Alumnus gives back through Arc

Dean Boosalis (BSBA ’68) says he was shocked to receive a lifetime achievement award from the Arc Thrift Stores of Colorado — especially because the award has only been given one other time in the last 40 years.

“I am graciously blown away with it,” he says.

Boosalis, who works full time as a certified public accountant and partner at BKD LLP, began volunteering for Arc 15 years ago.

“Not-for-profits are always in need of accountants, and I really enjoyed the thought of giving back to my community,” he says, noting that his firm allows and encourages him to co-mingle his volunteer and work hours.

Although most recognize Arc as a chain of thrift stores, the 18 Front Range retail locations that Boosalis helps oversee are the funding sources for a much larger mission. Arc is one of the nation’s largest grassroots organizations dedicated to providing services and advocacy to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

During the 300–400 hours per year that he dedicates to Arc, Boosalis has served on the board of directors and the finance, governance and audit committees. He has been instrumental in improving governance and leadership, improving cash flow from retail stores and increasing the stores’ number of disabled employees.

But perhaps the most notable achievement is that his business and accounting background allowed him to help secure Arc’s future in Colorado.

Like most nonprofits, Boosalis says, Arc was in need of more business-minded individuals within its leadership to make decisions and manage resources so the organization would thrive for years to come.

“With more than 20,000 people with physical or mental disabilities in Colorado,” Boosalis says, “the need for services does and always will surpass the source of funds. But now, the Arc has the tools to collect and manage funds in a way that give it strength and an annuity over many years.”

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