Family Tree; Helping Denver Communities this Holiday

Meet the Director of Donor Operations | Robert Ham

Hi Robert!  Can you introduce yourself to our readers? How did you become the Director of Donor Relations with Family Tree?

I’m Robert Ham and I’m the Director of Donor Relations for Family Tree. I’ve been in the nonprofit world of Denver for 17 years, raising money for some outstanding organizations including Mile High United Way, Colorado Youth for a Change, Urban Peak, Colorado Thought Leaders Forum and now Family Tree. I started my career in Denver in the advertising agency world doing business development for Karsh/Hagan and helping run a boutique agency called Extra Strength. I had a nonprofit client and once I began working on their brand – I knew I wanted to do more. I wasn’t equipped to do direct service, like so many of my amazing colleagues who work with people every day to help them move forward, but I knew I could ask the community for money and support.

I feel honored to be able to “help the people who help the people.” I had known of Family Tree through homelessness and human services partnerships and knew they were a highly-respected, well-run organization making incredible impact in the Denver metro area. I was running my own small ad agency during the pandemic when Katherine Lawson, the Chief Development Officer, asked if I was interested in heading their individual and corporate donor efforts. I’m very grateful that happened! I did take a year away recently to work with Colorado Thought Leaders Forum, and am pleased to be back doing the work I love – alongside Katherine and our new CEO Dontae Latson – for an organization and mission that means so much to me.

What is Family Tree’s Mission?  How long has Family Tree been around?

The mission of Family Tree is to partner with all people to prevent and overcome the interconnected issues of child abuse, domestic violence and homelessness and promote safety, stability and healing across generations. Family Tree was established in 1976 and has been a vital part of the community for 47 years. Family Tree serves the seven-county Denver metro area and runs 10 different comprehensive programs for Child & Youth Services, Domestic Violence Services and Housing & Family Stabilization. Last year Family Tree served 4,715 people with direct services and provided help to 17,748 people through our Domestic Violence and Homeless Helplines. 

Family Tree is that kind and trusted friend, who’s always there no matter what, to help when you need it most with whatever you need the most. Family Tree is very comprehensive and provides a lot of services for great impact.

Can you tell us the importance of why folks should donate to Family Tree, and how they can? 

Supporting Family Tree means investing in a vital organization making great impact in the community. Financial donations allow the Family Tree provider experts to steward dollars where they are needed most and continue to grow the organization. Engagement with Family Tree goes beyond monetary donations, too.

Family Tree has many volunteer opportunities all year round, including group/company impact projects, cooking a meal at a residential facility, individual and skills-based, and intern opportunities for young people looking to be involved in a great nonprofit. We also accept new in-kind items ranging from basic needs like non-perishable food and hygiene products, to outwear and linens, to seasonal items like school supplies and presents for our Holiday Shop this season and beyond. (Note we do not accept used items.) The holiday is upon us as we speak, and we could still use items in our Holiday Shop. Folks can visit and find out how to get involved.

We are so very grateful to Nicole and the Mile Hi Modern team for their support of Family Tree this Holiday. I’m really looking forward to coming to the OH WHAT FUN! Party and excited to see all the people and the generosity of the Mile Hi Modern community.  When folks show this type of kindness for those who need it most, including teens who sometimes get lost in the shuffle of toys at the holidays, the impact it has goes way beyond the season –  THANK YOU!!

What challenges have you experienced on your journey with Family Tree? 

I’ve been answering this question a lot these days, especially as the issue of homelessness is forefront in our community. You don’t have to look very far to see that so many people are facing challenges in our city. Yet the perception is often that this is someone else’s problem to work on, when the truth is it takes all of us – working to make a difference, supporting impactful organizations, and helping one another however we can.

There is also a perception of people experiencing homelessness that is only a portion of the people who are unhoused. Many people are employed, they are just underemployed to afford housing. And there are thousands of women, children and families who are on the streets because of traumatic situations including domestic violence. Fortunately, Family Tree is available to serve its mission and to work collaboratively with others to walk alongside families and individuals toward stability, safety and healing.

The organization is also fully engaged in affordable housing and supportive of companies and organization working in this area. Again, it takes all of us – individuals, businesses, nonprofits, groups – to make a difference.

Where is Family Tree Located? Why this Neighborhood?

Family Tree has its roots in Jefferson County and now serves the entire seven-county Denver metro area because as the city grows – and we continue to come together and refine how we provide services – the need and the ability to address that need grows. Family Tree operates several facilities in the metro area. The offices in Wheat Ridge house the housing and family stabilization services, along with administrative and gift and community services.

The Family Tree House of Hope in Englewood is a transitional living facility for women with children experiencing homelessness. GOALS (Generational Opportunities Achieving Lifelong Success) in Aurora is a longer-term transitional living facility for families experiencing homelessness. Roots of Courage is a domestic violence transitional living facility (location undisclosed). Family Tree Karlis Center in Lakewood is dedicated to supervised visitations for parents and children. And the Family Tree Domestic Violence Outreach and Legal Advocacy programs are run out of Porchlight Family Justice Center in Lakewood. 

What is the Website to follow for “Family Tree” ?

Visit for more information on how to get involved and support Family Tree!

 Instagram – @thefamilytreeinc

Facebook @familytreeinc,

LinkedIn – @family-tree_3

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