“Innovation is doing anything different,” Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper recently told us during the 2015 Colorado Innovation Network (COIN) Summit. Since founding COIN in 2011, Governor Hickenlooper’s vision for Colorado as the forefront of technology, entrepreneurship and innovation has sprung to life with support from COIN’s network and resources.

Take a look below at our Innovation Timeline, which tracks just how far Colorado’s best and brightest have come in such a short time.


August 2011 – Governor John Hickenlooper calls for the establishment of the Colorado Innovation Network (COIN), an entrepreneur and technology-based coalition between the state government and private organizations to develop Colorado as a leader in all things innovation.


October 2012Galvanize Denver opens, becoming a beacon for the local startup community, offering access to shared workspaces, education, networking and investment opportunities.

August 2012 – NASA’s Curiosity rover, partially built by Denver’s Lockheed Martin Space Systems, lands on Mars.

December 2012 – Colorado physicist David Wineland wins the Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in developing experimental methods in observing quantum particles without destroying them.


January 2013 – Sierra Nevada Corporation and Lockheed Martin Space Systems partner on Dream Chaser programs, which include developing a new orbital crew transportation system, further advancing humanity’s reach into outer space.

February 2013Colorado OEDIT unveils Colorado InSite, an innovative system that aids businesses looking to enter the Colorado network by offering a central resource hub that includes a virtual map of Colorado’s assets and incentives for businesses.

October 2013Industry Denver co-working space opens, transforming the modern workplace for the modern worker by creating a space that encourages collaboration and a free exchange of ideas.


February 2014Market Street Station reinvents itself as Denver Union Station Transfer Center, ushering in a sleek, modern aesthetic and brand new commerce and transit opportunities.

February 2014 – President Obama announces that Colorado has been selected for National Advanced Manufacturing Technology Sites, receiving funding from the Department of Defense’s institutes for manufacturing innovation.

June 2014The U.S. Patent Office opens a satellite location in Denver, as they are clearly hip enough to know where the nation’s biggest and most inventive thinkers are congregating these days.


May 2015 – The Commons on Champa opens, functioning as a town square for startups and entrepreneurs and accelerating innovation in Colorado on a grand scale by fueling business development and nurturing new ideas into reality.

Needless to say, this timeline will only keep getting longer and more impressive as the innovative spirit of Colorado keeps pushing the envelope and driving forward some of the most high tech industries around. Who knows what next year will have in store! Rest assured that we’ll be there to cover it all on Innovators Peak.