Category Archives: Events

Our Time to Lead

Hafer_Kevin (2)By Kevin Hafer
Henkel Consumer Goods, Inc.

After nearly 9 months of learning about the issues facing Scottsdale and about the amazing organizations that work everyday to make a positive impact on the community, on April 15th, it was time for Class 30 to present the results of the hard work the 4 teams put into their Lead it Forward projects.

Over the 5 months since our project teams were formed, the four Lead it Forward teams have dedicated thousands of volunteer hours into executing our team projects and the results of that hard work were on full display at the Lead it Forward showcase.

Here are some highlights from the four Lead it Forward project teams:

WildAbtWildlife-36Team WildThings – Partnered with Liberty Wildlife to throw the Wild about Wildlife Fun Fair, with the goal of increasing their community education outreach, increase donations, and increase volunteer opportunities for Liberty Wildlife as they get ready to move into a new facility later this year.  The results speak for themselves – the event attendance was up 10-fold over last year, generated over $20k in donations, and they set the stakeholder up for success in the future by creating a playbook for making it even a bigger success next year.  The judges also agreed as they selected this project as the winning project for Class 30 Lead it Forward.

IMG_8540Painting with the STARS –This team partnered with STARS (Scottsdale Training and Rehabilitation Services) to create an art show fundraiser to help drive exposure and donations to support the STARS “Drawn Together” arts program.   As part of the art show, art work that was created by STARS Drawn Together participants was auctioned off and a community art piece was created.  The event was a huge success with over $11k in donations(which will allow them to add ceramics to the curriculum and upgrade their photography equipment), had over 200 attendees, and reached over15,000 people with the STARS message.

GiGi's Go GettersGiGi’s Go Getters – This team partnered with GiGi’s Playhouse, which is an achievement center for individuals with Down syndrome to help increase literacy, math skills, and motor skills.  This project team worked to create an outreach and networking event called “Passport to the Playhouse”, with the goal of spreading awareness of GiGi’s in the broader community, but also to help create a network among their partner organizations from across the valley.  More than 20 organizations attended the event, and they definitely got the word out as they reached over 7,000 potential clients with the GiGi’s Playhouse message, had over 110,000 touches with #GenerationG hashtag, and earned 2 media spots on Channel 3 news and 250+ shares on Facebook

Team BeyondTeam Beyond – This team partnered with an organization called Beyond Autism to help create a new campus for their students.  Beyond Autism is a school for children that are experiencing autism, and focuses not only on teaching academics, but also sometimes overlooked critical social and life skills.  Team Beyond worked to secure over $50k in donations and volunteered over 2,000 hours to transform the run-down yard of their new campus into a safe, soothing, and fun space for the students of Beyond-Autism to swing, play, swim, garden, and learn life skills.

Two members of the class have committed to becoming board members at their Lead it Forward partner organization, others have committed to helping their events next year, and a team has signed on to help with the next phase of their stakeholder’s project because they were so impacted by the mission of the organizations.

Since one of the key benefits and goals of Scottsdale Leadership is to help it’s participants to find their passion and get involved, the ongoing commitment demonstrated by the members of Class 30 is a reflection of the success of the Scottsdale Leadership program and specifically, the Lead it Forward project.

As our classmate JheniferShipe said on the night of the Lead it Forward event, “While this was competition, we are all the true winners because we got to partner with these incredible organizations to make a true and lasting positive impact on the community”.  I couldn’t say it better myself and have heard the same sentiments from many of my classmates.  Knowing that we have given our all in the service of others is an amazing feeling and is just the start of the impact that Class 30 will make on the community in the future, because, quite simply… Class 30 Rocks!

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Serving Others in Need is Noble and Courageous

RodneyHeadShotBy Rodney Smith, Class 28
First Financial Equity Corporation
Founder, Helping Hands for Freedom

Class 28 Blog: This is a blog series about the experience and impact of Scottsdale Leadership’s Core Program. The views expressed here represent those of class members and not those of Scottsdale Leadership

As someone who has spent 24 years in the non-profit industry – as a founder of three organizations and a consultant for more than 20 others – what I heard and saw at Scottsdale Leadership’s “Lead it Forward” competition on April 4th was simply amazing.

I am a firm believer the strong survive and prosper in life, and I am not talking about how much money you make. Whether that is strength in character and integrity, a commitment to family, friends and community, or having respect for yourself and your way of life, to find peace and fulfillment is often a matter of one’s heart and soul and not measured with your bank account.

To serve others when others need help is one of the most noble and courageous things a person can do with their life. To see the impact that 44 Class 28 members made on five Valley charities was breathtaking. The projects featured sustainable solutions, addressed immediate concerns and needs, generated donations, provided introductions and connections that were not there before, and were filled with passion and a skill set that charities are always looking for to serve on their committees and boards.

As someone who benefited from others who took an active interest in my life when I was a child, I was touched, moved, and inspired by the dedication and hard work that went into the projects and what a powerful impact everyone had for their charity of choice.

Some simple truths learned that day:
1. Volunteering can make a difference.
2. Professional expertise can catapult a charity to higher levels.
3. Connections and relationships with other like-minded individuals is a powerful combination.

“Lead It Forward” Projects included:

Tavan Digital Literacy Program, which held a technology fair at Tavan Elementary School, showed children, their parents and teachers how technology can help them succeed in education.

Quest for College, which produced an informational packet prepared on a flash drive and in print that consolidated all of the useful information high-school students at the Paiute Neighborhood Center need to know about preparing for college.

Amplif(i) it Bash, a free event was held in partnership with notMYkid for 150 area school children and 70 parents at Scottsdale Gymnastics, to draw attention to issues surrounding bullying and positive life choices among middle-school children.

Project CANdo partnered with the Salt River Fields and the Arizona Diamondbacks to present a canned-food drive at a spring-training game that featured a pyramid stack of cans, which were all donated to Vista del Camino Food Bank.

And the winning team, Victorious Secret, earned both the audience and judges choice awards, developed a volunteer recruitment program for Foothills Caring Corps, partnering with corporations and other community partners to supply an on-going, stable group of volunteers to assist its mission serving older adults who are homebound and disabled so they can maintain an independent lifestyle.

What a spectacular group of people representing great organizations! Class 28 Dominates!!!

Scottsdale Leadership www.hauteeventphotographs.com

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Caps Off to the 2nd Annual Title I Dream Fair!

Mary Ellertson
Scottsdale Unified School District

Dream FairClose to three hundred Scottsdale family members participated in the 2nd Annual Scottsdale Unified School District’s Title I Dream Fair, held in November at Coronado High School.  Developed by Scottsdale Leadership Class 26 in support of SUSD students and families, the Dream Fair’s overwhelming success for two years in a row has earned it a permanent spot on the school calendar, guaranteeing the event to be one that parents, students, and local community members can look forward to each year.

Mary Ellertson, Title I Coordinator for SUSD, played a vital role in making this a sustainable event.  Coining the slogan, “From Cradle to Career,” Ellertson was passionate about spreading the message that it is never too early to prepare for college.

Dream FairThe goal of the Dream Fair was to level the playing field so that all children have the opportunity to be prepared for college or a career.  Many students in local Scottsdale communities will be the first generation to apply to college and need guidance on how this process works.  Title I funds, which are designed to help close the achievement gap between disadvantaged minority students and their peers, combined with the donations of local businesses and community members, will help keep the Dream Fair a SUSD tradition.

This year’s Dream Fair hosted two motivating Keynote Speakers, former NFL player, Dr. Ray Otis Perkins, a strong advocate of education who shared his message “not just to survive but to strive,” and Gary Trujillo, a graduate of Harvard Business School and co-founder of Southwest Harvard Group Venture Capital.

Health Occupation Students of AmericanStudent performances in music and dance, booths with information about careers and strong study habits, food, and discussions about how dreams can come true were a few of the many exciting offerings of the Dream Fair.  As stated by one attending parent, “We really did not know what to expect when coming but this was an amazing event!  Both of my children learned so much… we hope you continue the Dream Fair!”

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Your Time To Act—Participate in the Scottsdale Visioning Town Hall

City of Scottsdale

Kit Weiss
Neighborhood Services Manager, City of Scottsdale

You have an opportunity to shape the future of your community by participating in the Scottsdale Visioning Town Hall. Participants will craft a draft vision statement for Scottsdale’s General Plan 2014 process. It’s a key first step in the community’s efforts to guide how the city matures over the next 20 years.

The Town Hall will take place over three half-day sessions on Feb 6, 7 and 11, at the Monterra special events center at WestWorld. The application is available online through Jan. 11, at www.ScottsdaleGP.com.  The Arizona Town Hall organization is overseeing the Visioning Town Hall, including selecting the participants and facilitating the discussion. The nonprofit organization will pick about 100 participants who represent a broad, cross-section of the community.

The community visioning effort also will include a Future Leaders Town Hall from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan 24, at the SkySong Innovation Center, 1475 N. Scottsdale Road. It’s open to the first 100 registrants, ages 16-22. Scottsdale’s young community members will share their hopes for the future of Scottsdale during this special event. Registration for this event is open through Jan. 18, at www.scottsdaleGP.com.

For additional information contact (480) 312-3111 or email generalplan@scottsdaleaz.gov

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Cardboard City Constructed

photocastle

Kiem Ho, Class 26
Director of Business Development & Innovation, Laundry Care, Henkel Consumer Goods, Inc.

On a cool October 26th night, I camped out with my 3 elementary-aged children under the stars.  However, instead of sleeping in a cozy tent under the stars in the forest, we were camped out in our own make-shift and I may add drafty (I guess duct tape can’t fix everything) cardboard box home situated under the dim lights of Scottsdale Stadium.  My family was not alone as 350 other people also camped out in their own constructed cardboard boxes that ranged from the elaborate such as a castle with a functioning drawbridge to a simple box that was opened on both ends.  This “campout” was part of Family Promise’s second annual event called Cardboard City, an event which helped bring awareness to a growing problem in our community- family homelessness.

photo 2I participated in Cardboard City not only due to being a board member of Family Promise but also because of my association with the Scottsdale Leadership Board, which came to support this community need.  Pattie Counce (Board President), Carol Damaso (President Elect), Suzanne Paetzer, Tom Billard, Kevin Donovan, Mike Merucci along with Chris Irish (Executive Director) were instrumental in volunteering and in securing products from Forever Living and Henkel Consumer Goods that were packed throughout the night making up 1,000 hygiene kits.

Ultimately, Cardboard City successfully raised $40,000 (net) with significant support from Mark-Taylor Inc., which also donated a year of free rent for 2 families.  Local media covered the event bringing needed awareness to this issue.  The potential effect of this kind of community support was best summarized by a recent graduate of the Family Promise program who highlighted how Family Promise not only gave her family shelter but also the loving support necessary to move beyond homelessness.  This single mother is currently enrolled in law school.

photo 5At the end of the night, I was glad to know that my box sleeping days were temporary.  Unfortunately, this is not the case for many families which have to endure homeless nights uncertain for how long.  I’m thankful that Scottsdale Leadership could join with Family Promise and others to make a difference for homeless families in our community.  Find out how you can make a difference by visiting:  familypromiseaz.org.

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YMCA helps our community, you can help the YMCA!

By Jane Blacker,Class 19
Realtor, Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty

Participating in Scottsdale Leadership is one of the best ways to enhance your leadership opportunities in the community. Since graduating from Class 19, I have had the good fortune of serving on the board of directors for Scottsdale Area Chamber of Commerce and Scottsdale Leadership to include a year as board president.

Currently I’m focused on building support for the Scottsdale/PV YMCA.  Each year the Strong Kids and Families Campaign provides multiple resources and funding for many different programs. The programs benefit infants through seniors. Our Golf Tournament is coming up!

Please register for the Scottsdale/PV YMCA golf tournament to be held on Friday, Nov. 16 at Stonecreek Golf Course starting at 7:30. Included with your registration is complimentary dinner and silent auction at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort the night before along with complimentary pastries and coffee, lunch buffet, and free practice balls at the tournament. And of course we’ll have many fun contests and prizes! To register, contact Tracy Vick at 602-212-6038 or tvick@vosymca.org.

If you are not interested in golf but would like to enjoy a wonderful evening for a great cause you may join us for food, drinks, and entertainment the night before the golf tournament. This gourmet dinner and silent auction will be held Thursday, Nov. 15 at 6:00 p.m. at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort.

Golf rates are $600 for a Foursome
Individual $175
Just Dinner tickets for $50
**If you book a foursome or sponsorship package, additional dinner tickets are $25!

I truly enjoy serving on the Y’s board of directors and know our community is healthier because of its presence. I hope you also appreciate its value and join me at this FUNdraising golf event!

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Partnering to support local YOUTH!

Scottsdale LeadershipZack Barna, Scottsdale Leadership Board Member, Class 24
President, Boompromo

The Scottsdale Active 20-30 club has supported Scottsdale Leadership for many years. Their interest in our community’s youth makes for a great partnership for our annual Youth Leadership Award. As a partner, the 20-30 Club is offering Scottsdale Leadership alumni a $50 discount on tickets to their upcoming event!

The NiteFlite Red Carpet Gala is on Saturday, October 13 at 6:30 p.m.  It’s a fabulous evening of unique experiences held on the beautiful grounds of Talking Stick Resort.

You’ll experience LIVE fire and aerial performances, feel like a celebrity when your photo is taken on the red carpet, dance to local bands and DJ’s, smoke a stogies in the cigar lounge AND indulge in free food, drinks, and desserts provided by the Valley’s best restaurants.

Proceeds benefit The Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale and other local children’s charities.

Let’s join our partner for some fun!

Use discount code: SL2030 (gives $50discount on $150 VIP Ticket at checkout)
Tickets available online Scottsdale20-30,NiteFlite

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Scottsdale Leader Recognition

Rachel Brockway, Class 23
Scottsdale Leadership Marketing and Resource Development Manager

Scottsdale Leadership is now accepting nominations for the 13 Annual Spirit of Community Leadership Awards.
Nominations are open for the following:
Frank W. Hodges Alumni Achievement Award
Presented by Prestige Cleaners, this award commemorates Class I graduate, Frank Hodges, by recognizing an alumnus of Scottsdale Leadership who has made a significant and notable contribution to the community. Nominations are due September 7. Click here for nomination form.

Drinkwater Community Leadership Award
Presented by Merrill Lynch, the Drinkwater award commemorates former Scottsdale Mayor Herb Drinkwater’s commitment to Scottsdale. Nominees for this award are not alumni of Scottsdale Leadership, but rather those who have demonstrated outstanding community leadership and service. Nominations are due September 7. Click here for nomination form.

Corporate Leadership Award
Presented by Henkel Consumer Goods, Inc. This award honors a company that supports a philosophy and process for involving employees in community service, honors humanitarian values, and positively impacts the community through leadership and financial support. Nominations are due September 7. Click here for nomination form.

Youth Leadership Award
Presented by Scottsdale Active 20-30 Club & Foundation, this award honors a youth leader in their junior or senior year of high school. Nominees are leaders in their school, family, community and extracurricular activities. Nominations are due September 14.   Click here for nomination form.

Award recipients will be honored at Scottsdale Leadership’s 13 Annual Spirit of Community Leadership Awards Luncheon, on Dec. 14. For more information, call 480-627-6710 or visit scottsdaleleadership.org .

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Play it Forward project wins the prize!

By CHRIS IRISH
Scottsdale Leadership Executive Director

Class 26’s Project Pay It Forward Day presentations were inspiring. Five teams made huge impacts by developing projects that addressed needs in our community. Held at the Civic Center Library and sponsored by the Scottsdale Charros, a panel of judges selected Play it Forward as the winning project.

Play it Forward is a new program developed to benefit Ear Candy Charity. Team members are Jeff Miller, Linda Walton, Tyler Butler, Jerry Scheirer, Terri Blau, Joe Holmes, and Todd Miller; Team advisor Denise Pruitt.

“Two things really stood out about this project”, said Vice-Mayor Linda Milhaven and member of the judging panel. “The fact that they engaged teenagers to help younger children and the thoroughness of the how-to-manual they wrote.”

The goal of the project is to get instruments out of people’s closets and into the hands of aspiring young musicians.  The project consisted of two components, a pilot musical instrument drive and developing a manual, ‘You Can’t Mess This Up’ Guide to Musical Instrument Drives, that provides marketing materials, guidelines and the support needed for any group to run a successful drive.

The pilot drive was held in conjunction with Arcadia High School’s Contemporary Music and Sound program (CMAS). With the project team’s assistance, CMAS students collected 34 instruments and raised $1000 to fund instrument clean-up and repairs prior to placing them in schools.

The manual provides any group, corporations, civic groups, high schools, etc., with the tools to run their own successful musical instrument drives, to benefit their local elementary and middle schools.

The team collaborated with Ear Candy to enhance their online donation system, to give future groups the ability to create and host their own Play it Forward page through the Ear Candy website.  This enables any group to direct potential donors to their specific drive and track their results in real time.  Teachers can request specific instruments so they are placed in classrooms where they are needed most.  Each instrument placed in a school provides immediate access for low-income children, impacting up to 10 children per year.  Instruments remain in the classroom, benefiting the following year’s students as well, compounding the impact.

Ear Candy is a local organization and intends to use Play it Forward to expand their reach and benefit music students across the country.  In honor of the project win, Ear Candy receives a $2000 donation from Scottsdale Leadership.

For more information on Ear Candy Charity and Play it Forward: www.EarCandyCharity.org

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Charting a course in a new economy

By Kimberly Crowther, Class 22
Communications Director, DC Ranch Community Council

The last few years have left most of us feeling lost at sea when it comes to the economy, but calmer waters in recent months have given individuals, businesses, and the public sector a glimpse of renewed prosperity on the horizon.

On April 18, Scottsdale Leadership provided the community the opportunity to gather its bearings at the 8th Annual Scottsdale Leadership Community Forum at the Scottsdale Resort and Conference Center. The crew leading the discussion included facilitator Jason Rose of Rose+Moser+Allyn Public Relations; Sherman Jennings from The Boeing Company representing the corporate sector; Susie Timm, a banker-turned-entrepreneur and owner of Girl Meets Fork Marketing & Media; Gangplank founder and innovator Derek Neighbors; and Len Jessup, Ph.D., Dean of University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management.

In summary, these were the points on the panelists’ compasses for navigating change in a new economy and charting a course for prosperity:

Innovation. Focus on solutions rather than policy when looking to the future. And don’t be unsettled by chaos when looking for those creative solutions.

People. Gone are the days of top-down communication. Thanks to social media, everyone has a voice. Engage employees and the community in the conversation and really listen to their opinions. You never know what valuable insight they have unless you do.

Passion. Discover what you or your business is really good at and do it. Catering to the masses doesn’t always provide the best return on investment. Discover the niche markets that share your enthusiasm and who will appreciate what you can do for them.
 
Sustainability. Investigate opportunities for collaboration and create mutually advantageous partnerships. Strong relationships with others help to ensure long-lasting success.

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