Mike Brown joins Care Fund board of directors

Washington Federal Arizona regional president Mike Brown has been appointed to the board of directors for Care Fund, a nonprofit that provides mortgage and rent assistance to Arizona families who are experiencing financial hardship due to their child’s unforeseen medical illness or injury.

“While we’ve always supported the mission and organization, in 2018 our Washington Federal Foundation approved a $15,000 grant to Care Fund, which gave me the chance to see firsthand the good works they are doing across Arizona,” says Brown. “When the opportunity arose to join this group of fellow leaders as stewards and fundraisers for Care Fund, I jumped at the opportunity.

Brown was so motivated by the organization, in addition to joining the board, he has also signed Washington Federal on as the title sponsor for Care Fund’s Desert Sky Gala, which will take place in Scottsdale in September 2019, as well as its Casino Corral, which will take place in Tucson in November 2019.

Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie attorney appointed to counsel

Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie attorney Jill Ormond has been selected as a member of the Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel (FDCC). FDCC is an organization that provides knowledge and fellowship to lawyers and other professionals ensuring a balanced justice system in the defense of civil lawsuits. FDCC membership is by invitation only and involves a rigorous peer review process.

Ormond, Of Counsel in the firm’s Litigation practice group, has over 10 years of experience in tort and complex commercial litigation matters. She primarily practices in the areas of product and premises liability, product liability (automotive) and intellectual property entertainment law matters.

Notable organizations that Ormond serves include the Defense Research Institute, Arizona Association of Defense Counsel and the Arizona Women Lawyers Association. Ormond is a member and currently the State Membership Chair for the Defense Research Institute, an executive committee member for the Arizona Association of Defense Counsel and served as the State Board President for the Arizona Women Lawyers Association in 2013. Ormond received her J.D. from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law and her B.A. from Arizona State University. 

SIOR elects Rob Martensen

Rob Martensen, SIOR, executive vice president at Colliers International in Arizona was recently elected as the 2020 West Regional Director for the SOCIETY OF INDUSTRIAL AND OFFICE REALTORS® (SIOR). He will assume the position at SIOR’s Fall World Conference in Portland, Ore. in October.

Martensen has specialized in the metro Phoenix industrial market for 21 years, and his industrial expertise includes single- and multi-tenant building sales and leasing, land sales, build-to-suits, ground-up speculative developments, and landlord and tenant representation. He is recognized as a top-producing industrial broker and industry leader, and has been involved in over 600 transactions, including industrial and land sales, leasing, and build-to-suits.

An SIOR member since 2009, Martensen has served in a variety of leadership capacities, including as the 2017-2019 President of the Arizona Chapter.

“I owe much of the success in my career to SIOR and the connections I have made it through this association,” says Martensen. “I’m honored to give back to the organization in this capacity, encouraging the positive evolution of SIOR and mentoring its dynamic members.”

Arizona CFO nabs national award

Western Window Systems, part of the PGT Innovations family of brands, announced that its chief financial officer, Heather Zorge, has been recognized by Financial Executives International (FEI) as a recipient of the 2019 FEI Financial Executive of the Year Award in the Private Company category. The FEI Financial Executive of the Year Award honors financial executives who have made exceptional accomplishments as corporate stewards while making major positive impacts at their companies.

Zorge has more than 20 years of experience as a financial executive at companies in the public and private sectors, including senior financial roles at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Petroplus, and American Traffic Solutions. Since joining Western Window Systems in 2016, she has led improvements in the company’s profitability and operating cash flows. In addition, Zorge developed operational strategies that helped improve infrastructure and processes. In 2018, the Arizona Chapter of Financial Executives named her CFO of the Year.

“Heather’s strong leadership and extensive financial, operational, and strategic experience are an ideal fit for Western Window Systems as we continue to grow,” says Scott Gates, president of Western Window Systems. “It’s gratifying to see her recognized for the same qualities by industry experts.”

Veyo expands outreach team in Phoenix market

Veyo, a full-service non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) broker, recently hired Jeremy Breibart as the new business development manager for the Arizona market. With over 12 years of experience in the technology industry, Breibart will be an essential asset in propelling Veyo forward as a leader in the patient transportation market.

Breibart will be focused on Veyo’s expansion into local healthcare facilities, where Veyo’s technology is simplifying the discharge process and making it easier for members to get a ride home when their appointment is over.

With a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from the University of Alabama, Breibart will bring a diverse skill set to Veyo and its Arizona sector. His areas of expertise include sales, business development, and negotiations, with a passion for developing positive client relationships. His entrepreneurial spirit, analytical mindset, and problem-solving skills allow him to think outside the box to create innovative solutions to everyday and long-term problems.

Dr. Donata Vercelli awarded UA Koffler Prize

Donata Vercelli, MD, a professor of cellular and molecular medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson, has been awarded the UA Henry and Phyllis Koffler Prize, marking the first time a College of Medicine – Tucson faculty member has received the award.

The award, made possible by donations from the late President Emeritus Henry Koffler and his wife, Phyllis, recognizes outstanding accomplishments in three categories: teaching; research, scholarship and creative activity; and public service and outreach. The award recognizes a different category each year it is given. This year it was issued to an individual who demonstrates excellence in research, scholarship and creative activity.

Dr. Vercelli was recognized for her long-standing expertise in the prevention of childhood asthma. Her research includes a study that demonstrated for the first time that children raised on farms have lower rates of asthma. Nominators noted that Dr. Vercelli is the first female secretary general of the International Allergy Collegium, an international group of scientists that study allergies and immunobiology.

Chad Herzog named executive director of UA Presents

International arts curator and leader Chad Herzog is joining the University of Arizona as the executive director of UA Presents, effective Aug. 12.

Herzog will oversee all aspects of UA Presents, the UA’s performing arts presenter, by providing creative vision for the organization and curating programming.

Herzog is currently the co-executive director and director of programming for the International Festival of Arts and Ideas in New Haven, Connecticut, where he is responsible for the overall artistic vision, and conceiving, developing and implementing artistic and humanities events. He also oversees community engagement and marketing, and provides strategic direction, financial oversight and fundraising support.

“We are delighted to have Chad Herzog join the staff at UA Presents,” said Andrew Schulz, vice president for the arts and dean of the College of Fine Arts. “Chad has a vision and a passion for the performing arts and for artists. He has a track record of providing a welcoming environment for innovation and experimentation with artists, which has resulted in higher attendance and engagement for students and the community.”

For more than 10 years, Herzog was the director of performing arts at Juniata College in Huntington, Pennsylvania. There, he successfully developed innovative programming that grew participation by elevating the arts as a means of teaching and learning, integrating arts and culture into all aspects of campus life. Herzog created a model for artists and audiences to interact with one another not only through performance, but by commissioning new works and offering world-premiere performances. As a result, participation in Juniata Presents increased by 250 percent and student engagement rose by 700 percent.