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Not In Our Town Program Purpose

also see  Leadership Team, History, Pledge, Prevention team, Response team, Bylaws

The Not In Our Town program, which is referred to as NIOT, started in Billings, MT in 1993. There were many hate activities happening – KKK fliers were distributed, the Jewish cemetery was desecrated, the home of a Native American family was painted with swastikas and a brick was thrown through the window of a 6-year old boy who displayed a Menorah for Hanukkah.

Rather than resigning itself to the growing climate of hate, this community took a stand.  The police chief urged citizens to respond before the hate escalated any further. Religious groups from every denomination sponsored marches and candlelight vigils. The local labor union council passed a resolution against racism, anti-Semitism and homophobia.  Members of the local painters union pitched in to paint over racist graffiti.  The local newspaper printed full-page Menorahs that were subsequently displayed in nearly 10,000 homes and businesses.

This community made an unmistakable declaration: NOT IN OUT TOWN.  Since then, no serious acts of hate crime have been reported in Billings.

The NIOT program has been replicated successfully in over 100 cities across the US.  Many of the cities started this program in response to hate activities.  FC started the Not In Our Town Alliance, NIOTA, from a positive rather than a negative approach.  We started this as a pro-active, preventative approach in developing a community collaborative response.

The FC NIOT Alliance is an outgrowth of the 2004 Hate Crimes Ad Hoc Group that included local agency representatives and interested individuals exploring a process of better addressing issues of bias, discrimination, bigotry and hate motivated behavior in the community.  In December of 2004, the Hate Crimes Ad Hoc Group organized to become the NIOT Alliance.

Leadership Team
(alphabetical order)

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Cheryl Beckett

I am a founding member of NIOTA and have enjoying working on many phases as it unfolds.  My appreciation of diversity goes back to the 60s and the Civil Rights Movement when I worked to make others aware that when we suppressed others we hurt ourselves & society.

I have a BS & MS in psychology & child development from CSU. I also have PhD’s in Nutrition & in Consciousness. I had my own preschool for over 20 years. I simultaneously worked in the holistic health with The Life Awareness Center & The Mind/Body Connection. I teach the Transcendental Meditation Program & have taught TM in Spain, France, Germany, Switzerland & India. I have also taught Brain Gyms as CEU’s for teacher recertification.

I have been president of the Ft. Collins Interfaith Council and have been on the board of The Geller Center. Currently, my husband John & I live part time in Ft Collins and in Palm Desert, CA


Caroline Tu Farley

Board Member at Large

Caroline Tu Farley graduated from the University of Colorado with a Master’s Degree in Journalism/Education.  She has worked for Westword Newspaper (Advertising), Denver Broncos Football Club (Public Relations Dept), J. Walter Thompson Advertising Agency (Project Manager in NYC), Integrated Medical Systems (Trainer) and for Alaken Publishing (Business Manager).  Past volunteer experience consists of participating in several Asian American organizations in Denver, political organizations, the Fort Collins Human Relations Commissions (2003-2006), Poudre High School IB Parent Representative (2011-2013) and a current Board Member for Intercultural Community Builders ( She was a facilitator for the Community Response to Hate Seminar for the Mountain States Conference on Cults, Gangs and Hate Groups in April 2008 sponsored by the Rocky Mountain Resource Center (RMRC) and will help plan the 2014 Conference.  Caroline is one of the founding members of the Fort Collins Not in Our Town Alliance and has served as a Council Member since 2006.


Charlotte Miller

I am a retired Federal employee since 2007, having worked in three different agencies of the US Department of Agriculture since 1981 (in both Washington DC and Fort Collins) and previously in the Social Security Administration.  Earlier, I was an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Texas Christian University and at Georgia State University.  I received a Ph.D. in Anthropology with a certificate in Latin American Studies from the University of Florida.  During my career, I lived and/or worked overseas in Ecuador, Peru, and Brazil, and conducted temporary assignments for the Federal Government in many countries in Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe.

I am married to Rob Werge, also an anthropologist, for 37 years, and we have three grown children, Tom Werge, a lawyer in Denver, CO, Ingrid Werge, a psychiatric social worker in Providence, Rhode Island, and Jose Canas, a high School Spanish teacher in Hyattsville, MD.  We also have six grandchildren, Jose Canas Jr., age 14 of O’Fallon, MO; Alejandro (age 5) and Dylan Canas (age 1) of Hyattsville, MD, Freya Whitehead, (age 2) and Adelaide Whitehead (age 9 mos.)  of Cranston, RI and Miles Werge (age 3 mos.) of Denver, CO.  Rob and I have lived in Fort Collins since March 1997.

I am active in the non-profit sector in Larimer County.  I serve as President of the Board of Directors for Reflections for Youth a residential and day treatment facility in Loveland and Berthoud, Colorado.   I also am active with the Not In Our Town Alliance, an anti-hate group and the Eracism Film Series Committee.  I am an active member of the Fort Collins Friends Meeting, Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).  I have also been a volunteer in the public schools in Fort Collins.

I enjoy reading mysteries and other books; making quilts; and traveling, especially to visit family and friends.


Parker Preble

I am a retired psychiatrist who directed the Larimer County Mental Health Center from 1962-1975.

Later I was the Psychiatric Consultant to Centennial Mental Health Center, Northeastern Colorado, 1983-1992

Professional Activities

  • Colorado Medical Society Delegate, 1956, 1979-1983, 2000-present
  • Colorado Psychiatric Society Ethics Committee, 1969-1982
  • Colorado Psychiatric Society Peer Review Committee, 1972-1982
  • Chairman Department of Internal Medicine, Poudre Valley Hospital, 1979-1983
  • Chief of Staff, Poudre Valley Hospital 1979
  • Member of Executive Committee, Poudre Valley Hospital, 1979-1983

His later activities have been

  • American Medical Association, 1953-1980
  • Colorado Medical Association, 1954-present
  • Larimer County Medical Society, 1961-present
  • Board of Directors Larimer County Medical Society
  • Larimer County Mental Health Center: Medical Director 1991-1993; Staff 1993-March 1995
  • Mountain Crest Hospital: Medical Director of Senior Care Unit 1991-March 1995

I founded Fort Collins Human Relations Committee: Charter Member, 1965; Chairman, 1968-1971; 2000-present; current Chairman

  • Larimer County Sheriff Victim Advocate Team: 2001-2003
  • Larimer County Adult Protection Team: 1999-present
  • Larimer County Medical Emergency Corp: 2002-present
  • First Presbyterian Church: Teaching Elder
  • Downtown Rotary Club: Fort Collins, Colorado


I have been married for 68 years to retired attorney and former Ft. Collins mayor Mable Preble.  We have 4 children.

Lester Washington

I am a founding member of the Ft. Collins, NIOT Alliance and the head of the Response Team. I serve as the monitor for the email and voice mail system and after checking it, I forward the communications to the Board Members of NIOT Alliance.  We then meet to address the complaint until the matter is addressed or referred to the most competent agency that can fully address the matter to resolution on a local, city, state, or national level for Northern Colorado residents primarily.

As a Licensed and Lifetime Certified Guidance, Mental Health, Community Agency, Psychological, Spiritual and Community Agency Counselor and Educator, I assist the board in directing NIOT Alliance and fully addressing complaints. We then, after hearing a complaint,  determine if we can address it or refer the complainant to one of the more than 70 agencies we are allianced with in Northern Colorado.

We advise and refer people to state, national, and federal agencies as needed. It is not our job to use violent or self endangering protests and to do the policing work of local, state, or federal agencies but use them to assist anyone that is a victim of discriminations and hate crimes in Ft. Collins and Northern Colorado.


We, citizens of Fort Collins, CO, are combining our energies to address discrimination and bigotry which spawns the cancer of hate motivated behavior in our communities and institutions and want to help others do the same. When hate is expressed, the social fabric of our democracy unravels. We are committed to not letting that happen here, because together we proclaim “Not In Our Town”.

We pledge to take pro-active steps to act with heart and courage to create a community in which the humanity and dignity of every person is nurtured and preserved, preventing the escalation of hate motivated behavior and preserving basic civil rights for every citizen in our midst.

Addressing the causes and effects of prejudice, discrimination & hate motivated behavior.


The Prevention Team develops educational/awareness resources and assists with proactive anti-hate campaigns, programs, and events in the community.

The Prevention Team raises awareness of the mission, goals and strategies of FC-NIOTA and its supporting organizations.

Community members are invited to share their ideas and to participate with the Prevention Team in promoting its activities.
Contact the Prevention Team leader, Caroline Tu Farley, at:


When hate-motivated incidents occur in Fort Collins, the Response Team provides support to those that were affected by the incident, helping them feel safe and informing them of and assisting with access to appropriate resources.

Following an incident, the Response Team seeks to inform the larger community and encourages their personal commitment to create a community that is welcoming and respectful to everyone. The Response Team may organize visible community gatherings to further show solidarity with those that were affected by the incident and to demonstrate to the perpetrators of the incident that the community does not welcome such acts.

The Response Team welcomes additional members to the team.

HISTORY – Chronological order

We’ve had a long history of being influential in the Fort Collins Community:

Spring, 2004 – Hate Crimes Ad Hoc Group

Dec. 2004 – Hates Crimes Ad Hoc Group organized to become the NIOT Alliance

April 16, 2005 – NIOTA and the Fort Collins Human Relations Commission (HRC ) forum kickoff at City Hall.  Since then, we have developed both a Prevention and Response Team.

April 17, 2005 – Brick thrown through the window of the Islamic Center (reported 4/18), Targeted Group: Muslims

April 18, 2005 – Community members show their support for the Muslim community at
Islamic Center

April 20, 2005 – Hate Incident at CSU, Targeted Group: Diversity programs office/Women’s Studies Program

October 2005 – “Go back to Mexico”, Targeted Group: Latina (El Salvador)

October 2005 – CSU Hip Hop Explosion, Targeted Group: CSU Latina LAMBDA Women

October 12, 2005 – Employee accuses Albertsons manager of insulting Muslims, Targeted Group: Muslims

October 20, 2005 – Hate Incident at CSU, Targeted Group: African Americans

Feb. 15, 2006 – Racist Fliers on cars at CSU, Targeted Group: African Americans

Feb. 16, 2006 – NIOTA holds a community meeting to voice their concerns about racism
In our community

February 2006 – Repeated harassment from neighbor, Targeted Group: African American male

March 6, 2006 – Anti-black article circulated by State Representative Jim Welker, Targeted Group: African Americans

March 27, 2006 – Harassment at PSD, Targeted Group: multi-racial student

April 2006 – two CSU students who are gay were assaulted, Targeted Group: GLBT

May 23, 2006 – anti-gay message painted on the side of a truck, Targeted Group: GLBT

May 31, 2006 – Black woman from Tanzania was taken to jail for minor incident, Targeted Group: African American

July 18, 2006 – Neighbor continues spraying chemicals even after neighbor tells of life threatening allergy, Targeted Group: Person with environmental allergies

August 1, 2006 – Denny’s incident with 5 young adults and Sheriff’s Dept., Targeted Group: Multiple Minorities

August 25, 2006 – New West Fest incident/verbal abuse, Targeted Group: Jewish

Oct. 22, 2006 – Jewelstone Incident/”one less (sic) jew” – Targeted Group: Jewish

November 2006 – Cinemark 16 Theatre, Targeted Group: GLBT

Dec. 2007 – Anti Semitic fliers distributed in Parkwood neighborhood
Prior to Old Town Menorah lighting, Targeted Group: Jewish

2008-2011 Had Community Forums on School Bullying, etc.

2011 Premier Showing of the NIOT documentary “Light In The Darkness” It was followed by a Peace Chair Projects that schools Boys & Girls Club, several Church group participated in by taking links, writing on the link their wishes for peace and making a chain that was connected at Ft. Collins First Night Celebration

2012 Received at grant from the Colorado Gay & Lesbian Association as the community Non-profit in Colorado that did the most to enhance diversity

2013 Helped fund the Peace Circles Project that Kiri Saftler did at elementary schools in Ft. Collins

Current Bylaws in PDF format

The Bylaws of an organization are the “rules” by which they seek to govern themselves.   The Fort Collins Not in our Town Alliance Bylaws are a model by which an organization with diverse members can collectively make good collaborative decisions.

Click here for PDF copy:   bylaws