Countdown to Graduation

By CHRIS IRISH
Scottsdale Leadership Executive Director

This is the time of year that I always get a little melancholy.  Class 24 graduates tonight! I know I’ll miss the time we spend together on Scottsdale Leadership Fridays.  I have thoroughly enjoyed learning alongside them, gaining an understanding of their perspectives and seeing the “lights come on” when a topic or cause ignites their interest.  It’s been rewarding for me to be part of the journey that has helped them identify how they can best give back to the community.

So yes, I’m sad; but I’m also proud.  The members of ‘Class 24 – 24 Karat Gold’ have made good use of the last nine months.  They connected with the theory of “the cycle of poverty”.  They debated the effectiveness of the AIMS test.  They discussed how personal responsibility must be part of healthcare. They relished the opportunity to talk one-on-one with elected officials and slowly digested the personal sacrifices it takes to be a true community steward.

On Public Safety Day, Class 24 literally put out a fire.  On Quality of Life Day they hiked the preserve.  And perhaps most impressive, Class 24 planned and implemented six community service projects that will benefit thousands.

Funny, I’m not feeling sad anymore!  Scottsdale Leadership Class 24 is a success story that is going to get more interesting as time progresses. I look forward to each and every class member increasing their impact on the community by taking the lead… they are ready, willing and able!

Congratulation to the newest graduates of Scottsdale Leadership!

Zack Barna, GuideLight Marketing
Marc Blonstein, Berens, Kozub & Kloberdanz, PLC
Deanne Boynton Grupp, Scottsdale CVB
Jacky Burke, Body Definitions
Johnny Cervantes, Scottsdale Police Department
Jennifer Clark, DC Ranch Community Council
Kevin Classen, FirstBank of Arizona
Ted Collins, retired
Nicole Corning, MetLife Home Loans
Kathy Coster, Scottsdale Public Library
Chauna Cox
Stacey D’Abate, Henkel Consumer Goods, Inc.
John Damiris, UMB Bank Arizona
Dr. Mia Darling
Patrick Eichen, U of A – Eller College of Mgmt.
Michelle Evard, Evard Financial Advisors, PLLC
Suzette Gibson, SRP
Kathleen Glenn, TBA Global
Mary Holman, Enterprise Bank and Trust
Jeff Jameson, Jameson Associates
Branch Johnson, Vault Financial, LLC
Sona Koltookian, Monster.com
Joe Laux, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network
Ken Levine, Scottsdale Insurance Company
Laurie McCammon, self-employed piano teacher
Sylvia McDowell, RE/MAX Fine Properties
Brent Mekosh, Mekosh Financial Services of Raymond James
David Nelson, Scottsdale Insurance Company
Juliana Norvell, Arizona Capitol Times
Suzanne Paetzer, TriAra Consulting, LLC,
Jose Penalosa, Jr., Penalosa & Associates, P.C.
Paige Perry, Mayo Clinic
Jay Pizarro, Foodies Like Us
Charles Popeck, Green Ideas
Sheri Rayes, Arizona Dept. of Economic Security
Bridget Schwartz-Manock, Central Arizona Project
Mike Seiden, retired president of Western International University
Elizabeth Teitel, Gebert Contemporary Art Gallery
David Valencia, EJM Development Co.
Craig Whitten, UBS Financial Services
Julius Williams, retired
John Zicarelli, CAME, LLC

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1 Comment

Filed under Alumni, Class

One response to “Countdown to Graduation

  1. Dear 24 Karat Gold,

    Congratulations on your achievement! I’m so sorry that I missed Sustainability Day, but understand that my good friend and your classmate, Charlie Popeck stepped up and explained to you, without too many technicalities, my business and the important role we play in our built environment.
    To me, what was most important, is that my company, Salt River Materials Group sponsored Class Day, which helps to move the program forward.
    As incoming new board member and Vice Chair of the Resource Development Committee, I along with Susie Timms, will be reaching out to you all asking for your support in the coming months and year.

    Have a great summer!

    Scott Palmer

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