trust & transparency

These are the policies COLab follows to ensure the public has the highest level of trust and transparency in the work we do. 

  • Code of Ethics
  • Donors and Financial Transparency
  • Editorial Independence
  • Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Non-discrimination
  • Conflict of Interest

Code of Ethics

The Colorado News Collaborative journalists adhere to the Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics.

Donors and Financial Transparency

The Colorado News Collaborative is committed to transparency in every aspect of funding our organization. Read our Donors and Financial Transparency policy. 

Editorial Independence

The Colorado News Collaborative subscribes to standards of editorial independence adopted by the Institute for Nonprofit News:

COLab retains full authority over editorial content to protect the best journalistic and business interests of our organization. We maintain a firewall between news coverage decisions and sources of all revenue. Acceptance of financial support does not constitute implied or actual endorsement of donors or their products, services or opinions.

We accept gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals and organizations for the general support of our activities, but our news judgments are made independently and not on the basis of donor support.

COLab may consider donations to support the coverage of particular topics, but our organization maintains editorial control of the coverage. We will cede no right of review or influence of editorial content, nor of unauthorized distribution of editorial content.

COLab will make public all donors who give a total of $5,000 or more per year. We will accept anonymous donations for general support only if it is clear that sufficient safeguards have been put into place that the expenditure of that donation is made independently by our organization and in compliance with INN’s Membership Standards.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion are at the core of what we do at The Colorado News Collaborative. COLab aims to reflect the diversity of the communities it serves in its staff and contributors, its editorial choices and priorities.

Internally, we aim to be a workplace that is welcoming and where all feel included and able to thrive. Externally, we know race and ethnicity, class, generation, gender and geography all affect point of view. Reflecting these differences in our reporting, our training and our innovation efforts leads to better results and a better society. The research is clear: Diverse and inclusive companies make better, bolder decisions, are more likely to innovate and can anticipate shifts in community and consumer needs. These are crucial to COLab’s work.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion are not just buzz words at COLab. They are the way we help ensure “better news for all Coloradans.”


To give equal employment and advancement opportunities to all people, we make employment decisions at the Colorado News Collaborative based on each person’s performance, qualifications and abilities.

The Colorado News Collaborative does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, marital status, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, sex, age, or other status protected by applicable law.

Our Equal Employment Opportunity policy covers all employment practices, including selection and job assignment, compensation, discipline, termination and access to training.

Conflict of Interest

The following Financial Conflict of Interest Policy (“Conflict of Interest Policy”) is an effort (i) to ensure that the deliberations and decisions of the Colorado News Collaborative (“COLab”) are made solely in the interest of promoting the quality of journalism in the state of Colorado, and (ii) to protect the interests of COLab when it considers any transaction, contract, or arrangement that might benefit or be perceived to benefit the private interest of a person affiliated with COLab (each, a “COLab Representative”). As used in this Conflict of Interest Policy, a COLab Representative includes any director, advisory board member, financial advisor, legal counsel or employee.

Duty to COLab

Each COLab Representative owes a duty to COLab to advance COLab’s legitimate interests when the opportunity to do so arises. Each COLab Representative must give undivided allegiance when making decisions affecting the organization. Similarly, COLab Representatives must be faithful to COLab’s nonprofit mission and are not permitted to act in a way that is inconsistent with the central goals of the organization and its nonprofit status.


No COLab Representative shall personally accept gifts or favors that could compromise his or her loyalty to COLab. Any gifts or benefits personally accepted from a party having a material interest in the outcome of COLab or its employees by a COLab Representative individually should be merely incidental to his or her role as a COLab Representative and should not be of substantial value. Any gift with a value of $250 or more, or any gifts with a cumulative value in excess of $250 received by a COLab Representative in any twelve-month period from a single source, shall be considered substantial. Cash payments may not be accepted, and no gifts should be accepted if there are strings attached. For example, no COLab Representative may accept gifts if he or she knows that such gifts are being given to solicit his or her support of or opposition to the outcome or content of any COLab publication.

Conflicts of Interest

The following are examples of conflicts of interest which must be promptly disclosed to the COLab Board of Directors pursuant to Section 4 below by any COLab Representative with knowledge of such conflict of interest:

(a) any real or apparent conflict of interest between a donor or the subject of a COLab publication or report and a COLab Representative;

(b) a COLab Representative’s ownership of an equity interest in a person or entity that is or will be the subject of a COLab publication or report; and

(c) failure to disclose to COLab all relationships between the subject of any COLab publication or report and any COLab Representative or close relatives of the COLab Representative.

Conflict Procedure:

(a) If a COLab Representative or party related to a COLab Representative has an interest in any contract, action or transaction to be entered into with COLab, a conflict of interest or potential conflict of interest exists. Any COLab Representative having knowledge that such a conflict of interest exists or may exist (an “Interested COLab Representative”) will so advise the Board of Directors promptly. An Interested COLab Representative will include in the notice the material facts as to the relationship or interest of the Interested COLab Representative in the entity proposing to enter into a contract, action or transaction with COLab.

(b) Notwithstanding anything herein to the contrary, the Board of Directors may authorize any committee appointed pursuant to the COLab by-laws (a “Committee”) to act in lieu of the Board of Directors in determining whether an action, contract or transaction is fair to COLab as of the time it is authorized or approved by the Committee.

(c) At any time that a conflict of interest or potential conflict of interest is identified, the President of the Board or a Chair of the applicable Committee will ensure that such conflict of interest is placed on the agenda for the next meeting of the Board of Directors or the Committee, as applicable. The notice of such meeting of the Board of Directors or the Committee, as applicable, will include, to the extent available when the notice is sent, a description of the conflict of interest matter to be discussed. By notice before the meeting or at the meeting, the directors on the board or the Committee, as applicable, will be advised that a vote will be taken at the meeting and that, in order to authorize the relevant contract, action or transaction, an affirmative vote of a majority of disinterested directors present at the meeting at which a quorum is present will be required and will be sufficient, even though the disinterested directors constitute less than a quorum of the Board of Directors or the Committee.

(d) Reasonable effort will be made to cause the material facts concerning the relationships between the individuals and COLab which create the conflict to be delivered to and shared with the members of the Board of Directors or the Committee, as applicable, prior to the meeting to enable the directors to arrive at the meeting prepared to discuss the issue. In the event it is not practicable to deliver the information prior to the meeting, it will be delivered to the directors at the meeting, and the directors can act upon the matter with the same authority as if notice had been given prior to the meeting.

(e) The Board of Directors or the Committee, as applicable, will invite all parties to the conflict of interest to attend the meeting, to make presentations and to be prepared to answer questions, if necessary. The Board or Directors or the Committee, as applicable, will also invite outside experts if necessary.

(f) At the meeting, providing a quorum is present, the conflict will be discussed to ensure that the directors present are aware of the issues and the factors involved. The interested directors may be counted for purposes of a quorum, even though they may not take part in any vote on the issues.

(g) The Board of Directors or the Committee, as applicable, must decide, in good faith, reasonably justified by the material facts, whether the action, contract or transaction would be in the best interest of COLab and fair to COLab as of the time it is authorized or approved.

(h) All interested directors must abstain from voting and, if necessary, leave the room when the vote is taken.

(i) The Board of Directors or the Committee, as applicable, will maintain a written account of all that transpires at the meeting and incorporate such account into the minutes of the meeting and disseminate it to the full Board of Directors. Such minutes will be presented for approval at the next meeting of the Board of Directors and maintained in the corporate record book.

(j) To the extent that the conflict of interest is continuing and the contract, action or transaction goes beyond one (1) year, the foregoing notice and discussion and vote will be repeated on an annual basis.

Personal Loans

COLab may not loan to, or guarantee the personal obligations of, any COLab Representative.