Tag Archives: valley partnership

Perry Rehabilitation Center rendering, courtesy of Norris Design

Valley Partnership to transform local nonprofit campus

This year, the Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped (AFH) was selected as recipient of the 2014 Valley Partnership Community Project.

Each year, on one Saturday, hundreds of business leaders trade their business attire for T-shirts and gloves and help to transform a local nonprofit.  AFH applied to Valley Partnership to have its outdoor common areas updated and to build a sensory garden for its clients.  VP’s volunteers will be constructing a built-in grill, seating for outside dining, re-purposing a sports court, adding a landscape screen, and building a sensory garden.

What: Valley Partnership’s Community Project at Perry Rehabilitation Center

Where: Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped, Perry Rehabilitation Center, 3164 E. Windsor Ave., Phoenix AZ 85008

Date:  Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014

Time: 8 a.m. to noon

Who:  200 real estate executives will volunteer to plant, pour gravel and paint the center to transform the outdoor areas

For the past four months, Valley Partnership real estate professionals have dedicated their time and resources to creating a new outdoor space for the clients and families of AHF.  The planned sensory garden will feature permanent musical instruments. On Oct. 8, VP held its inaugural Rock for a Cause benefit concert. It raised more than $8,000 to purchase the musical instruments.

Valley Partnership solicits donations and engages corporate partners to assist with the Community Project each year.  This year more than 55 companies have donated more than $180,000 in services, support, and cash to rebuild the outdoor areas for AFH.

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Silencing The Impact Fee

Richard Hubbard President & CEO Valley Partnership

Richard Hubbard
President & CEO
Valley Partnership


In 2011, the legislature modified the development “impact” fee laws. First, a little “Impact Fees 101.”

Arizona has the policy “new growth pays for itself.” When a developer wants to build a project, the city requires that the developer pay fees for the municipal infrastructure to service the project. Infrastructure includes “hard costs,” sewer lines, water lines, streets and sidewalks. It also includes “soft costs,” infrastructure maintenance and public safety services.

The law requires a “nexus” between the fee and the project. Developer pay fees directly related to the “impact” of the project to municipality. Impact fees have been a constant issue between municipalities and developers. Valley Partnership has been very diligent in protecting commercial developers from unreasonable impact fees.

Commercial projects have generally not been charged fees for residential amenities. These are “Parks and Library Fees.” If you build an office or retail center, the workers and guests will not use parks or libraries. There is no “nexus” between the fee and the commercial project.

In 2011, despite opposition, laws were revised to require municipalities charge impact fees in all categories to all projects. Commercial developers were now responsible to pay parks and library fees. However, the “nexus” requirement still exists.

On behalf of the commercial development industry, as each city revises their impact fee program, Valley Partnership has been arguing that, if commercial projects must pay a parks and library fee, the lack of “nexus” requires that the amount of the fee would be little or nothing at all. People that use commercial projects do not visit parks and libraries. Developers should not have to pay for those amenities.

Working in partnership with municipalities, Valley Partnership has been successful with several cities to keep parks and library fees extremely low or at zero. This permits cities to comply with the law, but not charge an inappropriate fee to commercial projects. The collaborative effort between Valley Partnership and our municipal partners is a great example of fulfilling our mission as “The Valley of the Sun’s Premier Advocacy Group for Responsible Development.

The finale was a version of “Hey Jealousy,” made famous by the Tempe-based Gin Blossoms. Scott Johnson (center) of Honeygirl is a member of the Gin Blossoms. Ty Lusk (right) also played on the final number.

Valley Partnership raises donations to the tune of $8,000

Valley Partnership’s inaugural Rock For A Cause benefit concert raised more than $8,000 to purchase outdoor musical instruments for 2014 Community Project recipient Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped (AFH).

Detail shot of instruments between acts.

Detail shot of instruments between acts.

The concert at the Monarch Theatre in Downtown Phoenix drew an estimated crowd of 300. More than 250 tickets were sold in advance. A total of 34 musicians performed, including Valley bands Soul Country, Heartlyn Rae, Ty Lusk, Ruca, The Nate Nathan Band and Honeygirl.

Inviting local musicians associated with Valley Partnership to perform in a benefit raising money to build a sensory experience at Perry Rehabilitation Center that includes a musical instrument garden seemed like a natural fit,” said Community Project Committee Co-Chair Dena Jones. “I am blown away by the support we received from our partners, the talented musicians and our generous sponsors.

The community project planning committee made our inaugural fundraiser for the 27th community project a huge success. I have already been approached to start planning the next one,” Jones said.

Crowd shot inside the Monarch Theatre in downtown Phoenix.

Crowd shot inside the Monarch Theatre in downtown Phoenix.

In addition to ticket sales, money also was raised at the concert through a “50-50” raffle and silent auction. Auction items included hotel stays, restaurant gift cards, courtside seats at a Suns game, and autographed sports memorabilia.

Valley Partnership, which represents the commercial, industrial and master-planned real estate development industry in Metro Phoenix, undertakes a community project each year. Rock For A Cause raised money to build a sensory garden that includes permanent, outdoor musical instruments and other therapeutically integrated elements as part of the project.

The goal of the 27th community project is to enhance the quality of life for those served at AFH which will include many therapeutic elements, a sensory garden, a built-in grill, seating for outside dining, the re-purposing of a sports court and a landscape screen. Community Project day is Nov. 8 at the Perry Rehabilitation Center, 3164 E. Windsor Ave., Phoenix.

The huge success of Rock For A Cause is due to the tremendous effort of Dena, her entire committee and the volunteer musicians,” said Richard Hubbard, President and CEO of Valley Partnership. “That success will only be surpassed by the great effort Valley Partnership will put into the 2014 Community Project at Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped. We are looking forward to it.”

AFH is a human services organization whose primary mission is to provide quality, individualized services to those with physical or intellectual challenges in the least restrictive environment.  It offers programs for adults with physical or intellectual challenges to assist them in achieving desired outcomes.

One of Valley Partnership’s cornerstones is community service. Each year, it selects a non-profit organization that can benefit from the skills, efforts and supplies provided by its partners to renovate and enhance facilities for children and those in need. Over the past 27 years, Valley Partnership has contributed more than $3.5 million to the community through these projects.

Valley musicians, commercial real estate industry rock for a cause

rock-for-a-cause
Valley musicians will come together on Wednesday, Oct. 8, for “Rock for a Cause,” a benefit concert and battle of the bands in support of the Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped (AFH).

The lineup features Phoenix favorites Honeygirl and Heartlyn Rae. The event is from 5 to 9 p.m. at the Monarch Theatre in Downtown Phoenix.

One hundred percent of the proceeds will go to AFH as part of the 2014 Valley Partnership Community Project. Other performers include Ruca, Soul Country, Ty Lusk, Bill Lucerne and The Nate Nathan Band. Presale tickets are $25 and available by clicking the Events tab at www.valleypartnership.org.

If you’re going:

AFH is a human services organization whose primary mission is to provide quality, individualized services to those with physical or intellectual challenges in the least restrictive environment. It offers programs for adults with physical or intellectual challenges to assist them in achieving desired outcomes. AFH has successfully helped the adults it serves find community employment in landscaping, restaurants, retail stores, hardware distribution and supermarkets. Center-based employment includes assembly, inspection, collation, mail services, sorting and packaging.

Valley Partnership, which represents the commercial, industrial and master planned real estate development industry in Metro Phoenix, undertakes a community project each year. “Rock for a Cause” will raise money to build a sensory garden that includes permanent, outdoor musical instruments and other therapeutically integrated elements as part of the project. In addition to the sensory garden, the Valley Partnership build day, which will take place Nov. 8 at the Perry Rehabilitation Center located at 3164 E. Windsor Ave. in Phoenix, will include constructing a built-in grill, seating for outside dining, the re-purposing of a sports court and a landscape screen.

One of Valley Partnership’s cornerstones is community service. Each year, it selects a non-profit organization that can benefit from the skills, efforts and supplies provided by its partners to renovate and enhance facilities for children and those in need. Over the past 25 years, Valley Partnership has contributed more than $3.5 million to the community through these projects. For its 2013 Community Project, Valley Partnership selected Save the Family Foundation’s Escobedo at Verde Vista Affordable Housing Development in Mesa.

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Valley Partnership Amplifies Voice of Responsible Development

Karrin Taylor

Karrin Taylor

Vanessa Hickman

Vanessa Hickman

Carolyn Oberholtzer

Carolyn Oberholtzer

Richard Hubbard

Richard Hubbard

When municipalities have development-related issue at stake, one of the first organizations they call is Valley Partnership. Advocacy for responsible development is the driving force of the 27-year-old organization, which often takes a stance on behalf of its busy members. The issues range from state legislation and statewide issues such as land reform efforts, Government Property Lease Excise Tax (GPLET), copper theft and economics of Luke Air Force Base. Leading into 2014, the organzation is in the midst of community district financing.
Many members have taken turns sitting on VP’s advocacy committees, with a focus on city and county to federal influence, but no one has more ears to the ground than DMB Associate’s Karrin Taylor. Taylor is the immediate past chair of the board and has sat on multiple committees.

“(VP’s advocacy) started out many years ago working at the local level and coming out of an era when anything related to development or developers wasn’t seen in best light,” says Taylor. The most robust is the City County Committee, Taylor says, which is represented by a laundry list of the Valley’s municipalities. About four years ago, Valley Partnership got involved on a federal level with the Clean Water and Endangered Species acts. The committee has since turned into a roundtable for the congressional offices as well as a forum for educating members of the development community, Taylor observes.

“Through that legacy, we’ve become the voice of the development community and local jurisdictions. Before they proceed with ordinances, they call us,” she says. “Valley Partnership really represents the entire industry. We’re seen as the one that has to look at things holistically.” Valley Partnership’s working relationship with the cities is based on communication and trust, says the organization’s CEO and President Richard Hubbard.

“Using regular meetings between private sector developers and municipal staffers, we are able to discuss and resolve potential issues related to commercial real estate regulation prior to those issues becoming problems. Through more than 27 years of this process and the resolutions of dozens of complicated issues related to oversight of commercial development, experience has led both developers and the cities to rely on each other’s expertise with the common goal of effectively building quality projects.”

As mentioned earlier, one of Valley Partnership’s slogans is that it advocates for developer issues so its members can focus on business. When an issue arises, Taylor says, Hubbard will give a “call to arms” so members are aware of an issue and committee members can work on an industry response. “We rely on them to take the leadership role and managing issues as they arise,” Taylor says. “The relevance of the organization as a reasonable and educated voice of issues facing the development community (is its greatest achievement).”

Taylor serves as President of the Foundation for Environmental and Economic Progress (FEEP), which represents major landowners and stakeholders across the country in the advancement of balanced federal environmental law and policy on endangered species acts and wetlands issues. Hubbard served as the Deputy Arizona State Land Commissioner and during his time generated more than $1B in sale and lease revenue for the trust’s beneficiaries, Arizona Public Education. It was the most profitable period of the department in its century-long existence. In a similar vein, current Arizona State Land Commissioner Vanessa Hickman has been on the board of Valley Partnership for 2.5 years and prior to that was a member in the private sector.
Among the organization’s most significant advances at the legislature, says Hubbard, is the years-long work to preserve the GPLET.

“Our developer partners have used the GPLET tool to develop some of the most important real estate projects in the Valley,” he says, adding, “We are also the biggest watchdog of preserving reasonable impact fees applicable to commercial real estate. Valley Partnership has also worked to support other economic development incentives designed to bring new employers to Arizona including the formation of the Arizona Commerce Authority.”

What comes to mind for Hickman was the northern expansion of the Black Mountain Freeway. Valley Partnership backed the development due to transportation’s role in allowing for economic growth and clearing traffic congestion. On that issue, Valley Partnership drafted a letter to the City of Phoenix advocating for the project to move forward.
Valley Partnership has also taken a stance on the extension of long-term leases. The organization advocated the legislature change the statutes so that during the recession people could pay their rent with more time.

Land-use and entitlement lawyer Carolyn Oberholtzer, partner at Bergin, Frakes, Smalley & Oberholzter, has been a Valley Partnership member since 2004 and has sat on the board for four years. She works with municipalities and counties on development project phases and has handled entitlements for some of Arizona’s largest masterplanned communities, commercial, industrial and renewable energy facilities. She was retained by Valley Partnership in 2007 to work on a parking calculations issue in Buckeye that she says could have potentially hurt retail development in the city. Oberholtzer worked in tandem with VP’s on-staff lobbyist.

Oberholtzer, with Hickman, sits on the City County Committee and worked on impact fees and what the effect would be on large land owners and the ability to plan on infrastructure in the future. The committee worked diligently, Hickman says, on what the legislation would look like. “We really engaged with this latest go around with the impact-fee legislation,” Oberholtzer adds. “Some of the stakeholder groups were bitterly divided. We got involved to iron out a solution. We’re living with the results. It’s not perfect legislation but that’s where we try to be most helpful. Where there are areas of disagreement between developers and municipalities.”

“I think the members, we, all have our respective missions and goals for the organizations we represent,” Hickman says. “We live in Arizona and we want this to be a beautiful place to work and raise our families, so to understand that development happens in a progressive way and is thoughtful and well-planned and not done in a way that will adversely impact our community partners and state.”

Scottsdale_AZ

The West’s most developable town

Valley Partnership has announced the topic for its upcoming monthly breakfast on Friday, Aug. 22. This month’s program will feature an update on current real estate conditions in Scottsdale, Ariz. Panelists will discuss what’s been happening in “The West’s Most ‘Western’ Town” as well as future opportunities for the commercial real estate and development community.

The Scottsdale update panel will feature Danielle Casey, economic development director for the City of Scottsdale; Jim Keeley, senior vice president with Colliers International; and Jonathan Keyser, founder of Keyser Co. City of Scottsdale Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane will also be the featured “Mayor’s Minute” panel and will give a brief update on current development projects within the city.

“The City of Scottsdale is one of the most dynamic centers of economic development within the Valley,” said Richard Hubbard, president and CEO of Valley Partnership. “Scottsdale has proven to be a desirable location for companies looking to locate and/or expand within the Valley, and as the economy continues to improve it is important the commercial real estate and development communities are educated on potential opportunities and challenges that will come from Scottsdale’s business growth.”

In addition to the panel the Community Project Committee will feature a “hands on” display of instruments to be installed in the sensory section at the site of this year’s recipient, Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped. Members may also order engraved bricks.

The Valley Partnership Monthly Breakfast will take place Friday, August 22nd at the Phoenix Country Club located at 2901 North 7th St. in Phoenix. Registration begins at 7 a.m.; program begins at 7:45 a.m. To register, visit www.valleypartnership.org and click on the “Monthly Breakfast” tab.

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Why more companies are coming to the Valley

When it comes to recruiting new companies to relocate, expand or begin operations in Arizona, it’s all about “getting in the game and the closing the deal.”

That was the message delivered at Valley Partnership’s June breakfast before a robust audience at the Phoenix Country Club.

Christine Mackay, Economic Development Director for the City of Chandler served as moderator. The panel featured Justin Meritt, Senior Investment Professional, Southwest Valley Partners; Auguste Goldman, Chief People Office, Go Daddy; and John Lenio, Economist and Managing Director, CBRE.

As the Arizona economy improves, Valley communities are successfully recruiting new companies to bring their business here. CBRE’s Lenio said favorable economic conditions nationally are a key: leading indicators such as the stock market are up, consumer debt is down, net worth is up, and although housing prices have increased they have also leveled off.
How is Arizona doing it?

“It’s all about jobs,” Lenio said. “Real estate is an enabler in the site selection process. In the end it’s all about getting in the game and closing the deal.”

Meritt cited the Continuum development along the Price Corridor in Chandler as a project in which several entities joined forces and talents. In her opening remarks, Mackay spoke of a “pipeline of quality developments” in Chandler. Continuum, Meritt said, fit the bill.

“It’s a quality business park in one of the top office markets in the Valley,” he said.

Goldman shared the success of local company Go Daddy and showed why “we win in Arizona. Talent, impact, culture, and quality of life.”

Goldman said Go Daddy works with instate institutions of learning including ASU, UA, NAU and Thunderbird. When it comes to company culture, the thought is to change the global economy to small business.

“It’s something we should all invest in,” Goldman said.

>> Community Project update



In lieu of the Mayor’s Minute, the Community Project Committee shared two presentations with the audience. Robyn Ratcliff, director at 2014 Community Project recipient Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped addressed the partners. She was followed by a heartwarming rendition of “Good Night Irene” by Bill, one of the clients that AFH serves. Bill received a standing ovation and moved many of the partners. This was the perfect way to introduce the sponsorship opportunities available for the 27th annual community project.
Several partners have already generously signed on to sponsor this year’s project including Norris Design, Rick Engineering, Shift Redevelopment, Small Giants and Cushman & Wakefield of Arizona.

“I received several calls and emails after the breakfast from partners who wanted to support this year’s project and enhance the quality of life for those served by AFH,” said committee co-chair Dena Jones. “I feel so fortunate to work with partners who are committed to giving back to the community and leaving a legacy.”

The 50/50 raffle included four prime tickets to a Dbacks game courtesy of CBRE. The winner donated the cash back to the community project. Another partner came forward after the raffle winner was announced and pledged his company’s Dbacks tickets for the July raffle.

Photo provided by 123RF.com

Save the Family, Valley Partnership, and Gorman & Co. saw a promising future for a large population of Mesa’s homeless and poverty-stricken community in the Escobedo at Verde Vista development.

Community project lays foundation for homeless, poverty-stricken

Last November, members of the commercial real estate industry helped turn a dilapidated, World War II housing facility into one where a community can thrive.

Volunteers move rubber chips made from recycled tires across the playground.

Volunteers move rubber chips made from recycled tires across the playground.

Just a few months prior to the completion of Valley Partnership’s 2013 community project, the Escobedo at Verde Vista development, it was an abandoned complex that had fallen victim to poverty. Where others saw hopeless housing, Save the Family, Valley Partnership, and Gorman & Co. saw a promising future for a large population of Mesa’s homeless and poverty-stricken community. The three put their heads together and hands to work to bring light and life to this Mesa neighborhood that had been left in the dark.

For the past 26 years, Valley Partnership has selected a nonprofit organization to be the recipient of its community service project. Its 2013 selection was Save the Family, an organization that provides housing and life skills to the homeless and impoverished in the Phoenix Metro.

Long-time community project committee members Ed Hansen, Morgan Realty Advisors, and Janelle Schick, Schick Design Group.

Long-time community project committee members Ed Hansen, Morgan Realty Advisors, and Janelle Schick, Schick Design Group.

Even with 25 years and $3.5M of community projects up its sleeve, the Escobedo project brought new challenges and “firsts.” To begin, it was Valley Partnership’s first ground-up redevelopment project. The existing foundations were crumbling and had to be completely rebuilt.

“The original units were built to be housing for British and black Americans that were training at Falcon Field during World War II,” says Jacki Taylor, CEO of Save the Family Foundation. Post-war, the units served as segregated housing until eight years ago, when the City of Mesa began evacuating the buildings because of decreasing structural stability. Time and money were needed to get the housing to a habitable state and that is where “the dream team” came in.

Save the Family CEO Jacki Taylor, left, project co-chair Dena Jones, center, and Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Program Associate Erin Goodman.

Save the Family CEO Jacki Taylor, left, project co-chair Dena Jones, center, and Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Program Associate Erin Goodman.

This development would require extensive construction, which brought Valley Partnership another “first” — the need for city approval and permits for a re-design. Since this was the first community project Valley Partnership had done in the City of Mesa, there were even more new rules and hoops to jump through. Despite the additional work required by all parties involved, the rebuilding of the Washington-Escobedo neighborhood “came together better than we could have hoped for,” said project co-chair Dena Jones.

The 70 units built were filled almost immediately after construction was completed. A waiting list for families hoping to join the community continues to grow. This project “totally changed the complexion of this neighborhood,” said Taylor. What used to be boarded-up, graffiti-laden and crumbling buildings is now a community of homes, classrooms, computer labs and gym facilities.

Logan Simpson Design architects Jeff Lothner and Jay Hicks look over a blueprint.

Logan Simpson Design architects Jeff Lothner and Jay Hicks look over a blueprint.

“We were all committed to making a difference and working together,” said Jones. “The teams from Gorman, Save the Family, City of Mesa, Tofel Construction and the project sponsors were so wonderful to work with and I cannot thank them enough for giving us the opportunity to take part in the legacy of Escobedo at Verde Vista.”

And the public has definitely noticed. Brian Swanton, AZ Market President for Gorman and Company Inc. said the Escobedo project “has been lauded for its success in revitalizing a boarded-up and vacant eyesore in the middle of this single-family neighborhood.”

What is in store for Valley Partnership’s 2014 project? They are in the final stages of deciding whom to partner up with for this year, but Jones knows that whomever they chose, Valley Partnership will be taking much of what they learned from the Escobedo project with them. “Our partnership is comprised of so many talented and hard working professionals committed to giving back. Engaging the committee members during the time we spend together and growing our committee will continue to be a focus for 2014.”

Valley Partnership Board of Directors

Valley Partnership Board of Directors

The "Class of 2014" advocates visit DMB Associates' masterplanned community Eastmark.

It takes two

Valley principals host young professionals in inaugural advocates program

A look around the room at a Valley Partnership Friday Morning Breakfast (FMB) reveals a who’s who of Arizona’s commercial real estate industry. You’ll see seasoned professionals sitting next to up-and-comers, and though these are an effective networking tool, Valley Partnership took the concept to the next level.

It created the Valley Partnership Advocates Program for young professionals. The program is a nine-month-long course for a “class” of 20 people under the age of 35 to meet with a new industry leader every month.

The inaugural program began last August and has included sessions hosted by prominent figures from DMB Associates, Inc., Vestar, Arizona State Land Department, Ryan Companies, Sunbelt Holdings, Evergreen Development, ASU and Macerich/WDP Partners. Many of the sessions were hosted by board members, including one held during a board meeting. “I did not understand the power of Valley Partnership and the people behind it until I attended that board meeting,” says advocate Nicole Mass, 35, Kitchell’s director of marketing.

The feeling is mutual. Bruce Pomeroy, founding principal at Evergreen Devco, has worked in the industry for 40 years. During that time, he has trained many young hires and has taught classes for the International Council of Shopping Centers. Pomeroy says of the session he hosted at Centerpointe in Goodyear that “the ‘students’ were very engaged and asked good questions.”

“I believe the most important issue was that the advocates wanted to spend more time with the developers during each monthly event,” says Vice President and General Counsel to Maven Universal Brett Hopper, who helped design the program. “We want to provide the advocates a greater opportunity to interact with senior executives and create long-lasting relationships.”

Stephanie Stephens, 27, marketing and project coordinator at Buesing, says the mentors emphasized the importance of getting involved in the real estate community. That typically starts with something as simple as the monthly Valley Partnership breakfasts, where Stephens heard about the program. Easton Mullen, 37, started his general contracting company Mullen Construction and Development in 2006 and has since built capital with the goal of becoming a developer. The advocates program, he says, created a foundation of contacts to use while his company evolves. “You can’t call these people up on the phone,” he says, “but if you’re part of the program, you can.”

The mentors encouraged community involvement and engagement within Valley Partnership’s committees and leadership roles. CBRE Sales Assistant Chris Marchildon, 28, was approached by board members at the suggestion of CBRE Executive Vice President Barry Gabel, about joining Valley Partnership’s Advocates Program.

sidebar“One of the first things I was told in this business was to ‘be a sponge,’” he says. “The second was to develop as many good relationships as you can along the way. Through the program, I was certainly provided the opportunity to learn success stories from the ground up as well as the chance to ‘soak up’ as much information as I could.”

Recent Denver transplant Kelly Kaminskas, 34, senior vice president at FirstBank, used the advocates program as an introduction to the industry. “It would have taken me years to piece together the information I received by being part of this group,” she says.

Tuition is $150. Applications are available on Valley Partnership’s website through July.

Marina Heights is a development partnership between Ryan Companies and Sunbelt Holdings. Fellow Valley Partnership member Cushman & Wakefield was awarded the leasing assignment.

A valley of partners

Partner-to-partner transactions building up the valley
one project at a time

When Valley Partnership was founded 27 years ago, it was on the principles of responsible development. It has since grown to thousands of members throughout the commercial real estate community — from subcontractors to some of the largest developers in Arizona.

Eastmark includes a partnership between DMB Associates and Marham COntracting Co.

Eastmark includes a partnership between DMB Associates and Markham Contracting Co.

“In 2014 and beyond, Valley Partnership developer companies are the leaders of almost every major commercial real estate project announced, including Marina Heights, the numerous announcements of deals at Eastmark, and Liberty Center at Rio Salado,” says Valley Partnership President and CEO Richard Hubbard.

The members have rallied behind the idea of partnership, Hubbard says.

“These developers use Valley Partnership partners for all construction disciplines related to the project including planning, design, architecture, general contracting, engineering and even law and accounting,” Hubbard says. “Many of those ‘partner-to-partner’ transactions have come from long-standing relationships created through Valley Partnership. I would say that every level of partner in Valley Partnership, from board member to sole proprietor, is participating in the current commercial real estate building activity in the Valley.”

Some companies, such as Evergreen Devco, take the partner-to-partner very seriously.

Valley Partnership Chair of the Board Doug Leventhal is the principal and COO of Evergreen Devco. Though Evergreen has focused much of its recent work in Denver, the company finds exclusive value in partnership with fellow VP members for Arizona projects.

“I can say that for all our Arizona work, we tend to work exclusively with the companies that see the value in Valley Partnership and either are active members or active sponsors,” Leventhal says. “Our general contractors, for example, need to be members or sponsors almost as a prerequisite to getting our business. Our architects, engineers, attorneys and title companies need to be members of Valley Partnership — or have a good reason why they are not! It’s important to Evergreen that we collectively support Valley Partnership since we all benefit from its mission to promote responsible development in the Valley. We are all connected in this unique way.”

Liberty Center at Rio Salado is a partnership between Liberty Property Trust and Markham Contracting Co.

Liberty Center at Rio Salado is a partnership between Liberty Property Trust and Markham Contracting Co.

That unique connection, as DMB Associates President Charley Freericks sees it involves Valley Partnership’s advocacy role for developers as well as a genuine passion for making Arizona a great place to live.

“Valley Partnership understands that real estate isn’t the only driver of the economy,” says Freericks. “We are the beneficiaries of a strong and growing economy and it’s in our interest to make this a great place to live.”

Freericks, who has been a member for 10 years, served on the board of directors, was chairman in 2009, and has sat on multiple committees.

Most of DMB Associates’ partners at the developers’ 6,000-acre masterplanned community of Eastmark – and around the Valley – are Valley Partnership members, Freericks says.

“Over the years, we have worked with so many contractors, consultants and service providers who are members it would be hard to name them all,” he says. “In fact it might be difficult to find any that aren’t members.”

Valley Partnership has multiple avenues for paving those partnerships. There are 10 committees, including one for an annual golf tournament and a community building project. One of the most popular and frequent member events, is the Friday Morning Breakfasts — a monthly morning panel discussion about an industry trend featuring local experts.

Freericks reflected on a breakfast about the impact and trade partnership Arizona has with Canada as a particularly helpful one for his masterplanned communities of Eastmark and Victory at Verrado, which target Canadian homebuyers.

“Valley Partnership attracts important speakers and hosts debates of candidates for state and local offices which helps me make better informed decisions,” he says. “The Valley Partnership advocacy team was a huge help to the Fighter Country Partnership efforts to bring the F-35 mission to Luke. This will impact our economy for generations to come. Valley Partnership’s role as the champion for moderate regulation has impacted all of our properties over the years and will continue to do so.”

Heather Markham, vice president of Markham Contracting Co., says her company has been a member of Valley Partnership since 1992 and is also a Stewardship Sponsor. Markham has attended breakfasts for the last five years and is one of the students in Valley Partnership’s inaugural Young Advocates Program. As a co-chair of the Community Project Committee, Markham says she also appreciate’s Valley Partnership’s commitment to networking and giving back to the community.

“I believe this involvement in the community is critical personally as well as professionally for everyone,” she says.

Markham has been self performing grading, paving and wet utilities civil infrastructure in the Southwest since 1977. Though Valley Partnership has only been around since 1987, Markham says the company has worked with many current Valley Partnership companies for nearly four decades. Partners include DMB Associates (Verrado and Eastmark), Macerich (Sonoran Crossing), Sunbelt Holdings (Vistancia), APS, Grayhawk Development, Lennar, Vintage Partners, MT Builders, HilgartWilson, Pulte, Atwell, Dibble Engineering, Wood Patel & Associates, Hoskin & Ryan, Siteworks, Speedie & Associates, Trench Shore Rentals, Alliance Bank of Arizona and Cemex.

“Valley Partnership plays a very strong role in responsible development of the commercial real estate community and provides an excellent venue for all the stakeholders in the process to come together and discuss issues and concerns as well as success stories,” she says. “This promotes strong partnerships between cities, counties, towns, state, land owners, developers, contractors, architects, engineers and every trade partner involved in making Arizona a great place to live and work.”

vp

Meet the leaders in Valley Partnership

Much of the Valley’s growth would not be possible without the partnerships and advocacy supported by nonprofit Valley Partnership.

Chris-AnaradianChris Anaradian
Development Services Director, Town of Queen Creek
It’s Queen Creek’s time in the sun, boasts the town’s Development Services Director Chris Anaradian. Permit activity is “out of sight” and he cites his Valley Partnership involvement as a key ingredient while the town grows into its own.

“The situational awareness that Queen Creek gains from Valley Partnership is essential,” says Anaradian, who sits on Valley Partnership’s Board of Directors. “Knowing the current areas of focus and growth that our private partners are focused on helps us plan and build a better government and community for all. Having a voice when new legislation and alliances are being formed helps us better prepare to fund and administer the services our customers have come to expect and deserve.”

Anaradian is the former community development director and development services manager for the City of Tempe. He managed the 220-acre Tempe Town Lake and 500-acre Rio Salado Project during their initial five years. He also helped modernize multiple permitting and regulatory agencies and advocated for many developer-friendly shifts within the city, including those that precluded the Tempe light rail. Anaradian now has watched Queen Creek come through the economic recovery.

“It is now Queen Creek’s time in the sun, and so many opportunities lie ahead,” says Anaradian. “Our wash and trail system is poised to unite huge swaths of our community and become a defining geographic feature of life in Queen Creek. Large tracts of undeveloped hillside residential property are into entitlement, some of the last and most majestic in the Southeast Valley.”

Tim-BrislinTim Brislin
Vice President, Harvard Investments
Tim Brislin, an on-and-off member of Valley Partnership since 2004 who currently sits on the Board of Directors, has used organization’s networking opportunities to broaden Harvard Investment’s exposure and partnership options.

Harvard Investments is a land investment and masterplanned community development firm.
“Harvard is laser focused on executing its vision and plans for its masterplanned communities in Mesa, Queen Creek/San Tan Valley, the West Valley and in Prescott,” Brislin says. “Our Mesa project, Cadence at Gateway, is very exciting and we are making great progress on our first residential phase, as well as getting traction on our retail and high density residential components much earlier than anticipated.”

In 2007, Brislin welcomed his first son and ended his “five-year job interview” with Harvard Investments.

“In both cases I was at the starting line staring at a wide open track. Today, in addition to my wonderful wife and two boys, and thanks to Harvard’s long standing market reputation, the faith of our partners and hard work, we built a high quality portfolio of assets that we will harvest for years to come.”

What many don’t know about Harvard is that its Canadian parent company, The Hill Companies, is a major commercial developer of office and retail, Brislin says. The company has expansion plans to include industrial, office and multi-family assets.

“Our current planning efforts are highly focused on demographic trends locally and nationally and how we plan our communities for the long-term based on who are buyers are, what products they want and what type of community they will embrace,” Brislin says. “There are shifts going on that affect all aspects of the real estate development business.”

Kristina-LockeKristina Locke
Marketing/Business Development Manager, Hoskin Ryan Consultants, Inc.
Looking for the latest news on the golf tournament? Kristina Locke sits on the committee for two-year member Hoskin Ryan Consultants, Inc. Locke comes to Valley Partnership with more than a decade of marketing, advertising and business development achievements for Hoskin Ryan and its clients.

Hoskin Ryan finished off 2013 with four new clients. Locke is confident being a member of Valley Partnership will lead to meeting more potential clients.

“It does take a little while for people to get to know you and trust your firm,” she says. “We have formed great relationships and were educated on many different industry trends.”

One particular trend is healthcare. In 2013, Valley Partnership held a healthcare Friday Morning Breakfast attended by 250 members with speakers from Banner Health, Dignity and smaller medical office building develpers.

Jenifer-Davis-LuntJenifer Davis Lunt
Partner, Davis Enterprises
Davis Enterprises joined Valley Partnership last January — a big step for the closely held family business. Though Davis is one of the smaller development companies in the Valley and has a long history in the Valley, it has been a two-year sponsor of the organization. Davis Enterprises is actively involved in the identification, acquisition, development and management of real estate properties in Arizona.

Jenifer Davis Lunt became managing partner following an award-addled tenure at CBRE, where she became the first female at the Phoenix office named “Rookie of the Year,” for selling more than 100 properties totally more than $675M in value and 2.5MSF. In 2005, Davis Lunt was named CBRE’s No. 1 Investment Broker. The following year, her father retired from Davis Enterprises and named her partner and principal of a business her grandfather started.

“We are most proud of contributions Davis has made to the revitalization of Central Phoenix including the SWC of 7th Ave & McDowell, 4700 N. Central and Melrose Marketplace,” Davis Lunt says. The company is looking forward to the redevelopment of 21st Avenue and Deer Valley Road and 1015 S. Rural Rd., near ASU’s main campus.

Along those lines, Davis Lunt says a trend or issue she would like to see addressed by Valley Partnership is how the City of Phoenix can become more pedestrian, rail and bike dependent to allow for more retail and housing development in the urban core.

Rusty-MitchellRetired Lt. Col. Rusty Mitchell
Director of Luke Air Force Base Community Initiatives Team
Rusty Mitchell, director of Luke Air Force Base Community Initiatives Team, has been an ex-officio board member at Valley Partnership since 2005 and is the primary liason between the Air Force base, nine municipalities, Maricpa County and state officials.

“(Valley Partnership) has enabled me to network with major developers and discuss development issues in areas that we conduct flight operations,” he says. “This communication enables developers and landowners to be better informed of state statutes for compatible land use before they obligate time and money to a particular project.”

The partnership has been mutually beneficial. Before retiring, Mitchell served 22 years in the Air Force as a fighter pilot. It is through his community involvement and history with the Air Force that Mitchell has managed to bring enduring economic development to the base and Arizona.
“The over-whelming community support of the mission of Luke AFB has been recognized by the senior leadership of the Air Force and was a significant contributing factor in its selection as the largest F-35 training base and the recipient of an eventual 144 F-35’s,” he says.

The selection of Luke to be the primary pilot training center for the nation’s most advanced fighter will ensure the existence of Luke AFB for many decades to come, Mitchell says.
“Not only is Luke critical in the nation’s defense, producing the world’s greatest fighter pilots, but the fact that it contributes approximately $2B to the state’s economy every year will continue to infuse the state with much needed economic power.”

VP2

Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped recipient of Valley Partnership Community Project

Arizona Foundation for the Handicapped (AFH) today was selected as recipient of the 2014 Valley Partnership Community Project. The event is Nov. 15 at Perry Rehabilitation Center, 3164 E. Windsor Ave.

AFH is a human services organization whose primary mission is to provide quality, individualized services to those with physical or intellectual challenges in the least restrictive environment. It offers programs for adults with physical or intellectual challenges to assist them in achieving desired outcomes.

“This is a great opportunity for our people with disabilities to be able to have access to their own community, and be able to go outside and enjoy a safe environment,” said AFH center Director Robyn Ratcliff. “Several years back we began to develop a dream for our property. We just weren’t able to do it when the economy went in the other direction. This is huge. We are very excited.”

AFH has successfully helped the adults it serves find community employment in landscaping, restaurants, retail stores, hardware distribution and supermarkets. Center-based employment includes assembly, inspection, collation, mail services, sorting and packaging.

“We were so excited that the Board of Directors voted unanimously to select AFH as the 2014 community project recipient that we threw them (AFH) a surprise party to share this great news at our last committee meeting,” said Valley Partnership Project Co-chair Dena Jones, Director of Business Development for Shift Redevelopment.

“I believe that AFH won over many hearts on the selection committee because they work with the happiest people on earth who are truly appreciative of the smallest things in life,” Jones said.

Work at the center will include constructing a built-in grill, seating for outside dining, the re-purposing of a sports court, a landscape screen, and a sensory garden.

The other finalists for the 2014 Community Project were Boys Hope Girls Hope and Valley Life.

One of Valley Partnership’s cornerstones is community service. Each year, it selects a non-profit organization that can benefit from the skills, efforts and supplies provided by its partners to renovate and enhance facilities for children and those in need. Over the past 25 years, Valley Partnership has contributed more than $3.5 million to the community through these projects. For its 2013 Community Project, Valley Partnership selected Save the Family Foundation’s Escobedo at Verde Vista Affordable Housing Development in Mesa.
Perry-Rehabilitation-Center-4

Dena Jones joins Shift Redevelopment

Dena Jones, HeadshotDena Jones joined Shift Redevelopment as the director of business development.

In the business development role, Jones will expand the relationships within Shift’s target markets. She is responsible for all sales activity in the company and ensuring the company reaches its growth objectives.  With the construction industry recovery in the Phoenix market, Shift is forecast to more than triple its size in 2014.  In addition to actively fostering new relationships and clients for the business, Jones is charged with hiring, developing, and training the company’s growing sales force through marketing and communication.  She serves on the executive management team and networks heavily with professional associations that support the commercial and residential real estate industries.

Jones also spearheads the philanthropic endeavors and community involvement for Shift Redevelopment. Community involvement includes nonprofit work on projects, serving on leadership boards and volunteering for charitable causes. She is the community project co-chair for Valley Partnership.

“Shift is repositioning itself for future growth.  We are excited to have Dena Jones on board as an integral member of our team. Her knowledge and her experience will help us position ourselves for anticipated growth,” said Shift Redevelopment’s Managing Director Jim Bailey.
Shift Redevelopment is a full-service general contracting and real estate development Firm that specializes in strategically optimizing commercial and residential real estate.

Since its inception, Shift Redevelopment has earned a reputation as the construction service company of choice for commercial buildings, multifamily communities, and HOA’s.  Their specialty lies in repositioning existing assets through capital improvement projects and tenant improvements (i.e… exterior painting, stucco, asphalt, roofing, flooring, interior renovations).
Shift’s competitive advantage comes by self-performing much of the work.  By keeping their price point competitive and quality controls tight, Shift is an attractive alternative for companies considering taking on large projects in house.  We offer the amenities and accountability of one point of contact with the savings of not having to manage the project.

Most recently, Shift has expanded their services to include emergency fire and water cleanup and restoration.  Their personnel are IICRC trained and certified.

The families of Save the Family hand painted tiles that will be installed into the entry walls of the project.

Valley Partnership Community Project Revitalizes Neighborhood Space

More than 200 volunteers from the commercial real estate community and members of Valley Partnership took over the Save the Family Foundation’s Escobedo at Verde Vista Affordable Housing Development construction site on Saturday morning to lay sod, paint sidewalk games, plant trees and spruce up the exteriors of the community’s entryway.

Valley Partnership has a 26-year history of community service projects, but this year marked a few firsts for the organization. It was the first service project in Mesa and its first ground-up redevelopment project, on which it collaborated with developer City of Mesa and general contractor Tofel.

Courtesy of Valley Partnership

Courtesy of Valley Partnership

“We were so inspired by their vision for this project and they brought partners, resources, talent and time to make it a reality. It’s been a joy and a pleasure to work with Valley Partnership,” said Jacki Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of Save the Family.

Save the Family operates nearly 200 transitional and low-income housing units in the East Valley and is helping revitalize the Washington-Escobedo neighborhood that has declined due to an excess of vandalism and poverty. Escobedo at Verde Vista is a $29M public-private partnership that includes the construction of 126 new units and an education and resource building.

More than 45 corporate and 16 individuals donated a total of $100,000 to create a formal entry to the housing community. Ryan Companies, NAI Horizon, Caretaker Landscape

Volunteers laid more than 7,000 SF of sod.

Volunteers laid more than 7,000 SF of sod.

and Tree Management, Adolfson and Peterson, Cushman and Wakefield and DMB Associates were among many companies with representative volunteers at Saturday’s event — a culmination of nine months of planning.

Valley Partnership is an association full of leaders who are solution minded, who impact the community on a global level by partnering together to pay it forward. I am extremely proud to co-chair the community service project committee because it has given me the opportunity to be a part of something that is much bigger. Together, we have aligned our skills in a way that will impact the community for generations,” said Dena Jones, director of project development of Caretaker Landscape and co-chair of the Community Project Committee for Valley Partnership.

“Without such a strong member representation, we could not have pulled it off,” Valley Partnership’s President Karrin Taylor said on Saturday.

The development’s grand opening is set for Dec. 4

rsz_31untitled

Networking: Break Out Of Your Comfort Zone

 

During our 4th of July vacation, I was hiking with my 4-year-old daughter. As I looked down, I spotted a horny toad and grabbed that little guy up so fast to show her, she didn’t even have time to react.

As I was sweeping this little horned creature into my hands, I realized it had been at least 30 years and I had forgotten — do they bite? Should I be faster?

I think I remember they split blood and that would freak out a little 4-year-old. I was clearly out of practice.

Before she could even get the words out asking what the heck this little dinosaur-looking thing was, it was already in her hands. You see, this was one of my favorite outside friends growing up and I was so eager to introduce her to the memories and fun I had exploring that it was a visceral reaction of excitement. I saw the thrill in her eyes that I remember having when I held them in my hands and it was so exciting for me to relive such simple fun.

So exciting, in fact, it reminded me of the enjoyment we can get out of meeting new people and expanding our networking through associations — stay with me on this:

I have seen a marked increase in the networking through associations recently, which is a great indicator of optimism and activity in the commercial real estate industry.

>> Valley Partnership has had back-to-back sold out breakfasts — during the summer, no less;

>> CMAA was overflowing for its lunch gathering;

>> The Arizona Builders’ Alliance mixer was packed;

>> NAIOP’s Night at the Fights was the best attended in many recent years.

It is great to see people reconnect and dedicate time to promoting their firms. Some individuals are naturals at this networking thing and gain energy from the experience, others are less than enthusiastic and consider it a chore. If you are not networking, it is well worth the time to investigate associations that are right for you. If you are networking, let’s recap some best practices in the lost art:

Do Not Forget Old Friends: As you network at these association meetings, it is very important to meet new people but equally important to connect with industry counterparts, colleagues and clients. Most of us are trying to acquire new work but not focusing enough time on the people we already know but have not spent time with in a long while. Your business and services have likely changed in the past 5 years — share what has changed and educate them so they know how they might be able to help you or work with you.

It’s Easy To Get Out Of Practice: Attending association events with 75-400+ people can be an intimidating experience. Remember the basics; you are there to represent your company, meet new people, acquire information and find reasons to follow up. Before the event, determine who will be there that you would benefit from meeting or speaking to. During the event, set a goal as simple as sitting with someone you don’t know to share who you are and what your company does. After the event, follow up — as simple as this is, it seems to be an uncommon practice. Networking without follow up is really pointless.

Don’t Appear Intimidating: I am always interested in seeing people at events who look as though they would rather be anywhere else but there, and as a result, look unapproachable. If networking is not your forte, invite a coworker or friend to break the ice, but keep an open mind and push yourself to meet new people. Practice open body language and a smile. It’s easy to appear intimidating if you are uncomfortable.

Stay Within Your Natural Environment: Associations offer a great opportunity to network through educational lunches, committees, social events, mixers, training, etc. If you are not the after work type of person, it is better to find a venue that fits your personality. If you are better with a small group, committees are a great way to break down the mass of a large association and get your name associated with activities and initiatives. Additionally, if you are part of an association for education and training, you may get discouraged about your failed networking attempts. Find the right associations where your clients, prospects and trade partners will be for your networking efforts.

Introduce Old Friends To The Next Generation Of Your Firm: My favorite part of networking and business development is the industry connections I have and the clients we have worked with through the years. My coworkers have their own, separate connections and it has a compounding effect for me to meet their connections and for them to meet mine. So at every event we make a point to cross-introduce and we have tremendous business results from it.

So jump at your next opportunity to network. If you are new at it, focus on the basics. If you are well-connected try a new, energized approach to the effort to expand your network and seize opportunities to share what truly differentiates your firm.

As for the new friend we met, he was given a name, made comfortable in a cake pan with rocks and leaves, introduced to an eager group of kids, put on display in the middle of the kids table for a 4th of July BBQ and then sent back out into the world.

If you have any questions about this article or any of the topics I have covered in previous azbigmedia.com posts, please feel free to contact me at danielle@smallgiantsonline.com

 

 

energy.bill

Coalition Formed to Combat Proposed EPA Regulations

A group of Arizona business leaders and politicians announced that they have created a coalition to address proposed regulations on the Navajo Generating Station.

The Arizona Coalition for Water, Energy and Jobs said in a press conference on Tuesday that regulations proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, if implemented, will have an adverse effect on the Arizona economy by “significantly increasing water prices.”

The proposed regulations, which are a part of the EPA’s “regional haze program,” would require the generating station to install pollution control technology, intended to reduce haze and increase visibility over the Grand Canyon.

“This (the regulations) will not improve enjoyment of the Grand Canyon, but will increase the cost of business,” Sid Wilson, chairman of the coalition said.

Wilson, who came out of a four-year retirement from the Central Arizona Water Conservation District to chair the coalition, said during the conference that implementing the necessary emissions control technology, which are proposed to be complied with by Aug. 6, “could cost up to $1 billion.”

“At risk are 3,400 jobs each year,” said Karrin Taylor, board chair of Valley Partnership.

“If these jobs disappear, they would be very difficult to replace,” said Kelly Norton, president of the Arizona Mining Association, noting that an increase in water prices would have a “cascading effect on the economy.”

Taylor also said that the regulations would stagnate business development in Arizona.

“One of the most important considerations for developing businesses is power and water rates,” she said.  “If we double or triple the cost of water, we immediately remove an important attribute of business development.”

She said that Arizona has “always had a competitive advantage” due to its ability to offer low rates on water and power, and noted “the Navajo Generating Station is at the heart of that system.”

“We can’t put at risk such an important economic tool for a rule that will deliver no benefit,” she said.

House Speaker Andy Tobin said during the conference that the coalition is rallying both locally and in Washington for support on the issue.

“I am asking the President of the United States to protect Arizona from these regulations,” he said.

David Martin, president of the Arizona Chapter of the Associated General Contractors, said during the conference that the proposed regulations would produce results “similar to what happened at the Mohave Power Station,” which was forced to be shut down in 2005 after facing similar government intervention.

“We are not going to let special interests force us into the same corner,” he said.

Coalition members also said that the benefits of the regulations, which they cite as being based on “flawed technical analysis,” do not exceed the costs.

“The EPA has yet to thoughtfully approach the cost/benefit analysis required under law,” Martin said.  “If the costs of this rule exceed the benefits, and they clearly do, there would be no required retrofit.”

David Dellana

First Fidelity Bank names vice president

Lee R. Symcox, president and CEO of First Fidelity Bank, a full-service community bank, has announced the addition of David Dellana as vice president, commercial relationship manager in the bank’s Biltmore location in Phoenix. Dellana brings more than 20 years in lending experience to his new role and will serve both the Phoenix and Scottsdale areas.

As commercial relationship manager, Dellana will be responsible for building and maintaining current and future commercial client relationships and business development activities.

Prior to his new position, Dellana held a number of senior lending roles in the region. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Duquesne University and is an active member of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties, the Pinal Partnership, the Urban Land Institute and Valley Partnership, among other organizations.

David Van Slyke

Mutual of Omaha Bank Announces Phoenix Appointment

David Van Slyke has joined Mutual of Omaha Bank as vice president of commercial banking in Phoenix. Based out of the bank’s Arizona headquarters at 9200 E. Pima Center Parkway in Scottsdale, Van Slyke will work with local businesses, offering comprehensive commercial banking services, including commercial deposit accounts, treasury services and full-scale commercial and industrial financing.

Van Slyke brings over 25 years of experience to Mutual of Omaha Bank, most recently serving as vice president with the business banking group for a large, national bank in Arizona.

Van Slyke earned his bachelor’s degree in Finance from Arizona State University. He holds a Certificate of Mastery for Business Process Reengineering and is a licensed pilot.

Van Slyke is involved in the community as an advisory board member for Steps of Faith, a non-profit women’s health organization in Phoenix. He also has served as a panel member for the Phoenix chapter of the American Institute of Architects, on the Membership Committee for Valley Partnership and teaches classes in the community on sustainability, urban farming and organic food.

Mutual of Omaha Bank is a full-service bank providing financial solutions to individuals and businesses across the United States. With nearly $6 billion in assets, Mutual of Omaha Bank is a subsidiary of Mutual of Omaha, a Fortune 500 insurance and financial services company founded in 1909. For more information about Mutual of Omaha Bank, visit www.mutualofomahabank.com.

rsz_vp

Save The Family Chosen As Valley Partnership's 2013 Community Project

 

Save the Family has been chosen by Valley Partnership for its 2013 Community Project.

This project will enhance the Escobedo at Verde Vista development in Mesa. Save the Family was surprised and overjoyed with the announcement at the April 18 Valley Partnership commission meeting.

“Save the Family came prepared to present additional information on our project and organization in order for Valley Partnership to make their final decision. Can you imagine our utter surprise when in my peripheral vision I see a bouquet of balloons and a congratulatory banner stating that we had been chosen as their charity of choice?” said Jacki Taylor, Chief Development Officer.

Jacki Taylor, CEO for Save the Family, and Jennifer Hunt, grant writer for Save the Family.

Jacki Taylor, CEO for Save the Family, and Jennifer Hunt, grant writer for Save the Family.

“We are incredibly grateful for Valley Partnership’s decision. This project will have a great impact on relieving capital costs of our new build, therefore allowing us to provide more services to homeless and at-risk families with children.”

Valley Partnership’s work on the Escobedo at Verde Vista project will include a playground, landscaping, and painting. Escobedo at Verde Vista is a new mixed-use development located in the Washington-Escobedo District in Mesa.

The purpose of this project is to provide 70 affordable housing units for low-income households in Phase I, and 62 units in Phase II, including low-income foster families struggling to keep children out of the foster care system.

The development will also include on-site residential services, features for the disabled, and new administrative and program facilities for Save the Family’s clients and the surrounding community. Phase 1 construction began December 2012 and is scheduled for completion November 2013.

The two organizations were a great match from the beginning. Both Valley Partnership and Save the Family’s mission align by helping build strong communities. Together, the two organizations will build a stronger Valley by giving children in homeless, low-income, and low-income foster families a safe place to build stronger bodies and minds.

Video courtesy Save the Family

srp installs solar energy systems

Energy Consortium’s Roadmap puts state of path to build industry

Imagine Arizona as the energy hub of the Southwest — where major regional transmission lines tie into infrastructure in the state and serve a growing regional demand for energy. Arizona would be a place where an increasing percentage of jobs are related to the energy industry, whether in manufacturing, generation, transmission, energy efficiency, service or technology innovation. Many of these jobs would be higher-wage jobs requiring a skilled labor force fed by Arizona’s schools and universities. Arizona could be a hub of energy-sector jobs, with factories making equipment for the industry and power plants shipping electricity to neighboring states via new power lines, all contributing to a better economy.

That is the essence of the Arizona Energy Consortium’s Energy Roadmap, which the group hopes with be a catalyst for the state’s energy industry in the same way Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap helped the state increase bioscience jobs by 41 percent and helped increase the number of bioscience establishments by 27 percent during its 10-year plan.

“It was important to create this document to give the energy industry a unified voice and direction,” said said Michelle De Blasi, co-chair of the AEC and a shareholder at Greenberg Traurig. “The energy industry is going to be here forever. We are always going to need energy. So the Roadmap was designed to make the industry better for everyone — consumers, developers, legislators. So it was critical that we get it right.”

This is the vision the Roadmap hopes to realize over the next decade: Arizona is the energy hub of the Southwest, with a diverse energy mix supporting reliable transmission, a strong base of manufacturing facilities, increased numbers of higher wage jobs, and world-class research institutions, resulting in increased economic development for the state and region.

Once that vision is realized, De Blasi said the state can expect to reap these benefits:
• Enhanced job creation and higher-wage jobs within Arizona
• Increased state economic revenue
• Enhanced energy export potential
• Heightened energy self-sufficiency and national and state security
• Increased transmission reliability
• Continued low cost energy

“This Roadmap is going to help Arizona be looked at differently from outside its borders,” said Chris Davey, co-chair with De Blasi of the AEC and president of EnviroMission, which is developing a solar tower in Western Arizona. “The Roadmap will create a sense of certainty, which appeals to the finance community. So when they are looking to invest, that certainty creates a more attractive environment for developers and investors.”

Davey and De Blasi said they will be rolling out the Roadmap this year, presenting it to groups throughout the state. For more information on the Roadmap, visit aztechcouncil.org.

ROADMAP CONTRIBUTORS

Arizona Commerce Authority
Arizona Governor’s Office of Energy Policy
Arizona Public Service
Bridge Strategy Group
Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck
City of Mesa, the Office of the Mayor
Cleantech Open
Dircks
DIRTT
DMB Associates
Energy Services Coalition
EnviroMission
Faithful+Gould
Greater Phoenix Economic Council
Greenberg Traurig
The Green Chamber – Greater Phoenix
Golder Associates
Hensel Phelps
Ikoloji
Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals
J.D. Porter & Associates
Kolbe Connect
Matthew McDonnell
Ormond Group, LLC
RG Schmelzer, Inc.
Salt River Project
Stream Energy
Tucson Electric Power
Valley Forward
Valley Partnership

Karrin Taylor

DMB's Karrin Taylor Assumes 2013 Board Chair For Valley Partnership

Valley Partnership announced the leadership team for its 2013 Board of Directors, which will be led by new Board Chair Karrin Taylor of DMB Associates.

Other 2013 board members: Vice Chair, Doug Leventhal, Evergreen Devco; Secretary, Molly Ryan-Carson, Ryan Companies US; Treasurer, Scott Nelson, Macerich; Immediate Past Chair, Rick Hearn, Vestar; General Counsel, Jay Kramer; and At-Large Member, Dick Crowley, Kitchell.

As the Executive Vice President and Chief Entitlements Officer at DMB, Taylor is responsible for ongoing land use entitlement matters for its communities.  She serves as a member of the company’s Executive Management Team responsible for the strategic direction, growth and operation of the company.

Prior to joining DMB, Taylor was a principal with the law firm of Biskind, Hunt & Taylor, P.L.C., where she practiced in the areas of land use, development and zoning law.

She holds a B.A. in History and a B.A. in Political Science from Arizona State University.  She also received her Juris Doctorate from ASU’s College of Law.  Ms. Taylor is admitted to practice in Arizona and before the U.S. District Court for Arizona.

Taylor’s professional affiliations include the State Bar of Arizona and the Maricopa County Bar Association. She’s been appointed by the Speaker of the Arizona House of Representatives to serve as the business community’s representative on the Transportation Policy Committee of the Maricopa Association of Governments; and she also serves as the Governor’s appointee on the Arizona State Land Department’s Conservation Advisory Committee.

Her commitment to the local community includes and has included service on the Board of Directors for Valley Partnership, the Board of Directors for Greater Phoenix Economic Council, the Maricopa County Trails Foundation, the Phoenix Suns Charities Board and Great Hearts Preparatory Academies Board.  She is also an Advisory Board Member of the Arizona Aerospace Institute, dedicated to retaining and growing the aerospace industry in Arizona and a member of Charter 100 and Arizona Town Hall.

rsz_wall

Valley Partnership's 25th Annual Community Project Transforms Lives, and SARRC's Facilities

The brisk early morning air was an encouraging start to the day of hard work ahead for volunteers gathered at the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC) to participate in Valley Partnership’s 25th annual community project.

About 150 volunteers of all ages and backgrounds gravitated towards the unfinished mural on the back wall of SARRC’s Colonel Sanders location on 16th and Cypress streets in Phoenix. The mural, waiting to be filled in with vibrant paint, was the product of SARRC’s students and graphic artist Lisa MacCollum.

The goal of Valley Partnership’s 25th community project wasn’t just to finish the mural. It was to completely renovate the backyard of the Colonel Sanders location. Landscaping, an addition of a large shed, a garden and a greenhouse were all part of project day.

SARRC’s main location on 18th and Van Buren streets also had its children’s garden remodeled, planter boxes installed and a mural painted.

Volunteers consisted of Valley Partnership members and member donors such as Adolfson & Peterson, Vestar, Ryan Companies US Inc., Caretaker Landscape and Markham Contracting. Students from Saint Thomas Aquinas grade school also participated, with a total of 28 student volunteers and parents.

SARRC President Jeri Kendle had a busy day as she helped direct volunteers and participated in the renovation herself. Her excitement was apparent. This project was the culmination of about six months of collaborative volunteer work between Valley Partnership and SARRC.

“I’m excited about everything,” Kendle said. “It’s so incredible to see Valley Partnership support us in such a big way.”

With these changes, SARRC officials hope to further the goal of assisting adult clients in finding employment and expanding their Autism Artisan classes.

“It’s about building a better future for adults with autism,” Kendle explained.

Rick Hearn, Vestar’s director of leasing and this year’s Valley Partnership’s chairman, was not afraid to get his hands dirty as he hauled wheelbarrow loads of gravel.

“It’s not rocket science. It’s hard work. It’s 120 people working hard, side by side. That’s amazing and it’s all done by volunteers,” Hearn said proudly.

Hearn was hauling mulch when he stopped to look at the project’s progress. In just a few hours, the backyard was starting to come together.

“What it boils down to is paying it forward. We’ve made a contribution and we’re making someone’s life better. That’s the reward,” Hearn said.

The project’s retail cost would be about half a million dollars, Hearn said, explaining “we get it done for a lot less and with volunteer effort.”

“Valley Partnership is a great organization to be a part of for our company. We’re all members of this organization because we believe in their balanced advocacy effort,” Hearn said.

Richard Hubbard, president and CEO of Valley Partnership, worked alongside everyone as well.

“We’ve supported SARRC in smaller ways but this is where we’ve really stepped up,” Hubbard said while observing the backyard’s transformation.

Over the next 60 days, the finishing touches will be added and a monument dedicated to the late Lee Hanley, founder of Vestar and former chair of Valley Partnership, Hubbard said.

The materials and labor for the project were all donated, Hubbard said, adding that “many of these companies are here every year (on project day) and contribute material and money every year.”

Mike Markham Jr., vice president and COO at Markham Contracting, has been working with Valley Partnership for 10 years and was the project committee chairman this year. As far as the design process, Markham did not take the reins in that area, but he was excited about the actual working process.

“I’m a contractor. I like building things,” Markham said laughing.

McCollum guided volunteers on the mural project, which was about 100 feet long and only colored in partially at the start of the morning.

“It’s an interesting process. I see a lot of blank wall when I look at it but then I see the vibrant colors and the progression and I smile. The process is what I like,” McCollum said.

“The beauty is great, but turning employment into reality and seeing everyone out here working towards that cause is the real treasure,” Kendle said.

 

rsz_matt_cottle

Valley Partnership's 25th Community Project: SARRC helping young, autistic baker realize his dreams

The sounds of drilling, shoveling and excited chatter will permeate the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC) on Nov. 3 during its renovations, courtesy of Valley Partnership’s 25th community project.

SARRC’s location at Cypress and 16th streets will be receiving renovations which will directly benefit its Vocational and Life Skills Academy by renovating the Garden Works area. The Garden Works program helps grow produce for the Culinary Works program.  It also helps teach adults with autism spectrum disorders gardening skills, says Cece Russell, SARRC’s Social Enterprise Manager.

Both the Culinary Works program and Garden Works program are part of the Vocational and Life Skills Academy. Culinary Works is an 8-week program that trains adults with autism in the culinary field, Russell says.

It was through SARRC that Matt Cottle, 23, discovered his love of baking. Cottle participated in the Culinary Works program and SARRC later connected him with Heather Netzloff, who taught Cottle how to bake through one-on-one lessons.

“I liked the feeling of baking and I knew I had a talent for it,” Cottle says, adding, “Why not do it for a living?”

Each morning Cottle bakes pastries for his business, Stuttering King Bakery. Cottle is a young business owner with big dreams, much as any other business owner. Cottle’s journey into adulthood has been different, though, because Cottle is autistic

Cottle was born, raised and lived in Colorado until his junior of high school when he moved to Phoenix with his family. A job opportunity for his father brought the Cottles to Arizona.  The transition from Colorado to Phoenix was tough, Cottle says, but eventually he made friends and adjusted.

High school graduation brought more questions and concerns for the Cottle family.

“I had zero idea what I wanted to do until I started thinking things through,” Cottle says.

Cottle had been looking for ways to gain experience in the work force, but with little success.

“For two and half years people had been slamming doors in my face,” Cottle recalls.

With SARRC’s help and his family’s support, Cottle was able to pursue his dream of starting his own baking business. Stuttering King Bakery provides Beneficial Beans Café, a social enterprise by SARRC, with all of its pastries. Stuttering King Bakery also takes private orders online or via telephone.

The best-selling item on Cottle’s menu is his banana chocolate chip muffins. He says he also loves them because he used to bake them with his mom when he was younger. Cookies, biscotti, cakes, and muffins are all on Stuttering King Bakery’s menu.

Cottle currently bakes everything from home since he has a Maricopa County Home Bake license, but that may change soon with the help of Seed Spot, a nonprofit organization that supports select Arizona entrepreneurs.

Cottle recently participated in the first Seed Spot event. Seed Spot is helping Cottle build a website and kitchen within its building in Downtown Phoenix, he says.

Stuttering King Bakery was named after English King George VI. Cottle loved the inspirational message of hope from the film, “The King’s Speech.”

Cottle says he hopes to one day have his own building for his bakery. He has his eye on one, currently, and envisions it with a few tables, 10 bakers, and interns interested in the culinary arts. He wants to hire adults with autism in his bakery, too.

“Matt is definitely an example of the positive impact SARRC has on adults with autism spectrum disorders and their family,” Russell says proudly.

Cottle has big dreams and even bigger plans.

“Hopefully I’ll expand my bakery all over Arizona and nationwide one day. And maybe, just maybe, become the first autistic politician.”

 

Valley Partnership - 25Years

Valley Partnership: President's Message

25 Years of Commitment

Beginning at the end of 2011, I was charged with the responsibility of reviewing the 25-year history of Valley Partnership in anticipation of the yearlong celebration of our Silver Anniversary.

The only records kept by a small organization with a historically small staff were the binders of corporate minutes (required by law) and some photographs — not pictures on websites, CDs, JPEGs or TIFFs — of events and Community Projects. I dreaded the thought of combing through tedious legalese and staged pictures of people holding shovels pretending to do heavy lifting at some children’s facility one day a year.

I was wrong.

Reading the corporate minutes from 1987 through 2011, each year came alive with the personalities of the Chairs of the Board of Valley Partnership. They were business people who led the organization and the commercial real estate industry in some of the direst times and in some of the most successful. I read of the dedication of the Partners who served on Valley Partnership committees with missions ranging from Government Advocacy to Business Development to our Community Projects.

Although 25 years have passed and the Valley has grown beyond the boundaries that existed in 1987, one thing has been consistent: Valley Partnership is a partnership among strong individuals who are dedicated to the four corners of the Valley Partnership Mission:

  • Advocacy
  • Education
  • Networking
  • Community Service

I hope you enjoy this look back over the past 25 years, particularly the comments of the past Chairs of the Board of Directors, a collection of prestigious commercial real estate professionals who committed a significant amount of their career and time to Valley Partnership.

I invite you to join Valley Partnership for the next 25 years and become a part of the Valley of the Sun’s Premier Advocacy Group for Responsible Development.

Richard R. Hubbard
President & CEO
Valley Partnership

For more information about Valley Partnership, visit the Valley Partnership’s website at valleypartnership.org

AZRE Magazine May/June 2012