Tag Archives: Tempe Chamber of Commerce

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Wilkinson Named Business Woman of the Year

The Tempe Chamber of Commerce has named Dr. Christine K. Wilkinson as its 2014 Business Woman of the Year. She was honored at the 19th Annual Women in Business Conference on May 21 at the PERA Club in Tempe.

Dr. Wilkinson is Senior Vice President and Secretary of the University and President, ASU Alumni Association, Arizona State University. Prior to these appointments, she served as Vice President for Student Affairs for 13 years. Among her other administrative assignments, Wilkinson has served as the university’s interim athletic director on three separate occasions. She is a tenured faculty member in the Division of Educational Leadership & Innovation, Mary Lou Fulton Teacher College.

The Business Woman of the Year award was established to recognize an outstanding business woman who has positively impacted the Tempe community. Wilkinson and the other two finalists have achieved excellence in their fields, displayed leadership in the community, served as positive role models and are active in programs within the community and the Tempe Chamber. They have received numerous awards and accolades for their professionalism and spirit of service.

“The Business Woman of the Year award recognizes the valuable contributions that the candidates have made to the business community and to the Tempe Chamber of Commerce. Their hard work and dedication have made an admirable and positive impact that we are proud to recognize,” said Mary Ann Miller, president and CEO of the Tempe Chamber.

Wilkinson’s current involvement in the community includes serving on the Community Advisory Council for Wells Fargo, the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona Board and the Governance Committee for the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center, just to name a few. In addition, she is a member of the Arizona Business Leadership Association, Arizona Women’s Forum and ASU Women & Philanthropy.

She has received the University’s Award of Merit, the Alumni Achievement Award, was named the Valley Leadership 2009 Woman of the Year, and, in 2012, was selected as one of Arizona’s 48 Most Intriguing Women for the Arizona Centennial Legacy Project. Her educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in Education with distinction from ASU, a Master of Arts in Education, Counseling Psychology from the University of California at Berkeley and a Doctor of Philosophy in Higher Education Administration from ASU.

The two other finalists were Kate Hanley, Executive Director, Tempe Community Council, and Nancy Kinnard, Vice President/Executive Relationship Manager, National Bank of Arizona.

Immediate previous recipients of the award include Kristine Kassel in 2013 and Robin Trick in 2012.

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Finalists named for Business Woman of the Year

The Tempe Chamber of Commerce has announced three finalists for the 2014 Business Woman of the Year award. The recipient will be honored at the 19th Annual Women in Business Conference May 21 at the PERA Club, 1 E. Continental Dr., in Tempe.

The award was established to recognize an outstanding business woman who has positively impacted the Tempe community. The finalists have achieved excellence in their fields, displayed leadership in the community, served as positive role models and are active in programs within the community and the Tempe Chamber.

“The Business Woman of the Year award recognizes the valuable contributions that the candidates have made to the business community and to the Tempe Chamber of Commerce. Their hard work and dedication have made an admirable and positive impact that we are proud to recognize,” said Mary Ann Miller, president and CEO of the Tempe Chamber.

The three finalists are Kate Hanley, Executive Director, Tempe Community Council; Nancy Kinnard, Vice President/Executive Relationship Manager, National Bank of Arizona; and Dr. Christine K. Wilkinson, Senior Vice President and Secretary of the University and President, ASU Alumni Association, Arizona State University.

Kate Hanley is Executive Director of the Tempe Community Council (TCC) and lead administrator of Tempe Community Foundation. She has earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in family studies, public policy and public administration. Hanley began her professional career flying all over the world, planning and implementing international health programs and lobbying for maternal and health concerns at both the local and national levels, but she found her dream job serving the needs of her neighbors in Tempe.

Nancy Kinnard is Vice President/Executive Relationship Manager at National Bank of Arizona, having previously served as branch manager of the Tempe, Friendship Village and Carefree branches. Kinnard is a member of the Tempe Chamber’s Women in Business Council and has been a mentor in its Mentoring Program for the past two years. She is the director of the Women of Scottsdale; sits on the board for National Bank of Arizona’s Women’s Financial Group; and is a member of the National Association of Women Business Owners.

Dr. Christine K. Wilkinson is Senior Vice President and Secretary of ASU and President of the ASU Alumni Association. Dr. Wilkinson’s current involvement in the community includes serving on the Valley of the Sun United Way Board, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona Board, the Governance Committee for the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center and more. She has received the University’s Award of Merit and was selected as one of Arizona’s 48 Most Intriguing Women for the Arizona Centennial Legacy Project.

For more information and to request interviews and photos, please contact Sachiyo Spires at sachiyo@tempechamber.org.

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Buck Truck Adds Substance to Food Drives

Tempe, nonprofit, crowd-funding, grocery stores, farmers, donate perishable food items, Buck Truck, Tempe Leadership, United Food Bank, Mesa, Ed Baker, Tempe Chamber of Commerce, Lisa Pino, Arizona

A Tempe-based nonprofit is utilizing the power of crowd-funding to enable grocery stores and farmers to donate perishable food items.

Buck Truck, a project of this year’s Tempe Leadership team, is accepting donations for refrigerated delivery trucks to the United Food Bank in Mesa.

The United Food Bank currently relies on donations from canned-food drives and retailers.  The donations from retailers are limited, however, as the United Food Bank lacks the ability to transport food that requires refrigeration for freshness.

“You want to provide the best food to those you’re trying to help,” said Ed Baker, a member of this year’s Tempe Leadership team. “The best foods for people to live a healthy life are fresh, perishable foods.”

The Tempe Leadership Program, a product of the Tempe Chamber of Commerce, has been around since 1985 and each year puts together a team of community-centric individuals for nine months to engage in a project that can cover a range of community services.

“When we sat down to decide what our project would be, it was brought up that United Food Bank has a difficult time accepting fresh food,” Baker said. “We thought, ‘If only we could get 10 or 15 people to donate for a refrigerated truck.’”

The final decision was the concept of Buck Truck, to which contributors are encouraged to donate $1, $10 or $15.

The goal is to raise $41,000 for trucks that can “deliver fresh vegetables and meats from local farmers, ranchers, suppliers and grocery stores” as opposed to non-perishable items typically collected by charities in canned-food drives.

The Buck Truck website states that the refrigerated food truck will allow 24,000 pounds of what previously would have been wasted food to be distributed monthly, which it notes equates to 20,000 fresh meals.

“Buck Truck is very important because it will allow us to provide fresh produce and lean protein to our 200 partners,” said Lisa Pino, president and CEO of United Food Bank. “It’s the food you need for a healthy, adequate diet.”

The importance of Buck Truck is not only to increase the quality of food being served to those in need, but also the quantity, as Arizona is currently scarce in resources to serve what she explained is one of the hungriest states in the country, said Pino.

“The Buck Truck is nimble and responsive to Arizona’s hunger needs,” she said.

Arizona is tied as the worst state for childhood hunger, and is fifth worst in food insecurity (limited access to adequate food sources), according to statistics cited on the United Food Bank website.

As well as helping absolve statewide hunger, Pino noted a collateral benefit of Buck Truck is also contributing to helping reduce food waste.

“A theme of sustainability is key for us,” Pino said. “We want to eliminate food waste and engage more young people on the issue.”

Hamer - June 2011-fornewsletter

Gap is Narrowing on Immigration Reform

Various Arizona Chamber and business leaders have made numerous visits to Washington, D.C. over the years to push for reform of our nation’s badly broken immigration system. As a border state, we understand this issue well. For years, the business community in Arizona has been pressing Congress and the Administration for a secure border, workable visa and guest worker programs, nationwide employee verification programs such as E-Verify, and a way for those who did not enter the country legally but are now contributing to our state to get right with the law, especially those brought to this country as children. The failure of the federal government to act resulted in Arizona and many other states trying to do immigration reform on their own, resulting in a patchwork of policies nationwide.

But it is obvious today that all roads to reform lead through Washington, particularly in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Arizona v. U.S., which held that state attempts to regulate immigration were preempted by federal immigration law.

This past Tuesday, when a group of about 20 Arizona business, faith and law enforcement leaders visited with all nine of our U.S. House members, we were not alone. Over 600 leaders from over 40 states took to Capitol Hill to urge House Members, with a focus on the Republican majority, to support bringing legislation to the floor this year.

I had the privilege to address the gathering on Monday night at the opening reception to discuss why reform is so important and beneficial to our economy and security. Our country’s greatest comparative advantage is that the best, brightest and hardest workers from across the globe desire to work in our country.

Before we hit the Hill on Tuesday, we gathered at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to prepare. The U.S. Chamber and their Senior Vice President Randel Johnson have been the lead business organization on this entire reform effort. At the kickoff meeting we heard from conservative icon Grover Norquist, who made the free-market case for reform.  Former Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Holtz-Eakin and Rebecca Tallent of the Bipartisan Policy Center remarked that all credible studies of reform point to significant economic and budgetary benefits. Fresno County (Calif.) Sheriff Margaret Mims made a compelling case for the increased security reform could bring. Faith leaders offered a humanitarian case for reform, and our delegation was joined by a number of pastors working in coordination with a coalition called Bibles, Badges and Business.

While in Washington, we had the good fortune to run into ASU President Michael Crow, who is a strong supporter of reform. Our universities would benefit enormously from federal action. As Arizona Board of Regents President Eileen Klein says, “Our ability to produce a highly-skilled workforce and thriving research enterprise that stimulate a growing, vibrant economy for Arizona will be strengthened by balanced immigration laws that promote access to education and economic opportunities.”

Our conversations with our House delegation were positive. While it is fair to say that there were differences in approach, all of our representatives agree that our nation’s immigration system is badly broken, and I believe that they all want to have a hand in getting it fixed.

While we are very proud and thankful for the hard and good work of our two U.S. senators, John McCain and Jeff Flake, in crafting the Senate immigration proposal, it is clear that the House, as is its right, will draft its own plan and proceed with a series of bills as opposed to an omnibus. In fact, five different bills ranging from border security measures to efforts to fix some of our visa problems in the high-tech and agricultural sectors have passed two different House committees.

All agreed that we need to enhance our border security. Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery offered some suggestions on changes that would allow for him to be more effective in assisting in border security. Nationwide use of E-Verify, a system already in wide use in Arizona due to the requirements of the Legal Arizona Workers Act, is another common area of support. And all agree on the need for visa reform, although there are some differences in scope. There may be an effort in the House to expand on the number of lower-skilled visas available as compared to the Senate bill.

The most difficult issue is how to deal with the 11 million who did not enter this country legally. There is growing support for some type of legalization, and even citizenship for the Dreamers, those individuals brought to the U.S. as children. But it is hard to imagine the citizenship language in the Senate bill passing in the House.

Although there are differences between the Senate and House, those differences are narrowing. But as one of our congressmen told our group, if the House is faced with making an all or nothing choice when considering the Senate legislation, the House will go with nothing.

Hard work will be required to get a package passed. This is not naming a post office. This could be the first significant immigration legislation to pass since 1986. This will take real leadership from Congress and the White House, where our president needs to channel his inner Bill Clinton and put on the charm on Capitol Hill.

Leadership from the business community will be required, too. If the House considers reform this year, job creators from across the country should welcome the opportunity to help broker a deal between the House, Senate and President Obama. We’re doing our part in Arizona, and we’ll keep at it until a deal gets done.

Postscript: I want to thank everyone who joined our team to urge Congress to pass an immigration reform package.

Barry Broome, President and CEO, Greater Phoenix Economic Council
Lea Marquez Peterson, President and CEO, Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Bill Montgomery, Maricopa County Attorney
Jack Harris, former police chief, City of Phoenix
Mary Ann Miller, President and CEO, Tempe Chamber of Commerce
Chad Heinrich, Vice President of Public Policy and Economic Development, Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce
Vice Mayor Tony Rivero, City of Peoria
Steve Moore, President and CEO, Greater Phoenix Convention and Visitors Bureau
Pastor Gary Kinnaman
Pastor Bob Hake, Orangewood Church, Phoenix
Pastor Dan Steffen, Pure Heart Christian Fellowship, Glendale
Nan and Dick Walden, Farmers Investment Co., Sahuarita, Ariz.
Russell Johnson, President and CEO, Merchants Information Solutions, Inc.
Adam Estle, Bibles, Badges and Business
Brett Hunt, Bibles, Badges and Business

Glenn Hamer is the president and CEO of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry is committed to advancing Arizona’s competitive position in the global economy by advocating free-market policies that stimulate economic growth and prosperity for all Arizonans. 

Glenn Hamer is the president and CEO of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry is committed to advancing Arizona’s competitive position in the global economy by advocating free-market policies that stimulate economic growth and prosperity for all Arizonans.