Tag Archives: volunteer

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McDowell Sonoran Preserve to close early July

Fire danger prompts restrictions and increased patrols –

Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve will close at 3 p.m. on Thursday, July 4, to reduce the threat of wild fires during the Independence Day holiday. Summer temperatures dry out vegetation and create an extreme fire threat that can endanger lives, property and the Valley’s fragile desert. The availability and popularity of fireworks during the Fourth of July holiday increases that threat.

All trailheads into the 27,800-acre preserve will have “closed” signs posted. Scottsdale police, staff and volunteer stewards will patrol the area to advise visitors about the closure and fire threat. Violating the closure is a Class 2 Misdemeanor punishable by up to four months in jail and a $750 fine.

The use of fireworks is prohibited in Scottsdale, but sales are permitted. Fireworks should not be used in Scottsdale – or anywhere near a natural desert environment.

“While the legislature mandated that firework sales are permitted throughout the state, our local ordinance prohibits the use of any type of consumer fireworks within city limits,” said Deputy Fire Chief Jim Ford. “Fireworks should not be used in Scottsdale – or anywhere near a natural desert environment.”

Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve encompasses the McDowell Mountains and large areas of the Sonoran Desert north of Dynamite Boulevard.

Visit www.scottsdaleaz.gov/fire.

 

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The MIM Needs YOU

The Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) is currently seeking volunteer Museum Guides for 2013. MIM invites friendly, high energy volunteers to join its upcoming Museum Guide training class. Museum Guides lead visitors of all ages on guided tours and engage guests in lively, thoughtful discussions about MIM’s collection. Training covers everything a Museum Guide needs to know, including presentation skills, information about the 15,000 instruments in the collection, architectural facts, effective touring methods and much more.

Museum guides commit to 40 hours of training during a 10-week period. Sessions begin September 3 and take place every Tuesday morning from 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. until November 5. New volunteer applications are due by August 1.

Benefits for active volunteer team members include:

•  Valuable experience in a major museum.
•  Free museum access during regular museum hours.
•  Limited number of half-price museum guest passes.
•  Limited number of  half-price tickets to MIM Music Theater performances.
•  Discounts at the Museum Store and Café Allegro.
•  Tax-deductible mileage.
•  Lifetime achievement recognition for hours and years of service.

If interested, email volunteer@MIM.org or call 480.245.6957 to register.

volunteer

SRP Donates $94,500 to Nonprofit Agencies

Salt River Project employees are turning their volunteer hours into much-needed funds for the nonprofit organizations they assist through the SRP Dollars for Doers program.

The program contributes funds, ranging from $250 to $1,000, directly to community nonprofits based upon the number of volunteer hours donated during the 2012 calendar year by SRP employees. The grant program is designed to provide funding to nonprofit agencies that are also supported by the volunteer efforts of SRP employees.

“SRP has a distinct heritage built upon responding to the needs of our customers and the communities in which they live, and we recognize the value of providing support to organizations whose programs are improving the lives of our community,” said Jen Martyn who manages the SRP Volunteer Program.

SRP donated $94,500 to 106 nonprofit agencies in which 141 SRP employees donated more than 29,000 hours of their time and experience in cities throughout the Valley, including Avondale, Camp Verde, Casa Grande, Chandler, Douglas, El Mirage, Gilbert, Glendale, Higley, Litchfield Park, Mesa, Page, Peoria, Phoenix, Pine Top, Queen Creek, San Tan Valley, Scottsdale, St. Johns, Tempe and Tolleson and Tucson.

Employees contributed to their community in a number of ways, including:

· coaching youth football, baseball, soccer and swimming,
· providing children with special needs horse therapy rides,
· ushering during arts and cultural events,
· preparing meals for those in need,
· mentoring and providing leadership to youth and
· assisting schools through parent-teacher organizations and booster clubs.

volunteer

Wells Fargo employees get time off to volunteer

Shirley Burns, David Decker, and Sandy Whitver have been awarded a Volunteer Leave Award from Wells Fargo. These awards are presented annually to a select group of Wells Fargo team members and enable them to take up to four months off, while still receiving full pay and benefits, to focus on a community-based volunteer project of their choice.  These three individuals are among 24 Wells Fargo team members across the country to receive an award this year.

Shirley Burns
Operations Analyst
Wells Fargo Technology & Operations, Chandler
Burns will receive 45 days of paid leave supporting the Back-to-School Clothing Drive Stiches of Love program.  The organization’s mission is to provide new school uniforms and outfits, backpacks and school supplies for children in need.  She will create a filing system and database to help the organization keep track of donors, business partners, volunteers, and participating schools. Burns resides in Mesa.

David Decker
Operations Manager
Community Banking Business Direct, Phoenix
Decker will receive three weeks of paid leave to support Justa Center of Phoenix.  The Center is a day resource center for elderly homeless people, age 55 and older. Justa Center is the only senior-focused day center in the U.S. and its mission is to help members address the problems that led to their homeless situation, which can include catastrophic medical issues, job loss, substance abuse, and/or mental health issues. Decker will work with Justa Center directors to establish a nonprofit estate moving business that will to move clients’ belongs into new housing.  The decision to move forward with this project was approved some time ago, but they were unable to proceed because they did not have a dedicated resource.  Decker will fill that need during his leave.  Decker resides in Cave Creek.

Sandy Whitver
Operations Analyst
Wells Fargo Technology & Operations, Chandler
Whitver will receive one week of paid leave to the Back-to-School Clothing Drive New Beginnings program.  During her leave, Whitver will help prepare for and participate in New Clothes, New Beginnings, a week-long distribution held in July where approximately 6,000 pre-selected Title 1 students come and pick up a back pack containing school supplies, a school uniform, personal items , and select an outfit and accessories.  Whitver resides in Deer Valley.

“Wells Fargo team members from across Arizona are out in our communities making a difference in the lives of others on a daily basis,” said Pam Conboy, Lead Regional President for Wells Fargo Arizona. “Each year our team members volunteer their time and talent in communities across the country, helping thousands of individuals, families, and nonprofit groups. Our Volunteer Leave Program is one way that we honor this community involvement, and recognize our most exceptional team member volunteers like Shirley, David and Sandy.”

Wells Fargo’s Volunteer Leave Program was established in 1976. Wells Fargo team members who have been with the company for five years, and who meet other criteria, may apply. Winners are chosen annually based on their personal commitment to the organization, their proposed project, and the potential impact that their project goals will have on addressing a specific social issue.

Wells Fargo encourages team members to get involved in the communities where they live and work. In 2012, 57,036 team members reported a total of 1.5 million community involvement and volunteer hours, an 8.2% increase over 2011, and a contribution valued at $32.7 million1. Examples of volunteer activities included Habitat for Humanity builds; restoring parks and public land; and delivering financial education to 153,902 individuals and families using Wells Fargo’s Hands on Banking® program.

race

Komen Phoenix Race Seeks Volunteers

Susan G. Komen Central and Northern Arizona seeks volunteer Race for the Cure committee members to help plan and implement various aspects of the 21st Annual Komen Phoenix Race for the Cure, set to take place Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

Originally founded as the Komen Phoenix Affiliate, Komen CAN Arizona has been changing the lives of women, men and families in its nine-county service area since 1993. The Komen Phoenix Race for the Cure is the Affiliate’s signature fundraising and awareness event, with more than 20,000 participants and raising $1.6 million in 2012.

“We could not have the race without the tremendous support from our volunteers, and the Race Committee especially. This is a dedicated group of enthusiastic, organized individuals with a shared dedication to the Komen promise to save lives and end breast cancer forever,” said Heather Roberts, race and special events director for Komen CAN Arizona.

Key needs for the 2013 Race Committee include entertainment, Kids for the Cure®, operations and recruiting/coaching Teams. Responsibilities include attending meetings and trainings as requested (including monthly full Race Committee meetings), working with Affiliate staff to identify and fill volunteer needs for the Race, collaborating with other committee volunteers and sub-committees, Race set-up (Oct. 12) and Race Day (Oct. 13), and a post-race evaluation. A flexible schedule, with the ability to work some evenings and weekends is a must for Race Committee members.

The commitment runs from May – October 2013, with the Race Committee Kick-Off Meeting taking place at 6 p.m., Tuesday, May 14, 2013 in the Arlene Copley Wellness Center at Phoenix Baptist Hospital (2000 W. Bethany Home Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85015. Enter through the SOUTH Building – Patient Check-In – and follow signs to the meeting). This is an open meeting for all who are interested in joining the 2013 Race Committee, but please RSVP to raceforthecure@komenphoenix.org.

The 21st Annual Komen Phoenix Race for the Cure® will take place Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013. The event features something for everyone, including a Survivor Parade, a one-mile family fun run and walk, Breast Cancer Survivors’ 5K Run, 5K Run and 5K Walk in the State Capitol District. With FRY’s Food Stores returning as the Race’s VIP Partner, registration is now open to the public at www.KomenCANaz.org.

SONY DSC

Jones Lang LaSalle Completes $30M Sale of Phoenix Multi-family Property

Jones Lang LaSalle’s Capital Markets announced the firm closed the sale of La Palma in Phoenix on behalf of LAP LLC of Orange County, California.

Purchased for $30.1M by Seattle-based Weidner Investment Services, the 548-unit apartment complex further cements the local market presence of Jones Lang LaSalle’s new multi-family investment sales practice, created when Executive Vice President John Cunningham joined the firm in fall of 2011.

Cunningham and Vice President Charles Steele led the Jones Lang LaSalle team on this transaction, with assistance from San Diego-based Executive Vice Presidents Darcy Miramontes and Diane Miramontes and Vice President Kip Malo.

“Phoenix has a resiliency that investors trust to grow value,” Cunningham said. “The new owners of La Palma have an excellent opportunity to improve and reposition the asset in a very strong Phoenix marketplace.”

According to Cunningham, Phoenix rental rates were up considerably at the end of the second quarter, reaching an average $774 per month compared to an average $754 in the first quarter of the year. Vacancy has simultaneously decreased, falling from 9.8% in 1Q 2011 to 8.6% by mid-2012.

“That attracts investor dollars, and has ranked Phoenix third in the nation for total transaction volume,” said Cunningham, noting that by August, total transaction velocity in Phoenix already had surpassed its 2011 total volume of $1.49 billion.

The 548-unit La Palma, located on West Bell Road near 7th Avenue, is approximately 90% occupied. It includes 2- and 3-story buildings with 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom units ranging from approximately 720 to 1,444 SF.

The 1984-built property sits on 27.6 acres on a major metro arterial. Amenities include two large clubhouses, four swimming pools and multiple sports courts.

A 25-year industry veteran, Cunningham joined Jones Lang LaSalle last year in response to a surge in multifamily transactions and client demand not seen in greater Phoenix for years. He is charged with establishing and expanding the firm’s multifamily investment sales practice in Phoenix and throughout the region. Steele joined the practice in April.

Jones Lang LaSalle is a leader in the Phoenix commercial real estate market. Employing 344 industry experts, the firm offers office and industrial brokerage, tenant representation, facility and investment management, capital markets and development services. In 2010, the Phoenix team completed 3.2 million square feet in lease transactions, directed $60 million in project management and currently has 13.5 million square feet under management.

 

Jones Lang LaSalle Capital Markets is a full-service global provider of capital solutions for real estate investors and occupiers. The firm’s in-depth local market and global investor knowledge delivers the best-in-class solutions for clients — whether a sale, financing, repositioning, advisory or recapitalization execution. In 2011 alone, Jones Lang LaSalle Capital Markets completed $60 billion in investment sale and debt and equity transactions globally. The firm’s dealmakers completed $52 billion in global investment sales and buy-side transactions, equating to nearly $216 million of investment trades completed every working day around the globe. In the United States, Jones Lang LaSalle grew its total Capital Markets volumes by 122 percent in 2011 and is quickly gaining market share across all property types. The firm’s Capital Markets team comprises more than 1,200 specialists, operating all over the globe.

 

Job Seekers - Summer Job Search

Job Seekers: 10 Tips For Summer Job Searches

Every year as summer approaches, most job seekers and career changers make the mistake of halting all their efforts. They believe there is no point in pursuing new opportunities during the summer, and that nobody is making hiring decisions until the fall.

Ford R. Myers, career coach, speaker and author of “Get The Job You Want, Even When No One’s Hiring,” says, “Summer is no time for job seekers to be trading in their business suits for swimsuits or their briefcases for beach bags. Summer is the perfect time for career advancement.”

Myers offers the following 10 tips to help job seekers stave off the summer “brain drain” and focus on career success:

1. Create and Control Your Internet Image. Whether it’s LinkedIn, YouTube or Facebook, every professional should have an online presence. Many employers research job candidates on the Internet before making hiring decisions. Therefore, it is vitally important that you take control of your online identity and carefully monitor the “personal brand” you’re building on the Internet.

2.  Invest in Career Coaching. It might seem that career coaching would be a luxury in this difficult economic climate. Actually, this could  be the best time to get some career coaching. A qualified career coach can help you get totally clear on your objective, differentiate yourself from the competition, market yourself effectively, get the offer, and negotiate the best compensation.

3. Tune Into the Network.  Summer is one of the best times of the year to make new connections and find new opportunities. Contrary to popular belief, there are many summer networking events, planning meetings and social activities going on.

4.  Perform an Internal Career Audit.  Summer is a perfect time to take an honest look at your career – where you’ve been, where you are today, and where you’d like to go. Identify new goals based on your own definition of career success and then take action.

5.  Update Your Career “Tool Kit.” Most job seekers use only their résumé as the cornerstone of their search because their other “tools” are weak or nonexistent. But there are many other documents you should have in your “career tool kit” – accomplishment stories, positioning statement, one-page biography, target company list, contact list, professional references, letters of recommendation, and more.  These items are important not just to land the next job – but also to maximize your long-term career success.

6.  Solidify Relationships.  During the summer, most people are naturally more relaxed, convivial and generous in spirit. There is simply no better time to solidify existing relationships and forge new ones.

7.  Volunteer.  There are myriad volunteer opportunities available during the summer. This is a good way to help people, to feel good about making a difference, to have a renewed sense of purpose during your search, and to meet other professionals who may be able to help you.

8.  Call People.  Make new connections through your network and follow up with people you’ve already met. In many cases, people who are at work during the heat of the summer will not only be available for conversation, but will be grateful just to speak to someone.

9.  It is Better to Give Than to Receive.  The fastest and most effective strategy for getting help is to offer help to others. Ask the people in your network who they might like an introduction to or if there is any way that you can be of assistance to them professionally.

10. Become and Opportunity Magnet.  Always think and speak positively and never say anything negative. This will help you to become an opportunity magnet – poised to attract, interview and “hire” your next employer.

“If you are currently in career transition, these strategies should give you a fresh perspective on a summer job search. Instead of ‘taking a vacation’ from your career development activities, take full advantage of this overlooked opportunity to make real progress in your career quest,” adds Myers.

To find out more information about Ford Myers and how job seekers can improve their chances of getting a job, visit fordmyers.com.

wells fargo given summit award

Wells Fargo Receives United Way’s Summit Award

Wells Fargo & Company has received a 2012 Summit Award from United Way in recognition of its outstanding record of volunteer engagement. United Way presented the award to Wells Fargo at the organization’s Community Leadership Conference in Nashville on May 3. Wells Fargo was one of six companies, and one of two banks, receiving Summit awards. Wells Fargo received Summit awards in 2005, 2009, and 2010.

“I am proud of the generosity and compassion that our team member volunteers have demonstrated in the work that they do in their communities each year,” said Jon Campbell, head of Social Responsibility for Wells Fargo. “Last year alone they volunteered a total of 1.5 million hours to 28,000 organizations; that’s an increase of nearly 11 percent over last year. We are honored to have this recognition from United Way, and proud to be a partner with them in the important work that they’ve been doing in so many communities for so long.”

More than 3,200 Wells Fargo Arizona team members volunteered almost 100,000 hours in 2011.  “Community support is at the heart of Wells Fargo’s Vision & Values and we have had a long history of support for United Way both financially and through team member volunteerism,” said Pam Conboy, regional president for Wells Fargo Arizona. “Our team members take great pride in serving their communities and our customers know about our community support, and they tell us it’s one of the reasons they choose Wells Fargo.”

The United Way Summit Award is part of United Way’s Spirit of America and Summit Awards program, the organization’s highest national honor. For 20 years the program has recognized corporate citizens that set the example in terms of employee and community engagement. The Summit Awards honor company excellence in three areas: community impact, volunteer engagement, and philanthropic engagement.

“When it comes to investing in communities to create lasting impact, Wells Fargo is a national leader,” said Brian Gallagher, president and CEO of United Way Worldwide. “The company and its employees give more than $200 million to nonprofits and are United Way’s largest campaign in the U.S. In addition to this incredible generosity, Wells Fargo and its team members have stepped up to give their time as well, providing more than one million volunteer hours to nonprofits large and small in communities across the nation.”

United Way is a global network of volunteer-led nonprofit organizations supporting a variety of initiatives that promote education, income stability, and community health.

For more information on the 2012 Summit Award presented to Wells Fargo, visit United Way’s website at unitedwayla.org.

Successful Business Women Add Philanthropic Endeavors - AZ Business Magazine Nov/Dec 2010

Three Successful Business Women Add Philanthropic Endeavors To Their Already Busy Work-Life Balance

Giving back to the community is an important component of being a true success in the business world. As the greatest minds in history have declared, responsibility is the companion of power and privilege.

Regardless of workloads or fluctuations in the economy, true business leaders — whether they are corporate executives or entrepreneurs — have acted as stewards of their communities. In recent decades, family life has been added to the mix, making the work-life- philanthropic balance even more challenging, especially for women. But it can and is done every day.

Jordan Rose is the founder and president of Rose Law Group pc, the largest law firm in Arizona ever owned by a woman. She is also a mother of two young boys, and for the past 11 years has been an integral member of the American Heart Association’s Arizona Heart Ball Committee.

Rose’s inspiration to pursue law came from her father, also an attorney, who loved going to work every day.

“I never think of it as work,” she says. “I love what I do, it’s the perfect fit for me.”

The perfect fit means having a team that shares her enthusiasm, work ethic and high standards, so Rose can have time for family and charitable pursuits.

“I wake up every day quite grateful that I have others around to help me do all the things I find tremendously rewarding,” Rose says.

What Rose finds rewarding is giving her time and expertise to not-for-profit organizations such as the Arizona American Heart Association, a group that for more than 50 years has been dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke — and subsequently poured millions of dollars into this community to support life-saving programs.

“My husband’s family has a history of heart disease, and I have a passion for making any small attempt I can at helping support the medical professionals who are currently researching a cure,” she says.

Rose’s legal and business expertise give her the ability to further support this cause by reviewing and restructuring contracts, so the Phoenix Heart Ball can maintain its low cost-to-fundraising ratio, while at the same time limiting any risk or exposure to members and donors. It’s a charity she loves and a business model she admires.

“I think for-profit businesses could learn a lot about motivating people and managing by shadowing the Heart Ball board,” Rose says.

And she has this advice for working moms who also want to serve the community: “Pick a charity that you have a passion for and you will be grateful, as it will make you happy to wake up and be able to give something back.”

Like Rose, Denise Resnik runs her own business. Denise Resnik & Associates is a strategic marketing and public relations firm she started 25 years ago. Also, like Rose, Resnik has a deep, personal connection to a nonprofit, in this case the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC). In 1993, Resnik’s son was diagnosed with autism.

“We were told to love him, accept him and plan to institutionalize him,” Resnik recalls.

Wanting a better life for her son and other children with autism, Resnik used her knowledge and experience as a business owner to find a better outcome.

“I allowed my heart and entrepreneurial spirit be my guide,” she says.

Years later, what started as a mother’s support group is now the 18,000-square-foot Campus for Exceptional Children and a 10,000-square-foot Vocational and Life Skills Academy. Both are focused on advancing research and providing support for thousands of individuals with autism and their families throughout their lifetimes.

“SARRC is another full-time job for me and a major pro bono client for our firm,” Resnik says.

As for finding the work-life balance, Resnik says, “I layer many of my priorities and interests, like creating big ideas and plans, while hiking with friends and colleagues through the Phoenix Mountain Preserve with our son and daughter.”

Her business acumen helped her build SARRC, and in turn SARRC has taught her some valuable business lessons.

“Our board and staff at SARRC lead by example and demonstrate for us all what it takes to make our community a better place, and what businesses and individuals can do to forever impact our community and change lives,” Resnik says, adding that if you’re thinking about volunteering, even if your plate is overflowing, you’ll find a way to make it work.

“The return on your investment will likely exceed your expectations,” she says. “It certainly exceeded mine.”

Michelle Kerrick, managing partner of Deloitte, stands tall alongside Rose and Resnik in terms of the tremendous impact she’s making on the community. She too juggles motherhood, a demanding career and her passion for volunteering.

“My position at Deloitte has a strong market focus, so it can be a win-win-win for me, the firm and the not-for-profit,” she says. “I get the opportunity to meet other key leaders in our community, while also giving back.”

The organization Kerrick “gives so much back to” is Fresh Start Women’s Foundation (FSWF).

“I was inspired by the cause,” Kerrick says. “FSWF is all about women helping women and developing confidence and self-esteem.”

Kerrick knows that financial stewardship is key to success, so it’s no wonder her business, financial and risk management skills benefit a charity like Fresh Start.

“I started my board work with FSWF as the treasurer of the board, held a number of other positions and have also chaired the annual gala fundraiser,” she says. “I believe my background has been particularly helpful in these challenging economic times.”

In turn, her involvement with FSWF has had a tremendous impact on her life.

“When I meet women striving to improve their lives, it makes me more focused to lead a better life and be a better example to my daughter,” Kerrick says.

So although it’s not always easy being the perpetual plate spinner, Kerrick says it’s worthwhile.

“I want to make sure organizations like FSWF are available for the next generation of women.”


Jordan Rose - Rose Law Group pcJordan Rose
Rose Law Group pc

Charitable Organization: Phoenix Heart Ball
Favorite Quote: “Bring all your capacities to a situation and stick with it — apply all you’ve got to make fate unfold.” — Jim Balsillie, R.I.M.


Denise Resnik - Denise Resnik & AssociatesDenise Resnik
Denise Resnik & Associates

Charitable Organization: SARRC/Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center
Favorite Quote: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” — Margaret Mead

Michelle Kerrick - DeloitteMichelle Kerrick
Deloitte

Charitable Organization: Fresh Start Women’s Foundation
Favorite Quote: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” — Mahatma Ghandi

Arizona Business Magazine Nov/Dec 2010

You don't have to be santa to give charitable gifts this season

Charitable And Socially Responsible Shopping Sites

There are so many ways to share the spirit of giving to those that need it.

 Many of your favorite online stores have special sections that donate portions of purchases to specific causes. Also, don’t forget the many independent artists and product-specific initiatives like (RED) and Tom’s Shoes that make contributions to improving quality of life as well.

 The list below includes sites in which portions of purchases go toward supporting a variety of charitable causes. These can be in the form of direct donations in someone else’s name, socially responsible, economically supportive and fairly traded gifts, coupons for charitable giving and other philanthropic initiatives.

 Choose what is important to you or the person you are shopping for. These sites operate year round, so you can make a difference everyday not just during the holidays!

 Happy shopping and thank you for sharing this season!

1. GoodSearch
GoodSearch is an online shopping outlet where a portion of your purchase from many online shopping sites will go to your choice of cause or charity.

2. iGive
iGive is another online shopping outlet, where you can register and donate a portion of your purchases from brand name online stores is donated to your cause.

3. GiftBack
At GiftBack, an online gift shopping center, 10% of your purchase goes to a charity of your choice.

4. Nonprofit Shopping Mall
When you purchase your gifts through Nonprofit Shopping Mall, a virtual mall in which you can find many popular retailers, a donation is made to your favorite charity.

5. The Hunger Site
The Hunger Site is an online charitable retailer that donates to charities for hunger, literacy, child health, the rainforest, breast cancer and animal rescues.

6. Greater Good
At Greater Good you can make a donation to a cause of your choice in someone else’s name here.

7. Oxfam America Unwrapped
At Oxfam America Unwrapped you can buy a charitable gift for worldwide communities in need in someone else’s name.

8. Network For Good
At Network for Good you can purchase a gift card for a friend or loved one to be used toward charity.

9. Universal Giving
Universal Giving is a searchable database of volunteer and donation opportunities.

10. Common Kindness
Common Kindness is home to coupons for many popular products. When you use a coupon from the site the organization donates to your favorite charity.

11. Wounded Warrior Project
The Wounded Warrior Project is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping wounded U.S. service men and women. On their site you can make a donation in your name or in honor of someone else.

12. USO
The USO (United Service Organization) is dedicated to helping U.S. service men and women by providing care packages and much needed services where they are serving. You can make donations in your name or in honor of someone else.

13. Veterans Of Foreign Wars
Veterans of Foreign Wars advocates on behalf of veterans and ensures they are recognized for their service. You can donate through their website in your name or in honor of someone else.

Photo: TED / James Duncan Davidson.

TEDxPhoenix Brings Together Local Minds

TEDxPhoenix is bringing together Arizona’s thinkers and doers on Nov. 6 in the hopes of finding solutions to our local and global community’s problems.

The TEDx program aims to provide communities with an experience similar to the international TED conference.

TED began as a “Technology, Entertainment and Design” conference but has since become a forum for people to discover new ideas and possibilities and receive inspiration. The TED conference has been bringing together scientists, educators, adventurers, entrepreneurs, social activists and business leaders since 1984.  TED has drawn such big-name speakers as Bill Gates, Al Gore, Sir Richard Branson and Jane Goodall.

A staff of local volunteers, speakers and sponsors organized the nonprofit TEDxPhoenix event. Like the international TED conference, the second annual TEDxPhoenix lineup of speakers includes educators, innovators and community activists.

The list of speakers includes Lawrence M. Krauss, director and founder of Arizona State University’s Origins Initiative; Jany Deng, program manager of the Arizona Lost Boys Center; Kimber Lanning, community activist and Local First AZ founder; and Dry River Yacht Club, an acoustic symphony indie rock band; among others.

If You Go:
Tickets: $50
Date: Saturday, Nov. 6, 2010
Time: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Venue: Eight KAET Arizona PBS Studio A, 555 N. Central Ave.
Website: www.tedxphoenix.com

Most Admired Companies - AZ Business Magazine Sept/Oct 2010

2010 Most Admired Companies Winners – Workplace Culture

The Workplace Culture category recognizes companies with unique workplaces that offer employees benefits and perks, and emphasize diversity and other qualities that make the company a great place to work.

Winner: BeachFleischman PC
Category: Workplace Culture
Headquarters: Tucson
Year Est.: 1991
No. of Employees in AZ: 104
Recent Award: Accounting Today’s Best Accounting Firms to Work For – 2009
www.beachfleischman.com


video by Sonoran Studios

Although working at a CPA firm can be stressful, employees at Tucson-based BeachFleischman enjoy fun and relaxation alongside their jobs. In-house massages and ice cream socials are just a few of the ways employees recharge at the office. Work success is celebrated by featuring team stories in the company newsletter. Outside of work, the social and wellness committees take over and lead employees in a number of fun activities. Baseball games, barbecues, tennis clinics and rock climbing are some of the other ways BeachFleischman’s staff and shareholders bond while blowing off some steam.

The diversity of out-of-work activities is not the only thing BeachFleischman prides itself on. The company recruits from all over Arizona and out of state to find a diverse mix of potential employees. BeachFleischman wants the diversity of its employees to mirror the diversity of Tucson’s demographics. The company believes diversity promotes creativity and innovation, while providing an expanded knowledge base that allows it to serve a broader group of clients.

BeachFleischman also encourages its employees to pursue continual education. On average, professional staff members receive 40-60 hours of education each year. BeachFleischman encourages employees to receive professional licenses by paying for test preparation, and employees receive a bonus for passing their CPA exams. Employees who pass the CPA exam are treated to a happy hour to celebrate their success. With continuing education as a main goal, there are many opportunities to climb the corporate ladder within BeachFleischman. In 2009, BeachFleischman was named on Accounting Today’s list of Best Accounting Firms to Work For.


M&I Make Strides Walk

Finalist: M&I Bank
Category:
Workplace Culture
Headquarters: Phoenix
Year Est.: 1847
No. of Employees in AZ: 625
Recent Award: Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility – 2009
www.micorp.com

The Golden Rule is M&I Bank’s rule of thumb. By encouraging employees to follow the adage, “Treat others as you would like to be treated,” M&I allows everyone to be heard and respected. The company ensures a diversity of thoughts and perspectives through a multicultural and multigenerational work force. All thoughts and perspectives are welcomed with open ears.

M&I offers its employees flex-scheduling, tuition reimbursement, adoption assistance, plus everyone is eligible for wellness reimbursement to cover some of the expenses of health club memberships or weight control programs. Also, MiMentor is an online mentorship program that allows employees to connect across the organization. M&I not only wants its employees to be dedicated to their jobs, but also to extra-curricular activities such as volunteering and health-and-wellness pursuits. In 2009, M&I won the Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business Excellence in Workplace Flexibility.


Shutterfly

Finalist: Shutterfly
Category: Workplace Culture
Headquarters: Redwood City, Calif.
Year Est.: 1999
No. of Employees in AZ: 124
Recent Award: Ranked on Internet Retailers Hot 100 list – 2009
www.shutterfly.com | Facebook | Twitter

Shutterfly’s employee culture focuses on four major aspects: respect, innovation, achievement and customer centricity. The respect fostered in the Shutterfly offices creates a family atmosphere and an engaged work force that is encouraged through the sharing of ideas to be innovative. Innovation does not only relate to the employees and the products and services Shutterfly offers. It also describes Shutterfly workplaces, which are filled with beanbag chairs, pictures taken by employees, bright colors and white boards for constant brainstorming.

After work, employees can still see the benefits of working for Shutterfly. Employees can borrow a professional camera for their own use, take a free photo editing class and receive a gym membership discount. All of these benefits help to produce a high-performance culture in which employees hold themselves and each other to high standards of achievement. Shutterfly wants employees to have fun while working at a higher performance level in order to better serve the customer.


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Arizona's Most Admired Companies November-December 2010

Amy Stephens Volunteer Of The Year - AZ Business Magazine Jul/Aug 2010

BIG Green Awards: Volunteer Of The Year

Twelve categories, hundreds of nominations — but only one will take home the green. It’s the first annual Southwest Build-it-Green Awards, where BIG teamed up with the USGBC to bring you the leanest sustainable leaders and projects in Arizona.

Recipient: Amy Stephens, Co-Founder · Stephens ID & Associates

Amy Stephens volunteers her time, creativity and energy to the advancement of the sustainability movement across the state. She also has played an integral role in the growth of the Arizona Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council.

Stephens joined the Arizona chapter in 2006, when she also became a member of the national USGBC. She has dedicated countless hours and effort to the local chapter. She has been a member of the education committee since 2006, and has been the co-chair of that committee since 2008. In 2009, she sat on the host committee and the greening committee for the national USGBC’s Greenbuild International Conference and Expo when it was held in Phoenix.

Stephens shows the same passion she has for the USGBC in her own design company, Stephens ID & Associates. Stephens graduated from William Woods University in Fulton, Mo., in 1997 with a BFA in interior design, and has been designing balanced environments for people to live in ever since.

Her company focuses on interior design, interior repurposing, feng shui and green design. She assists her clients in going green by repurposing existing furniture with a goal toward creating healthier living spaces.
Stephens also teaches green building education classes, and is the vice president and a founding board member of the Green Meeting Industry Council Arizona chapter.

Among her future goals is to work with local elementary schools to teach students how to plant and grow food, so they will understand the importance of the Earth and where their food comes from. These plans are just several of many as Stephens forges ahead with her various sustainability endeavors.

Arizona Business Magazine Jul/Aug 2010

www.stephensid.com