Author Archives: AZ Business Magazine

AZ Business Magazine

About AZ Business Magazine

Over the past two-and-a-half decades, Arizona Business Magazine has grown to encompass not just Arizona Business Magazine, but also a whole host of other publications and signature events. Arizona Business Magazine is the state’s leading monthly business publication. Published by AZ Big Media, the magazine covers a wide-range of topics focusing on the Arizona business scene, and is aimed at high-level corporate executives and business owners.


Ryley Carlock & Applewhite Elects 3 Shareholders

Ryley Carlock & Applewhite announced that Jessica A. Benford, Darrell S. Husband and Andy M. Kvesic have been elected as shareholders in the firm.

Benford counsels clients on a wide variety of corporate matters, including formation and governance, capital raising strategies, private placements, and mergers, acquisitions and other business combination transactions. She received her J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School in 2006.‎

Husband represents and advises financial institutions, regional banks, private lenders, developers, builders and various other business entities and individuals in a wide variety of financial, corporate and real estate transactions. He received his J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law in 2002.

Kvesic focuses on complex commercial litigation and includes prosecuting and defending civil claims related to real estate disputes, business torts, loan fraud, securities fraud, lender liability, class actions, and bankruptcy. He received his J.D. from the University of San Diego School of Law in 2006.

Arizona's 2014 Top Lawyers

Top Lawyers List 2014: Bankruptcy / Reorganization

Az Business Magazine’s 2014 top lawyer list was created after the editorial department asked Arizona law firms to nominate their two best attorneys from more than 20 different categories for consideration. Those nominees were vetted and considered by a panel made of the editorial team and industry experts to determine the exclusive 2014 Az Business Magazine Top Lawyers List.

Steven N. Berger
Steven N. Berger
Engelman Berger, P.C.
Company Website
Berger is focused on resolution of complex business disputes through effective representation of clients in bankruptcy or other reorganization proceedings, loan workouts, litigation and business transactions.

John R. Clemency
John R. Clemency
Gallagher & Kennedy
Company Website
Clemency is an Arizona State Bar Certified Commercial Bankruptcy Specialist with expertise across diverse industries assisting lenders, borrowers, secured and unsecured creditors, fiduciaries and asset buyers. Keen negotiator with courtroom experience in bankruptcy courts across the United States.

John J. Fries
John J. Fries
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
Company Website
Fries is a certified bankruptcy specialist recognized by the Arizona State Bar and American Board of Certification and regularly represents fi ancial institutions, businesses, trustees and creditors’ committees in complex bankruptcy cases and workouts.

John (Jack) J. Hebert
John (Jack) J. Hebert
Company Website
Hebert is a nationally recognized leader in bankruptcy and insolvency law. For over 35 years he has represented trustees and receivers in insolvency proceedings and several large banks on their workout and bankruptcy files.

Thomas J. Salerno
Thomas J. Salerno
Squire Sanders
Company Website
Salerno co-chairs the firm’s international financial restructuring practice. He has extensive experience representing distressed companies, acquirers and creditors in financial restructuring and bankruptcy proceedings, pre- and post-bankruptcy workouts and corporate recapitalizations.

Susan Boswell
Susan Boswell
Quarles & Brady LLP
Company Website
Named among the “Top 50 Attorney in Arizona” by Southwest Super Lawyers, Boswell brings more than 30 years expertise to her national bankruptcy and reorganization practice, representing both creditors and debtors.

Susan Freeman
Susan Freeman
Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP
Company Website
Freeman is a partner who concentrates her practice on business bankruptcy and on appeals of all kinds. With experience serving as individual counsel and as co-counsel, she helps in all aspects of business bankruptcy.

Daniel E. Garrison
Daniel E. Garrison
Managing member
Andante Law Group
Company Website
Garrison has almost two decades of corporate restructuring, business bankruptcy and related experience with troubled business in the real estate development, retail, manufacturing, health care, telecommunications, construction, agricultural, mining, airline, and high-tech industries.

Randy Nussbaum
Randy Nussbaum
Founding shareholder
Nussbaum Gillis & Dinner, P.C.
Company Website
Nussbaum’s 33 years of zealous advocacy in sophisticated, complex bankruptcy and insolvency cases has earned him high distinction nationally and locally and numerous peer-review awards. Nussbaum’s passion for the law is matched by his commitment to the Scottsdale community, his home for more than 50 years.

Lawrence E. Wilk
Lawrence E. Wilk
Jaburg Wilk
Company Website
Wilk has more than 33 years’ experience handling significant bankruptcy cases on behalf of trustees, creditors and debtors. Achievements include adjunct professor at ASU’s College of Law, Southwest Super Lawyer, Arizona’s Top Lawyers, rated AV Preeminent from Martindale-Hubbell and a Master in the Arizona Bankruptcy Inn of Court.


2014 Ranking Arizona Platinum Hall of Fame Inductees

On April 03, the 2014 Best of the Best Awards celebration was held at The Venue of Scottsdale where Ranking Arizona recognized the companies that Arizona’s public ranked as their favorites to do business with.

Congratulations to the 2014 Ranking Arizona Platinum Hall of Fame inductees:

Brycon Construction

Category: Manufacturing/Technology: Cleanroom Design
Principal(s): Bryant W. Lemon Sr., Bill Lemon, Peggy S. Lemmon

Core Construction, Inc.

Category: Contractors: General, 46-99 staff
Principal: Jim Jacobs

Health Net of Arizona Inc.

Category: Healthcare: HMO’s
Principal: Rose Megian, President & CEO


Mukai Greenlee & Company P.C.

Category: 7-15 CPA’s
Principal(s): Louie A. Mukai, Patrick W. Greenlee


Southwestern Business Financing Corp.

Category: Finance/Professional: SBA Lenders
Principal: Teresa Mandelin

Speedie & Associates, Inc.

Category: Geo Material Testing
Principal(s): Gregg A. Creaser, Brett P. Creaser, Donald L. Cornelson

Sun Eagle Corporation

Category: Contractors: General, 45 staff or fewer
Principal(s): Martin Alvarez Sr., Martin Alvarez Jr., John Alvarez

Wist Office Products

Category: Business Services – Office: Supply
Principal(s): Robert Wist, Ian Wist

Wolff Mechanical Inc.

Category: Real Estate Residential: Air Conditioning/Heating Companies
Principal(s): Martin Wolff, Lisa Wolff

Pictures from the 2014 Best of the Best Awards celebration:

AZ Business Magazine March/April 2014

Gerald Green, P.J. Tucker

Fulton Homes Presents $76,500 to Suns Charities

Monday night just before tip-off of the Phoenix Suns-Memphis Grizzlies game, Fulton Homes Vice President Dennis Webb presented a $76,500 check to Suns Charities for the season-long “Proud to Own the 3-Point Zone” program. Throughout the season the Tempe-based homebuilder paid $100 each time a Suns player drained a three-point shot. Monies collected will go to support the U.S. Navy League, an organization that serves and supports all sea services of the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and Merchant Marines, the Joe Foss Institute and the Central Arizona Mountain Rescue Association (CAMRA).

For more than ten years Fulton Homes has partnered with the Suns to give back to a wide variety of charitable organizations. Last year through the 3-Point Zone program Fulton Homes donated $46,000, which was shared with the Youth Assistance Foundation and CAMRA.

“Fulton Homes is happy that the great success the Suns had this season will benefit the U.S. Navy League, the Joe Foss Institute and CAMRA,” said Fulton Homes CEO Doug Fulton. “Fulton Homes is dedicated to giving back to a community that has given so much to our family throughout the years.”

Arizona's 2014 Top Lawyers

Top Lawyers List 2014: Banking

Az Business Magazine’s 2014 top lawyer list was created after the editorial department asked Arizona law firms to nominate their two best attorneys from more than 20 different categories for consideration. Those nominees were vetted and considered by a panel made of the editorial team and industry experts to determine the exclusive 2014 Az Business Magazine Top Lawyers List.

Mark S. Bosco
Mark S. Bosco
Tiffany & Bosco
Company Website
Bosco has established one of the largest, most qualified banking, financial services, foreclosure (trustee sales), bankruptcy, forcible detainer, mediation and REO practices in the nation. His practice includes all banking and real estate related litigation.

Stanly D. Mabbitt
Stanley D. Mabbitt
Of counsel
Ballard Spahr LLP
Company Website
Mabbitt counsels financial institutions and other consumer financial services providers on compliance with state and federal law and implementation of lending programs. He has worked at the Federal Reserve and at one of the nation’s largest banks.

James E. Brophy
James E. Brophy
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
Company Website
Brophy is experienced in insurance and banking law, including the formation and licensing of insurance and reinsurance companies and banks and providing counseling concerning the regulation of banks and insurance companies. He has been recognized in Best Lawyers in America® for 2005-2012.

Robert J. Novak
Robert J. Novak
Jennings, Strouss & Salmon, PLC
Company Website
Novak assists banks, private and public, officers, directors, and shareholders in issues from regulatory compliances, dispute resolution, deal structures, bankruptcy issues and related matters.

Tia Cottey
Tia Cottey
Bryan Cave LLP
Company Website
Cottey’s practice emphasizes all aspects of real estate finance and real estate capital markets, including the representation of lenders, commercial mortgage loan servicers, special servicers, participants, and co-lenders.

Mathew Mehr
Matthew Mehr
Quarles & Brady LLP
Company Website
Martindale-Hubbell AV® Peer Review Rated and honored annually since 2006 by The Best Lawyers in America, Mehr focuses in the areas of real estate, commercial and tax- exempt finance.

Erick Durlach
Erick Durlach
Renaud Cook Drury Mesaros, PA
Company Website
Durlach handles a broad range of commercial litigation, including banking matters, business torts, and contract disputes arising out of a variety of contexts, such as construction and employment agreements.

Julie Rystad
Julie Rystad
Gallagher & Kennedy
Company Website
Rystad represents parties in various commercial finance transactions, including asset-based, equipment, and real estate loans and leases. In addition to structuring, negotiating and documenting client transactions, she advises clients in workouts and restructuring distressed loans.

Brent Gardner
Brent Gardner
Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP
Company Website
Gardner is a partner in the firm’s Finance and Bankruptcy group. For more than 28 years, he has represented lenders in major bankruptcy cases and in workouts of commercial and real estate- based loans.

Jeffrey Verbin
Jeffrey Verbin
Greenberg Traurig
Company Website
Verbin brings more than 30 years of legal experience to his clients in the financial services, real estate and sports and entertainment industries. He has represented investors and new ownership groups in sports facility and hotel acquisitions and franchisors in multi-state financing transactions.

Anchors color

Quarles & Brady Earns PHX Renews Corporate Partner Award

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced that it has been selected to be the recipient of a “PHX Renews Corporate Partner” award from Keep Phoenix Beautiful for its pro bono work on the PHX Renews and Keep Phoenix Beautiful projects.

The award recognizes an organization for its dedication, leadership and passion for PHX Renews and Keep Phoenix Beautiful. Quarles & Brady and especially Sarah R. Anchors, an attorney in the firm’s Phoenix office and a member of the Keep Phoenix Beautiful board, have been instrumental in moving the project forward and making a fundamental change to an important high-profile vacant lots in central Phoenix and surrounding communities. The firm will be honored at the awards program on April 10 in Phoenix.

“It has been a pleasure to work with Keep Phoenix Beautiful for the past few years,” said Anchors. “They have been doing incredibly important work, sustaining a city to be proud of.”

Arizona State University student team members Haylee Hilgers, right, and Jason Hyacinthe won the EMC Green Data Center Challenge at the Avnet Tech Games.

Avnet Tech Games Winners Announced

Avnet, Inc., a leading global technology distributor, announced the 2014 winners of the Avnet Tech Games. Close to 200 students from Arizona community colleges and universities competed head-to-head for top honors in the Avnet Tech Games Arizona onsite competition on Saturday, April 12, 2014, at The University of Advancing Technology in Tempe. In addition, college students competing on a national level in the Spring Virtual Avnet Tech Games had their work displayed and winners were announced during the awards ceremony at the onsite competition. Thirty winning students collected $1,000 each in scholarship money.

A panel of judges including technology executives, engineers and other business leaders selected the winners based on the students’ ability to meet the technical requirements of a task, apply innovative approaches to the solution and demonstrate professional skills. Nearly 76 teams of students competed in the onsite and virtual Avnet Tech Games, including 8 Arizona community colleges and universities: Arizona State University, ITT Technical Institute, seven Maricopa County Community Colleges, Northern Arizona University, The University of Advancing Technology and University of Arizona.

The winners of the 2014 Onsite Avnet Tech Games are:

Cisco Networking Expert Battle
South Mountain Community College
Faculty Coach: Tom Polliard
Student Team Members: Huy Mai and Justin Woys

Desktop Domination
The University of Advancing Technology
Student Team Members: William Hartman and Kelly Stahlberg

Digital Design Dilemma
Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Faculty Coach: Bassam Matar
Student Team Members: Michelle Smekal, Niccolo Horvath and Neel Mistry

EMC Green Data Center Challenge
Arizona State University
Student Team Members: Haylee Hilgers and Jason Hyacinthe

HP Build the Fastest Computer
Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Faculty Coach: Eli Chmouni
Student Team Members: Troy Gerloff, Blake Knoll and Jeremy Morgan

Java Blitz
Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Faculty Coach: Rameen Kaliqu
Student Team Members: Zachary Peshke, Samuel Slater and Larry Standage

Robot Race Obstacle Course
Mesa Community College
Faculty Coach: Bruce Carlton
Student Team Members: Richard Dale, Spencer Hall and Federico Ortega

Solar Scrimmage
Mesa Community College
Faculty Coach: Bruce Carlton
Student Team Members: Justin Arispe, Drew Carlson and Jennifer Hooker

Since the inception of the Avnet Tech Games in 2006, nearly $300,000 in scholarship money and prizes have been awarded to hundreds of the approximately 2,680 students and 215 faculty members who have participated in the competitions.

“The Avnet Tech Games provide a great opportunity for students to test their technical and strategy skills by applying what they have learned in the classroom to real-life scenarios,” said Joal Redmond, vice president of public relations for Avnet, Inc. “Students also had the opportunity to improve their communications skills by participating in a networking workshop and then practice those skills by meeting with Avnet and sponsor executives during a networking hour. Students win, schools win and business wins with the Avnet Tech Games.”

The annual multidisciplinary technology competition, composed of eight separate events, required students to work in teams to test their knowledge, creativity, decision-making, problem-solving and technical skills. During the event, students showcased how they can make a difference in advancing business and improving quality of life by participating in competitions such as creating a solar-powered water-pumping system, racing to build a computer using refurbished parts and troubleshoot issues in the Windows 7 operating system.

2014 Spring Virtual Avnet Tech Games
The Virtual Avnet Tech Games were introduced in 2010 to expand the breadth of the onsite event by allowing students to compete on a national level. More than 115 teams competed in the Virtual Avnet Tech Games competition. The winners were:

Android App™ Showdown
ITT Technical Institute
Student Team Member: Bryan Geesey

Green Video Competition
Chandler-Gilbert Community College
Faculty Coach: Eli Chmouni
Student Team Members: Dustin Allen, Kendra Charnick, Joel Parker and Brian Weeks

JDA Supply Chain Challenge
Southern Methodist University
Student Team Members: Aaron Barnard, Matt Mulholland, Tushar Solanki and Meredith Titus

“Congratulations to everyone who participated in this year’s virtual and onsite Avnet Tech Games, especially our winners,” added Redmond. On behalf of Avnet, thank you to all of our sponsors, business partners and volunteers for helping to make this year’s event a success.”

Avnet Tech Games 2014 sponsors included signature sponsors CA, Cisco, CDW, Datalink, DPAIR, EMC, HP, JDA, Kyocera, Microchip, Nimble Storage and Sungard.

Dr Susan M Pepin

Piper Charitable Trust Announces New President & CEO

The Board of Trustees of Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust announced today that Dr. Susan M. Pepin, nationally recognized medical educator, clinician, and researcher, will become the next president and CEO of Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust, effective July 28, 2014.

Dr. Pepin currently serves as Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion and Associate Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics at Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth. Recognized for her work to diversify the student body in the medical school and as a leader in the field of neuro-ophthalmology, she holds a B.A. from Yale University, B.A. and M.A. from University of Oxford, and M.D. from University of California, San Francisco. In June she will receive a Master of Public Health from the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice. She is a former Rhodes Scholar.

“We believe Dr. Pepin’s lifelong commitment to serve others in fields ranging from healthcare to education to culture makes her the ideal leader for Piper Trust,” said Jim Bruner, chair of the search, on behalf of his fellow Trustees.

”I am truly honored to be a part of Piper Charitable Trust’s work with nonprofit partners to positively impact the health and quality of life in Maricopa County,” said Pepin.

In addition to her extensive contributions in neuro-ophthalmology and her leadership in support of women in medicine, she is actively engaged in community service. She serves on the board of directors of Camerata New England, the board of trustees of the Hitchcock Foundation, and the steering committee of the Upper Valley United Way. She is also regional coordinator of the Association of Rhodes Scholars. Previously she served as a rape crisis counselor and a crisis/suicide intervention counselor.

“Sue Pepin is the ideal leader for a foundation committed to understanding a variety of challenges and opportunities facing our community,” said Judy Jolley Mohraz, retiring president and CEO. “She is compassionate, smart, and a quick study with amazingly broad ranging interests and expertise.”

Dr. Pepin is married to Anthony Dietz, an engineer and entrepreneur, and is the mother of five daughters.


5 Tips to Prepare for Annual Review

For some professionals, it’s that time of year again: annual review season. While some may think of it as a chore, others choose to view the performance review as an important event worthy of significant thought and preparation. Guess which approach is better for your career?

Here are five tips from the experts at Robert Half International for making the most of your annual review:

1. Highlight your most notable accomplishments. Don’t assume that your boss has kept track of all your achievements. Compile a list of key contributions you’ve made in the past year and bring them with you to the meeting.

2. Quantify your contributions. Don’t just cite your successes; link them to the positive effects they’ve had on your company. Did you identify a new solution that saved your employer money? Did you increase your output despite taking on the duties of a colleague out on leave? Reflect upon your biggest accomplishments ­– and document them in detail.

3. Be optimistic yet realistic. Your hope is that your hard work will lead to a bonus and salary increase. It might. But don’t focus solely on your compensation. If a salary boost isn’t in the cards, remember that flexible work options or changes in responsibilities can boost your job satisfaction too.

4. Explore training options. This is an opportunity to pinpoint potential career growth. Consider asking if your employer will pay for some training opportunities. Have ready a list of conferences or classes that will help you build the skills you need to advance your career.

5. Don’t fear feedback. Rare is the employee who receives a perfect review. Be prepared to hear about areas in which you can improve.

Please let me know if I can arrange an interview with a local expert from The Creative Group who can further elaborate on these points.

Arizona's 2014 Top Lawyers

Top Lawyers List 2014: Alternative Dispute Resolution

Az Business Magazine’s 2014 top lawyer list was created after the editorial department asked Arizona law firms to nominate their two best attorneys from more than 20 different categories for consideration. Those nominees were vetted and considered by a panel made of the editorial team and industry experts to determine the exclusive 2014 Az Business Magazine Top Lawyers List.

Sawn K Aiken
Shawn K. Aiken
Aiken Schenk
Company Website
Aiken’s ADR skills are rooted in nearly 30 years of business litigation experience. Named “Lawyer of the Year,” 2012 (Mediation, Phoenix) by Best Lawyers, Aiken ranks among Super Lawyers® “Top 50 Arizona Lawyers” (2009-2013).

Christopher L. Callahan
Christopher L. Callahan
Fennemore Craig
Company Website
Callahan chairs the Business Torts and Personal Injury practice and counsels clients on alternative dispute resolution techniques and participates in arbitration and mediations. He represents business entities addressing toxic torts, insurance coverage and commercial transactions.

Richard A Friedlander
Richard A. Friedlander
Dickinson Wright/Mariscal Weeks PLLC
Company Website
Friedlander is an experienced mediator and arbitrator handling matters throughout the Southwest and has mediated and arbitrated a myriad of disputes involving construction, real property, title and escrow, contracts, bankruptcy, insurance, bad faith,  lender liability, employment and probate issues.

Alisa J. Gray
Alisa J. Gray
Tiffany & Bosco, P.A.
Company Website
Gray’s practice is concentrated in alternative dispute resolution related to probate and trust litigation, elder law and administration. Retained and appointed in complicated class actions involving minors/decedents and as guardian ad litem or dispute resolution master.

Amy L. Lieberman
Amy L. Lieberman
Executive director
Insight Employment Mediation
Company Website
Mediator and arbitrator Lieberman resolves employment litigation, business disputes, executive and workplace conflict. She conducts neutral investigations, and is the author of “Mediation Success: Get it Out, Get it Over, and Get Back to Business.”

Mark A. Nadeau
Mark  A.  Nadeau
Co-managing partner
DLA Piper
Company Website
Nadeau is widely recognized as a leading litigator and commentator on international dispute resolution. He has represented clients in many high-profile disputes involving television, aviation, real estate, hospitality, energy, trade secrets and unfair business practice matters.

Paul Roshka
Paul  Roshka
Founding member
Roshka DeWulf & Patten
Company Website
Roshka is a commercial litigator and mediator who practices regularly before the federal and state courts, the SEC, FINRA and the ACC regarding securities issues and other general business matters.

Tod F. Schleier
Tod. F. Schleier
Schleier Law Offices
Company Website
Schleier’s success as a mediator is due to his experience in representing individuals and employers, as well as a belief that most employment-related disputes should be resolved short of parties expending significant time and resources on a legal battle.

David C. Tierney
David C. Tierney
Sacks Tierney P.A.
Company Website
A veteran litigator and past chair of the State Bar’s ADR section, Tierney is a Best Lawyers selectee (arbitration and mediation) and member of the AAA Commercial and Construction Arbitration and Construction Mediation panels.

Jon Weiss
Jon Weiss
Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP
Company Website
Weiss is an experienced trial and appellate lawyer. As a partner in the firm’s Litigation Group, he has a particular focus in the areas of professional liability, lawyer discipline, and complex business litigation.

Michael Phelps

Phelps will start comeback in Mesa

Michael Phelps is coming out of retirement, the first step toward possibly swimming at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

The 22-time Olympic medalist will compete for the first time since the 2012 London Games at a meet in Mesa on April 24-26.

Bob Bowman, the swimmer’s longtime coach, told The Associated Press on Monday that Phelps is entered in three events — the 50- and 100-meter freestyles and the 100 butterfly.

“I think he’s just going to test the waters a little bit and see how it goes,” Bowman said by phone from Baltimore. “I wouldn’t say it’s a full-fledged comeback.”

Phelps returned to training last fall and re-entered the U.S. drug-testing program. He has completed his six-month waiting period by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to be eligible for competition.

Bowman said Phelps is “pretty far” from being back in top form. He’s been training Monday through Friday with Bowman’s team at the North Baltimore Aquatic Club.

“He’s gotten back into good shape since September,” the coach said. “He can give a good effort and certainly not be embarrassed. He’s in enough shape to swim competitively.”

Besides Phelps, USA Swimming said Olympians Ryan Lochte and Katie Ledecky are among those expected to swim in the Arena Grand Prix at Skyline Aquatic Center.

Phelps turns 29 in June and is the winningest and most decorated athlete in Olympic history. He captured 18 gold medals and 22 medals overall at the last three Summer Games. He broke Mark Spitz’s record for a single Olympics by winning eight gold medals at Beijing in 2008.

Phelps had vowed that he wouldn’t swim into his 30s. Since retiring less than two years ago, he has stayed busy with a chain of swim schools, a foundation focused on water safety and appearances on behalf of his sponsors. He devoted lots of time to golf and participated in a reality show with famed coach Hank Haney.

His camp is being low-key about the comeback.

“I think he’s just really enjoying it,” Bowman said. “He enjoys the training and being physically fit. He just kind of wants to see where he’s at. It’s more really for fun. It’s been nice for me to see him swim just for the joy of it really.”

In Mesa, Phelps will swim 100 free and 100 fly preliminaries on the first day. Then, if he qualifies, he’ll decide which race to swim for the evening finals, Bowman said. He’ll swim the 50 free on the second day and might swim the 50 fly “just for fun,” the coach added.

manufacturing sector expanded

Brewer OKs tax cut law for manufacturers

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday signed into law a bill that eliminates sales taxes on electricity and natural gas purchased by manufacturers and mining smelters, a move she said was needed to make the state more attractive to large businesses.

Brewer signed Senate Bill 1413 at a Capitol ceremony attended by a couple of dozen business leaders, calling it “another smart tax reform that will bolster job creation in Arizona and our competitive edge.”

The tax cut is expected to cost the state general fund at least $17 million a year. Brewer also vetoed money in the state budget designed to help counties make up for the losses, saying their loss was small and would set a bad precedent.

“Since becoming governor, my cornerstone priority has been to make Arizona as attractive as possible for new and expanding businesses, particularly for our manufacturing industry, which generates quality jobs and high-wage salaries,” Brewer said. “I want Arizona to be No. 1 and be the pro-business state in the nation and we have worked relentlessly to accomplish that.”

Later in the day, Brewer also signed a law providing a $5 million tax credit many say is aimed directly at Apple Inc. Senate Bill 1484 grants the tax credit to a company that installs at least $300 million in renewable power capacity to supply its own plant.

The governor touted other tax cuts, regulatory reform and business-friendly policies that she has championed since she took office in 2009. Those tax cuts have affected the state’s revenue, but she said they are important to growing the economy.

“When we bring in these new businesses it drives our economy, they bring in construction jobs, they bring in employees, they bring in money into the state,” she said. “So in the end, everybody’s ship rises.”

Brewer called for the elimination of the tax in her State of the State address in January, saying it was needed to make Arizona more competitive and draw new manufacturing to the state.

The bill received bipartisan support in both legislative chambers, although one conservative Republican in the House of Representatives dissented when it came up for a vote earlier this week.

Rep. Brenda Barton, R-Payson, says the bill places a burden on rural counties that rely on that tax base. She and other rural lawmakers managed to get $1.3 million in the budget to make up for the cuts, but Brewer vetoed that money Friday afternoon.

“I am getting to the point that a lot of these special legislation bills that we are promoting are harming the state of Arizona, and they are harming our rural counties and our rural cities, and I don’t believe we are doing a very good job of doing what’s right for the right reasons,” Barton said during debate earlier in the week. She didn’t immediately return calls seeking comment.

Others defended the bill.

“I think anytime we can support small businesses and reduce their taxes and large businesses and reduce their taxes, and allow them to reinvest in their business and reinvest in the communities and reinvest in their employees, I think we need to be looking for opportunities to do this,” Rep. David Livingston, R-Peoria, said.

Steve Macias, chairman of the Arizona Manufacturer’s Council and the operator of a machine shop that will get a small direct benefit from the tax cut, said it could bring in more manufacturing.

“Seventy percent, 80 percent of the business we do is right here in Arizona,” Macias said of his operation. “And almost all of that is to larger manufacturers, the General Dynamics of the world, the guys who make equipment for the solar industry. So when they attract those guys, I get excited because to me those are all potential customers.”

Glenn Hamer, president of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce & Industry, said 38 other states do not tax electricity use by manufacturers and cutting the tax will help the state.

“These are jobs that pay more than the median wage. They’re jobs that every other state competes for, and we’ve done something significant to make Arizona more competitive today,” Hamer said.

The tax credit bill drew the ire of conservative House Republicans, who said say the bill is unfairly tailored to benefit Apple’s planned Mesa sapphire glass manufacturing plant and picked winners and losers among the state’s industries.

Apple said in November it will open the plant and eventually employ 700 workers to provide material for its iPhone 5 cameras and fingerprint reading sensors.

The tax credit could also be claimed by other companies that build similar facilities. Tesla Motors Inc. is currently looking for a battery plant site and often mentioned as a possible candidate.

“We as conservatives have got to step away from this crony capitalist style of development,” Rep. Adam Kwasman, R-Oro Valley, said during debate on the bill Tuesday. “We cannot afford to pick winners and losers in industry. We believe in low taxes for everybody. We believe in simple rules for everybody.”

But the bill sponsor defended it, saying it was a small amount of money to help establish a large manufacturing operation. The Arizona Commerce Authority helped seal the deal with other incentives.

“I believe that they did the right thing to bring Apple here,” Sen. Bob Worsley, R-Mesa, carried the Apple bill, saying he did it because the Arizona Commerce Authority had made a commitment to the company as part of the deal to draw them here. “And the dollars are very small in the whole scheme of things with Apple being in the Valley. They could have gone to Texas, they could have gone other places and we wanted them here. It’s a good decision.”

Aerospace and defense industry - AZ Business Magazine March/April 2012

Davis-Monthan packs economic impact of $973 million

Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson reports that its operations had an estimated total economic impact of $973 million in the 2013 fiscal year.

That’s down from about $1.14 billion in the 2012 fiscal year.

Including the effect of local military retirees, Davis-Monthan officials say the base pumped $1.47 billion into the Tucson-area economy in fiscal 2013. That total is down from $1.63 billion in fiscal 2012.

More than 10,000 military personnel and civilians worked at Davis-Monthan last year, including more than 7,500 service members and nearly 3,000 civilian employees and contractors.

The annual economic impact released Thursday includes the base’s payroll and spending on equipment, supplies and construction, plus a multiplier to estimate indirect effects like job creation.


APS Plans for More Severe Wildfire Season

Despite drought conditions that could result in a higher than normal amount of wildfires this summer, APS is well-positioned to meet customer demand, company officials told the Arizona Corporation Commission today.

This message was part of APS’s annual summer preparedness briefing to the ACC. The presentation included this summer’s peak demand forecast, an inventory of available resources to serve that demand, a summary of APS’s system improvements, and the steps the company has taken to prepare for wildfires and other potential emergencies.

“With nearly 20,000 miles of overhead power lines around the state, the potential threat of wildfires to our system is very real to us,” said Pat Dinkel, Vice President, Transmission & Distribution Operations for APS. “We’re thinking about wildfires, summer storms and high demand at all times, planning year-round and continually strengthening our system so that our customers can feel confident they’ll be able to keep cool during the hottest days.”

According to the National Interagency Fire Center, conditions caused by a dry winter are expected to result in a rapid increase in wildland fire potential in eastern Arizona beginning in May. Above-normal fire risk is expected for much of the Southwest United States in June and July, the agency said.

APS prepares for the challenges of wildfire season by training its employees to work in close coordination with fire-fighting organizations as the company often is asked to de-energize power lines so fire personnel can work safely within APS rights-of-way. Under normal operating conditions, APS customers should not expect to experience an impact to their service as a result of the company having to temporarily de-energize a major transmission line.

“While we are well-prepared to mitigate the challenges of wildfires to our grid, service interruptions can occur for a variety of reasons – high winds, lightning and other factors,” Dinkel said. “When outages do occur, our number-one priority is safely getting the lights back on and air conditioners running while staying in communication with our customers.”

APS personnel are available 24 hours a day to assist customers and coordinate restoration efforts. In the event of large-scale customer outages, the company utilizes its Twitter feed, @apsFYI, to provide real-time updates to its customers and other key audiences. This summer, APS has forecast a peak of 6,992 megawatts (MW), compared with the 2013 summer peak of 6,927 MW, which occurred on July 8, when the Phoenix high temperature reached 113 degrees. Between its existing generation and its power-supply contracts, APS has 9,186 MW of resources available to help meet summer demand.

The all-time APS system peak of 7,236 MW was set on July 21, 2006. The summer peak – the 15-minute period when APS customers require the most energy – typically occurs in July or August between 5 and 6 p.m.

Last year, APS successfully met peak demand while providing its nearly 1.2 million customers with a level of service reliability that compares favorably with the best performers in the electric utility industry. In 2013, the typical APS customer experienced 0.78 power outages compared to a national industry median of 1.03 interruptions. Also, the typical APS customer experienced 71 minutes of interrupted service in 2013, compared with an industry median of 111 minutes. Both marks place APS within the top quartile of the nation’s investor-owned electric utilities.

The state’s other major electric utilities also made presentations to the ACC.

APS, Arizona’s largest and longest-serving electricity utility, serves nearly 1.2 million customers in 11 of the state’s 15 counties. With headquarters in Phoenix, APS is the principal subsidiary of Pinnacle West Capital Corp.


Weil adds healthy options to UA hospital menu

Dr. Andrew Weil has yet to open one of his True Food Kitchen restaurants in Tucson, but the Arizona Daily Star reports his dishes will now be available at a venue previously unknown for culinary prowess — the hospital.

Weil, a Tucson author and nationally recognized founder of the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, is lending both his name and recipes to the UA Medical Center’s inpatient menu.

Patients staying overnight at the academic medical center, which has two local campuses, will now be able to select healthy gourmet items developed by Weil, such as curried cauliflower soup, Tuscan kale salad and wild salmon with miso, lime and ginger glaze.

The change continues a trend of improving hospital food both locally and nationally away from the stereotype of bland, overcooked meals. In 2006, the UA Medical Center began offering a “room service” menu to patients that includes items like make-your-own omelet, breakfast burrito, pasta or sandwich, among others.

On a national level, more hospitals are employing their own chefs and expanding offerings from standard hospital meatloaf and gelatin desserts.

“As baby boomers have started to age and our customer base has become more demanding, the quality of food has gone up,” said Eric Eisenberg, corporate executive chef at Swedish Health Services, which includes five hospitals in the Seattle area.

“That is really a movement over the last 10 years. People have gone from a clinically focused operation to one that is way more balanced with food quality.”

Eisenberg, a certified executive chef, is part of the national Association for Healthcare Foodservice, which holds Iron Chef-style culinary competitions.

The baby boomers aren’t the only impetus for improving hospital food. There’s a financial incentive, too. As a result of the Affordable Care Act, Medicare reimbursements are based in part on patient satisfaction.

In October, the UA Medical Center added Julie Kennedy Oehlert as the hospital’s new vice president of patient experience.

Kennedy Oehlert, who is a registered nurse, acknowledged that she “stalked” Weil by attending one of his cooking classes, though she isn’t terribly interested in cooking herself.

She attended the class with the UA Medical Center’s food and nutrition services director, Susan Bristol, for the express purpose of persuading Weil to work with the hospital.

“Dr. Weil is a name people know,” Bristol said. “People are more willing to try new foods when it’s a name they recognize.”

The recipes are from Weil’s 2012 cookbook, “True Food: Seasonal, Sustainable, Simple, Pure,” which he co-wrote with business partner and restaurateur Sam Fox and executive chef Michael Stebner. Fox, Stebner and Weil have opened two True Food Kitchens in Phoenix and want to open another restaurant site in Tucson.

Weil focuses on foods that are anti-oxidants and anti-inflammatory, since he says so many serious illnesses are a result of chronic inflammation.

Kennedy Oehlert and Bristol didn’t need to worry about persuading Weil. He was an easy sell. As it turns out, he had approached the hospital about adding healthier food choices a decade ago and said he was stonewalled.

Though the collaboration with the UA Medical Center marks his first time teaming up with a medical facility for a food project, Weil’s interest in improving hospital meals goes back to when he was a fourth-year medical student on hospital rotation and the dining options were typically salty crackers, peanut butter and soda from the vending machine.

“I was amazed and delighted,” Weil said of Kennedy Oehlert’s idea to collaborate.

On March 5, dietetic interns at the UA Medical Center presented several of Weil’s recipes for the hospital cafeteria’s lunch menu. The theme was “Prescribing a Healthier You,” and the event drew thousands of staff members and visitors.

On Tuesday, Weil tasted some of the recipes that had been prepared by the hospital staff and did a cooking demonstration of his Tuscan kale salad, which includes chili flakes, sea salt, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic and bread crumbs.

He also offered Kennedy Oehlert some tips, like removing imitation crab from the cafeteria’s sushi offerings because it is not a healthful ingredient.

The hospital staff tasted items such as Weil’s gluten-free pasta with kale pesto and turkey bolognese with shiitake mushrooms. Executive Chef Steve Martin said Weil offered advice on some of the flavoring, which is sometimes harder to exact when recipes are multiplied for larger volumes.

The hospital plans on adding Weil’s items in the near future, with special inserts in the existing patient menus. The Weil items are options only. Patients can still order more traditional hospital items.

“There will always be red Jell-O at the hospital. There’s a clinical need for it,” Swedish Health’s Eisenberg said. “People who are on clear liquid diets, you’ve got to give them something to chew on. To say we are going to abolish Jell-O isn’t really serving your client base.”


Anderson earns AHA Award of Honor

The American Hospital Association (AHA) will present its 2014 Award of Honor to Rhonda Anderson, R.N., DNSc, chief executive officer, Cardon Children’s Medical Center in Mesa, Ariz. The award, presented on May 5 as part of the AHA’s Annual Membership Meeting, is given to individuals or organizations in recognition of exemplary contributions to the health and well-being of our nation through leadership on major health policy or social initiatives.

Rhonda Anderson, R.N., CEO of Cardon Children's Medical Center

Rhonda Anderson, R.N.
CEO, Cardon Children’s Medical Center

With a rich background as a nursing leader and hospital executive, Anderson is well known as a national leader on quality improvement. She has served as CEO of Cardon Children’s Medical Center since 2009 and previously served in many roles within Banner Health, including pediatric service line administrator; chief nursing officer, senior administrator and chief executive officer at Banner Desert Medical Center; and senior administrator at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center. Prior to joining Banner she also served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Hartford Hospital and vice president of the Hartford Physician Hospital Organization in Harford, Conn.

“Combining her clinical and administrative backgrounds, Rhonda is an asset to all the patients and hospitals through her ongoing leadership in performance improvement,” said AHA President and CEO Rich Umbdenstock. “The AHA is pleased to honor Rhonda in recognition of her long-standing commitment and valuable contributions to improving health and health care.”

She currently serves as AHA’s voice in the Measure Application Partnership, the public-private partnership that reviews performance measures for potential use in federal public reporting and performance-based payment programs, while working to align measures being used in public- and private-sector programs. Anderson served as president of the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) in 1993 through 1994 and was honored with AONE’s Lifetime Achievement Award. She served as an AHA commissioner for nine years and chair of the AHA Committee of Commissioners to The Joint Commission through which she played a key role in shaping quality standards and expectations for hospitals nationwide. She has also been helpful in shaping AHA’s broader approach to performance improvement through her board seat on the Health Research and Educational Trust and on the AHA’s Committee on Research.

In addition, she was a member of the AHA-McKesson Quest for Quality Prize Committee (2001-2004) and a member of the AHA Task Force on Quality/Patient Safety (2001-2002). Anderson’s active participation in AHA also includes serving as an AHA Board member (2010-2012), on the Health Forum Board and as an active Board and committee participant the American Organization of Nurse Executives. Anderson is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing and the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) and was an ACHE Regent representing Arizona.

The Ohio Hospital Association (OHA) also will receive the 2014 AHA Award of Honor for its OHA Energy and Sustainability Program.

Previous Award of Honor winners include organizations such as Reach out and Read, Ronald McDonald House Charities®, the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare, the Center to Advance Palliative Care, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices and Habitat for Humanity. Individuals such as George Halvorson, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Permanente, Steven A. Schroeder, M.D., former president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and Donald M. Berwick, M.D., former administrator of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and former president and CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement have also been honored.


2014 Healthcare Leadership Awards Winners


They are the people we turn to when we need them the most. They help heal our wounds. They mend our children. They have the ability to create happy endings for tragic stories. They impact the communities they serve in ways that few other professions can. They are healthcare leaders.

The editorial department of Az Business magazine scrutinized hundreds of nominations before deciding on the winners and finalists who are recognized with 2014 Healthcare Leadership Awards. We are humbled to honor these amazing men, women and institutions.

Congratulations 2014 Health Care Leadership Award Winners:

Pictures from the 2014 Healthcare Leadership Awards reception:

Photos by Shavon Rose


TGen finds clue to stop spread of lung cancer

Two cell surface receptors might be responsible for the most common form of lung cancer spreading to other parts of the body, according to a study led by the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen).

The hepatocyte growth factor receptor (HGFR/MET) and fibroblast growth factor-inducible 14 (FN14) are proteins associated with the potential spread of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to the TGen study published online April 8 by the scientific journal Clinical & Experimental Metastasis.

NSCLC represents more than 85 percent of all lung cancers, which this year will kill an estimated 159,000 Americans, making it by far the leading cause of cancer-related death. It has a 5-year survival rate less than 10 percent.

The invasive and metastatic nature of NSCLC contributes to this high mortality rate, and so finding the cause of this potential to spread is key to helping patients survive.

Therapies targeting MET and FN14 are in clinical development, which could lead to treatments that could help halt or slow the spread of this lung cancer.

“As the metastatic phenotype is a major cause of lung cancer mortality, understanding and potentially targeting these pathways may reduce the high mortality rate in advanced lung cancer,” said Dr. Timothy Whitsett, an Assistant Professor in TGen’s Cancer and Cell Biology Division, and the study’s lead author.

Significantly, the TGen study found that MET and FN14 were elevated in metastatic tumors compared to primary lung tumors and suppression of MET activation or FN14 expression reduced tumor cell invasion.

“The elevation of these receptors in metastatic disease opens the possibility for therapeutic intervention,” said Dr. Nhan Tran, an Associate Professor in TGen’s Cancer and Cell Biology Division, and the study’s senior author.

Dr. Glen Weiss, Co-Unit Head of TGen’s Lung Cancer Research Laboratory and Director of Clinical Research at Cancer Treatment Centers of America at Western Regional Medical Center, said, “This study identifies some targets that already have drugs in clinical trials, and helps put them into context for what might be a rational drug development approach for the treatment of this deadly cancer.”

Other institutes that assisted with this study are: the University of Arizona; St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center; and Humboldt Medical Specialists.

The study, FN14 expression correlates with MET in NSCLC and promotes MET-driven cell invasion, was funded by the National Institutes of Health, and grants from the St. Joseph’s Foundation and the American Lung Association.


Arizona scores NFL’s 2015 Pro Bowl

The next Pro Bowl will be played in Arizona at the site of the Super Bowl, skipping Hawaii for the first time since 2010.

The game will return to Hawaii in 2016, the NFL announced Wednesday.

The 2015 game will be the third time the Pro Bowl is held in the same city as the Super Bowl. The NFL’s all-star game took place in Los Angeles after the first Super Bowl in 1967, then the two games weren’t in the same city again until South Florida in 2010.

Since 1980, all but one Pro Bowl has been held at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, the college football home of the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors.

The Pro Bowl will remain a week before the Super Bowl, as it has the last five years. The new format introduced after last season, which scrapped the AFC vs. NFC matchup, will be retained. The new format splits the all-stars through a schoolyard-style draft, a setup loosely based on fantasy sports meant to play toward player egos and the changing ways fans are interacting with the game.

The Pro Bowl after this coming season will take place Jan. 25, 2015, at University of Phoenix Stadium. A year later, the game will be held Jan. 31, 2016, at Aloha Stadium.


TGen’s Barrett awarded $200,000 research grant

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) awarded a $200,000 grant today to Dr. Michael Barrett of the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen).

Dr. Barrett, an Associate Professor in TGen’s Clinical Translational Research Division, was one of 14 “outstanding scientists” across the nation named to receive a total of $5 million in grants for pancreatic cancer research.

The grants were announced during the AACR Annual Meeting 2014 in San Diego, April 5-9. With more than 34,000 members, AACR is the world’s oldest and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research.

Specifically, Dr. Barrett was one of five scientists to receive a 2014 Pancreatic Cancer Action Network-AACR Innovative Grant, “intended to promote the development and study of novel ideas and approaches in basic, translational, clinical, or epidemiological research that have direct application and relevance to pancreatic cancer.”

Dr. Barrett’s project, “Genomic drivers of therapeutic responses in metastatic disease,” will investigate the molecular underpinnings of how and why pancreatic cancer spreads to other parts of the body.
“The fundamental hypothesis of this application is that distinct clonal tumor populations that arise during the natural history of pancreatic cancer mediate the clinical responses in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer,” Dr. Barrett said.

“The vision of our work is to bring together advanced genome technologies and the clinical resources available through TGen and our various collaborators to make an immediate impact in the lives of patients with pancreatic cancer and other malignancies,” said Dr. Barrett, who also is a consultant with the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center-Arizona.

The grants support research into high-priority areas in an effort to reach the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network’s goal to double pancreatic cancer survival by 2020.

“The most promising science has been selected for funding through a rigorous peer-review process. This year’s grant recipients hail from leading institutions throughout the country and range from early career investigators continuing to build the field of pancreatic cancer leaders to more senior scientists,” said Julie Fleshman, president and CEO of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. “Their collective efforts have the potential to answer important questions that could lead to significant scientific advances for pancreatic cancer, and ultimately improve patient outcomes. We look forward to working with our new grantees and welcoming them to our team.”

Pancreatic cancer annually takes the lives of more than 38,000 Americans, making it the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. A staggering 75 percent of those diagnosed die within the first year, and only 6 percent survive more than five years.

“Pancreatic cancer is among the most deadly of cancers,” said Margaret Foti, Ph.D., M.D. (h.c.), and Chief Executive Officer of AACR. “With death rates steadily climbing over the past decade, more research into pancreatic cancer is urgently needed. The AACR is, therefore, proud to be partnering with the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network to support cutting-edge scientific research projects that have the potential to lead to major breakthroughs in the prevention, detection, and treatment of this devastating disease.”

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, in collaboration with the AACR, introduced the grants program in 2003, and has since awarded 108 research grants totaling more than $22 million to bright and motivated scientists across the country with the goals of developing a pipeline of researchers dedicated to studying the disease, supporting innovative ideas and approaches, and enabling the organization to reach its 2020 goal.

Staci Glass TRB_6267-Edit

Midwestern Appoints New Director of Development

Kathleen H. Goeppinger, Ph.D., President and CEO of Midwestern University, announced a new director on the University’s Glendale Campus.

Staci Glass has been named Director of Development and Alumni Relations for the Glendale Campus. Ms. Glass brings nearly two decades of administrative, planning, fund-raising, and event management experience to Midwestern. Most recently, Ms. Glass served as the Chief Development Officer of Florence Crittenton Services of Arizona; she has also worked in the past for Hacienda HealthCare of Phoenix and the Arizona Osteopathic Medical Association.

Over her professional career, Ms. Glass has been heavily involved in Valley non-profit operations. She has worked with such organizations as the Junior League of Phoenix, Junior Achievement, and Arizona Spina Bifida, and is a past president of the Rotary Club of Phoenix West. She has also volunteered for the Halo Animal Shelter, Child Crisis Center, and the Ronald McDonald House.

“I am both grateful and excited to join the Midwestern University family in supporting the mission of educating tomorrow’s healthcare team and building resources for our students, faculty, and patients,” said Ms. Glass.

In her new role at Midwestern University, Ms. Glass will oversee fundraising and alumni relations for all of the University’s six colleges, including event sponsorship programs, corporate and foundation relations, annual giving, major gifts, donor stewardship, alumni organizations and programs, and grant writing.


Take Charge America introduces counseling program for consumers facing bankruptcy

Consumers facing bankruptcy have a new option for completing the bankruptcy counseling courses required by law. Take Charge America, a national non-profit credit counseling and debt management agency based in Phoenix, now offers bankruptcy counseling to help consumers understand and navigate the complex process of filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 11.

Individuals filing bankruptcy are legally required to complete an individual budget briefing session with an approved, nonprofit budget and credit counseling agency during the 180-day period preceding the date of filing the bankruptcy petition. Once consumers have completed this session and filed their bankruptcy petition, they must complete an approved personal financial management instructional course in order to be eligible for a bankruptcy discharge.

Take Charge America has been approved by the Executive Office for United States Trustees to provide both the bankruptcy counseling and debtor education courses. The agency’s counselors educate consumers on what it means to file for bankruptcy, alternatives they may wish to consider, the nuances of the filing process and the management of future financial goals.

“The economy is improving, but many people are continuing to suffer the ripple effects of a terrible recession,” said Mike Sullivan, chief education and operations officer for Take Charge America. “For some, bankruptcy is the only option, but the process of declaring bankruptcy is very complicated. We help people understand the ins and outs of petitioning for bankruptcy while also providing counseling services to get them back on the road to financial wellbeing.”

Take Charge America offers pre-filing credit counseling and post-filing debtor education online or through audio courses. Consumers who wish to learn more about bankruptcy counseling may visit or call Take Charge America at (866) 750-9634 to speak directly with a counselor.

H:Marketing4-SOQs & ProposalsProposals13-1-7 Peoria Prototyp

W.J. Maloney Plumbing lands new projects

W.J. Maloney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling has landed two west-side school projects, one for the Glendale Union High School District and one for the Peoria Unified School District.

Noted for its work with school districts, including the Phoenix Union High School District and the Paradise Valley Unified School District, W.J. Maloney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling is now working on projects at Greenway High School and the new Sunset Heights Elementary School in Peoria.

At Greenway High School, W.J. Maloney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling is providing the plumbing, wastewater and gas systems for both the new science and band buildings as part of Phase 3 of construction.

Sunset Heights Elementary School will open in August with kindergarten through seventh-grade students. It is the district’s 33rd elementary school. W.J. Maloney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling’s work has included Buildings 1 and 2 totaling nearly 200,000 square feet.
McCarthy Building Companies, Inc. is the general contractor for both of these school projects.

“Our team has strengthened its expertise in public school projects over the last few years,” said Kathryn “Kitty” Maloney-Langmade, president of W.J. Maloney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling.

“Knowing that districts demand the highest quality construction – we take these projects as excellent examples of the type of work we deliver.”

Now celebrating its 50th anniversary, W.J. Maloney Plumbing, Heating & Cooling has been a leading plumbing and HVAC contractor in the greater metropolitan Phoenix area since 1964. Working with many of the state’s largest general contractors, the company has provided exemplary design-build plumbing, from tenant improvement to complex multi-story projects that include many of the most prominent buildings in the Valley.

Additional projects completed include the new Cubs Park in Mesa, the Orthopedic and Spine Inpatient Surgical (OASIS) Hospital in Phoenix, the solar thermal project at the University of Arizona, the Sky Train Project at Sky Harbor International Airport and the Mariposa Land Port of Entry expansion near Nogales.

W.J. Maloney Plumbing also provides extensive commercial and residential service, maintenance and repair, and is Small Business Enterprise (SBE) and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) certified. For more information, call (602) 944-5516 or visit


Stanton, Gallego Work to Close Gender Pay Gap

Mayor Greg Stanton and Councilwoman Kate Gallego announced Tuesday a new effort to ensure that City of Phoenix contractors – those paid with taxpayer dollars – practice equal pay for equal work among men and women.

This morning, on National Equal Pay Day, Stanton asked Gallego to lead an effort over the next few months to draft an equal pay measure that better ensures fair pay in the workplace, and includes mechanisms to enforce the policy.

Across the nation, women are paid 77 cents for every dollar their male counterparts make. Although it trails the District of Columbia in pay equity, Arizona has the smallest pay gap among the 50 states: women earn about 86 percent of what their male counterparts earned. [Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics]

“The fact that women are paid less for the same work as men is a strike at our core values,” said Stanton. “We have a responsibility to do something about it, and we can take the lead in Phoenix by making sure that companies who do business with the city pay equal wages for equal work.”

“We know that when women win, Phoenix will win,” said Gallego. “I look forward to the day when Equal Pay Day will be January 1. Women should no longer have to work more than four additional months to make the same salary that men did last year. I appreciate Mayor Stanton’s leadership on this important issue.”

Later this year, Gallego will present her recommendation for a City Council vote. As a state, Arizona last considered equal pay legislation in the 1970s. [Source: “BLS data: Arizona has lowest gender pay gap among states,” Cronkite News Service, Feb. 1, 2014]

“I applaud the efforts of my colleagues to close the gender wage gap here in Phoenix,” said Councilwoman Laura Pastor. “Especially in District 4, home to many working families and female-headed households, this effort has the potential not only to help women in the workforce, but to truly move our community forward.”

Equal Pay Day aims to raise public awareness about the gap between men’s and women’s wages. The date – April 8 – was selected to represent how long into the year women must work to earn what men made last year.

Over the course of a woman’s career, pay inequality adds up. “A women who worked full time, year round would typically lose $443,360 in a 40-year period due to the wage gap, and have to work 12 years longer than her male counterpart to make up this gap.” [Source: Fifty Years and Counting: The Unfinished Business of Achieving Fair Pay, National Women’s Law Center, 2013]

Wage discrimination harms families. Women are the primary breadwinners in more than 41 percent of families with children, including 8.6 million families across the country headed by single mothers. [Source: National Women’s Law Center]

The gender gap has not closed in nearly a dozen years. Women earned 77 percent of their male counterparts’ earnings in both 2002 and 2013. [Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics]

Minorities experience the most significant pay gap. Hispanic women make 53 percent of what white men make; Native American women make 60 percent; and African-American women make 64 percent. [Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2012 American Community Survey]

There is a gender pay gap in nearly every occupation. A 2014 report from the American Association of University Women found that, “From elementary and middle-school teachers to computer programmers, women are paid less than men in female-dominated, gender-balanced, and male-dominated occupations.”

Education does not close the gender gap. “At every level of academic achievement, women’s median earnings are less than men’s median earnings, and in some cases, the gender gap is larger at higher levels of education.” [Source: The Simple Truth About the Gender Pay Gap, American Association of University Women, 2014]

At all education levels, even after experience is considered, the wage gap gets worse as a woman’s career progresses. “A Bloomberg Businessweek story examined wage gaps within occupations and found that out of 265 major occupations, women’s median salary exceeded men’s in only one occupation – personal care and service workers.” [Source: FAQ About the Wage Gap, National Women’s Law Center, September 2013]

Professional women sometimes experience the most significant pay gap. “Female CEOs earn 69 cents for every dollars earned by their male counterparts, and female lawyers make tens of thousands of dollars less than their male peers.” [Source: Think Progress, Jan. 29, 2013]

Female newspaper editors, for example, earn 79 percent of their male counterparts, and male paralegals earn 11 percent more than women in the same job. [Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics]

The pay gap grows and wage loss accumulates over the course of a woman’s career. “By the time women reach 39, their wage growth pretty much stops altogether.” Wage growth for men continues until age 48. [Source: “Mapping the Glass Ceiling,” New York Times, May 29, 2012].

Women without children experience wage discrimination. Just a year out of college, women make 82 percent of the wage of male peers who do similar work.