Connect for Health Colorado® Chief Executive Honored for Contributions to Community

July 13, 2016
Contact: Luke Clarke 720-496-2545

DENVERConnect for Health Colorado® CEO Kevin Patterson was recently presented the Vikki Buckley Award during the Civil and Human Rights Dinner hosted by the African American Voice newspaper.

“I personally believe in the importance of publicly acknowledging and encouraging those leaders that are making a positive difference in our lives. By making the many benefits of the Affordable Care Act available to our community, Kevin is truly making a difference,” said James Tucker, publisher of the African American Voice in presenting the award.

Victoria “Vikki” Buckley was a Denver native who overcame challenging circumstances early in life to be elected to statewide office. She was a single mother of three who relied briefly on welfare benefits before completing her education and launching a successful political career. She was in her second term as Secretary of State —the only African American woman to hold the office — when she died of a heart attack in 1999 at age 51. Then Governor Bill Owens described Buckley as “a rising star that believed in making government work for people.”

As CEO of Connect for Health Colorado, the state’s health insurance Marketplace, Patterson leads the program that provides financial assistance for qualified buyers of private health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. There are currently more than 155,000 Coloradans enrolled in health coverage through the Marketplace.

The awards dinner was held on June 17th as part of the weekend long 2016 Juneteenth Caribbean Heritage Festival in Colorado Springs. Patterson was one of ten African Americans to be recognized during the dinner for their contributions to the greater Colorado community.

About Connect for Health Colorado
Connect for Health Colorado is a public, non-profit entity established by the Colorado General Assembly in 2011 to create a health insurance Marketplace.  It opened for business on Oct. 1, 2013, for individuals, families and small employers to compare and buy health insurance and is the only place to apply for financial assistance in the form of tax credits to help lower the monthly cost of premiums. Customers can shop online; get help by phone or online chat from Customer Service Center representatives; and access free, in-person assistance from a statewide network of certified Brokers, community-based Health Coverage Guides or Application Counselors. For more information: