March 4, 2022

Each year, Denver Business Journal selects outstanding young professionals who are leaders in their field. On March 3rd, Denver Public Schools Foundation’s Vice President of Development and former Interim CEO Sara Hazel was celebrated alongside 39 other individuals who not only excel in their careers but also make a difference in their communities at the Denver Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Awards reception. 

Sara Hazel serves as the Vice President of Development at Denver Public Schools Foundation where she builds relationships and works directly with donors to make a meaningful impact in the lives of DPS students. Sara is a connector, change maker and her actions show she is committed to supporting quality education for all students.

“Sara has gone above and beyond to ensure the DPS Foundation lives by one of its core values of Equity. Upon joining the DPS Foundation, Sara quickly had the opportunity to make a direct impact on our students during COVID-19. The pandemic did not create problems for our students but made many of them more acute. She quickly addressed technology access, and both school and resource supplies. In June of 2021, Sara was asked to step up to the task of serving as the DPS Foundation’s Interim President & CEO while maintaining her key role as our Vice President of Development. As a board member and the current DPS Foundation Board Chair, I have been confident having her at the helm of the organization. Sara is fair, balanced, and knowledgeable and we all trust that she puts Students First and people above all else. She makes a great addition to the 40 Under 40 Award winners! I commend her and know that she is very worthy of this award,” said Jeanne Saunders, Board Chair, DPS Foundation.

Sara came to the DPS Foundation with over fourteen years of nonprofit development and leadership experience. Sara has worked at global, national, and local organizations, including The American Red Cross, The American Cancer Society, and Girls Inc. of Metro Denver. Sara’s leadership has included leading the Colorado Red Cross Century Celebration, celebrating 100 Years of the Red Cross in Colorado, and cofacilitating and planning the first ever national fundraising conference for Girls Inc. In all of her roles, Sara has held management and leadership responsibilities and loves to build and work with exceptional teams. 

Sara’s contributions work to make Denver a better place. Locally, Sara is involved in many organizations including as a volunteer mentor for City Year Denver, as a Commissioner for the Denver Women’s Commission, a member of the Women’s Foundation of Colorado’s Empowerment Council, and is in the Metro Denver Chamber Leadership Foundation Leadership Denver Class of 2020. 


“As a mom of a toddler, time is precious; but also, I want Denver to be a great place for her to grow up and I want to be part of the fabric that makes Denver a great place to be,” Sara shared.