Mesa named one of top digital cities in U.S.

Mesa has made the top 10 list among cities with populations of 500,000 or more in the Center for Digital Government’s 2019 Digital Cities Survey. Now in its 19th year, the annual survey recognizes cities using technology to tackle social challenges, enhance services, strengthen security and more.

“I am very proud of our employees who have collaborated to make the City of Mesa more secure, user-friendly, efficient and resilient,” City Manager Chris Brady said. “Their dedication and innovative efforts are making technology a driver of better, smarter and more responsive government as our population continues to grow. This award is a great recognition of that.”

Mesa placed 6th among cities in its category. San Diego was rated at the top of the list. Other cities in the top 10 include Los Angeles, San Jose, Denver, Dallas, Phoenix and Charlotte.

To prepare a future IT workforce, the City is partnering with educational institutions, including shared services with Mesa Public Schools and paid internships to students from Benedictine University.

“The City of Mesa and the other top digital cities are taking the IT department far beyond the role of service provider,” Mesa Chief Information Officer Travis Cutright said. “We are exploring creative ways to leverage our technology investments and redefining the role of the public-sector technology leader at the city level.”

The top-10 ranked cities will be honored at an awards dinner during the National League of Cities’ annual conference in San Antonio Nov. 21.

Desert Financial opens new branch

East Mesa residents, meet your new neighbor! Desert Financial Credit Union has announced the opening of its newest branch location, inside Safeway at The Point at Eastmark, a 15-acre retail center at the corner of Signal Butte and Warner Road. The new credit union branch will be full service, with all banking options available, staffed by five Desert Financial employees, and led by Branch Manager Erik Durnal.

“As the Valley grows, so too does Desert Financial,” says Jeff Meshey, Desert Financial’s President & CEO. “This new branch will service existing and new members seeking a place for community-focused banking in a convenient location. We’re thrilled to be a part of the Eastmark area’s expansion and look forward to building a great relationship with the community there.”

The Eastmark branch’s design was developed with Desert Financial’s consultative model in mind. An open and inviting floor plan will enable customers to engage directly with staff and leverage Cash Recycler workstations for transactions. Two private offices for meetings are also available, and digital signage will help promote various deals to Safeway shoppers.

As part of the branch opening, Desert Financial is offering a New Member promotion, through the end of November. Every new member who opens an account at the new location will receive a $25 Safeway gift card toward a holiday turkey. In addition, Desert Financial will donate one turkey per new member signed up. Details are available at the branch. 

Hours of operation at the Eastmark branch will be Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Studio Ma’s innovative designs earn national spotlight

With a prominent national profile verging on international renown, the architecture firm Studio Ma has gained major commissions for its sustainable, bioclimatic building solutions and modern expression. Recent design honors and awards for their eco-conscious construction – as well as steadily growing coverage in the European media – affirms the Phoenix-based firm’s winning streak.

For their most recently completed work,  Xero Studio  – a renovated former dentist’s office turned net-zero headquarters – Studio Ma has received the Distinguished Building Award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Arizona chapter. In addition, the AIA Western Mountain Region has presented Studio Ma with its annual Design Excellence Honor Award for Xero Studio.

Studio Ma has also received national acclaim for its design for Arizona State University’s “greenest building yet” on its Tempe campus: the proposed Interdisciplinary Science and Technology Building, known as ISTB-7. The international arts group Chicago Athenaeum recognized  ISTB-7  last month with its American Architecture Award, the nation’s highest public award given by a noncommercial institution of public arts, culture, and education.

In addition, the sustainable development group Arizona Forward honored Studio Ma last month with its prestigious Environmental Excellence Award of Distinction, for the firm’s work on its home office, Xero Studio.

Jaburg Wilk supports Dress for Success

The law firm of Jaburg Wilk was pleased to once again be the Golden Ticket Sponsor at Dress for Success Phoenix’s recent 11th Annual Suit for the Stars Gala. 

Dress for Success has suited more than 13,000 women since their inception in 2009 with a value of more than $1.3 million dollars.  They actively collaborate with agencies to assist women to become job ready and retain their employment.

Stephanie Fierro, a partner at Jaburg Wilk and Dress for Success board member, said “Dress for Success’s mission aligns with my life purpose.  Empowering women to achieve sustainable economic independence helps all of us.  The development tools that Dress for Success utilizes are invaluable in providing not only job training but also job retention skills.” 

About Ranking Arizona

Ranking Arizona is an annual publication that ranks businesses in more than 300 categories based on public voting in the state’s biggest and most comprehensive business opinion poll. Ranking Arizona is based purely on opinion and ranks companies based on how voters answer this simple question: with whom would you recommend doing business? The magazine is published by AZ Big Media. To learn more about Ranking Arizona, contact Sheri King, director of sales.