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 Keller Williams Performance Realty 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 and Duane founded the Small Town Project with a passion for nurturing the community.

Elaine along with her husband, Duane, and children live on South 11th Street in Rocky Ford.

Elaine Gurule
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Board President

Abby Vantine

Board Director

Abby is a Rocky Ford resident and a local business owner. She owns and operates Juniper Hair Company in Manzanola. She is passionate about developing small businesses and revitalizing our beautiful Main Street.  

Abby lives with her husband and daughter on Willow Street in Rocky Ford.

Abby Vantine
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Board Director

Adrienne Encinias

Board Director

Adrienne is a 2002 Rocky Ford High School graduate 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.

Adrienne Encinias
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Board Director

Soraya Shiranlou
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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

Executive Director

Duane is the founding Executive Director for the Small Town Project. Duane is a 2004 Rocky Ford HighSchool graduate who obtained his Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems at the Metropolitan State University of Denver. During his early career, he worked at iLendingDIRECT leading the forward progress in technology and managing the IT infrastructure of a national finance 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 board of directors for Southeast Health Group and the Advisory Council for Otero Junior College

Duane along with his wife, Elaine, and children live on South 11th Street in Rocky Ford.

Duane Gurule
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Executive Director

© 2019-2020 by The Small Town Project

501(c)(3) Nonprofit

Designed by Dynamic Solutions of Colorado

Non-Discrimination Policy

​​Call us:

719.316.2198

​Find us: 

208 N Main Street

Rocky Ford, CO 81067

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#84-2245807