Tag Archives: Fennemore Craig

ballet

Lee Elected to Ballet Arizona’s Board of Directors

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announced that T. James Lee, a shareholder and director at Fennemore Craig in the firm’s Phoenix office, has been elected to the Board of Directors for Ballet Arizona.

Lee focuses his practice in the areas of estate planning, charitable giving, and business formation and structuring. He counsels clients on wealth transfer strategies, including the use of revocable trusts, irrevocable life insurance and gifting trusts, family limited partnerships and LLCs, qualified personal residence trusts, grantor retained annuity trusts, installment sales to grantor trusts, and other sophisticated planning techniques. Lee received his J.D. and his B.S. from Brigham Young University.

Ballet Arizona is an innovative and provocative professional ballet company that creates, performs, and teaches outstanding classical and contemporary ballet. The company is dedicated to preserving and celebrating classical dance while creating and commissioning new innovative works.

ballet

Lee Elected to Ballet Arizona's Board of Directors

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announced that T. James Lee, a shareholder and director at Fennemore Craig in the firm’s Phoenix office, has been elected to the Board of Directors for Ballet Arizona.

Lee focuses his practice in the areas of estate planning, charitable giving, and business formation and structuring. He counsels clients on wealth transfer strategies, including the use of revocable trusts, irrevocable life insurance and gifting trusts, family limited partnerships and LLCs, qualified personal residence trusts, grantor retained annuity trusts, installment sales to grantor trusts, and other sophisticated planning techniques. Lee received his J.D. and his B.S. from Brigham Young University.

Ballet Arizona is an innovative and provocative professional ballet company that creates, performs, and teaches outstanding classical and contemporary ballet. The company is dedicated to preserving and celebrating classical dance while creating and commissioning new innovative works.

Go Daddy founder and former CEO Bob Parsons is resigning as executive chairman to spend time on other ventures.

Parsons Acquires Scottsdale-based Martz Agency

Valley entrepreneur and philanthropist Bob Parsons today announced the acquisition of Martz Agency by MP Agency, L.L.C., an organization owned by Parsons. The award-winning Scottsdale based marketing and public relations firm, which will be renamed Martz Parsons, will bring creative firepower to Parsons’ growing portfolio of businesses.

Parsons has said that by looking at and structuring their marketing as a revenue generator that makes money rather than an expense item, businesses are able to not only bring attention to their brand but also increase their revenue streams. Parsons’ numerous Valley based entities, including Harley-Davidson of Scottsdale, Go AZ Motorcycles, Spooky Fast Parts & Engineering, YAM Properties, The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation and Scottsdale National Golf Club, will be using Martz Parsons as their agency of record. The agency will immediately add talent to keep pace with the growth.

Martz Agency, founded by Carrie Martz in 1980, is among the most highly regarded agencies in Arizona. Moving forward, Carrie Martz will assume the title of CEO and the agency will continue to serve its existing clients. Existing and future accounts, including Parsons personal enterprises, will be able to leverage the Agency’s unparalleled talent and newly expanded resources to further develop and empower their brands.

“I am thrilled that someone I consider to be a marketing genius has purchased the Agency,” said Carrie Martz.  “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for our agency and for our clients. With Bob Parsons behind us, I believe our Agency will become even more value to the clients we serve.”

Bob Parsons, like Carrie Martz, is well-known for his intense focus on providing an excellent customer experience. Moving forward, clients can expect their accounts to be managed with the same level of personalized care that Martz Agency has delivered for the last 33 years.

“It’s no secret that I am passionate about marketing,” said Bob Parsons. “The formula is simple … great brands that deliver an uncontested customer experience thrive. Martz Agency brings years of experience, professionalism and enthusiasm to the table. Together, we should knock it out of the park.”

Martz Agency’s current client roster includes Yurbuds, Arizona Commerce Authority, Toronto based Pacific Links International, Valley of the Sun YMCA, Fennemore Craig, RLC Labs, One Neck, Mirabel, The Reef Residences at Atlantis, Estrella by Newland Communities, and Olympia Group.

3333_E_Camelback-Bldg

Colliers International Closes 92,200 SF, $12M Office Building Sale in Phoenix

Colliers International in Greater Phoenix recently negotiated the sale of a 92,233 square-foot Class-A office building located at 3333 E. Camelback Road in Phoenix for $12 million, or $130/square foot.

Fenway Properties of San Diego acquired the property. Fenway plans to upgrade the common areas and develop new, spec suites to accommodate tenants of various square footage requirements.

The seller was Noffsinger Manufacturing Company of Greely, Colo.

Todd Noel, senior vice president; Keith Lambeth, senior vice president; and Ryan Timpani, senior associate; served as the Colliers International in Greater Phoenix brokers for both parties.

“The office building represents a strong investment for Fenway due to the building’s strategic location within the prestigious Camelback Corridor submarket, quality construction and timeless finishes,” Noel said.

Built in 1984, the two-story building comprises multiple suites ranging from 1,214 to 17,930 square feet.

privacy

How Personal Employment Information Is Shared And Sold

In today’s competitive business world, employers constantly are seeking ways to increase efficiency and reduce cost.  One obvious option in this effort is outsourcing, and employers certainly should be free to delegate functions to third-party vendors when it makes sense to do so.  But what are the implications when outsourcing requires an employer to share with a vendor private information about the employer’s workforce?

For attorneys who counsel either businesses or individuals, it’s important to know what rules and limitations apply to the increasingly popular trend of outsourcing employee verification services.  The issues associated with this trend are far-reaching and beg the question:  How can we better regulate and improve this beneficial type of outsourcing, for employers and employees alike?

The key to answering these questions begins with an understanding of the dual role credit reporting agencies play as database sponsors in the employee verification industry.  For example, in addition to compiling consumer credit scores, credit reporting giant Equifax also is in the business of compiling other information that is equally personal; namely, confidential details about workers’ current and former employment.  In fact, Equifax might even be selling information as personal as your compensation level, the name of your healthcare provider, whether you’ve ever filed for unemployment benefits, and your paystub history.

What is “The Work Number”

The Work Number, a subsidiary of Equifax, provides various financial and employment verification services.  The Work Number uses its ever-expanding database to confirm employment and income information for commercial verifiers, social service verifiers, and potential future employers.  The Work Number’s database currently contains the employment and salary records of over one-third of U.S. adults, and it includes detailed employee information about weekly paystubs, healthcare providers, medical and dental insurance, and unemployment compensation claims.

The Work Number built its database with the cooperation of thousands of U.S. businesses.  The Work Number markets itself to these willing participants as a means for busy human resource departments to outsource the time consuming task of verifying a range of information on former and current employees.  This service is so attractive that participating businesses actually pay for the ability to send The Work Number all employee information typically needed in the verification process.  The Work Number fields verification inquiries on the employer’s behalf, freeing up employer staff time for other tasks.

While providing employers with a valuable service, The Work Number simultaneously funnels this information it receives from its clients to its parent company, Equifax.  In turn, Equifax sells the information to third parties such as debt collectors, student loan issuers, and financial institutions.

Although Equifax’s sharing of the personal information garnered by The Work Number under in its role as a verification service provider is indisputable, the extent of such sharing is in question.  In an interview with NBC News, Equifax spokesman Timothy Klein denied that salary information is sold to debt collectors.[i]  Klein’s statement is in conflict, however, with Equifax CEO Richard Smith’s 2009 NYSE Magazine interview, in which he stated “[W]e can provide information about a debtor’s location, income, and employment.  That can help prioritize which accounts to pursue first.”[ii]

Because employer use of The Work Number has become so prevalent, the District of Columbia has issued new guidelines for low-income housing compliance, which include a provision governing the treatment of applicants whose employment and earnings can be verified only via The Work Number.[iii]  Likewise, the current Code of Mississippi Rules actually includes The Work Number’s email address, phone number, and website address in a statutory provision that instructs applicants for State-funded childcare on how to provide income and employment verification.[iv]  Considering The Work Number’s fast-paced growth and the privacy concerns it poses for consumers, it makes sense to consider what safeguards, if any, are in place to protect us.

Fair Credit Reporting Act

The most obvious consumer protection tool implicated by Equifax’s practices is The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).  The FCRA regulates instances in which “consumer reports” or “investigative consumer reports” are requested from a “consumer reporting agency.”[v]  For purposes of the FCRA, a “consumer reporting agency” includes any entity that regularly assembles credit or other information about consumers and furnishes that information to third parties via any means of interstate commerce.[vi]  Thus, Equifax and The Work Number are considered consumer reporting agencies for purposes of the FCRA.  “Consumer reports” include any communication of a consumer’s personal characteristics which will serve as a factor establishing the consumer’s eligibility for credit or insurance or for employment purposes.[vii]  By contrast, “investigative consumer reports” include reports regarding the consumer’s personal characteristics gathered during personal interviews, but do not include specific factual information about the consumer’s credit record.[viii]  Due to the more personal nature of information contained in an investigative consumer report, stricter guidelines are in place regarding disclosure of investigative consumer reports compared to ordinary consumer reports.  To the extent Equifax and The Work Number provide third parties with consumers’ personal and financial information, Equifax and The Work Number furnish consumer reports.

There are three types of recipients of the information provided by Equifax and The Work Number: prospective employers, financial institutions and creditors, and third party purchasers.  The FCRA applies differently to each recipient type.

Prospective Employers

The Work Number markets itself as a means for prospective employers to verify employment information of job applicants.  Thus, as its core business, The Work Number provides sensitive information to prospective employers.  Because the FCRA applies whenever employers request consumer reports from a consumer reporting agency like The Work Number, the FCRA is implicated by The Work Number’s information transfers to prospective employers.

The FCRA addresses issues such as what types of employers can obtain consumer reports, how they must obtain the report, what they must do before taking adverse action in response to the report, and what they must do after taking adverse action.[ix]  The Work Number contends that FCRA guidelines are met when it provides prospective employers with employment information.  Such guidelines include providing job applicants with written notice that information obtained from a consumer report may be used when making decisions concerning their employment.[x]  This notice must appear in a document containing only this disclosure.[xi]  Additionally, the consumer must provide written authorization of the procurement of the report.[xii]  To the extent The Work Number provides employment verification to prospective employers and meets these guidelines, it is within its rights to do so.  What the FCRA fails to address, however, is how other information in The Work Number’s database, such as salary and insurance information, is used for non-employment purposes.

Financial Institutions and Creditors

In addition to providing potential employers with consumers’ employment information, The Work Number also concedes to providing creditors and financial institutions with employment information from its database.  In an interview with NBC News, Equifax spokesman Timothy Klein admitted that pay rate information is shared with third parties.[xiii]  These third parties typically include mortgage, auto, and financial services credit grantors.  Klein said The Work Number provides such information to financial institutions and credit grantors in compliance with the FCRA, but denied that salary information is sold to debt collectors.[xiv]  The Work Number asserts that consumers give such third parties the right to access this information at the time the consumer applies for credit.

Section 1681 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act states that generally, a consumer reporting agency, like Equifax or The Work Number, may only furnish a consumer report to such third parties when the consumer reporting agency has reason to believe the third party “intends to use the information in connection with a credit transaction involving the consumer … and involving the extension of credit to, or review or collection of an account of, the consumer.”[xv]  Even assuming Klein’s assertion is true that consumers grant these third parties access to such information, other provisions in the FCRA raise the question of whether this authorization is sufficient.  Subsection (c)(1)(A) of the FCRA requires that “the consumer authorize[e] the agency to provide such report to such person.”[xvi]  This language suggests that a much more personalized authorization transaction may be required than Klein alluded to in his statement.  Namely, it appears that the consumer must furnish the specific consumer reporting agency in question with authorization to provide the report to the specific financial institution or creditor requesting the report.  Interestingly, although in certain circumstances a consumer may authorize all reporting agencies to give all creditors this information by executing a general waiver at the time he or she applies for credit, another subsection of the FCRA indicates the consumer may have an additional line of defense.  Pursuant to subsection (c)(1)(B)(iii), a consumer may elect to have his name and address excluded from lists provided by consumer reporting agencies in connection with credit transactions not initiated by the consumer.[xvii]

Unfortunately, the rules delineating when reporting agencies like Equifax and The Work Number can give creditors and financial institutions other information from The Work Number’s database are unclear.  It is not clear when, how, and with regard to whom the consumer must provide authorization for a reporting agency to share this information.  However, given that consumers must be clearly notified in writing and provide authorization prior to issuance of a consumer report when such report will be used for employment purposes, a strong argument can be made that this same proactive and consumer oriented approach should apply to all sections of the FCRA.

Equifax Information Sold to Third Parties

In addition to providing information to prospective employers, financial institutions, and creditors, Equifax also sells some of this information to interested third parties.  For example, Equifax heavily markets The Work Number’s services to student loan issurers.  Thanks to The Work Number’s information, student loan issuers have seen a 5.5% increase in Right Party Contact and a 7.3% increase in Collections Resolution.[xviii]  Additionally, Equifax provides information from The Work Number to financial firms.  In these transactions, the information is packaged as a “portfolio monitoring” service which allows financial firms to market their products to a specially selected group of consumers.  The Work Number’s information is also marketed to these firms as “proactive managing of risk.”  In this context, the firms analyze information from The Work Number for early warning signs about when someone might soon run into financial trouble.  The marketing campaign for these services touts “Using The Work Number to stay abreast of employment changes can expand your ability to mitigate risk while maximizing product and service potential.”[xix]

Strangely, the FCRA seemingly fails to address this type of information transfer at all.  While the FCRA provides guidelines for when a consumer reporting agency may furnish a consumer report, how and when a consumer report may be furnished for employment purposes, how and when a consumer report may be furnished in connection with credit or insurance transactions, and what added protections are afforded medical information, there is a lack of guidance regarding the sale of such information.  Nowhere does the FCRA expressly prohibit the sale of consumer information to third parties with a business interest in the information.  This is further complicated by the fact that Equifax owns The Work Number.  As a credit bureau, Equifax proceeds under the comparatively lax rules governing credit reporting agencies, which are distinct from those governing data brokers.  Thus, by virtue of Equifax’s affiliation with The Work Number, it can behave as a credit bureau, selling credit information to lenders.  The problem, however, is Equifax has access to a much greater wealth of consumer information than a credit bureau otherwise would, thanks to its affiliation with The Work Number.

The good news, however, is that the FCRA actually may address the problematic affiliation between Equifax and The Work Number.  Section 1681s-3 of the FCRA relates to affiliate sharing.[xx]  This section prohibits an entity that receives information which would be a consumer report from another entity under common ownership from using that information to make a solicitation for marketing purposes, unless the consumer is provided an opportunity to prohibit such solicitations after a clear disclosure has been made to the consumer explaining that information may be communicated amongst such entities for purposes of solicitation.[xxi]  However, even this provision of the FCRA might not be as helpful as it seems.  Although it may prohibit Equifax from using information it obtains from The Work Number to solicit business, that is only half the battle.  Equifax still could continue to sell the information it gathers by its own efforts to third parties.  The information might simply be less comprehensive.

Possible Solutions

In light of these revelations, the first question on many consumers’ minds is how to address this sharing or sale of private information, which appears to be lawful under the guidelines currently in place.

From an individual’s perspective, preventing sensitive information from ending up in The Work Number database seems like a futile proposition.  A job applicant, for example, could attempt to condition a prospective employment relationship on the employer’s agreement not to share any of the applicant’s personal or employment information.  However, given the current job market, most employees would have very little negotiating power, and most employers are unlikely to oblige, especially given the economy gained by utilizing The Work Number.  If an individual is unsuccessful in this negotiation, he or she can always turn down a job offer.  While doing so will keep the employee’s personal information safe for now, the applicant has cut off his nose to spite his face and remains unemployed.  It seems then that the only plausible way to regulate these information transfers is to address them before the consumer even gets involved.

Congress Should Revisit the Fair Credit Reporting Act

The most effective means by which to provide much-needed regulatory reform is to take legislative action.  Specifically, Congress should revisit the FCRA, taking into consideration the flaws and gaps that Equifax is exploiting.  One approach could include amending the FCRA to require a consumer’s written authorization before such information is sold.  Specifically, implementing the same comprehensive authorization guidelines currently in place regarding consumer reports used for employment purposes could serve as a model.  Under this approach, the consumer reporting agency would need to provide consumers with clear, conspicuous written notice of the possible sale of their information prior to the information being sold.  Such notice would need to be in a stand-alone document, and the consumer’s response, either authorizing the sale or not authorizing the sale, would also need to be in writing.

Another possible approach includes implementing stricter rules governing the flow of consumer reports out of credit bureaus, perhaps mirroring the already stricter guidelines governing disclosure of investigative consumer reports.  Additionally, Congress could amend the FCRA to clearly delineate exactly what information can be included in consumer reports.  Part of the current problem appears to involve the crossover between the personal and employment related information contained in The Work Number’s database with the credit information expected to be in the hands of a credit bureau, like Equifax.

John Balitis is a director and attorney with the law firm of Fennemore Craig in Phoenix where he co-chairs the firm’s Labor Relations and Employment Practice Group.  He represents businesses in all aspects of employment law. Kristin Penunuri is a student at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University.  She is a legal writing intern at Fennemore Craig in Phoenix.


[i] Bob Sullivan, Your Employer May Share Your Salary, and Equifax Might Sell That Data, The Red Tape Chronicles on NBC News.com (Jan. 30, 2013, 4:44 AM), available at http://redtape.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/30/16762661-exclusive-your-employer-may-share-your-salary-and-equifax-might-sell-that-data?lite.

[ii] Id.

[iii] D.C. Mun. Regs., Title 14 § 5402 (2012).

[iv] Miss. Admin. Code, Title 18, Subtitle 7, Rule 2 § 102 (2012).

[v] Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1681 (2006).

[vi] Id. at § 1681a (2006).

[vii] Id.

[viii] Id.

[ix] Bob Sullivan, Your Employer May Share Your Salary, and Equifax Might Sell That Data, The Red Tape Chronicles on NBC News.com (Jan. 30, 2013, 4:44 AM), available at http://redtape.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/30/16762661-exclusive-your-employer-may-share-your-salary-and-equifax-might-sell-that-data?lite.

[x] 15 U.S.C. § 1681b (2006).

[xi] Id.

[xii] Id.

[xiii] Sullivan, supra note 9.

[xiv] Id.

[xv] 15 U.S.C. § 1681b (2006).

[xvi] Id.

[xvii] Id.

[xviii] Bob Sullivan, Your Employer May Share Your Salary, and Equifax Might Sell That Data, The Red Tape Chronicles on NBC News.com (Jan. 30, 2013, 4:44 AM), available at http://redtape.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/01/30/16762661-exclusive-your-employer-may-share-your-salary-and-equifax-might-sell-that-data?lite.

[xix] Id.

[xx] 15 U.S.C. § 1681s-3 (2006).

[xxi] Id.

 

 

How To Learn More About Your Work Number

Consumers who want to know what, if any, information about them resides with The Work Number may do so by visiting The Work Number website (www.theworknumber.com) and requesting an Employment Data Report (“EDR”).  Processing this request involves logging in and completing an EDR request form that is available in .pdf format.  Alternatively, interested consumers may contact The Work Number by telephone at (866) 604-6570.

If an EDR contains information that is inaccurate or objectionable to the consumer, he or she may submit online comments via The Work Number website.  The website suggests that The Work Number will embed the comments so that they are visible to subscribers that obtain the consumer’s other information from The Work Number.

 

amkor - legal

Fennemore Craig Attorneys Are 2014 Benchmark Litigation Stars

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announced that five attorneys in the firm’s Phoenix office have been named 2014 Benchmark Litigation Local Stars in Arizona. The attorneys being recognized are Christopher L. Callahan, Andrew M. Federhar, Doug C. Northup, Cathy L. Reece, and William L. Thorpe.

The areas of practice in which each of these attorneys handles matters ranges from bankrupty, commercial litigation, and business and personal injury torts. The 2014 Benchmark Litigation recognition solidifies the knowledge and reputation of the firm’s legal experience across various industries reaffirms the firm’s dedication to resolve client matters and issues efficiently and effectively.

“The firm’s reputation has been built on our attorneys’ continued commitment to excellence,” said Tim Berg, managing partner of Fennemore Craig. “We are honored to be recognized by our legal community and to be included in Benchmark Litigation.”

Benchmark Litigation is a legal resource that identifies firms and attorneys who continually display the ability to consistently moderate complex litigation issues and matters in multiple jurisdictions. The annual ranking is determined by independent researchers who conduct extensive interviews over a six month period to identify the leading litigators and firms throughout the United States. This guide focuses exclusively on the US litigation market and ranks firms and leading national attorneys in the areas of appellate, antitrust, bankruptcy, general commercial, insurance, intellectual property, international arbitration, products liability, securities and white-collar crime.

child.hospital

Ronald McDonald House board adds Pixler Ryerson

Carrie Pixler Ryerson, an attorney at Fennemore Craig in Phoenix, has been elected to the Board of Directors for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Phoenix.

Ryerson practices in the area of labor and employment. She regularly represents employers before administrative agencies and courts, defending against discrimination and harassment claims, wrongful termination and wage and hour issues as well as enforcing restrictive covenants against employees. She received her J.D. from William & Mary School of Law and her B.A. from the University of Arizona.

iPhone Business Apps

‘Bring Your Own Device’ trend a growing concern

The rise in popularity of smart phones, tablets and laptops has blurred the increasingly thin line between professional and personal life, between work time and personal time. But it’s is also creating security concerns for business owners who let their employees use those tech toys for work.

“Employers need to address the question of how to react to the inevitable or current use of personal or shared devices by their employees,” said Cheri Vandergrift, a staff attorney for Mountain States Employers Council, a leader in human resource and employment law services for the business community. “From IT issues to privacy and litigation concerns, companies that ignore the rising ‘Bring Your Own Device’ tide may find that BYOD brought nothing but disaster.”

While an AccelOps Cloud Security Survey of IT security personnel ranked BYOD as the top source for fear of incurring data loss, there are also concerns regarding employee privacy should litigation ensue and the question of using personal devices goes into the courtroom. The use of personal devices in the workplace stirs questions within the IT, legal and human resources departments of companies.

“Data access and ownership are significant legal issues that surround the BYOD trend,” said John Balitis, director at Fennemore Craig. “Employees accessing employer systems with personal devices can create major network security risks and employer IT staff accessing the devices to support them can infringe on employee privacy. Further, how to define who owns what information on the devices is challenging.”

Laurent Badoux, a shareholder in Greenberg Traurig’s Phoenix office, said there are a number of legal issues that could arise from the BYOD trend. Among them:

* Breach of confidentiality — especially with medical or financial data.
* Commercial espionage or unfair competition.
* Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) claims of unreported or unpaid time.
* Dispute as to ownership of data stored on personal devices.
* Claims of harassment, defamation, invasion of privacy, etc. from improper social media posting of workplace conduct.
* Negligence torts if an exployee tries to answer a work text or email while driving and causes an accident.

“The most glaring risk (an employer takes) is that sensitive confidential corporate data becomes compromised, either because an outsider is able to access that data through an employee’s device or to copy data stored on that device,” Badoux said. “When their sensitive data becomes compromised, companies face damage to the bottom lines and public image.”

According to Travis Williams, senior counsel at the Frutkin Law Firm, if a company believes information is jeopardized, or upon termination of an employee’s employment, the employer may have the right to seize the device for a short time to ensure proper protection or removal of company’s sensitive information.

“Employees need to understand that business information on their device is the property of the employer,” Williams said. “The employer has the right to protect the information. The protection may allow the employer to seize or force ‘wipe’ the device to ensure proper removal of the information.”

While there is no doubt that the BYOD trend has given tech-savvy employees the opportunity to create a more flexible schedule and therefore increase their productivity, experts said it’s imperative that companies find a balance between protecting sensitive work data, while still providing employees flexibility and independence.

“Have a policy that specifically addresses what employees can and cannot do with PEDs (personal electronic devices) used for work-related purposes and enforce that policy,” said Tibor Nagy, Jr., a shareholder at the Tucson office of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart. “Be sure the policy addresses what happens to employer data when the employee leaves employment.”

Experts said companies who worry about issues related to the BYOD trend should look to impose tighter security constraints, develop technology guidelines and policies or employ mobile-device management tools, services and systems.

“An employer absolutely should implement a BYOD policy if the employer allows or encourages employees to use personal devices for work,” Balitis said.

Badoux said an effective BYOD program should include:

1. Mandatory Mobile Device Management software
2. Clarification of expectations on ownership of data, privacy and access to dual-use devices.
3. “Acceptable Use” procedures harmonized with the employee handbook or agreement).
4. A well-crafted social media policy.

“Do not allow highly sensitive employer, personnel, health information, or customer data to be stored on an employee’s PED, unless you are certain that device will be used and protected to the same degree as an employer-owned device,” Nagy said. “Only allow PEDs that are ‘enterprise; enabled. Enterprise requirements include encryption of storage media; the ability to remotely wipe or clean a device; the ability to enforce password changes and password complexity; the ability to apply upgrades and patches; and the ability to revoke rights to data or corporate network access.”

homeless

Key Muscheid Elected to the UMOM New Day Centers Board

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announced that Kendis Key Muscheid, a director at Fennemore Craig in the firm’s Phoenix office, has been elected to the Board of Directors for UMOM New Day Centers.

Muscheid focuses her legal practice in the areas of nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations, charitable trusts, and state and local taxation. Muscheid represents a wide array of non-profit organizations, those exempt under Section 501(c)(3) and other sections, advising them on matters including organizational structure, qualification for tax exemption, maintaining tax exempt status, charitable solicitations and registrations, endowment building and management, governance issues, and unrelated business income taxes. Muscheid also represents organizations in audits and appeals before the IRS and state and local governmental agencies. She is rated AV® Preeminent ™ (the highest rating available) by Martindale-Hubbell and listed in both Best Lawyers in America®, Nonprofit/Charities Law, and Southwest Super Lawyers®, Nonprofit Law.

UMOM is the largest homeless shelter for families in the state of Arizona which provides safe shelter and supportive services for over 170 families each night. They also offer over 350 units of affordable housing across Metropolitan Phoenix.

legal

Tindall Joins Fennemore Craig's Phoenix Office

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announced that Craig D. Tindall has joined the firm as Of Counsel. In his new role, Tindall will practice in the areas of municipal law, commercial transactions, public private partnerships, public financing, real estate development, and election law.

Prior to joining Fennemore Craig, Tindall served as the city attorney for Glendale, Arizona and was instrumental in its transformation into a destination for local and national cultural events. As the city’s chief legal officer, he directed the legal aspects of the city’s development of its sports and entertainment district, including construction of the University of Phoenix Stadium, Jobing.com Arena, and Camelback Ranch Spring Training Facility.

Tindall received his J.D. from Southern Methodist University and his B.S. from Arizona State University.

legal

Tindall Joins Fennemore Craig’s Phoenix Office

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announced that Craig D. Tindall has joined the firm as Of Counsel. In his new role, Tindall will practice in the areas of municipal law, commercial transactions, public private partnerships, public financing, real estate development, and election law.

Prior to joining Fennemore Craig, Tindall served as the city attorney for Glendale, Arizona and was instrumental in its transformation into a destination for local and national cultural events. As the city’s chief legal officer, he directed the legal aspects of the city’s development of its sports and entertainment district, including construction of the University of Phoenix Stadium, Jobing.com Arena, and Camelback Ranch Spring Training Facility.

Tindall received his J.D. from Southern Methodist University and his B.S. from Arizona State University.

Lori Higuera

Higuera elected to Women's Leadership Council

Lori A. Higuera, a partner at Fennemore Craig and co-chair of the firm’s Employment and Labor Relations practice, has been appointed to the Steering Committee of the Women’s Leadership Council for the Valley of the Sun United Way.

Higuera’s practice focuses on training managers, human resource professionals, and employees in all areas of employment law, including harassment prevention, lawful and effective investigations, effective hiring, performance management, the ADA and FMLA. She frequently conducts workplace investigations and advises clients on the implementation and maintenance of proactive employment practices. She is an employment law expert for CareerBuilder’s popular “Ask the Expert” column and often speaks on a variety of work-related topics before a wide range of professional organizations.

The Women’s Leadership Council’s mission is to build a powerful network of women who support the work of the Valley of the Sun United Way by giving, advocating, volunteering, and inspiring others to join and creating lasting change in the community.

Lori Higuera

Higuera elected to Women’s Leadership Council

Lori A. Higuera, a partner at Fennemore Craig and co-chair of the firm’s Employment and Labor Relations practice, has been appointed to the Steering Committee of the Women’s Leadership Council for the Valley of the Sun United Way.

Higuera’s practice focuses on training managers, human resource professionals, and employees in all areas of employment law, including harassment prevention, lawful and effective investigations, effective hiring, performance management, the ADA and FMLA. She frequently conducts workplace investigations and advises clients on the implementation and maintenance of proactive employment practices. She is an employment law expert for CareerBuilder’s popular “Ask the Expert” column and often speaks on a variety of work-related topics before a wide range of professional organizations.

The Women’s Leadership Council’s mission is to build a powerful network of women who support the work of the Valley of the Sun United Way by giving, advocating, volunteering, and inspiring others to join and creating lasting change in the community.

Kathy Hancock - 50 Most Influential Women in AZ Business

Kathy Hancock – 50 Most Influential Women in Arizona Business

Kathy Hancock – Executive director, Fennemore Craig

Hancock manages Fennemore’s administration across its offices in Arizona, Colorado and Nevada. Her experience includes complex government relations and issues management projects for business and industry, including mines, energy companies, development companies and manufacturers.

Surprising fact: “I asked my husband and he said, ‘You’re a pretty straight shooter. I don’t think much would surprise people.’”

Biggest challenge: “The multi-year process that started about 10 years ago involving a diagnosis of lymphoma for my husband, who went through chemotherapy, relapsed and then underwent a successful bone marrow transplant. He has done well in the 7 years since … Ultimately, we hung in there together, took baby steps when anything more was too much to contemplate and kept on marching.”

Fifty Most Influential Women in Arizona Business – Every year in its July/August issue Arizona Business Magazine features 50 women who make an impact on Arizona business. To see the full list, read the digital issue >>

97995886

17 Fennemore Craig Attorneys Recognized for Excellence

Fennemore Craig, one of the largest law firms in the Southwest, announces 17 of its attorneys were named to the prominent Chambers USA 2013: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business for 2013.

“The firm’s reputation has been built on our attorney’s continued commitment to excellence,” states Tim Berg, managing partner of Fennemore Craig. “We are honored to be recognized by the prestigious Chambers USA, an esteemed legal resource.”

Chambers USA is an annual ranking of law firms and attorneys comprising multiple practice areas. Fennemore Craig was also was recognized in band one, the highest ranking possible, for both Environment (including water rights) and Real Estate practice areas.

Fennemore Craig attorneys recognized by Chambers USA include:

Robert Anderson, Environment: Water Rights, Arizona
Lauren James Caster, Environment (including water rights), Arizona
Phillip F. Fargotstein, Environment (including water rights), Arizona
Andrew M. Federhar, Litigation: General Commercial, Arizona
Maggie Gallogly, Environment: Water Rights, Arizona
Donald R. Gilbert, Labor & Employment, Arizona
Gregg Hanks, Real Estate, Arizona
Norman D. James, Environment (including water rights), Arizona
Charles M. King, Real Estate, Arizona
Jay S. Kramer, Real Estate, Arizona
Erwin D. Kratz, Labor & Employment, Arizona
Douglas C. Northup, Litigation: General Commercial, Arizona
Michael Phalen, Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use, Arizona
Robert P. Robinson, Real Estate, Arizona
Ronald J. Stolkin, Labor & Employment, Arizona
Sarah A. Strunk, Corporate/M&A, Arizona
Susan M. Wissink, Corporate/M&A, Arizona

avnet express - donate car for chances for children

Wissink Elected to Childplay’s Board of Trustees

Susan Wissink, a shareholder at Fennemore Craig in Phoenix, has been elected to Childsplay’s Board of Trustees.

Wissink chairs the firm’s business and finance practice group and provides legal counsel in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, securities, general corporate law and commercial real estate leasing. She received her J.D. from Arizona State University and her B.A. in English from Northwestern University.

Founded in 1977, Childsplay is a nationally and internationally respected professional theatre company whose chosen audience is children. Over the past 36 years, Childsplay had educated and inspired more than four million young people and families.

Whitney Murray

Fennemore Craig Hires Legal Marketing Professional

Fennemore Craig, a full-service law firm based in Phoenix, is expanding its marketing team hiring Whitney Murray. As Marketing Manager, Murray will oversee the firm’s advertising and public relations efforts for Fennemore Craig’s offices in Phoenix, Tucson, Denver, Las Vegas, Reno and Nogales.

Relocating from Boston, Murray led marketing and new business efforts for Prince Lobel Tye LLP law firm. Murray’s areas of expertise, include marketing, business development, public relations, event management and corporate communications. Murray holds a Master of Science in Communications Management from Simmons College.

minorities

Language issues become workplace legal issues

Two Whole Foods grocery store employees in Albuquerque were recently suspended after getting in a dispute with their manager over speaking Spanish in the workplace.

That incident raises an employment law question that leaves many Arizona employers scratching their heads: Can employers require their employees to only speak English in the workplace?

The answer to that question, like the gray area that surrounds many legal questions, is “it depends.”

“While there is no specific law that requires a specific language in the workplace, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and the Arizona Civil Rights Act prohibit discrimination based upon national origin and language is closely tied to national origin,” said Stephanie Quincy, a partner with Steptoe & Johnson LLP in Phoenix. “The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a federal agency that enforces Title VII and the Arizona Civil Rights Division of the Arizona Attorney General’s Office enforces the Arizona Civil Rights Act.  Both agencies are very concerned that employers will enact language requirements not because of business necessity, but as a way of excluding certain nationalities from the workplace. The Phoenix office of the EEOC sued a restaurant located on the Navajo Nation for enacting an English-only policy, resulting in years of protracted litigation for the employer.”

That restaurant is not alone. The EEOC recently released figures on what kinds of employment discrimination cases are being brought to the agency and complaints of discrimination based on national origin, including those involving perceived problems with language ability or accent, have increased  77 percent since 1997. The EEOC has suggested that it might be the increasing diversity of the American workforce, but civil rights advocates think it’s more likely due to a climate of fear, particularly in states like Arizona that have been enacting laws hostile to immigrants, both legal and undocumented.

“Generally speaking, English-only rules are not in and of themselves unlawful,” said John Balitis, a director at Fennemore Craig who practices in the labor and employment area. “They are permissible when needed to promote the safe and efficient operation of the employer’s business.”

According to Joseph T. Clees, shareholder, and Alexandra J. Gill, associate, of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, there are some circumstances where an English-only rule may be necessary to further a safety, efficiency or other legitimate business concern. The EEOC has provided examples of such circumstances including, communication with customers, employees or supervisors who only speak English; emergency situations; cooperative work assignments where the English-only rule is necessary for efficiency purposes; and to assist supervisors with monitoring of performance.

“This is an extremely high standard and very difficult to meet,” Quincy said. “Furthermore, some of these categories would only permit an English-only rule where the business necessity is present and would not support a rule completely prohibiting non-English languages completely.”
This is where that gray area comes into play when it comes to language in the workplace, experts said.

“If the employer cannot demonstrate that (speaking English) is a ‘business necessity,’ it cannot justify such a rule and could be subject to legal action by any employee who is affected by the policy,” Quincy said. “A policy does not have to be a formal written policy. A rogue supervisor can create a policy by simply telling employees speaking Spanish to quit doing so. Such a policy can almost never be supported when enforced on employee breaks or when employees are having non-work related discussions.”

Because the EEOC has taken the position that English-only policies can violate Title VII, Clees and Gill said employers adopting these policies can face a range of penalties under Title VII if the policy is found to be discriminatory.

“An individual alleging a violation of Title VII may seek to recover damages including back pay, front pay, compensatory damages, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees,” they said. “Individuals may also request injunctive relief.”

Because of the potential backplash, Clees said employers should carefully analyze their reasoning for instituting an English-only policy prior to doing so.

“Employers should consider whether the policy has important safety justifications and/or business justifications, and whether instituting the policy would be effective in advancing the desired business purpose,” he said. “Employers should also consider whether there are any alternatives to an English-only policy that would accomplish the same goals. If an employer decides to an English-only policy is necessary, it should ensure that employees are clearly informed of the policy, including when and where it applies.”

While there is no precise test for weighing or evaluating the business reasons for a language policy in the workplace, Quincy said the EEOC suggests considering:
· Evidence of safety justifications for the rule.
· Evidence of other business justifications for the rule, such as supervision or effective communication with customers.
· Likely effectiveness of the rule in carrying out obectives.
· English proficiency of workers affected by the rule.

“Employers should only (implemented policies that either completely or partially prohibit the use of any language other than English) if they can articulate a business necessity for such policies,” said Charitie L. Hartsig, an associate at Ryley Carlock & Applewhite. “They should also clearly inform employees of the circumstances under which they will be required to speak only English and the consequences of violating the policy. Limited English-only policies have been allowed under Title VII where the policies are in place to ensure clear communications regarding the performance of dangerous and safety-sensitive tasks. The EEOC presumes that an employer that completely prohibits employees from speaking their native language disadvantages the employee’s employment opportunities on the basis of national origin under Title VII. However, the Ninth Circuit rejected the EEOC’s per se rule. Nevertheless, Arizona employers should be cautious about implementing English-only policies and do so only when there is a business necessity for doing so.”

Despite an employer’s best business intentions, experts said instituting a language policy in the workplace is most likely a powderkeg ready to explode.
“The EEOC presumes that English-only rules applied at all times are discriminatory,” Balitis said. “Because the EEOC looks with disfavor on English-only rules, an employer may be forced to litigate even the most carefully crafted rule.”

gavel

Az Business Top Lawyers list: Healthcare

Az Business magazine’s 2013 top lawyer list was created after the editorial department asked Arizona law firms to nominate their two best attorneys from 16 different categories for consideration. Those nominees were put on a ballot and were voted on by their peers in the legal community and the readers of Az Business magazine to determine the exclusive 2013 Az Business Magazine Top Lawyers list.

Susan D. Brienza
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite, P.C.
602-440-4885
rcalaw.com
Brienza is especially involved in issues concerning herbal products for women, and in biotechnology and nanotechnology issues.

Robin Burgess
Sanders & Parks, P.C.
602-532-5783
sandersandparks.com
Burgess represents physicians, therapists and other professionals in malpractice matters, as well as before their respective licensing boards.

Frederick M. Cummings
Jennings Strouss
602-262-5903
jsslaw.com
Cummings has extensive trial experience in the areas of health care, medical malpractice and medical products liability defense litigation.

William W. Drury
Renaud Cook Drury Mesaros, PA
602 307-9900
rcdmlaw.com
Drury has a strong track record of success in defending medical malpractice and negligence claims, regulatory claims and administrative claims.

Melody Emmert
Quarles & Brady LLP
602-229-5315
quarles.com
Emmert represents health care providers, including hospitals, physicians, behavioral health providers, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, nurses, and other licensed individuals and entities. Her focus is litigation on behalf of health care providers.

Scott M. Finical
Fennemore Craig, P.C.
602-916-5300
fclaw.com
Finical practices primarily in the area of litigation with significant experience in healthcare and hospital law, risk management, employee health and safety law, insurance law, personal injury actions and workers’ compensation.

Steven M. Goldstein
Sacks Tierney P.A.
480-425-2613
sackstierney.com
Goldstein has been listed in the The Best Lawyers in America for healthcare law from 2008-2013 and has expertise in healthcare law, real estate law, and business and corporate law.

Adam Lerner
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
602-440-4889
rcalaw.com

Roger N. Morris
Quarles & Brady LLP
602-229-5200
quarles.com
Morris is chairman of Quarles & Brady’s Health & Life Sciences Industry Group.

Edward Novak
Polsinelli
602-650-2020
polsinelli.com
Novak practices in the area of white collar crime/special matters. He has extensive jury, non-jury and appellate experience in criminal defense matters, complex civil litigation and government agency investigations in several areas including healthcare.

Winn Sammons
Sanders & Parks, P.C.
602-532-5786
sandersandparks.com
Sammons focuses his practice in the areas of professional malpractice defense law, general civil trial law, medical device litigation, transportation, trucking, and motor vehicle law and products liability law.

Patrick T. Stanley
Comitz | Beethe
480-219-5481
disabilitycounsel.net
Stanley is particularly experienced in litigating first-party insurance bad faith, including disability insurance and professional liability coverage, and healthcare litigation.

legal

Top Lawyers list: Government relations

Az Business magazine’s 2013 top lawyer list was created after the editorial department asked Arizona law firms to nominate their two best attorneys from 16 different categories for consideration. Those nominees were put on a ballot and were voted on by their peers in the legal community and the readers of Az Business magazine to determine the exclusive 2013 Az Business Magazine Top Lawyers list.

Clare Abel
Burch & Cracchiolo, P.A.
602-234-9920
bcattorneys.com
Abel concentrates her practice primarily in the areas of real estate, zoning and condemnation Law. She is listed in Southwest Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers in America and Arizona’s Finest Lawyers.

S. David Childers
Kutak Rock LLP
480-429-4880
kutakrock.com
Childers served on the U.S. Secretary of Health & Human Services’ Task Force on Long-Term Health Care Policies, and the Governor’s Private Sector Task Force on Long Term Care and the University of Arizona College of Business & Public Administration National Board of Advisors.

Robert D. Dalager
Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A.
602-530-8540
gknet.com
Dalager practices governmental affairs and land use law.  Prior to joining Gallagher & Kennedy, Dalager was with the Arizona State Senate for nearly 10 years.

Gregory Y. Harris
Lewis and Roca LLP
602-262-0218
lrlaw.com
Harris has extensive experience appearing before state and federal agencies and in state and federal court, and appears regularly before the Arizona Legislature.

Yvonne R. Hunter
Fennemore Craig, P.C.
602-916-5386
fclaw.com
Hunter’s practice focuses primarily on government affairs. Hunter formerly served as an Assistant Arizona Attorney General in the Arizona Attorney General’s Office.

Joseph A. Kanefield
Ballard Spahr LLP
602-798-5468
ballardspahr.com
Kanefield’s practice is focused on government relations, civil and appellate litigation, public-private partnerships, administrative law, state and local tax matters, gaming, and election and campaign-finance law.

Timothy A. La Sota
Tiffany & Bosco, P.A.
602-452-2712
tblaw.com
La Sota practices in the areas of government relations, regulatory and administrative law, election law, land use and procurement.

Paige A. Martin
Kutak Rock LLP
480-429-4827
kutakrock.com
Martin, an AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated partner in the firm’s Scottsdale office, and primarily represents governmental entities and private employers.

Mary R. O’Grady
Osborn Maledon, P.A.
602-640-9352
omlaw.com
As a former solicitor general for the State of Arizona, O’Grady has a unique breadth of experience with public law issues. Her areas of expertise include election and campaign finance law and state constitutional law.

Jordan Rose
Rose Law Group
480-505-3939
roselawgroup.com
Rose practices in the areas of government relations, municipal issues, land use, zoning, administrative law, renewable energy, and lobbying.

John B. Shadegg
Steptoe & Johnson LLP
602-257-5204
steptoe.com
Shadegg, former U.S. Congressman, was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in1994 and served eight terms before retiring from Congress in 2010.  He practices in Steptoe’s Government Affairs and Public Policy group.

David K. Udall
Udall Shumway PLC
480-969-3043
udallshumway.com
Udall has successfully represented a variety of clients with zoning and development issues before the City of Mesa, Maricopa County, Town of Gilbert, City of Chandler, and Casa Grande.

Michelle De Blasi

2013 Top Lawyers list: Environmental law

Az Business magazine’s 2013 top lawyer list was created after the editorial department asked Arizona law firms to nominate their two best attorneys from 16 different categories for consideration. Those nominees were put on a ballot and were voted on by their peers in the legal community and the readers of Az Business magazine to determine the exclusive 2013 Az Business Magazine Top Lawyers list.

Robert D. Anderson
Fennemore Craig, P.C.
602-916-5455
www.fclaw.com
Anderson practices in the areas of environmental, natural resources and water law and chairs the firm’s natural resources and environmental practice.

Michelle De Blasi
Greenberg Traurig LLP
602-445-8485
www.gtlaw.com
De Blasi advises clients on energy and environmental sustainability, including traditional and renewable energy, climate change, and greenhouse gas emissions.

Carla Consoli
Lewis and Roca LLP
602-262-5347
www.lrlaw.com
The industries which regularly call on Consoli include mines, alternative energy developers, large-scale residential and commercial developers, manufacturers, and investors in these industries.

Peter W. Culp
Squire Sanders
602-528-4063
www.squiresanders.com
Culp practices in the areas of environmental, water and natural resources. Culp was recognized by Chambers USA 2012 as a leading individual for environmental matters, including water rights.

J. Stanton Curry
Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A.
602-530-8222
www.gknet.com
Curry practices environmental law with an emphasis on air quality, Superfund and environmental auditing matters.

Joseph Drazek
Quarles & Brady LLP
602-229-5335
www.quarles.com
Drazek’s practice focuses on regulatory and litigation matters within the Firm’s Environmental Group and spans a variety of industries including mining companies, high technology companies, fenvironmental testing laboratories, and water companies.

Mark Freeze
Steptoe & Johnson LLP
602-257-5215
www.steptoe.com
Freeze is of counsel in Steptoe’s Phoenix office, and has more than 23 years of experience. He practices in the areas of labor and employment law and environmental law.

Karen Gaylor
Jennings, Haug & Cunningham, LLP
602-234-7808
www.jhc-law.com
Gaylord’s practice focuses on environmental and natural resource matters. She has counseled businesses, municipalities, water providers, insurers, and individuals for more than 25 years.

David P. Kimball, III
Gallagher & Kennedy, P.A.
602-530-8130
www.gknet.com
Kimball is head of the firm’s environmental and natural resources department and is recognized nationally as an expert in all areas of federal, state and local environmental and natural resources law.

Mitchell Klein
Polsinelli
602-650-2303
www.polsinelli.com
Klein has extensive experience working with many state and federal agencies in all areas of natural resource and environmental law.

Lucas Narducci
Polsinelli
602-650-2301
polsinelli.com
Narducci’s practice is focused on various aspects of mining, environmental, natural resources, energy, safety and health law, as well as regulatory counseling and permitting, workplace exposure issues, and workplace safety.

Sheryl Sweeney
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
rcalaw.com
Sweeney practices in the areas of water law, environmental law, electric utility law and special taxing districts. She is chair of the Water, Energy, Resources and Environment practice group at Ryley Carlock.

Amy L. Lieberman, Insight Employment Mediation

2013 Az Business Mediation Guide

Az Business magazine’s 2013 Mediation guide was created after consultation with experts in the alternative dispute resolution field.

Amy Abdo
Fennemore Craig
602-916-5399
www.fclaw.com
Abdo has extensive experience in arbitration, mediation, investigations, administrative proceedings and litigation, including bench and jury trials.

Kevin T. Ahern
Broening Oberg Woods & Wilson, P.C.
602-271-7781
www.bowwlaw.com
Ahern’s practice is confined to mediations, neutral case evaluations, arbitrations, special master appointments and consultation in his areas of practice experience — real estate, commercial enterprises, title insurers, escrow agencies, insurance agencies, lenders, and property managers.

Shawn K. Aiken
Aiken Schenk Hawkins & Ricciardi
602-248-8203
www.ashrlaw.com
Aiken devotes a substantial portion of his practice to mediation and arbitration, and was selected by Best Lawyers in America as Lawyer of the Year, 2012 (Mediation, Phoenix).

Rebecca Albrecht
Bowman and Brooke LLP
602-643-2459
www.bowmanandbrooke.com
A former Superior Court judge, Albrecht incorporates her vast experience and skills to her practice, which includes arbitration and mediation. Albrecht is an American Arbitration Association (AAA) certified arbitrator.

Gerald W. Alston
Jennings Strouss
602-262-5911
www.jsslaw.com
Alston serves as both an arbitrator and a mediator in all areas of civil litigation, including domestic relations, eminent domain, and matters involving real estate and contract disputes. Cummins has extensive trial experience in the areas of health care and is an experienced arbitrator and mediator.

Christian C.M. Beams
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
602-440-4818
www.rcalaw.com
Beams is an accomplished neutral who has resolved countless disputes through the mediation and arbitration processes. He is diligent in his efforts to bring matters to resolution, as evidenced by his high success rate in doing so.

Maureen Beyers
Osborn Maledon
602-640-9305
www.omlaw.com
Nationally recognized as a top arbitrator, Beyers has served as a neutral in hundreds of arbitrations on a variety of business disputes, and is a member of many of the American Arbitration Association’s specialized panels.

Gary L. Birnbaum,
Richard A. Frielander, and Michael S. Rubin
Mariscal, Weeks, McIntyre & Friedlander
602-285-5000
www.mwmf.com
Five of the firm’s senior lawyers are actively and continuously involved in alternative dispute resolution, including acting as arbitrators, mediators and neutral case evaluators in Arizona and throughout the Southwest.

Denise M. Blommel
Denise M. Blommel PLLC
480-425-7272
www.azlaborlaw.com
Blommel has more than 28 years of experience as an employment and labor law attorney, 15 years as a practicing mediator, including seven years serving as a contract mediator for the U.S. Postal Service.

Brice Buehler
Brice E. Buehler, P.C.
602-234-1212
www.bricebuehler.com
Since 1987, Buehler has mediated or arbitrated more than 2,500 disputes, including corporate, commercial, partnership, professional malpractice, and construction.

John R. Dacey,
Michael R. King,
Richard K. Mahrle
Gammage and Burnham
602-256-0566
www.gblaw.com
As part of Gammage and Burnham’s practice, several attorneys are available to serve as mediators or arbitrators in employment, construction, general, commercial and other litigation matters.

David J. Damron
David J. Damron, LLC
602-476-1836
www.damronadr.com
Damron specializes in alternative dispute resolution including mediation, settlement conferences and arbitration. Damron has mediated many hundreds of matters in his practice through the years and his participation as a Judge Pro Tem.

Paul F. Eckstein
Perkins Coie
602-351-8222
www.perkinscoie.com
Eckstein’s practice is focused on civil litigation and he also frequently serves as a mediator and arbitrator.

Michele M. Feeney
Michele M. Feeney L.L.C.
602-682-7513
www.mmflaw.com
Devoting her practice to mediation, arbitration and alternative dispute resolution, Feeney has litigated cases in the areas of medical malpractice, wrongful death, personal injury and other tort litigation.

Lawrence H. Fleischman
The Fleischman Law Firm
520-326-6400
www.fladr.com
Fleischman created the first Center for Dispute Resolution in the Arizona Superior Court system, saving litigants and taxpayers millions of dollars each year. To date, he has mediated more than 6000 cases for clients.

Sherman D. Fogel
Sherman D. Fogel, P.A.
602-264-3330
www.shermanfogel.com
Fogel is a full-service conflict management and dispute resolution professional, providing mediation, arbitration and facilitation services.

Richard N. Goldsmith
Lewis and Roca
602-262-5341
www.lrlaw.com
Goldsmith mediates commercial disputes and has extensive experience handling matters related to Articles 2 and 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, commercial and real estate lending and leasing, and loan documentation.

Brian Michael Goodwin
Polsinelli
602-650-2001
www.polsinelli.com
Goodwin is a professionally trained mediator and has served as a judge pro tempore with the Maricopa County Superior Court from 1982 to 2005. He currently conducts private mediations and arbitrations.

Alona Gottfried,
Jared Simmons
Simmons & Gottfried, PLLC
480-998-1500
www.sglawaz.com
Simmons & Gottfried’s attorneys are specially trained to handle mediations and settlement conferences as a way to resolve issues in a cost-effective manner. Specialties include family matters, commercial and business issues, employment disputes, and real estate matters.

J. Alex Grimsley
Bryan Cave LLP
602-364-7117
www.bryancave.com
Grimsley has represented a variety of domestic and foreign companies in international arbitrations and before various federal regulatory agencies.

Rebecca A. Winterscheidt
Snell & Willmer
602-382-6343
www.swlaw.com
Through early intervention mediation, Winterscheidt assists parties in reaching a mutual resolution of their dispute without the need for costly litigation.

William Haug,
Chad Schexnayden
Jennings, Haug & Cunningham, LLP
602-234-7800
www.jhc-law.com
Attorneys who practice Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) at JHC represent businesses, government agencies and individuals involved in business disputes.

Marc Kalish
602-956-3608
www.arizonamediator.com
Since receiving formal mediation training in 1995, Kalish has devoted his law practice almost exclusively to providing alternative dispute resolution services as both an arbitrator and mediator.

Amy L. Lieberman
Insight Employment Mediation
480-246-3366
www.insightemployment.com
Lieberman’s practice is focused on the prevention and resolution of workplace and business conflict. She mediates primarily employment and commercial matters.

Merton E. Marks
Merton E. Marks, PC
480-544-4324
www.mertonemarks.com
Marks is a nationally known arbitrator and mediator of commercial disputes involving insurance, reinsurance, securities and product liability.

Bruce E. Meyerson
Bruce Meyerson PLLC
602-277-4585
www.brucemeyerson.com
Meyerson regularly serves as a mediator in virtually all aspects of commercial, employment, construction, real estate and business litigation.

Robert J. Milligan
Milligan Lawless, P.C.
602-792-3500
www.milliganlawless.com
Milligan specializes in health care law and mediation of litigated cases and pre-litigation disputes.

Leah Pallin-Hill
Mediation and Arbitration Services, PLLC
602-387-5323
www.leahpallinhill.com
Pallin-Hill offers ADR for general civil matters, including commercial disputes, construction, condemnation, employment, family, malpractice, elder abuse/nursing homes, personal injury, probate, and real estate.

Susan M. Robbins
Mushkatel, Robbins & Becker, PLLC
623-889-0691
www.phoenixlawteam.com
Robbins is a member of the State Bar Alternative Dispute Resolution Section and is also a member of the Association for Conflict Resolution. She is active in the area of mediation and disputes and contested matter in elder law.

David L. Rose,
Sharon B. Shively,
David C. Tierney
Sacks Tierney
480-425-2600
www.sackstierney.com
In addition to serving on some of the AAA’s most sought-after arbitration panels, Sacks Tierney attorneys regularly appear as advocates in arbitrations (or mediations) under AAA rules, or in State Court arbitrations convened under an arbitration agreement.

Ira M. Schwartz
DeConcini McDonald Yetwin & Lacy, P.C.
602-282-0500
www.deconcinimcdonald.com
Schwartz actively serves as a mediator and arbitrator of intellectual property disputes.

Stephen H. Scott,
Christopher M. Skelly
Scott & Skelly, L.L.C.
602-277-8228
www.scottandskelly.com
Scott is a former judge on the Arizona Superior Court who now serves full-time as a mediator, arbitrator, appraisal umpire and discovery master. Skelly has conducted thousands of mediations in virtually every kind of civil case.

Brian E. Smith
Brian Smith Mediation & Arbitration
480-507-8895
www.bsmed-arb.com
Smith has established himself as a proven mediator, impartially assisting and guiding parties to effectively facilitate their self-determined mutual decision making which is the cornerstone of the mediation process.

Thomas L. Toone
Beer & Toone, P.C.
602-263-0900
www.beer-toone.com
Toone has served as settlement judge, arbitrator or mediator in more than 2,300 cases in Maricopa County.

Douglas G. Zimmerman
Davis Miles McGuire Gardner, PLLC
480-733-6800
www.davismiles.com
Zimmerman is a certified mediator by The Institute for Conflict Management, LLC and completed the Advanced Negotiation Skills Program at the Harvard Law School Negotiation Insight Initiative.

Mark D. Zukowski
Jones, Skelton and Hochuli, P.L.C.
602-263-1759
www.jshfirm.com
Zukowski is a construction and commercial arbitrator and mediator for the AAA. He also serves as a private arbitrator and mediator and as a settlement conference Judge Pro Tem for the Maricopa County Superior Court.

hispanic

The 25 Most Influential Hispanic Business Leaders

Benito Almanza
Arizona president
Bank of America
Born into a family of migrant workers, Almanza is now responsible for all lines of business efforts, community and civic activities in the state. The graduate of Stanford University and the University of Santa Clara has been with Bank of America for 30 years, working in California before moving to Arizona in 1992.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Hiring top talent and developing them to replace me someday.”
Surprising fact: “Growing up working with my family in the fields helped me better understand agribusiness banking.”

Marty Alvarez
CEO, principal in charge
Sun Eagle Corporation
Alvarez is founder of family-owned and operated Sun Eagle, one of the top minority-owned general contracting and construction management firms in the country. He has been a chair and officer for the Associated Minority Contractors of America since 1993.
His hope for his professional legacy: “That our well-constructed buildings improved the landscape, and our assistance to individuals and families improved lives.”
Surprising fact: “I have been involved with Shotokan Karate continuously for the past 39 years.”

Victor M. Aranda
Area president, Northern Arizona
Wells Fargo Arizona
Aranda manages six Wells Fargo Community Banking markets; Northeast Arizona, Central Arizona, White Mountains, North Phoenix, North Scottsdale and Scottsdale. He is responsible for 816 team members, 69 banking stores, and $4.1 billion in deposits. A 25-year financial services veteran, Aranda presently serves as a board member for Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Valley Leadership Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “My passion in life is to add value to those I come in contact with.  What I would like to be remembered for is how I spent my life serving, helping and developing the leaders of tomorrow.”
Surprising fact: “I was involved and directed a church Spanish choir and I have also sang in Las Vegas at the Bellagio Hotel.”

Tony Astorga
Retired CFO
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona
Astorga recently retired from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona where he served as the Senior Vice President, CFO & CBDO since 1988. He currently serves as chairman of the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation and is a member of the board of directors for the Arizona Community Foundation, AZHCC, ASU Foundation, CSA General Insurance Agency, Phoenix Art Museum, and US Bank Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “I would like to be remembered in my profession as a CPA and CFO for being a good mentor and for helping develop my staff in their work ethic and level of growth.”
Surprising fact: “I have a sweet tooth for twinkies or that my favorite movie is ‘Planes, Trains and Automobiles’, I still laugh when I think about the movie”.

Miguel Bravo
Senior community development consultant
Arizona Public Service Company
Bravo is responsible for directing community development initiatives statewide to help serve diverse markets for APS. He also collaborates with economic development organizations to attract industry to Arizona. Bravo also serves the boards of Friendly House, Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Latino Center at Morrison Institute, Boys Hope Girls Hope and Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates.
His hope for his professional legacy: “For conducting business with integrity, purpose, passion; and for having a conviction for public service.”
Surprising fact: “I became a US Citizen in 2007. Having grown up in Arizona, this was one of my proudest moments.”

José Cárdenas
Senior vice president and general counsel
Arizona State University
Before joining ASU in 2009, Cárdenas was chairman at Lewis & Roca, where he became the first Hispanic to serve as managing partner of a major law firm in Arizona. A Stanford Law School graduate, Cárdenas has served on many boards and commissions and has received various awards.
His hope for his professional legacy: “As a good lawyer who served his clients and community well with the utmost integrity.”
Surprising fact: Cárdenas was involved with death penalty cases for more than 30 years.

America Corrales-Bortin
Co-founder
America’s Taco Shop
Corrales-Bortin grew up Culiacán in Sinaloa, Mexico, watching her mother prepare the dishes that would become the recipes for success at America’s Taco Shop. Founded in 2008, America’s authentic carne asada and al pastor quickly built a following that has led to rapid expansion and a partnership Kahala, a franchise development company. So far in 2013, America’s has already moved into California, Texas and Maryland.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “As someone who has a passion for the food we serve at America’s Taco Shop.”
Surprising fact: “People would be surprised that I am named after a famous soccer team in Mexico.”

Gonzalo de la Melena Jr.
President and CEO
Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
In addition to leading the Hispanic Chamber, de la Melena Jr. operates the Phoenix Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), the state’s leading advocate representing more than 100,000 minority business enterprises. De la Melena is also the Founder of edmVentures, LLC a small business investment company with holdings in Phoenix airport concessions at Sky Harbor International.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Helping small businesses succeed.”
Surprising fact: “I had the opportunity to do business in more than 30 countries before the age of 30.”

Robert Espiritu
Acquisition marketing
American Express
Espiritu’s diversified professional experience includes working for small business enterprises as well as corporate 100 businesses in the areas of sales, marketing and financial management. He has also been actively involved with various nonprofit organizations; most recently as the former chairman of the board for the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Innovative and focused leader who delivers with energy and is known for building successful relationships and high performing teams.”
Surprising fact: “As a first generation American, I am passionate about helping aspiring and under-privileged youth achieve their dreams and advocating for Hispanic career advancement, education and scholarships.”

Dr. Maria Harper-Marinick
Executive vice chancellor and provost
Maricopa Community Colleges
Harper-Marinick oversees all areas of academic and student affairs, workforce development, and strategic planning. She serves on several national and local boards including ABEC and AMEPAC, which she chairs.  Originally from the Dominican Republic, Harper-Marinick came to ASU as a Fulbright Scholar.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Passion for, and unwavering commitment to, public education as the foundation of a democratic society.”
Surprising fact: “The joy I get from driving fast cars.”

Julio Herrera
National Spanish Sales and Retention Director
Cox Communications
Herrera and his team work across markets and cross-functional departments to drive Spanish language sales and grow Cox’s Hispanic markets nationally. He also helped establish LIDER, a leadership program tailored for Hispanic team members looking for advancement opportunities in Phoenix and Southern Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Growing and improving the Hispanic customer experience and making a difference our communities.”
Surprising fact: “Spanish was my first language and I started my career in sales leadership at 18 ears old.”

Lori Higuera
Director
Fennemore Craig
Higuera defends, provides counsel and trains employers of all sizes. She’s a Southwest Super Lawyer, an employment law expert for the Arizona Republic/Arizona Business Gazette and is a recent recipient of the High-Level Business Spanish Diploma from the Madrid Chamber of Commerce.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “A skilled lawyer who elevated the practice by integrating the diverse perspectives of our community.”
Surprising fact: “I was fired from my first job as a Santa’s helper for being too social!”

Ana María López, MD, MPH, FACP
Associate dean, outreach and multicultural affairs
Professor of medicine (Tenured) and pathology, College of Medicine
Medical director, Arizona Telemedicine Program
University of Arizona
López has a passion for addressing health inequities and human suffering. From clinical research with molecular targets to health services research, her work focuses on optimizing the health of individuals and communities.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Life is an opportunity to contribute. I hope to contribute, to make a difference.”
Surprising fact: “I love simple pleasures. Witnessing the daily miracle of the sun rising sustains me.”

Paul Luna
President and CEO
Helios Education Foundation
Luna leads Helios Education Foundation, a philanthropic organization dedicated to creating opportunities for individuals in Arizona and Florida to succeed in postsecondary education. He is the former president of Valley of the Sun United Way and has held positions with Pepsi, IBM and the Office of Governor Bruce Babbitt.
His hope for his professional legacy: “That I cared about our community and helped make it better.”
Surprising fact: “I’m seriously considering getting matching tattoos with my kids in the near future.”

Steve Macias
President and CEO
Pivot Manufacturing
Macias is a co-owner of Pivot Manufacturing, a Phoenix machine shop, chairs the Arizona Manufacturers Council, and is on the boards of the Arizona Commerce Authority and the Arizona Hispanic Chamber. He is an active proponent of manufacturing in Arizona and a proud father of three boys.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Contributed in some small way to the sustainment of manufacturing in Arizona.”
Surprising fact: “In high school, I was the school mascot – a Bronco.”

Mario Martinez II
CEO
360 Vantage
Martinez is responsible for the overall vision, strategy and execution of 360 Vantage, a leader in cloud-based sales and marketing technology solutions designed to solve the unique challenges of the mobile workforce in life sciences, healthcare and other industries.
His hope for his professional legacy: “I would most like to be remembered for truly changing the lives of our clients, employees and our community in great and meaningful ways.”
Surprising fact: “I hosted a radio show during my college years.”

Clarence McCallister
CEO
Fortis Networks, Inc.
McAllister was born in Panama and earned his master’s in electrical engineering from ASU. In 2000, he and his wife started Fortis Networks, Inc., a certified 8a and HUBzone government contractor specializing in engineering, construction and technology services.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Building a world-class organization that always exceeds our customers’ expectations.”
Surprising fact: “I did an emergency landing on a City of Mesa street.”

Rodolfo Parga, Jr.
Managing shareholder
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
In addition to managing a law firm with 120 attorneys, Parga has been to Best Lawyers in America for the last four years. He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Chicanos Por la Causa, a leading non-profit helping advance and create economic and educational opportunities.
His hope for his professional legacy: “I want to be remembered as always trying to do the right thing and having led with integrity.”
Surprising fact: “I was bullied until age 11, which drove me not only to strengthen my body, but my resolve.”

Hector Peñuñuri
Senior planning analyst
SRP
Peñuñuri is an Arizona native and has spent most of the past 15 years in the Customer Services Division at SRP.  He has served on several boards including the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and LISC.  He was raised in the West Valley, and currently resides in Gilbert.
His hope for his professional legacy: “A trusted and valuable team member/leader; a communicator who understands the importance of sharing knowledge to help others.”
Surprising fact: “I’m a jack of all trades – woodworker, photographer, musician, outdoorsman and a decent cook when I put my mind to it.”

Dan Puente
Owner
D.P. Electric
Puente founded D.P. Electric in 1990 out of his garage with one truck. D.P. Electric now has more than 200 employees and generated more than $30 million in revenue in 2012, making it the biggest Hispanic-owned company in Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “A guy that is fair, honest, hard-working and gives back both personally and professionally.”
Surprising fact: “Professionally, that I do not have a college degree and personally, that I am a Bikram Yoga junkie.”

Marie Torres
Founder
MRM Construction Services
Torres is an Arizona native and built her business in the community that she grew up in. With more than 30 years experience in the construction field, she started MRM in 2002 and currently has more than 50 employees. The focus of her company has been in government contracting and has self performed airfield work at Luke AFB, MCAS Yuma and Davis Monthan.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “As being technically competent.”
Surprising fact: “I don’t like to drive and I am happy as a passenger – even in my own car.”

Lisa Urias
President and CEO
Urias Communications
After 15 years in international marketing and communications, Urias founded Urias Communications to address the need for advertising and PR with a uniquely multicultural focus. Now an award-winning advertising, and PR agency, Urias Communications specializes in the multicultural markets of the U.S. Southwest, with concentration on the burgeoning Hispanic market.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Bridging the divide between corporations and the growing Hispanic community for mutual benefit and respect.”
Surprising fact: “I am a fourth-generation Arizonan whose grandfather was the first Hispanic city councilman.”

Dawn C. Valdivia
Partner, chair of the Labor & Employment Practice Group
Quarles & Brady
Valdivia is the chair of Quarles & Brady’s Labor and Employment Group in Phoenix. She regularly advises clients in all matters of labor and employment law and is skilled in complex litigation matters, including wage and hour class action litigation in Arizona and California.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “A creative problem solver, committed to her clients and to giving back to the community.”
Surprising fact: “I love adventure — sky diving, gliding, scuba diving, helicopters, etc.”

Lorena Valencia
CEO
Reliance Wire
Valencia is the founder and CEO of Reliance Wire Systems, a wire and tubing manufacturing company she founded in 2000. She is also the founder and president of Magin Corporation — an eco-friendly wood pallet alternative company — and the FRDM Foundation.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Empowering children by building schools and libraries in impoverished countries through my FRDM Foundation.”
Surprising fact: “I put hot peppers on almost everything I eat. The hotter. the better.”

Roberto Yañez
Vice president and GM
Univision Arizona
Yañez is a 27-year broadcast television veteran, who has served 17 of those years with the Univision Television Group (UTG). Yañez has created various opportunities that helped build the station’s relationship with the community: Cadena de Gente Buena, El 34 Esta Aqui and Ya Es Hora.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Someone who used his craft to build bridges between the problem and the solution.”
Surprising fact: “Though Monday through Friday you will never see me without a suit and tie, I am most comfortable in boots, jeans and driving a pick-up truck.”

Brossart Diane final 9314 5-29-12

Valley Forward Exands its horizon

Timing is everything, even when it comes to Mother Nature.

“In 2010, we got an $85,000 grant to look at some federal issues on sustainability,” says Diane Brossart, president and CEO of Valley Forward, which brings business and civic leaders together to improve the environment and livability of Valley communities. “We were asked to target Arizona’s Congressional delegation and get them up to speed in regards to understanding a sustainability agenda for Arizona and what that meant.”

What grew from that seed was an initiative that had actually been germinating for more than a decade, Brossart says: taking the successful Marocopa County-centric Valley Forward and giving is a statewide focus. In August, Valley Forward’s board voted unanimously to to move forward with a business plan that will transition Valley Forward into Arizona Forward in January.

Brossart says the state is facing some serious issues related to the environment and the livability and vitality of Arizona’s cities and towns will be impacted by upcoming decisions related to:
* Land use planning and open space,
* A balanced multi-modal transportation system,
* Improving and maintaining healthy air quality,
* Solar and renewable energy technology,
*  Managing our water resources, and
* Protecting wilderness, parks, national monuments and other natural areas for Arizona’s tourism economy.

“As Arizona and the country recover from the Great Recession, a statewide dialogue is more important than ever,” says William F. Allison, a shareholder at Gallagher & Kennedy. “The issues impacting us – water, energy, transportation, land use – involve the entire state rather than only the Valley. Arizona Forward will provide a forum to think outside the box and beyond the Valley.”

To get Arizona Forward to have its greatest statewide impact, Brossart and her staff connected with nine companies that had influence on communities along the Sun Corridor — the stretch of freeway that connects Tucson, Phoenix, Prescott and Flagstaff — to become charter members of Arizona Forward.

“The leaders of those companies have become our tour guides as we go into Pima County and Northern Arizona,” Brossart says. She points to Kurt Wadlington, employee-owner of Sundt Construction in Tucson, for opening doors for Arizona Forward to spread its wings into Southern Arizona.

“Southern Arizona already has a very strong environmental focus, but struggles with areas that are dependent on statewide engagement from both a funding and advocacy perspective,” Wadlington says. “(Valley Forward’s) shift (to a statewide focus) will provide Southern Arizona with added resources to coordinate its future growth in the larger context of the Sun Corridor.”

Experts agree that now is the perfect time for Valley Forward to shift to a statewide focus statewide because Arizona is at a turning point, economically and environmentally.

“There are major issues that affect the state like transportation; managing resources; and protecting the wilderness, parks, and national monuments,” says Alfie Gallegos, area sales manager for Republic Services. “These are not just environmental issues, but are issues that have an effect on Arizona’s economy statewide. I think Arizona is ready to start having more positive statewide conversations about finding ways to grow our economy in a manner that can be sustained and is environmentally friendly.”

Brossart says that while Arizona has had countless groups that have focused on making their communities better, Arizona Forward will be looking to help educate legislators become the glue that brings those regional organizations together in a spirit of cooperation and unity.

“So much of our goal is to drive a political agenda to the middle and bring folks on both sides of the aisle together,” Brossart says. “The issues that we focus on are sustainability and environmental. Everybody needs clean air, clean water, open space and parks. Those are the things that make a community viable, healthy and liveable. We all want that. Those aren’t political issues. But they do fall into a political arena that sometimes clouds the issues. But if we can be a reasoning voice of balance like we have been successfully in Maricopa County, if we can bring that statewide, it will be really good for Arizona — economically and environmentally.”

Valley Forward members expect the transition to Arizona Forward to foster additional collaboration and conversation on statewide issues, bring additional viewpoints on key issues and allow for a more global conversation.

“My hope is that we can, over time, have a collective vision that regardless of our own regional filters, we’re all in this together and need to find ways to move forward as one sustainable, economically successful state,” says Iain Hamp, community affairs representative, Wells Fargo Team Member Philanthropy Group.

Brossart says one of the biggest messages Arizona Forward will be trying to communicate is that making sound decisions about issues surrounding sustainability and the environment are good for business.

“If we make a case that shows the economic impact of parks and open space on the tourism industry, the business community will take notice and they are uniquely poised to deliver of that message and be heard,” Brossart says. “Parks groupies are great and they are important. But when the business community gets involved, people listen.”

Where Arizona Forward could have its biggest economic impact is on growth industries that rely on the state’s amazing natural resources.

“It’s an exciting time to be a part of solar energy, as the clean, renewable energy source is experiencing massive growth and helping the state and country achieve greater energy independence,” says Patricia Browne, director of marketing and communications for SOLON Corporation in Tucson. “And Arizona has been at the center of this growth. This has been made possible not only by the companies developing the solutions, but by the state and local officials, Arizona-based businesses and individual residents who recognize the importance that solar plays in a number of ways such as a cleaner environment, economic development, and energy price stability. However, there are still challenges in making the adoption viable on a large scale, and Arizona Forward helps bring together the right players to help make this happen on a state level.”

Richard Mayol, communications and government relations director for Grand Canyon Trust in Flagstaff, says Arizona Forward will give members in northern Arizona the opportunity to not only have a voice in discussions that affect the state today, but in decisions that impact what Arizona will be like 20 years from now.

“We hope it will help create an economy that provides the opportunity for prosperity without sacrificing the environment,” he says, “and makes northern Arizona an even better place to live, work, and raise a family.”

And that is what Arizona Forward’s mission is all about: bringing business and civic leaders together in order to convene thoughtful public dialogue on statewide issues and to improve the environment and sustainability of Arizona.

“All areas of the state will benefit, from urban to rural and suburban areas in between due to a coordinated and planned strategy for such essential elements as affordable energy, water, transportation, affordable housing, and a wide band of employment opportunities,” says Janice Cervelli, dean of the College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona. “All geographic, economic, and environmental sectors of the state will increasingly become part of a larger, interdependent, connected system.”

GOALS OF ARIZONA FORWARD

* Establish cooperative relationships with like-minded Arizona conservation organizations and facilitate collaboration on sustainability initiatives.
* Bring business and civic leaders together to convene thoughtful public dialogue on regional issues and to improve the environment and sustainability of Arizona.
* Increase awareness of and interest in environmental issues initially in the Sun Corridor and then beyond, statewide, building on an agenda of land use and open space planning, transportation, air quality, water, and energy.
* Support efforts to promote the Sun Corridor as an economic development area incorporating sustainability and smart growth principles.
* Serve as a technical resource on environmental issues through Arizona Forward’s and Valley Forward’s diverse membership of large corporations, small businesses, municipal governments, state agencies, educational institutions and nonprofit organizations.

ARIZONA FORWARD CHARTER MEMBERS
Arizona Community Foundation
First Solar
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold
National Bank of Arizona
SOLON Corporation
Sundt Construction
The Nature Conservancy
Total Transit
Wells Fargo

FOUNDING MEMBERS: Access Geographic, LLC; Adolfson & Peterson Construction Company; APS; Arizona Conservation Partnership; Arizona Department of Transportation; Arizona Heritage Alliance; Arizona Investment Council; Arizona State Parks Foundation; Arizona State University, Global Institute of Sustainability; Aubudon Arizona; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona; Breckenridge Group Architects/Planners; Caliber Group; City of Tucson; Environmental Fund of Arizona; Fennemore Craig; Gabor Lorant Architects; Gammage & Burnham; Godec Randall & Associates; Grand Canyon Trust; Guided Therapy Systems; Haley & Aldrich; Intellectual Energy, LLC; John Douglas Architects; Jones Studio; Kinney Construction Services, Inc.; Lewis and Roca LLP; Logan Halperin Landscape Architecture; Pima County; RSP Architects; Southwest Gas Corporation; SRP; University of Phoenix; TEP / UNS Energy Corp.; The Greenleaf Group