COVID-19 & the CU Anschutz Community

April 10, 2020

A Message from Chancellor Elliman

It is with a heavy heart that I share news of the tragic loss endured by Sergeant Kevin Lyster, an officer in the University Police Department, and his family. Sergeant Lyster’s son, Cody, passed away of complications due to COVID-19 earlier this week. Cody, just 21 years old, was a student at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction. He was pursuing a degree in criminal justice and played club baseball for CMU. His passing is a solemn reminder that the novel coronavirus can impact anyone at any age. Please join me in keeping Sergeant Lyster and his family in your thoughts at this time of unimaginable loss for one of our own.

Take care of yourselves, and one another, and know that we are here for you.


Don Elliman

COVID-19 Status Reporting

As you know, students, staff and faculty who believe they have been exposed to COVID-19 or have tested positive for COVID-19 need to report that status to the university so that the university can provide support for those individuals. There have been a number of individuals who have asked whether the university will share the reported information to known colleagues or coworkers of students, staff or faculty members who submit such reports.

CU Anschutz will, in conjunction with the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE), communicate as necessary if there is a danger of significant exposure to individuals who were in direct contact with individuals who have reported a positive COVID-19 test result. However, the university is prohibited by law from sharing the contents of any report it receives, including the name of the individual who made the report, and will keep the contents of the report confidential. See 42 U.S.C. 12112(d) of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

Boettcher Foundation Innovation Fund RFP

This week, the Boettcher Foundation announced a $1 million biomedical research fund to fight COVID-19, called the COVID Biomedical Research Innovation Fund. The grant program is focusing on advancing projects that could impact lives today, or help build Colorado’s capacity and resilience for future pandemics. Colorado-based researchers and investigators can submit grant applications through 5 p.m., Friday, April 17.

Using Zoom Safely

With the transition to online meetings and events across the country, universities including ours have been impacted by “Zoombombing” - a form of harassment in which uninvited participants join Zoom events in session and disrupt them, sometimes with hate speech or offensive images. There are easy steps you can take to protect yourself from this activity, and more information on Zoom and cyber security is available from the Office of Information Technology. If you are a victim of harassment online, please report it to the Office of Equity.

Parking Updates

Parking updates announced yesterday explained that students, faculty and staff who have purchased or prepaid permits will receive refunds for the second half of March, and that parking fees for employees have been suspended for the months of April and May. Contact the parking office at 303-724-2555 or with questions.

COVID-19 Fighters

Every day, CU Anschutz healthcare professionals, students, faculty and staff are doing their part to help fight this pandemic and protect our health. A new feature in the CU Anschutz newsroom allows you to share stories and photos of the heroes among us. Submit your COVID-19 Fighters story in the newsroom.

Special Edition of The Human Touch 

The Human Touch, the CU Anschutz community’s anthology of poetry, prose, photography and visual arts, is inviting submissions in response to COVID-19 for an online publication and eventual journal, The Curve. Submit your creative content online.

Campus Resources & Reminders

  • Epidemiology and COVID-19: The Colorado School of Public Health is holding a webinar titled “The COVID-19 Pandemic and Colorado: Epidemiology in Action,” on Monday, April 13. Learn more and register online.
  • COVID-19 Support Sessions: The Helen and Arthur E. Johnson Depression Center is holding Tuesday and Thursday evening Zoom sessions on topics such as hope and happiness, and parenting in the time of COVID. Learn more and register online.
  • Mental Health Resources: You can find information on coping with uncertainty, resiliency planning, and more on the Department of Psychiatry's COVID-19 website.
  • Slowing Community Spread: Please help slow community spread of COVID-19. Stay home, minimize social interaction and travel, and practice social/physical distancing to stay healthy and safe.
In addition to these Friday afternoon updates, we will continue to send communications as the rapidly changing situation warrants. Please visit for the latest information.