Photo: Josh Johnson


Teddy Errico '91

In 1996, Teddy Errico '91 moved to Telluride, Colorado, planning to stay for six months. Twenty-seven years later, he's the resort town's newest mayor.

In 1996, when New York native Teddy Errico ’91 moved to Telluride, Colorado, for an internship at a ski mountain, he planned to stay for six months. Twenty-seven years later, Errico was elected in fall of 2023 as mayor of the famed ski resort town, a community of 2,500 that uses a gondola as its primary mode of public transportation. He plans to keep his full-time job as a real estate agent.

Telluride is teeny tiny. It’s a historic mining town that sits in a remote box canyon. The town of Mountain Village, which has several hotels, sits on the other side of Telluride Ski Resort, and a gondola connects the two communities. You can use it to go skiing, but its main purpose is to get people from the heart of one town to the other in a fifteen-minute ride, which is more environmentally sensitive than driving twenty minutes.

Tourism is the primary economic engine here. During New Year’s week, the population swells to almost fifteen thousand people. When it gets crowded on a powder day and we all want to go skiing or get a restaurant reservation, it can make locals downright angry. But you can’t just be mean to tourists, because we need them. Part of my goal is to help the community retain a spirit of friendliness.

In Telluride, the mayor is the ceremonial leader of the town. I have the same amount of power as members of the town council. I also oversee the town manager and the town attorney and set the agenda for meetings. It’s around twenty hours per week of work, so I can balance it with selling real estate.

It’s important to fight the “us versus them” mentality. Second-home owners here are very affluent, and it creates a divide between the upper class and the dying-off middle class. We also have a consistently growing year-round Latino and Eastern European population. As mayor, my job is to figure out how to make sure everybody feels like they have a voice and can love it here, because it’s an easy place to fall in love with.