Who We Are

Elaine Gurule

Board President

Elaine is the founding Board President of the Small Town Project, where she oversees our mission of improving the quality of life in her small town of Rocky Ford, Colorado. She is a local Realtor® with Hancock Group Real Estate and has a first-hand view of how big of an impact distressed properties have on home values. Elaine's commitment to improving the lives of residents in the Rocky Ford community developed from a background in early childhood education where her passion for seeing young children learn and flourish now finds purpose in seeing her community revived and flourishing. Seeing a great need in our community for a group of small giants to give the town the care and attention it deserves, Elaine co-founded the Small Town Project with a passion for nurturing the community.

Elaine along with her husband, Duane, and children live on Washington Avenue in Rocky Ford.

E_edited.jpg
Elaine Gurule
  • Email Elaine

Board President

Adrienne Encinias

Board Director

Adrienne is a 2002 Rocky Ford High School graduate, healthcare worker, and committed community member. She has been involved in numerous school and community groups and is passionate about promoting programs for our youth and at-risk populations. 

Adrienne lives with her husband and children on South 2nd Street in Rocky Ford.

IMG_20210409_135224_edited.jpg
Adrienne Encinias
  • Email Adrienne

Board Director

Nevaeh Chavez

Youth Board Director

Nevaeh is a Rocky Ford High School Student (Class of 2022) and our very first Youth Board Member. Her biggest strength is her enthusiasm, and she is passionate about lifting up the people around her. Her understanding of the importance of community involvement comes from her family and grandma, and she is committed to doing her part in leading positive improvements in the community that will make it a better place for kids, teenagers, and families.

Nevaeh lives with her family in Rocky Ford.

Nevaeh_edited.jpg
Nevaeh Chavez
  • Email Nevaeh

Youth Board Director

SorayaHeadshot_edited_edited.jpg
Soraya Shiranlou
  • Email Soraya

Board Director

Soraya Shiranlou

Board Director

Soraya is a 2006 Rocky Ford High School graduate with a Master's of Business Administration degree from the Colorado State University-Pueblo. She is also the founder of a well-known digital marketing company, Modern Media Marketing

Soraya lives with her fiance, Sam, and two dogs on Spruce Street in Rocky Ford.

Duane Gurule

Director

Duane is a 2004 Rocky Ford High School graduate and formerly incarcerated person who obtained his Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems at the Metropolitan State University of Denver. During his early career, he worked on the forward progress in technology and managing the IT infrastructure of a national fin-tech company. Duane is also the Southeast Colorado Community Organizer for The Colorado Trust and focuses on promoting health equity in our region. He and his family moved from Littleton, Colorado back to the Rocky Ford area in 2018 and he fell back in love with all of the unique qualities that make his small town so wonderful. A strong community advocate, he also serves on the Rocky Ford City Council, the board of directors for Southeast Health Group, and the Advisory Council for Otero College

Duane along with his wife, Elaine, and children live on Washington Avenue in Rocky Ford.

LLI_Cohort10Gurule_Duane_CHM6710_edited.jpg
Duane Gurule
  • Email Duane

Executive Director