D-backs Foundation Donates $1M-Plus to Community

The crack of the bat is sorely missing from Arizona spring’s, but the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation is bringing relief in another way. On March 23, the Foundation announced the donation of $550,000 to Arizona-based nonprofit organizations that will assist in helping those most vulnerable during the current national emergency.

“Over the past 10 days, we have watched the heroic efforts of so many Arizonans who are helping those in need—from medical professionals to local food banks and child-care operations that have opened their doors to those working long hours to keep our community running,” said Ken Kendrick, D-backs managing general partner, at the time of the donation. “We are so grateful to be a part of such a special place and to be in the position to give back at a time like this.”

One week after the March 23 announcement, the Foundation announced the donation of an additional $500,000 to immediately assist in helping those most vulnerable, bringing the franchise’s current total to more than $1 million.

“We are fortunate to not only be in a position to continue to give back, but to be in touch regularly with those in the medical field who can help distribute these funds in a meaningful way,” said Derrick Hall, D-backs president and CEO. “Whether it is personal protective equipment, critical resources to support health-care personnel or technology to provide virtual visits for those currently receiving care, we believe this money can make an immediate impact.”

The Foundation’s initial donation of $550,000 was spread among numerous nonprofit organizations that focus on emergency food supply and distribution as well as support for children of working health-care professionals. The second donation will address that growing need in addition to benefiting those in the medical/health-care fields.

The Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation and team will continue to monitor the situation in the event additional assistance can be made available if necessary.


Assistance League of Phoenix Book Drive

Assistance League of Phoenix has been serving the Phoenix area for more than 55 years. The organization partners with more than 90 Title 1 schools throughout the year, bringing its Operation School Bell program to more than 8,500 students each year through the Delivering Dreams buses and satellite dressing center located in Sunnyslope.

Many of these low-income schools are in need of books for children K-8 while schools are closed during the coronavirus crisis. Assistance League of Phoenix has been filling the void by donating books they typically hand out during Operation School Bell.

“While our buses and dressing center are temporarily closed, we are trying to help provide reading for low-income students who don’t have access to books,” says Aimee Runyon, CEO of Assistance League of Phoenix. “We want to keep the children busy and their minds working while they are out of school. All of the students we serve come from Title I schools and likely don’t have many resources at home, and with libraries closed it’s difficult for them to get access to books.”

The community can help by dropping off gently used or new books at the Assistance League offices in Sunnyslope. Office hours are 8 a.m.–4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Drop-off arrangements will be made to avoid direct contact with staff. Please call 602-955-7636.

If you are able, you may also purchase books online and ship them to:

Assistance League of Phoenix
9224 N. Fifth St.
Phoenix, AZ 85020

Desert Financial Donates to 5 Valley Nonprofits

Desert Financial Credit Union will donate $500,000 in emergency funds to five Valley nonprofits supporting critical community needs in the wake of COVID-19. United Food Bank and St. Mary’s Food Bank will each receive $150,000 from the credit union, while Midwest and Desert Mission food banks will each receive $50,000. Valley of the Sun United Way will receive an additional $100,000.

“We are making this donation immediately in order to support these vital nonprofits with distributing essential resources,” says Jeff Meshey, president and CEO of Desert Financial. “We are a local credit union with an 80-year history in the Valley, and we are committed to helping this community—our community—through this unprecedented challenge.”

More than 650,000 Maricopa County households were struggling to meet basic needs as recently as last month, according to some sources. With the arrival and resulting fallout of COVID-19, that number has already increased exponentially.

St. Mary’s Food Bank reported that the demand for their emergency food boxes doubled overnight. United Food Bank was expecting to serve three times as many individuals in the coming week.

Desert Financial’s food bank donations are strategically placed to reach communities across the state, helping make more resources available to more of those in need.

The Valley of the Sun United Way donation will go to a COVID-19 response fund addressing critical needs as they arise.

Desert Financial plans to continue working with existing nonprofit partners and the broader community to identify emergency needs. Work has already begun in this area.

Arizona Gives Day

Respondents to An Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits survey of nonprofit organizations statewide shows that almost 90 percent have been or expect to be significantly impacted by the spread of COVID-19. As of March 20, that put the projected loss of revenue at $29,946,350, much of the loss from canceled events. In addition, the coronavirus has caused a disruption of services to clients and communities.

Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits has collaborated with Arizona Grantmakers Forum for Arizona Gives Day, a 24-hour online fundraising campaign on April 7 presented by First Bank.

Expanded support from the day includes:

  • An Emergency Relief Fund giving donors the option to increase donations as an add-on at checkout or through direct donation at azgives.org/aznonprofits. All funds will be distributed equally among participating nonprofits.
  • Re-opening registration to allow organizations that had to cancel fundraisers, programs and other events that originally chose not to participate to be able to benefit from the fundraiser. The new registration deadline is March 27.
  • A group of donors has provided separate funding enabling the Alliance to waive payment processing fees normally paid by nonprofits participating in Arizona Gives Day, allowing more funds to go directly to the nonprofits.

Since 2013, Arizona Gives Day has generated $17 million in donations to Arizona nonprofits with $3.6 million donated in 2019.

For more information about the Nonprofit Emergency Relief Fund, visit azgives.org/relief fund. For more information about the Arizona Gives Day, visit azgives.org.

Thunderbirds Provide $1M in Emergency Community Funding

The Thunderbirds, hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open, are providing $1 million in emergency funding to assist Arizona charities during this time of uncertainty. The money is ready to be granted immediately, and funds have already been donated to Boys and Girls Clubs of the Valley, St. Mary’s Food Bank and St. Vincent de Paul. The Thunderbirds will continue to evaluate the situation and will hand out the remainder of the money over the next few weeks as other priority needs arise.

“Thanks to the tremendous community support every year of the Waste Management Phoenix Open, The Thunderbirds are able to give to so many worthy charities. We are in unprecedented times. We felt, as an organization, it was imperative to act quickly and get much needed funds to help those in dire need right now,” says Chance Cozby, Big Chief of The Thunderbirds.

5th Annual Foster Family Fun Day

On March 8, Arizona Helping Hands hosted its fifth annual Foster Family Fun Day at Arizona Sunrays Gymnastic and Dance Center. More than 200 foster children gathered for a fun day. The afternoon included gymnastics and dance classes, bounce attractions, special character guests courtesy of Storybook Entertainment, Papa John’s pizza, raffle prizes and crafts.

“Foster Family Fun Day is an opportunity for families in foster care to just have an opportunity to relax and play. Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics and Dance Center opened up their doors again this year to allow boys and girls to play on the equipment or to participate in a dance class. Moms and dads were able to sit back and breathe easy for a few hours, a welcome relief to parents raising 2, 4, 6 and even 8 children. It’s not easy to find a free family activity for such large groups. Seeing the smiles on the faces of children—and their foster parents—made this a very special afternoon,” says Dan Shufelt, Arizona Helping Hands president and CEO.


A Virtual Visit to the Zoo

In this time of social distancing, the Phoenix Zoo is temporarily closed, but it is still providing experiences that inspire and motivate people to care for the natural world. Among its offerings is live educational programmingvirtual safaris, cute photos and videos of animals, and behind-the-scenes caretaking by zookeepers.

David Schacher Photography LLC

The Zoo is also providing daily social media feeds, especially through Instagram. On the Digital Safari page, you will find links to YouTube videos, blog posts and more to keep children engaged while they are at home. The Zoo will also be offering a mixture of new content on the daily at 1 p.m.

These programs are free. Check the Zoo’s website for more information.

Phoenix Zoo is one of the largest nonprofit, privately funded zoos in the nation, caring for more than 3,000 animals, with almost 400 species represented, many of which are considered threatened or endangered species. During this time of temporary closure, there are no ticket sales, a major source of funding for the Zoo. Give generously if you can.



Halle Foundation Gives $25K Grant to Devereux

The Diane and Bruce Halle Foundation recently awarded a $25,000 grant to support Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health Arizona’s Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children program. The money will be used to train Devereux Arizona’s approximately 400 employees, including direct support professionals, teachers, clinicians, nurses and supervisors, on how to identify, assess and assist youth ages 5 to 17 who have experienced emotional, physical and sexual trauma as a result of commercial sexual exploitation.

Devereux Arizona offers individual and group therapy to address the complex trauma of sexually exploited youth. Funds from this grant will be used to purchased CSEC training materials and youth assessments for Devereux Arizona staff, as well as educational materials and other resources for children and adolescents enrolled in the CSEC program.The Diane and Bruce Halle Foundation recently awarded a $25,000 grant to support Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health Arizona’s Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children program. The money will be used to train Devereux Arizona’s approximately 400 employees, including direct support professionals, teachers, clinicians, nurses and supervisors, on how to identify, assess and assist youth ages 5 to 17 who have experienced emotional, physical and sexual trauma as a result of commercial sexual exploitation.

Devereux Arizona offers individual and group therapy to address the complex trauma of sexually exploited youth. Funds from this grant will be used to purchased CSEC training materials and youth assessments for Devereux Arizona staff, as well as educational materials and other resources for children and adolescents enrolled in the CSEC program.

100+ Women Who Care Donates $11K to nonprofit

100+ Women Who Care Valley of the Sun donated $11,150 to the Scottsdale-based Voices for CASA Children, a nonprofit organization that provides CASA volunteers (Court Appointed Special Advocates) to children navigating the foster-care system.

The philanthropic group of 100-plus women meets quarterly to create an immediate and positive impact on the community. Members nominate local charities that are important to them. Three charities are presented at each giving circle, the members vote and the charity with the most votes is that quarter’s recipient. Nikki Ballin, a member of the chapter’s Scottsdale group, nominated Voices for CASA Children on Feb. 6.

Funds donated go directly to the selected organization to help it raise awareness, support its mission and achieve its goals.


PGA Birdies for Good

Southwest Section PGA professionals played 72 holes in one day and raised more than $45,000 during the SWPGA Birdies for Good event to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central and Northern Arizona and the Southwest PGA Foundation.

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central and Northern Arizona received a check for almost $23,000 during a presentation in February. The tournament was played at The Short Course at Mountain Shadows in December.

Every year, RMHC-CNAZ provides a home-away-from-home for more than 1,000 families with children needing medical attention. Since opening the first House in 1085, families have made more than 53,000 visits. RMHC-CNAZ operates three houses in the Valley with a total of 78 rooms.


The Board of Visitors Announces $1.3M in Grants

The Board of Visitors, Arizona’s oldest women’s charitable organization, has announced that 24 local nonprofit organizations received $1,330,000 in funding to help provide health-care services to women, children and the elderly. Grant applications are now being accepted for 2021. More info


2020 Grant Recipients


 Amanda Hope Rainbow Angels

 Audrey’s Angels

 Barrow Neurological Foundation

 The Board of Visitors Ryan Hous,

 Boys & Girls Club of Metro Phoenix

 Brighter Way Institute

 Catholic Charities Westside Head Start

 Central Arizona Dental Society Foundation

 Desert Voices

 Dignity Health East Valley

 Feeding Matters

 Foundation for Blind Children

 Homeless Youth Connection

 HonorHealth Foundation, Hope Community Services, Maggie’s Place, Mission of Mercy, Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation

 St. Joseph’s Foundation

 Scottsdale Training & Rehabilitation Services/STARS

 UPWARD for Children and Families

 Valleywise Health Foundation

 Wigged Out

WISP Giving Circle Announces Grants

Members of Banner Health Foundation’s giving circle known as WISP (Women Inspiring Scientific Progress), in partnership with Banner Health, awarded $120,000 to a variety of Banner Health programs in areas of health care important to women and their families. The funds represent the total raised through WISP’s 2019 member contributions and fundraising efforts. Banner leaders presented “fast pitches,” and the members decided together how to allocate the money.

2019 Grants

Banner Alzheimer’s Institute – $75,000

 T.W. Lewis Melanoma Center of Excellence – $32,100

 Center for Humane Living – $14,400

Chevy Humphrey Elected to National Board

Chevy Humphrey, Hazel A. Hare president and CEO of the Arizona Science Center and incoming chair of the American Alliance of Museums, has been elected as a new trustee to the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation.

“Chevy oversees a $12 million nonprofit with over 330 employees and volunteers, and over a half million visitors a year. And she leads an organization with whom the T.R. Library will need to partner as we move forward,” says Cathilea Robinett, chair of the Foundation. “She is a leader who is in the arena.”

Humphrey has led transformative change in museums and informal learning institutions for more than two decades. Before serving as president and CEO of the Arizona Science Center, she held leadership positions at The Phoenix Symphony, Houston Symphony, the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Houston. During her tenure at Arizona Science Center, she has earned widespread recognition for her efforts to engage and inspire individuals of all ages, earning distinctions as the first-ever recipient of the Association of Science and Technology Centers Chair’s Award for Outstanding Achievement and one of AZ Business’ Most Influential Women in Arizona Business. She prides herself on her ongoing efforts to mentor young women to realize their potential.

“For over 20 years, I have made it my mission to create immersive, enriching visitor experiences in values-based organizations that impart important lessons about our local communities, nation and the world,” Humphrey says. “I’m excited to take on the important work of creating a living library where visitors from around the world can learn from, and not just about, the life and legacy of Theodore Roosevelt.”

Humphrey is in the process of pursuing her Doctor of Business Administration at Grand Canyon University and serves on the boards of several local, statewide and national institutions that include Grand Canyon Education, the Sandra Day O’Connor Institute, College Success Arizona, Downtown Phoenix Partnership and the American Alliance of Museums.

30th Annual Hoop Dance Contest

Scott Sixkiller-Sinquah (Gila River Pima, Hopi) of Phoenix won his first adult world hoop dance title at the 30th annual World Championship Hoop Dance Contest on Feb. 8 and Feb. 9 at the Heard Museum.

Sixkiller-Sinquah faced 22 of the best hoop dancers in his division, including past champions. The 26-year-old master of hoop dancing outshone the other contestants in precision, timing, rhythm, showmanship, creativeness and speed. In total, more than 80 top American Indian and Canadian First Nation hoop dancers competed in the competition for cash prizes and the title.

The art of hoop dance honors cultural traditions from multiple Indigenous communities, reflecting the form’s roots in traditional healing ceremonies. Today, hoop dance is shared as an artistic expression to celebrate and honor Indigenous traditions throughout the U.S. and Canada.

“The Heard Museum continues to be honored to host the World Championship Hoop Dance Contest and we could not be more thrilled with the turnout for the 30th anniversary event,” says David M. Roche, Heard Museum Dickey Family Director and CEO. “This year’s competition drew in the largest number of participants in its history. We’re delighted to provide a home to the members of the hoop-dancing community.”



Concours in the Hills

The seventh annual Gila River Hotels & Casinos Concours in the Hills, a Scuderia Southwest event, raised $250,000 for Phoenix Children’s Hospital’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders. The Feb. 8 car extravaganza smashed its own goal, satisfying a five-year, $500,000 pledge in just three years.

The family-friendly show was free to the public, with donations generated by participating vehicle sponsors. It attracted 30,000 spectators, an increase of 5,000 over last year, with 118 sponsors.

Car enthusiasts from across the Southwest showcased a record 1,052 collector and exotic vehicles. The show opened with an announcement of “Drivers, start your engines” from Valley professional drivers including Derek Daly, Arie Luyendyk, Didier Theys, Lyn St. James and Harley Cluxton. An addition this year, Disney Corporation delivered a Ferrari P4 replica and a Ford GT40 replica along for display with fun champagne-popping photo booth ops. Stunt drivers from the Oscar-winning Ford v Ferrari movie also made appearances.

Peter Volny, the event’s founder, along with colleague David Crofford at Scuderia Southwest, says the active club of car aficionados is as passionate about helping kids with cancer as they are about cars. A pediatric cancer survivor, former race car driver and marketing pro, Volny says he and his wife, Linda, visited the hospital and were touched by the strength and resilience of the children they met there.

‘Riders of the Purple Sage’ Film Premiere

Riders of the Purple Sage: The Making of a Western Opera premiered Feb. 5 at Scottsdale Center for the Arts. The film is a documentary about the artistry behind Arizona Opera’s Riders of the Purple Sage. The opera marks a collaboration between the work of author Zane Grey (1872–1939), American composer Craig Bohmler and librettist Steven Mark Kohn, and Arizona’s “visual poet laureate,” painter Ed Mell. The opera is the first time Grey’s work has been adapted for the live stage.

More than 700 people attended, including the artistic team from the opera and Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane, Vice Mayor Kathy Littlefield, Councilwoman Suzanne Klapp and Councilman Guy Phillips. Prior to the screening, guests enjoyed an informal cocktail reception and took photos in front of one of the set pieces designed by fine art painter Ed Mell.

Emcee Dennis Ford, from Quantum Leap Productions, welcomed attendees, quoting Winston Churchill. “The arts are essential to any complete national life.” Marshall Trimble, Arizona’s official state historian and a trustee of Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West, title sponsor for the event, said, “Our Western heritage is important to us because we have a hunger for heroic past and the West provided that.

Billie Jo and Judd Herberger served as honorary chairs for the event. “Right from the start, Judd and I liked the energy of Riders of the Purple Sage and felt it was special because it brings together so many arts and artists. We knew it would be a significant work of art for Arizona,” said Billie Jo.

Two-time Emmy Award-winning filmmaker, director and producer Kristin Atwell Ford told the audience, “I have the honor of representing over 200 people who have made this film possible and many of you are in the audience tonight to witness what we have created together.”

Joseph Specter, president and general director of Arizona Opera, says “Riders of the Purple Sage absolutely transformed our organization and our community’s perception of our art form.”


Joseph Specter, president and general director of Arizona Opera; his wife, Kate Kinhan; conductor Joseph Mechavich; lighting designer Gregory Hirsch; stage director Fenlon Lamb; librettist Steven Mark Kohn; film director and producer Kristin Atwell Ford; composer Craig Bohmler; executive producers and honorary chairs Billie Jo and Judd Herberger; and Dennis Ford, president of Quantum Leap Productions

Cowgirls from the Cowgirl Historical Foundation with film director and producer Kristin Atwell Ford, producer Dennis Ford of Quantum Leap Productions, and opera composer Craig Bohmler

Cowgirls from the Cowgirl Historical Foundation with Joseph Specter, president and general director of Arizona Opera, and his wife, Kate Kinhan

More than 700 guests attended the premiere

Junior League of Phoenix Celebrates 85 Years

The Junior League of Phoenix is celebrating 85 years of service to the community with an $85,000 grant to Phoenix Rescue Mission, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing solutions to end hunger, homelessness, addiction and trauma. The grant will allow Phoenix Rescue Mission to expand its current food bank program with a mobile food pantry and portable kitchen units to reach families in need, aligning with JLP’s focus on “Building a Healthy Arizona.”

The JLP and Phoenix Rescue Mission have committed to expanding these services due to an increasing food insecurity epidemic in the Valley, leaving one in six Maricopa County families unsure of where or how they will receive their next meal. Since Phoenix Rescue Mission began developing these services with the acquisition of Hope for Hunger food bank in 2017, it has grown from serving 75 families per day to 180.

The mobile food pantry with two portable kitchen units will allow Phoenix Rescue Mission to better serve and feed families living in food deserts without access to grocery stores and healthy food. The mobile food pantry will visit neighborhood parks, schools, community centers, libraries and other public venues to deliver nutritionally dense foods and the kitchen units will offer nutrition and cooking classes to provide much-needed nutrition education to those in need.

Additionally, the mobile unit will give Phoenix Rescue Mission volunteers and team members the opportunity to speak with community members about the organization’s other vital services, which include shelter services, transitional housing, addiction recovery programs, workforce and vocational development training, and wellness checks.

On Feb. 9 from 9 – 11 a.m., Junior League of Phoenix will have its 85th anniversary celebration at Phoenix Rescue Mission’s Mission Possible Cafe (1516 W. Van Buren St. Phoenix) to dedicate the new mobile food pantry truck as well as showcase the past successes and the future goals of JLP to continue making a positive impact in greater Phoenix.



Halle Foundation Awards Grant to Ballet AZ

The Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation has awarded a generous grant to Ballet Arizona to support the Ballet’s flagship community engagement program, Ballet Under the Stars.

Ballet Under the Stars provides free ballet performances in four parks across the Phoenix metro area for more than 15,000 people annually. The program makes ballet easily available to underserved populations by eliminating barriers such as distance, ticket cost or the difficulty of travel due to a physical disability.

Ballet Under the Stars will take place in September 2020 and will travel to different parks around the Valley, including locales such as Tempe, Goodyear and Phoenix. The Halle grant will allow Ballet Arizona to continue providing free arts engagement to patrons across Maricopa County. The Foundation has been a generous and ongoing supporter of Ballet Arizona for many years. The organization, headed by Diane Halle, seeks to strengthen the daily opportunities and lifelong outcomes for the people and communities of Arizona.


School of Architecture at Taliesin to Close

The School of Architecture at Taliesin will cease operation at the end of the spring semester 2020. Its governing board made the decision after it failed to reach an agreement with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation to keep the school open.

The architecture school was established in 1932 by famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The school has been integral to Wright’s visionary architecture. Top architectural students from across the United States and the world have studied at the school. Previously named the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, it was renamed in 2017. Students split their time between Wright’s retreats housed at Taliesin West and Taliesin in Spring Green, Wisconsin.

The School of Architecture at Taliesin has been a pillar both in the architecture world as well as Arizona and Wisconsin, where Wright and his wife Olgivanna invited architecture students to live and work with them and immerse themselves in “organic architecture.” That immersion evolved into the architecture school whose alumni have worked on important Frank Lloyd Wright designs including Fallingwater and the Guggenheim Museum.

Approximately 30 students are currently enrolled at SOAT. The school is working out an agreement with The Design School at Arizona State University’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts so its students can transfer credit and complete their degree programs.

Sunshine Acres Children’s Home Hosts Opening

Sunshine Acres Children Home in Mesa has been home to more than 2,000 children since 1954. It provides long-term housing, support, and education programs for children who are separated from their parents. And now it has expanded to include a greenhouse to enhance its learning programs and also encourage residents to get involved and possibly discover a new hobby.

The new greenhouse opened in mid-January to the cheers of more than 40 Superstition Mountain Golf and Country Club members and was funded as part of an ongoing philanthropic initiative of the Club.

Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Unveils UNESCO Plaque

The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation hosted a private plaque unveiling at Taliesin West on Jan. 15 to commemorate the site’s official inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Taliesin West was one of eight major Frank Lloyd Wright-designed buildings inscribed on the list in July 2019 by The World Heritage Committee as The 20th-Century Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright. Wright is widely considered the greatest American architect of the 20th century and the sites in the group inscription span his influential career.

Built in 1937, Taliesin West was Wright’s beloved winter home and the bustling headquarters of the Taliesin Fellowship. It was diligently handcrafted over many years into a world unto itself. Deeply connected to the desert from which it was forged, Taliesin West possesses an almost prehistoric grandeur. It was built and maintained almost entirely by Wright and his apprentices, making it among the most personal of the architect’s creations.

Taliesin West is the first and only cultural World Heritage site in Arizona. (The Grand Canyon is a natural UNESCO site) and the collection as a whole represents the first modern architecture designation in the United States.

Stuart Graff, Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation president and CEO, and Barry Wong, executive director of Arizona’s Governor’s Office of Equal Opportunity



ASU Breaks Ground on Film School in Mesa

A partnership between Arizona State University and the city of Mesa has broken ground on ASU at Mesa City Center, a three-story state-of-the-art academic building scheduled to open in spring 2022. It will house the ASU Creative Futures Laboratory and offer programs in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts in digital and sensory technology, experiential design, gaming, media arts, film production and entrepreneurial development and support.

Of the $73.5 million budget, $63.5 million will come from the city and $10 million from ASU. ASU also will contribute a minimum of $10 million toward the interior construction and all estimated $1.3 million annual operations and maintenance costs.

ASU President Michael Crow says the project is a symbol of ASU’s commitment to improving the communities it serves. He says the facility will be equal to the digital-creativity facilities in Singapore, London, Brooklyn and Hong Kong.


Ignite Hope

On Dec. 14, One event in two locations combined holiday spirit with remembrance, inspiration and a promise to Ignite Hope for others. In addition to its Phoenix walk, the eighth annual Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation event expanded to the West Valley.

The candlelight walk in Phoenix stopped at the Phoenix Children’s Hospital main campus, where patients took in the festivities from the windows. The West Valley candlelight walk stopped at Phoenix Children’s Avondale Specialty & Urgent Care.

Between the two locations, more than 3,000 walkers gathered in a robust show of support. Many participants also engaged in fundraising efforts, yielding a record $453,000. Proceeds benefit the Hope Fund, supporting the most pressing needs for technology, research, charitable care and more.

Preludes to the walk at each location included face painting and photos with Santa. Walkers held battery-lit candles and were greeted by the CCV music team, which capped each event with familiar holiday favorites. The night concluded with the ceremonial lighting of the holiday trees.


Phoenix Symphony Announces New President, CEO

The Phoenix Symphony Board of Directors has selected performing arts industry veteran Suzanne Wilson as the organization’s new president and CEO. Wilson will succeed Jim Ward, who has led the Symphony since 2011. Ward is retiring from the position to pursue work in the private sector.

Wilson has an extensive background in both the performing arts and education—the two primary missions of The Phoenix Symphony. She previously served as executive director of the Midori Foundation, a provider of high-quality music education to New York City public school students in underserved communities. She also served as chief of staff for the New England Conservatory in Boston.

Previously, Wilson worked as director of the Office of External Affairs and Partnerships for the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, as well as vice president of Education and Community Engagement for the Celebrity Series of Boston. She completed Harvard Business School’s Executive Education Program, Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management. Wilson has a background in performing arts as a singer as well. She is a graduate of Kenyon College.

Wilson’s appointment was the result of a national search. The committee, led by Molly DeFilippis, board chair-elect, included representatives from the Board of Directors, musicians and senior staff. In addition, three community Ambassadors assisted with the interview process—Mary Jane Rynd, CEO of The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust; Dr. Steven Tepper, Dean of ASU’s Herberger Institute for Art and Design; and Neil Giuliano, CEO of Greater Phoenix Leadership. Ambassadors met individually with each of the finalists to provide their own perspective on philanthropy, higher education, the corporate landscape, collaboration and the economic impact the arts have within the Valley.


Valley MVP

Arizonan Bill Shover will receive the 2019 Legacy Recognition Award during the 2019 National Quarterback Club Awards Dinner and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Jan. 17. The event will be held at The Scottsdale Resort McCormick Ranch, beginning with a reception at 5 p.m., which will be followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. In addition, the ceremony will include honors for the National Quarterback of the Year in high school, college and professional ranks, and the inductions of Drew Bledsoe and Rich Gannon into the National Quarterback Hall of Fame.

Shover’s career at The Arizona Republic and The Phoenix Gazette spanned more than 40 years and has rendered him a legend among history makers in Arizona. Born into an Irish Catholic family in a small township outside of Indianapolis, he was the first in his family to be born in a hospital. When he was 8, he began his first job carting and selling newspapers for a nickel outside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He joined the U.S. Army at 18, and in 1946, by circumstances still a mystery to him, he was rerouted en route to Korea and landed in plush Ft. Ord in Monterey, Calif. He reported for duty and spent most of his Army career pitching for the Fort’s inter-service baseball team.

Eugene Pulliam, Nina Mason Pulliam and Bill Shover

Near the end of his military service, he realized GI benefits could lead him to a career in journalism through Butler University, which offered the platform and support he felt he could use to help people. His first writing job was at The Indianapolis Star. There, he served publisher Eugene C. Pulliam, in the first phase of a mentorship and friendship that eventually changed the course of his life.

In 1962, Pulliam asked Shover to move to Phoenix with a mandate to use the newspaper in any manner necessary to better the community as it began to grow and define itself. Shover quickly became known around town as the man to get things done.

In 1970, he helped create the Phoenix 40, consisting of 40 business leaders and politicians, to curb the risk of crime, fraud and corruption in the growing city. The group evolved into Greater Phoenix Leadership. Another winner for the community was his service toward creating the 100 Club to aid the families of public servants killed in the line of duty.

Kay and Bill Shover with Judy Shannon in May 2019 at a Salvation Army breakfast, during which Bill received the William E. Booth Award

During the ensuing decades, Shover chaired the 1976 celebrations of the Phoenix American Bicentennial Commission and led the national campaign to have the anchor retrieved from the USS Arizona and placed in the State Capital Grounds as a point of pride. He was a key figure in the effort to win two public referendum ballot initiatives to make Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday an official holiday in Arizona. He was the founder of the auction to raise money for the Combined Metropolitan Phoenix Arts and Sciences (COMPAS), which served for decades as the central funding source for many of the Valley’s cultural organizations. And just last year, he and his wife Kay chaired the 125th anniversary celebration of The Salvation Army’s service to the Valley and across the state.

Shover’s service to improving the lives of those in need and developing young talent into future leaders is paramount with Valley Leadership, Theodore Roosevelt Boy Scout Council, Arizona Project ChalleNGe, The Salvation Army, The American Red Cross, United Blood Services of Arizona, Junior Achievement, The Walter Cronkite School of Journalism at ASU, Volunteer Center of Maricopa County, Arizona Educational Foundation, Anti-Defamation League, to name a few organizations that have benefited from his involvement.

In 1987, he coordinated the historic visit of Pope John Paul II to Arizona and a multifaceted celebration bringing representatives of all religions together as one body.

The personalities of Phoenix and Arizona would not be the same without professional and collegiate sports. In 1968, Shover helped launch the Phoenix Suns and was one of nine founders of the Fiesta Bowl. He worked on the early efforts to recruit NFL football to Arizona in 1988, and brought the first Super Bowl to the Valley, chairing the Super Bowl XXX Committee in 1996.

“If you ask Bill Shover what he accomplished in his lifetime, he talks of his love of family and passing along his spirit of giving back,” says Lisa Henry Holmes, board member of National Quarterback Club Charities and lifelong Shover family friend. “Some of the greatest family times are tied to coaching his sons Kev and T.A.’s baseball teams, from little league to Legion A Baseball over 16 years, touching the lives of more than 600 boys who grew into young men,” says Henry Holmes. “While the boys might have been on the field, it was truly a family affair with daughters Sandra and Lisa managing the teams alongside Bill.”

Arizona Little League Champs

Within the six decades of accomplishment and contributions made within the State of Arizona, one of Shover’s most prideful moments is his 1966 team winning the Arizona Little League State Championship. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of this historic win, his “Boys of Summer” came together with The Salvation Army in 2016 to dedicate the Bill Shover Field of Dreams serving youth baseball, football and soccer teams at the Army’s Kroc Center.

“There is a quote attributed to Bill that is widely applied across the State of Arizona,” says Don Kile, president of the National Quarterback Club.“‘There is no limit to the good a man can do if he doesn’t care who gets the credit.’”

“At a time in our history when there is much consternation and a general lack of grace in our world, it will be a pleasure to honor one of Arizona’s truest gentlemen and one of the most dynamic and influential people responsible for forging and chiseling many of the quality of life assets all Arizonans have come to enjoy in their daily lives,” Kile says.

For more information about the awards dinner, CLICK HERE

19th Annual Walk to Defeat ALS

The ALS Association Arizona Chapter raised $470,000 on Nov. 2 at the 19th annual Walk to Defeat ALS. The event, which helped raise money and awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, was one of the largest to date. This year, the event moved to Salt River Fields and accommodated 4,000 people in attendance.

Participants could walk either a 3K or a half-mile fun course to raise funds for the association. The money goes toward education, support groups, access to care, advocacy and finding a cure for the currently fatal disease. The Arizona Cardinals cheer squad helped pump up walkers with dance moves while the Arizona Coyotes sent Howler and his street team to meet the families making a difference for the community.

Steele Foundation Donates $250K to Free Arts

The Steele Foundation has donated $250,000 to Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona for its Building Hope Capital Purchase and Renovation Campaign. Free Arts plans to transform the nondescript office building at 352 E. Camelback Road to a modern center for art. The new art room will be named after The Steele Foundation. Studio Ma Architectural & Environment Design will design and oversee the renovatation.

The new center will allow Free Arts to expand programs to serve thousands of additional children and families. The organization will explore and establish best practices for using the arts and mentoring with children who have experienced trauma. The center also will showcase artwork and stories that foster a deeper understanding of children who have experienced the trauma of abuse or homelessness. Free Arts projects that more than 66,000 people will use the renovated building over a 10-year period.

Additionally, the building will allow for program, staff and volunteer growth. It will create a hub where the people and organizations that constitute the child well-being community can come together for learning, knowledge-sharing, creating and program delivery. The new building is set to be complete by February 2020.


Electric Desert Generates $50M Impact

Last year, Desert Botanical Garden dazzled 192,000 visitors with Electric Desert | A light and Sound Experience by Klip Collective. Attracted to the allure of lights intricately choreographed onto desert plants to the rhythms of original music, Electric Desert visitors traveled from far and wide to the Phoenix metropolitan area, generating a $50 million impact on the local economy. The Garden captured Electric Desert’s Economic Contribution report, which outlines visitors’ spending on airfare, hotels, dining, other attractions gasoline and more. According to the report, 42 percent of visitors to Electric Desert were from outside the Phoenix metropolitan area, and 11 percent were international visitors. Of these tourists, 74 percent said Electric Desert was the primary reason for their visit to the Valley.


Autism Speaks Walk

On Oct. 27, 10,000 people and 500 teams from across the state gathered at Tempe Beach Park in support of the Autism Speaks Walk in partnership with Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC). The annual event raised an estimated $600,000, half of which will go to the national initiatives led by Autism Speaks. The other half will go to support local families through SARRC’s innovative research and programs.

In addition to a one-mile family-friendly walk and 5k, a resource fair featuring 20 vendors provided resources to walkers.

Cheers to the Chef

Local food hero Vincent Guerithault, award-winning chef and owner of Vincent on Camelback, celebrated 50 years of creating culinary sensations with a special “Toast and Roast” dinner event Oct. 11—which also happened to be his birthday.

Guerithault is known for combining classic French cooking with Southwestern ingredients, creating an entirely new cuisine. He has received numerous awards, among them the James Beard award as “America’s Best Chef Southwest.”

The roster of celebrity roasters for the dinner included former Senator Jon Kyl, businessman and sports executive Jerry Colangelo, Dr. Robert Spetzler, restaurateur Mark Tarbell, former Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, and author and businessman Harvey Mackay. Barbara Fenzl, also an award-winning chef and retired owner of Les Gourmettes Cooking School, was unable to attend, but gave her greetings and congratulations via video.

The 80 guests at the dinner enjoyed signature dishes from Vincent’s 50-year career.


Billy Harfosh and Ania Ostrowicka; Terry Goddard and Chef Vincent Guerithault

Caryll and Jon Kyl; Gerald and Françoise Lorch 

Leevon and Vincent Guerithault with Karen and Bob Hobbs

Nancy and Jimmy Walker; Ed and Karrin Robson

Niki and Mark Tarbell

Garcia Family Foundation Makes Gift to Human Services Campus

The Garcia Family Foundation has made a $10 million multi-year gift to Human Services Campus. The goal is to build on the vision and mission of the agency, which manages a multi-use campus where 15 independent nonprofit agencies collaborate to address the needs of individuals experiencing homelessness.

“The Human Services Campus is a national model of excellence in providing services, resources and hope for men and women experiencing homelessness,” says Jon Ehlinger, Garcia Family Foundation president.

“The collective efforts of this collaboration have proven effective in identifying and developing solutions to a very difficult challenge. Through this gift we want to provide both a solid financial foundation to continue and enhance that important work and to challenge the broader community to engage in the effort by leveraging the gift with additional support to fund and fulfill these critical needs.”

During the past year, more than 6,600 individuals have been served and connected with services on the Human Services Campus, a process that begins with individual assessments at the Brian Garcia Welcome Center to identify barriers and develop individual strategies to move men and women into permanent housing. The Brian Garcia Welcome Center is named in honor of the son of Garcia Family Foundation founders Joanne and Ernie Garcia.

Among the investments targeted for the gift is formalizing an operational partnership with Arizona State University’s Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions to address homelessness.

The gift supports the new Watts College Nexus, a team dedicated to coordinating and aligning systems, building capacity and co-creating solutions with service providers for preventing and ending homelessness in the region.

Founded in 1996, the Garcia Family Foundation is committed to serving and solving the challenges of those living in poverty in Arizona.


Run Raises Money for Phoenix Children’s Hospital

Walk. Run. Fundraise. for Phoenix Children’s Hospital patients on Oct. 5 raised $175,000 for patient care. Two thousand participants joined the family-friendly 3.1-mile walk/run, with proceeds benefiting the Hope Fund, which supports more than 60 of the programs and services funded solely or significantly through philanthropy.

The event began with festivities at First Avenue and Washington Street in downtown Phoenix, where participants could warm up to music provided by iHeartRadio, visit sponsor booths for free giveaways and join in multiple team photo opportunities. The Joint Chiropractic Kids’ Dash ended the morning, with all participating kids receiving a commemorative finisher’s medal.

It was a special moment for all when 16-year-old patient Porter Trythall took his first steps since being diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumor in 2018, leaving him unable to speak, swallow, move or smile. After extensive rehabilitation therapy at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, Porter independently walked at the start and the finish line for patients like himself.

Racers had the opportunity to raise additional funds for Phoenix Children’s by creating a fundraising team or raising funds as individuals. Sponsors included RSM, The Joint Chiropractic, KNIX and Capilano Properties.


8th Annual Mayor’s Arts Awards

Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego and Phoenix Center for the Arts held the Eighth Annual Mayor’s Arts Awards on Oct. 10 in the Margaret T. Hance Park Urban Plaza. The event celebrated the spectrum and quality of artistic talent in the city. Funds raised help sustain for Phoenix Center for the Arts’ free programming, financial aid and scholarship programs throughout the year.

The winners received one-of-a-kind pieces of art created by the instructors at Phoenix Center for the Arts.

Mayor Kate Gallego and Ruchi Ukhade

2019 Mayor’s Arts Awards Winners

Dance Artist Award – Susan Bendix

Literary Artist Award – Joel Salcido

Jerry Lawson Memorial Music Artist Award – Downtown Chamber Series

Theatre Artist Award – Bobb Cooper

Dr. Eugene Grigsby Visual Artist Award – Maggie Keane

Young Artist Award – Ruchi Ukhade

Innovative Arts Organization Award – Girls Rock! Phoenix

DIY/Maker Award – Tina Ferguson

Lou & Evelyn Grubb Community Innovator Award – RJ Muller

Thunderbirds Name New Executive Director

Chance Cozby will assume the role of executive director for The Thunderbirds on Nov. 1, and officially replace John Bridger, current executive director, in spring 2020.

A member of The Thunderbirds since 2010, Cozby was the tournament chairman for the 2019 Waste Management Phoenix Open and is currently Big Chief of The Thunderbirds and president of Thunderbirds Charities. He has been on staff at PING since 1999 and will remain with PING as vice president of sports development through Oct. 31. The transition will occur over a number of months including the 2020 Waste Management Phoenix Open. Cozby will continue to serve out his term as the Big Chief of The Thunderbirds through May 2020.

Cozby received a B.B.A. degree from the University of Oklahoma in 1999, where he earned all-conference honors for three years as a member of the Sooners golf team. His family has a deep background in golf—his brothers Cary and Craig also played golf at Oklahoma, and his dad Jerry is a member of the PGA Hall of Fame and was the 1985 PGA Professional of the Year. A Thunderbird since 2010, Cozby lives in Phoenix with his wife Erica and their two sons, Campbell and Catcher.

John Bridger

Bridger has been a Thunderbird since 1991 and is in his 18th year as executive director, overseeing the administration, programs and strategic plan of The Thunderbirds and the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Other key duties include providing counsel on fundraising, marketing, leadership and community outreach.

“I’ll have big shoes to fill, there is no doubt about that. John Bridger is a trusted leader that has provided a personal touch from this position for the better part of two decades,” Cozby says. “His legacy is rooted in giving back to our community and we should all give thanks for his 18-year career of making a difference in the lives of so many.”

The 2020 Waste Management Phoenix Open Presented by The Ak-Chin Indian Community will be held at TPC Scottsdale January 27 – February 2, 2020.


‘Toast and Roast’ Scheduled for Vincent Guerithault

Local food hero Vincent Guerithault, award-winning chef and owner of Vincent on Camelback, celebrates his 50-year milestone of creating culinary sensations with a special “Toast and Roast” dinner event on October 11. The event will be held at the restaurant on Camelback Road in Phoenix.

Guerithault is known for combining classic French cooking with Southwestern ingredients, creating an entirely new cuisine. He has received numerous awards, among them the James Beard award as “America’s Best Chef: Southwest.”

The roster of celebrity roasters for the celebratory dinner includes former Senator Jon Kyl, businessman and sports executive Jerry Colangelo, Dr. Robert Spetzler, restaurateur Mark Tarbell, former Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, and author and businessman Harvey Mackay, among others.

The menu will feature signature dishes from Vincent’s 50-year career. The event is open to the public. Visit vincentsoncamelback.com for more information.

Thunderbirds Donates Record $1M to Special Olympics

Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable giving arm of The Thunderbirds, announced a record-breaking donation of $1 million to Special Olympics Arizona. The donation is the largest single gift handed out by Thunderbirds Charities since its inception in 1937, and the gift will help support the building of a new Special Olympics Arizona state office and distribution center adjacent to Perryville Prison in Goodyear.

“This gift is only possible through the incredible support we receive from our corporate partners and from the best fans in golf who attend the WM Phoenix Open each year. We’re honored and humbled to have such a strong giving presence in the Valley,” says Chance Cozby, 2019 WM Phoenix Open Tournament chairman

The new facility, which will be led by JE Dunn Construction, will provide statewide support for programs and events that are not just for Special Olympic athletes and personnel, but also for the community and sporting events that focus on inclusion. It will provide a center for distribution services, uniform production, equipment and an efficient facility for youth and inclusive sports in Arizona.

The Arizona Department of Corrections is proud of its partnership with Special Olympics Arizona, and we are excited to host its new distribution center on the grounds of the Perryville Compex,” says Charles Ryan, ADC director. “It will create additional skill development and employment opportunities for our inmates and enable us to support the organization’s important and growing efforts to provide inclusive community programs and events throughout the state for years to come.”

The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.

Lowell Debuts Open Deck Observatory

The Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff was established in 1894 by wealthy Bostonian Percival Lowell. Through the years, the Observatory has been home to many discoveries, including the first detection of the expanding nature of the universe, the discovery of Pluto, moon mapping for the Apollo program to the moon, the rings of Uranus, atmosphere of Pluto and more.

In 2014, it opened the Putnam Collection Center, which will ultimately house the Observatory’s vast collection of documents and artifacts.

On October 5, a new observation deck will debut. The Giovale Open Deck Observatory features six sophisticated telescopes dedicated to public observing and outreach. It will also have interactive exhibits that will leave visitors feeling more connected to the night sky and all the wonders it holds. The facility is named in honor of longtime Lowell supporters/advisors Ginger and John Giovale, who made a lead gift for the project.

The Observatory is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, visit lowell.edu.

Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Reimagined

Set to debut in early 2020, the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown, Arizona’s largest hotel, is being reimagined under Marriott International’s ownership. The company has committed to making Phoenix the launching pad for the new Sheraton experience, rooted in its community-forward ethos. The design approach embraces community-fluid spaces that feel warm and inviting for both locals and visitors.

In May, Sheraton Phoenix Downtown launched its multiphase transformation, featuring a complete renovation of the guest rooms followed by a re-design of the lobby, public spaces and dining outlets.

Larry Fitzgerald Celebrates 11 Years of Raising Funds

Eleven has been a lucky number for Larry Fitzgerald. It is the number he has worn for 15 seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, last year he was selected to his 11th Pro Bowl and on Aug. 26, Fitzgerald’s First Down Fund celebrated 11 years when Fitz’s Supper Club returned to Dominick’s Steakhouse.

That night, Fitzgerald was joined by celebrity friends Frank Caliendo—who served as the entertainment for the evening—Christian Kirk, Chase Edmonds, Terrell Suggs, Seth Joyner, Kliff Kingsbury and others for an evening of fun and fine dining. Guests enjoyed the best service in town at Dominick’s Steakhouse., The evening was designed to raise funds to support Fitzgerald’s First Down Fund.

Guests at the event enjoyed an array of Fitzgerald’s post-game favorites prepared by Chef Marc Lupino, cocktails and silent and live auctions.

The Larry Fitzgerald First Down Fund has been supporting kids and their families with donations of time, money and special resources through numerous associations across the country and beyond. The First Down Fund promotes reading proficiency and technology access for K-12 youth as cornerstones to success at school and in life. It also supports efforts to prevent and cure breast cancer and support breast cancer survivors.


David and Meghan Johnson Unveil 4th Locker

David and Meghan Johnson, founders of The Johnson Family’s Mission 31 Foundation, unveiled their fourth David’s Locker at Ryan House on Sept. 10. The mobile locker contains noise-canceling headphones, Apple iPads, Nintendo Switches and video games.

David’s Locker provides students and chronically ill children and their family members access to electronics, serving as a source of entertainment, a tool for education and a portal for communication.

Meghan and David Johnson

The Johnsons unveiled the first David’s Locker at Phoenix Children’s Hospital in April 2018. It was designed to be mobile in order to fit the hospital’s needs for technology on an isolation floor.

The second David’s Locker was presented to Cardon Children’s Medical Center in September 2018. It serves a variety of needs for many children as the hospital sees children from birth to age 18.

Ralph Waldo Emerson Elementary School’s Special Needs Program received their David’s Locker in April 2019. It will provide students with a safe space to use technology to enhance their overall education experience.

Founded in October 2017, the Johnson Family’s Mission 31 Foundation is the personal charity of Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson and his wife, Meghan. The mission of The Johnson Family’s Mission 31 Foundation is to provide opportunities, support and resources to seriously ill children and their families by offering daily support and life-changing experiences.

Young guest with David Johnson


Xico Hosts Cultural Exchange Art Show

During September’s First Friday event on Sept. 6, Xico hosted Intercambio Cultural/Cultural Exchange at its Xico Galeria. The well attended event exhibited diverse works of art by Alma Primero, Edgar Fernandez, Edith Castro, Elisa Casanova, Fausto Fernandez, Isaac Torres, Julio Gallegos, Manny Burruel, Martin Moreno, Melanie Croskey, Monica Gisel, Oliverio Balcells, Patricia Moreno, Paula Cullison, Rachel Srinivasan, Renee Dennison, Rigo Flores, Robert Booker, Rodolfo Marron III, Sophia del Rio, Stephanie Gonzalez, and Xhiv Bogart.

The exhibition will be open by appointment Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. until the closing reception on Oct. 17 at 6 p.m.


Martin Moreno and Marcelino Quinonez

Edith Castro

Bob Booker and Ed Lebow

Stephanie Gonzales art

Philanthropist Dedicates $5M to Health-Care Education

Following a longstanding family tradition of investing in health care and health-sciences education benefiting the Phoenix community, local philanthropist Doris Norton has donated $5 million to Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center and Creighton University. The gift will expand much-needed health-sciences education in Phoenix, creating a pipeline of physicians, nurses and other health-care professionals at a time when the Valley, state and nation are facing an imminent shortage of health-care professionals.

“I’m delighted to support this expanding partnership between St. Joseph’s and Creighton University,” Norton says. “We’ve always believed St. Joseph’s is the leading hospital in the Valley. Knowing that Creighton mirrors the same commitment to educating outstanding health-care professionals makes this the perfect union.”

Norton’s gift designates $3 million to support development of a new Creighton University Health Sciences – Phoenix Campus adjacent to St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in midtown Phoenix. Phase one of the project—a 180,000-square-foot building with capacity for more than 800 students—is currently under construction at Park Central Mall. It is expected to be completed in spring 2021. Norton has allocated $2 million toward St. Joseph’s endowment scholarships for students entering the nursing field, reflecting a commitment to health-care education that she has supported during her family’s decades-long relationship with St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center.

Creighton’s Phoenix campus will enroll students in nursing, pharmacy, physical and occupational therapy, and physician-assistant programs, as well as students in a four-year medical program. The new campus further strengthens a longstanding partnership between St. Joseph’s and Omaha-based Creighton established in 2005, when Creighton medical students began month-long rotations at the Phoenix hospital. That relationship expanded in 2009 when Creighton and St. Joseph’s established the Phoenix Regional Campus for third- and fourth-year medical students. In 2018, St. Joseph’s welcomed the inaugural cohort of students in Creighton’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program, putting students who hold undergraduate degrees on a 12-month trajectory to a new nursing career.

The $5 million gift underscores the passion and commitment to Arizona, St. Joseph’s and education shared by Doris and her husband, John, who died in 2016. John was born at the hospital, as were the couple’s three children. Together, John and Doris generously funded campus renovations to support the initial partnership between St. Joseph’s and Creighton University School of Medicine, and they established the Doris Norton Scholars program to endow scholarships for Creighton medical students.

The late John Norton and Doris Norton with Creighton scholars

In 2014, the Nortons made a transformational gift to St. Joseph’s in the amount of $19 million—the largest donation in Arizona history at that time—to establish the John and Doris Norton Cardiothoracic and Transplantation Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center. Three years later, the Institute’s lung transplant program soared to No. 1 in the nation, recognized for saving more lives than any other facility in the country while still maintaining the highest quality outcomes and shortest wait times.

Recently, Creighton University, Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Valleywise Health (formerly Maricopa Integrated Health System) and District Medical Group entered into a strategic partnership known as the Creighton University Arizona Health Education Alliance. The partnership’s goal—to strengthen and expand graduate medical education programming to new generations of physicians, nurses and allied health professionals—will improve the health outcomes for the community, state and nation. Arizona currently ranks in the bottom third of all states in the number of residents and practicing physicians per 100,000 people. This alliance aims to attract health-care students to undergo expertise training, degrees and careers in Phoenix for the benefit of patients throughout Arizona.



Contributions Fund Phoenix Children’s Expansion

Some of the Valley’s most philanthropic groups donated a combined $1.55 million to fund the expansion of the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, which recently opened.

Thunderbirds Charities, the charitable wing of the hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open, The Thunderbirds, donated $400,000 to fund the expansion of the CVICU. Thunderbirds Charities is a longtime supporter of Phoenix Children’s Hospital and also has donated to causes such as the hospital’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders and the Emergency Department and Level 1 Trauma Center.

Scottsdale Active 20/30 Club granted Phoenix Children’s Hospital $400,000 toward the funding of the CVICU. Scottsdale Active 20/30 Club chose CVICU for this donation due to its ongoing commitment to bettering the lives of children in Phoenix.

Freeport-McMoRan Foundation donated $300,000 to expand pediatric heart care at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. The organization has a long history of giving back to the communities in which they operate, including support of the Hospital’s Emergency Department and Level 1 Trauma Center in 2017.

Beach Ball Paddle Raising: At this year’s annual Beach Ball gala, attendees were asked to raise their paddles for the expansion of the Phoenix Children’s Hospital CVICU. Guests generously gave a total of $450,000 towards the expansion.

The CVICU has seen an increased demand in care over the last several years. One in 100 infants born today has a congenital heart defect. The Heart Center at Phoenix Children’s is the only Center of its kind in the Southwest, and is becoming an international destination for expert care. The donations will fund an increased number of beds, cutting-edge technology and a more robust continuum of care.

PCHF Leadership Circle Awards Physician Grants

The Leadership Circle of the Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation held its 15th annual Grant Finalist Luncheon at the Paradise Valley Country Club in late April. Carey Peña served as emcee. Six physicians presented their requests for grants to benefit innovative research and lifesaving programs at the hospital. Leadership Circle members then ranked where they wanted their donations to go. Approximately $475,000 was awarded to the winning grant finalists in May. Leadership Circle Membership is unique in that members direct where their donation dollars are spent.

The Leadership Circle Grant Cycle is now open to all Phoenix Children’s clinical, program and research staff. applications are due by Sept. 6, 2019. For more information, click here. For information on Leadership Circle membership, click here.

New Executive Director at Arizona Citizens for the Arts

Joseph Benesh, director of Phoenix Center for the Arts since 2011, has assumed the role of executive director of Arizona Citizens for the Arts, the nonprofit statewide arts advocacy organization. He replaced Catherine “Rusty” Foley, who announced her retirement in February. Benesh, and began his new position July 1.

During his tenure at Phoenix Center for the Arts, Benesh led the growth of the organization from a budget of $200,000 to one of almost $2 million, creating a range of programs including Phoenix Festival of the Arts, Mayor’s Arts Awards, Beta Dance Festival, V-Week, the Arizona Art Mobile and the now 3-year-old Thunderbird Arts Center.

The programs he helped create, in partnership with artists, benefit more than 38,000 people each year. He oversaw a 16-member staff and more than 100 teaching artists.

Benesh is currently a member of the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, a Phoenix Arts and Culture commissioner and a member of the Hance Park Conservancy. He has served as a team leader for the annual AzCA-organized Arts Congress, program day chair for Valley Leadership and as a member of the steering committee for the ASU Program in Arts Entrepreneurship. He also was a member of the Mayor’s Solutions Council on Youth Opportunity and a grant panelist for the Arizona Commission on the Arts.

Professionally, he had been theater manager at the Manhattan Movement and Arts Center in New York City, group sales manager at The Phoenix Theatre Company and business development manager for Theater Works. Additionally, he served as artistic director at Stagebrush Theatre and taught acting classes as an adjunct professor at Estrella Mountain Community College, creating a showcase of student performances each semester.

Benesh holds a Master of the Arts from the New York University Steinhardt School and a Bachelor of Arts from Arizona State University.

Board of Visitors Announces Flower Girls

The Board of Visitors has selected 45 high school seniors as Flower Girls for the 105th Annual Charity Ball. The young women will participate in events throughout the year, including the Annual Fashion Show Luncheon on Dec. 14 at the JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort and Spa and a philanthropic event in spring 2020 at The Board of Visitors Ryan House. They will be presented by their fathers at The Board of Visitors 105th Annual Charity Ball on April 4, 2020, at the JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort and Spa.


Enelia Bidwill
Mira Camunez
Allison Chester
Maria Cisneros-Luebke
Kendall Coupland
Ellen Dannerbeck
Julienne DeSanto
Lauren Dickey
Sophie Dubé
Macy Garlick
Katherine Getz
Marilyn Ghazoul
Charlotte Gillem
Cristina Glascock
Grace Haak,
Melissa Hannay
Ashleigh Heitel
Abby Hendricks
Caroline Hink
Haley Hubbard
Kyra Klonoski
Anne Langmade
Maeve Lomax
Katherine Longo
Lauren Louer
Mason Mahoney
Olivia McGinley
Grace McGovern
Averi Miller
Kirsten Peterson
Annelise Prusak
Natalie Rink
Mia Scardello
Elizabeth Shannon
Tait Thompson
Alison Thorpe
Eden Tornquist
Quinn Voorhees
Madeline Walker
Elizabeth Warren
Julianna Westfall
Caroline Wichterman
Josephina Wright
Madeleine Wright
Megan Zacher

Devereux Cuts Ribbon on New Dorm

Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health Arizona held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the grand opening of its residential treatment center’s new Marley Dormitory on July 10. Almost 50 people attended the morning festivity before receiving a tour of the new dorm, which expands the 48-bed facility to accommodate up to 52 youth.

The Scottsdale-based treatment center is located on a 10-acre campus where youth between the ages of 5 and 17 years live and attend school while receiving treatment for emotional, mental, behavioral and/or substance-abuse challenges. It is Arizona’s only facility that provides youth under the age of 12 with specialized programming in a safe, therapeutic environment in which to heal.

Devereux Arizona began a therapeutic day school in 1967. The residential treatment center was established in 1978 as a 32-bed center. With increasing demand, Devereux then added two modular dorms to meet the growing needs of the community, allowing 24-hour care to a total of 48 youth on campus.

The 5,000 square-foot dormitory was part of a $1.25 million capital campaign. Devereux broke ground on the project in April 2018.


Act One Hits Milestone

At a Phoenix Symphony field trip on May 16, Act One celebrated Elias and his kindergarten schoolmates from Brunson-Lee Elementary School in the Balsz School District. Elias was the 200,000th participant on an Act One field trip. The students were honored before the 10 a.m. Phoenix Symphony field trip in a ceremony celebrating the milestone for Act One. The organization has been providing field trips to performances and museums for students from Title 1 schools since 2011.

Elias, the 200,000th field trip participant

Elias spoke with Act One founder Mac Perlich, answering questions about his expectations for the field trip. His classmates pitched in to help with some answers. Elias grinned from ear to ear when Perlich placed a red cape on him to celebrate the field trip-s theme, “Be Your Own Hero,” and presented him with a certificate and book about the orchestra.

According to Brunson-Lee kindergarten teacher Kat Araiza, the students prepared for the field trip by listening to orchestra music, watching videos, learning about tempo and talking about the instruments. “… in my classroom, my students enthusiastically responded to the conductor. They even grabbed their pencils and vigorously waved them around as they watched the conductor in the video,” she says.

After the field trip, all the students were given capes, provided by Act One, to “Be Their Own Heroes.” The kindergarten classrooms were also given books about music and the orchestra, courtesy Changing Hands Bookstore and the Literary and Prologues Society of the Southwest.

“Every student deserves high-quality arts experiences outside the classroom regardless of what neighborhood they grow up in,” Araiza told the crowd gathered for the 200,000th celebration. “Exposure to new ideas opens pathways for learning that were previously unknown. The arts stimulate our senses . . . I know after today, [my students’] creativity will continue to soar, and they can share that heightened inspiration with their own communities.”


SYMPHNY Features Space-Themed Music

On May 24, the Phoenix Symphony under the baton of Virginia G. Piper Music Director Tito Muñoz joined forces with the team at True North Studio to transform the MonOrchid, a historic Roosevelt Row warehouse, into a satellite concert hall for the premiere of the SYMPHNY series. The sold-out audience of 200, along with more than 70 musicians, packed the venue.

As patrons arrived, they enjoyed a Phoenix Symphony string quartet, cocktails, photo booth and the artwork of Antoinette Cauley displayed in the gallery space. Muñoz constructed a dichotomy featuring the composer pair of Gustav Holst and John Williams. The program was naturally filled space-themed works, such as movements of Holsts’ The Planets and iconic works from Star Wars, more powerful than ever in the intimate space.

After the performance, guests were encouraged to stay and mingle with Phoenix Symphony musicians.


Guests mingle and enjoy the gallery before the performance

Jonathon Vento, principal developer of True North Studios

Phoenix Symphony musicians warm up


Man & Woman of the Year

Valley Leadership hosted its 70th annual Man & Woman of the Year event on March 29 at the JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn. This year’s event honored Colleen Jennings-Roggensack, executive director at ASU Gammage, and John Graham, chairman and CEO at Sunbelt Holdings. Both spoke at the luncheon. In addition, Valley Leadership CEO Dave Brown updated the audience on the organization’s future goals.

Valley Leadership provides training for future Arizona leaders.


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