Author Archives: Alison Bailin Batz

Alison Bailin Batz

About Alison Bailin Batz

Alison Bailin Batz is a freelance writer and a senior account executive at HMA Public Relations.

charitable trust

Arizona Gives Day Raises Amost $1.4 million

The Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits and Arizona Grantmakers Forum, along with presenting sponsor FirstBank, announced that the 2014 Arizona Gives Day, a 24-hour online initiative encouraging Arizona residents to recognize and financially support the efforts of various nonprofits, raised $1,392,292 (up from $1,019,650 last year) for the nearly 1,000 registered organizations statewide, a 36% increase. In total, 13,856 unique donors took the time to make 18,080 total donations in support of this statewide initiative.

“Our state rallied again this year and demonstrated what tremendous power individual donors can have for our state’s nonprofit community,” said Patrick McWhortor, president and CEO of the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits. “Whether they had a favorite cause or not, Arizonans rose up and explored the many missions of our participating nonprofits and helped show our state’s generosity to the world.”

Thanks to a financial commitment FirstBank and other incentive-prize sponsors, Arizona Gives Day encouraged competitions throughout the course of the day that allowed nonprofits, who reached certain milestones – to receive additional funding. Those winning these incentive contests will be gifted prizes from $1,000 to $18,000 in additional funds, which will be verified within the next 60 days.

Arizona Gives Day received additional financial and in-kind support from a variety of organizations throughout the state including:

Arizona Community Foundation
Arizona Republic/AZCentral/12News
AZ Family
BHHS Legacy Foundation
Clear Channel Media Entertainment
Community Foundation for Southern Arizona
CopperPoint Mutual Insurance Company
Cox Communications
Eight – KAET PBS
FirstBank
Flinn Foundation
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Foundation
HAPI
Hickey Family Foundation
HMA Public Relations
Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust
St. Luke’s Health Initiatives
The Thunderbirds
Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust

According to Marissa Theisen, president and CEO of the Arizona Grantmakers Forum, “Gives Day initiatives across the country continue to see success and provide much-needed financial support to countless nonprofit organizations. Arizonans have much to be proud of in our second year.”

Scottsdale Names 2014 Youth of the Year

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale – celebrating its 60th anniversary this year – is pleased to announce Dalia Jimenez, a senior at Coronado High School and 12-year member of the Club’s Hartley & Ruth Barker Branch, has been named as its “2014 Youth of the Year.” Jimenez was honored with the award in front of more than 600 Scottsdale leaders during Celebrate Youth on March 22 at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, along with nine other amazing teens from the greater-Scottsdale area, who each took home honors as their individual Club’s Youth of the Year, respectively. Active in the organization’s Keystone Club, What’s Hip, SMART Girls and E-Crew programs, she is also engaged in helping the greater community, accumulating hundreds of community service hours by assisting at the Cesar E. Chavez Leadership Institute’s CARE program, where she cleans houses for over 175 families in need. She also volunteers for organizations including the Tumbleweed Center, Paiute Neighborhood Center and more. Jimenez will use the scholarship money granted to her through the Youth of the Year program toward earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering starting this fall from ASU’s Barrett Honors College.

She will next move on to the statewide Youth of the Year competition in April.

In addition to this honor, Jimenez was also recently nominated as the Teen Ambassador for the State Keystone Conference, where she was named as Arizona’s “Keystoner of the Year.”

Below is an excerpt from Jimenez’s Youth of the Year speech:

A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.

I often dream of the life of a “typical teen.”

This is a vision that I have had since the age of 10, when my childhood ended. Managing a produce business at the local swap meet is what my family life revolves around, where I am expected to wake up at 4 a.m. and load the produce onto the trailer so we can set up and be ready for the first customer by 7 a.m.
Yet, every time I wake up, I cannot help but question, “Why can’t I be like everyone else?”

Worrying about financial obstacles at such a young age creates stress for both my parents and me.

My escape is the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale’s Hartley & Ruth Barker Branch – the one place where I can be a teen just like everyone else. That white and blue building shaped me to become the young woman I am today.
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Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale

Boys & Girls Clubs honor local teens

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale is pleased to announce its 2014 Branch Youths of the Year, each of whom will be honored at Celebrate Youth on Saturday, March 22 at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort.
They are:

Melissa Ervin, a junior at Fountain Hills High School and 12-year member of the Mary Ellen & Robert McKee Branch in Fountain Hills, who has been active in the Leader in Training Program, My Club My Life Teen Reporters, Keystone Club and Career Preparation Programs at her branch.

Dani Haboush, a junior at Cactus Shadows High School and nine-year member of the Vestar Branch in Desert Ridge, who has been active in the Leader in Training Program, What’s Hip and Keystone Club at her branch.

Alexa Jenouri, a senior at Cactus Shadows High School and eight-year member of the Thunderbirds Branch in north Scottsdale, who has been active in the Leader in Training Program, Keystone Club, Europe Excursion Program and Money Matters Program at her branch.

Dalia Jimenez, a senior at Coronado High School and 11-year member of the Hartley & Ruth Barker Branch in Arcadia, who has been active in the Keystone Club, SMART Girls, What’s Hip and Europe Excursion Program at her branch.

Alaza Loring, a senior at Salt River High School and 11-year member of the Lehi Branch on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, who has been active in the Leader in Training Program and SMART Girls, Torch Club and SMART Moves at her branch.

Marissa Masters, a senior at Saguaro High School and 10-year member of the Rose Lane Branch in Scottsdale, who is active in the Keystone Club, Europe Excursion Program, What’s Hip and Leader in Training Program at her branch.

Leonel Reyes, a junior at Arcadia High School and 11-year member of Outreach Services in Scottsdale, who has been active with the Leader in Training Program, Passport to Manhood, Torch Club and Keystone Club at his branch.

Ashley Thompson, a junior at Desert Mountain High School and seven-year member of the Virginia G. Piper Branch in north Scottsdale, who has been active in Leader in Training Program, What’s Hip, Money Matters and Keystone Club at her branch.

Kristofferson Walker, a senior at Seligman High School and seven-year member of the Peach Springs Branch on the Hualapai Indian Community, who has been active in Leader in Training Program, SMART Moves, Money Matters and Keystone Club the at his branch.

Lane Yazzie, a junior at Salt River High School and four-year member of the Red Mountain Branch on the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, who has been active in the Passport to Manhood, Money Matters and Keystone Club at his branch.

Presented by Tiffany & Bosco and Great American Title, more than 600 civic and community leaders are expected at Celebrate Youth, which also includes a silent and live auction, dinner and live entertainment and performances from the Club youth. At the close of the evening, one of the 10 branch Youths of the Year will be named as the overall Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale Youth of the Year, taking home a $5,000 scholarship, and all others will earn a $1,000 scholarship. Some other corporate sponsors joining Tiffany & Bosco and Great American Title are General Dynamics C4 Systems, Go Daddy, Republic Services, UMB Bank, Chasse Building Team, First Bank and First Western Trust.

“The Youth of the Year program is a premier character and leadership initiative which has been in existence for more than 60 years,” said Janet Caldarelli, co-chair of Celebrate Youth. “Recipients of the award are chosen based on each finalist’s demonstration of moral character, life goals, leadership, poise, public speaking ability and service to the Club, community and family.”

The overall 2014 Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale Youth of the Year will continue on to the state-level competition with other organizations from across Arizona. The winner of the state competition advances to the Pacific Region Youth of the Year competition held later this year, with the opportunity to continue to the national event.

Tickets for Celebrate Youth start at $175/per person. Tables and event sponsorships are available at www.celebrateyouthgala.org or by calling 480-344-5682.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale provides a positive, safe and fun environment to help 17,500 youth of all ages and backgrounds develop the qualities needed to reach their full potential. The Club offers more than 100 youth development programs emphasizing five core areas including: the arts; character and leadership development; education and career development; health & life skills; and sports, fitness and recreation. The organization’s nine branches and multiple outreach sites are located in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, Fountain Hills and the Salt River Pima-Maricopa and Hualapai Indian Communities. For more information, visit www.bgcs.org.

Bank Teller Counting Money

How to shop for a business bank

Finally, after what feels like a decade of financial woe, Arizona businesses are on the uptick again.

And not only businesses, it seems, but banks, too.

So, with numerous local, regional and national banks in the area to choose from, how should one best go about choosing a bank for their business in this brave new economic world?

“Choosing a bank is much like choosing a business partner. A good partner should share your core values and offer the resources, expertise and services you need to achieve your long-term financial goals,” says Kenneth Kellaney, senior vice president and senior regional commercial manager at National Bank of Arizona. “A bank should act like customer’s window, in that it shouldn’t be seen, but should provide protection, framework and focus for your financial vision.”

Bill Aust, managing director of The Biltmore Bank of Arizona, agrees and notes that a banking partnership should begin by asking questions (see breakout).

CONVENIENCE MATTERS
“One of the biggest questions we get asked by our potential customers is about our online banking services,” says Aust. “A decade ago, a bank’s location – and distance from the customer – was the key driver in many businesses’ decisions on where to bank. Today, with so many online platforms, some of our best customers are in outlying areas of our state or even beyond.”

According to Aust, online services allow banks to focus beyond their physical location, and conversely allow businesses to look beyond theirs as well.

“Absolutely consider convenience before making a decision. In addition to mobile services, some financial institutions have branches with a personal banker you can work with one-on-one while others only exist online,” says John Medina, senior vice president and division manager at Washington Federal.

TIME MATTERS
Time, in this case, is two-fold.

“Take your time when choosing a banking partner,” says Medina. “Invest the time to find the bank that provides the services that are most important to your business. Whether it is a sweep account to manage cash flow or the ability to send wire transfers from your office, knowing your options and what your bank can provide is important.”
Conversely, running a business is a time-consuming job, so time becomes of the essence eventually.

“It’s important that once you choose a financial institution, you ensure they can help you manage your time and meet the changing needs of your business promptly and regularly. Choosing a single financial services provider to accommodate all your business needs will save you time and money.

A few products and services that some banks offer to help you save you time and help you effectively manage your business include payroll services, merchant services, insurance, treasury management services, foreign exchange services, and business loans and lines of credit,” says Jennifer Anderson, business banking manager for Wells Fargo Arizona.

TRUST MATTERS
Anderson also notes it’s important to choose a bank that can act as a trusted financial advisor to help your business grow and succeed financially.

This is often where your own values – and those of the bank – come into play.

According to Kellaney, one should always weigh five initial core value propositions when considering a banking relationship. They are:
• A 360-degree banking philosophy: Your bank should offer comprehensive financial solutions to meet all of your personal and business banking needs, making your day-to-day banking efficient and effective.
• Perspective: Your bank should share your vision for your future and provide unique financial strategies to help you make it a reality.
• Reserve: Your bank should offer exclusive products and services to you in order to provide flexibility, convenience and a premium return on your funds.
• Collaboration: Your bank should bring value to your relationship and help you network with beneficial contacts.
• Life: Your bank should make managing your finances easy, convenient and rewarding, so that you can spend more time focusing on what’s really important to you.

Also, according to Medina, make sure the bank has sufficient capital to be considered financially sound. You can find information about the health of banks online at www.fdic.gov.

“At the end of the day, a business owner wants a financial institution that can provide the personal service they require,” says Medina. “The right institution understands the local business landscape and adds value to the business as it grows and changes.”

THINGS TO CONSIDER

Here are 20 questions to ask when considering a banking partner, according to experts at The Biltmore Bank of Arizona.

1. What is the bank’s reputation?
2. What are my current and mid-term credit needs?
3. What are my long-term needs?
4. Does the bank offer remote services? If not, wheres the bank located?
5. What have I liked and disliked about my prior banking relationships?
6. Will I need specialized help and attention?
7. Does the bank have customers in my industry? Will they allow me to talk to them?
8. Do I prefer a large or a small bank?
9. How involved do I want my bank to be in my business? Will they be willing to be this involved?
10. Will my bank be willing and able to recommend me for services outside the banking realm?
11. Who will be the key parties at the bank who I will be commonly involved with?
12. Do I believe that my bank will approach my problems as their problems?
13. What do the bank’s most satisfied and least satisfied customers say about them?
14. Does the bank have the necessary technology to meet my needs?
15. Does the bank allow me access to their executive leadership and management as needed?
16. What is the bank’s credit limit?
17. Is the bank financially sound, and how do I determine that?
18. How does the bank charge for the transactions that I will be doing?
19. Do the bank’s values mirror mine and my business’ values?
20. What are the bank’s hours and is there someone to assist me after hours?

Lizzie Kim

Kim Named to ASU Center for Emergency Management

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP today announced that Leezie Kim, a partner in the firm’s Phoenix office, has been named to the ASU Center for Emergency Management and Homeland Security Advisory Council.

The ASU Center’s advisory council executives provide extensive expertise from all sectors of emergency management and homeland security. The council advises the center regarding solution innovations and research, and affords insight into emerging trends, needs and requirements such that the center is at the forefront of solution delivery, innovation, research and academic preparation.

Kim is a partner in the Quarles & Brady Corporate Services Group. Her practice focuses on helping clients navigate the laws of national security and international business transactions as well as health care and restaurant business transactions. She returned to the law firm following four years of service as a White House appointee to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and as general counsel to Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano.

While serving as deputy general counsel for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in Washington, D.C., Kim became involved with aviation security, border entry matters and customs issues at airports, including the federal response to the 2009 Christmas day airline underwear explosive attempt and the implementation of the new airport security procedures thereafter. In 2012, Kim was appointed to the Phoenix Aviation Advisory Board by Mayor Greg Stanton and the City Council.

Kim earned her law degree from the University of Virginia and her undergraduate degree from Rice University.

scottsdael.kids

Parsons Foundation Donates $75,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale has been given a $75,000 grant from The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation. The grant will support the Fine Arts program set to take place throughout the year at the organization’s nine Clubs and multiple outreach sites.

“Fine Art programming is crucial to youth development for many reasons,” says Steve Davidson, President and CEO at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale. “These competencies instill a sense of pride and appreciation for the arts, and regular opportunities for youth to express themselves in new, thoughtful and positive ways.”

The Fine Arts program is provided throughout the year with approximately 450 youth and teens, ages 6-18, participating each week. The Program is led by experienced Club professionals with arts education backgrounds. Members are exposed to a broad range of competencies and mediums and are continually encouraged to develop new skills and talents, express themselves, and expand individual creativity. Fine Art projects can range from the more simple, to longer term and more complex endeavors using mediums such as monochromatic drawing, watercolor, mixed media, sculpture and more.

“Art has the ability to transform how children think and learn,” says Renee Parsons, co-founder of The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation. “The Fine Arts program helps build self-esteem and self-confidence and foster creative expression, all critical life and social skills. We are delighted for the opportunity to be involved.”

In addition to the Fine Arts program, The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation is also a major sponsor at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale’s fall taste event – Live & Local. The event will not only celebrate the best in Arizona food, music and live entertainment but also kick-off the Club’s Fine Art Exhibit which is set to travel to various Valley locations during the fall and holiday season. Locations to be released soon. For more information about the event please visit www.liveandlocal.bgcs.org.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale provides a positive, safe and fun environment to help 17,500 youth of all ages and backgrounds develop the qualities needed to reach their full potential. The Club offers more than 100 youth development programs at the organization’s nine branches and multiple outreach sites located in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, Fountain Hills and the Salt River Pima-Maricopa and Hualapai Indian Communities. For more information, visit www.bgcs.org.

law

Quarles & Brady Announces New Phoenix Partners

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP today announced that the following Phoenix attorneys have been elected to partnership by the firm’s executive committee:

Stanton E. Johnson is a commercial real estate lawyer with extensive experience in acquisitions and sales, development, leasing and property management. His experience includes representation of homebuilders, developers and land bankers in the acquisition, development and financing of master-planned residential communities; representation of commercial property developers in the development and management of office, retail and industrial properties; representation of banks in the management, leasing and sale of bank-owned properties; representation of court-appointed receivers in the management and sale of hotel, industrial and residential properties in multiple states and more. Johnson is a member of the Urban Land Institute, the Maricopa County Bar Association and the State Bar of Arizona. He also serves on the board of directors for the Habitat for Humanity of Central Arizona. He earned his law degree from University of Utah College of Law (J.D., 2002) and his undergraduate degree from Brigham Young University (B.S., 1999).

Brenda Maloney Shafer is a member of the Health Law Group. Her practice focuses primarily in health law and, in particular, health care regulatory and transactional work. Ms. Maloney Shafer advises health care providers and organizations on regulatory and operational compliance and business development. She has experience drafting and negotiating contracts for a variety of health care providers and entities, including physician employment agreements, professional services arrangements, pharmacy benefit management agreements and 340B pharmacy services agreements. Brenda has represented physicians, nurses, pharmacists and other health care providers before several state licensing boards. Maloney Shafer is a member of the state bars of Arizona, New Mexico and North Carolina, and of the American Health Lawyers Association. She earned her law degree from the University of New Mexico (J.D., cum laude, 2001) and her Master of Law degree in Health Law from Saint Louis University (LL.M., 2002). She received her undergraduate degree from Creighton University (BSN, 1993). Prior to law school, Brenda served as an active duty officer in the United States Army Nurse Corps.

Lauren Elliott Stine is a member of the Commercial Litigation Group and the Appellate subgroup. Her experience includes representing local and national corporations in complex corporate and contract disputes, assisting clients in special action and appellate proceedings in state and federal courts, and representing local and national clients in health care, real estate, professional liability, financial services and construction litigation matters. Stine was selected for inclusion in the Southwest Super Lawyers®– Rising Stars 2013 Edition (Business Litigation). She is a member and former officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Phoenix MetOrg Board, she served as the Phoenix-office co-chair for the firm’s Quarles Cares community service program and is the pro bono coordinator for the firm’s Phoenix office. She earned her undergraduate degrees (B.A. and B.S., summa cum laude, 2003) and her law degree (J.D., magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, 2006) from Arizona State University.

Susan Brichler Trujillo practices in the areas of health law and litigation & dispute resolution. Her practice includes representation of health care clients, including retail pharmacies, pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers and wholesale distributors, pharmacy benefit managers, hospitals, behavioral health providers and nursing homes in the areas of regulatory compliance, contract disputes, licensing issues and litigation matters. Brichler Trujillo is a member of Lorna Lockwood Inn of Court, the American Bar Association and the Association of Arizona Health Care Lawyers. She also serves on the board of directors for Community Legal Services. Brichler Trujillo received her law degree from University of Notre Dame Law School (J.D., 2004) and her master’s (M.A., 1998) and undergraduate degrees (B.A., 1995) from the University of Arizona.

Amy R. Cotton is a member of the firm’s Health Law Group. As a licensed physical therapist and health care attorney, she has more than 14 years of experience in the health care industry. Her practice includes advising clients on regulatory and compliance issues, business development and defending clients before professional boards. Amy has experience with advising clients regarding compliance with pharmaceutical laws and regulations; drafting policies and procedures relating to pharmacy practice, HIPAA and health care business activities; regulatory compliance with laws relating to Discount Medical Provider Organizations, Pharmacy Benefit Management and Third Party Administration; and advising health care clients regarding marketing and business development and drafting marketing agreements. She is a member of American Health Lawyers Association, the Mayor’s Commission on Disability Issues and Arizona Autism United. Amy is also a licensed physical therapist. She received her law degree from Pepperdine University School of Law (J.D., 2005) and her undergraduate degree from Truman State University (B.S., cum laude, 1996). She also earned her Master of Physical Therapy degree from A.T. Still University, Arizona School of Health Sciences in 1999.

cancer.ytratment

Cancer Center Creates Synergy with Like-Minded Life Savers

Cancer is a scary word.

“The word ‘cancer’ is actually the general name given to some 100-plus diseases from breast to lung to skin cancer, and is when cells in a specific part of the body begin to grow out of control,” said Dr. Daniel Reed, co-founder of Arizona Center for Cancer Care (AZCCC) in Peoria.

While the word itself may be general, those fighting its 100-plus diseases are anything but.

“No two cancer patients are alike – and no two patients’ treatment should be either,” said Dr. Reed, who understands this firsthand as his grandmother fought breast cancer while he was in medical school, inspiring him to go into the field.

Depending on a patient’s needs, he/she may require cancer treatment with chemotherapy, radiation therapy or a combination of both. If being treated with a combination, West Valley patients were often required to go to different cancer centers throughout the Northeast and Southeast Valley – sometimes hours away – for regular care. Unsatisfied with West Valley patients’ access to nearby facilities and support services, Dr. Reed partnered with fellow specialists Drs. Christopher Biggs and Terry Lee in 2008 to launch Arizona Center for Cancer Care in Peoria. Their mission, simply put, was to become the future of cancer treatment in Arizona.

“Our multi-specialty treatment center was designed to give us the ability to offer comprehensive cancer care to patients on this side of town – something never done before in this community,” said Dr. Reed.

Upon launching the facility, the group quickly became the first of its kind to offer West Valley patients Brachytherapy, which is an effective, less-invasive treatment for prostate, breast, lung, esophageal, gynecologic and head/neck cancers, among others. They also became the first to invest in and offer Radiosurgery to the area using a state-of-the-art technology called RapidArc® radiation therapy.

“This very precise form of therapeutic radiation uses beams of radiation to treat cancerous tissues without a surgical incision or opening, allows patients to receive treatment in as little as 10 minutes, compared to the several hours it used to take with older technologies like the cyber knife and gamma knife,” said Dr. Reed.

In 2008 the radiation oncologist and team realized they were ready to expand and partnered with prominent medical oncologist Dr. Devinder Singh and his practice, Arizona Center for Hematology and Oncology, increasing the practice to 10 physicians and the West Valley’s first comprehensive cancer practice. By 2011, when the Peoria center became Arizona’s only freestanding radiation oncology facility to earn The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval™ for accreditation, they had also added gynecological cancer treatment to their growing list of patient services, another first for the West Valley.

Over the past year, two major events have happened:
First, it partnered with Arizona Breast Cancer Specialists (ABCS) and Arizona Radiation Oncology Specialists (AROS) to expand into the Scottsdale and Southeast Valley markets.
Then, thanks in part to relationships with ABCS and AROS, the group joined together to enter into a long-term relationship with Scottsdale Healthcare, wherein AZCCC is now overseeing the Piper Center’s ENTIRE radiation oncology wing and beyond.

Today, the practice in total now boasts 52 physicians, more than 200 employees and 20 partner offices Valleywide as a result.

“We are a cancer center without walls whose services stretch into every inch of this community, offering the West Valley with the best doctors, best treatment technologies and best research in the country,” says Dr. Reed. “Cancer is a disease of survivors – and we want to keep it that way.”

Kimberly Leach Johnson

Quarles & Brady Elects First Female Chair

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP and its chairman John W. Daniels Jr. today announced that Kimberly Leach Johnson has been selected as the firm’s next chairperson. Her term begins on October 1, 2013. Fredrick G. Lautz has been re-appointed as the firm’s managing partner.

“There are many outstanding partners at Quarles who could lead us forward, but Kim is a perfect reflection of the firm’s tradition of practice excellence and its progressive vision,” said Daniels. “She is an exceptional attorney and a collaborative, client-centric, business-minded leader, whose commitment is unsurpassed. I look forward to supporting her leadership. She understands that the most important attribute a firm can have is to create value for its clients. She will make sure Quarles continues to focus on that above all else.”

Johnson was most recently chair of the firm’s Finance Committee and managing partner of Quarles & Brady’s Naples and Tampa, Florida offices, and she continues to serve as a member of the firm’s elected Executive Committee. She is the first woman to serve as Quarles & Brady’s firm chair, adding to the organization’s long history of women leaders.

John Daniels will serve as chairman emeritus of the firm, in which role he will continue to focus on strategic counseling to business clients, with particular emphasis on financial services, health care and mid-market growth entities. Daniels will also serve as chair of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, a position he was elected to in January 2013.

“It’s been a privilege to lead Quarles & Brady with John. His energy, optimism, strategic vision and business acumen are unmatched, as is his commitment to client service. Those were exactly the leadership attributes we needed to succeed over the last six years,” said Lautz. “I look forward to working with Kim, whose insights and collaborative approach will further strengthen our culture and commitment to creating value for our clients and developing long-lasting client relationships.”

Johnson will work closely with Lautz and the rest of the leadership team in each of Quarles & Brady’s eight U.S. offices to help achieve the firm’s business plans.

“John Daniels sustained and grew Quarles & Brady during one of the most challenging economies in recent history, and I am pleased to have the opportunity to build upon that success,” said Johnson.

In Phoenix, office managing partner Jon E. Pettibone said, “We appreciate John Daniels’ sterling contribution to the success of our firm and our Phoenix office and look forward to working more closely with Kim Johnson, who is an excellent attorney, administrator and leader.”

wine

Road Trip Alert: California Celebrates September Wine Month

Anyone looking for a quick getaway to get them through the (hopefully) final 100-plus degree days of the year?

If so, just look to the Northwest to California, as September is officially wine month from Temecula to Paso Robles to Napa – and everywhere in between.

California Wine Month in September was created by the Wine Institute and the California Association of Winegrape Growers and proclaimed by Governor Jerry Brown to highlight the state’s rich wine history and all that its vintners and growers add to the lifestyle and economy of the Golden State. Dozens of wineries and wine regions throughout the state celebrate California Wine Month each September with special tastings, events and offers.

Below is just a snapshot of happenings through September 30:

Southern California

Temecula Valley’s 35 wineries are inviting fans to explore the Southland’s premier wine country in style. Those with a taste for adventure can take advantage of the Sip Passport, which visitors can exchange for a full tasting flight at any four wineries for just $35!

“September is the most beautiful time of year to visit wine country,” says Nick Palumbo, owner/winemaker of Palumbo Family Vineyards and president of the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association.  “The beginning of our harvest season is evident everywhere and the excitement level is high. Visitors have a good chance of seeing grapes being processed into wine or gondolas towed by tractors along the wine country roads.”

Temecula Valley offers a lot of great mid-week steals & deals, offering incentives to take a trip M-F, as opposed to the more crowded and sometimes more expensive weekends.  For monthly deals, just click here.

Visit TemeculaWines.org and click on Events to purchase Sip Passports or to explore what Sothern California Wine Country has to offer.

Inland Valleys

Lodi wine country rolls out the red carpet through September 30 for its second annual LoCA Road Trip Passport, offering an all-access pass to exclusive events and discounts from over 45 participating wineries. Passport holders can enjoy cycling excursions, vineyard tours, barrel tastings, bottling demonstrations, grape stomps, wine and cheese pairing classes, live music, winemaker dinners and more.
The Madera Vintners Association’s California Wine Month Tasting Reception will feature 10 regional wineries offering tastings, plus music and bites from local restaurants on Sept. 26.

Central Coast

Wine and food lovers can step into the pages of Sunset magazine and savor the California Central Coast wine country lifestyle Sept. 26-29 at Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast, featuring four days of culinary immersion in San Luis Obispo County, including culinary and outdoor adventure tours, wine and food celebrity seminars, more than 200 regional wine tastings, and evening events at Hearst Castle, Pismo Beach and at Vina Robles winery in Paso Robles. Nearby in the Paso Robles wine region, wine lovers can enjoy the 46 West Wineries Summer Block Party on Sept. 7 in Templeton, a mini-wine festival with tastings from 16 wineries along with great food and music.

Northern California

No time to put the top down and visit the wine trails? No problem! Take a California Wines Road Trip in one stop on Sept. 21 at the Wine Institute’s official California Wine Month celebration at San Francisco’s Ferry Building. Guests can taste more than 100 California wines from 12 regions with artisanal cheeses and salumi. Attendees can also enter to win one of several trips for two to California wine country.

Sailing and wine enthusiasts can pair their favorite pastimes at the Napa Valley Wine Lounge at America’s Cup Race Park through September 21, sampling Napa Valley wines by the glass and light bites as they watch the races from Piers 27/29 in San Francisco.

For addition information, please visit www.discovercaliforniawines.com.

Quarles & Brady's Roger K. Ferland

31 Quarles & Brady Attorneys Named to Best Lawyers

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced that 31 attorneys from its Phoenix office, and a total of 162 nationwide, have been selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2014. The local Quarles & Brady attorneys distinguished for excellence in their practice areas are:

·         Scott M. Berg (Banking and Finance Law)
·         Brian R. Booker (Commercial Litigation)
·         Joseph A. Drazek (Environmental Law / Litigation – Environmental / Natural Resources Law)
·         Lisa D. Duran (Immigration Law)
·         Steven P. Emerick (Corporate Law / Equipment Finance Law / Securities/Capital Markets Law)
·         Roger K. Ferland (Environmental Law / Litigation – Environmental)
·         Nicole France-Stanton (Commercial Litigation / Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants)
·         Jeffrey B. Fugal (Tax Law)
·         Jeffrey L. Gage (Real Estate Law)
·         Diane M. Haller (Real Estate Law)
·         John A. Harris (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law Litigation – Bankruptcy)
·         Robert P. Harris (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law)
·         Christian J. Hoffmann III (Corporate Law / Mergers and Acquisitions Law / Securities/Capital Markets Law / Securities Regulation)
·         Don P. Martin (Commercial Litigation / Legal Malpractice Law – Defendants / Litigation – Banking and Finance / Litigation – Real Estate)
·         Matthew Mehr (Banking and Finance Law)
·         Roger N. Morris (Health Care Law)
·         P. Robert Moya (Corporate Law / Leveraged Buyouts and Private Equity Law / Mergers and Acquisitions Law / Securities/Capital Markets Law)
·         Daniel L. Muchow (Environmental Law)
·         John Maston O’Neal (Commercial Litigation)
·         Jon E. Pettibone (Administrative/Regulatory Law / Employment Law – Management / Labor Law – Management)
·         James A. Ryan (Bet-the-Company Litigation / Commercial Litigation / Tax Law)
·         Edward Salanga (Litigation – Construction)
·         Brian Sirower (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law / Litigation Bankruptcy)
·         Derek L. Sorenson (Real Estate Law)
·         Kent W. Stevens (Banking and Finance Law)
·         Peter A. Terry (Banking and Finance Law)
·         James A. Ullman (Franchise Law)
·         C. Bradley Vynalek* (Commercial Litigation)
·         Jacque N. Westling (Banking and Finance Law / Corporate Law)
·         Lori L. Winkelman (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law)
·         Jeffrey H. Wolf (Franchise Law)

158765085

Cutting Your Cancer Risk

Picture yourself in a room of 20 people.

Of these 20 people, one will develop colorectal cancer in his/her lifetime.
“Colon cancer is among the most common cancers diagnosed in this country, with more than 100,000 new cases each year,” said Dr. Murali Murty of Arizona Center for Cancer Care in Scottsdale. “What’s more, it is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths with the American Cancer Society reporting there may be as many as 50,000 Americans losing their lives to this disease this year alone.”
But, this number need not be so staggering.
“Education on the disease, coupled with proactive methods for early detection and new treatment advances, can greatly reduce this number on a local and national level,” said Dr. Murty.

What is colon cancer?

Colon cancer is cancer of the large intestine. It is often found to be present along with cancer of the rectum, and is then referred to as colorectal cancer. Cancer that begins in the lining of 153010495the colon, or adenocarcinoma, accounts for over 90 percent of all colon cancer cases. In almost 100 percent of cases, the cancer starts as a polyp on the colon.

Who is at risk?

Colon cancer is color blind – meaning all races and ethnicities are at risk. And, while commonly thought to be a disease limited to males, it is just as easy for women to develop. Additional risks, according to Dr. David S. Mendelson of Pinnacle Oncology Hematology in Scottsdale, include:

• Age – those over 50
• Diet – those who are overweight, lacking in fiber and/or overindulging in alcohol
• Family history – those who have family members diagnosed with the disease
• Lack of exercise – those who don’t get enough cardiovascular exercise on most days of the week
• Smoking – long-term smoking increases one’s risk of nearly every kind of disease on the planet

Symptoms

“The bad news is that in its earliest – and more treatable stages – there aren’t apparent symptoms,” said Dr. Murty.
This is the No. 1 reason screening tests are critical.
“When we do start to see symptoms, which can include blood in the stool, chronic stomach cramps and unexplained weight loss, the cancer may have already reached a later stage,” said Dr. Mendelson.

Early detection

As Katie Couric has taught us, both men and women should get their first colonoscopy by age 50, and should repeat the process as requested by one’s medical professional, usually once every five to 10 years. A colonoscopy involves the insertion of a thin tube into one’s rectum by a medical professional to check the colon for any polyps or other growths that might be dangerous.
“And yes, you are sedated when this happens, so it is not nearly as scary as it sounds,” said Dr. Mendelson. “Other diagnostic tools may include blood tests, x-rays and/or CT scans.”
One should begin the screening process earlier if he or she has any family history of the disease or other GI-related issues, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Treatment

“Once the actual cancer is diagnosed, the next step is determining the stage and then usually the surgical removal of the cancer,” said Dr. Mendelson.
Chemotherapy or radiation therapy may be used in addition to surgery to treat the cancer, especially if it has spread to other areas of the body.
“Due to advances in treatment of colorectal cancer, more patients are spared the complete removal of anus and rectum these days. This means fewer patients need a colostomy bag. Generally, chemotherapy and radiation are given first to help shrink the rectal tumor,” said Dr. Murty.
After this, surgeons have a better chance of removing only the part of the rectum with the tumor and sparing the anus, which allows normal bowel function. In very early rectal cancers, surgeons may be able to remove the tumor with no additional chemotherapy or radiation at all.
“However, when required, radiation is much more tolerable and has far fewer side effects, thanks to technological advances in recent years,” said Dr. Murty.

Prevention

173329702The general rule of thumb is to start a cardiovascular exercise routine, quit and/or avoid smoking as well as avoid secondhand smoke and to take a good, hard look at one’s diet.
“We are forgetting to feed our colons, while polluting our bodies with useless junk,” said Dr. Frank W. Jackson of Jackson GI Medical. “Fiber, in particular, is lacking in virtually all American diets.”
And it shows.
“We tend to ignore how fiber and its ability to fuel the glorious cauldron of bacteria in our colons, which is quietly amongst our most powerful health organs, can help prevent disease,” said Dr. Jackson, who recommends prebiotic fibers, which help to feed the good bacteria in one’s colon, fueling its war against the bad, cancer-causing bacteria also present.
However, Americans are really only getting this critical fiber via wheat and onions; Europeans, on average, consume five times the amount daily.  As a result, many are turning to prebiotic supplement programs, like Prebiotin, readily available at most vitamin and health stores – and even Sprouts – in the area.

Arizona Business Financing

CFOs Show Growing Confidence in U.S. Economy

During the past year, chief financial officers (CFOs) have grown significantly more confident in the U.S. economy, according to the 2013 Spring CFO Survey from Grant Thornton LLP. The survey findings reveal that 45 percent of respondents believe the state of the U.S. economy will improve during the next six months, compared to just 31 percent in the fall and 25 percent last summer.

That confidence extends throughout the survey findings, with 44 percent of those surveyed predicting that industry financial prospects will improve during the next six months, compared to 34 percent in the fall. Since last summer, the number of CFOs who believe the pricing or fees charged by their industry will increase in the next six months has jumped seven percentage points to 37 percent. In addition, when CFOs were asked about employment opportunities during the next six months, more than a third (40 percent) said their company’s head count would increase, rising 6 percent from the fall.

“The results of our spring survey are encouraging — particularly with respect to the uptick in expectations for improved financial prospects,” said Stephen Chipman, chief executive officer of Grant Thornton LLP. “Seemingly, steady improvements in key economic indicators, including labor and housing, have helped stimulate greater optimism among CFOs, at least in the near-term.”

According to the survey findings, almost two-thirds of CFOs (65 percent) expect the average cost of an employee’s salary to increase during the next 12 months, up from 59 percent in the fall. The total cost of employee benefits, including bonuses (56 percent), stock options (72 percent), 401(k) match (86 percent), and other company-matched retirement contributions (81 percent), are expected to remain unchanged from the year prior.

These findings come on the heels of similar data from the Grant Thornton International Business Report, which found that optimism in the performance of the nation’s economy among U.S. business leaders rose from -4 percent in fourth quarter 2012 to 31 percent in first quarter 2013.

While increased optimism among CFOs was prevalent throughout the survey results, they still cite legislative bottlenecks as an area of concern. Almost half of all CFOs surveyed (47 percent) say they are unable to make a major decision that would allow their company to grow because of uncertainty surrounding the funding of the U.S. government. Thirty-one percent of respondents ranked tax reform as the second greatest bottleneck.

multimedia

Local Youth Honored at Digikids Film Festival

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale recently partnered with the Microsoft Store located at Scottsdale Fashion Square to showcase young Club members’ excellence in the area of multimedia art as part of the Digikids Film Festival. The program encourages Club members to learn and practice in digital arts, including movie making, music making, and graphic design.

The young honorees and the public got the chance to view their movies on the big screen, courtesy of the Harkins Theatre at Scottsdale Fashion Square. After the movie screenings, the festival moved to the Microsoft Store where a red carpet and awards presentation took place.

Award Winners
Pinnacle High School students Parker Bradshaw and Harrison Mosbaugh, members of the Club’s Vestar Branch in Desert Ridge, both took home “Best Actor” honors during the event for the exceptional work in their branch’s film “Living the Dream.”

Pueblo Elementary student Nhi Tran, a member of the Rose Lane Branch in Scottsdale, was named “Best Actress” for her work in her branch’s film, “Evil Dentist.”

Desert Mountain students Jake Davis and Aaron Fugelberg, members of the Virginia G. Piper Branch in North Scottsdale, earned the “Best Music Video” crown for their “White and Nerdy” musical short.

Rounding out the North Valley-area honorees were Copper Ridge Elementary students Jillian Miller and Samara Hamideh, members of the Thunderbirds Branch in North Scottsdale, won in the category of “Best Stop Motion” for their “Koala Cake” short.

Taking home “Best Movie” honors for their “Prison Break” movie submission during the event was none other than the team from Arcadia’s own Hartley & Ruth Barker Branch, including:
* Christa Palacio, 9, of Pima Elementary School
* Diego Davila, 9, of Arcadia Neighborhood Learning Center
* Adyson Anaya, 9, of Pima Elementary School
* Iliana Morales, 10, of Pima Elementary School
* Kimberly Sierra, 9, of Tonalea Elementary School

In addition, children from the Club’s Paiute Outreach Center in Arcadia were also honored with the “Best Scary Movie” award for their “A Pauite Haunting” short film submission. These honorees are:
* Jasmine Silva, 9, of Tavan Elementary School
* Jhosevetd Gutierrez, 13, of Ingleside Middle School
* Maria Gutierrez, 13, of Ingleside Middle School
* Melonie Alvarez, 9, of Tonalea Elementary School
* Jonothan Garcia, 7, of Tavan Elementary School
* Annay Lopez, 11, of Tonalea Elementary School

Taking home “Best Action Sequence” honors during the event was none other than the team from the Salt River Pima-Maricopa’s own Lehi Branch, including:
* Thalisie Paukgana, 11, of Kerr Elementary School
* Anthony Shippley, 11, of Kerr Elementary School
* Alex Miranda, 11, of Lehi Elementary School

In addition, taking home “Best Sound Effects” honors during the event was the team from the Club’s Red Mountain Branch, also on the reservation, including:
* Victoria Maynard, 10, of Whittier Elementary School
* Mekkhi Chiago, 11, of Whittier Elementary School
* Vincent Chiago, 10, of Whittier Elementary School
* Nate Wood, 12, of Whitman Elementary School
* Jared Wood, 11, of Whitman Elementary School
* Gregorio Martinez, 11, of Whittier Elementary School
* Alacia Carlisle, 11, of Whittier Elementary School
* Georgia Carlisle, 10, of Whittier Elementary School
* Hastiin Reina, 11, of Whittier Elementary School
* Elisette Hayes, 10, of Salt River Elementary School
* Amber Dorchester, 10, of Salt River Elementary School
* Arianna Flores, 11, of Salt River Elementary School

Taking home “Best Harlem Shake” honors, a new award based on the popular viral videos popping up online each day, during the event was none other than the team from Fountain Hills’ own Mary Ellen & Robert McKee Branch. Dozens of youth members helped plan the “shake” and participated in the video.

Each team of winners will now be entered into the national competition where it will be up against regional winners in all 50 states. National winners will be announced later this summer.
In addition to seeing their work on the big screen, the kids were honored at the event with a Microsoft Store goody bag filled with over $75 worth of items including a lunch pail, sunglasses, store discount cards, games and more.

Club members worked all year to master the skills of digital art through the program. The arts, which develops creativity and cultural awareness through all different types of mediums, is just one of five core areas focused on at the Boys & Girls Clubs. The non-profit organization also promotes leadership development, education, life skills and sports, fitness and recreation through their 100 youth development programs.

“We fully support creativity through technology, and we’re excited to deepen our commitment to the Scottsdale communities by providing technology and resources to the Boys & Girls Clubs,” says Melissa Brewer, Community Development Specialist at the Microsoft Store. “We were so impressed by the grasp youth have today on software tools and technology.”

Goldwater Institute

22 Quarles Attorneys make Southwest Super Lawyers

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced that twenty-two of its local attorneys have been named by Southwest Super Lawyers® magazine as among the top five percent of attorneys in Arizona for 2013. Susan Boswell, James Ullman, and Jeffrey Wolf were named among the Top 50 attorneys in Arizona and Susan Boswell, Lisa Duran, and Diane Haller were also named among the Top 25 Female attorneys in Arizona.

Additionally, 10 Quarles & Brady attorneys were named by Southwest Super Lawyers & Rising Stars as among the top up-and-coming attorneys in the state for 2013. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of lawyers in the state are named to the list.

Attorneys from the firm’s Arizona offices who were selected for inclusion in the 2013 Southwest Super Lawyers list are:

Brian R. Booker – Business Litigation
Susan G. Boswell – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights
Lisa D. Duran – Immigration
Roger K. Ferland – Environmental
Isaac M. Gabriel – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights
Diane M. Haller – Real Estate
John A. Harris – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights
Craig H. Kaufman – Business Litigation
Don P. Martin – Business Litigation
Roger N. Morris – Health Care
James F. Morrow – Banking
P. Robert Moya – Mergers & Acquisitions
John Maston O’Neal – Business Litigation
Jon E. Pettibone – Employment & Labor
Kevin D. Quigley – Business Litigation
James A. Ryan – Business Litigation
Derek L. Sorenson – Real Estate
Nicole France Stanton – Professional Liability: Defense
James A. Ullman – Franchise/Dealership
C. Bradley Vynalek – Business Litigation
Lori L. Winkelman – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights
Jeffrey H. Wolf – Franchise/Dealership

Quarles & Brady attorneys from the firm’s Arizona offices who were named to the 2013 Southwest Rising Stars list are:

Heather L. Buchta – Intellectual Property
Amy Cotton – Health Care
John S. Craiger – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights
David E. Funkhouser III – Business Litigation
Craig J. O’Loughlin – Employment & Labor
Ryan S. Patterson – Business Litigation
Kelly E. Singer – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights
Rowan P. Smith – Intellectual Property
Lauren Elliott Stine – Business Litigation
James L. Ugalde – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights

economy

U.S. Business Leaders Showing Signs of Optimism

On the heels of a pessimistic outlook during the fourth quarter of 2012, US business leaders show signs of increased optimism in the performance of the nation’s economy according to the latest data from the Grant Thornton International Business Report, a survey of 3,200 business leaders in 44 countries. In first quarter 2013, optimism among U.S. business leaders rose from -4 percent to 31 percent.

This finding accompanies IBR data that reveals an improvement in sentiment about most areas of business performance and stability. The net percent balance of US business leaders expecting revenues to increase in 2013 rose by eight percentage points from the fourth quarter. In addition, profitability expectations rose sharply in first quarter 2013, up 14 percentage points from the previous quarter. Encouragingly, hiring expectations in the United States remain above the global average. A net balance of 29 percent of business leaders in the United States foresee an increase in hiring during the coming year, a four-percentage point increase from the previous quarter and five percentage points above the global average.

“With the fiscal cliff and presidential election behind us, the anxiety has seemingly lessened among business executives,” said Stephen Chipman, chief executive officer of Grant Thornton LLP. “While uncertainty is still present, it’s encouraging to see such a large increase in optimism among the nation’s business leaders—particularly when it comes to employment, which is key to US economic health.”

The increase in optimism in the US economy is on par with what is occurring in other markets, with global business optimism up to its highest level since early 2011. Globally, a net balance of 27 percent of businesses are optimistic about the economic outlook, up from just 4 percent from the previous quarter. Following the United States, the next two largest economies in the world also saw sentiment improve. China business optimism rose from a net balance of 19 percent to 29 percent while Japan saw a major increase in optimism, from a net balance of -70 percent to -2 percent.

Still, there are some areas for improvement. Despite a modest uptick from the previous quarter, few U.S. businesses plan to invest in research and development in 2013, with a net balance of only 12 percent expecting an increase during the next 12 months. In addition, 36 percent of U.S. business leaders cite regulations and red tape as the number one factor stopping them from growing their operations in the next 12 months.

Girls on the Run (1)

Support Local on Arizona Gives Day

Every single resident in Scottsdale and beyond (this means you!) is being asked to do one simple thing today – give.

Why?

Musical Instrument Museum (MIM)

Musical Instrument Museum (MIM)

“On March 20, all Arizonans will be asked to participate in the first-ever Arizona Gives Day,” said Patrick McWhortor, president and CEO of the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits, who helped to develop the initiative in partnership with the Arizona Grantmakers Forum and a team of statewide leaders.

Beginning at midnight on March 20 and continuing until 11:59 p.m., Arizonans can go online at www.AZGives.org to support a local nonprofit in their community, or pledge their financial support to one of the hundreds of participating nonprofits across the state. A day dedicated to communities that care, Arizona Gives Day, presented by First Bank, will focus on giving back to the organizations whose invaluable efforts have helped empower communities and provide services, products and more to those in need.

Anne Rita Monahan Foundation

Anne Rita Monahan Foundation

The Gives Day movement began in Minnesota four years ago as a way to increase individual giving and help nonprofits raise awareness about their cause. Each year since, these initiatives have seen increased success and have helped countless organizations continue to provide the services and programs their communities need.

Today, Gives Days are becoming increasingly more popular, leading many other states like Colorado, Georgia, Alabama and now Arizona to expand the “flash-mob type” movement into their own states. Organizers of the Arizona Gives Day hope to see the same successful response during the 24-hour statewide online giving initiative on March 20.

“For as little as $10, nonprofits in Arizona can and do make a difference,” said McWhortor. “Together, we hope to raise more than $2 million on this single day.”

Nonprofit Participation

Among the nearly 850 nonprofits participating in this event are several from around the Scottsdale and surrounding area, including:

Cave Creek Museum, Desert Foothills Land Trust, Desert Foothills Library, Foothills Food Bank, HopeKids, Wild At Heart, Yes You Have A Choice/Sofia’s House, Project Linus, Bucket List Foundation, Go Green Now Foundation, Inc., Anne Rita Monahan Foundation, Arizona Helping Hands, Inc., Arizona Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale, Camelot Therapeutic Horsemanship, Inc., Childhelp, Cortney’s Place, Devereux Arizona, Family Promise of Greater Phoenix, Feeding Matters, Foothills Animal Rescue, Four Seasons Orchestra, Musical Instrument Museum, Greater Arizona Chapter of Association of Fundraising Professionals, Hope Village, ICAN, International Cancer Advocacy Network, Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Phoenix, MASK (Mothers Awareness on School-age Kids), McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, New Way Academy, notMYkid, Oasis Sanctuary Foundation LTD, Partners In Action, Phoenix Herpetological Society, Pinnacle Presbyterian Preschool, Power Paws Assistance Dogs, Inc, Reigning Grace Ranch, Scottsdale, Preparatory Academy, Scottsdale Training and Rehabilitation Services, Singleton Moms, Square One Inc., The Berceli Foundation, The New Foundation, The Purple Society, The Welcome to America Project, Tourette Syndrome Association of Arizona, Inc., Tumbleweed, Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center, Waste Not, Inc., Safe Haven for Animals

How to Participate

Businesses, schools and communities are encouraged to rally friends, family, classmates and co-workers leading up to the big day. Donors can learn more about the nonprofits participating in their community by logging on to the www.AZGives.org. Then help spread the word by joining the movement on Facebook and Twitter.

Giving is as easy is 1-2-3!

1. On March 20, visit www.AZGives.org

2. Click on “Donate”

3. Choose your nonprofit of choice and give away

Whether you give a little or give a lot, every donation will help the more than 20,000 deserving organizations statewide!

Goodwill of Central Arizona

Arizona Gives Day

This month, every single resident in Arizona (ahem – this means you!) is being asked to do one simple thing – give.

Why?

“On March 20, all Arizonans will be asked to participate in the first-ever Arizona Gives Day,” said Patrick McWhortor, president and CEO of the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits, who helped to develop the initiative in partnership with the Arizona Grantmakers Forum and a team of statewide leaders.

Beginning at midnight on March 20 and continuing until 11:59 p.m., Arizonans can go online at www.AZGives.org to support a local nonprofit in their community, or pledge their financial support to one of the hundreds of participating nonprofits across the state. A day dedicated to communities that care, Arizona Gives Day, presented by First Bank, will focus on giving back to the organizations whose invaluable efforts have helped empower communities and provide services, products and more to those in need.

The Gives Day movement began in Minnesota four years ago as a way to increase individual giving and help nonprofits raise awareness about their cause. Each year since, these initiatives have seen increased success and have helped countless organizations continue to provide the services and programs their communities need. Today, Gives Days are becoming increasingly more popular, leading many other states like Colorado, Georgia, Alabama and now Arizona to expand the “flash-mob type” movement into their own states. Organizers of the Arizona Gives Day hope to see the same successful response during the 24-hour statewide online giving initiative on March 20.

“For as little as $10, nonprofits in Arizona can and do make a difference,” said McWhortor. “Together, we hope to raise more than $2 million on this single day.

According to Marissa Theisen, president and CEO of Arizona Grantmakers Forum, donations made on Arizona Gives Day will help the state’s nonprofits:

·         Rally volunteers

·         Change lives

·         Build leaders

·         Develop networks

·         Fight for rights

·         Create scholarships

·         Champion critical community causes

“During the recent economic downtimes in Arizona and beyond, individual giving has declined. This is our chance to bring it back in a big way,” said Theisen.

Nonprofit Participation

Nearly 850 nonprofits from every inch of this state are taking part in this effort. To see if your favorite local cause is taking part, simply click here.

How to Participate

Giving is as easy is 1-2-3!

1.      Right now, drop everything you are doing and click here.

2.      Click on “Donate”

3.      Choose your nonprofit of choice and give away

Whether you give a little or give a lot, every donation will help the more than 20,000 deserving organizations statewide.

For more information, please visit www.AZGives.org.

Small Businesses getting help in down economy

U.S. Business Leaders Show Declining Optimism about Economy

U.S. business leaders continue to show a lack of optimism about the performance of the nation’s economy, according to the latest data from the Grant Thornton International Business Report, a survey of 3,200 business leaders in 44 countries. In fourth quarter 2012, optimism among US business leaders fell to -4 percent, the lowest since the depths of the financial crisis.

This finding accompanies a general lack of optimism about most areas of business performance and stability. For example, the net percent balance of US business leaders expecting revenues to increase in 2013 decreased by 10 percentage points from the third quarter. In addition, profitability expectations dropped by nine percentage point from the third quarter. As far as employment, arguably the country’s biggest concern, only a net balance of 25 percent of business leaders in the United States foresee an increase in hiring during the coming year, a three percentage point decrease from the previous quarter.

“The lack of confidence in, and optimism about, our economy among the nation’s business leaders shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone, given the ongoing fragile recovery and recent drama surrounding the fiscal cliff,” said Stephen Chipman, chief executive officer of Grant Thornton LLP. “During the next few months, our country’s political leaders should focus on resolving uncertainty so that business leaders, in this country and beyond, can gain the confidence in our economy that is crucial to US business competitiveness and the dynamic growth that comes with it.”

The notion that the recent debate about the fiscal cliff is affecting optimism about the economy correlates with other recent research from Grant Thornton US, which suggests 40 percent of CFOs have delayed decision making because of similar concerns.1

And though 39 percent of respondents believe there will be increased access to financing in the next 12 months, which often helps grow a business, 48 percent don’t expect to see any change. Slightly encouraging is that 74 percent of business owners plan to give employees raises in the next 12 months, though only 12 percent plan to give raises above the rate of inflation.

Interestingly, the lack of optimism in the US economy is actually quite different than what is occurring in other global markets. For example, business optimism in the emerging markets of Latin America remained relatively stable in the past year, and actually increased to 69 percent in the fourth quarter, up from 61 percent during the same period last year. The BRIC economies (34 percent to 39 percent) also remained consistently optimistic, and there has also been an increase in Asia Pacific (excl. Japan) (23 percent to 28 percent) during the same period.

By comparison, optimism in North America has been on a bit of a rollercoaster during the past year—going from 6 percent in the fourth quarter 2011 to 52 percent in the second quarter 2012, before falling to just 1 percent in the fourth quarter 2012. The G7 economies have seen similar fluctuations, while European businesses have reported a slow decline in business optimism.

“With such lack of optimism in our economy, many business owners may decide to postpone any major investments related to the future of their business, but this could be a mistake,” said Chipman. “In a market such as this, there are opportunities for certain businesses that have the foresight to concentrate on long-term growth opportunities by investing in the right people and infrastructure. Those businesses will be best positioned for success once sustained economic recovery is finally a reality.”

Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale

Boys & Girls Clubs Of Greater Scottsdale: 16,000 Happily Served and Counting

Each day, the staff at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale gets asked two questions – one by parents and one by kids.

Parents: Will my child benefit from being a part of the Club?
Kids: Am I going to have fun?

The short answer to both questions is a resounding, “YES!”

But, given these questions are asked so often, below is a snapshot of the true positive impact our local Club truly has on the community.

What is the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale?

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale provides a positive, safe and fun environment to help Valley youth of all ages and backgrounds reach the power of their potential.

The nonprofit organization offers more than 100 youth development programs at the organization’s nine branches and 12 outreach sites located in Scottsdale, Phoenix, Mesa, Fountain Hills and the Salt River Pima-Maricopa and Hualapai Indian Communities.

What are the Club’s Values?

  • Accountability
  • Integrity
  • Leadership
  • Respect
  • Teamwork

In addition, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale believes these values need to be evident with our volunteers and community partners.

What are some of the programs kids love best?

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale offers more than 100 quality youth development programs designed to develop character and life-enhancing skills.

Programs are built around five core areas: the arts; character and leadership development; education and career development; health and life skills; and sports, fitness and recreation.

Some of our members’ favorite programs include:

  • National Fine Arts Exhibit:
    • This competition, which encourages creativity through a variety of media, is made up of local, regional and national exhibits.
    • Young people are encouraged to create artwork in any of the following categories: monochromatic drawing, multicolored drawing, pastels, water color, oil or acrylic, print making, mixed media, collage and sculpture.
    • The program culminates in an organization-wide exhibit with winners advancing to the regional, and then possibly, nationally to the annual Boys & Girls Clubs of America national conference held in the spring.
  • Leaders in Training (L.I.T.): The L.I.T. program is designed to enhance the professional development of Club members ages 13 to 17 by giving them opportunities to learn leadership skills and responsibility. The mission of the program is to provide Club members an understanding of the Boys & Girls Club movement, work ethics, personal skills and community responsibility.
  • America Reads/America Counts: Through a partnership with Arizona State University, the Club provides the America Reads/America Counts education program at three of our locations: Hartley & Ruth Barker Branch, Lehi Branch and the Paiute Neighborhood Center (part of our Outreach Services).
  • SMART Girls: The SMART Girls Program addresses social and development needs of girls ages 8 to 15. The goal of the program is to develop healthy attitudes and lifestyles at this critical stage of their development. SMART Girls aims to provide knowledge, skills, self-esteem and peer support to help young girls avoid the use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs; learn the importance of healthy eating and fitness habits; develop an understanding and appreciation of their bodies and the physical, emotional and social changes they are experiencing; and to postpone sexual activity.
  • Passport to Manhood: The Passport to Manhood program is aimed at making the transition from boyhood to manhood a positive and healthy one. It helps young adolescent males understand and manage such things as physical changes in their bodies; relationships with authority, friends and members of the opposite sex; greater freedom and responsibility for personal decisions; and increase peer pressure. The program consists of 14 sessions, each of which concentrates on a specific aspect of manhood through highly interactive activities.
  • Triple Play: A Game Plan for the Mind, Body and Soul: Triple Play is a dynamic wellness program currently being offered at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale that demonstrates how eating right, keeping fit and forming positive relationships add up to a healthy lifestyle. The goal of the Triple Play program is to improve Club members’ knowledge of healthy habits, increase the number of hours per day they participate in physical activities and strengthen their ability to interact positively with others and engage in positive relationships. Program components include healthy habits nutrition curriculum, daily challenges, sports clubs, triple play games and social recreation.

The Club also offers an amazing array of sports programs, clinics, movie-making and Web design classes and much more.

What is the Club’s Impact?

Youth who attend a Club more than 75 percent of the time have an average GPA of 3.19.
Fifty-seven percent of elementary age youth say the Clubs help them like school better.

Because of the Clubs, 63 percent of middle school youth say they exercise and eat healthy.
Eighty-eight percent of high school youth say the Clubs help influence them to better the community.

For more information about the Boys & Girls Clubs Of Greater Scottsdale, visit bgcs.org.

cervical cancer

Cervical Cancer: Prevention & Treatment

According to the American Cancer Society, there will be more than 12,000 new cases of cervical cancer diagnosed this year in the United States alone, making it the third most common cancer in women. The disease forms slowly, but has very few symptoms in early stages. Every January, we observe Cervical Cancer Awareness Month to help educate Arizona women about the disease and risk factors leading to it.

Below is a Q&A session with two leaders in cervical cancer screening, treatment and research: Dr. Luci Chen, Arizona Center for Cancer Care, and Carol Bafaloukos, Planned Parenthood Arizona.

Q: What is cervical cancer?

Chen: Cervical cancer is slow-forming, initially an almost symptomless cancer that starts in a woman’s cervix, which is the opening that connects the uterus to the birth canal.

Q: Who gets cervical cancer?

Chen: Cervical cancer isn’t picky — when it comes to women, at least. It can occur in ANY women, most often after the age of 30.

Q. What is the MAIN CAUSE of cervical cancer?

Bafaloukos: Far and away, human papillomavirus (HPV) — one of the most common sexually transmitted infections in the United States. It is estimated that more than half of adults will get HPV. There are 120 different types of HPV, more than 30 of which can infect the genitals. It is estimated more than 70 percent of cervical cancer cases stem from HPV.

Q. Are there other causes?

Chen: HIV and smoking are also linked to the disease.

Q. What are the symptoms of the disease?

Chen: In early stages, there aren’t any. That is why it is so critical to get regular Pap tests, which can detect the disease in its earliest forms. As the disease progresses, symptoms can include abnormal vaginal bleeding, unusually heavy vaginal discharge, painful intercourse or urination.

Q. 
What are the screening tests available for HPV and cervical cancer?

Bafaloukos: The obvious test is the Pap smear, which should be done annually starting no later than age 21. Through the Pap, the doctor can look at the cells on the cervix and detect even slight changes. Another test is the actual HPV test.

Chen: If a doctor finds any of the above suspicious, other tests, including a biopsy and colonoscopy, can be used can help determine if the woman has cervical cancer. It is very important to know the extent of the cancer — how deeply it has invaded tissues. The treatment can be quite different depending upon this.

Q. How can one reduce her risk of cervical cancer?

Bafaloukos: By reducing your risk of HPV. This can be done by getting the HPV vaccine, ensuring annual Pap smears, limiting your number of sexual partners, using condoms and quitting smoking.

Q. What are the treatments options for cervical cancer?

Chen: Often, the treatment is surgery, coupled with radiation. Chemotherapy is often used as well.

For more information on cervical cancer, screenings available and even HPV treatment options at reduced rates and free, please visit ppaz.org.

champagne

Picking The Perfect Champagne For New Year's Eve: Brand And Venue Picks

New Year’s Eve, the one time of year that our wine glasses sparkle as brightly our winter wardrobes.

But how does one choose the best champagne or sparkling wine to enjoy during this, the fizziest of holiday seasons?

“Simply put, one must decide how much of a brut he/she wants in order to determine the best bottle for his/her taste buds,” says Douglas Wooster, market manager of Moet Hennessey in Arizona.

According to Wooster, when it comes to champagne and sparkling wines, the term “brut” refers to how much sugar is contained in the bottle. The least-sweet bottles, generally the most popular among males, are generally those labeled as “brut,” “extra brut” and “brut zero.” For sweeter options, look for the terms “extra dry,” “dulce,” “sec” or “semi-sec.”

If shopping by brand, the below guide is a best bet for good bubbles; and all are available at any local AJ’s or Total Wine & More:

Moët & Chandon
World’s leading champagne house since 1743. The quality of the wines starts with the 2,840 acres of sweeping estates, offering unparalleled access to the finest grapes that the champagne region has to offer.
Retail: $40 – $85

Veuve Clicquot
For more than 230 years, the brand’s stayed true to its motto: “Only one quality, the finest.”
Retail: $50 – $180

Krug
Visionary Founder Joseph Krug understood the essence of champagne is pleasure itself.
Retail: $170 – $225

Dom Pérignon
Precise and tactile to the point of seamlessness; tense through rhythm and vibrancy; vigorous and fresh yet mature; intense and complex.
Retail: $150 – $200

If shopping for the best venues to enjoy a bottle or two of champagne this holiday season, below are two best bets:

  • Lon’s at Hermosa Inn’s Mumm & Perrier-Jouet Wine Dinner on December 27th, hermosainn.com
  • Champagne New Year’s Eve at Hotel Valley Ho on December 31st, hotelvalleyho.com

And, if you would rather try your hand at eating your champagne wishes and caviar dreams this New Year’s, be sure to check out Scottsdale’s own Melting Pot, which is incorporating a “champagne cooking style” into its holiday menu as well as pairing its signature fondues with a bevy of rich champagnes and sparkling wines.

“We are marrying rich Fontina and Butterkäse cheeses with buttermilk bleu cheese, shallots, scallions and fresh-cracked black pepper to the champagne on New Year’s Eve only for the ultimate sparkling take on our classic Wisconsin Trio,” says Aaron Marion, a spokesperson for the Melting Pot.

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Brubacher is fueled for success

Joan Brubacher is a gas.

Well, she knows gas – and how to account for it.

“Growing up in Kansas, my dad was a fuel distributor,” said Brubacher, chief financial officer for Resolute Commercial Services, a Scottsdale-based receivership and corporate renewal firm,. “He also loved math, just like me.”

At only 14, number-loving Brubacher was working as her father’s bookkeeper. By college, the self-proclaimed tech geek would choose to crunch numbers for life, earning an accounting degree from Kansas State University.

Recruited by Ernst & Whinney (now Ernst & Young) out of college, gas would continue to drive Brubacher – one of her first audit clients was a convenience store and fuel distributor.

And it wouldn’t be her last.

After putting in her time with the Big Four – and getting married – Brubacher joined her father in the family business as its CFO.

“My father, husband and I decided to grow the business together,” said Brubacher. “In less than a decade, we grew from one to 19 locations statewide.”

Eventually, however, Arizona would come calling when her husband decided to take a great business opportunity in the Valley in 1989. For the first time since she was 14, Brubacher had nothing to account for except her husband and two young daughters.

Embracing her inner tech geek, she eventually earned CFO positions with several high-tech companies over the next two decades. One company – iGo – she would help take public in the 2000s. While working on the IPO, she became friendly with colleague Jerry Foster.

“He was a staunch supporter of the community – and his passion was contagious,” said Brubacher.

Before she knew it, she had joined Foster as a member of the board of directors for Junior Achievement of Arizona as well as branched out on her own, volunteering on the board with and serving on several committees for the Fresh Start Women’s Foundation and Financial Executives International, among others.

And after the IPO, Foster had other plans for her as well.

“Jerry had co-founded Resolute Commercial Services in 2008 as a receivership organization assisting businesses with complicated debt and other issues in the midst of the recession,” said Brubacher.

She joined Resolute as CFO in 2009 and has helped expand the firm into California, Nevada and Texas. Most recently, she has also helped drive the business in another direction.

“Often, receivership can be avoided if we can get in and help a business early enough,” said Brubacher, who has spearheaded this proactive approach over the past year on behalf of lenders and debtors alike.

Among her biggest clients – convenience stores and gas stations, of course. She has assisted more than 30 locations nationwide already in addition to physician practices, car washes and construction businesses, among others.  Brubacher finds that her background in finance and operations makes her uniquely qualified to assist businesses with their operational and financial issues, regardless of the industry.

“Life really does come full circle,” said Brubacher.

sugar

The (Too) Sweet Life: Can Sugar Lead to Heart Attack, Cancer?

Life is sweet.

But is too much sweetness in one’s life dangerous?

According to 60 Minutes’ Dr. Sanjay Gupta, sweets – sugar to be exact – may very well be toxic.

In a recent report, Dr. Gupta reported that according to estimates, nearly 20 percent of the total calories in American diets comes from added sugar via soda, energy drinks, sports drinks, desserts, fruit drinks, ice cream and other candies.

“Unfortunately, the sweeter the item is on the lips, the worse it is on the hips,” says Dr. Coral Quiet of Arizona Breast Cancer Specialists. “And, while sweets increase fat and caloric content, they are often void of necessary nutrients and antioxidants.”

And, apparently, that is only the beginning.

Heart Disease

According to Dr. Gupta, just one sugar-sweetened soda a day can sharply increase one’s risk for heart disease.

Some stories, such as an analysis recently published in the New York Times, report that these sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks and alcoholic beverages can increase one’s risk for heart attack by more than 20 percent.

This would stand to reason as sugar can adversely change levels of good and bad cholesterols as well as increase levels of dangerous triglycerides.

So, if one simply eliminates sugary beverages from his/her diet, then she will be fine, right?

Wrong.

In addition to soda, secret sugars in food we eat each day – primarily processed foods – are acting as toxins in our body, too. This can include everything from yogurts to sauces to breads and peanut butters.

Cancer

“I truly believe that sugar is a leading cause of cancer in the United States,” Dr. Quiet says.
According to Dr. Quiet, the word “cancer” is actually the general name given to some 100-plus diseases from breast cancer to lung cancer to skin cancer and is when cells in a specific part of the body begin to grow out of control, causing a tumor.

“Most people don’t know that nearly a third of all cancerous tumors have insulin receptors on their surface that have learned to use sugar to progress,” Dr. Quiet adds.

Backing her assertion, Dr. Gupta reports that over the years, tumors with insulin receptors — like breast and colon cancers — have begun to bind with sugars in the bloodstream, stealing it from muscles and other organs signaling for it as well.

Just as other parts of our bodies use sugar for energy, so do the tumors.

The problem has become so evident that researchers are currently working around the clock on a new suite of drugs specifically meant to block tumors from hijacking sugar and glucose in the bloodstream.

The bottom line

“Until research catches up with the sweet tooth, all individuals, whether currently fighting cancer or not, need to focus on decreasing their processed food intake along with red meats, high-fat dairy products and fried foods,” Dr. Quiet says.