Archived Names & Faces


Hopper, Sally H.

Written by Linda Kirkpatrick on .


Hopper, Sally H.

(1934 - )

Sally Hunter was born in Dayton, Kentucky to a pastor in the Episcopal church. The family experienced several moves – to Louisville, Kentucky; San Antonio, Texas; and then Laramie, Wyoming where her father was named the Episcopal Bishop of the state.

She graduated from the University of Wyoming in 1956 and married George W. Hopper. When he accepted a job as an attorney with the Securities and Exchange Commission in 1960, they relocated to Colorado – first Broomfield and later Lookout Mountain – and had four daughters who attended Jefferson County schools.

Sally was involved with the girls’ activities growing up, active in the PTA groups and as a Girl Scout leader for years. She was also active in the St. James Episcopal Church in Wheat Ridge.

She served as a Republican precinct chairman and helped numerous candidates get elected. When an open seat for the Colorado Senate came up (no incumbent running), Sally was convinced she should run to fill it. The candidates she’d help get elected did the same for her, and she received enough votes to represent seven counties in Colorado: Pitkin, Eagle, Summit, Clear Creek, Gilpin and the mountainous portions of Boulder and Jefferson Counties, including Evergreen.

While campaigning, her husband of 29 years died after a short illness, just three months before the election. “He didn’t want me to drop out, and being elected to serve a large district proved to be a valuable diversion,” she said.

When elected, she was one of just five women in the thirty-five-member Senate body. “A lot [of the Senators] were not used to working with women in the legislature,” she said, but they just “thought of me as another guy.”

Covering seven counties took a lot of energy, she admitted, but “it was wonderful for me.” The district was comprised of small communities – “a treat for me because I could meet a lot of people. I met the leaders over and over and got to know the issues.” She subscribed to the 21 local newspapers representing those counties, knowing her constituents read the newsweeklies, allowing her to keep in touch.

She served three terms in the State Senate from 1987 to 1999, retiring because of term limits. Among her accomplishments, she was Chairman of the committee on Health, Environment, Welfare and Institutions (1989-99). She was a member of Criminal Justice Commission – formed in 1993 after the “Summer of Violence” – for its duration (and Chairman for a time). Among other legislation carried, she was the Senate sponsor of the Child Health Plan, which provides insurance coverage for children of working parents who do not qualify for employer-provided health insurance or Medicaid.

Since retirement she has served on more than a dozen boards, including the George W. Hopper Family Foundation, formed by Sally and her four daughters to support programs serving middle school age girls, an age that’s often overlooked and needing help with self-esteem, she points out.

Other boards include: the Rose Foundation, Historic Georgetown, Inc., Colorado Preservation, Inc., Colorado Independent Ethics Commission, Board of Advisors to National Trust for Historic Preservation, Partners for Access to the Woods – devoted to accessibility for the disabled.

Source:  Interview with Sally Hopper


deDisse, Suzie

Written by Linda Kirkpatrick on .


Suzie deDisse


Co-founder of the Evergreen Animal Protective League in 1981; Evergreen's Person of the Year in 1985.



Davidson, Harold G.

Written by Linda Kirkpatrick on .



Hal Davidson

1926 - 2014

Hal moved to Evergreen in 1946 seeking relief from the asthma that had plagued him in Ohio.  His parents relocated with him and developed Davidson's Lodge along Bear Creek between Evergreen and Kittredge.

He was regarded as the longest-established Realtor in Evergreen (1950-1982) spanning a period starting when Evergreen's year-round population was about 500 with only a few real estate offices, through the early 1980s when there were more than 300 real estate agents at work, to the mid 80s when the number of agents had declined to about half.  He and Don Shephard founded the Evergreen Board of Realtors in 1966, the predecessor of the Mountain Metro Association of Realtors, an organization that stresses ethics and education for its members.  He served as president of the Board of Realtors and was named Realtor of the Year in 1975.


Buchanan, Darst E.

Written by Margo Hamilton on .



Darst Buchanan

(1892 - 1960)


Darst Buchanan was born on a farm in Kima, Ohio in 1892, the oldest child with two sisters trailing behind. Completing his education at age 13, which is far as his one-room school would take him, Darst moved with his family to St. Mary’s, Ohio, where he worked as a timekeeper on a railroad’s track maintenance crew. He moved to Tulsa with his bride Ruth (Peake), the girl next door when they both lived in Springfield, Missouri. They wed in 1912.

Landing a job with Chestnut and Smith, the largest producers of natural gasoline, the dapper and dashing Scotsman worked his way up to vice president. Fate led Darst to further his fortune when he joined forces with three other Chestnut and Smith associates to establish their own natural gas production company, Hanon-Buchanan, Inc. The company grew into five companies which handled pipelines, manufacturing and production.

Darst served as the Federal Petroleum Coordinator under Harold Ickes in the U.S. Department of the Interior, and he was the American Petroleum Industry representative to the International Petroleum Congress in Paris in 1938.

Destiny brought Darst and Ruth to Evergreen in the 1920’s in the guise of attending an oil convention in Denver. Convention attendees were bused to Evergreen to spend recreational time at the Troutdale-in-the-Pines Hotel. The year was 1923, and Evergreen was nothing more than a very small mountain community with more summering tourists than year-round residents. Dirt roads led to a quaint downtown that had little more than the Olde's Texaco, a restaurant known as the Hamilton Tea Room, the old hotel, The Round Up, a drug store and Mickey’s Groceries, which also housed the post office.

Without hesitation, the Buchanans brought their daughters to Evergreen for several summers following, renting cabins hither and yon to capture every corner and crevice of their new-found paradise. Ruth and the girls spent several summers in rented cabins with Darst able to spend only a brief amount of time in the family’s treasured vacation spot due to the demands of his business.

Becoming a rancher continued to be Darst’s deepest desire, and he considered ranch land in Wagon Mound, New Mexico. In the summer of 1938, Darst’s dream became a reality. Ruth had found more than an Evergreen summer cottage to rent in Evergreen. She found a sweet cabin nestled in a gorgeous meadow. This now-historic site was then named Camp Neosho; now we know it as the Hiwan Homestead. The Buchanans bought the “cabin” and property – roughly 1,100 acres – for about $50,000.

On March 30, 1938, Darst started a series of land purchases. Some were warranty deeds purchased from private owners; some were treasure deeds purchased from a governmental entity; and some were quit claims. It is said their ranch expanded to as much as 30,000 acres, including land purchased and leased, and extended from Independence Mountain south of downtown Evergreen to Golden, back to Idaho Springs and all the way to Central City. Darst also purchased a separate ranch “down the hill” known as the Wadsworth Ranch.

Darst was known for breeding high-grade Hereford cattle, and the Hiwan Ranch was considered one of the top five registered Hereford breeding ranches in the United States.

in 1947 he paid $61,000 for a prized Hereford bull named WHR Helmsman 89th. In 1948 he built the Showbarn on Meadow Drive to house it; the structure is now home to the Evergreen Design Center.

Commercial purchases expanded the Buchanan portfolio when he bought the Round-Up, which had once housed the drug store and soda fountain; the property is now known as The Little Bear. With several business partners, including son-in-law John Casey, Darst purchased the Evergreen Lumber Company, which operated a sawmill and built homes immediately south of Main Street, along Douglas Park Road.

If the Buchanan name isn’t familiar to you, the name of their ranch is, as Ruth bestowed the “Hiwan” moniker upon the prestigious property herself. Hiwan is an Anglo-Saxon term for ‘plot of land for a family,’ and the Buchanans had a desire to develop their land for the benefit of future generations to enjoy.

In 1954 John and Darst pioneered Hiwan Development Company, introducing city water and sewer capabilities into their developments, including Hiwan Hills, which housed the Buchanan’s 10,000 turkeys before being transformed into a cozy subdivision of approximately 250 homesites in the 1950s and 60s.

John had a dream to create a subdivision and golf course in what was once prized pasture land for the Buchanan Herefords. Several houses were built before the 7,155-yard course that covers the 170-acre golf course was created in 1962. Noted golf course architect Presley Maxwell was hired to design the course. It was an expensive venture and quite a learning experience, but well worth the effort and expense. President Dwight D. Eisenhower wanted a personal tour of the course and development shortly after it opened.  Over the next 50 years, more than 500 homes would be built around the golf course as part of the country club.  Other subdivisions would also carry the Hiwan name.

When Darst retired in 1952, the family moved to Cherry Hills, keeping the Hiwan Homestead for a summer home. Daughter Joan Landy would make it a year-round home for about 10 years raising her family there. Subsequent to its sale to a developer, the property would be purchased by Jefferson County Open Space as a museum in 1974 and placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

In 1996 Evergreen Park and Recreation District named an expanding recreational area in north Evergreen “Buchanan Park” in recognition of the Buchanan legacy.

Photo credit:  Jefferson County Historical Society


Kirkpatrick, Linda

Written by Staff Editor on .



Linda Kirkpatrick

(1947 - )


A native of Montgomery, New York, Linda graduated from Katharine Gibbs in Boston before heading West to Colorado in 1968.  In 1981 she married John Kirkpatrick and moved to Evergreen.

Her interest in volunteer work began with the opening of Craig Rehabilitation Hospital in about 1970.  In 1980/81 she co-chaired the Cystic Fibrosis Celebrity Pro-Am Tennis Tournament.  

Volunteerism would become her passion in life, only to be surpassed by her passion for the Evergreen community.

Evergreen accomplishments:

• Conducted the community campaign (without a support committee) to build an ambulance facility when ambulance service was provided entirely by volunteers, and spearheaded rezoning and purchase of land, barn-raising, raising $150,000 from the community, 1983-85 • Brought Bootstraps back from the brink of financial disaster, putting it on firm financial ground prior to merger with Evergreen Scholarship – 1988-90 • Coordinated Snooty Loot, a one-time, one-day upscale resale event for Mt. Evans Hospice, raising $30,000, 1998 • Co-founded Leadership Evergreen in 1995, creating first curriculum, forming the first board, raising the money for startup and scholarships, and leading the first class • Organized community-wide reception and tour of Evergreen for 60 travel writers from all over Colorado for the Chamber of Commerce (2005)

Land-protection efforts

• Co-chaired the community campaign to raise $200,000 in 4 1/2 months to Save Noble Meadow - 408 strategic acres, including the site for Buchanan Rec Center and related ballfields (1995) • Worked with the Mountain Area Land Trust in the year following the Noble Meadow campaign to establish a presence in the community and to raise enough money to hire its first Executive Director; 8 years later became the Executive Director • Coordinated the Evergreen Land Community Coalition (ELCC) effort to acquire land for the expansion of Buchanan Park from 4 to 66 acres – raised $125,000 in 6 months, handled campaign for passage of bond issue, coordinated first Master Planning process • Worked with ELCC on a community campaign resulting in the creation of the 17-acre Stagecoach Park


• Founded and published Upbeat, a monthly newspaper with a distribution of 12,500 that focused on volunteerism and community involvement – owned for 6 years, sold the business in 1996 • Designed and produced fundraising brochures, newsletters, and publications numerous nonprofit organizations • Created 5-minute QuickTime movie of Evergreen for national media on behalf of Chamber of Commerce • For 4 years published a photo column (On Location) in the Canyon Courier publicizing nonprofit events • Created the online community publication in November of 2010, promoting civic engagement and civility, documenting biographically more than 150 of those who’ve played significant roles in the development of Evergreen, profiling another 250 involved citizens, and working to encourage newcomers to become involved with community • Photographed and chronicled community happenings on a weekly basis for 7 years

Awards and distinctions:

• Minoru Yasui Community Volunteer Award (one of the first recipients outside of Denver, 1985) • Evergreen Ambulance building dedicated to her in 1985 • Jefferson County Sheriff’s Commendation (first citizen recipient, 1986) for helping to apprehend two individuals connected with 65 break-ins of homes in Evergreen • Evergreen Community Service Award (1991) • 50 for Colorado graduate (statewide leadership program, class of 1994) • MVP Award for Noble Meadow Task Force (1995) • Small Business of the Year (Upbeat, 1995, awarded by Evergreen Area Chamber of Commerce) • Daughters of the American Revolution Award for Excellence in Community Service (1996) • Jeffco Action Center Outstanding Volunteer (2004) • Lifetime Leadership Award from Leadership Evergreen (2015) • Uniquely Evergreen award (, awarded by the Evergreen Area Chamber of Commerce, 2012) • Profiled in Evergreen, Our Mountain Community (Sternberg) • named one of the top 150 most contributing citizens in Jefferson County, Colorado – A Unique & Eventful History! (Lomond) • inducted into the Jefferson County Historical Hall of Fame 2020 • inducted into the Mountain Area Women in Business Hall of Fame (2021).


Updated 3/3/23