AFP Philanthropy Awards Dinner
Sharon Harper, president and CEO of The Plaza Companies, was honored among other community leaders at the 28th Annual Association of Fundraising Professionals Greater Arizona Chapter Philanthropy Leadership Awards Dinner on Nov. 7. The dinner was held at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel. Harper was recognized for her excellence as Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser 2012 for her work with Valley nonprofits.
More than 530 nonprofit professionals, business leaders and colleagues attended the ceremony. The speaker was Andrew Watt, president and CEO of AFP International.
In addition to Harper, the event honored Fry’s Food Stores for Outstanding Corporation, Carlos Galindo-Elvira from Valley de Sol for Outstanding Fundraising Executive, and John and Dee Whiteman for Outstanding Philanthropists.
Through the Eyes of a Child
Children’s Action Alliance celebrated its 14th annual Through the Eyes of a Child Awards Luncheon and Youth Art Auction on Oct. 12. More than 400 people filled the ballroom at the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown to celebrate the achievements of three outstanding children’s medical centers: Banner Health Cardon Children’s Medical Center, Phoenix Children’s Hospital and The University of Arizona Medical Center – Diamond Children’s.
Students from the Arizona School for the Arts Percussion Ensemble performed during the program, and volunteers from the Camelback High School student government sold raffle tickets to benefit CAA. This year’s silent auction featured outstanding pottery created by the students at Desert Vista High School and photography from Brophy College Preparatory and Camelback High School, who donate their artistic pieces to CAA for sale in the auction.
The event netted $150,000 to fund Children’s Action Alliance’s mission of improving children’s health, education and security through information and action.
On Oct. 26 at the First Crush Charity Gala, the Tempe Community Action Agency honored former Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman with the Barbara R. Norton Service Award. The award recognizes individuals in the community who go above and beyond in addressing the needs of others. The dinner was held at Tempe Center for the Arts.
In 1966, Barbara Norton, along with civic activist and volunteer Renz Jennings Jr. , helped form the board for the new Tempe Community Action Program. Norton went on to found the Advocates for the Disabled, as well as serve with the Honorable Burton Barr and Monsignor Ed Ryle as founding board members of the Central Arizona Shelter Services. The award bestowed on Hallman is named in her honor.
Hallman served as a TCAA board member for many years and as mayor, established the Mayor’s run to support numerous nonprofit organizations.
The First Crush dinner was catered by Santa Barbara Catering Company. Alice Tatum and the Alice Tatum band provided the evening’s live entertainment. The evening raised $53,000 for TCAA.
Photos by Mike Hitt and Monica Tegg
Best of the West
More than 500 guests attended the gala to recognize outstanding contributions to the image, lifestyle and economy in the west Valley on Nov. 1 at the Renaissance Glendale Hotel. Westmarc launched the awards program two decades ago.
Luke Forward received Westmarc’s Special 20th Anniversary Best of the West Award for championing one of the West Valley’s biggest accomplishments, Luke Air Force Base landing the F-35 training center. Luke Forward co-chairs Elaine Scruggs and Charley Freericks received the award on behalf of the group.
Other Best of the West winners include Midwestern University, the West Valley Economic Engine Award; Arizona Metropolitan Trust, the West Valley Excellence in Innovation Award; Glendale Community College’s Changing Communities Through a Culture of Sustainability program, the West Valley Quality of Life Enhancement Award; Candace Wiest, the Westmarc Leadership Award; Elaine Scruggs, a Special Recognition Award; and Diane McCarthy, the John F. Long Lifetime Achievement Award.
Bright Lights Shining Stars
Midwestern University and community leaders honored individuals for their commitment to helping others at the annual Bright Lights Shining Stars gala Oct. 20.
Glendale resident and Valley broadcasting icon Al McCoy received the 2012 COMET (Community Outreach: Motivating Excellence for Tomorrow) Award, established by Midwestern University and the City of Glendale in 1999 to recognize outstanding individuals who have shown exemplary commitment to the community.
UMOM New Day Centers, the largest homeless shelter for families in Arizona, was honored with the Shooting Star Award, recognizing a community leader for outstanding contributions to health care and education.
The event, which raises more than $100,000 annually in scholarship funds for students in all of Midwestern University's colleges, also featured an outdoor reception, formal dinner, live entertainment and a silent auction.