Dawn Thilmany

Dawn Thilmany headshot

Role: Professor of Agriculture and Resource Economics and Co-Director of the Regional Economic Development Institute, CSU Fort Collins

How are you connected to Spur?

I see a number of eventual connections between Spur and programs I work with at CSU:

  • Given my former leadership with the Food Systems team and goal to bridge their work with the Regional Economic Development Institute, I can envision offering a variety of farm and food business development programs and projects out of Spur, including in partnership with the Institute for Entrepreneurship.
  • Spearheading some Regional Economic Development Institute programs with Economic Development partners (Downtown Colorado, EDCC, Colorado Food System Advisory Council) out of Spur.
  • If the new Food Innovation Center hire agrees, I am interested in building out a consumer (and public attitude) panel from the Food Innovation Center that could be used for research projects and industry panels.

When did you get involved with Spur and why is it important to you?

I have been only lightly involved in framing “what could be” in the early phases, and hope to “plug in” as programs form, but I do not have a formal affiliation with Spur at this point.

What outcomes have you seen or do you expect from work at Spur?

Another door to access CSU talent and programs for the Denver and statewide community, as well as a catalyst for public-facing initiatives that add visibility to the great work already being done at CSU.



Associate Attorney, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority

Ms. Becker has dedicated her career to the Navajo Nation and its natural resources.  She is currently serving as an Associate Attorney for the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority.  Prior to this position, she had the honor of serving as the Director of the Navajo Nation Division of Natural Resources from May 2013 to January 2019, as an appointee of President Begaye and Vice-President Nez, after serving eleven (11) years as an attorney for the Navajo Nation focusing on water rights and natural resources issues.  Continuing her deep interest and passion for water, she serves on the Leadership Team for the Water and Tribes Initiative in the Colorado River Basin, as a Commissioner on the New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission, as an appointee of Governor Lujan Grisham, and on the Navajo Nation Water Rights Commission, as an appointee of Speaker Damon.  Ms. Becker is equally passionate about supporting artists and serves as a Trustee for the Institute of American Indian Arts and Culture (IAIA), as an appointee of President Obama.  Ms. Becker is a member of the Nation and lives on the Navajo Nation in Fort Defiance with her husband and two school age children.

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