About Us



COCO, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that serves coalitions and collaboratives. It was started by the Coalition for the Upper South Platte in 2014 as a way of increasing on-the-ground, stakeholder-driven conservation.

For our purposes, coalitions and collaboratives are stakeholder-driven organizations that include stakeholder representatives from government entities, other nonprofit organizations, and the public. We define coalitions as formal 501(c)(3) organizations, and collaboratives as informal organizations. A collaborative may be a stepping stone to a coalition; it may be a short-term informal organization that lives only for the time of a specific project or program, or it may remain in existence for years but not feel compelled to become a formal nonprofit corporation. COCO Inc. member organizations may use coalition or collaborative in their name as outlined above, or may use a different naming convention, but whether an organization is a coalition or a collaborative, to be a member of COCO, it shall commit to the following tenets of collaborative conservation and the principles that made the Coalition for the Upper South Platte, initiator of COCO, Inc. successful:

  1. It must be highly accountable, transparent, and ethical.
  2. It must be inclusive (for example, not just made up of government entities, though government entities must be directly invested; various nongovernmental stakeholders must also be represented).
  3. It must be driven by strong consensus.
  4. It must work on a watershed or ecosystem landscape basis.
  5. It must employ best-available science and adaptive management.
  6. It must work for people and the planet within its selected area.
  7. It must engage and educate citizens in issues.
  8. It must not be, in its own right, a strong advocacy group, though stakeholders within a coalition or collaborative may be strong advocates through their respective positions and the groups they represent in a coalition or collaboration. When it does engage in advocacy, it must be based on a strong consensus with input from all stakeholders, and review by COCO leadership.

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