Tag Archives: phoenix

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CEO takes spotlight as knoodle celebrates ‘Sweet 16’

rosariaAs knoodle, the full-service advertising agency celebrates its “Sweet 16” anniversary in business in the Valley of the Sun, we ask CEO Rosaria Cain 16 questions about life as a “Mad Woman.”

1. You famously opened the agency 16 years ago with Fulton Homes, and they’re still your biggest client. How do maintain that relationship and keep it fresh after16 years?

As an agency, we NEVER take Fulton Homes for granted. Every other week, we present at least three new ideas to Doug Fulton – Creative, Media, PR, and Digital – and by consistently setting the bar higher, Fulton expects only the best – and we deliver.

2. What’s the best day at knoodle?

Any day we pick up a new client is a great day.

 3. Any regrets?

Yes, opening an office in San Diego is probably my biggest mistake – to the tune of $200,000.

4. Who’s your hero?

Scott Cain, my superhero husband, and business partner. He’s smarter than I am, and more patient – and singularly focused.

5. What’s the biggest difference between the ad game in 2015 and how it was in 1999?

It’s now a millennial digital game that has changed the marketing world – and set it on its ear.

6. You’ve been an elite marathon runner and still work out – what’s the correlation between fitness and success for so many CEOs?

I’m in the business for the long run. It’s never about how you run the first five miles. It’s about how you approach the long race.

7. It’s been said that you’ve never met a dress, handbag or shoes that you didn’t like! What’s your latest purchase?

I don’t purchase clothing – I collect! My latest find is an authentic, Flower Child dress from 1969 and it’s a remarkable example of vintage couture that I may never wear ….

8. What advice would you give to the Rosaria of 16 years ago?

Never start an ad agency without having worked in one first!

9. Now that MAD MEN is off the air, did it really depict this industry, or just indulge in a fantasy of what early Madison Avenue was really like???

It was fun show, and I loved it. It’s really just an historic look at what we do now. Don Draper drinks much more than he works, and now, for good or bad, it’s just the opposite.

10. ]Favorite quote?

“Rewards go to the bold.” – Rupert Murdoch

 11. Campaign that you’re most proud of?

“I am kidney,” for the National Kidney Foundation of Arizona.

 12. Lowest low?

Closing our San Diego office (See above).

13. What campaign do you wish you would have worked on?

There’s so many nationally and internationally that have helped to shape my vision, but here locally I’m still a fan of the early Riester “Tumor causing, teeth staining, smelly, puking habit” work

14. Any advice for people looking to get into this game?

Work as many internships as possible – in as many facets of the business as possible

15. What are reading right now?

“The Baker’s Daughter,” by Sarah McCoy. 

16. What’s next?

Creating a bigger, better knoodle. We’re running a marathon – and we have the people to take us to the next stage in our evolution.

couple

Foster financial clarity before wedding, expert warns

With June coming up, wedding season is fast approaching.  Couples of all ages are working out the final details before they walk down the aisle. However, older or more financially settled people, who may be on a second (or third) marriage, may need to take a few additional steps to ensure the well-being of their children, their retirement savings or their business, while providing a foundation for a lasting marriage.

“When people get married later in life, they typically have more assets and more responsibilities to consider than newlyweds in their 20’s,” said Mary Martuscelli, West Region President of the Private Client Reserve of U.S. Bank in Phoenix. “To have a strong marriage and prevent future issues, it is important for couples to be open and up front about their financial obligations and concerns before going into marriage.” 

Martuscelli recommends starting with a conversation about your priorities and obligations, including when you want to retire, if you need to pay for a child’s college education or if there are any major purchases or donations you want to make. You need to make sure that you understand each other’s saving and spending habits, so there are no surprises. It may make sense to sit down with a financial advisor or a couples’ counselor to provide a third party perspective and ensure that no important topics are missed.

When you have assets going into a marriage it is also a good idea to discuss a prenuptial agreement.  “If you did not trust each other, you would not be getting married,” says Martuscelli. “However, a prenup is an important step for securing your future and that of your children or business. It is not something that you can afford to leave to chance.”

Depending on where you live, marriage could negate previous estate plans that you already have in place, which also makes the discussion of wills and trusts an important part of marriage plans . New couples must take care of each other, but also need to ensure the continued wellbeing of children and other dependents. Spend some time assessing your new needs with your financial advisor. Your estate planning should be updated to reflect your new priorities and protect your new spouse and any dependents.

law

Quarles & Brady recognized in Chambers USA 2015

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP today announced that 10 attorneys from the firm’s Phoenix office have been ranked in the 2015 edition of the esteemed Chambers USA directory.

They are:

• Joseph A. Drazek – Environment (including water rights)              

• Steven P. Emerick – Corporate/M&A     

• Diane Haller – Real Estate            

• Don P. Martin – Litigation: General Commercial

• Brian K. Moll – Corporate/M&A

• Roger Morris – Healthcare          

• Jon E. Pettibone – Labor & Employment               

• Stephanie J. Quincy – Labor & Employment        

• James A. Ryan – Litigation: General Commercial               

• Derek L. Sorenson – Real Estate    

“We are honored to have our attorneys recognized for their excellence by Chambers,” said Kimberly Leach Johnson, firm chair of Quarles & Brady. “The rankings provide an affirmation of the firm’s sustained efforts toward excellence.”

Comicon Event _Norterra

CityScape hosts official Phoenix Comicon closing party

Attention all comic-enthusiasts who want to be a part of the total fandemonium that is Comicon! Just two blocks away from the Phoenix Convention Center, CityScape Phoenix is hosting the official Comicon Closing Celebration: Comic-Conclusion…The Final Level.

For the event, CityScape will transform into a majestic gamer’s dream with an Arcade Alley, Pop-Culture Dace Party, Cosplay (Costume) contests and more. CityScape will be the ultimate, final destination to the four day convention.

Details include:

  • Official Comicon Closing Celebration: Comic-Conclusion…The Final Level at CityScape Phoenix
  • Sunday, May 31 from 4pm-9pm
  • Three rounds of Cosplay Contests begin at 5pm, 6pm and 7pm.
  • Cosplay Contest Finals begin at 8pm.
  • Chalk Art interactive “Grand Entrance”
  • Selfie photo opp
  • Pop-Culture Dance Party
  • Arcade Alley
  • Prize giveaways
  • Live music
  • Heroes vs. Villains Party at Copper Blues
  • Retailer and restaurant discounts (see attached)
  • FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

For additional information, visit http://www.cityscapephoenix.com/ or call 602-772-3888.

Dr. David Dodick, director of the Mayo Clinic concussion program in Phoenix.

Youth football tackles concussion issues

Brian Brooks still remembers the first time he watched his son sustain a head injury playing tackle football. The hit left 10-year-old Carson down on the field, injured – and Brian with a parent’s worst nightmare.

“Of course, my first impulse was to run down to the field immediately,” Brian said. “It was very hard the first time that happened, watching my kid lay there.”

When Carson eventually came off the field, Brian had a decision to make. Years ago, Carson might have missed no time at all, with his coaches eager to rush him back onto the field. But the world of football has changed over the last decade. Head injuries and their long-term ramifications have overhauled long-held beliefs in the sport, making the decision of how long to sit kids out after an injury difficult for parents.

“There were still games remaining in the season,” Brian said. “We ended up erring on the side of caution and having him miss at least two full games.”

Head injuries in collegiate and professional football have come under intense scrutiny the last few years, and attention has trickled down to the youngest levels of the sport. Many argue youth tackle football has the biggest responsibility of all, as the heads and bodies of young players are still forming.

“The younger brain is more vulnerable to concussion,” said Dr. David Dodick, director of the Mayo Clinic concussion program in Phoenix. “Simply because our brain is made up of billions of wires, most of which are insulated. And it takes awhile to lay down that insulation on all of those wires. A lesser degree of trauma, of blunt force, would produce a concussion in a younger person and it takes longer for them to recover.”

Last May, Dodick attended the Healthy Kids and Safe Sports Concussion Summit at the White House, where President Barack Obama spoke. On his way home, Dodick thought about the lack of research when it came to youth sports and concussions. Once back in Phoenix, he reached out to the most influential youth league, Pop Warner.

“I felt like while we were studying concussion in collegiate and professional sports,” Dodick said. “There wasn’t much going on in terms of youth sports. So I felt it was time to reach out to Pop Warner to determine what their concussion policy was, what their sideline protocol was, how their athletes were cared for after a concussion.”

Pop Warner immediately responded to Dodick, and, after several meetings, a partnership was formed between the youth league and the Mayo Clinic. It allows the Mayo Clinic to continue to research tools to diagnose head injuries that have been validated at a professional and collegiate level but not yet at a youth one. Pop Warner players are now also baseline tested before the season begins, testing players’ vision, balance and cognitive skills so medical professionals can spot a head injury quickly during the season.

“Baseline testing should happen every single year,” Dodick said. “It gives us a sense of how their brain is functioning at their baseline. So if they are concussed we’ll be able to at least judge them compared to their baseline and we’ll know when they get back to their baseline level of functioning.”

In 2012, Pop Warner became the first youth football organization to limit the amount of contact a team could have during practice. Players are no longer permitted to participate in full-speed tackling drills when lined up farther than three yards apart.

“Pop Warner was really ahead of the curve,” said Mike Funkhouser, vice president of Superstition Pop Warner. “A good method of curbing some of the concussions came from a national limit on contact in practice. They limited the amount of contact to a third of the weekly practice time.”

The new partnership allows Pop Warner to make even more improvements in dealing with head injuries. With the help of Dodick and the Mayo Clinic, a return-to-play protocol has been instituted. Injured players are now evaluated by a cognitive specialist, balance expert and neurologist before there is any decision made about when they can return to the field. The Mayo Clinic sees children as young as 8 as part of the program.

“If a player is injured on a weekend, they call a hotline and we get them in on Monday,” Dodick said. “The last thing we want is for them never to be evaluated, their symptoms go away, they feel back to normal, then they go back to play the next weekend and they get reinjured. Because that could be devastating. Not only could it be fatal in rare instances but it could lead to symptoms that persist for weeks, months or years. I’ve seen plenty of that.”

The national focus on concussions has made parents of young football players more aware of the dangers of the sport. Brian remembers the hesitation on his part when Carson, the youngest of three brothers, first asked if he could play tackle football. Even for a father of three, the idea of his 7-year-old throwing on pads gave him pause.

“Absolutely there was hesitation,” Brian said. “And I’m not a squeamish guy.”

But not everyone feels the same. One obstacle doctors have to deal with is parents who want to rush their children back to action. Dodick received multiple concussions playing youth hockey and has been asked by parents why he won’t give approval for their child to return to play since he suffered no long-term repercussions from head injuries. Other parents will cite athletes who played collision sports and ended up with no long-term effects from concussions.

“I still think there’s a general lack of understanding of the implications of concussions,” Dodick said. “You can understand why they’re saying that. But that’s kind of like saying, ‘I know lots of people who smoke who never get lung cancer. Can I condone smoking?’ No, of course no … I also can’t tell you if when children are concussed, how many are going to develop prolonged concussion syndrome that’s going to affect their ability to perform in sports as well as academically.”

The partnership appears to have had a positive effect on young athletes. Now 14, Carson Brooks is playing in Superstition Pop Warner, after playing several years in other organizations. He suffered a second head injury while playing in Pop Warner, and his father noticed a marked difference in the way his injury was treated the second time.

“With the second injury, it was more than just one EMT looking at him,” Brian said. “With the Mayo Clinic being involved, you’re going to have a more educated set of eyes watching him. I actually mentioned to the coach how much more regimented their concussion program was.”

The biggest difference Brian noticed with Carson’s injury and within the league itself is a culture shift in which coaches, parents and players acknowledge safety as the primary focus.

“It’s clearly about the safety of the athlete,” Brian said. “I think they’re creating a culture where it’s not cool to say, ‘Oh just suck it up and get back in there.’ Instead it’s about nurturing these players to make sure they’re healthy. I think that’s a great thing.”

lawyer

Southwest Super Lawyers: Jaburg Wilk

Phoenix business law firm Jaburg Wilk has seven attorneys listed as 2015 Southwest Super Lawyers. The 2015 edition of Southwest Super Lawyers magazine lists attorneys –Lawrence Wilk, Neal Bookspan, Roger Cohen, Mitchell Reichman, Lauren Garner and Nathan D. Meyer as “Southwest Super Lawyers.” Laura Rogal is a “Southwest Rising Star.” 

Recognition is limited to the top 5% of attorneys in Arizona. The selection process combines peer nominations and evaluations and independent research. Candidates are evaluated on numerous indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Super Lawyers lists are published nationwide in Super Lawyers Magazines and in leading city and regional magazines and newspapers across the country.

tucson airport

Sky Harbor offers Memorial Day travel tips

Memorial Day weekend is the start of the busy summer travel season. Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport anticipates Thursday, Friday and Monday as the busiest travel days with passenger traffic about 15-20 percent higher than an average day. America’s Friendliest Airport® offers you the following tips for your holiday travels:

Use our best kept secret – Pick-up and drop-off at the 44th Street and Washington PHX Sky Train® station.  This convenient option allows you to avoid the busy terminal curbs. The station features Early Bag Check and kiosks where you can print boarding passes. It is only a five-minute ride from the station to Terminal 4 and a seven minute ride to Terminal 3. There is a free cell phone waiting lot at the station and four-hour parking meters for those who would like to ride the train into the Airport to meet their party. To access the 44th Street PHX Sky Train Station from the 202 Red Mountain Freeway, exit at 44th Street and head south. The PHX Sky Train station is on the southwest corner of 44th Street and Washington.

A handy service – Early Bag Check.  Travelers flying American/US Airways, Southwest or United can check their bags before they arrive at the terminals and avoid the ticket counter lines. The Early Bag Check service is available at East Economy Parking, the 44th Street PHX Sky Train Station® and at the Rental Car Center. The service is free, though airline bag fees apply. For hours of operation and more information, visit skyharbor.com/earlybagcheck.

Added convenience at a discounted price – Prepaid Discount Parking is an easy-to-use online reservation system that gives travelers the ability to book and prepay for parking in the Terminal 2, Terminal 3, or Terminal 4 garages. Those using Prepaid Discount Parking should take a ticket when entering the garage, then present the ticket and the prepaid parking confirmation (printed or on a smartphone) to the cashier upon exit. To reserve parking, visit skyharbor.com.

A special note about Terminal 3 Construction is underway on Terminal 3 modernization.  As a reminder, Spirit and Sun Country Airlines relocated earlier this spring to Terminal 2. Additionally, the north inner lanes of Terminal 3 are closed.  This impacts drivers entering Sky Harbor from the West. Drivers can still use the north outer lanes for pick-up and drop-off, but should watch for detour signs, proceed with caution, and give themselves extra time.

More tips:

·        Always give yourself extra time. Arrive at the Airport two hours before your flight departs, especially if you are parking in economy areas or checking bags.

·        Be sure to look through your purse or carry-on bag before you come to the Airport. A forgotten weapon can cause you delays, hassles, and even fines. Visit tsa.gov for information about what can be placed in your carry-on.

·        For updated information on parking lot and garage availability, visit skyharbor.com/FindASpot or call our 24-hour parking hotline at 602-273-4545.

·        Visit skyharbor.com on your smartphone or tablet to access our mobile website to find out which restaurants and shops are near your gate as well as other Airport information.

Mark Boisclair Photography, Inc.

Westin Phoenix Downtown offers summer packages

The_Westin_Phoenix_Downtown_HotelLocated in the revitalized urban core of downtown Phoenix, and conveniently situated near Chase Field, US Airways Center, CityScape, and numerous venues, theatres and museums, The Westin Phoenix Downtown now offers the perfect package for a refreshing summer getaway.

HOME RUN

The boys of summer are back and The Westin Phoenix Downtown has the ideal package for enjoying an Arizona Diamondbacks’ home game. The Home Run Package has seasonal rates starting at $94 and includes:

  • Complimentary valet parking (reg. $29/day)
  • Complimentary internet access in guest room
  • Kids under 12 eat free at Province with purchase of adult meal

The Westin Phoenix Downtown is conveniently located less than one mile from Chase Field, the home field for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

This package is based on availability for stays through Oct. 5, 2015. To reserve your stay, call (866) 716-8137 and mention rate plan LKPKG, or book online: www.westinphoenixdowntown.com.

DOWNTOWN FUN

Downtown Phoenix has become a focal point for entertainment in the Valley. Whether attending a play, museum exhibit, concert, sporting game or another exciting event, The Westin Phoenix Downtown’s is just steps away. The hotel’s Downtown Fun entertainment package has seasonal rates starting from $99 and includes:

  • Overnight hotel parking
  • Two Valley METRO light rail passes, per stay
  • Two cocktails of choice in Province restaurant, per stay

The Westin Phoenix Downtown is at the Central and Van Buren Valley METRO light rail station, so getting to and from downtown entertainment options is eco-friendly and hassle-free.

This package is based on availability for stays through Dec. 31, 2015. To reserve your stay, call (866) 716-8137 and mention rate plan LUPKG, or book online: www.westinphoenixdowntown.com.

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How bike-friendly is Phoenix?

A recent Washington Post story illustrated the connectivity of bike lanes and paths in several major U.S. cities. The result? In places like Miami and Seattle, bike lanes are intermittent and sporadically connected.

By comparison, Phoenix boasts a well-connected set of dedicated bike paths and lanes, according to analysis of data provided by the Maricopa Association of Governments.

Bike lanes and paths connect heavily populated areas from Surprise to Mesa, despite the Phoenix metropolitan area being a notable example of urban sprawl in the United States. The bike lanes extend as far west as Buckeye and as far north as Cave Creek, though they are less densely connected in these far-reaching areas.

The map does not include off-road recreational trails, paved shoulders or multi-use paths.

A similar map of Washington D.C. displays a number of short bike paths that rarely connect to one another, according to an illustration created by the Washington Post’s Wonkblog. Boston’s bike lanes line major roads but fail to run through smaller streets. It is Miami, however, that presents the least-connected system of bike lanes and paths.

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Wet ‘n Wild launches ‘Roaring River’ today

Wet ‘n’ Wild Phoenix announced the grand opening of their new experience – The Crazy Cactus Roaring River. Formerly the lazy river, the new experience features wave action, fast-moving water, tipping buckets, refreshing waterfalls and water curtains in an invigorating river ride. 

Local dignitaries will join Season Pass Holders for a ribbon cutting and first rides today. Lifeguards will be dressed as castaways and share treats and gifts with guests throughout the day.

The park is open 7 days a week starting May 21.

Downtown Phoenix, Photo: Flickr, squeaks2569

Julie Watters hired as Phoenix Public Info Director

Julie WatersJulie Watters has been named Phoenix Public Information Director by City Manager Ed Zuercher, following a national recruitment. Watters comes from the city of Glendale where she spent 13 years, most recently as Communications Director. In Phoenix she will oversee the staff handling public information, and the city’s digital media team including the website, social media and the city TV station, Phoenix Channel 11.

Phoenix City Manager Ed Zuercher said, “Julie has a proven track record of strategic communication leadership. We are excited to welcome her to the Phoenix team.”

Since 2002, Watters served in various communication and leadership roles in Glendale in both the communications and fire departments. As Communications Director she oversaw Glendale’s public information office, city-owned TV station, Glendale Media Center, website, office of special events, the Convention & Visitors Bureau, creative services, and city convention center.

Watters worked on the 2015 and 2008 Super Bowls and has played a role in high-level communications projects on topics ranging from economic development projects to the city budget, complex management agreements, public safety education campaigns and day-to-day operational services. She has also been nominated for and received Emmy awards for her work at the city-owned TV station. Prior to her work in municipal government, she was an anchor and reporter at KPNX-TV, Channel 12, for more than eleven years.

“I’m so pleased to have this opportunity to live and work in the same community and to lead the Public Information team in sharing the city’s diverse messages locally, nationally and internationally,” said Watters.

Phoenix Deputy Aviation Director Deborah Ostreicher, has been running the Public Information Office since November and will be returning to the Aviation Department next month.

“Deborah Ostreicher has done an outstanding job of upping our game in communications and we are looking forward to continuing our outreach and communication to Phoenix residents with Julie Watters,” said Zuercher.

Watters begins with the city of Phoenix on June 15.

Business Use by Quarles and Brady Only.  No personal use allowed.

Quarles & Brady attorney helps lead Special Olympics

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP announced that David E. Funkhouser III, a partner in the firm’s Phoenix office, has been appointed Chair of the Grants, Corporate Sponsorships and In-Kind Donations Committee for the Special Olympics Arizona (SOAZ) Development Team.

In this role, Funkhouser will focus on cultivating current relationships, as well as developing new partnerships between the business community in Arizona and SOAZ. The objective is to enhance the organization’s ability to provide year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for all children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Funkhouser also serves as a member of the Leadership Council for the Special Olympics Advocacy Resource program.

Funkhouser handles complex commercial litigation matters, where he focuses his practice on trust, estate, and probate litigation and other business disputes. He also routinely represents financial institutions and servicers in all aspects of litigation. 

Funkhouser is also heavily involved in the local community, just recently being named to the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) Ambassador Steering Committee, which is focused on ensuring GPEC’s Ambassador Program aligns with the organization’s key objectives and mission. Funkhouser is also a Past-President of the Maricopa County Bar Association and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. He was selected for inclusion in the 2014 and 2015 Southwest Super Lawyers magazines and named to both the Phoenix Business Journal’s “40 under 40” and Richman Media’s “Leaders under 40” lists, respectively. Funkhouser is a founding member of Suns 88 Charities and a certified ambassador for the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. He also served in the Arizona House of Representatives from 2008–2009. Funkhouser earned both his law degree and undergraduate degree from the University of Iowa, and received the 2013 Recent Alumni Award from the College of Law in 2013.

u21

CityScape hosts U2 ‘It’s A Beautiful Day Block Party’

“It’s a beautiful day!” That’s right, U2 is coming to town and this weekend CityScape Phoenix is throwing the unofficial welcoming of the band with the “It’s a Beautiful Day Block Party”.

During the two-night, pre-concert block party at  Patriots Park at CityScape and LUSTRE Bar at Kimpton’s Hotel Palomar Phoenix, guests will enjoy live music by Brazen Heads and Keltic Cowboys, a 

U2 concert ticket giveaway and special party discounts from various CityScape tenants.

Details include:

  • It’s A Beautiful Day Block Party at CityScape Phoenix
  • Friday, May 22 and Saturday, May 23 from 4pm-8pm
  • Live music by Brazen Heads and Keltic Cowboys
  • Locations: Patriots Park at CityScape and LUSTRE Bar at Kimpton’s Hotel Palomar Phoenix
  • A U2 concert ticket giveaway, drink specials
  • MillerCoors Party Bus and Uber VIP Area for guests 21 and over
  • Yakitori by Squid Ink Sushi
  • FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

Also, enjoy special block party discounts from CityScape Phoenix tenants including:

  • Grabbagreen: Combo meal deal – 2 meals, 2 juices and 2 bars for $25.
  • Copper Blues: Show your U2 concert ticket and wear any U2 gear to receive a penny pint.
  • Lucky Strike: With a U2 ticket, get a 2 for 1 drink special at Happy Hour pricing. After the concert, receive a half-priced appetizer from the regular menu.
  • Verizon: $5 off any power accessory. Coupon available via MBF app.
  • The Corner: 20 percent off any regular menu items with U2 tickets and a $20 pizza and 2 draft local beers for those without tickets.
  • V’s Barbershop: Haircut, straight razor shave, shampoo, shoulder massage, hot towel service for $39. Add a facial or face massage for an additional $20.
  • Yogurt Time: 15 percent off total purchase.
  • rePose Salon & Spa: 20 percent off a service of your choice at repose Salon and Spa.

For additional information, visit http://www.cityscapephoenix.com/ or call 602.772.3888.

From left: Chris Faller, COO of TinyKicks; MaryAnn Guerra, CEO of BioAccel; France Dixon Helfer, president & CEO of TinyKicks; Ron King, chief science and business officer of BioAccel.

$150K awarded in BioAccel Solutions Challenge

TinyKicks and Omni BioCeutical Innovations won $135,000 in the second Scorpion Pit early-stage funding competition sponsored by BioAccel and powered by the Arizona Board of Regents.

The competition, dubbed the Scorpion Pit, was held on Friday, May 15, at the Croft in downtown Phoenix. The bioscience companies were selected for investment from local investors, called Scorpions, and also BioAccel. This intense evaluation process is modeled after Japan’s Dragon’s Den and American TV’s Shark Tank. 

Recipients:

·      Two winners: TinyKicks, which is developing technology to advance healthy pregnancy outcomes, will receive an estimated $75,000 to conduct a research study. Omni BioCeutical Innovations, which offers human translational stem cell/growth factor-based skin and hair care product lines, will receive an estimated $60,000 in early-stage funding. Final terms will be negotiated and awarded based on milestones defined by investors.

·      Two entrepreneurial start-up packages: Student entrepreneur teams, NeoLight and EpiFinder, will receive an entrepreneurial package of funding up to $15,000 and business and technology services. NeoLight is developing equipment that treats jaundice in babies while EpiFinder provides clinical decision support technology to neurologists for diagnosing epilepsy.

·      Grant for young entrepreneur: The Scorpions also awarded a $500 grant to a young entrepreneur, Asher Taghizadeh, for his “designer toothpaste” for children. The grant will be used to develop his website. LifeLock CEO Todd Davis, a Scorpion, provided Asher with a $100 investment on the spot during the young entrepreneur’s presentation to investors. Watch this cute video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR7Fcs787KU&feature=youtu.be

The winners and all the other companies in the competition will continue to work with BioAccel, an Arizona based non-profit whose mission is to drive economic development through the accelerated commercialization of research. BioAccel will provide mentorship by helping the companies create improved business plans, new business opportunities, technical support and an opportunity to re-pitch their ideas to the Scorpions as they address the recommended actions provided by the Scorpions and mentors.

In 2014, BioAccel launched the Solutions Challenge – and its Scorpion Pit competition – to help advance the biosciences and created an enhanced start-up ecosystem.

“Year two was bigger and better than the first. Having Blue Cross Blue Shield and Gore involved as both sponsors and Challenge Category designers was really the icing on the cake. The Solutions Challenge is all about matching market need with innovation and investment, and this year we nailed it!” said MaryAnn Guerra, Chief Executive Officer of BioAccel. “For Arizona to reach its full potential in creating a strong bioscience driven economy, we need to build a solid ecosystem made up of a robust technology pipeline and local investment. The Solutions Challenge event was designed to help grow this ecosystem.” 

Working with local medical centers, provider organizations and specific industry leadership, BioAccel identified five critical unmet health needs in the categories of:

·      Digital, Wearable and Mobile Health (sponsored by Molded Devices)

·      Regenerative Wound and Aesthetic Therapy (Sponsored by Ulthera)

·      Simplified Access to Care (Sponsored and identified by Blue Cross Blue Shield)

·      A New Approach to Eliminating Type 2 Endoleaks (Sponsored and identified by Gore)

·      Wildcard for Student Entrepreneurs (Sponsored by Medtronic). The Wildcard Category

was new this year and targeted to help Arizona create the next breed of entrepreneurs focused on addressing market needs along with solid work force skills.

To address start-up company needs and to stimulate early-stage funding of these solutions, BioAccel assembled a prestigious panel of local investors, Scorpions, to judge the Scorpion Pit competition. The Scorpions have agreed to invest up to $50,000, if they find worthy projects. BioAccel agreed to match their investment. This early-stage investment is critical as 96% of Arizona investment dollars come from outside the state. Additionally, according to the National Venture Capital Association data, VCs provided only 1% of entrepreneurial funding in 2014 with the vast majority of ventures financed by entrepreneurs, their friends and family. BioAccel supports those entrepreneurs, providing critically needed advice and funding during the formative stages when the risk and potential benefit to society are greatest.

After a competitive process, seven finalists were identified to compete in the May 15 Scorpion Pit competition. Finalists were given 10 minutes to pitch their concept, followed by an onslaught of questions from the Scorpions. 

Finalists:

Saccadous

Craig Cafferelly, CEO

Saccadous provides the best non-invasive eye-tracking solution for diagnosing, tracking and advancing the treatment of neurological diseases and conditions like Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Alzheimer’s.

RightBio Metrics        

Paul Gilbert, CEO

RightBio Metrics is focused on ensuring accurate placement of gastric tubes. RightBio Metrics’ fluid measurement solutions challenge existing clinical and health care economics standards to produce safer, better and more financially viable results.

Omni BioCeutical Innovations           

Jane Christensen, CEO

Omni is one of the first medical cosmeceutical companies offering human translational stem cell/growth factor-based skin and hair care product lines.

Saguaro Medical Technologies, Inc.

Stacy Faught, CEO

Saguaro is developing a novel Liquid Embolic material intended to treat abnormalities in the peripheral and neuro vasculature such as arteriovenus malformations, arteriovenus fistulae, Type I and II AAA endoleaks, and other vascular procedures such as renal embolization.

TinyKicks

France Helfer, CEO

TinyKicks is developing a wearable health-monitoring smart sensor that captures fetal movement and uses machine learning to predict and guide healthy pregnancy outcomes.

Student Entrepreneur Teams:

NeoLight        

Vivek Kopparthi, CEO

NeoLight is developing high-intensity equipment that treats jaundice in newborn and pre-term babies.

EpiFinder

Robert Yau, CEO

Provides clinical decision support technology to neurologists who want to know more about and effectively diagnosis epilepsy syndromes at the point of care.

Young Entrepreneur:

The morning event was capped with the presentation of a young entrepreneur, Asher Taghizadeh, presenting his concept for “designer toothpaste” for children. He designed a product to encourage the youth to brush more often and longer by using toothpaste that they mix themselves, or co-create with their parents, based on the flavors they like best! Asher’s father, Farhan Taghizadeh, M.D., is a principle in one of BioAccel’s portfolio companies, Aesthetics BioMedical. While Asher lives in New Mexico, his initiative was recognized as a good model for youth and future entrepreneurs. “Obviously it is never too early to take your creative ideas and turn them into a business,” said Todd Davis, CEO of LifeLock. “We hope with BioAccel’s new Fund Raising Campaign, Reaching Our Potential, that we will see many more entrepreneurs, young and old, developing among us!” Watch Asher’s video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR7Fcs787KU&feature=youtu.be

Scorpions:

The Scorpions for the event were: Alex Brigham, CEO, Ethisphere Institute; Eric Crown, Chairman Emeritus, Insight Enterprises; Todd Davis, CEO, LifeLock; Francine Hardaway, Ph.D., Founder Stealthmode Partners; and Vishu Jhaveri, M.D., Senior Vice President, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona; and Jeff Pruitt, CEO, Tallwave.

Alex Brigham, Executive Director and Founder of the Ethisphere Institute, created the world’s most recognized authority in the research, rating and certification of corporate and institutional ethics, anti-corruption, and sustainability efforts.

Eric Crown, Chairman Emeritus, Insight Enterprises, is a serial entrepreneur and investor who has been building and investing in companies – startups to multibillion-dollar enterprises – for more than 30 years. A leader known for creating high-performance cultures and streamlined business processes, he co-founded Insight Enterprises, which became a Fortune 500 company with $5 billion in annual sales.

Todd Davis built an organization at the forefront of helping to combat identity theft crimes. Under his leadership, LifeLock was honored with the 2010 Best New Product or Service of the Year Stevie Award for the LifeLock Identity Alert™ system and the American Business People’s Choice Award for its TrueAddress™ service in 2009.

Francine Hardaway, Ph.D., co-founded Stealthmode Partners, an accelerator and advocate for entrepreneurs in technology and health care, in 1998. Hardaway was an Entrepreneurial Fellow of the Eller Entrepreneurship Center at University of Arizona, and was a founder of Social Media Club Arizona and the Arizona Software Association.

Dr. Vishu Jhaveri, Senior Vice President, Blue Cross Blue Shield of AZ, oversees the development of corporate medical policies and the daily administrative functions of the Health Services Division. In addition to the academics of medical policy development, those functions include: accreditation, medical claims review, clinical quality improvement, care management, disease management, health promotion/wellness, utilization review and provider credentialing.

Jeff Pruitt is the Founding Partner, President and CEO of Tallwave, a venture development firm and commercializor, headquartered in Scottsdale that helps entrepreneurs build their early-stage companies through sound capital strategy and well-executed go-to-market plans. He is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and has sat on the advisory councils of Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft.

180 DEGREES AUOTOMOTIVE

Documentary features Phoenix’s 180 Degrees Automotive

Back in high school’s trips to the repair shop involved an all-too-common experience: the local mechanic assuming she knew nothing about cars, simply because she’s a woman.

Today, she’s not only shattered that stereotype by launching the successful 180 Degrees Automotive in Phoenix – she’s also committed to empowering and educating customers to ensure they never feel talked down to.

Now, 180 Automotive is getting national attention from Deluxe Corporation’s Small Business Revolution documentary project. The Small Business Revolution, which also features “Shark Tank” star Robert Herjavec, is a yearlong campaign that celebrates the vibrancy, variety and community impact of small businesses across the country. Its latest story is a photo essay profiling 180 Automotive, one of 100 profiles of inspiring small businesses that will debut throughout 2015 at SmallBusinessRevolution.org.

In addition to running a successful business, Lateiner actively encourages other women to pursue careers as mechanics. In fact, six of her shop’s eight employees are women. But she doesn’t stop there: Lateiner is also one of three female hosts on the show “All Girls Garage,” and she mentors other small businesses too.

Deluxe developed the Small Business Revolution to focus on the importance of personal touch and local involvement in an era when business is becoming increasingly impersonal. The campaign is capturing the stories of small businesses and their customers, families and friends – all of whom are a crucial part of what makes our communities whole.

“The hands-on customer service, the entrepreneurial spirit and the deep community involvement people find in the small businesses they frequent make all the difference,” said Amanda Brinkman, chief brand and communications officer for Deluxe Corp. “Telling these moving, inspirational stories and putting a spotlight on these owners is our way of celebrating the best parts of American business.”

The Small Business Revolution will unfold throughout 2015, as a part of Deluxe’s 100th anniversary celebration. Since 1915, Deluxe has helped small businesses and financial institutions grow and thrive by providing a range of business services, from websites and logos to social media and email marketing to checks and other financial services.

The Small Business Revolution will also award $25,000 to one small business later this year. Anyone can nominate their favorite small business at SmallBusinessRevolution.org, and Shark Tank’s Herjavec will help Deluxe choose the winner who best exemplifies the Small Business Revolution spirit. The person who nominates the winning business can see how it feels to be a “shark” by personally delivering the $25,000 prize.

 

insurance

CBIZ hires new Phoenix market leader

CBIZ, Inc. today announced the hiring of Will Spong as market leader for Phoenix for CBIZ Benefits & Insurance Services, Inc.

Spong comes to CBIZ with 14 years of professional experience and the professional designation of Group Benefits Disability Specialist (GBDS). Before joining CBIZ, Spong was a senior sales consultant at Hartford Life Insurance Co. and a sales consultant at Unum. Most recently, he was senior vice president at Brown & Brown Insurance of Arizona, a position he held for eight years, leading the national sales contest teams.

In his new position, Spong will be responsible for growing employee benefits revenue through personal production, and leading both producers and client service teams to expand CBIZ’s market share in Phoenix. His role will include serving as a market influencer and collaborating with all CBIZ partners to broaden cross-serving success. Along with other members of Phoenix senior leadership, Spong will work to develop and enhance the Phoenix organizational design and outline responsibilities for future team members.

“Will joins the CBIZ team at a transformational time in the Arizona employee benefits market, as the firm seeks to add new creative talent to grow our market share. Will is a strong addition to our leadership team in the region, and we’re confident that he will be a prominent player in leading our next chapter,” said Jim O’Connor, president of CBIZ Employee Benefits.

Spong holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in business administration and marketing from Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan.

CBIZ provides professional business services that help clients better manage their finances and employees. CBIZ provides its clients with financial services including accounting, tax, financial advisory, government health care consulting, risk advisory, real estate consulting, and valuation services. Employee services include employee benefits consulting, property and casualty insurance, retirement plan consulting, payroll, life insurance, HR consulting, and executive recruitment. As one of the largest accounting, insurance brokerage and valuation companies in the United States, the company’s services are provided through 100 company offices in 34 states.     

law1

Matthew Martinez joins Jackson Lewis in Phoenix

Jackson Lewis P.C., one of the country’s largest and fastest-growing workplace law firms, is pleased to announce Matthew J. Martinez has joined the firm’s Phoenix office as Shareholder. Mr. Martinez, who joins the firm from Fennemore Craig, brings to Jackson Lewis over 13 years of experience in immigration and nationality law. Mr. Martinez’s arrival strengthens the firm’s Immigration Practice Group, which recently benefited from the addition of immigration pro Lucrecia Davis in Houston.

“Our ability to recruit high-level immigration specialists like Lucrecia and now Matt is a testament to Jackson Lewis’ excellent reputation as well as our strategic growth in the field in response to client demand,” said Sean G. Hanagan, Leader of the Immigration Practice Group. “Matt’s talents contribute significantly to our bench strength in Arizona – a significant market for immigration – and his proximity to Las Vegas and Silicon Valley provides a tremendous upside for our clients in those regions.”

“We are pleased to welcome Matt to the Phoenix office, where his experience will immediately strengthen our immigration capabilities and ability to service all of our clients in the Phoenix area and throughout Arizona,” added Phoenix office Managing Shareholder Gregg E. Clifton. “Matt is a proven leader with strong connections to the local employer community, and he adds tremendous value to our team.” 

Mr. Martinez provides immigration-related counsel for multinational corporations, academic institutions, information technology providers and manufacturers from countries throughout the world. He represents companies in the preparation of nonimmigrant visa petitions, labor certification (PERM) applications, immigrant petitions, and permanent residency applications. He regularly works with companies to conduct internal I-9 audits in an effort to assess compliance with immigration, employment and discrimination laws, and works with clients to develop hiring policies and procedures. He also assists employers in responding to agency-initiated workplace audits and investigations. 

Mr. Martinez works closely with companies from diverse industries, including the resort, equine and agricultural industries, to develop guest worker programs that provide temporary and seasonal workers. In addition, he has extensive experience representing athletes, particularly in the baseball and equestrian industries. He also assists companies in sending employees abroad, working with HR professionals and individual employees to obtain appropriate outbound visas.  

Mr. Martinez is an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association and frequent lecturer on immigration law issues. He received his B.S. from Brigham Young University and his J.D. from Brigham Young’s J. Reuben Clark Law School, where he was Senior Editor of the BYU Law Review. He is fluent in Spanish.

Jackson Lewis’ Phoenix office can be reached at (602) 714-7044.

Dillan Micus

AXA Advisors Southwest awards scholarships

AXA Advisors Southwest, a leading provider of financial services for consumers and businesses, has announced that Anvita Gupta, a high school senior attending BASIS in Scottsdale, will receive $25,000 as a national winner of the 2015 AXA Achievementsm Scholarship in association with U.S. News & World Report. 

Gupta is one of 52 students – one from each state, plus Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico – that has been awarded scholarships of $10,000. Of those 52 students, only 10 nationwide – including Gupta – were chosen to receive an additional $15,000 scholarship award. All of the scholarship recipients are graduating high school seniors who demonstrated ambition and drive, determination to set and reach goals and the ability to succeed in college.

“Though not yet out of high school, Anvita founded non-profit organization LITAS For Girls, an after-school program that aims to inspire middle school girls to pursue computing careers by introducing them to computer science technologies,” says Philip Kim, senior vice president and director of retirement benefits at AXA Advisors Southwest, who serves as office champion of the scholarship program. “During Anvita’s year-long program, students learn visual programming, game development, and app development.”

According to Kim, LITAS mentors students to eventually develop their own project to solve a social program of their choice, using the technology skills they have learned. At the end of the program, the girls present their project in a Technology Showcase to several women CEOs of technology corporations.

In addition to Gupta, AXA Advisors Southwest is pleased to announce five fellow Arizona students will each receive $2,500 as winners of the 2015 AXA Achievementsm Community Scholarship program. They are:

• Mathew Kaplan of the Tesseract School in Phoenix

Sara Mavis of Nogales High School in Nogales

Selvam Sathana of Prescott High School in Prescott

Tata Bharath of Hamilton High School in Chandler

Meagan Bethel of Tucson High Magnet School

The program is administered by Scholarship Management Services®, a program of Scholarship America®, one of the nation’s largest nonprofit private sector and educational support organizations.

Funded by the AXA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of AXA Advisors, AXA Achievement was established to address the financial barriers faced by college bound high school students. Another component is the highly successful AXA Achievementsm Scholarship in association with U.S. News & World Report, which awards $670,000 in annual scholarships. Since the program began, AXA Achievement has awarded $22.8 million in college scholarships to more than 5,100 students. 

“Our Southwest branch has a history of community involvement and we are proud to provide information and support to families so that they can help their children financially prepare for, attend and succeed in college,” commented Dillan Micus, Executive Vice President of AXA Advisors Southwest, recently honored as a 2015 Governor’s Volunteer Service Award Winner.  “AXA Advisors is about investments, and we consider these scholarships an investment in these students and in our community.”

Osborn

West Osborn Apartment Community sells for $800,000

CBRE has negotiated the following multi-family sale transaction:

Clear Sky Uptown III LLC from Phoenix, AZ has purchased West Osborn, a 17-unit multi-family property located at 445 West Osborn Road in Phoenix, Arizona from West Osborn Apartments LLC of Phoenix, AZ. Brian Smuckler and Jeff Seaman of CBRE’s Phoenix office represented both buyer and the seller in negotiating the $800,000 transaction.

Michael Bill, CEO of MJ Insurance.

MJ Insurance celebrates 10th anniversary of Phoenix office

MJ Insurance, a leading property-casualty and employee benefits agency and one of the largest privately-held insurance agencies in the nation, is celebrating its 10th anniversary of its Phoenix’s office. Headquartered in Indianapolis, MJ Insurance expanded to the Southwest opening its Phoenix office in 2005.

MJ’s Phoenix office, strategically located in a centralized business district in Phoenix along Camelback Corridor, has continued to grow since 2005 and now has 16 team members serving clients from around the region and throughout the country. Impressively, over the past decade all of MJ’s growth in Phoenix has been organic and continues to be a key element of the agency’s overall long-term growth plans.

“Ten years ago, we saw great opportunity in the Southwest and knew opening our Phoenix office was the right decision at the right time,” said MJ Insurance CEO Michael H. Bill, who runs the company from its Phoenix location and grew-up and attended school in Arizona.

“I could not be more proud of our employees – both here and in Indiana – who have contributed to the immense success we have enjoyed in Arizona. Of course, our clients and community partners in the region deserve great praise for the trust they have placed in MJ Insurance. We look forward to the great things that lie ahead and are excited to maintain our continued success and help current and future clientele achieve their business goals,” Bill added.

Recently, MJ Insurance celebrated its 50th ‘golden’ anniversary. MJ has earned several award accolades throughout the years and regularly is named one of the “best places to work” and as a “top employer” in the industry – including in Arizona.

 

MJ Insurance is a risk management and benefits consulting agency that, since 1964, has grown from a two-person start-up to an agency with more than 135 employees.

 

MJ Insurance specializes in a diverse selection of unique service lines including construction, energy, transportation, real estate, manufacturing, sororities and mining. MJ also offers complete employee benefit programs including major medical, group disability, group life and onsite employer clinics. MJ Insurance currently has clients in 16 countries and in every U.S. state.

Leonardo Loo

Black Chamber honors Leonardo Loo

The national law firm of Quarles & Brady LLP today announced that Phoenix partner and Business Law Practice Group chair Leonardo Loo was honored with the 2015 Chairperson’s Award by the Black Chamber of Arizona (formerly the Greater Phoenix Black Chamber of Commerce) at its 17th Annual Awards Banquet, which was held March 13, 2015, at the Phoenix Convention Center. The award is given each year to an individual making a positive economic impact across the state through his/her service to both the Black Chamber and the community-at-large. 

Loo volunteers on the boards of directors for the Black Chamber of Arizona and Asian American Bar Association, respectively, and also serves as general counsel for the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Loo, who focuses on mergers and acquisitions, commercial financing, international transactions, securities, and general corporate law involving clients in a wide variety of industries, is also currently serving as the chair of the board of directors for Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc. (CPLC), a statewide community development corporation committed to building stronger, healthier communities as a lead advocate, coalition builder, and direct service provider. CPLC promotes positive change and self-sufficiency to enhance the quality of life for the benefit of those it serves.

Earlier this year, Loo was honored by Az Business Magazine as one of the top “Minority Leaders in Arizona.” In 2014, he was honored with the Community Leader of the Year Award from the Phoenix chapter of the National Association of Asian American Professionals for his devotion to the community and outstanding service to the Valley. Loo earned his law degree from the University of Chicago and his bachelor’s degree from Stanford University.

Ho_Melissa_R[1]

Polsinelli’s Melissa Ho will serve on Justice Project board

Melissa Ho, a shareholder in the Phoenix office of the national law firm Polsinelli, has been asked to serve on the Board of Directors of the Arizona Justice Project (AJP). Since 1998 the Justice Project has been helping to overturn and prevent wrongful convictions in the State of Arizona. It is a non-profit organization whose mission is to examine claims of innocence and manifest injustice, and provides legal representation for inmates believed to have been failed by the criminal justice system.

“It is an honor to be elected to the Board of Directors of an organization that works tirelessly to strengthen the criminal justice system.” said Melissa. “For a system of justice to be truly just, it must take steps to assist those who have been wrongfully convicted, falsely accused, or have suffered manifest injustice. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve on the board to further its goals.”

Melissa previously worked on the Louis Taylor case, which received national visibility on CBS 60 Minutes. Taylor was released at the age of 58 after maintaining his innocence and being incarcerated for more than 42 years. Together with attorneys and volunteers from the Arizona Justice Project, Taylor was released after developments in arson science showed that the original investigation was flawed.

As a shareholder of the national law firm Polsinelli, Melissa works in the areas of government investigations and white collar criminal defense. She also dedicates her time to the State Bar of Arizona as a member of the Bar’s Board of Governors. Melissa is a former past president of the Arizona Asian American Bar Association. She has also served on numerous boards and commissions for the City of Phoenix, and volunteers her time on domestic violence, guardianship and immigration matters.

Last year, Melissa was the recipient of the Judge Learned Hand Emerging Leadership Award, which is a tribute to an attorney practicing twelve years or less who has demonstrated a commitment to the values of public or community service. She is also a past recipient of “Best Lawyers Under 40” awarded by the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, an honor bestowed on only a select few attorneys in the United States. In 2013, she was chosen by the Phoenix Business Journal as a recipient of its “Forty Under 40” award honoring the best and brightest leaders in the Phoenix metro area. Melissa has also been named to the “Lawyers of Color Hot List” and recently was selected by AZ Business Magazine as a “Generation Next Forty Under Forty.” Most recently, Chambers USA, the world’s leading guide to the legal profession, ranked Melissa in its 2014 America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the category of Litigation: White Collar Crime. Southwest Super Lawyers named her as a Rising Star in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 in the category of Criminal Defense – White Collar.

Melissa earned her B.A. with honors and a B.S. from Arizona State University and her J.D. from the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law.

Weight-loss surgery - Scottsdale Living Magazine Spring 2012

Bridges Center for Weight Management earns designation

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona named Bridges Center for Surgical Weight Management at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Phoenix as part of its Blue Distinction® Centers for Specialty Care program. This healthcare facility has been designated as a Blue Distinction® Center+ for delivering quality care resulting in better overall outcomes for bariatric patients, while also meeting key requirements for cost efficiency.
 
To receive a Blue Distinction Center+ for Bariatric Surgery designation, a new designation added to the program this year, a healthcare facility must demonstrate success in meeting patient safety as well as bariatric-specific quality measures, including complications and readmissions, for gastric stapling and/or gastric banding procedures. 
 
A healthcare facility must also have earned national accreditations at both the facility level and the bariatric care-specific level, as well as demonstrate better cost efficiency relative to its peers. Quality is key: only those facilities that first meet Blue Distinction’s nationally-established, objective quality measures will be considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+.
 
“The Blue Distinction Specialty Care recognition program was developed to identify healthcare facilities with proven expertise in delivering specialty care,” said Dr. Vishu Jhaveri, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona chief medical officer. “The Bridges Center for Surgical Weight Loss Management team at St. Luke’s Medical Center has a commitment to quality and helping members better manage their care through the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.”
 
Bariatric surgeries are among the most common elective surgeries in the U.S., which provides a significant opportunity to improve quality and efficiency within the healthcare system. There were 179,000 bariatric surgeries performed in 2013, according to the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, and the average cost is more than $28,000 per episode, according to the Journal of the American Medical Association. Furthermore, it is estimated that 72 million Americans are obese and 24 million suffer from morbid obesity, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The estimated annual healthcare costs of obesity-related illnesses are $190.2 billion, or nearly 21 percent of annual medical spending in the U.S., according to the Journal of Health Economics
 
Research shows that facilities designated as Blue Distinction Centers and Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients compared with their peers. On average, Blue Distinction Centers+ are also 20 percent or more cost efficient than non-Blue Distinction Center+ designated healthcare facilities.
 
“We’re honored to receive this noteworthy designation,” said Hilario Juarez, M.D., FACS, Co-Medical Director of Bridges Center for Surgical Weight Management at St. Luke’s Medical Center. “Our team is dedicated to making positive experiences for our patients by guiding and supporting them through every step of their weight loss journeys.”
 
Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality providers for their specialty care needs in the areas of bariatric surgery, cardiac care, complex and rare cancers, knee and hip replacements, spine surgery, and transplants while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the care they deliver.
For more information about the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program and for a complete listing of the designated facilities, visit www.bcbs.com/bluedistinction.
Land3502 New Brochure

CPI sells 5 industrial acres in Phoenix

Commercial Properties, Inc. has sold ±5 acres located at 3502 E. Roeser Rd. in Phoenix. Jeff Hays, Chad Neppl and Ryan Steele of CPI’s Tempe Industrial Team represented the seller, Hadco Corporation, in this $1.58 million sale.

The site offers convenient freeway access and is located south of Broadway Road and east of 32nd Street.  The buyer, Colten Cowell Foundation was represented by DTZ.