A Colorado native, Kerry has the cultural spirit of the state, especially of the western slope, running in her veins. She values informed decision-making that is respectful, attentive, and above all representative.
Kerry runs her family ranch just up the road from Edwards. The Donovan’s have owned Copper Bar Ranch since the early 80’s, although the land’s history extends back to the Homestead Act. The Copper Bar Ranch is a small business that is focused on proven homesteading practices. Kerry raises Highland Cattle, has a number of garden plots that produce vegetables for area restaurants, a noisy flock of chickens, as well as horses and mules and lastly, her dog Gary rounds out the ranch.
Kerry attended The University of Notre Dame where she earned a Bachelor of Science, pre-professional degree with a focus on anthropology. After graduating from college, Kerry worked as an archeologist throughout the Rockies in cultural resource management. She then worked for the Vail Valley Foundation and as Director of the Minturn Community Fund – both non-profits focused on serving local communities.
Kerry most recently served as Director of Academics for the Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy. Founded in 2007, this 5th-12th grade public school is the first of its kind in the country. As an educator, Kerry added an extra level of support for the students who needed a little boost, and also served as the liaison between the many entities involved in this innovative public school.
Kerry’s parents moved to Vail in its earliest years. Her father, John, arrived during Vail’s first winter with his best friend from kindergarten. They soon started a successful business. Her mother, Diana, came a couple years later at the urging of a family friend whom they had met while her father was stationed in Europe. Together they ran one of Vail’s earliest famous landmarks – Donovan’s Copper Bar. Next, the family waded into the trash collection business starting Vail Honeywagon, which Kerry’s bother Matt still runs today. Her other brother, John, maintains the family’s bar tradition by pouring drinks for guest and locals alike in Vail Village.
Early on in her life, Kerry’s parents instilled in her a strong sense of community involvement and the importance of creating a legacy worthy of your name. She believes that whether you are building fences through tough terrain or sitting around a conference table, problem solving can be bruising, but there is always a way through.
Kerry’s exposure to politics and community service came early, as her parents served extensively on town boards and participated in community activism – including fighting water diversion projects that would take water away from the western slope and central Colorado. Additionally, Kerry’s grandfather, Bill Mounsey, was involved very early in the wilderness movement, as he sought to maintain wild places where he found solace after serving in the army.
Kerry was elected to the Vail Town Council in 2009, and as a top vote-getter, won a four year term. While serving her term, Kerry focused on conservation, historic character preservation, fiscal responsibility, and economic growth. Previously, she has served on various other town commissions and non-profit boards.
Kerry also volunteers for a variety of causes and groups. Her main volunteer focus is a group called the Talon Crew, which she serves on as a coordinator. The Talon Crew is comprised of hundreds of people who volunteer to put on the world cup ski race in the Vail Valley each winter. Over the years, they have earned the reputation of being the best course maintenance crew in the world. Other days of the year, you will find her serving lasagna to the Vail Veterans Wounded Warrior program or participating in the annual river clean-up.