. and features professionals from the community. The list of panelists includes:

  • PJ Wharton - Yampa Valley Bank
  • Steve Zarlengo - Edward Jones
  • Jim Nowak - Western Slope Accounting Group.

Town Hall #4 - Testing & Orders
Friday, March 27, 2020

City of Steamboat Springs and Routt County officials will participate in a panel discussion to address questions about COVID-19 testing efforts and the statewide stay-at-home order

The virtual discussion starts at 10:30 a.m. and features professionals from the community. The list of panelists includes Routt County Commissioner Beth Melton, Steamboat Springs City Council President Jason Lacy and Routt County Public Health Officer Dr. Brian Harrington. Steamboat Pilot & Today Editor Lisa Schlichtman will moderate the panel discussion.

Town Hall #3 - Stay At Home
Wednesday, March 25, 2020

We’ve been hearing a lot about Stay at Home orders from many states across the county as well as from several local communities in Colorado. This panel will look at the new Public Health orders, and the intent of the orders. Tentatively scheduled to join moderator Lisa Schlichtman, editor with the Steamboat Pilot & Today, will be: 

  • Jason Lacy – Steamboat Springs City Council
  • Beth Melton - Routt County Commissioner
  • Cory Christensen - Steamboat Springs Police Dept.

Town Hall #2 - Employment
March 23, 2020

A panel of business experts will discuss issues and share information around the virus. Expected to join moderator Lisa Schlichtman, editor with the Steamboat Pilot & Today, will be: 

  • Kara Stoller – Steamboat Springs Chamber
  • Jessica Voland – Colorado Workforce Center
  • Whitney Bakarich – Mind Springs Services
  • Jennifer Dorr – Routt County Social Services

Town Hall #1 - The Virus
March 20, 2020

During the first virtual Town Hall a panel of health experts discussed issues and shared information around the virus. Joining moderator Lisa Schlichtman, editor with the Steamboat Pilot & Today, was:

  • Dr. Laura Sehnert , chief medical officer and emergency medicine physician at UCHealth Yampa Valley Medical Center
  • Dr. Brian Harrington, Routt County Public Health Medical Director
  • Chuck Cerasoli, Interim Steamboat Springs Fire Chief 
  •  Kari Ladrow, Routt County Public Health Director