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Pitkin County Press Releases

Posted on: October 12, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Pitkin County Human Services Director Announces Retirement

Oct. 12, 2021

Pitkin County Human Services Director Announces Retirement

Pitkin County, CO - After 30 years of service, Pitkin County Human Services Director, Nan Sundeen is announcing her retirement early next year. Sundeen has been the director of the Pitkin County Human Services department since 1991, coming from Boston where she was a clinical social worker.

Nan has had a lifelong vision of equitable access to care for all and has pursued that vision throughout her career in public service and her time at Pitkin County.  For 30 years, Nan’s “day job” has been director of Pitkin County Human Services. In this position, Nan has been responsible for leading Social Services, Pitkin County Senior Services, administering the Healthy Community Fund, and until 2017, also including Public Health.

Nan has been instrumental in developing and supporting the non-profit network that is in our region today, while at the same time ensuring that our children and families, particularly the underserved, have access to the services and resources they need to be healthy and successful. In addition to leading Pitkin County Human Services, Nan has provided the vision and leadership for numerous regional collaborations that have further contributed to a higher quality of life in the region. In 2002, Nan’s leadership with non-profit partners to secure stable funding led to the successful passage of the Healthy Community Fund which now generates almost $3 million/year to support Roaring Fork Valley health and human service non-profit partners. In 2011, Nan was instrumental in securing the Mountain Family Health Center expansion in Basalt to provide affordable, comprehensive and integrated health care to more than 2,000 low-income patients in Pitkin and Southwestern Eagle Counties. And in 2015, Nan brought together her team, the schools, child and youth serving nonprofits and a local foundation to launch the Aspen Family Resource Center to improve the health outcomes of Aspen’s school-aged children and their families.

“Nan’s leadership and dedication to the families and children in our community have been exemplified by her team’s response to the pandemic. She has a unique gift of bringing together diverse sectors and people and setting aside differences to develop real solutions. Our community is stronger because of Nan’s vision for improving the quality of life for all,” said Kelly McNicholas Kury, Pitkin County Commissioner and Chair.

In 2017, Nan was recognized for her dedication to service to the community with the Public Service Lifetime Achievement Award from the Colorado Association of Nonprofits and in 2018 received the Director of the Year from Colorado Human Services Directors Association and Colorado Counties, Inc.

"Over her many years of public service in Pitkin County, Nan has been a tireless advocate for those most in need,” said Jon Peacock, Pitkin County Manager. “Nan has not hesitated to go beyond the typical scope of a Human Services Director to build community partnerships that ensure a strong social safety net, access to quality healthcare regardless of ability to pay, developing services for the unhoused, and so much more.  Nan's many accomplishments, awards, and enduring partnerships throughout the valley speak volumes about her commitment to public service and the leadership she has provided in Pitkin County, the Roaring Fork Valley,and the State.  Nan will be greatly missed by Pitkin County, she is leaving a very strong department and staff as she moves on to a well earned retirement.  We all wish Nan the best!"

“It has been such a privilege to work with extraordinary staff and non-profit partners to strengthen the social and health programs in the valley. After 30 years I think now is a good time to step aside and make room for a new generation of leaders,” reflected Sundeen. “There is more to do and so many more opportunities heading our way. I won't be very far away and I will be cheering everyone on as they work towards creating more workforce resiliency and a more livable community for everyone."

Pitkin County is now recruiting for Nan’s successor. Interested applicants can learn more at

Contact: Nan Sundeen -


Contact: Kara Silbernagel -


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