The Belzley Family lives a life of active philanthropy.
For Seth and Cody Belzley, philanthropy really is a family affair. Both Midwesterners, they were raised in families where service and philanthropy were embedded in everyday life. Seth recalls formative experiences from his childhood in Tulsa, such as serving meals to people experiencing homelessness in the Lutheran church where his grandfather pastored. Cody, originally from Cincinnati, remembers volunteering with her mom at a thrift shop benefitting the local children’s hospital and attending the American Institute for Public Service’s annual Jefferson Awards at the U.S. Supreme Court Chamber.
These are the same experiences and values they are working to instill in their children — Liza, age 9, and Cooper, age 7.
“Our daughter is a Spark Change Agent at her school,” says Cody. “Spark Change is a program that engages elementary school students to raise money, identify and research challenges facing the community and then distribute funds to community nonprofits through ‘mini-grants.’”
Since moving to Denver in 2002, Seth and Cody have embedded themselves in the community by volunteering. Seth currently serves on The Denver Foundation’s Board of Trustees. The couple’s combined board service includes work with Mental Health Colorado, The Denver Scholarship Foundation, Mile High Early Learning, and Colorado Access.
The Belzleys’ dedication to giving is rooted in their upbringing and focused on family and faith. “We are privileged in so many ways and grateful for the many opportunities we’ve had. We believe that as the book of Luke says: ‘To whom much is given, much is required,'" says the couple.
“We’ve found that dedicating our time and talents to nonprofit and community organizations is tremendously rewarding…and almost selfish, as we benefit so significantly from the opportunity to engage and serve,” says Cody. “We both firmly believe that what we get from giving far surpasses the value of what we give.” As a family, they see firsthand the impact of their time and support. Beyond financial giving, their philanthropy connects them with their community and new people.
“Seth has had the opportunity to serve on the board of The Denver Scholarship Foundation since 2014. Each year at their annual gala dinner, we meet scholars who have benefitted from the generosity of the community and advanced themselves and their families as a result of having the chance to pursue higher education and attain a certificate or degree,” says Cody. “Meeting these students, sharing dinner with them, and learning about their successes and their hopes for the future is an incredibly powerful and inspiring experience.”
As members of The Denver Foundation’s Community Legacy Society, the Belzleys have ensured that their philanthropic legacy will live on. Their donor-advised fund will receive the bulk of their charitable estate and become an endowed field of interest fund that will provide annual support to organizations working in their main areas of interest — education and health and human services — forever. Their thoughtful planning is fitting for a family that has dedicated themselves to bettering the future of our community for nearly two decades.