AzBusiness Leaders 2021

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How can we define a great leader? T

he dictionary — that heavy thing we used before we could Google things — defines leader as “the person who leads or commands a group, organization, or country.” But the definition and expectations of a leader can change from moment to moment and from circumstance to circumstance. And never were leaders more tested than they were through the pandemic of 2020. The truth of the matter is that the best leaders possess an elusive mix of talents, traits and qualities that cannot be easily defined. If those traits could be defined and duplicated, we wouldn’t have the special women and men who rise to the tops of their industries. That said, an analysis of 200 CEOs from around the world by Russell Reynolds Associates and Hogan Assessment Systems reveal three major indicators of successful leaders: • They have a strong sense of purpose, passion and urgency. • They know how to shift through information and find the most important parts. • They are humble, always learning and are master collaborators. In the pages on Az Business Leaders, you will read about men and women who possess all those traits — and more. The men and women profiled in these pages have created industries, transformed industries, saved lives and made the lives of those in the communities they serve. The leaders you will see profiled in the pages of this magazine were selected from a pool of more than 5,000 of the most innovative entrepreneurs and the best and brightest Arizona business leaders in healthcare, real estate, construction, education, banking, financial services, manufacturing, technology and law. Over the course of more than two dozen meetings, that list of 5,000 leaders under consideration was paired down to about 500 names, which the selection panel considered to be the most influential leaders in their industries. Then, they were divided up into the categories you will find inside this book. The drivers of Arizona’s economy who are profiled inside the pages of this magazine have counseled presidents. They have survived plane crashes and kidnappings. They play in rock ’n’ roll bands. They were Olympians. They reflect a wide spectrum of ethnicities, age and gender. But they share one thing in common: they are catalysts for Arizona’s economy. They are leaders. They are innovators. They have influence. And when they speak, they make things happen. And together, they are guiding Arizona toward greatness. Enjoy this edition of Az Business Leaders. And if you have someone who you think should be considered for next year, nominate them at

Michael Gossie Editor in chief 14 ABL | Nominate at

President and CEO: Michael Atkinson Publisher: Amy Lindsey Vice president of operations: Audrey Webb EDITORIAL Editor in chief: Michael Gossie Associate editors: Steve Burks I Alyssa Tufts Contributing writers: Alison Bailin Batz I Erin Thorburn Steven G. Zylstra ART Art director: Mike Mertes Design director: Bruce Andersen MARKETING/EVENTS Digital marketing strategist: Paul Schaum Marketing designer: Heather Barnhill OFFICE Special projects manager: Sara Fregapane Executive assistant: Brandi Collins Database solutions manager: Amanda Bruno AZ BUSINESS MAGAZINE Senior account managers: David Harken I April Rice AZRE I ARIZONA COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE Director of sales: Ann McSherry AZ BUSINESS LEADERS Director of sales: Sheri Brown RANKING ARIZONA Director of sales: Sheri King EXPERIENCE ARIZONA & PLAY BALL Director of sales: Laura Schwartz

AZ BUSINESS LEADERS is published annually by AZ BIG Media, 3101 N. Central Ave. Suite 1070, Phoenix, Arizona 85012, (602) 277-6045. The publisher accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or artwork. Submissions will not be returned unless accompanied by a SASE. Single copy price $20.00. Bulk rates available. Copyright 2020 by AZ BIG Media. All rights reserved. No part of this publication can be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from AZ BIG Media.


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Banking........................................................ 32, 34, 36 Credit Unions............................................................38 Financial Services...................................................40 Mortgage Lenders...................................................42 SBA Lenders..............................................................44 Wealth Management........................................46, 48 Tucson Banking & Financial...................................50

Alternative Dispute Resolution.............................84 Banking......................................................................86 Bankruptcy/Reorganization.................................88 Business & Commercial Litigation.......................90 Construction.............................................................92 Elder Law...................................................................94 Employment & Labor Relations............................96 Estate Planning & Probate.....................................98 Healthcare............................................................. 100 Immigration........................................................... 101 Insurance............................................................... 102 Intellectual Property............................................ 103 Land Use................................................................. 104 Management................................................. 106, 108 Mergers & Acquisitions....................................... 110 Personal Injury............................................. 112, 114 Real Estate.................................................... 116, 118 Securities & Finance............................................ 120 Tax............................................................................ 122 Tucson Law............................................................ 123

Accounting............................................................. 144 Advertising............................................................. 146 Media....................................................................... 147 Business Brokers................................................. 148 Business Insurance..................150, 152, 154, 156 Cyber Security....................................................... 158 Human Resources................................................ 160 Public Relations.................................................... 162 Digital Marketing................................................... 164 Workforce Placement.......................................... 166

HEALTHCARE Healthcare Administrators.............................56, 57 Hospital Administrators.........................................58 Health Insurance.....................................................60 Behavioral Health....................................................62 Cancer Treatment....................................................64 Dermatology.............................................................65 Dentistry...................................................................66 Health & Beauty.......................................................70 Pain Management....................................................72 Vision.........................................................................74 Cosmetic Surgery....................................................76 Healthcare Education.............................................77 Telehealth..................................................................78 Healthcare Innovators............................................79

LIFESTYLE Auto Dealers.......................................................... 128 Jewelers................................................................. 130 Restaurateurs....................................................... 132 Sports..................................................................... 134 Tourism................................................................... 136 Tourism: Special Events....................................... 137 Tourism: Hospitality............................................. 138

REAL ESTATE Architects............................................................... 172 Broker Managers...................................................174 Broker Office.......................................................... 176 Broker Retail.......................................................... 178 Broker Industrial................................................... 180 Contractors....................... 182, 184, 186, 188, 190 Developers.................................................... 192, 194 Engineers.............................................196, 198, 200 HOA’s..............................................................202, 204 REIT’s....................................................................... 206 Office Interiors...................................................... 208 Owner/Operator.................................................... 210 Subcontractors................................... 212, 214, 216 Land Investors............................................. 218, 220 Residential Developers........................................ 222 Residential Home Builders.................................. 224 Custom Home Builders........................................ 226 Multifamily Developers....................................... 228 Realty Firms.......................................................... 230 Residential Real Estate Services....................... 231 Title & Insurance................................................... 232

TECHNOLOGY & MANUFACTURING Aerospace & Defense.......................................... 238 Energy.................................................................... 239 Communications................................................... 240 Manufacturing....................................................... 244 Innovators...............................................................245 Mining and Natural Resources........................... 246

WHO’S WHO -Hans Finzel

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CEO’s....................................................................... 248 CFO’s.........................................................................249 Economic Development....................................... 250 Education............................................................... 252 Family Owned Businesses.................................. 254 Influential Women................................................. 255





Abecassis, Michael.................................77 Abraham, Andrew. .................................116 Admire, Anthony.....................................76 Afinowich, Jim. ......................................148 Aker, Andrea..........................................162 Alcazar, Drew........................................137 Alexander, Lou Anne...............................40 Allen, Lynn............................................102 Allford, R. Allan........................................60 Almanza, Benito......................................32 Alston, Gerald Buzz.................................84 Alvarez Sr., Martin.................................182 Amada, Laura .......................................232 Anand, Kishlay........................................78 Arce-Lara, Carlos....................................64 Archer, Scott.........................................178 Arendt, Thomas. ....................................116 Atkins, Lisa...........................................218 Averitte Jr., Richard................................65 Babilon, G. Vernon. ..................................42 Badolato, John........................................66 Bailey, Lauren.......................................132 Baker, Clifford.........................................72 Balitis, John............................................96 Bambauer, Bob......................................222 Baran, Dorothy......................................116 Barnes, Hilary.........................................88 Barney, Denny......................................250 Barnier, Jerry........................................214 Barthelemy, Joel.....................................78 Basha III, Edward..................................254 Baskin, Alan..........................................120 Bates, James..........................................79 Bayless, Justin.......................................78 Beams, Christian....................................86 Beeh, Ed................................................178 Belfiore, Jim. .........................................231 Bell, R. Chapin.......................................228 Bennett, Jack........................................150 Berg, Brent. ...........................................246 Berge, Brent..........................................128 Berger, Steven.........................................88 Bergman, Lorraine................................186 Beverly, Bruce......................................232

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Beyer, Marc...........................................214 Beyers, Maureen. . ...................................84 Bhutani, Aman.. .....................................240 Bianco, Mike. . ........................................238 Bidwill, Michael.....................................134 Bill, Michael.. .........................................150 Binsbacher, Bridget..............................136 Bivens, Stephanie...................................94 Bjerk, Scott...........................................182 Blakley, Brian. . ......................................158 Boca, Paul.............................................166 Bolazina, Tony. . .......................................34 Boles, Christine................................... 244 Bontrager, Mike. . ...................................182 Bookspan, Neal.......................................88 Bosco, Mark.. ...........................................86 Boylan, Daniel.......................................226 Boysel, Heather....................................100 Brammer, Jeff.........................................46 Bregman, Mark.. ......................................98 Breinholt, Leroy....................................180 Briones, Patricia...................................109 Broberg, Toni.. .......................................240 Brodeur, Carmen...................................230 Brower, Stephen. . ..................................100 Brown, Adrian. . ......................................249 Brown, Garland.. ....................................103 Brown, Mike. . ...........................................32 Bruggeman, Jerome.. ............................214 Brunia, John. . ........................................214 Bryant, Jonvieve. . .................................254 Buesing, Jerry.. .....................................214 Bull, Ed..................................................104 Bullington Jr., Robert. . ............................ 74 Buseman, Mike. . ................................... 244 Butler, Rick. . ..........................................172 Callahan, William....................................34 Campbell, Flavia.. ..................................103 Cantelme, David. . ....................................92 Cardon, Nathan.....................................178 Carney, Bryon....................................... 174 Carson, Molly........................................194 Cartier, Casey.......................................182 Case, Darren...........................................98

Cawley, Sherman..................................172 Chacopulos, Theresa..............................46 Chase, Peggy..........................................56 Chasse, Barry.. ......................................182 Chen, George. . .......................................103 Cheng, Rita. . ..........................................252 Childers, S. David..................................102 Christ, Cara.............................................79 Clark, Bernie...........................................40 Clarke, William........................................98 Clees, Joseph. . ........................................96 Clyde, Matthew.....................................146 Clyde, Rebecca.. ....................................245 Coffin, Randy........................................130 Cohen, Robert.........................................76 Cohn, Chris..............................................62 Colling, Brian. . .......................................164 Collins, Lori...........................................250 Combs, Judi. . .........................................137 Cooke, Theodore...................................246 Coover, Kathy. . ........................................70 Coulter, William.....................................128 Crall, Tim...............................................196 Crandall, Dennis. . ....................................72 Cranston, Jennifer................................116 Creaser, Gregg......................................196 Creyer, Will............................................206 Crow, Michael........................................252 Cullum-Colwell, Lindsay.......................226 Cutter, Kevin...........................................50 Daddona, Jaime....................................120 Dahl, Lisa..............................................132 Davids, Kimberly. . .................................184 Davidson, Todd. . ....................................202 Davis, Andrea........................................176 Davis, Tom.............................................232 Davis Sonoskey, Taylor. ........................208 De Rito, Martin......................................210 Dees, Kim................................................50 Desautels, Deanne.. ..............................166 DeVito, Michele.......................................76 Dillingham, Brandon.............................192 Dinan, James........................................212 Dinan, Michael.. .....................................148


Ditmer, Dean.........................................147 Dollarhide, Jeff.....................................152 Donovan, Michelle.................................100 Douglas, Paul..........................................66 Downey, Larry.......................................176 Dreher, Mark......................................... 144 Drobny, Marc. ........................................238 Duffy, Kathleen.....................................166 Duran, Lisa............................................101 Dworkin, Judith.....................................109 Earnhardt, Bull......................................128 Eisen, Ori...............................................158 Endicott, Rich.........................................36 Evans Jr., Ronald.....................................36 Farnsworth, Tyler. .................................164 Faver, Robert...........................................34 Feeney, Matthew..................................108 Feeney, Pat...........................................180 Ferraro, Brenda.....................................245 Fine, Peter...............................................56 Finley-Hazle, Gabrielle...........................58 Fisher, Darin. ........................................ 204 Fitch, Elizabeth .....................................114 Fleetham, Jeff.......................................231 Fouts, Clint. ...........................................230 Frakes, Timothy....................................210 Franklin, Marchelle...............................160 Freed, Leah...........................................255 Friedlander, Richard...............................84 Friesen, Jeff............................................36 Frutkin, Jonathan.................................120 Funkhouser, Alicia................................112 Gallaugher, Mike....................................152 Gallego, Kate.........................................255 Garcia III, Ernie......................................128 Garner, Don.............................................32 Garner, Lauren........................................98 Garrison, Sean.......................................103 Gauthier, Scott......................................130 Geary, Rosemary....................................65 Geier, Andrew........................................184 Ghaster, Brad........................................212 Giese, Julie............................................134 Gillenwater, Todd...................................230

22 ABL | Nominate at

Goeppinger, Kathleen.............................77 Goldberg, Yale.......................................122 Goldman, Gloria.. ...................................123 Gollihar, Cindy.........................................72 Gonzales, Steven..................................252 Gonzalez, Victor. . ..................................250 Goodell Knecht, Colleen. . ........................86 Goodnow III, G. James...........................106 Goodrich, Ken. . ......................................212 Gorny, Tomas........................................245 Gottlieb, Benjamin................................118 Gould, Robert..........................................64 Grado, Gordon.........................................64 Graves, Mindy.........................................40 Gray, Alisa...............................................84 Gray, Michelle.......................................160 Gray, Richard..........................................56 Gredler, Denise. . ....................................160 Green, Brigitte......................................122 Greenawalt, Mike..................................212 Gregg, Gary........................................... 174 Grote, Thomas.. .......................................60 Grove, Dawn......................................... 244 Grove, J. Julian.. ......................................72 Guenther, Marianne..............................146 Guerra, MaryAnn.....................................70 Haenfler, Annemarie.............................196 Haggerty , Gregory...............................196 Halloran, Kevin.......................................34 Halmi, Bill................................................65 Hamblen, Jill.........................................208 Hancock, Mark......................................224 Hare, Nick. . ............................................246 Harper, Sharon......................................192 Harris, Victoria. . ................................... 144 Hart, Steve............................................138 Hartman, Bradley.. ................................103 Haydon Perry, Katie.. ............................184 Henderson, Lorrie...................................62 Herrington, Brent. . ................................222 Hester, Mark. . ........................................154 Hibbert , Ryan ......................................132 Hilgart, Ron...........................................198 Himmelstein, Ben.. ..................................90

Hoffman, Sintra.. ...................................250 Holec, LuAnn.........................................208 Hollis, Mignonne...................................250 Hummel, Michael.. .................................239 Hunt, Linda.. ............................................56 Hutchens, David.. ..................................239 Itule, Willie............................................254 Jackson, Craig......................................137 Jacofsky, David......................................56 Jahn, Gregory.. ........................................58 Jannenga, Heidi....................................255 Jarson, Debbie......................................230 Jenkins, W. Scott..................................137 Johnson, Brett......................................100 Johnson, Chris......................................146 Johnson, Debbie...................................136 Johnston, Janice....................................78 Jones, Dave.. .........................................212 Jones, Nora.............................................94 Joos, Mark. . ...........................................249 Jorden, Douglas....................................104 Julian, John.. ...........................................57 Kading, Valerie.. ......................................62 Kane, Heather.........................................60 Kaplan, Eliot.. ........................................122 Kaplan, Jennifer.. ..................................162 Karshmer, Judith....................................77 Kaufmann, Scott...................................164 Keeler, Christopher.. .............................238 Kehaly, Pam............................................60 Keller, Jeff.. ...........................................202 Kemper, John........................................202 Kendrick, Ken.. ......................................134 Kennedy, Kyle. . .......................................36 Kennedy, Sandra.. .................................239 Keyser, Jonathan. . ................................176 Kimball, Heidi.. ......................................192 Kimmerle, David.. ..................................128 King, Tim...............................................216 Kinsella, Gretchen................................184 Kinsley, Elizabeth.. ...............................249 Kitnick, David.. ......................................226 Komadina, Paul..................................... 174 Kong, David...........................................138


Kong Romero, Adriana............................50 Kotalik Jr., E.J.......................................102 Kotoske, Thomas....................................76 Kraft, Andrew..........................................79 Kramer, Jay...........................................118 Krause, Brad.........................................208 Krohn, Kelly............................................72 Krumwiede, David.................................192 Kulka, Sandra. .......................................172 Laird, Travis..........................................166 Lamber, Marc........................................114 Lang, Kent. ..............................................92 LaPorte, Todd .........................................57 Largay, John.........................................186 Laris, Lee................................................65 Larsen, Vickie.........................................46 Laulis, Julie...........................................240 Lavidge, Bill..........................................146 Lawrence, Steven.................................110 Lawton, Michael......................................58 Leadon, Kory. ..........................................48 Lieberman, Amy......................................84 Lieberman, Richard..............................120 Lihn, Caleb..............................................94 Linam, Shawn........................................238 Lind, K. Michelle. ...................................231 Lindsey, Amy........................................147 Linhart, Gary.........................................192 Little, Linda...........................................147 Lloyd, Bryce............................................34 Lund, Lisa...............................................42 Lundberg, Rebecca...............................224 Lyon, Scott. ...........................................138 Macias, Steve....................................... 244 MacQueen, Patrick................................106 Maggiore, Tomaso.................................132 Magne, Theresa.......................................65 Mann, Alana...........................................228 Manning, Michael....................................90 Manuel Jr., Kenneth..............................138 Maroulakos Goodwin, Nicole.. ...............106 Marrell, Jerry........................................180 Marshall, Edmund.................................130 Martin-Denning, Terry. . ......................... 174

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Mason, Bill. . ...........................................216 Matheson, Michelle. . ...............................96 Maxwell, Scott.. .....................................176 May, Carol.............................................255 McGrath, Michael....................................88 McKendry, Steve...................................218 McLaughlin, Chester...............................94 McNeil Staudenmaier, Heidi..................109 McNichols, Robert. . ...............................194 McRae, Beth..........................................162 Meister, Christopher.............................106 Meshey, Jeff...........................................38 Meyer, Robert. . ........................................58 Micus, Dillan. . ..........................................46 Miller, Eric.............................................245 Miller, Jack............................................138 Miller, Tracy. . ...........................................96 Minice, Nichole. . ....................................158 Miranda, Pedro. . ....................................106 Molina, Alfredo......................................130 Molinaro, Frank.......................................57 Moore, Scott. . ........................................224 Moore, Steve.........................................136 Moretsky, Sanford.................................. 74 Morris, Jason........................................104 Morrison, Scott.....................................222 Moshir, Sean. . ........................................158 Mueller, Brian........................................252 Mulhern, Bob......................................... 174 Murphy, Don..........................................224 Murphy, James.. ....................................188 Murphy, Richard. . ....................................92 Nadeau, Mark........................................108 Nagy, Tibor............................................123 Nash, Linda...........................................132 Nathan, Nate.........................................220 Neuwirth, Shayne................................ 144 Noel, Todd. . ............................................176 Norwood, Aaron.. ...................................180 Nowaczyk, Steve. . .................................198 O'Malley, Kevin.. ....................................102 O'Shea, Taryl . . .......................................137 Obergh, Karl..........................................198 Olea, Angela............................................79

Oller, Shawn.. .........................................108 Olsen, Stephanie...................................164 Olson, William.. ......................................222 Onsager, Richard. . .................................122 Ordóùez, Karina....................................101 Ortiz, Laura...........................................194 Pack, Jason.. ...........................................40 Palmer, Sheryl.. .....................................248 Parsons, Bob. . .......................................134 Patterson, Bart.....................................232 Patterson, James.................................104 Pavone, Jeff..........................................148 Pearson, Don.. .........................................32 Pearson, Todd.........................................38 Pederson, James..................................210 Perkins, Scott......................................... 74 Peters, Scott.........................................206 Peterson, Clark.....................................240 Phanse, Sonia.........................................98 Phelps, Craig...........................................77 Pidgeon, Steven....................................110 Pilsky, Clarence......................................66 Piotrowski, Jim.....................................239 Pistillo, Jason.......................................158 Planchard, Cathy..................................162 Pollack, Elliott. . .....................................231 Pollack, Michael....................................210 Porter, Scott. . ..........................................46 Porter, Nicolas........................................66 Pratte, Danna .........................................70 Price, Charles. . ........................................90 Price, Ginger.. ..........................................66 Puente, Dan. . .........................................216 Purves, Steve..........................................57 Rabinowitz, Andrew................................ 74 Ralston, Dave. . ........................................32 Rasmussen, Wade. . .................................44 Reedy, Kim..............................................38 Refo, Patricia..........................................90 Reichling, Steven..................................249 Renaud, Eric............................................50 Resnick, Mitchell....................................92 Reynolds, Chuck...................................198 Rhodes, Paul.........................................210

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Rich, Judy...............................................58 Ricketts, Cynthia..................................108 Riester, Mirja.........................................146 Ripp, Michael...........................................86 Rispoli, Frederick. .................................100 Robbins, Robert....................................252 Roberts, Jon. .........................................216 Roberts, Scott. ........................................42 Roberts Shank, Roberta "Sissie"..........254 Roch, Karen. ............................................38 Rodriguez-Pashkowski, Barbara..........118 Roga, Alan...............................................78 Rogers, Bill..............................................42 Romero, Regina. ....................................255 Romero Jr., Rosie..................................231 Rufrano, Glenn......................................206 Sabow, Kim............................................136 Sacco, Rachel. .......................................136 Salerno, Thomas.....................................88 Samberg, Amy.......................................102 Sanghi, Steve........................................248 Schantz, Tim.........................................134 Schmidt, Angie......................................190 Schmidt, Ted. .........................................123 Schmitt, Tom.........................................130 Schmittlein, Marc..................................154 Schroeder, Micki...................................160 Schulman, Brian....................................120 Schwartz, Jay......................................... 74 Schwartz, Michelle................................232 Schwister, Rob........................................36 Sellers, David........................................184 Sender, Darin. ........................................104 Serrano, Ric...........................................254 Sestak, John...........................................90 Sferruzza, Hilla.....................................249 Shabaker, Elizabeth................................48 Shade, Joshua.........................................42 Shaffer, Alex............................................44 Shaw, Amanda.......................................202 Sheets, Steven........................................62 Shell, Randy..........................................180 Sheridan Reguerin, Sandra...................101 Shoen, Edward......................................248

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Shorall Jr., Thomas.. ................................92 Shwer, Bradley......................................114 Silver, Leon...........................................108 Simmons, Destin.....................................44 Sinclair, Jack.........................................248 Singh, Devinder. . .....................................64 Sjoberg, Frances. . .................................109 Skinner, David.......................................200 Slack, K. Thomas. . .................................114 Smith, Chaz...........................................218 Smith, Martha.........................................60 Smith, Rick............................................245 Sornsin, Robert.....................................216 Southard, Brenda. . ................................226 Southwick, Bill........................................62 Spillum, Andrew................................... 144 Spiro, Ari. . ..............................................178 Spyrow, Florence....................................57 Steffen, Todd.........................................188 Stevens, Mike. . ......................................190 Stiller, Beth.............................................70 Strickbine, Steve. . .................................147 Stump, Adam...........................................44 Sugich, Carlos.......................................118 Sultan, Tarik..........................................123 Susa, James..........................................122 Sutherland, Scott. . ................................147 Swanson, Jim........................................194 Swick, Robert..........................................50 Symancyk, J.K......................................248 Tarver, Mike. . .........................................228 Taylor, Emily. . ..........................................94 Taylor, Shannon.. ...................................160 Thomas, AJ............................................172 Thuringer, Cathy...................................194 Tiscornia, Mark.....................................172 Todero, Catherine.. ..................................77 Toole, Bill. . .............................................148 TouchĂŠ, Charles. . ...................................156 Treadwell-Rubin, Pamela......................123 Trent, Jeffrey..........................................79 Trussell, Steve.. .....................................246 Tutera, CarolAnn ....................................70 Udenze, Ken......................................... 144

Urban, Ruth.............................................48 Usher, Richard. . .....................................156 van der Feltz, Lennard............................48 Van Dyke, Susan.. ....................................76 Vandehei, Karen. . ..................................166 Venneri, Alexi........................................164 Verma, Kuldip........................................218 Vitale, Gabrielle.. .....................................40 Vogel, Greg............................................218 Volk, Christopher..................................206 Vroman, Ross........................................190 Vynalek, C. Bradley. . ...............................86 Wagner, Beatrix. . ...................................206 Ward, Bruce. . .........................................228 Watts, Patricia......................................228 Weed, Ryan...........................................200 Weidner, Siegfried. . ...............................246 Weiser, Paul.. .........................................116 Weiss, Josh...........................................162 Weiss, Scott..........................................110 Westad, Ronald.......................................38 Whiteman, Jeff.. ................................... 244 Widdows, Matt......................................230 Widmar, Mark........................................239 Wiesinger, Benjamin.............................101 Wiggins, Steve......................................226 Wilde, Trevor...........................................48 Wilenchik, Dennis.................................118 Williams, Elijah.. ....................................200 Williams Jr., Lonnie.. ...............................96 Wilson, Rob.. ..........................................238 Wimmer, Chuck.. ....................................148 Winterscheidt, Rebecca.......................101 Wissink, Susan. . ....................................110 Wolfe, John.. ..........................................240 Wood, Todd............................................222 Woodman, Brad.....................................208 Yoder, Lamont.........................................64 Young, Mark.. ...........................................44 Young, Michael......................................200 Yu, Cathleen..........................................110 Zapata-Rossa, Marian. ..........................109 Zell, Alan.. ..............................................178 Ziff, Laura.. ............................................202

banking & finance // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK



Here are the financial industry trends to watch in the wake on COVID-19


Mike Brown, president of WaFd Bank Arizona, and WaFd’s Arizona executive team. (Photography by Jacquelynn)



ooking toward 2021, Az Business Leaders sat down with Mike Brown, president of WaFd Bank Arizona, as well as his Arizona executive team to discuss what banking trends await amidst uncharted territory that will come in the wake of the pandemic. Despite a hurricane of unexpected changes and challenges that have sprung from COVID-19, Brown and his colleagues see hope on the horizon. And, this highly collaborative team shares how their all28 ABL | Nominate at

hands-on-deck approach during uncertain times championed notable victories within WaFd, and beyond.

Az Business Leaders: What do you see in terms of a global outlook in banking as we approach 2021? WaFd: Looking into 2021, it is a challenge for banks for two reasons: 1. Economic uncertainty related to COVID-19 and all of the unknowns (will there be a vaccine, will we have more

shutdowns, can there be large gatherings, will the unprecedented level of government assistance continue); and 2. The near zero interest rate environment makes it very hard for banks to generate normal returns. Acknowledging the challenges, overall we are bullish on banking looking at 2021 and forward because: 1. Banks learned valuable lessons in the great recession that are benefiting all of us today (banks are very well capitalized and it

is much better to work with your clients by providing flexibility than moving quickly to foreclosure) 2. This crisis is not centered in real estate, in fact real estate has actually strengthened which will be a source of strength for both banks and consumers 3. We have empowered our workforces to work when, where and how they want which will drive increased productivity and connection with our clients.

ABL: How will the residential and CRE markets continue to navigate challenges prompted by the pandemic? WaFd: Given the current supply imbalance,

historically low interest rates and the economic/growth dynamics Arizona has to offer, the residential market has remained strong during the pandemic and should continue into the future. There remains a significant amount of demand and appears some buyers may be returning to market seeking a change to their current quality of life. Evidence of this was a June that saw sales of newly built homes rise faster than any month since 2005. Multifamily has remained strong in both occupancies and collections, though as the government assistance may subside, there could be some effect. The single family rental market is one asset class that has been seen as COVID friendly and thus a number of institutional investors/developers

are entering the space. Going forward, we will continue to focus on the migration trends that will effect the momentum of all the aforementioned residential components. As it relates to Arizona commercial real estate, the market was extremely strong across all asset classes prior to COVID. At this point, it would be premature to draw any type of conclusions about the virus’s impact on the local commercial real estate market. So far, the most severely impacted have been hospitality and retail and will likely spill over into the office and potentially even the industrial markets (i.e. Nike announcing they are not coming to Goodyear). Though, Arizona is better positioned than many other states across the country and thus will hopefully see the turnaround much faster than others.

ABL: How does industry move forward as we reach closure with COVID? WaFd: This is a very difficult question to

answer because the pandemic keeps changing and the idea of “closure” is still something we would all like to know, personally and professionally. When the pandemic had intensity, starting in March 2020, it clearly impacted many industries. In many ways, it touched us all. Those who saw the immediate impact were hospitality and tourism, oil and gas, and retail, of course. Certainly all small businesses were touched as well, to put it mildly.

The government lifelines like the CARES Act and the PPP loans were able to “stem” the bleeding but the virus is still raging throughout the country and it is difficult to understand the trends going forward. I also sit answering these questions in August 2020; meaning before the election. I think predicting anything without more data on the global pandemic and the election outcome would be premature.

ABL: How has the pandemic affected the banking industry? WaFd: The banking industry continues to

move forward albeit in a new and different manner. Our retail branches have had to deal with restricted lobbies, sneeze guards in front of the teller lines, dots to tell them where to stand, masks for the employees and customers, etc. The commercial side of the bank continues to grow but we are not only focused on the overall creditworthiness of the borrower and the underlying collateral but we now discuss possible COVID-19 impacts on that specific project or that specific industry. Consequently, our stress testing has expanded and we continue to monitor and adapt as the pandemic continues.

ABL: How will the aftermath of COVID-19 alter the banking industry? WaFd: I think it depends on the bank itself. In relation to WaFd Bank, we are the 10th

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banking & finance // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

best capitalized bank of the 100 largest in the country and recently named among the top 25 banks in the country by Forbes Magazine. WaFd Bank has been around for 103 years, and longevity like that doesn’t just happen by accident. We are big enough to matter, yet small enough to care. We are nimble. We are strong. We are poised for growth. And we are poised to help Arizona businesses recover, recalibrate and grow in this new decade. The aftermath of COVID-19 will have some philosophical discussions that will be discussed in great detail and they include things like working from home, what should our branches look like in the future?, will branch visits be made on an appointment basis, etc.

ABL: What victories has WaFd Bank Arizona experienced in 2020? WaFd: One of the most memorable

experiences for our bank in 2020 was our involvement in the PPP loan program whereby WaFd was able to provide 6,700 loans totaling $490 million throughout our eight-state footprint and 912 in Arizona totaling $88 million. These loans were focused on the lifeblood of those companies…their employees. Our WaFd team here in Arizona and throughout our eight-state footprint worked on these loans for countless hours and even on weekends because they felt so elated when they were able to tell these clients that they were approved and the monies would be in their accounts shortly. We have thousands of very happy customers and many times there were tears associated with those discussions. One of our Senior Relationship Managers said “This is ‘emotional money’ like I have never seen before!!” It was a very happy experience for our bank and our customers in a very difficult time in the history of our state and our country. We also spent significant time in 2020 determining how to best maximize our current branches for our team members and customers. This led us to a series of renovations and refreshes brand-wide. In June 2020, we finalized a full remodel nearly from the ground up at our Safford branch. In August 2020, we formally moved our bustling Camelback branch to a new 30 ABL | Nominate at

location next door, which provides far better access, parking and other amenities. And by December 2020, we will also complete two more sweeping renovations: one to our Paradise Valley branch that will modernize the space as well as give us a partner in Black Rock Coffee in the building; and one to our Yuma 4th Avenue branch as well. 2020 also marked a time when our team members stepped up efforts in the community in a big way. As a small sampling: I served as vice chair of The Care Fund throughout 2020, and in November 2020 became its chair. Lisa Davey, who serves as vice president and northeast Arizona retail division manager for WaFd Bank Arizona, was appointed to the board of directors at Chrysalis, which offers a comprehensive array of trauma-informed programs for individuals and families impacted by domestic abuse. Jim Orrey, who serves as WaFd Bank Arizona’s assistant vice president as well as the Prescott Valley branch manager, was elected a board member for the United Way of Yavapai County, which identifies unmet needs across the community and addresses them by funding programs and networking with its agencies. Dan Nillen, WaFd Bank Arizona’s managing director of commercial real estate, continued his dedicated service to The Scottsdale Charros. Jill Malick, WaFd Bank Arizona’s vice president and senior relationship manager at WaFd Bank Arizona, serves on the Tucson Metro Chamber’s executive board, where she is past-secretary and the current treasurer. She is also a member of United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona’s board of directors.

ABL: How did the bank assist the community amid COVID-19? WaFd: Banks – and bank leaders – are in

a unique position in times of crisis. Many times a crisis can or will have a financial impact. Bankers are financial professionals and they can provide help to a customer whether it is retail or commercial insight or navigation help relative to the crisis. WaFd Bank, by virtue of our strong capitalization and market strength, was uniquely positioned to help our clients and our

communities in this time of uncertainty. We were privileged to have the capital to provide liquidity to the markets we serve and provide stability in uncertain times. First, we implemented a Small Business Lifeline program through our Community Banking Group. This Lifeline program, in which we allocated up to $100 million, was designed to help affected clients and non-clients by providing liquidity through business lines of credit up to $200,000 with 90 days of 0 percent interest. In addition to the Small Business Lifeline program, we implemented other payment relief assistance programs to help our clients that were not eligible for the small business program. This includes those that have consumer mortgages with WaFd, as well as our commercial banking clients. We also recognized that many small businesses were in immediate need of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, so we established the WaFd Bank PPP Contact Reservation List that allowed us to notify customers as soon as the PPP loans are made available. Our technology was a win as it relates to COVID-19 as well. In March 2020, we went live with our nCino platform for commercial loan origination, so we were able to work quickly with their very nimble platform to process our PPP loans. But they at the time did not have, at least available for us, API integration with E-Tran. So we utilized bots—basically computer programs to emulate human beings entering data. I think it took on average about three minutes per loan when you could get through. When we had the downtime between the first and second rounds of PPP, we implemented two different APIs from two different vendors, and the bots—and also human interaction for the most difficult, challenging loans. With the interfaces, it takes just a few seconds. Beyond this, locally we donated over $80,000 in grants immediately and in addition to our regular WaFd Foundation grants. WaFd Bank also created a COVID-19 Mortgage Payment Deferral Program, a homeowner assistance program allowing monthly mortgage payments to be deferred for three months.

Mike Brown

We’re in this together.

Arizona Regional President


For over 100 years, we’ve worked together to serve our clients and communities. As we work through this unprecedented time in our lives and finances, we blend our experience to make the most difference for our clients and businesses throughout Arizona. We are honored to have several members of our team included among this year’s AZ Business Leaders. We congratulate our fellow honorees at esteemed companies across Arizona. We’re in this together, and we’re here to help.

31 branches in Arizona. Visit to locate an office near you.


Voted Best Bank in Arizona by for 3 years in a row.

banking & finance // BANKING

A BENITO ALMANZA Arizona market president // Bank of America // Almanza is responsible for coordinating all lines of business efforts in Arizona and the Bank’s community and civic activities. He oversees business banking activities in the Desert Mountain States, which include Arizona, New Mexico, and El Paso, Texas. Almanza has been with Bank of America for 39 years, working in California before moving to Arizona in 1992. Professional advice: “Be flexible and stay current. The industry is constantly changing, so learn to read your community’s tea leaves to take advantage of market opportunities.” Surprising fact: “I enjoy hiking and The Grateful Dead. A few years ago, my wife and I went to seven national parks. We’ll do 20-mile hikes in a day. During these long hikes, my iPod is playing Grateful Dead music, a group I’ve seen in concert 87 times.”




Arizona regional president // WaFd Bank Arizona // Brown is Arizona regional president of WaFd Bank, which has 31 branches statewide, $1.4 billion in local deposits and is a multi-year winner of’s Best Bank in Arizona. Over the past five years, Brown has pushed a massive statewide business banking initiative forward, most recently opening a Southern Arizona Commercial Banking Center in 2020. Role model: “My father – who we lost in 2020 – was a big influence. I learned so much from him. Among his lessons: ‘the harder you work, the luckier you get,’ and ‘listen, listen and listen some more before opening your own mouth,’ and something important at work and at home.” Surprising fact: “I was an active skier as a kid and a ski instructor as an adult.”



C DON GARNER CEO // Alliance Bank of Arizona // Garner is CEO of Phoenix-based Alliance Bank of Arizona, a division of Western Alliance Bank, member FDIC, a position he has held since 2017. A founding member of Alliance Bank’s original management team, established in 2003, he steers the overall strategic direction and administration of programs and products offered by Alliance Bank, while also managing its performance and operations. Role model: “My father championed humbleness, specifically recognizing everything we have today are gifts that could be gone tomorrow. This has guided me both personally and professionally.” Attraction to industry: “Banking is an incredibly dynamic industry. Even 30 years on, it’s exciting to navigate a complex process and find ways to contribute to customers’ success.”


D DON PEARSON Lead region president // Wells Fargo // Pearson is the lead region president for the Desert Mountain region which encompasses community banking operations in the states of Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and San Diego and North County Inland regions in California. In his role, he leads a team of more than 7,000 team members, including 539 branch locations. Attraction to industry: “I joined banking after working in a warehouse. So, the banking environment was a terrific upgrade. I love people and am curious, leading me to make new friends and enjoy helping others. I became very passionate about my career and really enjoy community, working with our team and customers.” Surprising fact: “I am very active with my hobbies – I enjoy off-roading, watersports, and our bikes.”

E DAVE RALSTON CEO, Arizona Market // BOK Financial //


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With almost 40 years of professional experience in the banking industry, Ralston currently is the CEO of BOK Financial for the Arizona market. He was appointed to this position in April 2005 and has overall responsibility for market leadership in Arizona. Attraction to industry: “I have an accounting degree but had no desire to pursue public accounting as a profession. What attracted me to banking was an opportunity to utilize my degree and have the ability to work with so many different businesses and industries. To this day, the most enjoyable part of my job is learning about new companies and getting to know the owners and/or executives of those companies.” Surprising fact: “In one round of golf I had two holes-in-one, and one was on a Par 4.”

Your banker should say what they’ll do and do what they say. Not one time, but every time. It’s not about making promises, it’s about keeping them. That’s the kind of accountability you’ll get from Alliance Bank of Arizona.

Top 10 – Forbes Best Banks

Alliance Bank of Arizona, a division of Western Alliance Bank, Member FDIC. Western Alliance ranks top ten on Forbes’ Best Banks in America list, five years in a row, 2016-2020.

banking & finance // BANKING

A TONY BOLAZINA Region president // Northern Trust // Bolazina is the region president managing operations in Arizona and overseeing the Colorado and Nevada markets. He received a bachelor’s degree in economics from DePauw University and a masters of management degree in Finance from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. He joined Northern Trust in 1984 and he had management responsibilities in the Chicago and Denver markets before relocating to Phoenix in 2011. In 2010 Bolazina earned his Certified Private Wealth Advisor designation. He is a member of Greater Phoenix Leadership, advisory board member of the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, and a past board member of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale.



B WILLIAM CALLAHAN President and CEO // Arizona Bank & Trust // Callahan currently serves as president and CEO of Arizona Bank & Trust, an affiliate of Heartland Financial, USA. In this role, he manages total assets in excess of $640 million across seven branches and oversees all operational activities of the bank, including commercial, retail, private client services, private banking and wealth advisory services. In addition, he is also responsible for strategic direction and board of director activities of the bank. Personal qualities: “Belief in a positive, hard-working environment that helps to foster vision and creativity. Being able to lead successfully by implementing strategies that help others reach their goals and personal objectives. Belief that in order to avoid stagnation, we need to be innovative and take appropriate risks.”



C ROBERT FAVER President and CEO-Arizona region // UMB Bank Arizona // Faver was added CEO to his title as president of UMB in September 2020. As president, Faver was responsible for managing the Commercial Banking department and serving as the chief credit officer for the region. Role model: “I’ve had numerous mentors/role models over the years. My grandfathers had the biggest impact, instilling in me the importance of doing what’s right, working hard. and giving back to the community. Jim Patterson has also been a significant mentor, providing guidance on improving my leadership and communication skills.” Attraction to industry: “The best part of this job is being able to meet with business owners, hear their story and figure out a way UMB can help. The surprising aspect is that the best part of my job never gets old — I enjoy it more every year.”

D KEVIN HALLORAN Arizona state president // CIT (formerly Mutual of Omaha Bank) // Halloran leads the strategic growth and management of CIT’s statewide operations, including 10 full-service locations throughout metropolitan Phoenix and Tucson. Halloran has nearly 30 years of banking experience. He earned his bachelor’s degree in finance from Indiana University and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma Banking School. Key to success: “Over the course of my 30-year career in banking, I’ve sat in only four different chairs, yet I’ve worked for 10 different banks. With all of the mergers and acquisitions in financial services, adaptability to change has been a requirement — and I only see that trend continuing.” Surprising fact: “I spent two summers at U.S. Steel, working with molton steel at a continuous caster in Gary, Indiana.”

E BRYCE LLOYD Phoenix Market President // FirstBank // Lloyd, FirstBank Phoenix market president, has been employed with the bank since 1989. Lloyd serves on various boards in Metro Phoenix, including the Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce, Valley Partnership, and Arizona Bankers Association. Role model: “My parents were great role models of integrity and hard work. I’ve also benefited from many great mentors at FirstBank. It is in our company culture.” Attraction to industry: “My initial attraction to banking was simply getting my first real job. As the years went on I came to really enjoy meeting so many different and interesting people from all walks of life. The best part of banking is getting to work and learn from all these connections.” Surprising fact: “If I wasn’t in banking, I would have loved to have been a lounge singer.” 34 ABL | Nominate at


Number Relationship

At UMB, more truly means more. In today’s world, you’re managing a complex set of financial needs from risk and credit, to growth and security. When you add all of that up it means the most important thing you need is a financial partner you can trust. And, we believe our track record of successfully serving our clients for more than a century through all economic cycles speaks for itself.

Member FDIC

banking & finance // BANKING

A RICH ENDICOTT Market president // Parkway Bank // Endicott’s career dates back nearly 40 years. Before leading Parkway Bank, Endicott was senior vice president and market manager for M&I in the Scottsdale and Tucson markets. Professional advice: “Banking is changing. What was traditional just a few years ago has been rewritten. Those that enter the banking business today and have a deeper understanding of social media, digital applications and Fintech will have the advantage.” Prized possession: “Our family paints together. For years, my wife and I together with our four children attend painting events or hold them in our home. It has become a family competition. We have accumulated over a 100 canvas paintings. I will admit there is not a Rembrandt among us, but I prefer this art to any in a museum.”

B RONALD EVANS JR. Executive vice president and chief credit officer // West Valley National Bank //


Evans, Jr. joined West Valley National Bank in April of 2019 and serves as executive vice president and chief credit officer. As chief credit officer, Evans is responsible for oversight of all credit administration functions and the management of the bank’s loan portfolio. Evans brings 19 years of experience in the banking industry. In 2003, he graduated from Wilmington University in Wilmington, Del., with a BS in finance and later obtained, from Wilmington University, an MBA in 2008. His career began in 2000 as a unit specialist with First USA, which later merged with Bank One then Chase. After briefly leaving banking in 2009, Evans returned to to the industry in 2014 as the chief credit officer of Hebron Savings Bank located in Hebron, Md.

C JEFF FRIESEN President, Arizona region // Enterprise Bank & Trust // Friesen is responsible for overseeing the fulfillment of current clients’ business and personal banking needs. He leads the Commercial & Industrial and Commercial Real Estate lending groups, as well as, all Tax Credit Finance, including New Market Tax Credit and Historical Tax Credits. Prior to relocating to Arizona in 2017, Friesen served as the senior vice president and director of commercial real estate for the Kansas City Region Enterprise Bank & Trust. Professional advice: “Don’t take shortcuts. Make sure you get into a management training and/or credit training program. This will help to accelerate your career by providing a great foundation.”


D KYLE KENNEDY President, Phoenix/Arizona banking director // Bell Bank // Kennedy brings nearly three decades of experience in the Arizona banking community to his position at Bell, where he’s working to grow the bank’s presence in the Southwest. During his career, Kennedy has specialized in the areas of commercial and industrial lending, treasury management, small business banking and private banking. Outside of work: “I’m a lifelong Arizonan and a graduate of the University of Arizona, as well as the Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington. Outside of work, I stay involved in the community and have served on the boards of the Tempe YMCA, Chrysalis, Peoria Diamond Club and Trout Camp (New Pathways for Youth) and chaired the CoBiz Financial BizBash.”

E ROB SCHWISTER President, Phoenix metro market // Alerus // Schwister joined Alerus in 2010 with over 15 years of business and banking experience. His career includes past positions as vice president and senior vice president of commercial lending at financial institutions. Schwister received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from ASU, masters’ degree in business administration from the Rochester Institute of Technology, and a professional master of banking degree from Louisiana State University. Attraction to industry: “I spent nearly a decade in the manufacturing industry before transitioning to banking. I chose a career in banking because I wanted to have a positive impact on my community. My biggest surprise has been the enjoyment I have experienced and the life-long friends I have made while helping business owners make good financial decisions.”

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Dr. Rich Higgs, DDS

Aquila Dental , Chandler, Arizona Customer since 2013

Helping Local Businesses Control Their Own Destiny Since 2006

One of a few locally owned and operated community banks. Founded by local business leaders, the Bank fills a much needed niche. We want to help local businesses control their own destiny by providing exceptional financial services delivered by local residents. Call us at 623.535.2462 or visit us at to see how we can help your business! • Capital Improvement Loans • Commercial Real Estate Loans • SBA 504 Commercial Real Estate Loans • Operating Loans/Lines of Credit • SBA 7(A) Loans

Branch Locations

2440 N. Litchfield Rd., Suite 100 Goodyear, Arizona 85395 Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday

2111 E. Highland Ave., Suite B-150 Phoenix Arizona, 85016 Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday

402 W. Pima St. Gila Bend, Arizona 85337 Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday

banking & finance // CREDIT UNIONS

A JEFF MESHEY President and CEO // Desert Financial Credit Union // Meshey is the president and CEO of Desert Financial, Arizona’s largest credit union delivering comprehensive financial services and engaging in robust community outreach. Under his leadership, Desert Financial’s assets have grown exponentially to $6 billion. Role model: “I worked for Susan Frank for the first 22 years of my career at Desert Financial, and she prepared me well for the CEO role. While we were always a strong team, her heart and commitment to the community impacted me greatly.” Attraction to industry: “I’ve always been a numbers guy, so it really wasn’t a surprise for me to end up in financial services. The ‘a-ha’ for me is how much difference a well-managed credit union can make in the lives of its constituents, and how philanthropy can really drive business!”



B TODD PEARSON Regional president // Alaska USA Credit Union // Pearson is an experienced and talented leader with more than 20 years in the industry, most recently spending 11 years as president and CEO of an Arizona based credit union. As a native Arizonan and graduate of Arizona State University, Pearson has shown a long-standing dedication to serving his community and many non-profits throughout the region. Attraction to industry: “I’ve always had an affinity for the financial services industry, and was sure that would become my career path. Once inside the credit union movement, I knew it was where I belonged. The cooperative structure isn’t just an arbitrary tax status, but the backbone of an industry-wide model of collaboration.” Favorite book: “Books written by Jim Collins, Tom Peters and Simon Sinek have impacted me in life and business decisions.”

C KIM REEDY President and CEO // OneAZ Credit Union //



Since first joining as CFO in 2012, Reedy has overseen OneAZ’s growth in assets from $1.3 billion to $2.4 billion. With over 35 years of financial industry experience, Reedy enjoys working with his team to move OneAZ closer to its vision of being the preferred financial institution for all Arizonans. Role model: “Growing up, my father wasn’t really in my life. I’m grateful for two men that helped me understand my responsibility to the world. My maternal grandfather, Aden Toney, taught me the importance of honesty, integrity, and helping people. From my college coach, marathon runner Carl Hatfield, I learned that dedication is about relentlessly pursuing what you love and that adversity is part of the deal — it should be expected, challenged, and defeated.”

D KAREN ROCH President and CEO // Credit Union West // Roch has more than 30 years of experience within the credit union industry and became the president and CEO of Credit Union West in 2019. She is a proven leader in change management, with a laser focus that builds on the foundation of making Credit Union West an organization that cares for their employees, members and the communities it serves. Attraction to industry: “I started in the credit union industry as a high school student through a cooperative education program. I quickly learned how important financial success was to an individual’s own success and how much credit unions care and are there to help. I have been enamored ever since and am very passionate about our strong philosophy of people helping people.”

E RONALD WESTAD President and CEO // Arizona Federal Credit Union // E

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Since 1996, Westad has been the president and CEO of Arizona Federal Credit Union. He began with the credit union in 1987. He also serves on the board of directors of the Maricopa County Industrial Development Authority, Merchants Information Solutions, Inc., and 100 Club of Arizona. Professional advice: “No matter the industry you choose, take responsibility for how you present yourself to the world — no one and no thing causes or makes you act, speak, or think the way you do, those are your choices. Make your choices, and own them.” Prized possession: “My most prized possessions are thank you notes. The fact that individuals took their valuable time to acknowledge my impact on them, whether through words or deeds, is priceless.”

Now more than ever

WE’RE HERE FOR YOU. Even in uncertain times, our commercial lending experts are standing by to help you with your business banking needs. And we’re proud to announce ... we’re the only Arizona-based credit union with SBA preferred lending status, which means faster decisions and quicker turnarounds.

Business Banking | Commercial Lending | SBA Loans SBA Preferred Lending Partner (480) 609-0055 | Federally Insured by NCUA | Equal Housing Lender

banking & finance // FINANCIAL SERVICES

A LOU ANNE ALEXANDER Chief product officer // Early Warning // Alexander currently serves as chief product officer at Early Warning, guiding the design and delivery of payments, identity, and risk insight solutions that help financial institutions create amazing financial experiences. Over the past 30 years, Alexander has led some incredible projects, including working with partners across the financial industry to launch the Zelle Network in 2017. Prior to Early Warning, Alexander held executive positions at Wells Fargo, Wachovia and First Union National Banks. Alexander holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from North Carolina State University and an MBA from Queens University.


B BERNIE CLARK Executive vice president and head of Advisor Services Charles Schwab // Clark is a member of Charles Schwab’s Executive Council and leads Advisor Services, which serves independent Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs) across the United States. Clark oversees custody, practice management and consulting services to more than 7,500 independent investment advisory firms with $1.6 trillion under management. An industry leader, Clark has been named by Investment Advisor magazine as one of the 25 most influential people in the industry. Professional advice: “I would advise someone entering the financial services industry to select an employer that aligns with their personal values, and to say yes to opportunities as they come your way, even when they may be outside of your initial plan for your career.”



C MINDY GRAVES Vice president of customer experience operations // GM Financial // Graves serves as the vice president of customer experience operations of GM Financial. Graves started at GM Financial in November of 2002. With 15 years at AmeriCredit/GM Financial, Graves has worked in collections as a team member, team leader and assistant vice president. Most recently, Graves has had the opportunity to support the business in opening GM Financial’s second Customer Service Center in Chandler as vice president of customer experience operations. Leadership strength: “I am a passionate, enthusiastic people leader.”


D JASON PACK Senior vice president of operations // Freedom Financial Network Pack has a strong track record of delivering world-class customer service in highly competitive environments. He currently is responsible for customer service, payment operations, settlement negotiations and underwriting. His background includes vice president and director roles in Global Call Center Operations with ServiceMaster, Dollar Financial and Discover Card. Professional advice: “People are your greatest asset. Good people will always overcome technological, economic and cultural challenges. By working to develop the ability to understand, relate to and motivate people, one will in turn improve their ability to nurture an environment where people will succeed. When people succeed, the business succeeds.”

E GABRIELLE VITALE Executive vice president and chief compliance and ethics officer American Express //


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Vitale is responsible for protecting the company, its brand and its employees through guidance and expectations on regulatory and ethics-related matters. Her Amex career began in 1984 and she has held critical roles in finance, information security and risk management. Personal strengths: “Authentic leadership. My colleagues would say I am genuine, curious, and engaged. Being intentional and proactive drives clarity and progress. It’s important to learn from peers in your industry and cross industry. I believe in self-renewal and taking on new projects/roles to continue to grow.” Prized possessions: “My pets – can’t choose one. You’re accountable to their well-being, and they show appreciation/affection like no other.”

banking & finance // MORTGAGE LENDERS

A G. VERNON BABILON CEO // Tucson Old Pueblo Credit Union // The year 2020 marked 31 years that Babilon has been a top credit union executive. Babilon has focused on making TOPCU more progressive as well as identifying potential niches that would better serve the Tucson community. Today, TOPCU is the leader in financing affordable solar loans, provides reasonably priced services and lending solutions for area businesses, while its members utilize the latest technology to accomplish their banking needs. Professional advice: “Credit Unions provide an excellent opportunity for professional growth for employees that show the initiative to learn and cross-train. Make your interest known in advance. Take the time to learn something new on your own, off the clock. Network by seeking volunteer opportunities with credit union organizations.”



B LISA LUND President // Lund Mortgage Team // With more than 20 years’ experience in the broker world, Lund has held nearly every position from junior processor to president of her own company, Lund Mortgage Team. Located in Glendale, Lund and her team close more than 50 loans a month with a loan volume of $13 million per month on average. Professional advice: “Don’t worry about failing. Just always do your best and don’t be afraid of change. Embrace change and don’t be afraid to learn and grow. If something doesn’t work change it and try again. Never give up.” Personal strengths: “I really put myself in the client’s shoes. I work with them on a personal level and never make them feel like a transaction. I have put my heart into doing what is best for the client 100 percent of the time. I want to show them the human touch in this industry.”


C SCOTT ROBERTS Owner // AZ Lending Experts //


Roberts graduated from Texas Tech University in 2004 with a degree in business management and moved to Arizona where he started his career in the mortgage industry. Professional advice: “For someone entering our industry today, I would tell them to learn from someone who is established and does things the right way. Also, everything you do should be about the client and in their best interests.” Personal qualities: “My competitive nature which I got playing sports growing up. I always knew I wanted to do something in life where I helped people. My fear of blood kept me out of the medical field, so helping people purchase a home was a great alternative.”

D BILL ROGERS Founder, president and CEO // Homeowners Financial Group USA Rogers is a native Arizonan and graduate of ASU with over 25 years of experience in the mortgage industry. CEO and founder, he was instrumental in the development of Homeowners Financial Group and its unique culture. Rogers has been recognized by ASU W.P. Carey School of Business as a Sun Devil Select 100 and received the 2019 Founder’s Award from Industry Leaders of Arizona. He founded the nonprofit Care Fund, which helps families stay in their homes during their child’s extended health crisis. Role model: “Mona Miller, my life coach whom I met nearly 20 years ago, truly remolded me into who I am today. Mike Wold, my executive coach and a father figure from when I started HFG 16 years ago, has also helped me maintain balance through the highs and lows of business.”

E JOSHUA SHADE Market president // U.S. Bank // Shade’s banking career spans 20 years. He joined U.S. Bank in 2017 and was named Arizona market president in 2019. In addition to serving as market president, he also manages the commercial banking team, which focuses on banking middle market companies region-wide. Attraction to industry: “At U.S. Bank, I have opportunities to work with different companies and people every day, and my work is always interesting. We’re living in a time of significant change, making digital tools and trusting relationships in banking more relevant and important than ever before for our clients.” Favorite book: “I just finished ‘Dare to Lead’ by Brene Brown – an excellent book on leadership. I’m passionate about developing leadership potential in others, and this book really resonated with me.” 42 ABL | Nominate at


banking & finance // SBA LENDERS

A WADE RASMUSSEN President // Amerifund // Rasmussen is the president of Amerifund Inc. Founded in 1995, Amerifund provides commercial equipment financing and leasing to businesses throughout the United States. Role model: “Many of my role models are passionate business owners who I work with. They get up every day and do what they love. I enjoy learning about their businesses and helping them develop their businesses.” Attraction to industry: “More than 30 years ago, I wanted to learn more about business. As I helped different businesses, I learned each business had its own unique need for funding. I realized shortly thereafter that I enjoy helping entrepreneurs get funding to start and grow their businesses, and success comes from building relationships and helping others.”


B ALEX SHAFFER Regional president // Meadows Bank // Shaffer is a 20-year veteran of commercial banking in the Phoenix, Tucson, Las Vegas and Sacramento markets. He joined Meadows Bank most recently from US Bank in Phoenix, where he was vice president and relationship manager for emerging business. Shaffer was the highest producing emerging business relationship manager for all of US Bank in 2017. Source of pride: “The business owners and entrepreneurs that I have the privilege of partnering with make my job exciting and new each day. I look forward to working with this dynamic commercial banking team in Phoenix and partnering with local businesses to become their trusted financial advisor.”


C DESTIN SIMMONS Business development officer Southwestern Business Financing Corporation // Simmons currently serves as Business Development Officer for Southwestern Business Financing Corporation. As an Arizona native, Simmons brings 10 years of experience in the banking industry. He graduated from ASU in 2004 with his bachelor’s in finance and graduated from the prestigious Pacific Coast Banking School in 2012. Simmons started his career at a de novo bank in Peoria and has worked for community and mid-sized banks since that time. Holding titles such as senior credit analyst, vice president of lending and chief credit officer has given Simmons knowledge and expertise in all aspects of commercial lending.

D ADAM STUMP Regional sales manager, SBA lending // Wells Fargo Bank // Stump oversees an eight-member sales team that spans Arizona, Utah, New Mexico and Nevada. Role model: “My grandpa was an LAPD Detective who was fortunate enough to have a long retirement. In his retirement, he never stopped working, volunteering in the community. His example taught me the power of hard work, service to others and to always be generous with your time.” Attraction to industry: “I love the challenge of SBA. When I started with no SBA experience 14 years ago to now, I have seen an ever-changing landscape, including financial markets, regulations and evolving guidelines. I am fortunate to be able to help people achieve their business goals, which in turn supports their families. I have learned a ton about small businesses along the way.”

E MARK YOUNG President and CEO // National Bank of Arizona // Young was appointed to his current role in June 2015. He is also an executive vice president of Zions Bancorporation and serves on the Bancorporation executive management committee. Young has been part of the Zions Bancorporation team for 19 years and prior to joining NB|AZ, Young was an executive vice president and executive director of real estate banking at California Bank & Trust and Bank One. He earned his MBA from Arizona State University. Professional advice: “It’s important to have a strong understanding of financial disciplines and be both a creative and strategic thinker. Advocate for your community and develop three to five key personal and professional relationships.” A

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Ready for growth? | Equipment Financing & Leasing | Working Capital | Franchise Financing | Vendor Relations

banking & finance // WEALTH MANAGEMENT A JEFF BRAMMER Lead financial guide // Alerus // Brammer joined Alerus in 2017, and has more than 13 years’ experience in the financial industry. With past experience at other financial institutions in consumer and small business sectors, Brammer has enjoyed developing a breadth of knowledge of the Phoenix Metro market. In his current role, he prides himself on providing a holistic and client-centric approach to each financial situation. Attraction to industry: “The opportunity of being in a stable, established line of work. Once again, we are facing an unprecedented time in the U.S. and I know I am in a place and with a team that will come out of this in a great position to continue to grow.” Surprising fact: “My great-great grandfather is Aaron Burr. Interesting considering my career is in finance. Sorry, Hamilton.”



B THERESA CHACOPULOS Private wealth advisor, senior vice president Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management Chacopulos works exclusively with ultra-high net worth families and individuals, helping them create customized wealth management strategies that address every aspect of their financial lives. A 33-year financial services veteran, she has earned Certified Financial Planner and Certified Investment Management Analyst designations. Professional advice: “I would encourage someone entering into the industry to obtain their (Certified Financial Planner) designation. That gives them the training they need to address a broad spectrum of their client needs.” Personal strengths: “Listen and put the needs of your clients first and never stop educating yourself.”


C VICKIE LARSEN Senior vice president, market director // BOK Financial // Larsen has worked in the financial service industry for more than 35 years and is the market director for BOK Financial Private Wealth in Arizona and New Mexico. Larsen leads a wealth management team that provides integrated strategy and execution in multiple disciplines including: investment management, trust guidance and administration, expert financial planning, and private banking for high-net-worth individuals and families. Attraction to industry: “I grew up in the restaurant business and appreciated serving and helping people. I was attracted to banking primarily to have the ability to work a Monday through Friday week, it was luck really. Once I started, I never looked back. I truly love every job I have had in the financial industry since starting as a teller.”

D DILLAN MICUS Executive vice president // Equitable Advisors Southwest


Micus serves as one of the highest-ranking members of Equitable in the region. When he took the position in 2005 – at just 29 – he became the youngest-ever executive vice president in the region’s history. Being young himself, he put his trust in like-minded young leaders and together more than quadrupled the firm’s revenue (from $4 million to $20 million) during what was – for many – the most devastating economic climate in recent memory. Toughest challenge: “There are record numbers of people entering retirement years and/or moving toward the transfer of their wealth. Education – both educating associates to effectively assist with the distribution and transfer of wealth, and educating the aging population itself – is a critical trend that can positively impact our industry.”

E SCOTT PORTER Founding partner, executive vice president of wealth management Bennett & Porter // E

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Porter brings more than 17 years’ financial planning and wealth management experience as a CFP and EVP and partner at Bennett & Porter, where he runs the wealth management division. Priding himself on helping clients understand their options for protecting and growing wealth, Porter specializes in tax strategy and alternative investments. As an Angel Investor of BusyKid, the leading chores app, Porter has a passion to help families gain financial literacy, build wealth, and live better futures. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to the industry because of my desire to learn more about investments and ways to grow wealth, etc. I think I was most surprised by the large gap in people understanding how money/investments work and the impact it has on their lives.


Congratulations to Alerus Market President Rob Schwister for being selected as an AZ Business Leader! With 20 years of financial services experience, Rob has a strong understanding of the Arizona business culture. He has built a reputation of dependability and determination. His full commitment to our community is an inspiration to us all.

For a wealth of financial options, call 800.279.3200.

banking & finance // WEALTH MANAGEMENT

A KORY LEADON Managing director // Brighton Jones // More than two decades of serving individuals and families as a personal CFO, Leadon helps his clients plan for their financial future and ultimately live a richer life. By protecting and growing their overall balance sheet, his role is much bigger than providing financial peace of mind. It’s all about his clients’ happiness. Attraction to industry: “I’ve always wanted to help my family and friends enjoy life, be happy and make smart financial decisions. What surprised me the most about my industry was that happiness wasn’t found by having more money. I’ve learned that happiness is a skill you can practice and become happier when financial, emotional, social and physical wellbeing come together.”


B ELIZABETH SHABAKER CEO // Versant Capital Management //


Shabaker is the CEO of Versant Capital Management, a Phoenix-based wealth management and investment firm with more than $900 million in assets under care. A financial advisor with 24 years of experience, Shabaker manages Versant’s strategic direction, builds talent for future growth, and directs operations in investments, client management, and human resources. Specializing in all aspects of wealth management, she focuses on investments, financial planning, estate planning, tax planning and consulting, family governance, next-generation education and planning, and philanthropy. Shabaker’s reach goes beyond the financial arena, supporting women and children through a rigorous commitment to philanthropy and mentoring.


C RUTH URBAN President and CEO // On the Money // E


Urban is president and CEO of On the Money, an accounting and bookkeeping firm in Phoenix. The company’s mission is to help businesses take control of finances. As a certified Profit First professional, Urban serves as a trusted advisor to clients, helping them build highly profitable businesses. Attraction to industry: “I came into this industry by happenstance. In 2004, I was a single mom recovering from a failed business. I knew bookkeeping and discovered a need. I didn’t plan on staying in this industry. I discovered accounting’s impact on businesses’ success. I love working with entrepreneurs and found my passion.” Surprising fact: “Before starting On the Money, I was in event entertainment. I met President and Barbara Bush and worked with Ray Charles, Glen Campbell and Joel Grey.”

D LENNARD VAN DER FELTZ Founding partner // Pinnacle Financial Advisors // Van Der Feltz is a founding partner of Pinnacle Financial Advisors, which assists individuals, families and businesses with financial planning and wealth management. With more than three decades of experience in the business world, holding positions in business operations and information technology, he has dedicated nearly half of that time to the craft of financial planning, specializing in investment and insurance optimization for tax efficiency. Professional advice: “Once upon a time, you could start out as a single advisor and easily build a book of business. Nowadays, that’s almost impossible unless you become ultra-specialized which also makes it harder to build critical mass. Join a team of advisors where you can learn while growing into leadership.”

E TREVOR WILDE Managing director // Wilde Wealth Management Group // Wilde – an Investment Advisor Representative who holds the Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF) designation – is co-founder and managing director of Wilde Wealth Management Group, an awardwinning independent financial advisory firm providing comprehensive retirement, investment, real estate, insurance, legal and tax planning services all under one roof with offices in Scottsdale, Tempe, Glendale, Tucson and Payson. Wilde has 11 times been recognized by Barron’s as among the top 1,200 advisors nationwide, ranking fourth in Arizona in 2019, and has been among the Top 15 Advisors out of more than 1,200 Cetera Advisors annually since 2012. Professional advice: “Make time for the important things in life. There is no pause button.” 48 ABL | Nominate at

Whether you want to save for the future or celebrate today, give back to the community or explore the globe, your values are every bit as unique as your fingerprints. The challenge is aligning your time and resources to those values, so you can go after the things you truly care about. For us, protecting and growing your wealth is a foundational part of that journey. But our goal is bigger than your financial peace of mind—it’s your happiness. We want to be the partner that helps you align your wealth, your passions, and your purpose, so you can pursue the life that truly fulfills.

Your Richer Life. learn more:

Kory Leadon | Your Personal CFO 480.353.2456

banking & finance // TUCSON BANKING & FINANCIAL

A KEVIN CUTTER Executive vice president and regional president Pacific Premier Bank // Cutter has worked in the banking industry since 1992, specializing in credit, relationship management, commercial real estate, construction lending, and risk management. His previous employers include City National Bank, Allied Irish Bank, and Bank of America. Role model: “The 14th Dalai Lama is a role model for me because he practices love and compassion. When he won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, I took notice of his leadership qualities and his desire to help others. My career purpose has been to lead by example and to help my colleagues and clients succeed every day.” Favorite book: “‘Start With Why,’ by Simon Sinek. I have taught principles from this book to my sales colleagues because as Simon Sinek explains, ‘People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.’”


B KIM DEES Senior vice president and Southern Arizona division manager WaFd Bank Arizona // Dees oversees operations at the bank’s 12 branches in Southern Arizona. She has more than 30 years of experience and is both an industry and Southern Arizona expert in mortgage lending, retail banking, commercial lending, consumer lending, treasury management and portfolio management. Attraction to industry: “I stumbled into banking seeking a professional job that focused on helping people. I learned quickly that it was more than cashing a check or processing a deposit for a client. Being a banker comes with a lot of responsibility as a trusted advisor to a person’s financial wellbeing.” Favorite book: “I really like the book ‘Team of Teams.’ The quote, ‘Being part of a team that has learned to play as a coordinated whole’ inspires me to be better.”


C ADRIANA KONG ROMERO Tucson market president // Bank of America // Kong Romero serves as Bank of America’s local enterprise leader in Tucson, helping to create a more sustainable future for the companies and community that she serves. With a goal of delivering one company, Kong Romero works across the region to connect Bank of America’s business lines to deliver integrated financial services to individuals, families and businesses. Kong Romero also leads Bank of America’s corporate social responsibility work in the region, leveraging the unmatched capabilities of the company to help partners, people, communities and a broad client and customer base more effectively address a wide range of issues. Professional advice: “Never stop learning and always be intellectually curious. Find balance between life, work, family and friends.”

D ERIC RENAUD President and CEO // Pima Federal Credit Union // Renaud became CEO of Pima Federal Credit Union in late 2015, previously holding the position of executive vice president and CFO. His journey through financial services has taken him from a small cooperative bank in Northeast Massachusetts, to commercial banking in Upstate New York, to a progressive credit union in Tucson. Professional advice: “Stay informed and actively seek out and develop relationships that will foster futuristic thinking, challenge the status quo, and never give up on being a better person each day.” Prized possession: “A handmade drum from the Cowlitz Indian/Native American Tribe. I received it through a Rotary event when I worked in Vancouver, Washington State. It is special to me because of the drum’s special significance, uniqueness and meaning within the tribe.”

E ROBERT SWICK President and general manager // Hughes Federal Credit Union // Swick serves as both president and the treasurer of the volunteer board and has reported on the financial position since 1987. With 33 years of executive leadership and 20 years serving as president and general manager, Swick has overseen Hughes’ growth from $239 million assets and 31,500 members to more than $1.2 billion assets and 130,000 members. Personal qualities: “Personal qualities that helped with my success are loyalty, commitment to the organization, realism, work ethic and leadership. Work ethic and commitment to the Credit Union mission led to always doing the right thing. Realism led my decisions and leadership garnered the support of the organization’s board and personnel.” 50 ABL | Nominate at


You deserve more than

blah, blah, blah. Congratulations to our very own Kevin Cutter recognized as an AZ Business Leader 2021 Kevin Cutter

Member FDIC

EVP / Regional President 602.445.6568

Š2020, Forbes Media LLC. Used with permission.

Bio boom healthcare // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Here’s what the rise of the healthcare and bioscience sectors in Central Phoenix means for the economy By AZ BUSINESS LEADERS


n Phoenix, the nation’s fifth largest city, a unique hub for healthcare and bioscience industries is rising in a revitalized part of the community. Phoenix’s healthcare hub is becoming increasingly critical as a result of the pandemic, but a boom was already underway in midtown Phoenix, making healthcare and bioscience among the fastest-growing industries in the greater Phoenix marketplace.

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This hub deserves a closer look because it is an ideal ecosystem for healthcare innovation. “This is the highest density of bioscience healthcare workforce in Arizona, and sits among the West’s leaders,” said Christine Mackay, director, Phoenix Community and Economic Development. “Quality, experienced workforce is one of the first reasons life and bio-science companies are selecting Phoenix.” The area is home to Creighton University’s new $100 million Health Sciences Campus, which is currently under construction. At the core geography is a major health system — Dignity Health’s headquarters on site at the iconic redeveloped former outdoor mall and now multi-use hub, Park Central. Next door is the prestigious St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, and 800 yards away is Banner Health System’s headquarters. Just two miles to the south of this core lies the 30-acre Phoenix Biomedical Campus, where all three major Arizona

public universities — Arizona State University, University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University — along with the Dignity Health Cancer Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) an affiliate of City of Hope and Exact Sciences are a few of its tenants.

Impact of projects

Add to this the business-friendly climate in Arizona, and the result is that projects such as Park Central are actually adding office tenants in the pandemic instead of losing them. The project is seeing tremendous activity from health-related tenants seeking a place in this magnet of innovation. Some of the numbers are staggering, as Arizona is ramping up its overall healthcare infrastructure.

• Construction is underway or about to begin inside the city of Phoenix for bioscience healthcare facilities with a capital value of more than $3 billion, according to the data compiled by Phoenix Community and Economic Development. • More than 4.5 million square feet of new Phoenix bioscience healthcare facilities are under development. • More than 7,000 new bioscience healthcare jobs will be created in Phoenix during this time. • Midtown Phoenix has 10 major healthcare and education centers, including a university, two large hospital campuses

LEADING THE WAY: Creighton University – a Jesuit, Catholic University located in Omaha, Nebraska – is building a new, nearly $100 million health sciences campus at Park Central in midtown Phoenix, a significant expansion of the University’s current presence in the state. (Photo by Mike Mertes, AZ Big Media)

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healthcare // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Chris Camacho

Sharon Harper

Christine Mackay

“The healthcare and bioscience industries are really pacing economic growth in Arizona.” — Chris Camacho

and several new bioscience centers. • Venture capital funding in greater Phoenix for bioscience healthcare is growing at one of the fastest rates in the country. • And as a result, construction of supporting residential, lodging and retail uses are booming in the area • In November 2020, there are more than 20 cranes on the Downtown Phoenix skyline, more than any other time in its history. Rider Levett Bucknall’s “Crane Count” placed Phoenix fourth in the U.S. and one of only five cities with an uptick in midand high-rise development in the third quarter 2020 compared to a year earlier All of this growth and innovation in healthcare, bioscience and medical devices has created a critical mass for Phoenix that is cementing its place as a healthcare destination for institutions, healthcare professionals, patients and all businesses that support them. “The healthcare and bioscience industries are really pacing economic growth in Arizona,” said Chris Camacho, president and CEO of GPEC. “Not only are they creating jobs and investment, the overall quality of the healthcare provided in Arizona is world-renowned and is an economic development tool in itself. Healthcare is making our entire state a more desirable place to live and work.” 54 ABL | Nominate at

Hot spots

One of the busiest locations for healthcare construction centers around Park Central in midtown, where several key initiatives are taking place. Along with the new Creighton University Health Sciences Campus, which is scheduled to open in 2021, it is home to a new facility for West Coast Ultrasound Institute and the new WearTech medical device lab. Park Central is already home to Dignity Health’s regional headquarters and is adjacent to the St. Joseph’s Hospital complex — where a new tower is being built for Barrow Neurological Institute. Sharon Harper, chairman and CEO of Plaza Companies, one of the co-developers of Park Central, said that the growth in the area is the result of a purposeful effort to broaden the regional economy. “It is critical to have broad-based economic growth if we truly want to maximize Phoenix’s potential,” Harper said. “Healthcare and bioscience are important industries in that they have a long-term, positive impact on our communities in many ways. They enable growth in other industries and create the kind of economic impact that has a huge ripple effect on other industries.” Mackay said that the overall growth in healthcare and bioscience has created a

ripple effect throughout the community in industries that are also benefiting from the increased investment. “We’ve already seen a significant uptick in construction activity in general in the midtown and downtown areas, and healthcare has played an important role in that,” she said. “But the healthcare boom is also leading to a boom in residential construction, retail, service industries, education and much more. It’s a leading indicator for a broader base of economic growth.” And the healthcare boom is not just about quantity, it’s about quality. The healthcare and bioscience organizations that are growing and expanding in the midtown Phoenix area are among the most highly regarded in the country and the world, further enhancing Phoenix’s reputation as a medical hub. “When you see Creighton University make a commitment as they have to Phoenix, and when you see the growth and expansion of Barrow Neurological Institute and Banner Health in the area, it’s clear that Phoenix’s reputation for quality health care is growing,” Camacho said. “We look forward to seeing this trend continue in the future and the positive impact it will have on our overall quality of life.”


A PEGGY CHASE President and CEO // Terros Health // Chase is a dynamic health leader who makes a positive impact by working collaboratively with providers, stakeholders, payers and policymakers. She leads with compassion to mentor and grow new leaders. Among her contributions to Arizona’s health care system are successful recovery services, healthy families, early adoption of integrated primary and behavioral care, and medication-assisted treatment. Attraction to industry: “I entered healthcare and behavioral health by chance. As finance manager, I was immediately drawn to people in need and those living in challenging situations. Thirty years later, I still love the work and the people, and I am amazed by our caring, selfless employees. They inspire me every day.”


B PETER FINE President and CEO // Banner Health //


Fine was appointed president and CEO of Phoenix-based Banner Health in November 2000. Banner employs 50,000 people and has approximately $8 billion in revenue. It is Arizona’s largest private employer. Role model: “I don’t have one specific role model but have been influenced in my career by three people and the lessons learned. Lessons learned: 1. Visibility breeds credibility, credibility breeds trust, if you want to be trusted you better be visible. 2. Plan the work and work the plan. 3. Tune out the static. Learn what noise is important to listen to and what noise can be tuned out.” Surprising fact: “I was a taxi cab driver in New York for four summers, and was a ski bum in Aspen for a year.”

C RICHARD GRAY, MD CEO // Mayo Clinic of Arizona // Dr. Gray co-chaired a project to implement a unified electronic health record for the entire organization. This initiative involved updating more than 170,000 devices, training more than 50,000 end users, and coordinating multiple implementations at all Mayo Clinic sites. Dr. Gray is also deeply involved in the education of physicians in training, practicing physicians and the public. In addition to being a patient education champion, he has been recognized as an esteemed educator, including his selection as Mayo Clinic Distinguished Educator of the Year in 2013. From a research perspective, Dr. Gray primarily focuses on breast cancer, sarcomas and melanoma, as well as reducing pain in treatment and recurrence following treatment. He has published more than 140 research manuscripts.

D LINDA HUNT President and CEO // Dignity Healthcare //


Hunt oversees Dignity Health’s Arizona service area, which is anchored by five outstanding hospitals, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Chandler Regional Medical Center, Mercy Gilbert Medical Center, St. Joseph’s Westgate Medical Center and Arizona General Hospital. Under Hunt’s leadership, Dignity Health in Arizona has grown into a respected and comprehensive health care system, which also includes imaging centers, specialty hospitals, physician groups, clinics, freestanding emergency rooms, urgent cares, insurance providers, an accountable care organization, a medical school campus and other clinical partnerships. During her previous role as president and CEO of St. Joseph’s Hospital, the 593-bed facility became the busiest hospital in Arizona.

E DAVID JACOFSKY, MD Chairman and CEO // The CORE Institute and HOPCo //



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Dr. Jacofsky is a respected authority in complex adult joint reconstruction and oncology, has an extensive background in business management and is a leading authority on healthcare reform strategies. He is founder, CEO and chairman of Healthcare Outcomes Performance Co. (HOPCo) and The CORE Institute. Role model: “My father was my greatest business mentor. He always told me, “great ideas don’t make a great business, but great teams that can execute great ideas drive success.” He constantly made sure I understood the difference. The best leaders create the best teams, not just the best ideas.” Professional advice: “Think outside the box during these times of rapid change. The difference between a stumbling block and a stepping stone is usually based solely on perspective and creativity.”


A JOHN JULIAN President and CEO // NextCare Urgent Care // Julian joined NextCare Urgent Care in June 2010 as the president and CEO. Julian has over 20 years of experience successfully operating a wide range of healthcare services companies including medical equipment, respiratory services, pharmaceuticals, infusion therapy and urgent care. In addition, Julian has extensive experience in mergers and acquisitions. Prior to joining NextCare Urgent Care, Julian spent several years founding and operating start-up companies in the pharmacy and personal services industries and provided consulting services for mergers and acquisitions in the healthcare industry. Professional advice: “Realize that you can’t do it all yourself. Build a good team around yourself, be humble and give credit where it is due.”


B TODD LAPORTE CEO // HonorHealth //


With more than 35 years of diverse healthcare experience, LaPorte leads an integrated health system with six acute-care hospitals, numerous outpatient facilities, a research institute, and various community services impacting social determinants of health and military preparedness. HonorHealth is Arizona’s seventh largest employer. Personal strengths: “I am willing to spend that extra time in preparation to deliver extraordinary results. I use my financial expertise and analytical acumen, combined with my enthusiasm, to pursue HonorHealth’s mission – to improve the health and well-being of those we serve. I get an enormous sense of joy when accomplishing goals as a team. This joy was instilled in me at a very early age playing team sports.”

C FRANK MOLINARO Market CEO // Abrazo Community Health Network //


Molinaro is CEO of Abrazo Community Health Network and Arizona Group CEO for Tenet Healthcare. The Abrazo network includes Abrazo Arizona Heart Hospital, Abrazo Arrowhead Campus, Abrazo Central Campus, Abrazo Mesa Hospital, Abrazo Scottsdale Campus and Abrazo West Campus. Personal strengths: “Patience and perseverance are two key factors. One of the things I learned early on is that strategies take time and you don’t usually see immediate results. I’ve been fortunate to work with physicians and colleagues who focus on long term success.” Professional advice: “Listen to your customers. Typically, hospitals as a whole are not connected well enough to our patients, their families and our physicians. The more we listen to our customers, the better suited we will be able to adapt to changes in our industry.”

D STEVE PURVES President and CEO // Valleywise Health // Purves has served as president and CEO of Valleywise Health since 2013 and is actively involved in the community. He has over 40 years of service as a healthcare executive. Attraction to industry: “My attraction to healthcare first came from fitness and participation in sports. Ultimately, I was fascinated with the idea that you could impact the health of a large population of people by how well you understood and managed the business and organizational side of health care delivery. What has surprised me the most is the rapid pace of technology and its impact on health and healthcare.” Surprising fact: “I was a competitive table tennis player and served as the assistant coach of the Saudi Arabian national junior table tennis team during the summer of 1976.”


E FLORENCE SPYROW President and CEO // Northern Arizona Healthcare // Spyrow, MSN, MPA/MHA, JD, FACHE, was named NAH president and CEO in October 2018 after serving as interim president and CEO for six months. She joined Northern Arizona Healthcare as chief administrative officer of Flagstaff Medical Center in 2015. Prior to joining NAH, Spyrow served as interim chief executive officer at Healthtech Management Services in Geneseo, Ill., where she directed and coordinated hospital activities and employed physician practices at Hammond-Henry Hospital. Spyrow earned a bachelor’s in nursing from San Jose State University; a master’s of public administration/health administration from Portland State University; a master’s in nursing from Oregon Health Sciences University in Portland, Ore.; and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Iowa in Iowa City. Nominate at | ABL 57


A GABRIELLE FINLEY-HAZLE President and CEO // St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center // Finley-Hazle is president and CEO of Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, a 586-bed not-for-profit hospital that is a nationally recognized center for advanced medical care, medical research and education. Finley-Hazle also serves as president and CEO of Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Westgate Medical Center, a 23-bed not-for-profit hospital located in Glendale, AZ and various Dignity Health satellite operations throughout the greater Phoenix area. Finley-Hazle leads a team of more than 5,000 employees who are dedicated to providing patient care and improving the quality of life in the community. She is a servant leader who focuses on improving the health of patients as well as the communities she serves; and is a strong advocate of employee engagement and development.


B GREGORY JAHN CEO // St. Luke’s Behavioral Health Center //


Jahn began as a registered nurse and joined St. Luke’s Behavioral Health Center in 1973, splitting time between Medical Intensive Care and Chemical Dependency. The passion for behavioral health took hold quickly and became a full-time endeavor for Jahn. He has served as St. Luke’s administrator and CEO for the past 10 years. Personal qualities: “I was trained as an RN. Caring for patients has always remained with me as I migrated to an administrator throughout my career.” Professional advice: “The best advice I received from a former CEO who always taught me by example and that is the simple rule of treating others as you would like to be treated, regardless of the situation.”

C MICHAEL LAWTON, MD President and CEO // Barrow Neurological Institute // Dr. Lawton is the president and CEO of Barrow Neurological Institute and the chair of the Department of Neurosurgery. He is board certified by the American Board of Neurological Surgery. Dr. Lawton’s neurosurgical expertise includes cerebrovascular disorders (aneurysms, arteriovenous malformations, cavernous malformations, and stroke) and skull base tumors. He has experience in treating more than 4,000 brain aneurysms, 800 AVMs, and 1,000 cavernous malformations. He is a member of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, Congress of Neurological Surgeons, Society of Neurological Surgeons, American Academy of Neurological Surgery, and World Academy of Neurological Surgery. Dr. Lawton received his medical degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.


D ROBERT MEYER President and CEO // Phoenix Children’s Hospital // Meyer had his work cut out for him when he was appointed president and CEO of Phoenix Children’s Hospital in 2003. With an entrepreneurial mindset and a gift for recognizing and seizing new opportunities, he helped lead the transformation of Phoenix Children’s. What was once a small children’s hospital on the brink of bankruptcy is now a statewide, interconnected pediatric health system with sites of service around the state and a network of more than 1,000 community physicians and specialists. Personal strengths: “My finance consulting background as a CPA, combined with a passion for helping children, made my role at Phoenix Children’s seem a natural fit. Gratefully, I also had the opportunity to hire the best executives and leaders in the industry.”

E JUDY RICH, RN, MSN President and CEO // TMC HealthCare //


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Rich has had a varied healthcare career since she received an undergraduate degree in nursing from New York’s Roberts Wesleyan College and a master of science in nursing from the University of Pennsylvania. Rich serves on the boards of the American Hospital Association, Vizient West Coast and Southern Arizona Leadership Council. She is the immediate past chair of the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association. Personal qualities: “Always say yes to opportunity and challenge even if it changes your direction. By embracing change and approaching challenges as opportunities, I have experienced professional growth and success that I could never have imagined as a new frontline nurse.”

20 20 IN

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healthcare // HEALTH INSURANCE

A R. ALLAN ALLFORD President and CEO // Delta Dental of Arizona // Allford is the president and CEO of Delta Dental of Arizona, the leading dental benefits insurance company in the state, and is also president of the Delta Dental of Arizona Foundation, which helps provide access to dental services for Arizonans in need. Favorite book: “It’s probably a tie between ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘To Kill A Mockingbird.’ Both are such powerful novels.” Surprising fact: “I initially wanted to be an architect. Reflecting on it, I think being a CEO and an architect are more similar than I imagined. In each career the challenge is not only to address existing practical needs, but to also imagine and envision future needs, challenges, and conditions, translating them into a strategy, design and solution.”


B THOM AS GROTE CEO // Banner |Aetna // Grote leads the Banner|Aetna joint venture as its CEO. He is responsible for building a more sustainable model of care enhanced by a distinctive member experience for Banner|Aetna members throughout Arizona. He is also responsible for improving product offerings while lowering costs and for creating a clinically connected network while growing the company’s footprint throughout Arizona. Role model: “I learned an enormous amount watching Ron Williams and Mark Bertolini successfully grow Aetna. Ron and Mark had very contrasting management approaches, but each was able to lead Aetna response to the varied needs of the marketplace during their tenures. They taught me how different leadership styles can be successful.”




C HEATHER KANE CEO, Arizona and New Mexico // UnitedHealthcare // Kane is the CEO of the Arizona and New Mexico markets for UnitedHealthcare, based in the company’s Phoenix office. She brings 17 years of leadership and healthcare experience to UnitedHealthcare. Attraction to industry: “I’ve always been intrigued by what an integral role health and access to health care play in every individual’s ability to live well and pursue their passions. It was a career path that gave me the opportunity to help connect people to needed resources, work with great team members, and have a real impact in our community.” Favorite book: “‘The Power of Habit,’ by Charles Duhigg. This is a tremendous book about creating discipline around activities and routines that have a positive impact.”

D PAM KEHALY President and CEO // Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona // Kehaly joined Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona in November 2017 and is responsible for the strategic direction and financial performance of the 1,700-employee company. Through Kehaly’s leadership, BCBSAZ is inspiring Arizonans to achieve their ideal health. With a focus on connecting people with the care they need, BCBSAZ offers health insurance and related services to nearly 1.5 million customers. Professional advice: “The healthcare market is changing, and sometimes the road to your goal may be uncharted. Take the time to explore, analyze and plan. Once you have a path, be brave and consistent. Health insurance is no longer focused simply on transactions, it is becoming a system that can help people live better, healthier, longer lives. With focus and commitment, you can make real change.”

E MARTHA SMITH Plan president and CEO // Arizona Complete Health // Smith is responsible for executive management and oversight of Arizona Complete Health and Care1st Health Plan. She joined the organization (parent Health Net/Centene) in 1996 and has held progressive management positions across numerous regions and product lines during her tenure. Attraction to industry: “I grew up in a clinical family. I was far more geared toward business and finance. So the managed care industry was a natural fit.” Favorite book: “‘Hamilton,’ by Ron Chernow. It taught me that intelligence and work ethic are not enough. You have to exercise good judgement and restraint to truly have a lasting impact and be an effective leader.” 60 ABL | Nominate at


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A CHRIS COHN Founder // Scottsdale Recovery Center // Cohn brings strength, hope and inspiration to the organization as well as a strong desire and passion to help people get sober. Cohn was born and raised in Arizona and is well connected in the business community, as well as the recovering community. Personal qualities: “Learning from people smarter and more experienced than myself, as well as having a sincere passion to help people overcome their substance abuse addictions. I’m in the business of helping people and I love what I do.” Professional advice: “Lead with passion and a desire to truly help people change their lives, not for the money. It’s a phenomenal industry if you’re into helping and potentially saving people’s lives, which is why I’m here. It gives me extreme satisfaction and purpose.”


B DR. LORRIE HENDERSON President and CEO // Jewish Family and Children’s Service //


Henderson is a healthcare and behavioral health executive leader with extensive experience working with hospitals, group homes, foster care, community-based services, prevention for children and families, developmental disabilities and residential programs in nonprofit and forprofit organizations. Attraction to industry: “The human service industry taught me how to successfully help others in need. While it provides a great sense of gratification, the lack of funding for essential services still continues to surprise me.” Favorite book: “‘The Power of Now,’ by Eckhart Tolle, is a guide for day-to-day living that stresses the importance of living in the present. It has had a profound effect on me, and I try to practice the teachings in my personal and professional life.”

C VALERIE KADING Group CEO // Sierra Tucson //


Kading, DNP, MBA, MSN, PMHNP-BC, is the Group CEO of the newly-formed Sierra Tucson Group of behavioral health facilities offering inpatient, residential, and outpatient treatment for substance use and co-occurring disorders. Formerly Chief Operating Officer of Sierra Tucson in Tucson, Arizona, Dr. Kading serves on the Sierra Tucson Executive Leadership Council, and heads up Sierra Tucson’s Alumni Services and the Connect365 continuing care treatment program. Source of pride: “It gives me great joy to see the innovative treatments that we have at Sierra Tucson. We are always looking for how we can improve what we do. We’re never satisfied with the status quo. We’re always looking at the new science, the new interventions that are provided or available and we’re doing it.”

D STEVEN SHEETS President and CEO // Southwest Behavioral & Health Services // Sheets has been with Southwest Behavioral & Health Services (SB&H) for eight years and has spent more than eight years in the behavioral healthcare industry. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Grand Canyon University and his master’s in professional counseling from Ottawa University. He has held an Arizona Independent Professional Counseling license since 2016. Attraction to industry: “I have always wanted to help people. No matter what area of work I have been in, helping others has always been a focus.” Favorite book: “Too many. The one I continually come back to is ‘The Gift of Therapy,’ by Irvin Yalom. Yalom has a unique ability to challenge therapists to think outside the box and creatively approach complex topics in the therapy realm.”

E BILL SOUTHWICK CEO // Banner Behavioral Health Hospital // Southwick has operational responsibility for Banner Health’s behavioral health services in Scottsdale (Banner Behavioral Health Hospital), Glendale (Banner Thunderbird Medical Center) and Sun City West (Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center). With nearly 31 years’ experience in behavioral health and more than 21 years in healthcare leadership, this nurse leader brings extensive experience and clinical know-how to this leadership role. Professional advice: “Recognize that the customer is at the center of everything we do and there are many different customers. From doctors, staff and patients, to communities and schools. Our focus is to improve health at all levels. There isn’t anything more enjoyable than making a difference at the end of the day.”

62 ABL | Nominate at



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healthcare // CANCER TREATMENT A CARLOS ARCE-LARA, MD Medical oncologist and hematologist // Alliance Cancer Care of Arizona // Dr. Arce-Lara is a board-certified medical oncologist and hematologist at Alliance Cancer Care Arizona’s Casa Grande location. Dr. Arce-Lara received his medical doctorate from Escuela Autónoma de Ciencias Medicas de Centroamérica in San Jose, Costa Rica. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Mercy Catholic Medical Center in Philadelphia. Attraction to industry: “Like many other cancer healthcare providers, I was drawn to oncology through personal experience with a family member. It was clear to me that I had a calling to help patients and their families during very difficult times. I know the importance of having a guide through diagnosis and treatments, and to be able to provide this kind of care and help is a privilege that I take very seriously.”


B ROBERT GOULD President and CEO // Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) Phoenix



Gould has more than 25 years of healthcare experience and a background in improving operational effectiveness, ensuring patient satisfaction and leading organizational growth. Prior to his role at Cancer Treatment Centers of America Phoenix, Gould served as president of the Arizona West Division at Banner Health in Phoenix. Personal strengths: “Over my career, my team members have told me that my calm demeanor in stressful or complex situations allows employees to feel at ease and empowered to take action. I’ve also received feedback that my listening skills enable me to establish trust and strong relationships with my colleagues.” Professional advice: “Be prepared for a bumpy ride and get creative. Healthcare is a turbulent industry right now, and the status-quo simply isn’t an option.”

C GORDON GRADO, MD Medical director // Southwest Oncology Centers // Dr. Grado received his bachelor’s degree in 1974 at Eastern Illinois University, medical degree in 1977 at Southern Illinois University, internship at the University of Chicago, and therapeutic radiology residency at Mayo Clinic with board certification. Personal strengths: “I was blessed to have inherited from my parents and family, the blessing and curse of hard work. One does not have to be the best, but to have the commitment and endurance to complete the task. As my grandmother said, ‘you don’t need luck, you create it for yourself.’” Professional advice: “In identifying and defining one’s goals, a compass is created that defines not only a direction and path, but a distance and timeline to achievement. There are no shortcuts. As my father would challenge, ‘What have you done for humanity today?’”


D DEVINDER SINGH President // Arizona Center for Cancer // In 1992 Dr. Singh founded Arizona Center for Hematology/Oncology and has served greater Phoenix ever since. In 2008, the practice name was changed to Arizona Center for Cancer Care to become a multi-specialty oncology group. Dr. Singh is a clinical assistant professor at Midwestern University. Personal strengths: “Having been an oncologist for over 25 years in Phoenix, I have recognized that providing compassionate care, being a good listener, and working relentlessly for my patients and their families is crucial to success in oncology. Always striving to embody these qualities has made me a better all-around physician.” Professional advice: “Always take time to listen to your patients and address their needs and concerns. Additionally, remember that the patient always comes first.”


64 ABL | Nominate at

E LAMONT YODER CEO // Banner Baywood Medical Center, Banner Heart Hospital, Banner Gateway Medical Center and Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center // Yoder is CEO of Banner Gateway Medical Center, Banner Baywood Medical Center, Banner Heart Hospital and the Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center. With more than 30 years of experience in healthcare, Yoder is responsible for the fastest growing campus in Banner Health, with Banner MD Anderson having served patients from all 50 states as well as other countries. Personal strengths: “Developing strong and meaningful relationships among diverse teams has always energized me. As CEO, it is critical to develop a high-performing executive team that can navigate the complexities of healthcare to make life easier for those we serve. I truly love this part of my job.”

DERMATOLOGY // healthcare

A RICHARD AVERITTE, JR., MD CEO and managing partner // Affiliated Dermatology // Dr. Averitte received his undergraduate degree from Ohio University and his medical degree from the Medical College of Ohio. Dr. Averitte completed his dermatology residency at Case Western Reserve University Hospitals of Cleveland. Dr. Averitte is the founder of the Arizona Skin Cancer Foundation. Personal strengths: “Tenacity and consistency have been the mainstays with regard to my success.” Prized possession: “The home I share with my wife and kids is my most prized possession. It isn’t just a house; it’s the place I can be myself and enjoy time with the people I love. It reflects our personalities and is comforting and inviting for family, friends and myself.”


B ROSEMARY GEARY, MD Owner and physician // East Valley Dermatology Center // After being associated with a couple of different dermatology practices, Dr. Geary had a clear vision of the foundation needed to deliver excellent patient care. This is why she founded East Valley Dermatology Center in 2003 and has grown the practice to be one of the most well-respected dermatology practices in Arizona. Personal strengths: “My passion and drive to provide the best dermatologic care is the foundation to my success. With my own personal struggles with my skin, it has helped me to see dermatology from the patient’s point of view. I practice medicine with extreme empathy to each patient.” Professional advice: “Surround yourself with a strong support team and stay true to the reason you became a doctor by helping patients with their dermatologic needs.”


C BILL HALMI, MD Arizona Advanced Dermatology // Dr. Halmi, a board-certified dermatologist and former assistant professor of Dermatology at Thomas Jefferson University, came to the Valley in 1994. Throughout his career he has been very active in teaching. He currently serves as an adjunct professor of dermatology at The Mayo Clinic. He has given numerous presentations at local, national and international dermatology conferences. Very active in the dermatology community he has served as president of the Southwest Dermatology Society, president of the Arizona Dermatology Society and president of the Phoenix Dermatology Society. For over 10 years he has been voted Top Doc in Phoenix Magazine. Dr. Halmi has worked for over 20 years with over 20 different types of lasers and has trained countless physicians in the safe use of lasers.

D LEE LARIS, DO Medical director and chief cosmetic surgeon Phoenix Skin Dermatology //


Dr. Laris is highly trained in all areas of medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatology and has built a national reputation as a facial rejuvenation specialist. Dr. Laris is recognized for his use of minimal incision surgery, with a focus on restoring youth via less invasive methods such as Y Lift, mini face lift, laser resurfacing, botox, fat transfer/dermal fillers and hair transplantation. Dr. Laris is one of the first certified hair transplant surgeons by the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgeons. Role model: “My eighth grade science teacher recognized my love of science and took me on a Saturday to a hospital where his friend was a surgeon. I watched surgeries all day long from the viewing area and was immediately hooked on surgery as a career.”

E THERESA MAGNE, MD U.S. Dermatology Partners // Dr. Magne joined North Valley Dermatology in 1995 after completing her medical residency in dermatology at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center in Chicago. She attended medical school at the University of Illinois College of Medicine and served an internship in internal medicine at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, Illinois. Passion for profession: “I am a fair-skinned redhead, so I was acquainted with the dermatologist from a very young age. It was after a lecture in dermatology, however, that I discovered my passion for the field. As the largest and most visible organ of the body, it is gratifying to witness directly the positive changes of our medical and cosmetic treatments.”



Nominate at | ABL 65

healthcare // DENTISTRY

A DR. JOHN BADOLATO Dentist and owner // Studio B Smiles // Dr. John Badolato (Dr. B) is the founder of Studio B Smiles. He is the team dentist of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Phoenix Suns, Phoenix Mercury and the Phoenix Suns Dancers. Dr. B was also the official cosmetic dentist for the ABC show Extreme Weight Loss. Role model: “My father, Bill Badolato, was my best friend and greatest mentor. He had an incredible business acumen gained from many years of experience. He helped me set up the necessary structure and building blocks that have led to my success. I try every day to follow in his footsteps.” Favorite book: “I love the book ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People,’ by Dale Carnegie. It has definitely helped form our motto at Studio B Smiles, ‘Your best interest is the only interest we will consider.” A

B PAUL DOUGLAS, DDS Founder // Douglas Family Dentistry // Dr. Douglas was born and raised in Scottsdale. He never went far from home, attending Saguaro High School, the University of Arizona for his undergraduate work and USC School of Dentistry. He is the founder of the Boys & Girls Club Dental Outreach Program and Painless Paul’s Smile Designs for Abused Women. Professional advice: “Educate yourself as much as possible about business. Receive a lot of training on the latest technology in dentistry and always be committed to continuing education courses.” Prized possession: “My most prized possession is the pretty amazing life I’ve had thus far. I wouldn’t change a thing in my life and would be come a dentist all over again if I had to start over.”


C CLARENCE PILSKY, DDS Owner // Biltmore Dental Group // D


Dr. Pilsky is a California native who moved to the Midwest at a young age. Growing up in a small town in Ohio helped shape his work ethic and caring nature. He attended Indiana University Bloomington, where he excelled in sciences and developed an interest in dentistry. Personal strengths: “I always try to treat people as I would want to be treated. Being honest and upfront about services and options.” Professional advice: “Keep up with new technology and diversify services, but know your limits. Confidence will grow with time. Be wary of getting in over your head early because it can hamper progress.”

D NICOLAS PORTER, DDS Founder // Risas Dental and Braces // Dr. Porter is a multi-award-winning business founder who specializes in industry disruption and customer satisfaction. Dr. Porter founded Risas Dental and Braces in 2011 and grew it into a hugely successful business by disrupting the dental industry and putting the customer first. As founder and president of Nicolas Global, he utilizes the same principles that have made his previous companies successful, and is currently disrupting the socialized commerce industry as founder and visionary of Trunited. Personal qualities: “I’m motivated by helping people. Business isn’t currently set up to help the average person. There are many areas in how we participate in commerce that need renovation and innovation, and I have been working tirelessly to make things better for that average person.”

E GINGER PRICE, DDS Cosmetic dentist // Ginger Price Dentistry // Dr. Price has been creating beautiful smiles right here in the Valley for almost 35 years. She is an artist as well as a dentist, bringing her artistic skill set to every custom smile she designs. She and her team are known for being very warm, friendly and — most importantly — gentle. Professional advice: “If you love people, have attention to detail and love learning, you at least have the key ingredients for being a dentist. Find someone who’s already a success and ask them to mentor you. With a great mentor, you can often fast forward your career and achieve greater goals than you would have otherwise. Always be teachable and humble and you’ll go far.” 66 ABL | Nominate at

An always and f orever kind of s mile

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healthcare // HEALTH AND BEAUTY

A KATHY COOVER Owner and executive vice president // Isagenix International // Coover is a nationally recognized trainer in the direct selling industry. Since 1992, Coover has become a top earner in three separate companies, generating millions in income. With more than 25 years’ experience, she and her husband, Jim, combined their talent to create one of the fastest-growing health and wellness companies in the world. Coover is responsible for developing one of the most dynamic training systems in the industry. Personal strengths: “I’ve always had a burning desire to impact people’s lives, both physically and financially. When I started Isagenix, I made the commitment that nothing was going to get in the way of doing that. Persistence, consistency and integrity have played a big role in my career.”


B MARYANN GUERRA CEO // Aesthetics Biomedical // Guerra spent her career facilitating the creation of successful and progressive health, science, technology and start-up businesses. She co-founded Aesthetics Biomedical (ABM) in 2016. ABM focuses on the identification of minimally invasive aesthetic devices, that are combined with products to ensure the best patient “experience” and outcome. Professional advice: “Aesthetics is an evolving industry that has grown dramatically over the past few years, having fierce competition. This provides opportunity to bring a higher credibility to the industry and marketplace through stronger clinical data. I encourage those entering this field to consider this as they determine the products they support and their marketing of new products.”




C DANNA PRATTE CEO // Nutritional Brands // Pratte is an entrepreneur and wellness enthusiast, and is CEO and owner of Nutritional Brands, a Phoenix based multinational company that provides high quality nutritionals and wellness solutions to its customers. She is an alumnus of Thunderbird, The International School of Management, where she received her Master of International Management degree. Pratte is a regular contributor to local and national media, and has been recognized as a business and thought leader in wellness. Professional advice: “Find what you are passionate about and go after it. Become immersed in that world. Learn, connect, make mistakes and laugh at them because the process will only make you stronger. Most importantly don’t be afraid to take risks. Find that entrepreneurial spirit.”

D BETH STILLER CEO // Massage Envy Franchising // Stiller is the CEO of Massage Envy, the largest provider of therapeutic massage and skin care services across its 1,150 franchise locations. She has more than 20 years of global and domestic experience in retail, branding, merchandising and management. Prior to the CEO role, Stiller served as Massage Envy’s chief commercial officer, and held positions with Walgreens, Duane Reade, Shoppers Drug Mart and Loblaws. Attraction to industry: “The retail industry is a business of constant and real-time feedback from your customers. It continues to surprise me that regardless of how sophisticated and data-driven we become, some of the best learnings come from a day in locations speaking to customers and the amazing teams that work with them every day.”

E CAROLANN TUTERA President // SottoPelle Therapy // Tutera is the CEO of SottoPelle, an international and locally based Arizona medical company. She is helping thousands of women and men every day deal with menopause, andropause. Tutera manages this high-profile BHRT company in a very competitive and demanding market. Her vision and dedication to the highest ethical and quality standards continue to propel SottoPelle to international success. Professional advice: “You can do ANYTHING. Surround yourself with people smarter and more creative than yourself, and let them inspire and challenge you. Lead by example, it’s a simple piece of advice but effective. Allow yourself to change and be open to new concepts and be creative every chance you get.” 70 ABL | Nominate at


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healthcare // PAIN MANAGEMENT

A CLIFFORD BAKER, MD Interventional spine and pain management NovaSpine Pain Institute // After receiving his undergraduate degree in Microbiology at the University of Arizona, Dr. Baker continued to do research in microbiology at the University of Arizona and was awarded a NASA Space grant to study the effects of microgravity on the immune system. He then received his Medical Degree at the University of Arizona in 2010 and went on to Loma Linda University Medical Center for his Internship and Residency in the field of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. During his internship in Internal Medicine, he was honored with the “Internal Medicine Resident of the Year Award” for his compassionate care and work ethic.


B DENNIS CRANDALL, MD Chairman and medical director // Sonoran Spine // Crandall is a board-certified orthopedic spine surgeon specializing in adult and pediatric spinal deformity and complex spine surgery. He founded the Sonoran Spine Research and Education Foundation, a nonprofit corporation which funds college scholarships for students with spinal deformities and spinal research projects. Professional advice: “Spinal Surgery is an incredibly demanding taskmaster, requiring your lifelong devotion and commitment to excellence. The patient’s best interest must be our only interest. Fully committed surgeons gain tremendous personal satisfaction from this work.” C

C CINDY GOLLIHAR Founder and CEO // Catalyst Pain Solutions // Gollihar is the founder of Catalyst Pain Solutions, which began with one clinic in 2006 and now serves the greater Phoenix and Tucson areas and is one of the leading pain mitigation organizations in Arizona. Professional advice: “Always put your patient first and success will follow. It is also important when you are putting together a team to look for healthcare providers that have a true desire to heal the patient. I look for compassion and a passion for healing when choosing members of my team.” Personal strengths: “The ability to recognize when things need to change and the tenacity to make the change. I realized the pain patient was being done a disservice. I assembled a team of unique healthcare providers and together we built treatment protocols unlike any others to treat many pain issues.”


D J. JULIAN GROVE, MD Board-certified anesthesiologist and pain management specialist Pain Consultants of Arizona // Dr. Grove is a double-board certified anesthesiologist and pain medicine specialist with training from Stanford University Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School. He is co-founder of Pain Consultants of Arizona, Physician’s Review Group and The Physician’s Choice CBD. Dr. Grove is a national lecturer on novel drug delivery systems, cancer pain, advancements in safer, less abusable pain medications and on CBD formulations for pain. Professional advice: “The medical field is more challenging than when I finished residency. Struggles with insurance companies to get patients the best care is a daily struggle. My advice would be to always put the patient first, the business of the practice and the headaches of managed care have to be secondary to a ‘patient first’ philosophy.”

E KELLY KROHN, MD The CORE Institute //


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Dr. Krohn is a board-certified and fellowship-trained rheumatologist. His primary interests are metabolic bone diseases, non-surgical management of knee osteoarthritis, fracture healing, spine fusion and rehabilitation. Attraction to industry: “I enjoy biology of bone and trying to prevent fracture in high risk patients. I spent 20-plus years in academic medicine and at a pharmaceutical company working on a drug for osteoporosis. I returned to clinical academic practice and enjoy seeing patients and teaching orthopedic residents from University of Arizona.” Surprising fact: “Most people do not know that I am truly a weekend cowboy-want-to-be. I own my family horse farm in North Dakota and love spending time riding and driving my horses.”



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healthcare // VISION

A ROBERT BULLINGTON, JR., MD Co-founder // Biltmore Eye Physicians // Bullington founded Biltmore Eye Physicians in September 1990 with his sister, Dr. Ann Bullington. The siblings founded the practice to provide ophthalmic care to patients in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area and its neighboring communities. Bullington received his bachelor of science degree from Arizona State University, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society. He received his medical degree from the University of Arizona, where he was a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society. Bullington completed fellowship training in cornea and extermal disease at the University of Texas at Houston. Bullington’s practice focuses on general ophthalmology with an emphasis on the treatment of corneal disease.


B SANFORD MORETSKY, DO Founder and managing partner // Moretsky Cassidy Lasik //


Dr. Moretsky has been in practice in Arizona since 1978 and is an expert eye surgeon. As a refractive surgeon, Dr. Moretsky performs iLASIK, KAMRA and implantable contact lenses. Dr. Moretsky is also an expert laser cataract surgeon, performing Toric, ReSTOR, Tecnis MF and Crystalens intraocular lens implantation. He is founder of Valley Eye Specialists and is a past president of the Phoenix Ophthalmologic Society and also served in a leadership position on the board of trustees of the Arizona Osteopathic Medical Association. Dr. Moretsky received the President’s Award by the Arizona Osteopathic Medical Association. He is an active member of the Arizona Ophthalmologic Society.

C SCOTT PERKINS, MD Surgeon and founding partner // Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center D


Perkins is one of the most experienced eye surgeons in the country. He has performed more than 100,000 cataract surgeries, more than 15,000 LASIK procedures and is one of the top three surgeons in volume in the US for ICL surgery. Additionally, he is the first user of the Toric ICL and the PanOptix Trifocal IOL in the Southwestern U.S. Role model: “My role model was unquestionably my father. He instilled the importance of hard work, perseverance, and having pride in one’s work. As a result, I became the first physician in my family.” Favorite book: “As a lover of international spy novels, I would say that my favorite book to date is ‘I am Pilgrim,’ by Terry Hayes. Reading fiction allows me to relax and visit other creative worlds.”

D ANDREW RABINOWITZ, MD Chief medical officer // Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center // Dr. Rabinowitz is responsible for the management of more than 110 physicians and health care providers. Dr. Rabinowitz is dedicated to ensuring that the doctors at all of the American Vision Partners affiliates maintain the most rigorous standards of training and provide the highest quality of care. Having practiced medicine for over 25 years, Dr. Rabinowitz is committed to ensuring the patient is their priority across the entire practice. Attraction to industry: “What attracted me to my industry was a family member who had severe eye disease as a child. I would go to her eye doctor visits with her, and I grew to think that the role of the eye doctor would be the coolest job in the world.” Surprising fact: “My dream job, after this one, would be to serve as the eye surgeon for a large zoo.” C

E DR. JAY SCHWARTZ Owner and surgeon // Schwartz Laser Eye Center // Dr. Schwartz is the team ophthalmologist for the Phoenix Suns, Arizona Diamondbacks, and Lasik surgeon for the Arizona Coyotes. Personal strengths: “I tend to have a positive view of things. When I started my business, I never had a thought of failure. From Day 1, I had a plan and executed that plan. The thought that it might not work truly never entered my mind.” Professional advice: “I would tell someone entering my industry to stay focused on your goals. Don’t expect things to just come to you. You need to make things happen. No one is going to give you any handouts in this business. Building a business takes dedication, hard work, and a vision of what you want it to become. I spent several years knocking on doors building referrals one at a time.”

74 ABL | Nominate at




Chief Medical Officer and Surgeon

Founding Partner and Surgeon

CONGRATULATIONS, DOCS! We are proud of Dr. Rabinowitz & Dr. Perkins for being honored as 2021 Business Leaders! Your invaluable experience and leadership skills guide us in offering world-class eye care to communities across the Southwest. From all of us at American Vision Partners – thank you!


healthcare // COSMETIC SURGERY

A ANTHONY ADMIRE, MD Admire Plastic Surgery // A native Arizonan, Dr. Admire has been practicing for more than 12 years. He is a nationally and locally recognized surgeon who specializes in the face, breasts and body. He has been the top votegetter in Phoenix magazine’s Top Docs feature for three of the last six years. Personal strengths: I’m a very hard working, driven to succeed person. I think that helps in all areas of my business. Professional advice: It’s very competitive and the inclination is to advertise and spend money like crazy to get your name out there. I suggest developing relationships with other physicians to develop relationships and keep the overhead costs as low as possible.

B ROBERT COHEN, MD, FACS Scottsdale Center for Plastic Surgery //



Dr. Cohen returned to his home town of Scottsdale, Arizona in 2005 to practice as a plastic surgeon in the Phoenix area after completing over 14 years of education and advanced training in some of the nation’s most prestigious institutions. After graduating cum laude from Phoenix Country Day School, Dr. Cohen attended top-ranked Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. In addition to his premedical studies, he received a double major in biology and philosophy, while graduating in the top of his class. Dr. Cohen received his medical training at Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans, Louisiana – a program famous for its intense hands-on training of medical students. He received honors in surgery, and published multiple research papers in plastic surgery journals.

C MICHELE DEVITO, MD, FACS Plastic surgeon // DeVito Plastic Surgery Center // Dr. DeVito is a board-certified Scottsdale plastic surgeon, specializing in cosmetic surgery of the face and body. She is a member of both the prestigious American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and has been listed as one of America’s top surgeons. Dr. DeVito is a fellow of both the American and International College of Surgeons. She also serves on the advisory board of the nonprofit organization Junior Fulfillment. Professional advice: Follow your heart to find your true passion in life. Everything else will fall into place and even the greatest challenges will be worth the struggle.


D THOMAS KOTOSKE, DO, FAOCO, FAACS Cosmetic Surgery Institute - Body By Kotoske //


Dr. Kotoske is a triple board-certified specialist in plastic surgery of the face and total body. He was awarded the prestigious American’s Top Physician by the Consumers Research Councils of America, as well as “Top Doc” by Phoenix magazine. He is a nationally recognized lecturer to facial plastic and cosmetic surgeons from across the country and has been a featured expert for CBS, NBC, FOX and ABC television affiliates on cosmetic and plastic surgery topics. He was chairman of the department of surgery at John C. Lincoln Deer Valley Hospital for more than 10 years. Professional advice:Always push yourself to be the best practitioner you can. Keep abreast of the latest in surgical advances and technology. Treat patients with respect, confidentiality and as you would like to be treated.


76 ABL | Nominate at

E SUSAN VAN DYKE, MD Founder // Van Dyke Aesthetics // Dr. Van Dyke is a board-certified dermatologist and owner of Van Dyke Aesthetics, one of the first medical practices in the world to specialize exclusively in cosmetic dermatology. The practice celebrates 34 yeasrs, 24 of which have been devoted entirely to the cosmetic aspects of dermatology. She works closely with the the premier companies in cosmetic dermatology. She contributes as advisor, international speaker, educator and researcher for world-renowned industry leaders. Personal strengths: Persistence and perfectionism. I entered medicine at a time when women were not common, persistence was essential to get into the field. Once in practice the perfectionism that drives me to get the best possible results while paying strict attention to safety and quality has served my patient’s well.


A MICHAEL ABECASSIS, MD Dean // University of Arizona College of Medicine // Dr. Abecassis began his clinical career in 1991 as assistant professor of surgery and director of liver transplantation and hepatobiliary surgery at the University of Iowa. He was recruited to Northwestern University in 1993 as director of a new liver transplant program and performed the first successful liver transplant there that same year. In 2004, he was named chief of the Division of Transplantation. He was appointed dean for clinical affairs at Feinberg in 2008, serving until 2011. He was named founding director of the Comprehensive Transplant Center in 2009. Dr. Abecassis is a member of many national and international professional societies, including the Society of University Surgeons and the American Surgical Association.


B KATHLEEN GOEPPINGER, PH.D. President and CEO // Midwestern University // Dr. Goeppinger is president and CEO of Midwestern University, Arizona’s largest health sciences University offering graduate-level degrees for the healthcare community. Established under her leadership, the Glendale Campus continues to grow and is home to colleges of osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, optometry, dental medicine, and veterinary medicine, as well as nine master’s and doctorate degrees in the College of Health Sciences. Attraction to industry: “I have had the privilege of leading the growth and development of Midwestern University for the past 25 years as President and Chief Executive Officer. The inspiration of seeing students fulfill their dreams to enter the health professions highlights the importance of higher education in the lives of many.”


C JUDITH KARSHMER Dean and professor // ASU’s Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation Dr. Karshmer’s current focus is on expanding the global footprint of the college through academic-practice partnerships. Her work has taken academic nursing to a new level of evidence-based education designed to positively impact patient safety and improve quality of care. Specializing as a psychiatric nurse, she is a progressive leader who recognizes the importance of technology in bringing education to the learner. Attraction to industry: “I always wanted to be a nurse! As I advanced in my profession, I learned that a nurse not only has an impact on patients and their families but on the entire community. That nursing is the ‘most trusted profession’ renders our voice as respected and impactful — a responsibility that I take very seriously.”

D CRAIG PHELPS, DO President and CEO // A.T. Still University of Health Sciences //


Phelps just completed his eighth year as president and CEO of A.T. Still University of Health Sciences. The University has locations in Mesa, Arizona; Missouri; and California. The University has six schools offering graduate degrees in a variety of health professions, health administration, and education. Role model: “Dr. Paul Steingard, the Phoenix Suns founding team physician, taught me to embrace bold ideas, the importance of networking, and enjoying each day to its fullest.” Attraction to industry: “Growing up in Phoenix, I pursued sports, teaching, science, and became a physician, thanks to a supporting community and family. Arizona’s a great place for people to dream, learn, begin a career, and raise a family. Every day I wake up excited to support our university family as they pursue their goals.”

E CATHERINE TODERO Dean of the College of Nursing and vice provost of Health Sciences Campuses Creighton University // In 2019, Todero was named vice provost of Health Sciences Campuses for Creighton University, overseeing health science academic programs and facilities at its new Phoenix medical school campus in midtown now under construction on Central Avenue, as well as its existing main campus in Omaha, Nebraska. Todero led the establishment of the College of Nursing’s accelerated BSN degree program in Phoenix and served as program lead in planning for the new $100 million project at Park Central Mall in midtown Phoenix. Attraction to industry: “Establishing a new branch campus for health sciences has allowed Creighton an opportunity to dream about our preferred future for educating healthcare professionals.”



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healthcare // TELEHEALTH

A KISHLAY ANAND, MD Founder and CEO // Akos MD // Dr. Anand is a board-certified cardiologist, electrophysiologist and Akos founder and CEO. He is president of Arizona Cardiovascular Institute, a state-of-the-art cardiovascular surgery center. He is also a board member at Cardiovascular Consultants, the largest integrated cardiovascular group in the Phoenix metropolitan area. Personal qualities: “Hard work is probably the driving force behind how I approach my endeavors. I’m always willing to give 100 percent to something I believe and start. In addition, perseverance and willingness to seek advice from more experienced people definitely help me push the agenda towards the goal.”


B JOEL BARTHELEMY CEO and founder // GlobalMed //


As GlobalMed founder and CEO, Barthelemy has a vision of transforming healthcare globally through telehealth and virtual care delivery. He’s been recognized as an outstanding innovator, community advocate, and a high-growth tech company leader. Under Barthelemy’s leadership, GlobalMed has provided over 25 million consults in 60 countries, from Air Force One to survivors of Hurricane Maria to the Havasupai tribe in the Grand Canyon. Attraction to industry: “Nineteen years ago, I realized healthcare needed technology solutions, possibly more than any other market segment. After all this time, I am still amazed at how difficult other countries make it for proven, state-of-the-art technologies made in the U.S. to be used to help the populations they serve.”

C JUSTIN BAYLESS President and CEO // Bayless Integrated Healthcare // D


Bayless is a native Phoenician who started accompanying his father, Dr. Michael Bayless, to Bayless Integrated Healthcare at nine years old. Bayless attended Morehouse College in Atlanta and began his career as an investment banker with Morgan Stanley. In 2008, he joined his father’s company, and in 2010, was promoted to president and CEO. Under Bayless’ leadership, Bayless Integrated Healthcare has pioneered the integration of physical and mental health and became the first accredited telehealth provider in Arizona. Attraction to industry: “Bayless Integrated Healthcare is a family business, and both of my parents were responsible for introducing me to the healthcare industry and emphasizing helping the less fortunate and vulnerable.”

D JANICE JOHNSTON, MD Co-founder and medical director // Redirect Health // Dr. Johnston oversees all clinical operations at both Redirect Health and Arrowhead Health Centers, as well as spearheading efforts to improve patient experience and operational efficiencies. Personal strengths: “I’ve always been a compassionate listener and when you really listen to your patients it allows you to understand all the aspects of getting healthcare, from accessing healthcare in the middle of the night to helping patients be able to afford medications.” Professional advice: “Medicine is a very rewarding career when your goal is to help others. Make sure to allow for good work life balance and always seek to understand your patient as a whole.”


E ALAN ROGA, MD Chief of clinical operations // Teladoc Health // Dr. Roga is a seasoned entrepreneur and emergency medicine physician with more than 20 years of experience, building and growing innovative healthcare organizations and startups. A focus on technology innovation and providing the highest quality care led Dr. Roga to launch StatDoctors, a national telehealth company for hospitals and health systems, eventually acquired by Teladoc. Dr. Roga has a proven track record of stewarding successful mergers and acquisitions, managing P&L and growing profit margins. Dr. Roga is a fellow of the American College of Emergency Medicine and a diplomat of the American Board of Emergency Medicine. Professional advice: “Taking care of people and providing healthcare is a special honor. Never lose sight of how sacred a responsibility this is.”

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A JAMES BATES Founder, president and CEO // AdviNOW Medical // Bates is the CEO and founder of AdviNow Medical. Bates has a passion to help find a solution to the healthcare crisis the world sees. His vision of automating point of care with AdviNow Medical is only the first step in reducing costs and improving outcomes, but Bates believes it will have the most immediate impact on the world’s health. Role models: “Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are both entrepreneurs that I admire. They drive forward with vision to bring revolutionary products to the market. The adversity that each of these men went through was tremendous and they powered through. I think of this as I power through challenges.” Surprising fact: “I lived in Japan for 12 years and am fluent in Japanese. Most people are surprised when they hear Japanese coming from a Caucasian face.”


B CARA CHRIST, MD Director // Arizona Department of Health Services //


Dr. Christ became Director for the Arizona Department of Health Services in May 2015 and has served the agency for more than nine years. Among her many accomplishments at ADHS, Dr. Christ collaborated with health partners and stakeholders to develop strategic plans for infectious disease prevention and control including the Governor’s Council on Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response. Professional advice: “To be an effective leader, you must be able to make daily decisions that take the positive and negative outcomes into account. To do this, you need to have all the facts and listen to the advice from your key staff. Develop your team with people who are smarter than you and bring different strengths than you have to the team.”

C ANDREW KRAFT, MD Professor of medicine // University of Arizona Department of Medicine



Dr. Kraft completed his medical and research training at the University of Pennsylvania and the National Cancer Institute. After directing a Medical Oncology Division and an NCI-designated cancer center, he was recruited to become director of the University of Arizona Cancer Center. Research focus: “My laboratory has focused on understanding the role of multiple protein kinases and their signal transduction pathways in regulating tumor growth. This focus led to the evaluation of drugs that regulate these kinases and an examination of how these laboratory findings might be translated into the clinic.”

D ANGELA OLEA, RN CEO // Assisted Living Locators // Olea is the founder of the nation’s first senior placement franchise and is a respected authority on senior housing and care options. A registered nurse, she initially launched Assisted Living Locators in response to seeing aging patients have unnecessary hospital readmissions and a lack of community support. As Assisted Living Locators CEO for the past decade, Olea has built the company into a nationwide senior placement and referral franchisor. Role model: “My Aunt, Dr. Eleanor Fountain, was my role model and mentor. She was a Fortune 100 business consultant, a professional speaker and author of ‘Success through Assertiveness.’ As I went from being a nurse, to building a national franchise, she encouraged me to break through ceilings and achieve my goals.”

E DR. JEFFREY TRENT, PH.D. President and research director // Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) Dr. Trent’s research has provided important insights into the genetic basis of cancer. He is the author of more than 300 manuscripts in the scientific literature, numerous book chapters, invited reviews and has given hundreds of invited lectures. He specializes in developing and integrating novel “omic” technologies, supporting studies of molecular changes related to cancer risk and progression. Personal strengths: “Two traits that have served me well are determination and inquisitiveness. Breakthroughs come from asking the right questions and surrounding yourself with those individuals who can help you achieve what others think is impossible.”


law // OUTLOOK



Here are the legal industry trends to look for as we depart from a turbulent 2020 By ERIN THORBURN


amed one of the Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona, serving on the board of directors for the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM), Sandra Day O’Connor Institute, and Greater Phoenix Leadership (among many other community organizations), Matt Feeney, firm chair for Snell & Wilmer, is keenly connected to the pulse of many Arizona industries. Feeney’s career spans upwards of five decades, with representative transactions in securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions, energy, and corporate governance. To help highlight what to expect in legal trends as we depart from a turbulent 2020, Feeney explores the lighter side of law trends, and what to look forward to heading into 2021— workplace flexibility, the importance of 80 ABL | Nominate at

workplace diversity, and the increased value in maintaining strong internal and client relationships.

Pandemic aftermath and positive premonitions

“Without question, issues related to COVID-19 will drive most of the expected trends in 2021,” Feeney says. “Most law firms have already begun to pivot and adapt in various ways to address the challenging economic conditions. And we can expect to see a multitude of changes—some temporary and some permanent.” Rather than upending the legal industry, Feeney predicts that the global coronavirus pandemic will likely just accelerate, and in some cases exacerbate, certain trends that the

industry has already been experiencing in recent years. The trends we can expect to see more of a focus on:

Increase in remote workplace models “We can expect many firms to be more flexible with time worked away from the office, resulting in programs and initiatives intended to support and encourage productive work-from-home environments,” Feeney says.

Reinforcement of relationships

Dependable external and internal relationships and connections have proven to be critical during periods of uncertainty, according to Feeney. “Clients want and need guidance during these challenging times. They will still need to turn to trusted sources of advice and counsel,” he says.

MATTHEW FEENEY: The Snell & Wilmer

chair’s practice is concentrated in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings, SEC reporting and compliance, and corporate governance matters, including advising corporate boards and board committees. (Photo by Mike Mertes, AZ Big Media)

law // OUTLOOK

“Without question, issues related to COVID-19 will drive most of the expected trends in 2021.” — Matthew Feeney

Maintaining and strengthening internal relationships in the legal industry will require frequent, transparent, and direct communications to all personnel.

Emphasis on technological support

Not surprisingly, the COVID-19 pandemic uncovered opportunities for technological support in firms around the globe. Being able to access software and technology tools is critically important, but to be fully productive, Feeney says that firms must be able to provide remote technical assistance and support for workers in need. “Software service models look more and more attractive given their benefits to a remote workforce and their ability to offer technical support as part of their service offering,” he says, “And videoconference technology will surely be viewed differently as it becomes less about the high-priced connectivity equipment and more about investments made to support remote workers, attract lateral candidates, and allow for suitable and meaningful client interface.”

Reconsideration of real estate

With more people working remotely, combined with a desire to decrease their footprint, Feeney expects firms will increasingly seek to reduce their square footage. “Many firms have been gradually reducing their overall square footage and have been moving to a single universal office size,” he says.

Cognizance in cutting costs

Although Feeney predicts that expense management, particularly when it comes to costs associated with real estate, will be an increasing priority, he also invites caution. “Simply reducing costs will rarely, if ever, solve the problem,” says Feeney 82 ABL | Nominate at

when asked about how the postpandemic challenges may continue to affect the legal industry. Actively practicing and involved in firm management during the 2008 Great Recession, Feeney and his colleagues were forced to endure a similarly volatile and unpredictable environment in which to operate. “While the two crises are different in many respects, they provide similar blueprints for addressing their unique challenges,” Feeney says. “First, remain committed, yet flexible, to current strategies. Focus and build on existing strengths. Next, reduce costs quickly, but to a point. When faced with uncertain demand, firms often need to lower costs in an effort to marshal resources for a long road back.” Waiting to reduce costs in the hope that the recovery comes quickly will put a firm in a difficult position if that gamble turns out to be wrong. Rather than tossing the proverbial coin, Feeney recommends instead, “mining the entrepreneurial spirit that helped build the firm in the first place. The advantages that made a product or service worth more than what the cost leaders offer still apply.” And, he adds the helpful reminder, “that most firms survived the Great Recession.”

In it for the long haul

The echo of economic uncertainty, although sure to reverberate for some time in the wake of the pandemic, will also be what shifts many industries into focusing on long-term opportunities. “This may require the owners of businesses and real estate to take fundamental actions to ‘right-size’ their balance sheet, recast loans, leases, and

other obligations to reflect new cash flow realities, and seek capital and new strategic partners to respond to the changing marketplace,” Feeney explains. “It may also afford significant opportunities for financially stronger companies and for investors to uncover new opportunities which may not otherwise have been available on favorable terms in a pre-COVID-19 environment.” In addition to being forced to adjust to factors brought on by the pandemic, Feeney says that law firms will need to be more aware and action-oriented when it comes to diverse and inclusive workforces across the corporate landscape— including the legal profession. “The protests and social upheaval in 2020 spotlighted the critical issues of bias, systemic racism, and racial injustice along with their impact on our communities of color,” Feeney says. “These priorities will greatly influence ongoing recruiting and operational strategies. At Snell & Wilmer, we are committed to having a diverse and inclusive workplace, with an understanding that diversity makes us stronger as a firm.” In closing, Feeney circles back to the value and necessity of relationshipbuilding as we make our way through the next decade. “I strongly believe that relationship-based law firms,” he says, “those that sincerely care about their clients and their issues, will continue to be successful. As such, aspiring attorneys, with the assistance of law schools, mentors, and others, should take full advantage of opportunities to understand, appreciate, and enjoy the complexities of building and enhancing relationships. This is, in essence, what it means to be a lawyer.”


A GERALD “BUZZ” ALSTON Special counsel // Jennings, Strouss & Salmon // Alston is a member of the firm’s litigation department. He has served as an arbitrator, mediator, and Maricopa County Superior Court judge pro tem (1982-2009) in all areas of civil litigation, including domestic relations, contract disputes, eminent domain and real estate. Alston is listed in Best Lawyers in America from 2005-2018. Role model: “One that stands out in my mind is Bob Johnson. Bob was the first journeyman electrician I worked with, and trained under. In addition to giving me excellent training in the electrical trade, he instilled in me the importance of working hard and being a service to your clients, and being a credit to your trade. This followed me through my apprenticeship, and through out the rest of my working life.”


B MAUREEN BEYERS Member // Beyers Farrell //


Beyers practices complex commercial litigation and arbitration. She also regularly serves throughout the United States as a neutral arbitrator and mediator in business disputes across multiple industries including franchise, financial services, healthcare and technology. Role model: “My parents. While somehow managing to nurture a large close-knit family, they each had at least two working class jobs at one time. Hard work and long hours are part of our family DNA. I have learned that there is no substitute for that.” Favorite book: “‘A Prayer For Owen Meany’ by John Irving. The book is a study of faith and doubt set in a wonderful story that is both hilarious and profoundly sad. When I need a good laugh or a good cry, it is the book I go to.”


C RICHARD FRIEDLANDER Of counsel // Lang & Klain // Friedlander is a past chair of the John C. Lincoln Health Network and was a 20-year member of its board of directors. He is a five-time Best Lawyers Phoenix “Lawyer of the Year” in Construction Litigation (2015, 2017, 2020), Arbitration (2013) and Construction Law (2011). Role model: “My law school professors instilled in me the importance of the ‘rule of law’ in our judicial system and government. Being a mediator and arbitrator, my actions have always been governed by applicable laws and court decisions, as well as fairness and equitable considerations where the law may not apply.” Surprising fact: “I love blue water sailing and its related navigation requirements. In 1993-1994, I sailed away to Mexico for seven months and even delivered boats to the Panama Canal and to San Francisco.”

D ALISA GRAY Shareholder // Tiffany & Bosco // Gray is a shareholder at the Phoenix law firm of Tiffany & Bosco, P.A., where her practice emphasizes probate and trust litigation, administration, mediation, and elder law such as guardianships and conservatorships for incapacitated persons. Gray serves as an expert witness in fiduciary matters. She is a frequent speaker at legal and professional events, including providing instruction on reducing stress in the workplace. In addition to practicing law, Gray is a yoga instructor at Desert Song Healing Arts Center. Favorite book: “‘The Bhagavad Gita.’ This ancient text holds so many lessons for these modern times. It’s about carrying out your duty or calling, with skill and discernment, and then detaching from the outcome. These lessons have helped me personally and as an attorney.”


E AMY LIEBERMAN Executive director // Insight Employment Mediation // Lieberman has successfully mediated and arbitrated over 2000 workplace conflicts, legal claims and business disputes. She has been listed in Best Lawyers of America and Southwest Super Lawyers for more than 15 years and has been ranked among the Top 100 Lawyers and Top 25 female lawyers in Arizona. Lieberman is the author of “Mediation Success: Get it Out, Get it Over, Get Back to Business,” and is a champion of ADR in the business world. Attraction to industry: “The desire for a better way — for departing employees, departure with dignity; for those in conflict, swift and reasonable resolution.” Favorite book: “‘365 Days of Kindness.’ It reminds me how even small acts of kindness impact someone’s life.”

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law // BANKING A CHRISTIAN BEAMS Managing member // Fredenberg Beams // Beams is an experienced business professional always looking to maximize the talent and abilities of his colleagues. He has been involved in management from the earliest years of his career at large law firms through the formation of his current, growing firm over five years ago. He also presently serves on the board of Republic Bank of Arizona. Role model: “My Uncle Avery Lynch (1900-1994). His self-reliant mindset was obvious to everyone he met. One day, he told me something that would shape my professional life and approach: ‘Lad, you know what I admire about you? You aren’t afraid to work hard.’ I work daily to live up to that.” Surprising fact: “I wake up at 5 a.m. every morning to spend 60-90 minutes in the weight room before work, no less than five days a week.”

B MARK BOSCO Shareholder // Tiffany & Bosco //




Over the past 20 years, Bosco has grown his practice to become one of the largest, most qualified financial services practice in the nation. His focus is to serve the banking and real estate industries by providing exemplary service and quick response to his client’s needs. Personal strengths: “The legal industry is constantly changing, and to be successful, one must be willing to adapt. Keeping current and staying out in front has enabled us to be successful for many years. We also believe our corporate culture must always operate with an attention to detail, a sense of urgency, and always respond ‘yes’ before saying ‘no.’ In addition, we are committed to always do the right thing, for every client, every time, and we approach each unique challenge with an attitude of ‘we will figure it out.’” Professional advice: “I encourage aspiring attorneys to follow their dreams, get into the best law school possible, get good grades, volunteer and serve their community. Along with preparing to be a great lawyer, be a good person, who is honest, responsive, respectful and can work as a team.” Surprising fact: “My first job at age 16 was as a carryout boy at Basha’s and I made $1.79½ per hour. In the summer, I drove a forklift at a cherry factory in Northern Michigan, working 11.5 hours a day, six days a week on the night shift.”

C COLLEEN GOODELL Shareholder // Gibson Knecht //


Knecht practices in the areas of real estate transactions, real estate finance and corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions. Her real estate work includes the representation of clients in the acquisition, development, leasing and disposition of commercial real estate. Role model: “I was lucky enough to be mentored by Gary Zwillinger, who was the kindest, smartest and funniest lawyer I’ve ever known. Gary had an uncanny ability to bring people together and find comprimise. A self-proclaimed ‘deal lawyer,’ he taught me to fight through deal fatigue in order to find resolution. Most importantly, Gary taught me to believe in myself and my skills as an attorney, which is a gift I can never repay.”

D MICHAEL RIPP Shareholder // Ryley Carlock & Applewhite // For 33 years, Ripp has represented lending institutions (including most of the major commercial banks in Arizona) and borrowers in commercial real estate and asset-based (including agricultural) financing transactions (including loan originations, workouts and enforcement) and real estate purchases and sales. This includes mixed-use projects, retail centers, office, industrial, multifamily, hospitality and assisted living projects, and leasehold and mezzanine loans and loan syndications and participations. Surprising fact: “I am also a CPA who left behind the insanely exciting world of public accounting to try my hand at law school. I like to think that I’m an unusual cross between an accountant who is pretty good with words and a lawyer who is pretty good with numbers.”


E C. BRADLEY VYNALEK Partner // Quarles & Brady //


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Vynalek serves as a counselor and advisor on strategy, exposure, and enterprise opportunity for clients ranging from local start-ups to Fortune 500 companies. Vynalek works very closely with law departments to create and manage budgets and create optimal teams for a variety of legal services in the banking, high-tech, Internet, software, manufacturing, e-commerce, health care, higher education, and tech transfer industries. Professional advice: “Research the types of industries you want to eventually represent, be it real estate, technology, health care, etc. Once you have pinpointed the industry, learn everything you can about it so you can be as an effective advocate as possible for companies in that industry down the road.”

law // BANKRUPTCY/REORGANIZATION A HILARY BARNES Member // Allen Barnes & Jones // Barnes’ practice focuses on creative financial solutions for businesses and high net worth individuals, and she represents myriad constituents in the bankruptcy arena, including debtors, creditors, committees, landlords, and franchisees/ors, among others. Role model: “Billie Jean King, who was my seatmate on a long flight many years ago. She is a most extraordinary icon, whose motto is ‘pressure is a privilege.’ I keep that in mind always. Being a lawyer is high pressure, but I am privileged to serve people in need.” Favorite book: “‘Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance,’ by Robert Pirsig. It taught me, among other things, that I can enjoy even the most mundane tasks of life when I adopt an attentive and mindful attitude.” A

B STEVEN BERGER Shareholder // Engelman Berger // Berger focuses on solving problems facing business owners, financial institutions, developers, lessors and lessees, franchisors and franchisees, and others looking to avoid future legal problems through prior planning, and those looking for spirited and effective representation in business disputes, negotiations, restructuring, and insolvency proceedings. He is a longtime Valley resident, co-founder of the firm and engaged in community activities. Professional advice: “Find an area of law that you have a passion for, learn as much as you can by reading, working hard, and finding a mentor or mentors to guide you. Treat other attorneys as you would hope to be treated. Details are crucial, but don’t lose sight of the big picture. Never lose sight of your client’s goal.” Favorite book: I have shelves full of books that remain there even after two downsizings because I have learned something from each. Picking one is impossible, but some favorites are ‘The Chosen,’ by Chaim Potok; ‘Writing Down the Bones,’ by Natalie Goldberg; and Stephen Covey’s ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People.’ “




C NEAL BOOKSPAN Equity partner // Jaburg & Wilk // Bookspan helps clients manage their legal risks. His practice involves contract-based and business related disputes including debtor/creditor issues, disputes between business owners, and employment, real estate and construction related matters. Bookspan also negotiates and drafts contracts and agreements. Role model: “My first professional role model was my first legal employer, James Marlar. Even though I only worked with him for approximately two years before he was appointed to a federal judgeship, I learned important lessons on practicing law, the business of law and how to treat people.” Favorite book: “‘The Relationship Edge,’ by Jerry Acuff. It caused me to change how I network and develop business, leading me to the most successful years of my career so far.”

D MICHAEL MCGRATH Partner and board chair // Mesch Clark & Rothschild // McGrath has been included in the Best Lawyers in America, selected as a member of Arizona’s Finest Lawyers, has been recognized as the “Best of the Best,” and awarded the America’s Most Honored Professionals Top 1% for 2016. He is recognized as one of the Top 50 Arizona Super Lawyer by Southwest Super Lawyers and as the Lawyer of the Year for Bankruptcy Litigation. He has been recognized as one of the Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona by Az Business magazine. Attraction to industry: “My great-grandmother was a lawyer and America’s first women judge. I never knew her, but her son, my grandfather, convinced me that his mother’s profession was worthwhile and was something I should always consider as I made my choices on a profession.”

E THOMAS SALERNO Partner // Stinson // Clients turn to Salerno for his national and international experience helping private and publicly-traded companies in a broad range of industries continue operations as they negotiate restructuring plans. He has advised lenders, distressed companies, committees and asset acquirers in bankruptcies and out-of-court settlements. He is also an adjunct professor and prolific author and lecturer. Role model: “My parents, both of whom were blue collar, hard workers. They showed, through example, the value of a strong work ethic.” Attraction to industry: “The unique mix of a corporate M&A practice with overlays of courtroom dynamics. In some respects, I believe restructuring attorneys are some of the last corporate generalists in an era of hyper specialization.” 88 ABL | Nominate at


























A BEN HIMMELSTEIN Partner // Radix Law // Himmelstein practices business law, focusing on business disputes and transactions, including business dissolutions, misappropriation of trade secrets, business torts, sales contracts, buy and sell agreements, and non-compete agreements. He represents businesses in a range of industries, primarily focused in technology, medical and dental. Role model: “My father taught me the value of asking questions and getting to the root of a problem. My father-in-law, Steven Bienstock, is also an important role model for me. He is a man of few words, so when he talks, whatever he is going to say is important.” Surprising fact: “During the COVID-19 pandemic, I discovered my secret coronavirus talent ... cooking. Even my picky-eater of a son has been complimenting me recently on my cooking skills.”



B MICHAEL MANNING Partner // Stinson // In addition to his regional and national litigation successes, Manning has significant international experience in connection with construction contracts, technology exchange contracts, royalty agreements, distributor agreements and sales agreements in Norway, Great Britain, France, the Philippines, Taiwan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore. Role model: “My most impactful model is a man of historical fiction, Jean Valjean, from Victor Hugo’s, ‘Les Miserables.’ I suppose only through fiction can a man be created and celebrated so perfectly possessed with such compassion, integrity, courage, generosity, strength, and selflessness. Though fictional, for me, a role model to emulate.”


C CHARLES PRICE Member // Dickinson Wright // Price is a civil litigator and mediator in the areas of intellectual property, securities fraud litigation, contract, insurance, health care, and antitrust law. He has taught negotiation at the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, and teaches negotiation to lawyers and nonlawyers across the country through the Latz Negotiation Institute. He teaches and writes about mindfulness and life balance for attorneys and other professionals. Attraction to industry: “As a young man, I was attracted by using my mind to earn a living through intellectual combat. After many years, I continue to be surprised by the space afforded by the legal profession to continue growing in the areas of mentoring, connecting with others, and emotional maturity.”

D PATRICIA REFO Partner // Snell & Wilmer // Refo is a senior commercial litigation partner at Snell & Wilmer and president of the American Bar Association, the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. She chairs Snell’s professional liability group, and concentrates her practice in legal malpractice defense work, commercial and business disputes, class action defense and internal investigations. Role model: “I have been blessed with many role models and mentors, and our firm’s late Chair John Bouma is at the top of the list. He gave me a job, and then taught me by example to always put clients first while also serving the legal profession and our community.” Attraction to industry: “I wanted to be a lawyer because the law is about helping people, and upholding the Constitution and laws of our nation.”


E JOHN SESTAK Member // Jennings, Strouss & Salmon // Sestak is an attorney with more than 35 years of experience in the areas of general business and commercial litigation and transactions. He is experienced in corporate, administrative, creditors’ rights, securities litigation, real estate, employment, professional negligence, and environmental matters, with an emphasis on litigation and disputes in these areas. He has appeared extensively before federal and state courts and administrative agencies. Role model: “My mentor as a young lawyer was Tim Barton.” Attraction to industry: “What attracted me to the industry was the law school experience and challenges posed by participating in an American institution.” Favorite book: “The best book I have read was ‘Profiles In Corruption’ by Peter Schweizer.” 90 ABL | Nominate at


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A DAVID CANTELME Co-founder // Cantelme & Brown //


Cantelme’s practice focuses on civil and commercial litigation, construction law, representation of government entities, and election law. Cantelme has been practicing law since 1981. His legal career includes extensive large-firm experience at major Phoenix firms Jennings Strouss & Salmon, PLC, and Lewis and Roca LLP before he and Aaron Brown co-founded Cantelme & Brown in 2006. For three years he also served as vice president of a residential general contractor while maintaining a small law practice to serve selected clients. Cantelme has represented clients in matters before U.S. Supreme Court, Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, U.S. District Court, Arizona Supreme Court, Arizona Court of Appeals, and Arizona Superior Court.

B KENT LANG Managing partner // Lang & Klain // Lang has a strong reputation in Arizona’s construction industry for his personal attention and practical solutions for contractors, subcontractors and suppliers in construction litigation. One of the Phoenix area’s most respected construction attorneys, Lang is an active member of multiple construction trade associations and is a Best Lawyers and Super Lawyers honoree. Lang’s recent results for his contractor clients include negotiating a settlement in excess of $1 million on behalf of a subcontractor in a dispute with the general contractor on a high-profile solar project; negotiating claims against an Arizona county on behalf of an unpaid paving subcontractor; and successfully defending a mineral appraisal firm against a $3.5 million claim alleging fraud and negligent misrepresentation.


C RICHARD MURPHY Managing partner // Murphy Cordier, PLC // Murphy, the firm’s managing partner, is focused primarily on construction, real estate and surety matters; he also has experience in a wide range of commercial litigation cases. He represents owners, developers, contractors, specialty contractors, suppliers and others involved in the development and construction industry. Murphy frequently defends licensed contractors before the Arizona Registrar of Contractors. He also serves as a private mediator and arbitrator in commercial litigation cases. Murphy represents commercial building owners in purchase and sale transactions, financing, leasing, and other business matters; and represents those involved in the development and redevelopment of commercial and retail projects such as office complexes, buildings, and retail shopping centers.

D MITCHELL RESNICK Managing partner // Resnick & Louis // Resnick is the co-founder and managing shareholder of Resnick & Louis, P.C. He is a renowned name in insurance and institutional defense litigation, representing hotels/casinos, retails stores, restaurants, as well as, insureds for specialty lines, construction defect litigation, professional liability, bodily injury, transportation, life & disability litigation, employment law, intellectual property, insurance coverage, first party property, and damage claims. Favorite book: “‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ was the impetus for me to become a lawyer. I have an autographed copy from Harper Lee that reminds me of how important it is to always treat others right and with dignity.” Surprising fact: “I would still like to be a professional ice hockey player for the New York Rangers.”


E THOMAS SHORALL, JR. Partner and shareholder // Shorall McGoldrick Brinkmann //


92 ABL | Nominate at

Shorall has an impressive track record in representing clients in commercial disputes as well as in litigation involving personal injury, premises liability, product liability, pharmacy malpractice and construction law. Shorall has extensive experience trying cases in both state and federal courts, and continues to coordinate the defense of cases filed against major national organizations. Shorall, who is also an associate of the American Board of Trial Advocates, has extensive jury trial experience, representing both plaintiffs or defendants. He has been lead counsel for clients involved in some of Arizona’s largest construction defect suits and has led the successful defense of a case which, when filed in U.S. District Court in Arizona, was the largest mold case in North America.

Representation through

EXPERIENCE, DIVERSITY & CREATIVITY Resnick & Louis has been an anchor law firm in metro Phoenix and surrounding Arizona counties for over 12 years. Over 70% of our attorneys are senior level with 20+ years’ experience, and are nationally recognized as leaders in their field. We have successfully advocated the interests of our clients and have counseled them in complex real estate transactions, fraud, commercial and business transactions, and employment contract disputes. While we aggressively pursue a positive outcome for our clients, we are also aware of our clients’ personal and financial risks resulting from litigation, and we strive to find creative resolutions in an effort to avoid any unnecessary litigation. Business Torts | Commercial Construction and Residential Disputes | Complex Real Estate Transactions | Contract and Joint Venture Disputes | Corporate Governance | Mergers and Acquisitions | Representations and Warranties





















law // ELDER LAW

A STEPHANIE BIVENS Founder // Bivens & Associates //


Bivens is a Phoenix native who received her law degree, cum laude, from Arizona State University in 1996. For more than 20 years she has focused her practice on estate planning, probate and trust administration, elder law, and special needs planning. Ms. Bivens devotes her time, knowledge, and passion to working with individuals, families, licensed fiduciaries, banks, and trust companies. Bivens holds the honored distinction as a Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA) by the National Elder Law Foundation accredited by the State Bar of Arizona. There are fewer than 500 CELAs nationwide. Ms. Bivens was selected in 2019 by Southwest Super Lawyers in Elder Law, which is a distinction awarded to fewer than 5 percent of all attorneys and selected upon professional experience and peer review.

B NORA JONES Shareholder // Tiffany & Bosco //


Jones concentrates her practice on probate and trust litigation, elder law, guardianships and conservatorships, and estate and trust administration. She blends compassion and strength to resolve matters with her clients’ best interests at heart. Nora recognizes that issues in this area of law sometimes require out-of-the-box approaches and multi-faceted solutions and employs a holistic approach to achieve client goals. Professional advice: “Put clients first. Clients know the difference between an attorney who genuinely cares and one who is just going through the motions. A client first approach results in quality work. Plus, happy clients love to tell their friends about great service and results, which leads to more happy clients.”

C CALEB LIHN Partner // Taylor & Lihn // Caleb Lihn practices in the areas of estate planning, elder law, Medicaid/ALTCS long-term care planning, probate administration and litigation, special needs planning, and guardianships and conservatorships. Role model: “My role model is my mother. She was an incredibly hard worker. Her work ethic and attention to detail were things I started observing and absorbing as a child. She passed away a few years ago, but even today, my work habits are routinely influenced by her words and examples.” Attraction to industry: “I became a lawyer to help people. That was always my motivation for entering this profession. With a practice focusing on estate planning, elder law, special needs planning, and probate the most rewarding aspect of my job remains helping people solve and/ or avoid problems.”

D CHESTER MCLAUGHLIN Owner // Law Offices of Chester B. McLaughlin // C

McLaughlin began practicing elder law after being hired by attorney Charles Arnold as an associate attorney in Phoenix in 1992. And it has been his primary area of practice ever since. Elder law concerns legal services provided for seniors, many of whom are disabled and/or incapacitated, although he helps healthy seniors with their planning needs also. McLaughlin is current a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys ( NAELA) , the Arizona Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, and the Elder Law, Mental Health and Special Needs Planning Section of the Arizona State Bar. McLaughlin gets many of his referrals from other lawyers who recognize his expertise in the field, which is probably the best indication of his abilities in his area of practice.

E EMILY TAYLOR Partner // Taylor & Lihn // Taylor counsels individuals, couples, families, and fiduciaries on legal matters related to long term care planning (Medicaid/ ALTCS planning), special needs trusts, guardianship, conservatorship, trust administration, probate, estate planning and more. After moving from a small town in Illinois, she earned her Bachelors of Science from Arizona State University in 2003. In 2007 she earned her law degree at the James E. Rogers College of Law, at The University of Arizona. Attraction to industry: “I saw the comfort and relief an elder law attorney provided to my grandparents when my grandmother could no longer take care of my grandfather in their home. I understood that the power of a profession, such as an attorney, can provide real solutions and can create a lasting impact on peoples’ lives.” 94 ABL | Nominate at

Wills & Trusts | Guardianship & Conservatorship | Special Needs Trusts | ALTCS - Long Term Care Planning | Probate & Trust Litigation | End-of-Life Planning | Probate & Trust Administration


A JOHN BALITIS Partner // Jennings, Strouss & Salmon // Balitis is a labor and employment law practitioner with over 30 years of experience representing clients in Arizona as well as in Colorado. He regularly represents parties in a broad range of administrative proceedings and litigates in both federal and state courts, where he has bench, jury trial, and appellate experience. Attraction to industry: “I wasn’t bright enough to handle pre-med, so law seemed like a good alternative at the time. The most surprising aspect of the practice is that it involves just as much collaboration and partnering with clients as it does providing legal advice.” Surprising fact: “As an infant, I nearly died from meningitis in a German hospital. I had been misdiagnosed and given my last rights. No one expected me to live.”


B JOSEPH CLEES Shareholder // Ogletree Deakins // Clees is a founding shareholder of the Phoenix office of Ogletree Deakins, one of the world’s largest employment firms. He has been honored as one of the top employment lawyers in the country and selected as “Phoenix Lawyer of the Year” for Employment Law and Labor Law. Clees has been recognized as one of the “100 Most Powerful Employment Lawyers in America” by HR Executive Magazine for many years, and as one of the “Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona.” Professional advice: “Be humble and caring and challenge the status quo. Listen very carefully to your clients, colleagues and competitors and learn from them. Recognize your limitations and compensate by surrounding yourself with the best and most diverse talent — then get out of their way.”



C MICHELLE MATHESON Employment attorney // Matheson & Matheson // Matheson has handled labor and employment matters from all sides. After working in the court system, for large defense firms, and as in-house counsel for a Fortune 500 corporation, Matheson opened her own firm with her husband in 2007. After exclusively representing employers for the first half of her legal career, she expanded her practice to include representation of individual employees. Attraction to industry: “Although I spent half my career working with large corporate clients, I am happiest in my practice today representing individuals and small to medium-sized businesses. The level of interpersonal contact appeals to my small-town Iowa roots. Plus, no corporate client ever baked me cupcakes or brought me flowers as a thank you for my services.”

D TRACY MILLER Shareholder // Ogletree Deakins // Miller is a founding shareholder of the Phoenix office of Ogletree Deakins, one of the world’s largest employment firms. She has 30 years of experience counseling and successfully representing employers in all facets of labor and employment law. She regularly defends employers in wage/ hour class and collective actions, discrimination and harassment lawsuits, and wrongful termination claims. Attraction to industry: “I was a computer major but decided before I graduated law school that I wanted to be an employment lawyer. I was attracted to the strong emotions and interesting interpersonal and legal issues we see in employment cases. I enjoy being both an advisor and a litigator, and there is rarely a dull moment. I am surprised that the employment relationship has become so legally complex.”

E LONNIE WILLIAMS, JR. Managing partner - Phoenix office // Stinson // Williams is a trial lawyer and a problem solver for business – large and small. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, one of the premier legal associations in America. Lawdragon has selected him as one of the “Top 100 Most Powerful Employment Attorneys.” Role model: “First, Johnnie Cochran, who I met in law school. Mr. Johnnie Cochran was a technically skilled trial lawyer who became a member of the American College of Trial Lawyers, when there were few lawyers of color. The other was the fictional lawyer, Perry Mason. As a kid, I loved that show.” Attraction to industry: “For reasons I cannot explain, I always wanted to be a trial lawyer. What has surprised me most is the number of people who handle cases without taking a matter to trial.” 96 ABL | Nominate at


Lonnie J. Williams, Jr.

602.212.8505 \

CONGRATULATIONS Congratulations to our Phoenix Office Managing Partner, Lonnie J. Williams, Jr., on being recognized as an AzBusiness Leader. We look forward to many more successful years ahead.




A MARK BREGMAN Member // Dyer Bregman & Ferris // Bregman is an estate planning, probate and trust administration, and related dispute resolution attorney practicing in the Phoenix area since 1979. He graduated from the Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law in 1979 and Virginia Tech in 1973. Role model: “I have had a few mentors and role models who have inculcated in me the pride and benefit of pursuing truth and fairness in a competitive and partisan profession.” Attraction to industry: “I’m a lawyer because I have no artistic talent or other marketable skill. Thinking most lawyering was adversarial, I’ve been surprised at the number of friends I’ve made and opposing counsel that I can relate to.” Surprising fact: “People would be surprised by the amount of time I devote to mentoring less experienced lawyers.”



B DARREN CASE Shareholder // Tiffany & Bosco // Case presents nationally on tax and estate planning, is the co-author of the Arizona Estate Planning and Probate Handbook, and guest contributor for Case assists clients on traditional wills and revocable trusts, along with more sophisticated estate, gift, GST, and income tax planning strategies. Favorite book: “‘Moneyball’ by Michael Lewis had the biggest impact on me, which reinforces analyzing circumstances based upon reliable data, but also being open to new scientificallyproven theories. Applying this to new emerging areas of behavioral finance, psychoanalytics, neuroeconomics, etc. with estate planning strategies, provides better estate planning services.” Surprising fact: “I am a multiple Ironman triathlon finisher.”


C WILLIAM CLARKE Chair, Estate Planning and Probate Department Jennings, Strouss & Salmon // Clarke has provided counsel to clients for more than 35 years. He advises Arizona individuals and family-owned businesses on estate planning, probate administration, business succession, corporate, and real estate transactions. Role model: “My role models are my parents, Bill and France Clarke. A WWII veteran, chemical engineer, and businessman, my father taught me, by example, that unconditional love and being truly present in one’s family is the foundation of marriage and fatherhood ... My parents enjoyed a highly successful business partnership until my father’s unexpected death in 1984. I stepped into my father’s role and partnered with my mother for 44 years until she retired at 93! Her wisdom and business acumen have impacted how I practice law and advise my clients.”

D LAUREN GARNER Partner // Jaburg | Wilk //

Garner’s practice emphasizes probate and trust litigation and mediation. Garner was certified as a mediator in Florida and is a Judge Pro Tem for Maricopa County Superior Court. She is an adjunct professor at the Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law and a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Council. Attraction to industry: “I liked the breadth of and variety in the practice of law and I appreciated the opportunities to find areas of practice that best suited my interests and strengths. I have been surprised by both the predictability and the unpredictability in so many of the cases I handle.” Surprising fact: “I marched as a clown in the 1978 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.”


E SONIA PHANSE Partner // Shein Phanse Adkins // Phanse’s practice focuses on business, tax, estate planning and commercial lending. Sonia assists clients with complex business transactions, entity formation, mergers and acquisitions, employment and operating agreements for large and small business. Role model: “My mother. She immigrated to the U.S. with barely anything, was one of the first female OB/GYNs in her area in Pennsylvania and ran her own solo medical practice for over 30 years. Her strength and work ethic have always inspired me.” Attraction to industry: “Getting to think up creative strategies to accomplish the client’s family goals or to close a deal. It’s surprising how many unique situations I continue to see after so many years.” Surprising fact: “I’m a big football fan. I can watch games all weekend during football season!” 98 ABL | Nominate at


GEN UINE PART NER To be proactive, you need partners who will help you navigate every important decision. Jennings Strouss has a deep understanding of business and law. When you work with us, you’ll have a team of legal experts who are dedicated to your vision for success.

John C. Norling, Managing Attorney, 602.262.5882 One E. Washington Street, Suite 1900 Phoenix, AZ 85004-2554


A HEATHER BOYSEL Managing member // Gammage & Burnham //



As an experienced commercial litigation attorney with an emphasis in the healthcare field, Boysel successfully obtained a $1 million judgment against a commercial insurer on behalf of a hospital in a reimbursement dispute. She routinely handles medical reimbursement disputes on behalf of providers against commercial payors, Medicare auditors, AHCCCS contractors and other governmental entities. Boysel understands the intricacies of healthcare payment methodologies, particularly among AHCCCS, Medicare DRG payments, per diem payments and healthcare provider liens. Her background in bioengineering and medical billing further fuels her fluency in representing healthcare providers with reimbursement issues through administrative hearings, mediations, arbitrations and court actions.

B STEPHEN BROWER Managing partner // Brentwood Law Group // C

Brower is the principal attorney at Brentwood Law Group, located in Tempe. Prior to founding Brentwood Brower practiced as a trial lawyer for reputable national and regional law firms. He has represented high-profile corporate and individual clients in matters that include business, real estate, healthcare, securities, creditor and bankruptcy based litigation. Initially as an associate and later confirmed as a partner, Brower recognized early in his career that clients want and deserve that unique “trial lawyer mentality” applied to all levels of their legal matters. Brower received his bachelor of science degree in economics from ASU and attended the University of California at Los Angeles, School of Law.

C MICHELLE DONOVAN Partner // Broening Oberg Woods & Wilson // Donovan joined Broening Oberg Woods & Wilson as a law clerk in 2009, became an associate in 2010 and was named a partner in 2016. Donovan grew up in northeast Ohio and later attended The Ohio State University, graduating magna cum laude with a degree in economics. Donovan moved to Arizona to attend law school at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at ASU. Donovan focuses her practice on medical malpractice defense, a sizeable proportion of which is comprised of birth trauma and gynecological malpractice defense. Coming from a medical family, Donovan understands the personal impact on healthcare providers when a lawsuit is filed criticizing their care or a situation arises that compromises a medical practice.

D BRETT JOHNSON Partner // Snell & Wilmer // Johnson is a partner with Snell & Wilmer, where he represents businesses government relations matters. He is also a Maricopa County Judge Pro Tem and Arizona Court of Military Appeals judge. Attraction to industry: “I was encouraged by mentors early on to pursue a legal career. When I started in the career, I thought it would be repetitive and boring. I was wrong. Every day is new and I have had the opportunity to take on the most challenging and novel legal issues.” Favorite book: “I was a comic book junky up to sixth grade. A small bookstore owner handed me a ‘Dragonlance’ book and told me I would never read another comic book. I laughed. He was right. This book series opened my mind to creativity and building diverse teams to accomplish hard objectives.”


E FREDERICK RISPOLI Attorney // Rispoli Law //


100 ABL | Nominate at

After law school, Rispoli worked as an associate at one of the largest law firms in the world, as ranked by The American Lawyer’s Am Law 200. His practice primarily focused on healthcare litigation. Rispoli had the opportunity to work for Fortune 500 companies, individuals and many other clients. Though gratifying, Rispoli believed that his career would be more rewarding helping those that were seriously injured by others’ wrongdoing. He transitioned to a national plaintiff’s firm, and while there had several opportunities to help many clients who were grievously hurt or lost loved ones to a defendant’s callous actions. Eventually, Rispoli decided to fulfill his desire to open his own law firm, where he could provide the highest level of legal service and personal attention.


A LISA DURAN Member // Dickinson Wright // Duran’s practice focuses on immigration. She has received Lawyer of the Year recognition for her practice area from both Best Lawyers and Global Law Experts and has been consistently listed in Southwest Super Lawyers. In addition to her active law practice, Duran maintained an adjunct faculty position for many years at ASU’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. She has also served as chair of the board of directors for Make-A-Wish Foundation of Arizona. Attraction to industry: “I was drawn to the legal profession by an idealistic goal to use my skills to help those without access to justice. I never knew that through my immigration practice, I would change people’s lives for the better every day. That is the most satisfying thing about my career.”


B KARINA ORDÓÑEZ Founder // Karina Ordóñez Law Office // Aside from immigration law, Ordóñez gained valuable experience in criminal law through her externship with the Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Joseph B. Heilman, where she provided extensive legal research and writing for a second-degree​murder case and various civil matters. Since practicing, Ordóñez has represented clients in both state and federal courts, including the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Ordóñez also participated in the Arizona State University, PostRelief Conviction Clinic and the Arizona Justice Project where she worked on various DNA cases to exonerate wrongfully convicted defendants. Prior to her legal career,​Ordóñez was the assistant director for strategic policy for the Arizona Department of Homeland Security.



C SANDRA SHERIDAN REGUERIN Partner // Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy // Sheridan Reguerin has practiced business immigration law exclusively since 1996. Prior to joining Fragomen in 2008, she was a shareholder at Littler Mendelson and an associate at Bacon & Dear and a physician boutique practice in Northern Virginia. She has extensive experience with L-1 and consular matters, J-1 program administration and waivers, H-1B and O-1 visas and permanent residency. She serves as vice chair of the American Immigration Lawyers Association State Department Liaison Committee. Attraction to industry: “The international aspects of the practice and the ability to perform corporate work, while simultaneously helping individuals achieve their dreams, attracted me to the practice. I never cease to be amazed by or to appreciate how much I continue to learn every single day.”

D BENJAMIN WIESINGER Senior associate attorney // Pope & Associates // Wiesinger began working at Pope & Associates in February of 2008, where he is now the senior associate attorney. Wiesinger has appeared in every Immigration Court in Arizona where he has litigated a wide variety of cases, from simple bonds to complex asylum and cancellation of removal cases. Wiesinger is also the primary brief writer and appellate litigator for Pope & Associates. He has worked on hundreds of appeals and motions to reopen to the Board of Immigration Appeals. Wiesinger is highly regarded in the community as one of the best Federal litigators in Phoenix. He has written more than 100 briefs to the Ninth Circuit, conducted eight oral arguments before the Court, and has worked on four successful petitions for citizenship in the U.S. District Court of Arizona.

E REBECCA WINTERSCHEIDT Partner // Snell & Wilmer //


Winterscheidt has been practicing law at Snell & Wilmer since 1983. She splits her practice between employment defense work and business immigration. She represents companies at all stages of employment disputes, from the administrative charge through trial if necessary. In the immigration area, she assists companies with obtaining work visas and ultimately green cards for their foreign national employees. Winterscheidt also serves as a private mediator and arbitrator of employment disputes. Professional advice: “Be the master of your own destiny. If you are unhappy, figure out a way to make a change. Recognize the need for balance in your life between your work, your personal mental and physical health, your family, and giving back to the community.” Nominate at | ABL 101


A LYNN ALLEN Managing partner // Tyson & Mendes //



Allen is an experienced trial lawyer who represents her clients in a wide variety of complex cases, including insurance coverage disputes, insurance bad faith, defense of personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits, intellectual property, employment law, and appeals. Allen has extensive appellate experience in both the Arizona state and federal courts. She has been lead counsel in many successful jury trials, arbitrations, summary judgment motions, and appeals. She is a frequent lecturer on insurance bad faith and coverage issues in Arizona. Allen successfully defended an insurance company in a jury trial involving a $1.7 million claim of first party breach of contract and insurance bad faith arising from storm damage to a plaintiff’s home.

B S. DAVID CHILDERS Partner // Kutak Rock // A frequent lecturer, Childers has been retained as an expert witness on insurance matters on approximately 225 occasions and regularly serves as counsel to clients nationwide on complex insurance regulatory matters. Prior to entering private practice, Childers served as director of the Arizona Department of Insurance, where he was actively involved in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), serving on its executive committee and chairing the Workers’ Compensation Task Force, the Accident & Health Committee and the Western Zone of the NAIC. Before his appointment as director of insurance, Childers served as lead corporate counsel, and subsequently as manager of the risk management department, at Salt River Project.

C E. J. KOTALIK, JR. Vice president // Peshkin & Kotalik // Kotalik has been practicing law in Arizona since 1984. His practice concentrates on commercial litigation, insurance coverage, bad faith law, products liability, accident and personal injury and professional liability. Kotalik is a member of the State Bar of Arizona, Maricopa County Bar Association, American Bar Association and the Arizona Association of Defense Counsel (former chairperson, Insurance Litigation Committee). Kotalik earned his Juris Doctor degree in 1984 from the Hastings College of Law, University of California, where he was an editor of the Hastings Law Journal. As an undergraduate, Mr. Kotalik earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics in 1980, cum laude, from Claremont McKenna College.


D KEVIN O’MALLEY Shareholder and board member // Gallagher & Kennedy //


O’Malley is a shareholder, a member of the G&K board, and head of the litigation as well as public bidding and procurement departments. He is keenly attuned to his clients’ needs, developing strategy, and implementing solutions that are focused on their goals. Role model: “Although only a few years older, Mike Kennedy has mentored me throughout my career. Although the training on litigation skills was invaluable, much more important for me and others was the sense of professionalism he instilled as a role model for the firm.” Surprising fact: “I believe most people would be surprised to know that for my 60th birthday I asked for, received, and celebrated in first row seats at the Lady Gaga concert.”

E AMY SAMBERG Shareholder // Foran Glennon Palandech Ponzi & Rudloff //


102 ABL | Nominate at

Samberg concentrates her practice on advising insurers in coverage matters involving both first party and liability coverages, including property, inland marine, CGL, construction defect, professional liability, directors’ and officers’ liability, excess/surplus, automobile/trucking liability and insurance fraud. Samberg has also extensively litigated and tried bad faith and coverage suits in courts throughout the Southwest. Samberg has a Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent peer rating, indicating the highest ranking in legal ability and ethical standards as determined by her peers in the legal community. She has been selected by her peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Insurance Law (2009-2020).


A GARLAND BROWN Co-founder // Weiss Brown // Brown is the co-founder of Weiss Brown, a business and technology law firm. He is a technology lawyer and helps companies from startups to publicly trade corporations with matters ranging from Internet law, intellectual property, licensing, and general counsel services. The American Bar Association selected him as one of America’s Techiest Lawyers. Brown is also an intellectual property mediator, trained at the Harvard Law School Program of Instruction for Lawyers. Personal strengths: “I like the discipline and focus it takes to be a runner. As a lawyer, you need to focus. I like to solve problems and I like my firm to solve problems. When people come to us, we really listen to what their ultimate goals are. We do things that a lot of other people could do, but are afraid to.”



B FLAVIA CAMPBELL Member // Dickinson Wright // Campbell focuses her practice primarily in the areas of trademarks and copyrights. She assists clients with the selection, clearance and prosecution of trademarks in the United States and abroad. Attraction to industry: “Growing up, I was enamored with the idea of being in advertising, creating ad campaigns and new brand names and developing creative content. My father, a lawyer, convinced me to go into Law. I found in intellectual property law a perfect bridge between the two careers. It allowed me to work closely with clients’ creative teams, helping them select strong trademarks and protect them. Every time I see a brand or slogan that we cleared and registered, I can’t help but feeling like a proud godmother.”


C GEORGE CHEN Partner // Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner // Chen is the leader of the Intellectual Property Practice in the Phoenix office, and he partners with long-term clients to develop, protect, litigate, and license patents, copyrights, trademarks, and trade secrets. Attraction to industry: “Nearly 25 years ago, I left a career as an electrical engineer to begin a career in the legal field so that I could use my technical background to help businesses solve their legal problems. After practicing patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secret law for a few decades, I am surprised at how quickly technology has significantly changed the law, including a much faster pace of practicing law, to a more complex way of fighting lawsuits, to more flexible options for achieving work-life balance.”

D SEAN GARRISON Partner // Bacal & Garrison Law Group // A graduate of Columbia Law School (‘92) and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (‘89), Garrison has been counseling and representing clients in connection with trademark, copyright, and software related matters for nearly 30 years. Role model: “My law partner, Glenn Bacal, whom I started working with on my very first day as a lawyer, has taught me so much about the practice and excelling at client relationships. And my mom, who has always encouraged me and who puts everyone else ahead of herself.” Surprising fact: “My first job (not counting the obligatory paper route) in high school was working with a group of Navy engineers climbing around F-14 jets at the Naval Air Rework Facility in Norfolk, Va. Not a bad gig for a high school kid.”


E BRADLEY HARTMAN Founder // Hartman Titus // Hartman is an intellectual property and corporate lawyer with experience litigating intellectual property cases and business disputes in state and federal courts. Hartman has offices in Phoenix and Washington, D.C. Hartman helps clients of all shapes and sizes – holding a broad spectrum of products and technologies – protect, license, transfer, and enforce their trademarks, patents, copyright-protected materials, Internet domain names and trade secrets. Hartman clears, registers, and enforces trademarks in the United States and internationally, including litigation in federal courts and in opposition and cancellation proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.


Nominate at | ABL 103

law // LAND USE

A ED BULL Shareholder // Burch & Cracchiolo // For more than 40 years, Bull’s practice has focused on zoning and land use. He is certified as a Real Estate Specialist by the Arizona Board of Legal Specialization. A peer review rated AV 5.0 Preeminent attorney, Bull has been recognized by Chambers USA, Best Lawyers in America , Super Lawyers of the Southwest , Arizona’s Finest Lawyers, AZRE’s People to Know, Who’s Who in Arizona Law, and others. Professional advice: “When a task or matter is assigned to you, own it. And when you delegate a task or matter, make sure that both your assignee and you know that they own it.” Surprising fact: “If I wasn’t a lawyer, I’d be swinging a hammer or ranching.”




B DOUGLAS JORDEN Managing partner // Jorden Hiser & Joy // Jorden began his legal career in 1976, after graduating from the University of Arkansas. From 19781982, he was town attorney for the Town of Paradise Valley. Since 1982, Jorden has been in private practice focusing on land use, real estate, municipal law, and environmental and Indian law. Attraction to industry: “I’ve always considered myself a logical thinker and a good writer, so it seemed that a law career was the best way to use those skills. After 44 years, I am pleasantly surprised that my initial perception was correct.” Favorite book: “‘Into Thin Air,’ by Jon Krakauer, is the account of a murderous storm on Mt. Everest that left many dead. The story of those who survived teaches how a positive attitude can help overcome adversity.”

C JASON MORRIS Founding partner // Withey Morris // Morris’ practice is exclusively in land use including national homebuilders, master plan developers, commercial-industrial landowners and Fortune 100 companies. Morris maintains an AV rating and has repeatedly been included on the Super Lawyers and Best Lawyers lists. He is currently listed as one of the Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona for 2020. Role model: “On a personal level, my parents – who both passed when I was relatively young – instilled tremendous values and made me appreciate each healthy day. On a professional basis, I’ve been blessed with a business partner for 20 years in Mike Withey who is a mentor, friend and brilliant advocate.” Surprising fact: “My family is British and I spent a large part of my childhood in England.”

D JAMES PATTERSON Member // Dickinson Wright // Patterson has been certified as a specialist in real estate law by the State Bar of Arizona since 1986. His practice concentrates on matters relating to all aspects of real estate and financing and municipal economic incentive agreements. He is recognized as a leader in his field by Chambers USA and Best Lawyers in America. Attraction to industry: “The historical antecedents of English common law (like the saw-toothed indentations on contracts written on sheepskin, giving rise to the term ‘indenture’) always interested me, and I am still fascinated how those old practices and rules continue to influence contemporary real property law.” Surprising fact: “My wife and I run a half-marathon in Vancouver every summer.”


E DARIN SENDER President and founder // Sender Associates //


104 ABL | Nominate at

Sender is an AV-rated zoning attorney and president and founder of Sender Associates, a law firm specializing in zoning entitlements based in Tempe. For more than 20 years, she has helped clients obtain zoning entitlements for mixed-use, residential, commercial, and industrial projects. Role model: “My true role models are my Mom and Dad, and my grandmothers. My dad is a developer and my mom was an interior designer. My grandmothers were strong, independent women who helped raise us, one involved in real estate while the other worked hard at a local hospital. My mom and dad and grandmothers taught us to work hard, set goals, and realize the results of your hard work. I also learned from them that I could do anything I set my mind to.”



A G. JAMES GOODNOW, III CEO and managing partner // Fennemore Craig // The Harvard Law graduate took the reins of the firm at age 36, which made him the youngest known lawyer elevated to the top position of a large law firm in U.S. history. Role model: “I started at Fennemore Craig as a file clerk when I was 18. The firm’s then managing partner, Tim Berg, took the time to get to know me without regard to title or position. He set a great example that I strive to follow.” Surprising fact: “I’m going back to the classroom. My wife and I both applied and were admitted to Cambridge Business School in the U.K., where we’ll pursue a master of entrepreneurship. We’ll continue working, but will travel back-and-forth across the pond for the next two years — bringing the kiddos whenever we can.”


B PATRICK MACQUEEN Founding partner // MacQueen & Gottlieb // MacQueen’s 15-year legal career has been primarily in real estate transactional law and litigation. He prevailed in litigation before the Arizona Court of Appeals and served as local counsel in the $129 million acquisition of the City North development. He was selected to the Southwest Super Lawyers Rising Stars list for seven consecutive years and was among AZ Business magazine’s 2019 and 2020 Top 100 Attorneys in Arizona. Role model: “My dad. Although he was in the education field and not in a traditional business, he always encouraged me to encourage others, to play my own game, and to stay focused.” Favorite book: “‘Think and Grow Rich.’ I read it every year. I do not read it to become richer. I read it to help me think about growing in other aspects of my life.”



C NICOLE MAROULAKOS GOODWIN Phoenix managing shareholder // Greenberg Traurig // Athena finalist, 40 under 40 honoree, and named one of The Most Influential Women in Arizona Business by Az Business magazine, Goodwin is a business litigator. She has represented public and private corporate clients in state and federal trial and appeals courts, as well as before administrative tribunals and arbitration venues. Attraction to industry: “The practice of law appealed to me early on because of the ability to utilize analytical, writing and persuasive abilities to influence change and help clients solve problems. What has been the most surprising is the impact of technology on the practice. We are much more efficient now than we were when I started practicing, and I expect artificial intelligence and other guided tools will change the industry even more.”

D CHRISTOPHER MEISTER Office managing shareholder // Ogletree Deakins // Meister graduated magna cum laude, with accounting and business management degrees from North Carolina State University and in the top quarter of his class at Wake Forest School of Law. Meister joined Ogletree Deakins in 2006 and regularly partners with clients to help manage employee and union relations. He also has extensive experience litigating trade secret, employment, and labor matters in arbitrations, in state and federal courts, and before state and federal administrative agencies including the National Labor Relations Board, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and Department of Labor. Prior to joining the firm, Meister clerked for the Honorable Stephen McNamee of the United States District Court for the District of Arizona.

E PEDRO MIRANDA Office managing partner // Squire Patton Boggs // Miranda focuses his practice on public finance. He has served as bond counsel and underwriter’s counsel on financings by government bodies in Arizona, Florida, Texas and Puerto Rico. He has broad experience representing issuers and underwriters on both new and money financings and refundings. His experience includes financing secured by project ventures, special sales taxes, general obligation bonds and special assessment bonds. Professional advice: “It is never too early to start cultivating relationships and embrace the networking opportunities that are available through business, community and industry organizations. It is a great way to develop both professionally and personally.” 106 ABL | Nominate at



A MATTHEW FEENEY Chair // Snell & Wilmer //



Feeney’s practice is concentrated in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings, SEC reporting and compliance, and corporate governance matters, including advising corporate boards and board committees. Role model: “My parents, who taught me the value of education, hard work, and faith. And my wife, Michele, who has made me a better person and father.” Favorite book: “‘Siddhartha,’ by Hermann Hesse. I first read this in high school and have read it many times since. The main character seeks meaning in a variety of ways and comes to an understanding of his own life’s meaning. The book is a reminder to me that life brings a variety of experiences, both good and bad, but those experiences, taken and understood together, lead me to an optimistic view of people and the world.”

B MARK NADEAU Co-managing partner, Phoenix office // DLA Piper //


Nadeau is an advocate involved in complex commercial cases throughout the United States and has represented clients in many high-profile disputes. Amongst his cases are significant industry focused work involving television, aviation, real estate hospitality, energy, trade secret and unfair business practice matters. His work in the energy sector has involved disputes concerning off-shore platform construction and insurance issues, nuclear plant and rod exchange programs, pipeline line siting and failures, drilling and extraction issues, as well as take or pay litigation. He successfully defeated a natural gas “cost of service gas” program involving long-term hedging of gas before five state public utilities commissions.

C SHAWN OLLER Office managing shareholder // Littler // Oller practices in federal and state courts in Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. He is a trial lawyer who represents management and companies in all aspects of employment litigation, arbitration, and mediation. Attraction to industry: “I have always liked the problem-solving aspect of the law. Being trusted by clients and being able to help them achieve their goals is highly rewarding. One of the things that has surprised me is that there are always new problems to solve and that the solutions change as well.” Favorite book: “One of my favorite books (and I have several at any one time) is ‘All the King’s Men’ by Robert Penn Warren and one of its themes that resonates with me is the effect of time, especially how it affects memory and perception.”

D CYNTHIA RICKETTS Founding partner // Sacks, Ricketts & Case // Ricketts concentrates her practice on complex contract and consumer-related commercial litigation and class action defense. In her 30 years of practice, Ricketts has handled over 200 diverse complex contract and consumer-related matters. Role model: “Sandra Day O’Connor impacted my decision to attend law school and, thus, my career. Justice O’Connor was confirmed as Supreme Court Justice in 1981—my high school senior year. That a woman with Arizona connections could be Supreme Court justice inspired and gave me confidence for a successful legal career.” Surprising fact: “I am an avid sports fan and have been to 11 World Series, including when the Diamondbacks beat the Yankees in Game 7 in 2001, and three Super Bowls.”


E LEON SILVER Managing partner // Gordon & Rees //


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An accomplished trial lawyer, Silver leads the firm’s national Retail & Hospitality and Governmental Regulatory & Administrative Law practice groups. Role model: “Mark Harrison has mentored me going back as long as to the first time I changed firms. He and Larry Hammond have instilled in me the importance of giving back to the community. Gloria Feldt has provided a model for giving back by being deeply involved and creating those opportunities.” Attraction to industry: “Prior to law school, I was a high school teacher and coach. In that position I had the chance to influence young lives individually. As a lawyer, I have a unique opportunity to help many more people directly and indirectly, and have access to a platform to effect great change.”


A PATRICIA BRIONES Partner // Petti and Briones // Briones’ practice focuses on representing clients with civil regulatory and white collar criminal defense matters as well as assisting Tribal clients with business economic development ventures and providing general counsel services to Tribal governments. Attraction to industry: “Before law school, I worked for 20 years in the financial sector. I am thankful to be able to reflect on these experiences when I provide assistance and guidance to my clients as they navigate their own challenges in a constantly changing business climate.” Favorite book: “‘The Alchemist’ by Paulo Coelho. ‘The Alchemist’ is full of messages but for me and my practice. I especially find it inspiring that when you work diligently at a cause the surrounding environment also benefits.”


B JUDITH DWORKIN Managing partner // Sacks Tierney // Dworkin offers broad experience in Indian law, with a major emphasis on assisting Indian tribes in achieving their economic development objectives. In addition to her Indian law practice, she has spent a great deal of her career focused on water rights and has taught water law and natural resources law at the Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. Prized possession: “A baby grand piano. My mom slept in the living room, shared with the piano. For me, it represents the sacrifice of a parent, foregoing basic necessities to provide an exceptional opportunity to a child and the cooperation of a child to forego simple childhood daily pleasures to satisfy a parent’s dream for the child.”



C HEIDI MCNEIL STAUDENMAIER Partner // Snell & Wilmer // McNeil Staudenmaier is nationally recognized in the areas of Native American law, gaming law and business litigation. She represents tribes, tribal entities and businesses who engage in commercial transactions in Indian country, including gaming licensing, compacting and economic development governmental matters. Attraction to industry: “After being a sportswriter following college graduation, I decided I wanted to become a sports agent, so that’s why I went back to law school. What has surprised me the most is the fact that my entire career in Native American law is thanks to taking a Federal Indian Law class during law school. Little did I know that the class would form the base for my very rewarding and fulfilling 35-year-long career in the field. And that I still very much love the practice of law.”

D FRANCES SJOBERG Partner // Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie // Sjoberg (pronounced Shoberg) represents Tribal governments and businesses. Her work includes outside general counsel, legislative services, gaming compacts, jurisdictional conflicts, intergovernmental negotiations, enterprise development, leasing, rights-of-way, fee-to-trust and other land matters. Sjoberg thrives in crisis management and assisting clients to resolve or find workarounds for seemingly intractable problems. Favorite book: “‘Team of Rivals’ by Doris Kearns Goodwin. This political biography of Abraham Lincoln shows how our skills are sharpened by worthy opponents, and that we can accomplish what seems impossible if we harness the most dedicated, intelligent and hardworking people in the room.”

E MARIAN ZAPATA-ROSSA Partner // Snell & Wilmer // Zapata-Rossa’s practice at Snell & Wilmer focuses on labor and employment law. She defends employers against wage and hour, prevailing wage, discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims, and represents employers in disputes involving employment and arbitration agreements and restrictive covenants not to compete. Attraction to industry: “I was drawn to the legal profession because of my passion for social justice issues. Practicing at a business law firm over the course of my career has opened so many doors for me and provided me with a platform to advance opportunities for women and diverse attorneys in the legal profession. Being a lawyer has been a privilege and a most rewarding profession.”


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A STEVEN LAWRENCE Shareholder // Milligan Lawless, P.C. // Lawrence focuses his practice of the business needs of private and public companies, including mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, intellectual property transactions and healthcare matters. Attraction to industry: “As I was growing up, we had a family friend who was a judge and it was his ability to make an impact on the community that focused my desire on wanting to become a lawyer. The thing that consistently surprises me the most in the legal industry is the lack of civility among some lawyers.” Favorite book: “The Bible is the book that has impacted me the most and deepened my faith and world view. ‘Crime and Punishment’ is a secular book that impacted me the most as a reader.”



B STEVEN PIDGEON Co-managing partner, Phoenix office // DLA Piper // Pidgeon is a corporate lawyer recognized for excellence by premier legal publications, including Chambers & Partners, Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers. He also serves on various community boards. Role model: “Jock Patton, the leader of the corporate group at my first law firm, was a businessman at heart. He taught me to focus on the economics of a deal first.” Attraction to industry: “I enjoy the law because at its essence it’s about solving problems. The biggest changes over my career involve technology and globalization — the practice is much faster and more international than when I started.” Favorite book: “One of my favorite books is ‘Pillars of the Earth.’ I enjoy historical fictions and it provided great insight into life in the 12th Century.”


C SCOTT WEISS Attorney // Weiss Brown // Weiss is a corporate and securities attorney and focuses his practice in the areas of securities, private placements, venture capital, and mergers and acquisitions. Weiss is also a certified public accountant. Prior to forming his own law firm, Weiss was a shareholder at an international law firm and served in the audit practice of Arthur Andersen. Role model: “My greatest role model and mentor for becoming a successful lawyer was Bob Kant of Greenberg Traurig. Watching Bob work as a lawyer on a deal together (while I was a CPA) motivated me to attend law school and become a securities lawyer. Bob taught me how to advocate for clients, manage a successful practice, solve complex problems, and all the while remaining an excellent practitioner and staying involved with the client work.”

D SUSAN WISSINK Director // Fennemore Craig // Wissink is a director at Fennemore Craig and is equally passionate about helping her clients and in volunteering in the community for organizations that support children and animals. As a member of the firm’s management committee, Wissink’s leadership and vision help set the tone and direction of the firm. As a business attorney, she assists her clients in forming new companies, strategic partnerships, commercial loans, general corporate matters and commercial healthcare matters. Role model: “My role model is Justice Sandra Day O’Connor because she blazed a path for women in law and was a fair and neutral justice on the Supreme Court. My mentors are John Everroad and Karen McConnell, two attorneys who truly taught me how to be an effective and ethical lawyer.”


E CATHLEEN YU Partner // Quarles & Brady // Yu is the Phoenix Business Law Practice Group chair and practices in the areas of business law and tax-exempt organizations. Her practice also includes the representation of clients in mergers and acquisitions, securities and other business transactions in industries including health care, restaurant, education, financial services, manufacturing and biotechnology. Professional advice: “In addition to being responsive and anticipating client needs, be proactive in seeking and seizing opportunities. You never know where something will lead. Be open to tackling new challenges and being willing to ‘figure it out’ will distinguish you. Finally, everyone experiences self-doubt- get over it and carry on.” 110 ABL | Nominate at


When starting a business or looking to grow one, you need nimble and bright legal counsel who can help get you where you need to go, without the burden and costs of a big law firm. We are pragmatic lawyers who bring our respective business, accounting, employment, software development, and technology backgrounds together to work for your business.


W E I S S B R OW N . C O M




Partner // Ely, Bettini, Ulman Rosenblatt & Ozer // Funkhouser is a relentless advocate who puts the interests of her clients first in all aspects of litigation. Representing injured plaintiffs for over 16 years, her experience is guided by compassion, empathy, and respect for the individuals she represents. Funkhouser prides herself in working handin-hand with her clients, through the many challenges of litigation, to ensure each client gets the just result they deserve. Role model: “Each of my partners have inspired me and taught me to be the lawyer I am today. I have learned the value of digging for details, pushing for facts and never giving up.” Attraction to industry: “As a law student, I clerked at a personal injury firm. The firm represented victims of horrific negligence who had suffered life changing injuries. I was inspired by the resilience of the human spirit, and decided I wanted to spend my career helping people when they needed it most.” Favorite book: “‘A Time to Kill’ by John Grisham showed me that great lawyers can find a way to get the jury to walk in their client’s shoes and feel what it was like to go through what their client has gone through. Justice requires empathy.”

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A ELIZABETH FITCH Founding member and managing partner // Righi Fitch Law Group // Fitch is a trial lawyer with 33 years of civil defense experience and has the AV Preeminent rating. She has defended numerous multi-million-dollar cases ranging from catastrophic injuries to construction defect cases. She has defended all types of professionals from lawyers to architects. In 2017, Fitch was selected as a Business Insurance Women to Watch Honoree, and in 2019, she was recognized as a Super Lawyer, which makes that her eighth year in a row. Favorite book: “‘Blue Ocean Strategy’ is the best book I have read. When we founded the Righi Fitch Law Firm 10 years ago, this book served as a model for our innovative and entrepreneurial approach to the practice of law.” Surprising fact: “I am a cowgirl through and through.”


B MARC LAMBER Director // Fennemore Craig // Lamber formed the Plaintiff Personal Injury Practice at Fennemore Craig and it remains the only PI group within a major U.S. national law firm. With offices in Nevada and Colorado, he has spent the last 27 years developing and honing it, representing a multitude of accident victims and their families resulting in hundreds of successful outcomes. Personal strengths: “I’m neurotic. I worry about every detail, every hour of the day. I believe that although this personality trait does not contribute to a long life line, it allows for a better work product and a higher level of concern for my clients.” Industry outlook: “Technology and innovation continue to surge in the world, our communities and our lives and, I think, more and more in the profession. It redefines what we do, and how we do it.”


C BRADLEY SHWER Founding partner // Thorpe Shwer // Shwer represents Fortune 500 companies, local businesses, individual entrepreneurs, and government entities in high-stakes cases across the United States. His practice areas include business/commercial litigation, personal injury defense, franchise litigation, products liability, and employment litigation. Role model: “My dad showed me that commitment to excellence as a father, husband, professional, and good citizen are interrelated, not mutually exclusive. That has consistently guided me as I balance the different aspects of my life and career.” Surprising fact: “I’m originally South African and have had the privilege of traveling through a lot of Africa, including an incredible trip to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro — one of the most beautiful places on the planet.”

D K. THOMAS SLACK Partner // Beale Micheaels Slack & Shughart // Slack represents plaintiffs in catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases with an emphasis on railroad grade crossing collision, trucking and construction accidents. He has tried numerous catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases, including automobile, motorcycle and trucking accidents, railroad grade crossing collisions, and construction and premises liability injuries. Slack has obtained significant seven and eight figure jury verdicts and settlements for his clients. He also serves as a mediator and arbitrator in personal injury and wrongful death cases. Slack is a State Bar of Arizona certified specialist in injury and wrongful death litigation; a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, and is listed in Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers.

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Congratulations to our partner, Brad Shwer Recognized as one of Arizona’s Top Lawyers by Az Business Leaders magazine

• • • • • • •

Business & Commercial Litigation Tort Defense Employment Litigation Franchising Litigation Transportation Law Appellate Litigation Product Liability Defense



A ANDREW ABRAHAM President and shareholder // Burch & Cracchiolo // Abraham serves as president of the firm and is certified as a Real Estate Specialist by the Arizona Board of Legal Specialization. He is listed in Best Lawyers in America for Real Estate Transactions and in Southwest Super Lawyers in the 2011 and 2014-2020. Az Business magazine has named him among the Top 100 Lawyers in Arizona. Role model: “Dan Cracchiolo. He taught me that to succeed in this profession you have to work harder than any other lawyer involved and ‘break bread’ with your clients.” Attraction to industry: “The goal of helping both paying clients and volunteering legal services to those in need.” Favorite book: “‘The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn’ opened my mind to imagination.”


B THOMAS ARENDT Member // Jennings, Strouss & Salmon // Arendt is experienced in acquisition and development, leasing, and real estate workouts and foreclosures. His representation includes various ground-up developments, retail centers, and banks and lenders in deed of trust and mezzanine projects. Arendt is a Certified Real Estate Specialist with the Arizona State Bar Board of Legal Specialization. He has been listed in Southwest Super Lawyers in the area of Real Estate Law for over ten years, and in Best Lawyers in America in the area of Real Estate since 2002. Arendt is currently a member of the State Bar’s Real Estate Advisory Commission. Attraction to industry: “Practicing real estate law permits daily interaction with people who have the skill to build something complicated. You then get to see it.”



C DOROTHY BARAN Co-founder and shareholder // May, Potenza, Baran & Gillespie Baran is chair of the board at her firm and practices law with a focus on business. For more than three decades, she has served as a trusted advisor to C-suite executives and boards of closely held and nonprofit companies. She has been recognized by Southwest Super Lawyers for real estate in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Attraction to industry: “I watched TV shows and movies featuring legal eagles when I was young. I thought trials were great, especially when a critical piece of evidence blew one side’s theory apart. I always knew a good brain was essential, but the stamina required for this career is intense.” Surprising fact: “I ran away from a caregiver when I was 4 years old. She had locked me in her cellar. I got out through a window and spent the day in the local park. It was delightful.”


D JENNIFER CRANSTON Shareholder // Gallagher & Kennedy // Cranston is a home-grown Gallagher & Kennedy shareholder and the newest member of the firm’s Board of Directors. Since joining G&K in 2000, she has developed a unique practice focused on condemnation, insurance, and public utility law. Thanks to her professional diversity, Cranston has experience working with and representing a variety of clients across several industries, which experience gives her a balanced perspective that compliments her practical, cost-effective approach to problem solving and meeting client needs. Favorite book: “‘The Fountainhead,’ by Ayn Rand. I’ve read it multiple times — every time I’ve come to a crossroads in my life — and each time it’s empowered me to make the decision that’s right for me (regardless of what anyone else thinks).”

E PAUL WEISER Managing shareholder of Scottsdale office // Buchalter // Weiser’s practice encompasses all aspects of commercial landlord/tenant law, from document preparation, negotiation and interpretation to dealing with such issues as defaulting and bankrupt tenants, brokerage disputes, construction related matters and the day-to-day issues facing office, retail, industrial and medical owners and property managers. Role model: “I’ve tried to learn something from every attorney, property owner, property manager and leasing agent that I’ve worked with during my career as they each brought different experiences and knowledge to the table. Using the positives and avoiding the negatives has helped make me a better, more efficient and smarter lawyer.” Surprising fact: “I was born in a US Army hospital on a base in Germany.” 116 ABL | Nominate at



A BENJAMIN GOTTLIEB Co-founder // MacQueen & Gottlieb // Gottlieb is a seasoned trial attorney who has successfully handled hundreds of real estate and business cases. Gottlieb’s legal career has been highlighted by numerous victories and successful settlements for his clients, in both superior court and at the court of appeals. Attraction to industry: “Real estate is all around us. It is tangible. It is not going away. Initially, I assumed being a real estate lawyer is a secure, but boring job. But the job has turned out to be incredibly fun.” Favorite book: “‘The Power of Now,’ by Eckhart Tolle. Lawyers are trained to be analytical, but our best work is done when we immerse ourselves in the present moment. This book taught me to — whenever possible — dissolve the past and resist the temptation to overly concern myself with the future.”


B JAY KRAMER Director // Fennemore Craig // Kramer’s leadership role in his firm’s commercial transactions section has helped to shape the region’s massive growth by counseling numerous commercial and industrial developers, national and local homebuilders, planned community developers, as well as financial institutions. Professional advice: “Your reputation and integrity are your most important assets. It takes years to develop a reputation and only one misstep to destroy it. No client or matter is so important that you ever compromise your integrity.” Personal strengths: “Work ethic and problem solver. In the legal industry clients want lawyers that solve problems rather than just issue spot. If you work harder than others and exceed client expectations, you will always be sought after by clients and potential clients.”




Chair of the Real Estate and Commercial Sections // Gust Rosenfeld // Rodriguez-Pashkowski brings to her clients years of experience in handling matters such as state and federal environmental due diligence, WQARF, CERCLA, UST, RCRA, and air and water quality permitting and compliance. Rodriguez-Pashkowski works with various federal, state, and local governmental entities and private companies on a broad range of environmental issues. Attraction to industry: “Reruns of ‘Perry Mason,’ my father telling me that I should become a lawyer because I liked to argue, and believing it would be an exciting career. How the ever-evolving technology impacts our daily practice surprises me the most.” Surprising fact: “I quit my first attorney job after a year to backpack through Europe for almost three months.”

D CARLOS SUGICH Partner // Snell & Wilmer // Sugich’s practice is concentrated in the areas of real estate development, hospitality, financing, leasing, and cross-border business transactions in the U.S., Mexico, and Latin America. Sugich led the firm in opening its first international office in Los Cabos, Mexico in 2008 and currently represents some of the most exclusive master planned and resort communities in the area. Attraction to industry: “It may sound like a cliché, but I became a lawyer so I could learn the law and help people who were taken advantage of by authorities or other powerful people for not knowing their rights or the rules. I guess I have been pleasantly surprised that many of my colleagues had the same motivation to become lawyers and that it is fun doing what we do.”

E DENNIS WILENCHIK Member // Wilenchik & Bartness // Wilenchik is a civil litigation attorney practicing more than 40 years in business and real estate litigation. He is a certified civil trial advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy and past chairman of the State Bar Civil Trial Practice Section. Wilenchik is rated AV Preeminent by Martindale Hubbell. Favorite book: “‘Catch 22’ by Joseph Heller. It was a comedic look at a dark situation in WWII, and the sheer stupidity of it all. It prepared me at a young age to the fact that the futility of a much deeper situation we may be caught in should not deter us from finding our own humor in it, and happily accepting our small part in the chaos that surrounds us.” 118 ABL | Nominate at


Wilenchik & Bartness, P.C. Celebrating 30 years

Wilenchik & Bartness, P.C. provides high-level civil litigation services to a select group of clients in the real estate, business, construction, and government sectors. Dennis I. Wilenchik co-founded the ďŹ rm in 1991, when he left a senior partnership at Squire Patton Boggs.

2810 North Third Street Phoenix, Arizona 85004 602.606.2810 |

(photo by Jason Black)


A ALAN BASKIN Member // Baskin Richards //


Baskin is a trial attorney whose practice emphasizes securities arbitrations, securities enforcement and regulatory matters, commercial litigation and white-collar criminal cases, including investment fraud in Phoenix. During the last 22 years, Baskin is the only attorney to obtain a fee award against the Arizona Corporation Commission in a securities case; he has done so twice. He has enjoyed similar success in securities arbitration. Baskin is one of a handful of attorneys to have obtained a seven-figure award in an Arizona NASD (now FINRA) arbitration, and has settled cases involving many millions of dollars. He also successfully defended and obtained an award of attorneys’ fees against a brokerage firm that attempted to attach a client’s assets prior to initiating an arbitration.

B JAIME DADDONA Partner // Squire Patton Boggs //


Daddona counsels public and privately held companies and focuses her practice on business and finance transactions, including domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions, private equity investment, corporate governance matters, stockholder relations matters, securities offerings and restructurings. Daddona works closely with boards of directors and senior managers on governance matters, managing debt and equity investments, and drafting and negotiating supply, distribution and other commercial agreements. Professional advice: “Your time, energy, and attitude are the only limitations to your success, and you control each of them. If you work harder and smarter than your peers, you’ll rise to the top simply because you’re the best.”

C JONATHAN FRUTKIN Principal // Radix Law //


As the founder and principal of Radix Law, Frutkin has significant experience as an attorney, a business executive, and business owner. Over the course of his career, he has owned a website design business, a software company, a real estate development company, and served as the developer for a national ice cream chain. Attraction to industry: “The most surprising thing I have found throughout my career as a business attorney is that you have highly intelligent business owners — but they struggle to understand certain legal concepts. This is where the Radix Law firm comes in as a general counsel for hire. We can help businesses with not only their legal challenges but also business opportunities.” Surprising fact: “I jumped out an airplane and tried scuba diving and didn’t like either one of them.”

D RICHARD LIEBERMAN Chairman, Corporate, Securities and Finance Department Jennings, Strouss & Salmon // Lieberman helps clients in a wide variety of business transactions, including buying and selling companies, obtaining debt financing and equity capital, structuring corporate governance, preparing contracts and compensation plans, and drafting legislation. He is recognized in seven categories by Best Lawyers in America and by Southwest Super Lawyers, among other honors. Attraction to industry: “The Watergate investigation triggered my interest in law, and getting to work on two tender offers as a summer associate spurred my interest in mergers and acquisitions and securities law. Perhaps the most surprising thing in the industry is how each transaction has different provisions unique to the needs of the various parties. It keeps it interesting and challenging.”

E BRIAN SCHULMAN Attorney // Weiss Brown // Schulman’s litigation practice focuses on business and regulatory disputes, including contract matters, fraud, securities law, shareholder disputes, business divorces, real estate, tribal law, financial services, and officer/director liability. In addition to his litigation practice, Schulman serves as outside general counsel to many of his clients, and acts as a private mediator and judge pro tempore. Surprising fact: “When I was in high school, I took break dancing lessons with my best friend, but (not surprisingly) there were no classes for our age group, so we joined a class with grade school kids. I will never forget the looks from the parents of those kids at our class recital. Alas, I can no longer pop nor lock — so don’t ask.” 120 ABL | Nominate at

Radix Law is a business law firm. We are a boutique firm, personalizing our approach to your needs. We react to your legal challenges, working every day as part of your team. We create and take advantage of opportunities for you, whether in Arizona or around the world.

15205 N. Kierland Blvd., Suite 200 | Scottsdale, Arizona 85254 | 602-606-9300

law // TAX

A YALE GOLDBERG Partner // Frazer Ryan Goldberg & Arnold //


Goldberg has a national reputation for successfully representing businesses and individuals in federal and state tax controversies. A fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel and a Certified Specialist in Tax Law, Goldberg began his career as a trial attorney for the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. He is a past chair of the Tax Section of the State Bar of Arizona and of the ABA Committee on Social Security and Payroll Tax Problems. Personal qualities: “I am by nature an optimist, a quality that has enhanced my relationships with clients, tax professionals, and government tax authorities. In representing clients, I analyze the issues that exist with the tax authorities and help my client visualize what we need to do to obtain the best possible result.”

B BRIGITTE GREEN Shareholder // Engelman Berger //



Green practices public finance (tax-exempt bond) law. She has worked on countless publicly offered and privately placed municipal bond transactions in Arizona for state agencies and universities, counties, cities, towns, school districts, special districts and conduit issuers. Green has represented governmental issuers, investment banking firms, trustee banks, and conduit borrowers. Attraction to industry: “I lucked into public finance by getting a summer associate position at Chapman and Cutler in 1988, which perfectly combined my favorite law school subject (tax) with my aversion to being a litigator. I’m surprised there are always new issues and I still really enjoy solving the puzzles.” Surprising fact: “I was born on a U.S. Air Force base in Tripoli, Libya, Africa.”

C ELIOT KAPLAN Partner // Perkins Coie // A

Kaplan focuses on private equity transactions, mergers and acquisitions, partnerships, limited liability companies and joint ventures, entity planning and structuring, entity formation and dissolution, corporate governance, fund formation and business reorganizations and restructurings and the potential and related tax liabilities triggered by complex transactions and entity structures and administrative tax controversies. Attraction to industry: “The excitement of doing large joint ventures and merger and acquisition transactions, and helping my clients establish and grow their businesses. The most surprising thing to me is how the transactions never get old and boring.” Favorite book: “George Orwell’s ‘1984.’ The book opens eyes to how various products and news are messaged. The book was prophetic.”

D RICHARD ONSAGER Partner // Onsager, Werner & Oberg, PLC // Prior to establishing his own firm, Onsager was a partner in the firm of Jennings, Strouss & Salmon. Onsager has also served as both a visiting professor and as an adjunct professor of law at Arizona State University College of Law. In 2011, Onsager was selected by the Tax Section of the Arizona State Bar to be the first recipient of the Henry Tom Outstanding Tax Attorney Award. This award is given to an attorney “who has distinguished him or herself by making significant contributions to the field of tax law.” He has been selected Lawyer of the Year in tax law for the Phoenix metropolitan area by Best Lawyers in America. Onsager is certified as a Tax Law Specialist by the State Bar of Arizona’s Board of Legal Specialization and is a past chair of the Tax Section of the Arizona State Bar.

E JAMES SUSA Shareholder // DeConcini McDonald Yetwin & Lacy // Susa’s practice is concentrated in the representation of clients in state and local taxation matters in Arizona and Nevada. Susa has represented government and private clients in property, sales, use and income tax matters before administrative and judicial tribunals in Arizona and Nevada. The State Bar of Arizona has certified Susa as a tax law specialist and he has more than 25 years of experience in litigating tax matters before the Office of Administrative Hearings, State Board of Equalization, Board of Tax Appeals, Tax Court, Court of Appeals and Supreme Court in Arizona and in the County and State Boards of Equalization, Tax Commission, District Court and Supreme Court in Nevada. Susa also has lectured extensively in Arizona and Nevada on property, sales and use tax matters. 122 ABL | Nominate at

TUCSON // law

A GLORIA GOLDMAN Goldman & Goldman // Goldman has practiced immigration and nationality law in Tucson, Arizona since 1991. In 1990, she received her J.D. from the University of Arizona. She served more than 10 years on the Board of Governors for the American Immigration Lawyers Association. Goldman represents clients in the areas of business immigration, family immigration, citizenship, as well as complicated deportation matters. Her clients include scientists, artists, battered women and children, and individuals who seek political asylum. In addition to numerous pro bono awards, Goldman has been active on commissions involving domestic violence and unaccompanied minors. Surprising fact: “I was born to Polish survivors of the Holocaust in 1948 in Germany. My mother is a survivor of Auschwitz.“



B TIBOR NAGY Tucson managing shareholder // Ogletree Deakins // Nagy is the managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins’ Tucson office. With decades of indepth employment law experience representing a wide range of employers, including the aerospace, healthcare, hospitality, retail, transportation, manufacturing and mining industries, Nagy has a keen understanding and perspective that few Arizona practitioners in the field can offer. His considerable employment law litigation, arbitration, and appellate experience complement and enrich the practical advice and creative solutions he provides to resolving complex human resources issues. Strengths: “Hard work, exceptional client service, and above all, personal integrity are three qualities without which I could not have succeeded in my career. All three remain essential to a lasting career in this field.”


C TED SCHMIDT Managing partner // Schmidt, Sethi & Akmajian // Schmidt has practiced law for more than 40 years and is the managing partner of one of Tucson’s most successful and diverse plaintiffs’ injury and wrongful death law firms. He is recognized as one of Arizona’s Top 50 lawyers by Best Lawyers in America. Schmidt is judge pro tempore in the Pima County Superior Court and an adjunct professor at the University of Arizona College of Law teaching Advanced Trial Advocacy. Schmidt is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, and the American Board of Trial Advocates. Strengths: “A love for public speaking and being in a leadership position led me to activities well suited to teaching me how to do both things well.”

D TARIK SULTAN Partner // Wolf & Sultan // Sultan has concentrated his practice exclusively in immigration law, both in private practice and as an attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice with the U.S. Immigration Court. He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for immigration law and Superlawyers as one of the top five percent in immigration law, and has the highest “AV” rating in the Martindale-Hubbell legal directory. Prior to forming Wolf & Sultan P.C., Sultan practiced in the corporate immigration practice group of a 600+ lawyer international law firm. His practice is focused in all areas and aspects of immigration law, with a particular emphasis in employment-based visas and employer sanctions defense.


E PAMELA TREADWELL-RUBIN Partner // Goering, Roberts, Rubin, Brogna, Enos & Treadwell-Rubin Treadwell-Rubin is an experienced legal veteran. Treadwell-Rubin is a State Bar Certified Specialist in Worker’s Compensation law and a former chair of the State Bar’s Workers’ Compensation Section. Treadwell-Rubin was selected for “Best Lawyers in America,” since 2009, and “Who’s Who in American Law,” 2003 to present. Her practice also focuses on civil litigation and insurance defense law. In addition, she serves as a Judge Pro Tempore at the Pima County Juvenile Court, and for Family Law Settlement Conferences. From June 2003 to June 2004, Treadwell-Rubin served as president of the State Bar of Arizona, the youngest woman to serve in that capacity. TreadwellRubin served as a prosecutor before going into private practice.


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lifestyle // OUTLOOK

Re-imagined, renewed, revealed Arizona’s hotel and resort industry continues on growth path heading into 2021 By ALISON BAILIN BATZ


he past several years have been a time of great change – at first very good and now a bit more challenging (to say the least) for the hotel and lodging industries. Certainly, the impact of COVID-19 has been felt far and wide across the globe, with perhaps no group hit harder than those around the world working within travel and tourism sectors, including the millions of people employed by hospitality, food

The Villas at Sanctuary 124 ABL | Nominate at

and beverage businesses of every shape and size. But, with steely resolve, Arizona hospitality forges ahead. Some recently completed significant upgrades. Others made the move to launch entirely new properties. And others are working toward opening over the next year, with still so much in the world uncertain. A tip of the hat to those who’ve endeavored through any of the above given the challenges faced today. Among them, these forward-thinking hotels and resorts, including those that have re-imagined or reinvented themselves in the past year-plus, those that have opened, and those soon to open:

Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa

Earlier this year, Sanctuary unveiled a series of sweeping renovations and refreshments to its private villa collection. Rebranded as The Villas at Sanctuary, these eight architecturally distinctive mountain homes offer resort guests the intimacy of a private retreat with full access to Sanctuary’s award-winning resort amenities, from the world-class Sanctuary Spa to critically acclaimed dining at elements restaurant and jade bar to a wide array of recreational activities. Now known

The Rainbow Room, Lake Powell Resort

Canopy By Hilton Tempe Downtown

as Villa del Sol, Villa Roca, Villa Montana, Villa Mesa, Villa Luna, Villa Norte, and Villa Ventana, the eight villas occupy more than an acre of land each and feature amenities ranging from private pools and Jacuzzis to wrap-around terraces and home theaters. Several have undergone changes in the past year ranging from complete transformations to modest remodeling.

Lake Powell Resort

In the early spring, Lake Powell Resort – the only lodging inside Glen Canyon National Recreation Area – reopened its signature restaurant, the Rainbow Room, after a head-to-toe renovation. Since the panoramic views of Lake Powell have always taken center stage from the dramatic floor to ceiling windows, the décor needed to complement the views. As such, a fresh palette of earthy desert tones in the new flooring and furnishings define the contemporary sophistication, upholstered in rich shades of dark chocolate accented with cloth napkins in teal. New sleek custom lighting gives the restaurant a feeling of both elegant and inviting. New outdoor furnishings were also added to further enhance a relaxed and sublime dining experience.

Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

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lifestyle // OUTLOOK

Fairmont Scottsdale Princess

The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, Arizona’s largest and longest-running AAA Five Diamond hotel, recently completed an impressive renovation of 458 standard guest rooms and 20 luxury suites. The new guest room design features a soft, tranquil desert décor with clean, modern lines and furnishings; custom designed-mattresses and cool, crisp new bedding; modernized bathrooms with sleek, polished stone and oversized walk-in showers replacing the Mexican tile and bathtubs; and meaningful technology upgrades, including an Echo Dot with an “Ask the Princess’ menu to answer guests’ most frequently asked questions. The upgrade also included an update to the famed Princess Pool, which was the first of the six pools to open with the resort in 1987 and recognized as one of the Top Ten Pools in America. The pool deck is now a single level with eight new cabanas and added seating, offering sweeping views of the McDowell Mountains and TPC Scottsdale. Two new whirlpools were also added as was a new waterside eatery and communal bar area.

Gila River Hotels & Casinos – Wild Horse Pass

This year, Wild Horse Pass broke ground on a $143 million expansion project in Chandler. Scheduled to open in fall 2021, at the center of the expansion project is a new 11-story hotel tower, which adds 205 guestrooms including six poolside suites, 27 tower suites and two 1,500-squarefoot Platinum Suites. The expansion will feature an added 18,000 square feet of indoor meeting space and 4,000 square feet of outdoor meeting space as well as new amenities including an oversized oasis pool area with two hot tubs, full-service cabanas and access to the Bar & Grill and a new adult pool. The casino floor will also be revamped with new carpeting, color palette, lighting fixtures and a LED screen overhanging the floor stretching 80 feet wide and 12 feet tall. Every new element will be finished with custom artwork from 17 different artists who reside in the Gila River Indian Community.

Talking Stick Resort

Talking Stick Resort recently announced

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a host of new amenities slated to open in early-to-mid 2021. Notably, the enhancement will bring a new restaurant, new bar and significant renovations to its high-limit lounge. The restaurant will be modern and upscale with a Mediterranean influence. It will feature hand-crafted cocktails with fresh, local fruits, herbs and vegetables. Dining will be comprised of booths and tables for nearly 60, a full bar and patio as well as floor to ceiling windows offering amazing views. Downstairs, final plans are still being made, but the planned bar – called Sage Bar – will surprise and delight with a bevy of new offerings.

ADERO Scottsdale

ADERO Scottsdale debuted in October following a $100 million investment as a Marriott International Autograph Collection. With its elevated views of Arizona’s famed Four Peaks and McDowell Mountain Range, ADERO is Scottsdale’s only Dark Sky Zone resort boasting 177 guest rooms including 16 oversized suites, fitness activities, nature experiences, art, wellness cuisine, and culture. Spanning across 55,000 acres of Sonoran Desert, with endless adventure at its fingertips, the property’s Adventure Concierge offers morning to night hikes, biking excursions led by McDowell Cycling, astrology sessions with on-property ‘Star Dudes’ and more, to connect guests to the wonder of its natural setting. Guests can recharge with featured wellness cocktails or desert-inspired treatments at ADERO’s boutique spa, or dine at its signature restaurant, CIELO meaning ‘sky,’ which will offer one of the best views in Scottsdale and an inventive cuisine created with regionally sourced ingredients.

Canopy by Hilton Scottsdale Old Town

Designed as a natural extension of Scottsdale’s historic arts district, Canopy by Hilton Scottsdale Old Town opened in October and offers a vibrant Southwest energy infused with Mid-Century Modern sophistication in every aspect of its architecture, aesthetic, service and culture. The seven-story, full-service hotel offers a variety of locally inspired amenities that create a lively and energetic space to work, rest and play from early morning to late-

night, including a state-of-the-art fitness center with Technogym equipment; the ground-floor signature restaurant, Cobre Kitchen & Cocktails showcasing a menu of thoughtful cuisine with an emphasis on Southwest touches and locally sourced ingredients; and Outrider Rooftop Lounge, the rooftop pool and bar that elevates the Scottsdale social scene with crafted cocktails, posh bites and unrivaled views of the Camelback Mountain.

Canopy By Hilton Tempe Downtown

Also opened in recent months, Canopy by Hilton Tempe Downtown is a contemporary hotel nestled in the heart of vibrant downtown Tempe. The distinctive hotel offers 198 spacious guest rooms and suites with a modern aesthetic inspired by the spirit of the Southwest. Spanning 14 floors and amenities include approximately 5,000 square feet of meeting and event space, an expansive private fitness center with a wellness flex space and a rooftop pool deck including a terrace bar, cabanas and a fire pit. The hotel’s signature restaurant, Alter Ego, features modern American fusion cuisine crafted with locally-sourced ingredients and regional dishes. The 14th floor rooftop bar, Alibi, provides a scenic venue for gathering, tapas-style light bites and a curated local cocktail menu.

Ambiente, A Landscape Hotel

On track to open in Sedona next Spring, Ambiente will be comprised of 40 cubedshaped guest atriums elevated above the ground by steel piers. Each atrium will offer striking 360-degree views of Sedona’s famous red rocks and the surrounding Coconino National Forest. Built using matte-charcoal colored metal and floorto-ceiling, bronze-tinted glass walls, many atriums will have access to their own private rooftop decks with a secure staircase for the ultimate sunbathing and stargazing experience. The center of the property, a lagoon-inspired pool and spa surrounded by private cabanas will be positioned contiguous to an open-air Poolside Lounge serving fresh, farm-to-table cuisine and locally-sourced juices. The Lounge will house a full service, indoor/outdoor bar complete with multiple TVs, ample lounge seating, fire pits and a catering kitchen.

lifestyle // AUTO DEALERS


A BRENT BERGE Owner // Berge Ford and Bell Ford // Berge founded Berge Auto Group for the purpose of delivering quality products and service to customers and to provide jobs and job security for its employees, as well as benefitting the community. Berge’s commitment in each location is made only after determining the quality of the products and services which can be furnished to the public. Company strengths: “Our main focus is providing the highest level of customer service possible and our dedication in this area has paid off with our biggest strength: customer satisfaction.”

B WILLIAM COULTER CEO // Coulter Automotive Group // Coulter is the third generation owner of the Coulter Automotive Group, and his management philosophy is evident in the attributes of the individuals he selects for his sales and customer service teams. All employees, from the hands-on parts and service personnel to the first sales representative you meet in the showroom, personify the Coulter commitment to excellence: Commitment to matching their customer’s needs with the right product, not to pressure, manipulate or “up-sell”; and commitment to creating an environment where their customers know that Coulter sales and service representatives are their “car advisors” whose primary job is their complete satisfaction. Today, Coulter manages a 516-member “family” of loyal employees that carry on that simple philosophy.


C BULL EARNHARDT General manager // Earnhardt Lexus // Earnhardt is the owner and operator of Earnhardt Lexus. Built from the ground up after the Earnhardt Lexus Central Phoenix site was acquired in 2014, the Camelback Lexus dealership spans 67,000 square feet. Earnhardt says the Camelback dealership will help Earnhardt Auto Centers continue to provide its selection of L/Certified Lexus vehicles. He is the grandson of Tex Earnhardt, founder and CEO of Earnhardt Auto Centers. Impact of location: “Obviously, we’re excited to be close to the Biltmore, Moon Valley and Phoenix. It’s an area of redevelopment. There’s a lot going on in Central Phoenix. Our customers can get to us a lot better than they could at our old location.”



D ERNIE GARCIA III President, CEO and chairman // Carvana // Garcia co-founded Carvana and has served as president and CEO since its inception in 2012. Prior to founding Carvana, Garcia held various roles at the DriveTime Automotive Group from January 2007 to January 2013. From January 2007 to December 2008, he served as a financial strategist. He was a managing director of corporate finance from December 2008 to November 2009. From November 2009 until January 2013, he served as a vice president and treasurer and director of quantitative analytics. Impact of technology: “Throughout our entire process – whether it’s acquiring cars, reconditioning cars, the way we provide financing to customers, the way we price cars, the way we sell cars – everything is done in a way that leverages the way technology is available.”

E DAVID KIMMERLE CEO // Sanderson Ford // Kimmerle is proud that Sanderson Ford has been in business for more than 60 years. He gives the credit to the employees, customers and the Sanderson philosophy of doing business. For their 60th year Sanderson donated more than $1 million in food, toys, clothing and money to serve those in need. The dealership also works with veterans and Seats for Soldiers as a way to honor those who have served. Sanderson Ford is the only dealership in the area that is closed on Sundays, a management philosophy that Kimmerle has that allows employees to spend time with family. The dealership was originally founded by Don Sanderson, Kimmerle’s father-in-law.

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lifestyle // JEWELERS


A RANDY COFFIN President // Coffin & Trout Fine Jewelers // Coffin started his jewelry career over 44 years ago. Coffin & Trout is now entering it’s 36th year of building award-winning jewelry here in the Valley. He has recently been recognized with several AGTA Spectrum Awards for his designs, which is considered the Oscar’s of the jewelry industry. Attraction to industry: “Jewelry allowed me to utilize my God-given gifts to be creative with one of the world’s most beautiful mediums — i.e. precious metals and gemstones. The surprise was how much satisfaction I derive from the pleasure my designs bring to people when they are celebrating special times in their lives.” Surprising fact: “My love for fly fishing and the pleasures that I derive from all that this great sport has to offer. I love that it takes me to some of the most beautiful places on earth.”


B SCOTT GAUTHIER Founder and CEO // Gauthier Jewelry // Over the past 25 years, Gauthier has become one of the most renowned and recognized high-end jewelry designers in the country. His unrivaled work favors a clean and modern aesthetic, accented with some of the world’s most precious and rare gemstones. Gauthier designs and molds each piece himself, creating distinctive works of art that reveal his contemporary vision. The purity of each design is inspired by nature, gemstones, architecture and his past creations. As influential as he is cutting-edge, Gauthier continues to reinvent himself, constantly developing new techniques and building off previous inspirations to gain new insight and direction.


C EDMUND MARSHALL, E.D. Owner // E.D. Marshall Jewelers // Since 1971, Marshall has earned a distinctive reputation for providing clients with Arizona’s largest selection of high end gems, GIA certified diamonds, custom jewelry and new and pre-owned luxury watches. From the beginning, Marshall established very high standards for quality and customer service. In 1981, Capriccio Fine Jewelry was opened in Scottsdale to offer jewelry designs that were created by the craftsmen in the manufacturing shop at E. D. Marshall Inc. In 1995, Marshall opened E. D. Marshall Jewelers in a newly renovated building on Scottsdale Road, which continues the tradition of manufacturing original fine jewelry designs, with an emphasis on perfection of craftsmanship.

D ALFREDO MOLINA Chairman and CEO // Molina Fine Jewelers // Internationally recognized jeweler and top gemological expert known worldwide, Molina is chairman and CEO of Molina Fine Jewelers and Black, Starr & Frost, America’s first jeweler since 1723. Both names are synonymous with sophisticated designs, rare gemstones, and creating historic jewelry for America’s captains of industry, as well as Hollywood celebrities and royal families. Attraction to industry: “Since the age of eight, I have honored my family heritage with its lineage dating back to 1634 in Milan, Italy. In following tradition and as the oldest grandson, I had no option but to learn the family trade.” Surprising fact: “I am sentimental and cry during movies and the movie ‘Stuart Little’ was no exception. My children would find humor in the streams of tears pouring out my eyes.”

E TOM SCHMITT Co-owner // Schmitt Jewelers // Schmitt has been working in the family-owned business since 1982. The founders of Schmitt Jewelers followed an opportunity in 1970 to locate to the burgeoning city of Phoenix, Arizona where economic growth, climate and hospitality promised success for a family jewelry business. As the Phoenix rises, so did Schmitt Jewelers. The business steadily grew from an unassuming mom and pop operation to an industry-leading, cutting-edge retail jeweler specializing in custom jewelry design and on-site manufacturing. For nearly 50 years, Schmitt Jewelers has been serving the Phoenix area neighborhoods of North Central, Paradise Valley, Arcadia and beyond with its” Attraction to industry: “It’s a fun business to be in. You get to help people celebrate big occasions.”

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A LAUREN BAILEY CEO and co-founder // Upward Projects //


Bailey leads the company’s strategy, while also maintaining the infectiously dynamic attitude of the staff — more than 70 of them. She’s also the driving force behind the design and conceptualization of new projects. A passionate promoter of the local food scene, Bailey is a steering committee member for Devour Phoenix, has been inducted into the Arizona Culinary Hall of Fame as Restaurateur of the Year and honored as a Food Pioneer by the Arizona Restaurant Association. Professional advice: “Be willing to take risks and be uncomfortable regularly. You have to quantify what’s the worst that can happen, decide whether you can deal with it, and then go for it or don’t. It’s a simple equation that helps to quickly evaluate every day decisions as well as long-term risks.”


B LISA DAHL Owner and executive chef // Dahl Restaurant Group // Dahl is one of the country’s leading female chefs and restaurateurs who has pioneered the culinary scene in Sedona for the past 20 years. Dahl is the executive chef and owner of four outstanding restaurants in Northern Arizona’s red rock country where she has earned international acclaim for Dahl & Di Luca Ristorante Italiano, Cucina Rustica, Pisa Lisa and her newest, most buzzed-about addition, Mariposa Latin Inspired Grill. Personal strengths: “Growing up, I was the daughter of a family who operated a women’s clothing business, which is where I spent most of my time. I’ve loved the hospitality side of the business since I was younger. In fact, I’m fairly certain my first five words were, ‘How may I help you?’”

C RYAN HIBBERT CEO // Riot Hospitality Group //


Hibbert knows what it takes to be successful in the hospitality industry. It was in 2010 when the Arizona native founded Riot Hospitality Group, a Scottsdale-based hospitality management company dedicated to evolving the typical restaurant landscape into one which provides unique and meaningful experiences. Nearly a decade later, Hibbert and his team continue to find success in a highly competitive market. Attraction to industry: “I truly enjoy the creative aspect of the Hospitality business. Developing conceptual environments is a passion that I would not be able to find in any other business, and I’ve been blessed to have created some of the most impactful concepts in the business.” Surprising fact: “I’ve said this in the past, but I’m a true science nerd.”

D TOMASO MAGGIORE Executive chef // Tomaso’s Italian Restaurant //



An Italian born and trained culinary expert, Chef Tomaso Maggiore has been serving the Valley authentic Italian cuisine for over forty years. Maggiore, through his frequent travels to Italy, has created a fresh approach to authentic Italian cuisine. He uses the finest ingredients, innovative recipes and the latest techniques to incorporate the true essence of Italy in every bite of food he serves. Role model: “My mom always had a passion for cooking. She could make a wonderful meal out of nothing for everyone.” Attraction to industry: “Food was always the medium of entertainment in my household. Today, still, I love the fact that you get all these ingredients and put them all together and you come up with the most wonderful taste and experience. That never ceases to amaze me.”

E LINDA NASH Owner // Barrio Queen // Attraction to industry: “I was most attracted to the food and beverage industry by the unique challenges it presents. With my husband Steve’s long tenure in food and beverage and expertise in finance, and my background in systems and compliance, we make a good team.” Favorite book: “The most interesting book I’ve read is ‘Start-Up Nation,’ by Dan Senor and Saul Singer. It is an amazing read, and teaches you how a small country can overcome adversity to become a leading country of inventors.” Surprising fact: “I love a good adventure. I’ve backpacked across many countries. I’ve gone skydiving, bungee jumping, and ziplining. I’ve swum with the sharks, I’ve raced mountain bikes, I’ve even raced snowmobiles! I love the outdoors and my two favorite countries are New Zealand and Finland.”

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lifestyle // SPORTS

A MICHAEL BIDWILL President // Arizona Cardinals Football Club // Bidwill was instrumental in the effort that led to the creation of the University of Phoenix Stadium. The stadium has been noted as a catalyst for the Cardinal’s recent success and the team has sold out every game it’s played since the venue’s opening. Social justice and sports: “I think it’s important to speak up. People are saying stick to sports? You know what? We ask our players 20 days a year — game days — to restrict their statements. The rest of the days, we want our players to get engaged in the community. Just like I am and other owners are. I’m working with an NFL committee called the Social Justice Committee, where we’re working with players across the league to get them more involved in changing policy and making America a better place for everyone.”


B JULIE GIESE President // Phoenix Raceway // Named the president of Phoenix Raceway, the home of the NASCAR Championship, in 2018, Giese has nearly 20 years of experience in motorsports, working in a number of areas of business, including public relations, marketing and design and development. Currently the only female president of a NASCAR track, Giese has been recognized for her achievements in sports business by many top publications, including Forbes Women in Sports to Watch in 2019, Cynopsis Top Women in Sports and Sports Business Journal’s 2019 “Game Changers: Women in Sports Business.” Role model: “My parents are incredible role models. They taught me the value of hard work at an early age and to not shy away from a challenge. They walk the walk every day and don’t let anything stop them.”



C KEN KENDRICK Managing general partner // Arizona Diamondbacks //


A charter member of the ownership group that brought baseball to Phoenix, Kendrick was named managing general partner of the Diamondbacks in 2004. During his tenure in that role, the team has reached the postseason three times, including 2017, and has become one of the largest philanthropic entities in the Valley, as the D-backs and the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation have donated more than $70 million since their inception. Attraction to industry: “I am a lifelong baseball fan and am surprised at the complexities of operating a major league organization. Most fans, including me, think they know more about the game than they actually do.” Surprising fact: “Most of my best friends are from my childhood.”

D BOB PARSONS Founder // PXG //


Parsons, best known as the founder of GoDaddy, is widely recognized for his entrepreneurial and philanthropic efforts. Currently, he is a member of the GoDaddy board of directors and is the CEO and founder of YAM Worldwide, which is home to his entrepreneurial ventures in the fields of motorcycles, golf, real estate, marketing, innovation and philanthropy. Attraction to industry: “Parsons Xtreme Golf was founded in 2014 because I wanted to prove I could get more out of my golf equipment. With revolutionary patented technology, the world’s finest materials, and zero cost or time restraints, PXG products would be golf clubs without compromise.”

E TIM SCHANTZ President and CEO // Troon // Schantz has over 30 years’ experience specializing in corporate and real estate transactional matters, with the last twenty plus years focused on the golf and leisure sector. Prior to joining Troon in 1998, Schantz spent five years in the California offices of the international law firm Latham & Watkins, followed by three years as vice president, senior corporate counsel for the Phoenix-based lodging company, Doubletree Corporation. Schantz leads the company’s senior executive team and has responsibility for helping to guide all aspects of the company’s general matters and strategy. A licensed attorney, Schantz received his B.A. from the University of Colorado and his J.D. from the University of Kansas. He currently serves on the Board of the National Golf Foundation (NGF).

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lifestyle // TOURISM

A BRIDGET BINSBACHER Director of operations // Cactus League // Mother, wife, businesswoman, volunteer and Peoria city council member, Binsbacher has been a tireless leader in the community for more than 30 years. Named one of the Top Five Women in Business Leaders of Arizona and the first employee of the Arizona Cactus League Baseball Association, her dedication to service is unparalleled. The 2018 Cactus League season generated an estimated economic impact of $644.2 million Personal strengths: “Communication and relationship building are critical components to achieving any mission. Honest communication comes with risks and it is hard work, especially when leading others. Truthfulness can hurt, but it can also heal and inspire. I learned long ago that we are as successful as the relationships and collaborations we foster.”



B DEBBIE JOHNSON Director // Arizona Office of Tourism // As director of the Arizona Office of Tourism, Johnson oversees the development and implementation of marketing programs that influence global visitation and generate record-breaking visitor spending in Arizona. These programs are implemented in local, regional, national and international markets. Her current focus is leading Arizona’s tourism economic recovery efforts to mitigate the negative impact of the global pandemic. Role models: “Sandra Day O’Connor and Gabrielle Giffords. Two of the most amazing Arizona leaders who have demonstrated to us time and time again that women can be strong, smart and dedicated, while still being respectful, kind and committed.” Surprising fact: “I worked in the tourism industry for over 15 years before I ever had a passport.”

C STEVE MOORE President and CEO // Visit Phoenix // A 40-year veteran of the industry, Moore came to Visit Phoenix in early 2002 and helped secure funding for the expansion of the Phoenix Convention Center and was inducted into the Arizona Tourism Hall of Fame in 2012. Source of pride: “Being in a key team position for the marketing and opening of large convention centers in three major cities that remain vibrant. Also, being a part of the groups that booked or hosted two Super Bowls, two Final Fours, two NBA all-star events and a Major League Baseball AllStar Weekend.” Professional advice: “In the convention and visitors world, you must be dedicated 24/7. Also — in any industry — when sending an email, don’t push ‘send’ before you’ve really thought about it.”


D KIM SABOW President and CEO // Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association //



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Sabow serves as the president and CEO of AzLTA, where she leads the advocacy, communication, collaboration and education efforts for one of the state’s leading industries. Prior to joining AzLTA, she served as Gov. Doug Ducey’s director of international affairs and as executive director of the Arizona-Mexico Commission. Professional advice: “Surround yourself with strong talent. Hire people smarter than you. Listen. Communicate. Take risks and don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Never stop learning. It’s OK not to have all of the answers. Focus on collaboration and modernization. Most of all, be authentic and do what you love.” Surprising fact: “I have a passion for sports. I grew up playing competitive tennis and went to college on a tennis scholarship.”

E RACHEL SACCO President and CEO // Experience Scottsdale // Sacco has been an integral part of Experience Scottsdale for over three decades. She joined the Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce in 1986 to lead its tourism division. In 2001, Experience Scottsdale separated from the Chamber, becoming a stand-alone organization with Sacco as its president and CEO. Attraction to industry: “The travel industry is a portal to the world, introducing ideas and cultures we may otherwise never encounter. In this industry, I have learned that no matter how far you travel, you will always find commonalities with the people you meet. In that, travel changes our perspectives and lives forever. Favorite book: ‘The Glass Bead Game’ and ‘Siddhartha,’ both by Hermann Hesse, introduced me to new ways of thinking when I was in college.”


A DREW ALCAZAR Owner and CEO // Russo and Steele // Alcazar and his wife launched Russo and Steele Collector Automobiles in 2000, featuring two specialty auctions annually — one in Scottsdale in January and the other in Monterey, Calif. in August. Professional advice: “Any form of entrepreneurship requires fairly extreme levels of both insanity and tenacity. When you do what we do, it’s a 24-hour-a-day, seven-day-a-week, 365-day commitment. You have to not only live, but completely love what it is that you do and understand going in that there will be pitfalls. Those that we see succeed not only in this industry, but across the board, possess an unwavering desire to reach the top of the mountain, they don’t allow themselves to be effected by the risks and the inevitable disappointments involved and they focus solely on living their dreams.”



B JUDI COMBS Partner and CEO // Arizona Fine Art EXPO // Thunderbird Artists was founded in 1981 by Combs and is still owned and operated by her. She began with small, local shows in Arizona until March of 1992, when she produced her first juried fine art festival in Scottsdale. The overwhelming success of Thunderbird Artists’ first festival led to additional festivals in Carefree, Sedona, Denver, Lake Tahoe, Tucson, Colorado and Scottsdale. Attraction to industry: “Thunderbird Artists isn’t a job to our family; it is a passion that plays a central part in all of our lives. Our goal is to provide an outstanding variety of mediums, subject matters, sizes and price ranges that satisfy the desires of each and every patron that strolls through one of our festivals.”

C CRAIG JACKSON Chairman and CEO // Barrett Jackson Auction Company Jackson has earned a reputation as one of the world’s most respected car collectors and restoration experts with nearly 40 years in the industry. Jackson has helped propel BarrettJackson’s evolution into being the world’s leading collector car auction and automotive lifestyle event. Professional advice: “To succeed in this industry, you not only need knowledge, but also tremendous passion and an unparalleled work ethic. If you do what you love, it never feels like work.” Source of pride: “Building the Barrett-Jackson brand and creating a legacy. Barrett-Jackson changed this industry by setting the standard of honesty, transparency and integrity. Also, I’m proud we provide the platform to raise funds for many charities, because that was a cornerstone of our company from day one.”




D W. SCOTT JENKINS Tournament chairman // Waste Management Phoenix Open Jenkins is a partner with the law firm of Quarles & Brady and his practice focuses on commercial disputes and complex litigation. Additionally, he is chair of the firm’s local Bankruptcy Group and Recruiting Committee. Jenkins assumes the role of Tournament Chairman after serving last year as assistant tournament chairman alongside Tim Woods. He will guide The Thunderbirds in the planning and execution of every facet of the 2021 event, including sponsorship generation and renewals, security and safety, recruiting PGA TOUR players to the event, community relations, logistics, and development of on-course venues.

E TARYL O’SHEA Executive director // Arabian Horse Association of Arizona O’Shea is a professional with broad experience in direct and influence management to maximize organizational potential. She has expertise in strategy development, community integration, and fiscal growth. She leads the Arabian Horse Association of Arizona, a nonprofit organization that is comprised of Arabian horse owners, breeders, and enthusiasts from around the world. The group organizes the annual Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show. Childhood ambition: “I wanted to be a truck driver so I could travel the country seeing all the horses in the pastures. This was a family Sunday ritual, even at a young age I was enamored by horses.” Nominate at | ABL 137



One of Arizona’s true industry leaders, Hart is a 47-year hospitality veteran and has been with Marriott for a majority of those years. He oversees all Marriott development and operations in Arizona. He is the driving force behind Marriott Worldwide Business Councils and has served on various board positions. Role models: “My dad, Jim Hart, for his incredible work ethic and commitment to our family. Bill Marriott, an incredible leader that had every skill in the book and set a standard that no one could compete with. A true friend to me and so many.” Attraction to industry: “People attracted me to what’s evolved into a life long and rewarding career with Marriott. It’s critical to be associated with a company that has a working, constantly evolving culture and is centered around its associates first.”




A STEVE HART General manager and area general manager Marriott International //

B DAVID KONG President and CEO // Best Western International // Kong is an industry leader with a long track record of success. Since being named president and CEO of Best Western Hotels & Resorts in 2004, Kong has led the company to significant financial results, including an average RevPAR index of more than 109 over the past six years, as well as unprecedented success in guest loyalty and hotel satisfaction. Best Western has a global network of more than 4,200 hotels with annual hotel revenue of more than $7 billion. Personal strengths: “Growing up in Hong Kong and witnessing the work ethic of my parents, I understood the value of hard work. As an immigrant, I recognized that I had to work harder than others to get ahead. So that’s what I did and I took on every challenge that I could find.”

C SCOTT LYON Founder and CEO // Westroc Hospitality //


Lyon grew up in real estate, learning the business from his father Rusty, founder of Westcor. Leadership of the renovation and expansion of Scottsdale Fashion Square highlights Scott Lyon’s tenure at Westcor. In 1998, Scott formed a company devoted to the development and management of hotel/resort properties and created Westroc Hospitality, which manages the Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain, the iconic Hotel Valley Ho, Paradise Valley’s Mountain Shadows and Castle Hot Springs. Personal strengths: “I place a very high value on people, recognizing that in order to excel you must rely on the talent of others. This is especially important in the world of hospitality. I focus on taking great care of our employees, knowing that they will take great care of our guests.”

D KENNETH MANUEL, JR. CEO // Gila River Hotels & Casinos // Not only did Manuel, Jr., grow up in the Gila River Indian Community in southern Arizona, he has worked in the gaming and hospitality industries for his community for 25 years. He’s held positions across departments at Gila River-owned ventures, from entry level to C-suite. He was involved in his community’s first foray into gaming, beginning as a slot attendant. Attraction to industry: “I’ve grown up in this business. So many of our team members, I have worked alongside with, from day one. So many of the folks that I grew up with, within the Gila River Indian Community, work here today. Whether they’re relatives, neighbors, friends, people who know my family, people that I went to school with - these are the folks that I interact with on a regular basis.”

E JACK MILLER Regional vice president, Central U.S. region Fairmont Hotels & Resorts/Fairmont Scottsdale Princess // Miller joined the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess in 2009 as general manager of the iconic 750-room, AAA Five Diamond resort in the Sonoran Desert. His role expanded to regional vice president in 2017. Miller, a 40-year veteran of the hospitality industry, has overseen the Princess’ unprecedented expansion with the new Palomino Conference Center, 102 new guest rooms, the new Sunset Beach and award-winning events. Professional advice: “Find a career that you can truly be passionate about. Life is too short to spend time in a career that doesn’t inspire you. If you’re passionate and inspired, you’ll invest your time, talent and energies in success. Loving what you do is truly success.” 138 ABL

professional services // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

A LOOK INTO THE FUTURE Digital technologies and marketing automation are at the forefront of trends that will impact your business in 2021 By ERIN THORBURN


ocal Field Marketing Execution and the management of marketing logistics through MarTech, short for marketing technology, are some of the most important trends to track as we make our way toward 2021 — and beyond — according to Robert Anderson, chief executive officer of Prisma Graphic. Now more than ever, digital technologies and marketing automation are at the forefront. “Chief marketing officers will invest more in marketing automation platforms with solutions that deliver efficiency and optimization,” predicts Anderson. “CMO’s are putting more into their branding efforts and data and will need help with field marketing execution to continue to find new clients and retain existing clients.” ALPHABET SOUP SEO, SEM, CRM, CDPs and DMPs aren’t only MarTech acronyms—they’re increasingly essential components every professional services business should get to know.

140 ABL | Nominate at

Spelled out, search engine optimization, search engine marketing, customer relationship management, customer data platforms and data management platforms are only a few of the elements of MarTech that will continue to play a pivotal role for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Field marketing execution through systematic MarTech applications will only become more important as the business economy struggles to rebound (postpandemic), according to Anderson. CRM, in particular, has and continues to be vital in professional services (think programs like Salesforce that have proven longevity in the Martech field). As part of customer relations management, chat software is seeing a significant uptick. Chat software enables consumers to instantly communicate with businesses— WhatsApp, WeChat and Facebook Messenger, as top contenders. In fact, according to Hubspot, “Nearly one in three eCommerce (conversational commerce) buyers say they chat with businesses in order to determine if they’re trustworthy and credible.”

ROBERT ANDERSON: “Chief marketing officers will invest more in marketing automation platforms with solutions that deliver efficiency and optimization,� the chief executive officer of Prisma Graphic predicts.

Nominate at | ABL 141

professional services // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

“Be a great ‘people picker’ and empower employees to be their best.” — Robert Anderson

UTILIZING TECHNOLOGY And, while MarTech continues to trailblaze, companies are finding success in synchronizing new technologies with operational systems already in place. Prisma, for example, has seen great success in marrying its digital marketing technology solution, DirectMail360, with its direct mail marketing. “It combines digital and direct-mail marketing inviting complete visibility into how campaigns perform through real-time dashboards,” Anderson explains. “The software delivers mail tracking, call tracking, Informed Delivery ride-along ads, and digital ads served through the Google Network and Social Media Channels during a campaign.” “This is a game-changer for our financial, healthcare, non-profit and retail clients,” adds Anderson. “Providing a potential campaign response lift between 20 percent and 40 percent.” Initiatives like DirectMail360 point to the added value that comes with utilizing dynamic systems designed to improve efficiencies. With many uncertainties in the long-game outcomes from the pandemic, service-centric businesses must be as mindful, concise and adaptable as possible to compete. “On the BI side, all of our equipment in the press room learns our best practices for color and make-ready setups,” Anderson says. “We are also experimenting with drones for our warehouse and fulfillment area, speeding up our package and shipping capabilities.” NEED FOR ADAPTABILITY Offering real-time, more effective procedures, and measurable marketing data analytics will likely remain a priority for some time in the wake of COVID-19. And, the professional services realm will need to remain nimble and prepared for change as other industries navigate what comes next.

142 ABL | Nominate at

“While some verticals are in decline, we are seeing increases in others due to a rise in communications between companies and their clients,” Anderson says. “Prisma’s restaurant and hotel verticals have been hit hard. However, we are seeing a lot of bag stuffers, pick-up signage, take out signage and disposable menus in the restaurant space. The healthcare, pharmaceutical and financial service sectors have all been very busy for us.” Even amidst pockets in demand from their own clients during the pandemic, Prisma managed to produce over 30,000 face shields, and close to one hundred clear intubation boxes to protect health care workers during the intubation procedure. The Prisma Fulfillment and Wide Format teams also sent close to 15,000 packages to their healthcare and retail clients. Each contained safety signage, thermometers, masks and cleaning supplies. In addition, free COVID-19 safety signage was made available to small and medium-sized businesses throughout the Arizona market. HIGHER EXPECTATIONS Giving back and relationship building should persist, taking top priority for consumer-driven businesses in the pandemic’s aftermath. And, not simply for B2B purposes, but internally as well. Reinforcing positive relationships both outward (with clients) and internally (with employees) will require a delicate balance as many companies have been forced to significantly cut back on their resources. “We believe companies will continue to expect more from their sales and marketing departments, but with fewer people,” Anderson says. One of the ways Prisma has been able to fulfill expectations and bolster both internal and external relationships is through its Marketing Supply Chain Technology. “It takes the chaos and

logistics components out of the equation for our clients’ sales and marketing efforts, allowing them to focus on go-to-market strategy, sales execution and maintaining positive client relationships,” Anderson says. As for fostering healthy employee relationships, Anderson places equal importance. “Be a great ‘people picker’ and empower employees to be their best,” Anderson says. “When I meet the right people, I immediately know that I can provide them the opportunity to grow, personally, professionally and in their chosen field.” GIVING BACK At Prisma, employees participate in quarterly town hall meetings where (pre-COVID) all employees gather together to hear from leadership on all business updates and team wins, while also being able to ask questions. Anderson even bestows “Prismy Awards” to recognize exceptional employees at the event. Digital monthly newsletters go out to the team for better communication, celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, and positive feedback from clients etc. “It’s imperative to build strong relationships with your leadership team,” Anderson says. “It fosters great collaboration and builds trust.” It also helps create what Anderson describes as a client-driven culture. As a result of prioritizing employee relationships, “an unrelenting focus on client retention and fanatical client service develops—from production to leadership.” And, it also helps to ensure everyone has a little fun. “We recreated the Wayne’s World set and got into full costume to talk about the ‘Top 10 things about Prisma’,” Anderson says. “With the world as crazy as it is, we need more laughter (and we got it).”

21st century technology that can revolutionize your business Over 300 top brands use Prisma’s dokshop technology to manage their multi-location marketing.

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professional services // ACCOUNTING

A MARK DREHER Managing partner // Wallace Plese + Dreher //



Dreher has more than 25 years of public accounting experience. He provides assurance and business consulting to Arizona-based private companies. Specializing in transitional due diligence, he develops financing strategies and operational improvements for expansions, purchases, sales, mergers and acquisitions, owner transitions, and exiting. Committed to adding value to Arizona’s business community, he is actively engaged in community and nonprofit organizations. Attraction to industry: “Analytical since childhood, I would track sports statistics, as a fan of professional sports and my own. Analysis of key factors improves performance and strategy. When I decided to study business management, accounting seemed natural as it is the language of business. Metrics learned early in my career remain valid.”

B VICTORIA HARRIS Managing shareholder // Hunter Hagan & Company // Often characterized as “not your typical CPA,” Harris is devoted to helping her clients navigate complex and confusing tax laws. The professionals at Hunter Hagan handle a wide variety of domestic and international tax compliance and consulting, while Harris’ focus is geared toward high-net-worth families and trust and estate issues. Mentor: “My daughter, Sarah, is my role model. Our personalities couldn’t be more opposite, yet I’ve learned to be a better person and leader in my quest to understand her. She’s taught me to suspend my natural inclination and be more open to others’ opinions, feelings and ideas.” Surprising book: “Before becoming a CPA, I worked for the Gap and Mervyns in the Bay Area and then ran my own poster business before going to ASU to study accounting.”


C SHAYNE NEUWIRTH President // Shayne R. Neuwirth CPA // Neuwirth is the principal of Shayne R. Neuwirth CPA PLLC, a woman-owned-and-operated CPA firm in Scottsdale, providing tax, accounting, and consulting services to both individual and business clients. Attraction to industry: “Accounting is the foundation for all business and in order to be successful, I had to understand these fundamental skills, regardless of where my career was headed. What surprised me the most was how I have become a key advisor, providing guidance on board aspects of their business and finances.” Surprising fact: “I am a mom to twin toddlers and two mini goldendoodles. I spend the majority of my free time introducing my twins to my favorite childhood activities, including books, songs, swimming and the Disney classics.”

D ANDREW SPILLUM Chief practice officer - West Region // Eide Bailly // A

Spillum is an experienced accountant who works with clients in all stages, from start-up ventures to long-standing operations. He also serves as partner-in-charge of the Arizona market and chief practice officer of the West Region. Attraction to industry: “I have truly enjoyed the challenge of succeeding and growing within the accounting industry. I have continually been surprised that depending on how much you want to achieve, it can be done in many different ways.” Favorite book: “I recently finished ‘Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Playbook of Silicon Valley’s Bill Campbell,’ which was a really great read. I’ve read several classics along the way, but this book in particular has excellent practical applications for me and where I am today.”

E KEN UDENZE Managing partner of the Arizona practice // Deloitte // E

144 ABL | Nominate at

In June of 2020, Deloitte named Udenze as managing partner of its Arizona practice, succeeding longtime leader Jonas McCormick. He brings 28 years of experience, specializing in public- and private-company reporting matters and M&A transactions. While still maintaining his client service responsibilities, Udenze oversees strategy, operations and talent for the Arizona practice. Attraction to industry: “I knew a few accountants and finance specialists growing up and always was curious about a career in financial services. My interest then became focused as I learned more about the services provided by major accounting and consulting firms and that is when I pivoted to a career in one of the big firms.”

professional services // ADVERTISING

A MATTHEW CLYDE President and founder // Ideas Collide // Clyde began his creative career at the age of 19 when he received the Sundance Institute Young Writer’s Award. In 2005, he launched his own firm, Ideas Collide, with offices in Phoenix and Portland. Ideas Collide serves clients worldwide including international brands in hospitality, technology, consumer goods, healthcare and education. Attraction to industry: “I was inspired by storytellers: Spielberg, Spike Lee, Hitchcock. I loved great storytelling and movies. My career started writing scripts. Through industry connections, that led to creating stories for brands and influential leaders. I appreciate every challenge and opportunity and I’m grateful to be creating in this industry today.”


B MARIANNE GUENTHER CEO // BIG YAM, The Parsons Agency, SNEAKY BIG Studios and Guenther is the CEO of BIG YAM, The Parsons Agency and SNEAKY BIG Studios – sister companies under Bob Parsons’ YAM Worldwide. With a layer of blue locks peeking out from under her edgy bob, Guenther is not your typical CEO. Today she heads up both the full-service marketing agency and production studio, applying strong leadership and a relentless passion for her staff and businesses. Best decision: “Taking a leap from the medical field where I practiced as a pulmonary physician assistant into marketing. This change took my investigative and customer/patient skills into the business world, which helped me solve problems there and took me out of my comfort zone. As a result, I expanded my skills.”



C CHRIS JOHNSON Partner, CEO, president // LaneTerralever // Johnson leads LaneTerralever in helping local, national, and global companies leverage integrated strategy, public relations, advertising, and marketing to grow their brand and drive desired results. Attraction to industry: “I love diving into different businesses, learning how they work, and diving into the most complex problems they have with a unique, outside perspective. What continues to surprise me is how many of the common struggles businesses have are the same across extremely diverse industries and models.” Surprising fact: “I’ve been coaching recreational and club sports for more than 15 years. It’s important to me to make the most of the time I have with my kids, and I love the opportunity to shape young lives through sports over the years — some of the best time I’ve spent.”




Lavidge founded his namesake agency in 1982 and has grown it to one of the largest full-service marketing firms in Arizona. His career spans over 35 years and includes two of the country’s largest and most respected advertising agencies — Bozell & Jacobs and Foote, Cone & Belding. Mentors: “My parents. They taught me many life lessons, including the importance of continuous learning. Harvey Mackay. He has taught me to always remain relevant and positive.” Attraction to industry: “Although it can be stressful at times, advertising is never boring, plus it has exposed me to many different industries and companies. The biggest surprise is the speed of our industry change.” Surprising fact: “I was a plump kid until age 16, until I decided I needed to take care of my health to get the most out of life.”

E MIRJA RIESTER Principal and chief strategic officer // RIESTER // Riester is co-owner of RIESTER, one of the largest independently owned digital marketing companies in the western United States. RIESTER is listed among Forbes’ “Top 100 Global Ad Agencies that Know Social Media and Google. Personal strengths: “I spent my childhood competing in German national gymnastics, which taught me incredible discipline and competitiveness. I have also always been extremely curious to learn about social sciences and behavior change which led me into a research-based career. These personal qualities have enabled me to help drive client successes at RIESTER.” Professional advice: “People interested in entering the marketing industry today must be very flexible, highly educated, multi-disciplinary, enjoy ideation and be proactive thinkers. And they must be willing to work hard.” 146 ABL | Nominate at

MEDIA // professional services

A AMY LINDSEY Publisher // AZ Big Media // Lindsey is one of the most accomplished media sales executives in Arizona. As publisher of AZ Big Media, she oversees a 35-year-old media company that produces eight magazines, 10 businessthemed events, and a news website that attracts 2 million readers monthly. Prior to her current role, Lindsey was advertising director at the Phoenix Business Journal and advertising director at the Arizona Republic, where she was a two-time member of the President’s Club for Gannett. As a former small business owner herself, Lindsey utilizes that experience and her vast knowledge of the local market to effectively consult businesses and help them achieve their goals through advertising, marketing, and event participation and sponsorship.


B DEAN DITMER President and general manager // 12 News //


Ditmer has been president and GM of 12News since January 2017. He began his career at WKEFTV and WHIO-TV in Dayton, where he was an Emmy-nominated sportscaster. He serves on the Endowment Board of ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism. Personal strengths: “I think spending most of my time in sales has taught me the value of versatility in my communication style. In my industry, to lead you have to connect with all types of people from different generations and walks of life.” Prized possession: “Autographed Cincinnati Reds jersey of the Big Red Machine — Rose, Bench, Morgan, Perez, Concepcion, Griffey, Foster, Geronimo. I love baseball. It reminds me that I was blessed to follow the greatest team ever as a wide-eyed 10-year-old. It takes me back every time I look at it in my office.”



C LINDA LITTLE President of the Phoenix Market // iHeart Media // During her 20-year career, Little has become known for using a combination of broadcast, digital and event marketing assets to create and execute marketing solutions that drive results. Since becoming market president in 2015, she has created a community impact initiative called #iHeartPhxProject, which incentivizes her team to get involved in the community and support causes that are important to them. Professional advice: “Never stop learning. Our industry has changed dramatically with digital and social media adding to the complexity of reaching consumers and getting your message heard. My advice is to never remain in the past, focus on new ways to integrate media and keep learning to stay ahead of your competition.”

D STEVE STRICKBINE President // Times Media Group // Strickbine grew up in the Valley and attended Arizona State University. As a CPA, he ran a small accounting practice before entering the publishing business. Today, he is the president of Times Media Group, the company he founded in 1997. Times Media Group publishes several community newspapers and magazines throughout the Phoenix and Tucson metro areas. Professional advice: “Recognize that where some see crises, others see opportunities. While there may be new ways to publish information, there has never been, nor will there ever be, a substitute for the truth. Don’t confuse editorial commentary for facts and news. Editorial commentary is entertainment. Facts and news are foundational principles — the true undergirding of any democracy.”


E SCOTT SUTHERLAND Senior vice president and market manager // Bonneville Phoenix // Sutherland versees all operations for KTAR, Arizona Sports and ESPN 620. Sutherland joined Bonneville in 2005 after 10 years with CBS Radio/Chancellor Media. He serves on several Phoenix nonprofit boards, including Greater Phoenix Leadership, ALS Association of Arizona, the Cronkite School of Journalism at ASU and the Arizona Broadcaster’s Association. Attraction to industry: “I love the many different facets of the business. The biggest surprise is the continual change in technology.” Favorite book: “My favorite business book is ‘Good to Great.’ I love the concept of Level 5 Leaders who are able to ‘mix humility with professional will’ and also the concept of ‘first who, then what.’” Surprising fact: “I was born and spent my grade school years in Alaska.” Nominate at | ABL 147

professional services // BUSINESS BROKERS

A JIM AFINOWICH Managing partner // IBG Fox & Fin // Afinowich has more than a quarter century of successful experience in M&A advisory and business brokerage. Afinowich has managed and supervised over 500 transactions. A nationally honored industry leader, Afinowich has served as an expert witness and developed/ presented classes for regional and national trade associations for nearly 20 years. Mentors: “My parents. My father taught me an unstoppable work ethic. My mother taught me to pay attention to detail and empathy for others.” Attraction to industry: “After owning and selling several businesses I found I liked bringing people together, doing transactions and learning about different businesses. I am most surprised by how predictable some people are and how unpredictable others are.” B

B MICHAEL DINAN President and CEO // Dinan & Company // C


Dinan has been an advisor in M&A and private equity transactions for over three decades as founder and CEO of Dinan & Company, LLC. Additionally, he is a managing partner of the Dinan Co-Investment Funds – a series of committed capital private equity co-investment funds. Prior to founding Dinan & Company in 1988, he was employed by Young, Smith & Peacock, Inc., where he was involved in mergers and acquisitions, private placements, valuation analyses and other securities-related transactions. Mentors: “Bob Dylan, Milton Friedman and Jack LaLanne – for their artistic, intellectual and athletic accomplishments. Life needs balance.” Favorite book: “‘Think and Grow Rich,’ by Napoleon Hill. ‘Patience, persistence and perspiration make an unbeatable combination for success.’ ‘Nuff said.”

C JEFF PAVONE Principal // Commercial Plus // A lifelong entrepreneur, Pavone is the owner of Commercial Plus Group and Amplify Car Wash Advisors. Under his leadership, Commercial Plus quickly scaled to a market leader at the forefront of M&A advisory, real estate brokerage, and financing for the car wash industry, completing complex transactions for some of the most well-known and widely respected car wash chains in the country. Leveraging his long-standing relationships with owners and operators, Pavone partnered with car wash veteran Bill Martin in early 2020 to launch Amplify Car Wash Advisors to address the evolving needs of car wash owners and operators. Professional advice: “I recommend focusing on becoming an expert in a certain area as opposed to generalizing or stretching yourself too thin. Find your niche or specialty.”

D BILL TOOLE Principal and certified Main Street business broker Sunbelt Business Brokers of Phoenix //


Toole’s passion is helping businesses drive outstanding results. With more than 31 years as both an executive and entrepreneur, he has a unique perspective on leading teams and companies towards achieving long-term success. Toole served as chief operating officer for the last five years of his 31-year career with an international organization headquartered in Arizona and held various leadership positions before settling into his role as an executive. Toole was responsible for all aspects of operating this industry leading chain which was home to over 150 locations and 3,500 team members in the United States and Mexico.

E CHUCK WIMMER Owner and designated business broker // Business Brokers of Arizona


148 ABL | Nominate at

Wimmer is a highly recognized business broker with many years of experience and competency. Having owned 11 businesses himself, Wimmer learned the ins and outs of several industries. Today, Wimmer works as the owner and designated business broker at Business Brokers of Arizona, helping other entrepreneurs see their dreams come true. He was named Business Broker of the Year by the Arizona Association of Business Brokers. Personal strengths: “My strong background in sales training and management allows me to relate to business owners in many ways. Developing connections with my clients gives them the security they need to be confident in their business decisions.”

professional services // BUSINESS INSURANCE



President and partner // Bennett & Porter Insurance Services Bennett has more than 25 years of experience in insurance and as founder of Bennett & Porter, where he helps clients prosper and build financial wealth and security, Bennett spearheaded multiple mergers and acquisitions and has won several awards. His vast knowledge of business led the Bennett & Porter team to be one of the most successful, privately-held insurance and wealth management firms in Arizona. As co-founder of BusyKid, the leading chores and allowance app where kids earn, save, spend, and invest their allowance, Bennett is driven by a passion to help families and their kids prepare to successfully face the financial realities ahead of them. Professional advice: “Have integrity. Be honest in all your dealings and demand integrity from the ones you do business with. Your word is your bond. Remember, what people do with you, they will do to you. Surround yourself with high-quality individuals who make you want to be better than the person you were yesterday. And never, ever stop learning.” Personal strengths: “I attribute grit and loyalty to my success. Show me someone with no experience, but who has grit and loyalty and it’s game on.”


As a purpose-driven leader, Bill offers his unique visions, broad experience and wealth of knowledge to all he comes into contact with while focusing on the positive impact he may have upon key constituents – MJ associates and their families, clients, partners and the community. Role model: “My father, Michael M. Bill. He introduced me to this industry and has been a coach, role model and mentor my entire life. I continue to lean on him for industry insight and business advice. Even in retirement, he provides continuous support to me and the MJ team as the firm has grown from a two-person start up, which he founded nearly 60 years ago, to the bold, innovative firm we are today.”

150 ABL | Nominate at

professional services // BUSINESS INSURANCE


GALLAUGHER President and partner // Toro Insurance Group

Gallaugher founded Toro Insurance Group in 2018. Because of his unorthodox style and nearly a decade of brokerage experience, he built a strong reputation as a significant player and consultant in the industry, but don’t mistake confidence for arrogance; such confidence is needed in an agency protecting what matters most. “Young, scrappy and hungry,” like Alexander Hamilton, Gallaugher strives to improve the game of risk called insurance. Attraction to industry: “The main attraction comes from the fact that insurance provides me an opportunity to leave a legacy positively impacting people and companies. Insurance serves a higher purpose, offering me the connections to make the world better by helping people survive and even thrive during some of life’s difficult moments.” Surprising fact: “I lived in Bozeman and Missoula, Montana; I belong in the mountains and forests. My goal is to own a sizable ranch where I can toss on a cowboy hat, step into a pair of boots, and momentarily escape the city-life hustle to unwind and work on pointless projects.”

JEFF DOLLARHIDE President, CEO, and managing partner MassMutual Arizona

Dollarhide, CFP, CLU, CLTC, leads MassMutual Arizona, headquartered in Scottsdale. He also holds the title of general agent to MassMutual Arizona, a general agency of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company, a Fortune 500 company. Upon appointment as general agent in 2000, Dollarhide was the youngest general agent in MassMutual company history. Personal strengths: “A strong desire to help others. I have always believed that putting others first and doing what is in their best interest 100 percent of the time is the most important trait that anyone can possess. If all we do is help people get what they want and need, everything else will fall in line. The sense of accomplishment that I get from helping and giving — improving others’ lives — is a major motivator for me.”

152 ABL | Nominate at


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professional services // BUSINESS INSURANCE


SCHMITTLEIN President & Chief Executive Officer // CopperPoint Insurance Companies // Schmittlein joined CopperPoint as President and CEO in 2016 and has been leading the company through a diversification and expansion strategy to realize the vision to be a top-tier regional commercial insurance company. CopperPoint has an expanded line of insurance products and a growing ten-state footprint in the southwestern U.S. Schmittlein is also very active in the community and serves on the board of directors of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, and the advisory board of the Arizona Chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Professional advice: “Risk management/insurance is an exciting career with so many opportunities and career paths. The industry is experiencing rapid change with tremendous innovation and transformation, providing many possibilities for people entering this business today. I would encourage you to get exposure and learn all facets of insurance - underwriting, claims, product management and distribution. This is a great time in the insurance industry to make an impact.” Personal strengths: “Here are the things that have helped me the most: It’s important to be inquisitive and ask ‘why.’ I practice the old adage of ‘trust but verify.’ Also, think ahead to the possibilities rather than the limitations.”

MARK HESTER Senior vice president AssuredPartners

Hester has worked in the insurance industry for more than 40 years and is actively involved in the community. Role model: “My father, Lynn Hester. His honesty and love of people paved the road for my career. I tried the best I could to follow his footsteps.” Attraction to industry: “Insurance protects people and property from unforeseen losses. I enjoy helping people and businesses manage risk.” Favorite book: “The Bible is the book that has guided me in my adult life. I wish I would have read it earlier.” Surprising fact: “I love teaching and playing golf with my grandchildren. They think I hit the golf ball a long way.”

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Give your business a whole new level of protection. Founded in 1925, CopperPoint Insurance Companies is a western-based super regional commercial insurance company and a leading provider of workers’ compensation and commercial insurance solutions. We take pride in providing best-in-class service and building strong relationships with our agency partners and customers in every local community we serve.



professional services // BUSINESS INSURANCE


CEO // Lovitt & Touché, A Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC Company A visionary with more than 40 years of experience in the insurance industry, Touché serves as CEO of Lovitt & Touché, A Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC Company. Founded in Tucson, Touché was responsible for expanding the agency to the Valley in 1995. He grew the Tempe office from six employees to more than 100, establishing the brokerage’s position as a leader in Arizona and the Western region. Role model: “My father, Carlos Touché, is among my greatest mentors. His pioneering spirit and approach to relationship building left an indelible mark. He immigrated to the U.S. from Mexico at just 14 years old, committed to fulfilling the American Dream. The fortitude he instilled helped me expand the agency’s presence, even amid adversity.” Attraction to industry: “Most people outside insurance think it’s an industry focused on facts and figures. But, at its heart, insurance is about people. Even after a lifetime in the business, this relationship focus keeps me highly engaged and fuels my passion for the work I do every day.”

RICHARD USHER Principal // Hill & Usher Insurance. Bonds. Benefits. //

Usher founded Hill & Usher, an Arizona-based independent insurance and surety agency in 1995 after a 25-year career in construction, starting as a carpenter’s apprentice, winning a “Golden Hammer” award, then building a commercial specialty contracting business and into leading the American Subcontractors Association of Arizona as its president in 1989. Attraction to industry: “My father told me, ‘follow a path where wisdom and longevity are rewarded and from which you never have to retire.’ In construction, short term projects have limited opportunity to build recurring revenue. The insurance industry challenged me to stay curious, learn and lead while I maintained a construction people connection.”

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professional services // CYBER SECURITY

A BRIAN BLAKLEY Consultant // Cosant // Blakley is an ex-farm boy from Ohio who couldn’t take the gray skies and cold winters, so in 1988 he headed west to Phoenix. Driven by a passion for building something from nothing, Blakley has started, built, grown, sold and exited several IT and information security firms over the last few decades. Attraction to industry: “The world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil – it’s data. I was attracted to information security because of the pervasive demand for data protection. After spending years in the industry, the most surprising element is the lack of genuine and authentic leadership in the information security field.” Surprising fact: “The summer in between 8th grade and 9th grade I grew six inches. Of course, that’s back when I had a head full of hair.”


B ORI EISEN Founder and CEO // Trusona // Eisen has dedicated his life to fighting online crime. He is the founder and CEO at Trusona. Prior to Trusona, he founded 41st Parameter, which was acquired by Experian in 2013. Eisen is often quoted by industry insiders, and receives numerous invitations to keynote industry events and conferences. In his free time, he volunteers with Thorn, the digital defenders of children. He founded Ball to All, a charity that donates free soccer balls to children who have never had one. He is a founding member of Security Canyon – Arizona’s Cyber Security Coalition. Industry outlook: “The security world will start moving away from passwords, especially as the number of breaches per day increase. The industry will need to adopt new ways to keep their businesses and their customers secure.”


C NICHOLE MINICE Managing director // Protiviti // Minice is a managing director in Protiviti’s internal audit and financial advisory practice and the Phoenix office market lead. She has more than 18 years of audit experience in the consumer products and services sector, helping clients to understand and develop ways to manage risks effectively and maximize efficiencies. Attraction to industry: “Every day presents a new challenge and no two days are alike. Early in my career, I thought that I would ‘outgrow’ or otherwise tire of this work, yet I still find myself motivated, happy and more fulfilled than ever.” Surprising fact: “I am an avid off-roader. I grew up off-roading and even met my husband on the jeep trail. Our favorite family outings with the kids most often include our jeeps, UTVs and quads with the woods or sand dunes as the backdrop.”

D SEAN MOSHIR Co-founder, chairman and CEO // CellTrust // Moshir is an internationally recognized cybersecurity visionary and software innovator who pioneered the multi-billion dollar patch management industry, which now secures over 90 percent of enterprise IT systems around the world. A serial entrepreneur, he successfully established multiple global software companies here in Arizona (PatchLink in 1999 and CellTrust in 2006) attracting more than $40 million in investment and venture capital to Arizona. Attraction to industry: “I was originally attracted to computers by games and then the human and machine interface fascinated me. How information is processed and how you can be at several places at the same time in cyber space.”

E JASON PISTILLO President and CEO // University of Advancing Technology // A disrupter in higher education and a notable leader in the Phoenix area, Pistillo has created a tech/education environment envied by many. He mixes an eclectic technology background, with a love for leadership and the community. In his tenure, UAT has been transformed into a one-ofa-kind, elite, private university that features world-class degree programs in a technology-rich campus environment. Mentor: “Ken Blanchard, leadership author. It’s amazing how quickly Ken forms cohesive teams from total strangers. Ken wasn’t afraid to say something taboo and he wore his beliefs on his sleeve. That fearlessness helped me form my own outlook on management, and truly understand and embrace the power of servant leadership.” 158 ABL | Nominate at


professional services // HUMAN RESOURCE

A MARCHELLE FRANKLIN Director of human services // City of Phoenix // Franklin manages a $95 million budget and leads over 375 employees as City of Phoenix Human Services Director. She joined the City of Phoenix in 2002 and prior to her current role, served as director of the Phoenix Police Department Community Affairs division, deputy director for community development and government relations at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport and separate roles as chief of staff for the Mayor and City Council. Professional advice: “Be self-aware and authentic, share power and develop people to perform as highly as possible. Be an aggressive listener, give your undivided attention in the moment. Look people in the eye and recognize that individuals are ‘human beings’ first and labels (i.e. employee) second.”



B MICHELLE GRAY Co-owner and managing partner // Integra HR Consulting Gray has dedicated over two decades in human resources. She holds her SHRM-CP and PHR certification. Her passion goes beyond the basic fundamentals of the field including continuing education and community outreach. Personal qualities: “Being true to yourself and be humble. Believing that strength, perserverance, and integrity will get you to your goals. I’ve never taken anything I’ve learned for granted and I’m always willing to go above and beyond. These qualities have continued to help me grow in my profession and build trust from others.” Professional advice: “Learn everything you can about the various areas of HR. Be part of an HR network and build trusting relationships with other HR professionals. Volunteering your time will bring amazing opportunities.”


C DENISE GREDLER CEO // BestCompaniesAZ // Gredler is a thought leader in employer branding, workplace culture and community improvement, best known for helping to create large-scale workplace awards programs, including Arizona’s Most Admired Companies and Top Companies to Work for in Arizona. Best decision: “After reaching a vice president role leading the first Arizona company to achieve Fortune’s 100 Best Companies status, I gave up the corporate life to start BestCompaniesAZ to better our community through designing employer award programs and connecting employers and job seekers. As I reflect on the past 18 years, it’s humbling to see the impact we’ve had on hundreds of employers, thousands of employees and countless members of our community who experience the benefits of a great place to work culture.”

D MICKI SCHROEDER Founder and CEO // Trilinear HR Consulting & Business Solutions // Schroeder brings with her decades of Human Resource experience and successful business acumen in both private and public sector employment, specializing in federal and state compliance, HR technology integration and varied levels of recruitment. Attraction to industry: “The ability to make a huge and positive impact on lives. Be it offering a new career path, taking corrective action resulting in both business and individual employee success. Even when a company or individual decides to not go in the suggested direction or take an opportunity as provided, I know that someone will eventually be effected great opportunities or that whole companies will be able to focus on success while we take care of potential compliance concerns.”


E SHANNON TAYLOR Director of talent acquisition // Republic Services // Taylor leads the talent acquisition department, which is currently made up of 70 talent acquisition professionals responsible for over 13,000 hires annually throughout Republic’s operations in 41 states and Puerto Rico. Taylor is also responsible for the company’s talent acquisition strategy, processes and oversees all recruitment technologies and vendor relationships. Additionally, Shannon sits on the board for the Arizona SHRM State Council. Attraction to industry: “What attracted me the most to the waste industry was the people at Republic Services. From the moment I walked through the doors of the building until today, it has been an absolute pleasure. The complexity of the business was a complete shock but a very pleasant surprise.” 160 ABL | Nominate at


Arizona is the BEST because of YOU. Validating and Elevating the Best Companies in Arizona to Work for. Arizona's #1 Platform for Connecting Employers, Job Seekers, and the Community.

professional services // PUBLIC RELATIONS A ANDREA AKER CEO and president // Aker Ink PR & Marketing // As the founder of Aker Ink PR & Marketing, Aker is known for her perseverance, honesty and results-driven approach. She has helped companies of all sizes break into new markets and achieve exponential growth. The former journalist – with a bachelor’s in journalism from University of Arizona and a master’s from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism – is lauded for her mastery of messaging and knack for resolving complex communication challenges. Role model: “My parents instilled an incredible work ethic at a very young age, which has fueled the successful growth of Aker Ink and laid the foundation for my mentoring style. They also taught me the importance of punctuality and follow though – two fundamental tenets of effective client service and leadership.”


B JENNIFER KAPLAN Founder and CEO // Evolve Public Relations and Marketing Kaplan is a familiar face in the Valley. She is a native of Phoenix and prides herself on knowing and understanding the dynamics of the community and the deep rooted relationships she has established. Connecting with her clients and the ability to understand their needs has led to her success. She approaches her clients as an extension of their team in order to create the ownership and passion their clients expect. Mentors: “I’m inspired by entrepreneurs. I love hearing their journey and the zig zags that got them to where they are, what challenges they experienced and how they navigated their way to achieve their goals! I’m fortunate to work with many companies that I look to as role models and mentors as I watch how they become successful.”



C BETH MCRAE President // The McRae Agency // McRae oversees The McRae Agency with 30-plus years of experience. She specializes in strategic planning, PR, publicity, social media, online relations and marketing in various industries, including retail, franchises, consumer products, and business-to-business industries. She has worked with clients including Google, Sprint, Sunny Delight, Red Bull, CBRE and KB Home, including franchises such as Massage Envy, as well as numerous smaller companies. Attraction to industry: “I studied journalism and marketing in college and PR is a fusion of those areas. I realized I loved its combination of business and creativity. I am surprised that I can constantly reinvent myself after celebrating 25 years in 2020 with my agency and that I can weather anything.”


D CATHY PLANCHARD Global president // Allison+Partners // Planchard is a global president of Allison+Partners, a marketing communications firm with over 500 employees across North America, Europe and Asia. She drove the formation and launch of the firm’s integrated marketing offering, encompassing research, content strategies, creative, digital and analytics. She is an industry thought leader in influencer engagement strategies and multichannel storytelling. Attracton to industry: “I’ve always loved marketing communications - it’s the perfect mix of analytical and creative thinking. Agency life in particular is never boring; I may be working on an automotive client, rethinking an event for a digital format, fundraising for COVID-19 research or talking about CBD, all in the same day.”

E JOSH WEISS President // 10 to 1 Public Relations // A

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Weiss is an industry veteran with over 20 years’ experience in PR and crisis communications. He believes that it takes 10 good things to be said about a company to equal one bad impression. Weiss believes in this philosophy so strongly that he named his company 10 to 1 Public Relations upon its launch in 2012. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to the stability (compared to my early career work in radio and politics) and opportunity to remain creative. What surprised me is that no matter how many times a storyline repeats itself, there are still opportunities to be creative while still utilizing past best practices.” Surprising fact: “Through high school and college, I owned and ran a successful mobile DJ company. I used to teach line dances to kids at bar and bat mitzvahs nearly every weekend.”

professional services // DIGITAL MARKETING

A BRIAN COLLING CEO // Colling Media // Colling is an Arizona-raised graduate of ASU and started Colling Media, a lead-generation advertising agency that has been nationally recognized by Inc. 5000 as one of the fastest growing private companies. Professional advice: “You gotta start to start. Just like everything in life, you’ll learn the most by doing. From working on the client side, to an advertising agency, find your passion in the industry and dive in. The advertising industry changes quickly so what you may be learning today could be the next industry shift in the future.” Personal strengths: “My drive for delivering the best results possible, my belief that the advertising industry was flawed and could be improved, my love for meeting and connecting with people and my ability to hire people much smarter than myself.”


B TYLER FARNSWORTH Founder and chief growth officer // August United // Farnsworth is passionate about telling incredible stories, building and leading award-winning teams, and helping brands connect with the people they serve. He has deep experience developing innovative strategies for a diverse group of organizations spanning various industries. Specialties include influencer marketing strategy, event planning and management, team leadership, digital strategy, social media strategy, video strategy and creation, business development, sales and sales management. Attraction to industry: “I’m on a crusade to rid the world of boring marketing. Humans are wired for stories. I’d love to help tell yours.”


C SCOTT KAUFMANN Managing partner // Highnoon // Kaufmann has a bachelor’s degree in marketing and finance and a master’s degree in real estate development and is the humble recipient of awards such as SeedSpot’s “Mentor of the Year” and Arizona State University’s “Sun Devil 100.” Mentors: “My parents. It’s cliche, but true. My father taught me to be entrepreneurial and take smart risks. My mother taught me to be frugal and that many things in life are a negotiation. Each of these concepts have proven critical in my career.” Favorite book: “It’s a tie between ‘The Hard Things About Hard Things,’ by Ben Horowitz; and ‘The Speed of Trust,’ by Stephen M. R. Covey. I’ve spent the better part of my career studying business management, innovation and organizational leadership and both of these have gems of wisdom and inspiration.”

D STEPHANIE OLSEN Principal // ReThinc Advertising // Olsen began her career as a local sales assistant at two of the local broadcast television stations here in Phoenix. She later spearheaded the digital marketing efforts for a national agency in Scottsdale before co-founding ReThinc Advertising in 2008. Attraction to industry: “Honestly, I thought I was going to be in video production before I started my career. The agency world was a foreign language to me, but I loved the idea of working for a company whose purpose was to grow other businesses. I can truly say that our success at ReThinc is based on our clients’ success, and that’s a great thing to work towards everyday. I am in an industry that undergoes constant change, so I’m never surprised nor am I ever bored.”

E ALEXI VENNERI Co-founder and CEO // Digital Air Strike // Venneri is co-founder and CEO of Digital Air Strike, the leading social media, intelligent messaging, and digital engagement company that helps thousands of businesses internationally increase consumer response and conversions in digital and social media environments while generating measurable ROI. Venneri has led the company to 300 percent growth in four years. It now employs 170 people and has four office locations around the U.S. Personal strengths: “I am always inspired by finding solutions to challenges and ‘ordering off the menu’ to do things that other businesses are not. In a technology start-up, you have to think differently, do more with less and always be willing to innovate and change while putting your clients’ best interests at the center of everything you do.” 164 ABL | Nominate at



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professional services // WORKFORCE PLACEMENT

A PAUL BOCA CEO // Corporate Job Bank Personnel Services // Boca has been president and CEO of both Corporate Job Bank Personnel Services and Professional Search Associates for almost 30 years, building the company into the No. 1 locally owned staffing company in Arizona. He participates on many business and civic boards. Professional advice: “It’s always about the people, not the technology or the systems we use for tracking searches. It’s having people who work for you that love helping people.” Source of pride: “I’m proud to have built this company to the No. 1 locally owned staffing company in Arizona.” Surprising fact: “I have a great love for clothes. Believe it or not, this love started back when I sold shirts and ties door to door in the 1970s.”



B DEANNE DESAUTELS President and CEO // Accounting & Finance Professionals // As founder of Accounting & Finance Professionals and Staff-Logic, Desautels has more than 19 years of recruiting, staffing and human resources experience. In 2010, she was the recipient of the Republic Media award for “Giving Back to the Community.” Professional advice: “The only way to get ahead is by working hard and continually learning along the way. Passion for people is the key in staffing and recruiting. Your goal needs to be connecting and helping people make the right choices for them in their career, which will guide them to happiness.” Away from work: “My children are my favorite hobby. They are my greatest achievement. I love taking them to local events and supporting our community.”

C KATHLEEN DUFFY President and CEO // Duffy Group // Duffy is an entrepreneur and thought leader whose recruiting career spans nearly four decades. She spent eight years honing her skills at a boutique executive search firm before founding Duffy Group, Inc., in 1991. Helping individuals find joy in their work is her life’s mission and it’s why Duffy Group is one of the nation’s most respected recruitment firms. She is a graduate of ASU and the recipient of numerous awards, including the Athena Business Woman of the Year. Mentors: “At 16, my grandmother immigrated to the United States from Ireland and put herself through nursing school. My mom, also a nurse, was a leader in migrant health education and ministered care to migrant children in Arizona. Both of them exemplify leadership, doing whatever it took to be successful.”

D TRAVIS LAIRD Regional vice president // Robert Half // Laird is the regional vice president for Robert Half, the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm. Laird oversees the Accountemps, OfficeTeam and Robert Half Finance & Accounting divisions throughout Arizona. He has more than 13 years of staffing industry experience. Attraction to industry: “There is nothing more rewarding then helping someone find a job or make a transition in their career. After 15 years in the staffing industry, I am still reminded every day that the work I do has a meaningful impact on someone’s life as well as mine. Whether that’s helping an individual find work after being laid off, offering career advice or mentoring a recent grad getting ready to enter the workforce — it’s always rewarding.”

E KAREN VANDEHEI President and CEO // Accurate Placement // Vandehei co-founded Accurate Placement in 1996 and earned her Certified Temporary Staffing Specialist from the National Association of Personnel Services in 1997. She began her recruiting career in 1994 and has built Accurate Placement from the ground up by developing cutting-edge systems. Personal strengths: “My attention to detail and developing strong policies and procedures has proven critical in our growth and success and serves as a guide to deliver consistent results. As business technology changes rapidly, I find it imperative to keep cutting edge practices and technologies at the forefront. I regularly work ‘on’ the business and not just work ‘in’ the business to research and analyze new trends for searching out the best candidates for our business partners.” 166 ABL | Nominate at




real estate // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK


Here’s how the commercial real estate sector will navigate the complex scenarios brought on by the pandemic By ERIN THORBURN

Disruption” has often been used to convey a shake-up in the commercial real estate industry. Usually, this infers the emergence of a change or a new trend. In 2020, however, commercial real estate didn’t so much experience disruption as it did an abrupt interruption. The commercial real estate industry was clearly impacted by coronavirus. Despite being hit hard, like many other industries, the industrial sector of commercial real estate sustained a healthy market position with global increases in demand for eCommerce and supply chains. According to Larry Downey, vice chairman of Tenant Advisory Services for Cushman & Wakefield, the aftermath of the pandemic will result in long-term changes in the office market. Some companies will allow workers to permanently work from home (WFH). However, many companies have successfully developed a blended schedule where employees alternate workdays between being in the office and WFH.

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COVID accelerated a trend that was already emerging, the resurgence of the suburban office market. Millennials, the largest population of workers, are starting families, purchasing homes and moving to the suburbs and they want to work closer to home for shorter commutes. Additionally, CRE companies have embraced the adversity brought on by coronavirus to create programs such as Cushman & Wakefield’s “Recovery Readiness” manual — a guide for landlords and tenants to navigate the complex scenarios brought on by the pandemic. For more insight into what to expect in various CRE markets coming out of 2020, AZ Business Leaders turned to Downey. Recognized as one of the Top Cushman & Wakefield brokers nationally and one of the top tenant representation brokers in the Cushman & Wakefield Phoenix office, Downey has extensive experience and knowledge about what comes next and how to prepare for it.

AZ Business Leaders: What trends do you anticipate we will see more of in commercial real estate as we approach 2021?

INDUSTRY EXPERT: Since joining Cushman & Wakefield in 2002, Larry Downey has been consistently recognized as a top producer in the Phoenix office and ranked in Cushman & Wakefield’s Top 100 brokers nationally and most recently being recognized as Top Tenant Representation Broker of the year 2012 through 2016 in the Phoenix office. (Photo by Mike Mertes, AZ Big Media)

Larry Downey: As we near the end of 2020 and move into 2021, I expect that companies will continue to evaluate their real estate options and what their commercial space will look like. Corporate occupiers will assess their office space, determining both short- and long-term needs. This could include more space, less space or keeping the same footprint but reconfiguring their office space based on physical distancing guidelines. Nominate at | ABL 169

real estate // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

“Arizona has the workforce, economy and the strength to bounce back from the challenges we faced in 2020.” — Larry Downey

I anticipate that one of the most important decisions businesses will make in 2021 and beyond is what they will need to do to keep their employees safe, comfortable and productive when returning to the workplace either part-time, full-time or a combination of both. A study by Gensler showed that 70 percent of workers want to spend the majority of their workweek in the office and only 12 percent want to work from home full-time. The same study identified millennials as the category of workers who most want to return to the office, many citing non-productive work-from-home situations, missing the person-to-person interaction with their coworkers and the desire for the corporate culture they experienced being in the office. Finding safe and successful ways to bring workers back to the office will involve working with industry experts from designers and architects, real estate and management professionals as well as cleaning companies and technical HVAC experts. There isn’t one singular solution and I expect a variety of occupancy plans will be considered by companies.

demand for eCommerce and the need for having a strong supply chain was critical to the thriving industrial market. As a Tenant Advisory office specialist, my team and I focused on helping clients with their leases working through rent relief and lease restructuring. We evaluated their lease terms and rents, helping clients right-size their office space (which included increasing space for some, downsizing for others and taking into consideration sublease options.) We negotiated landlord concessions and extended clients’ leases resulting in an overall financial savings for them. However, structuring lease flexibility with regards to square footage and terms was paramount during the process. Working with clients from day one, the goal was to address any challenges they faced when doors closed in March and then pivoting by assisting them formulate a plan using Cushman & Wakefield’s Recovery and Reentry Protocols to safely reopen their office space. That included finding options for them in a new location, subleasing and addressing issues within their existing lease contracts to formulate a lease restructure strategy.

ABL: The pandemic obviously impacted the commercial real estate industry. Can you share the challenges and victories produced brought on by COVID-19 within your industry?

ABL: What differences (if any) do you think Arizona may face, or alternately celebrate, in terms of the CRE outlook in the next year or two?

LD: While brick-and-mortar retail was the hardest hit sector, closures in the office market forced people to change how and where they worked. The multifamily sector saw challenges as record unemployment resulted in missed or delayed rents. The hardships for these three sectors triggered obstacles in the capital markets sector, especially in the office sector with rent relief and lease restructuring. The one sector that came out unscathed was industrial. The

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LD: Arizona has the workforce, economy and the strength to bounce back from the challenges we faced in 2020. The past decade has seen a strong concentration of urban office, industrial and multifamily development. Moving forward, I believe that we will see a resurgence of suburban office markets. Arizona has plenty of suburban land and office space offering numerous options in terms of locations for companies that are looking for “breathing room.” We have good

connectivity between the different cities in Arizona and the Western U.S., creating the option for companies to set up “hub and spoke” facilities in Arizona. We will see growth in occupierleased office space in mostly suburban submarkets taking advantage of less dense operations in a one, two, or three-story facility. And, it’s likely you will see build-to-suit opportunities becoming more prominent. The benefits to this model of multiple, smaller office locations allows workers to live closer to the office, reducing commuting times or reliance on public transportation, which saw deep declines in ridership due to fears of transmission of the coronavirus. It also aligns with the trend for prime-aged workers, millennials in particular, who have increasingly been moving to the suburbs to meet the needs of families.

ABL: What advice would you give someone seeking a career in CRE? LD: There isn’t a training manual for the commercial real estate brokerage industry; it’s a business that is learned over time through hands-on experience and is constantly evolving. For new professionals, I believe it’s incredibly important for them to be part of a team or at least have an experienced mentor who is willing to share their industry expertise, knowledge and time. That team/mentor will provide someone who can answer questions, talk through difficult scenarios and situations and provide a sounding board for questions. I think to be successful in a commercial brokerage, there are three traits that are vital: you have to be good with people, comfortable as a salesperson and able to invest your time into understanding the commercial real estate industry and the specific market and product type you work in.

real estate // ARCHITECTS A RICK BUTLER Principal // Butler Design Group // Early influencers: “I am fortunate to have come from an artistic gene pool. My mom, uncle, grandmother and grandfather were all creatively gifted. My integrity and work ethic were instilled in me by my father.” Professional advice: “My personal motto is to live life, have fun, and rub off on the people around you.” Surprising fact: I began my architecture career while in high school, then left college early to pursue my passion for architecture full time. While the ‘self-taught’ route doesn’t work for most people — and definitely can be a daunting path to achieving Registration in the profession — it worked for me. It challenged me to work harder, learn independently, and apply practical ‘street smarts’ to everything I did, every day.”


B SHERMAN CAWLEY President // Cawley Architects //


Cawley is a native Arizonan and has practiced architecture in Phoenix for 40 years. He is the president of Cawley Architects, Inc., a medium sized commercial firm focusing on delivering quality professional design services, primarily in the design-build commercial arena. Personal strengths: “Creating personal and professional relationships based upon trust is one of my admired qualities. I am appreciated for my ability to thoughtfully draw out both clients and staff regarding their goals. This quality coupled with strong organizational skills and personal drive have contributed to my personal and professional success.” Professional advice: “My advice to young architects is to absorb as much as you can from today’s rich architectural profusion.”

C SANDRA KUKLA President // DWL Architects + Planners // Kukla has been with DWL Architects for 20 years and succeeded Steve Rao as president in January 2020. She has worked on projects such as the terminals at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, among others. Kukla said her first real exposure to both architecture and aviation occurred during childhood, when she assisted her father, a retired Japan Airlines pilot, with constructing an aerobatic biplane in the family’s three-car garage. Industry support: “Sometimes it’s hard for people to recognize leadership in a person that’s much different than themselves. A male may not always recognize or see themselves in a young female working towards a goal in her own career, but (at DWL) they did. I think that that’s encouraging. It was very encouraging for me.”

D AJ THOMAS Principal // Corgan //


AJ Thomas serves as principal and Healthcare Sector leader based out of Corgan’s Phoenix office. Bringing over 20 years of architectural experience, Thomas joined Corgan in 2015. He oversees the development of Corgan’s national healthcare practice with a focus on thought leadership, growth, and client engagement. His experience includes all aspects of planning and design with an emphasis on hospitals, ambulatory care facilities and specialty centers of excellence. His credentials span both sustainability and evidence-based design, and he is one of 14 board certified Healthcare Architects (ACHA) in Arizona. Thomas is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington with a master’s degree in architecture.

E MARK TISCORNIA Healthcare market leader and principal Cuningham Group Architecture // D


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With more than 25 years of experience in all phases of the design and construction process, Tiscornia has developed a keen sense for managing risk, beginning with strategic master planning, and through the detailed design of over $2 billion in healthcare construction projects. Attraction to industry: “Like most architects, I began with Legos as a ‘gateway’ to design. Over the course of my formal education and career, I have come to the realization that our profession is so much more than just bricks and mortar. What we do makes a difference in people’s lives.” Favorite book: “The book that had the biggest impact on me as an architect was ‘The Fountainhead,’ by Ayn Rand. No other book speaks more successfully to the tension that exists between design and business and the struggle between the two.”

Valley Partnership: Your Premier Advocacy Group Valley Partnership advocates for public policies that advance the interests of the commercial, industrial and master planned real estate development industries. Our goal? To build a legacy for the future of development through educational events, leadership development programs, stakeholder engagement, and community action. We hope you’ll join us.

real estate // BROKER MANAGERS

A BRYON CARNEY Managing principal // Cushman & Wakefield // Carney has 35 years of experience in commercial real estate. He is responsible for the strategic planning and the day-to-day Phoenix operations, while leading over 230 employees and five business units including brokerage, asset services, debt and equity, valuation and appraisal and project development services. Attraction to industry: “I have been in the commercial real estate business for 35 years and I was first attracted to this business because of the people. They are smart, extremely self motivated, have the ability to establish strong relationships, competitive and work hard. I am most surprised by how much the industry has changed and evolved over the last five years, but it still manages to attract the same kind of person.”


B GARY GREGG Chairman // Cresa //



Founding Cresa’s Phoenix office in 1999, Gregg is a nationally recognized leader in the corporate real estate industry. Gregg serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors and on the Executive Committee for Cresa Global, Inc., as a Managing Principal of Cresa’s Phoenix office and leads one of the industry’s leading occupier representation portfolio account teams in the industry. Gregg and his team manage more than nine portfolio clients totaling more than 80 million square feet globally. Attraction to industry: “ The freedom to build my own company and practice without limitations.” Surprising fact: “Over the past several years, I have developed a love of photography. Not only does it serve as a creative outlet, it’s been a great opportunity for me to capture moments with my family.”

C PAUL KOMADINA Senior managing director and Arizona market leader CBRE //


Komadina oversees all aspects of CBRE’s Arizona business operations. Komadina drives the overall strategy across all lines of business. With a focus on building maximum advantage for clients, Komadina actively employs CBRE’s full-service platform to ensure strategic, integrated solutions for complex real estate objectives. Role model: “My dad. My entire life, he has impressed upon me the importance of working hard (put in the hours), being on time to everything, and always do the right thing even when it may be difficult.” Favorite book: “‘The Ride of a Lifetime,’ by Robert Iger. It has inspired me in many ways, but my biggest takeaways are the importance of communicating clearly and honestly to your team, having concise and actionable plans, and not being afraid to take calculated risks.”

D TERRY MARTIN-DENNING CEO // NAI Horizon // Martin-Denning is responsible for the overall strategy and success of the NAI offices in Phoenix and Tucson. She oversees all business lines for the firm, leading her team of commercial real estate professionals to consistently deliver high-quality results for the firm. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to CRE because it offered me an opportunity to learn something new and because each day brought different opportunities and challenges. I am surprised that the fundamentals and what it takes to be successful in this industry have not changed a lot over time. Relationships still rule.” Surprising fact: “I grew up hunting and fishing and am an avid outdoorswoman. I no longer hunt, but enjoy fishing in the mountain lakes of Montana.”

E BOB MULHERN Senior managing director // Colliers International of Arizona Mulhern possesses more than 30 years of industry experience, and has a successful track record managing brokerage, development and property management organizations. Mulhern is also co-founder and board president of all 22 Great Hearts Arizona academies, one of the premier charter school management organizations in the country. Role model: “My most influential role models impacted me earlier in life. My mom and dad (who were a loving and hard-working couple for my 11 brothers and sisters and me), my high school basketball coaches, and my college spiritual directors all helped mold me into the husband, father and leader I have become.” Favorite book: “I read the Bible daily. I find every page is filled with inspiring truth and wisdom.” 174 ABL | Nominate at

Your space drives your business

Cresa excels when it comes to using real estate as a strategic tool. We focus exclusively on occupiers, developing creative solutions to move your business forward. Through our global integrated services platform, we find businesses the space they need to work, create, build and grow. 2398 E Camelback Road, Suite 900 | Phoenix, AZ 85016 |

real estate // BROKER OFFICE A ANDREA DAVIS Owner and designated broker // Andrea Davis CRE // Davis incorporates engineering design to support a company’s’ commercial real estate vision now and in the future. For over 25 years, she has assisted developers, landlords, buyers, tenants and investors, representing both sides of the transaction, advising on leasing and purchasing. Attraction to industry: “Helping others and sharing knowledge is my life passion. CRE is adventurous, each day is different. A career in CRE offers inspirations such as puzzle solving, negotiations and innovative thought.” Surprising fact: “Coca Cola hired me to dance skate in Fukuoka, Japan, for three months. Four American girls performed roller-skating dance shows, eight times a day with four Japanese girls to demonstrate that the east and the west were united. It was a smash hit for the Japanese tourists.” A

B LARRY DOWNEY, CRE Vice chairman // Cushman & Wakefield // Downey is the only person in the Phoenix office of Cushman & Wakefield to earn the title of vice chairman. He is a founding member, past four-year chairman, and current Pursuits Committee lead of the company’s national Tenant Advisory Group, comprised of 700 tenant rep brokers. In 2019, he was invited to be a member of the prestigious Counselors of Real Estate organization. Downey has been involved in over 4,500 lease and sale transactions totaling more than 100 million square feet. Attraction to industry: “Commercial real estate allows me the chance to interface with companies and their decision-makers, assisting them with corporate occupancy decisions. Everyday there are challenges that afford me the opportunity to problem-solve and find solutions for clients.”


C JONATHAN KEYSER Founder // Keyser // Recently named The Commercial Real Estate Disruptor by USA Today, Keyser is the founder and thought leader behind Keyser, which is the largest independent commercial real estate firm in Arizona, serving thousands of companies globally across a wide range of industries. He is also the best-selling author of the book, “You Don’t Have to be Ruthless to Win.” Attraction to industry: “Growing up poor, I got into commercial real estate to get rich. Once inside the industry, I was stunned how cut-throat it was. I became ruthless because I thought that was what it took to be successful. Fortunately, I found a better way and built a firm around that.” Surprising fact: “I am the son of Christian missionary parents and spent my childhood in Papua, New Guinea.”

D SCOTT MAXWELL Managing principal // Cresa Global //


Maxwell’s management skills and transactional experience span 30 years within the commercial real estate industry. He is recognized as one of the top corporate real estate brokers in the Phoenix market. Role model: “My role model is my dad as he was the consummate gentlemen and a great leader in the financial services industry. My mentor was Jack Fields while at FINOVA. Jack allowed those that worked for him to grow and take on responsibility, while also taking on the risk associated with making difficult decisions.” Favorite book: “I am going retro and selecting Dale Carnegie’s ‘How to Win Friends & Influence People.’ It is a must read for people getting into business.”

E TODD NOEL Senior executive vice president // Colliers International Noel specializes in office and educational properties. As the national director of Colliers’ Education Services Group, Noel leads a national team of 20 professional advisors who understand and represent the varied real estate needs of educational companies and occupiers of educational facilities across the country. Attraction to industry: “Growing up, I knew I would be in no other industry as a profession other than real estate. What surprised me most about the industry is how vital relationships are and a close second is the critical importance of effective communication.” Surprising fact: “I ride horses with my two daughters — although when they jump poles, I walk my horse and watch them in awe and amazement.” 176 ABL | Nominate at



We are here for you. Always have been and always will be. Colliers embraces its role in providing essential services. Clients of every type and size rely on us to help them navigate the disruptions brought on by this pandemic. Because of this, we never closed our doors. Instead, we figured out how to provide uninterrupted, creative and professional solutions to the challenges of the new “Business Unusual” world. Our clients face challenges requiring immediate attention and teamwork. When the country shut down, we worked harder and smarter, finding safe ways to serve businesses. We have been here…and we always will be. Visit to learn more.

Accelerating success.

real estate // BROKER RETAIL

A SCOTT ARCHER Managing partner, designated broker // Barclay Group // In 1990, Archer expanded Barclay Group to Arizona and built the Western Region. For more than two decades, Archer has been involved in all aspects of each venture including site selection and development, financing, construction, marketing, and establishing and maintaining Barclay Group’s strong business relationships. Under Archer’s leadership, Barclay Group’s Western Region has developed more than 45 commercial projects, totaling more than six million square feet. Prior to returning to his native state of Arizona, Archer was a principal at Trammell Crow Company in Tampa, Fla. Archer has an MBA with an emphasis in finance and real estate development from Southern Methodist University. He is the designated broker for Barclay Real Estate Services.


B ED BEEH Executive vice president and managing principal // SRS Real Estate Partners // Beeh is the executive vice president and managing principal for SRS Real Estate Partners and is responsible for implementing marketing strategies, project analysis, and lease negotiations, as well as managing the day-to-day operations of the Arizona office. Favorite book: “‘Pillars of the Earth’ is a historical novel by Ken Follett depicting 12th-century builders and the challenges of constructing a cathedral which spanned over a century of hard work. It is an amazing comparison to present day and the challenges we face as our real estate industry evolves.” Surprising fact: “I have an eclectic taste in music. Some of the recent concerts I have attended are Bruno Mars, Dierks Bentley, Eagles, David Gray, Ray LaMontagne, Pink, Kid Rock and Justin Timberlake.”



C NATHAN CARDON Founding principal // Cardon Commercial // Cardon is the founding principal for Cardon Commercial specializing in the sale of shopping centers, retail investments, multifamily, and office/medical properties throughout the United States, with a focal point on the Southwest and West Coast markets. Attraction to industry: “The thing that drew me to this profession was the investment side of commercial real estate. I saw first hand how making the right investment choices affect peoples lives each and everyday and I wanted to be part in changing peoples lives for the better. There have been no surprises.” Surprising fact: “While in college, I took a job as a telemarketer selling light bulbs. The crazy thing about it was that, unbelievably, I sold a lot of light bulbs.”

D ARI SPIRO President // ORION Investment Real Estate // Spiro has been involved in the real estate industry for more than 20 years and has been a party to hundreds of transactions for more than $1 billion of total consideration. Prior to founding ORION Investment Real Estate, Spiro worked for 12 years for a national real estate firm, where he won numerous awards for achievements in sales and outstanding service. In 2016, Spiro received the RED Award for Commercial Real Estate Broker of the Year. Trend to watch: “Adapting to constant change. Gone are the days that you can rely on doing the same thing the same way for a decade or more. If you are not adapting and reinventing yourself, your business, your marketing or your property, you will be passed by and passed by quickly.”

E ALAN ZELL President // ZELL Commercial Real Estate Services, Inc. // Zell is the principal and designated broker for ZELL Commercial Real Estate Services, Inc. Zell started the firm in 1977 to manage and lease a portfolio of five shopping centers and has expanded operations to include property management and/or leasing representation of more than 40 shopping centers comprised of more than 4 million square feet. Zell has leased several hundred thousand square feet of space to national, regional and local retailers, served as a consultant for numerous client requirements, and served as an investment broker for the sale and/or acquisition of over thirty shopping centers for clients. Zell earned a B.S. in finance from the University of Rhode Island and an MBA from Boston University. He has a Certified Shopping Center Manager (CSM) designation from ICSC. 178 ABL | Nominate at


real estate // BROKER INDUSTRIAL

A LEROY BREINHOLT President and designated broker // Commercial Properties, Incorporated Breinholt has over 32 years of commercial real estate and industrial market experience. While CPI continues to grow under Breinholt’s direction, his focus is on the market changes and growth that lie ahead. As an Arizona native, Breinholt takes pride in his home state. Attraction to industry: “For some reason, I have wanted to be in real estate since I was a child growing up in Phoenix. I always loved selling things from door-to-door candy sales as a child, to selling odds and ends as a teenager, to buying, fixing and selling cars as a teenager and during the first 3-4 years in the real estate business. I love the strategy of putting people together to ‘attempt’ to create a win-win situation and have both parties leaving happy and fulfilled.”


B PAT FEENEY Senior vice president // CBRE // C

Feeney has knowledge and experience in the leasing and selling of industrial properties, land sales, build-to-suit projects, investment property sales and landlord and tenant representation throughout the Phoenix industrial market. Entering his 35th year in commercial real estate with CBRE, Feeney has brokered over 3,500 transactions for over 250 million square feet. Attraction to industry: “As a restaurant owner in town in the mid-1980s, I heard many unbelievable stories at the bar from customers in commercial real estate. I told my wife that if half of what they were saying was true, I had to get into that game. The rest is history.” Favorite book: “‘Atlas Shrugged,’ by Ayn Rand. I read it every 10 years or so, and each time, my interpretation of the book changes because of life experience.”

C JERRY MARRELL Principal and designated broker // Lee & Associates // Marrell specializes in the representation of landlords and tenants specializing in the leasing and sales of industrial buildings in the Metropolitan Phoenix real estate market. Marrell’s extensive knowledge of Metropolitan Phoenix market is complemented by thorough analysis and marketing skills involving tenant relocation, tenant expansion, lease negotiations, market analysis and property marketing. These qualities, along with a strong work ethic, have enabled him to become a respected presence within the market. Marrell has completed over 2,000 transactions totaling over 19,833,826 square feet valued in excess of $738 million. B

D AARON NORWOOD Vice president // LevRose Commercial Real Estate // Norwood began his real estate career in Arizona in 2005 and has concentrated on investment sales and leasing in the Phoenix metropolitan real estate market. Norwood specializes in industrial and office properties, with knowledge and experience that serve his clients in specialty properties, including the automotive, church, and nonprofit property sectors. Since joining LevRose Commercial in 2012, Norwood’s clients have included great companies such as Arizona Medical & Injury, Chirofit, New Horizon Community Care, XCEL Roofing, NowRX, Copperstate Fire, Mirage Limo, AZ Oasis Pool Company, All State Insurance, Sand Highway Rv and TAG Insurance Group.

E RANDY SHELL Principal and designated broker // Shell Commercial Real Estate D


180 ABL | Nominate at

Shell has over 28 years of local commercial real estate expertise, which began shortly after graduating from Michigan State University. Armed with a degree in business finance, he moved to Scottsdale where his career in commercial real estate flourished. In 2002, Shell decided to form Shell Commercial, a full-service commercial brokerage company. In 2005, Shell, along with a few partners, started acquiring land and developing multi-tenant flex industrial properties in the McDowell Mountain Business Park, where Randy’s office is today. From Shell’s broad perspective as Broker, Owner, and Developer, he can professionally consult his clients on their commercial real estate marketplace needs.


As the global leader in commercial real estate services, CBRE delivers world-class consulting and advisory services to all of our clients in Portland and beyond. Our unparalleled local market insight, integrated services and proven expertise continue to unlock the power and potential of real estate for everyone we proudly serve.

Phoenix Office

Tucson Office

602 735 5555

520 323 5100

real estate // CONTRACTORS

A MARTIN ALVAREZ, SR. CEO // Sun Eagle Corporation //


Alvarez was educated at ASU as a business management major. He spent two years in the U.S. Army and one tour in Vietnam in 1969. Alvarez is the founder of Sun Eagle Corporation, a general contractor/construction manager. Sun Eagle has built 10 million square feet of schools, office buildings, industrial buildings and fire stations. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to general contracting because I wanted to contribute to building structures that will be serving the community for 100 years. After 42 years, I am grateful our family is part of history in Arizona.” Favorite book: “‘The Art of War,’ written by Sun Tzu, is the model book for me and our company. I taught a class at ASU in 2002 on minority business and the book was mandatory reading.”

B SCOTT BJERK President and CEO // Bjerk Builders // Bjerk moved to Arizona in 1979 from Sioux Falls, S.D., and started Bjerk Builders in 1987 at the age of 27. He manages the day-to-day operations of the business and is also involved with sales and estimating. Personal strengths: “I have always been an ambitious person and driven to be the best. I believe the ‘get it done’ attitude has helped with respect to getting projects completed and delivered to meet the client’s expectations.” Professional advice: “I was taught at a young age that the customer is always No. 1. I still believe that today and would hope that anyone starting a business would heed that advice.”




C MIKE BONTRAGER Vice president and general manager // Alston Construction // Since 2003, Bontrager has expanded several organizations through market introduction, sector growth and high-performing cultures. Bontrager utilizes his 35 years of industryspecific experience to secure new work, maintain industry partnerships and manage the overall performance of Alston Construction. Professional advice: “Take on the difficult assignments and push yourself out of your comfort zone. If you want it bad enough, you’ll succeed. View problems as good things. Leave a trail of satisfied customers and find a specialty — something you do better than anyone else. This makes you valuable to the customer and your company.”

D CASEY CARTIER President and CEO // Jokake Construction Services // With 25 years in the construction industry, Cartier joined Jokake Construction services in 2012. Named CFMA’s Executive of the Year and recognized as an Arizona Business Leader in 2017, Cartier has also been recognized as an “Innovative Business Leader.” Role model: “John Graham, Mike Davis, Milt Elmer, and Jerry Barnier have all been tremendous mentors. The strength of the experience has been that each represent different aspects of the industry, but all taught me to look for perspective in every decision. Every deal will never be considered successful unless everyone has the opportunity to be successful from their perspective. This has been instrumental in my career, teaching me patience and an ability to ask the ‘right’ question.”

E BARRY CHASSE Founder // CHASSE Building Team // Chasse is the founder of CHASSE Building Team, a general contractor with offices in Tempe and Tucson focused on the market sectors of K-12 education, higher education, nonprofit, retail, multifamily housing, healthcare, office, and industrial spaces. In 2019, Chasse, a past president with the Arizona Builder’s Alliance, was named Construction Executive of the Year by the Valley of the Sun Construction Financial Management Association and to the Sun Devil 100, an honor he earned again in 2020. Surprising fact: “When I finished my term as the Arizona Builder’s Alliance president, I dressed as Marilyn Monroe and serenaded the incoming president in front of 500 people. Years later, I earned my first CHASSE client after he Googled me and we laughed at my Monroe image, which popped right up.” 182 ABL | Nominate at

Building Arizona for 42 years

ď‚­Building our economy ď‚­Serving our employees and the environment since 1978

real estate // CONTRACTORS A KIMBERLY DAVIDS General manager // The Weitz Company // Davids is the general manager for The Weitz Company, with over 20 years of experience in the construction industry. She is the first female to hold this position in the company’s 165year history. Attraction to industry: “An eighth-grade geometry assignment. We had to draft our home to scale on letter sized graph paper. I was a bit of a math geek, so the real world application had me intrigued. I got an A+ with a comment. ‘Is this a career option for you?’ written at the top of the paper. When choosing a major for college, I quickly realized that I didn’t have the creative skills to be an architect, but rather the curiosity about the how and why of building. Hence, the degree of civil engineering from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana.”

B ANDREW GEIER Executive vice president // Layton Construction //


Geier is an executive vice president at Layton Construction, a position he was promoted to at the age of 29. Since then, Geier has focused his attention on Layton’s Arizona construction activities, with an emphasis on business development, preconstruction, strategic planning and client relationships Role model: “My parents were my role models in life and my career. They had incredible work ethics, were smart, compassionate and had a great sense of humor. I’m grateful to inherit their work ethic and compassion and I have utilized humor throughout my career to keep the atmosphere light and fun.” Surprising fact: “I spent seven wonderful years at Kansas State University before graduating. During my tenure there, I was a sixth-year sophomore at one point.”

C KATIE HAYDON PERRY Executive vice president // Haydon Building Corp // Haydon Perry was born in Winnemucca, Nevada, but grew up in Phoenix, attended Xavier College Prep for high school, ASU for a BS in accountancy, and Thunderbird for her MBA in global management. Haydon Perry’s studies and travel helped establish her global mindset, laying the foundation for her approach to leadership. In 2010 she joined the Haydon Building Corp team, bringing her global insight to establish a strong company culture at Haydon. Attraction to industry: “The construction industry is truly amazing — to witness things being built from nothing. I love that I get to be a part of the process. What has surprised me the most is how accepting a male-dominated industry is of a woman leader; they see their daughters in me and are proud to have me by their side.”

D GRETCHEN KINSELLA Arizona Business Unit leadership team // DPR Construction // In less than 18 years, Kinsella has established herself as a passionate leader at DPR Construction and has been part of the Arizona leadership for the last five years, managing many aspects of their business including healthcare mega projects, client relations, and internal operations. Attraction to industry: “From an early age, I excelled at math and science. I knew I wanted to be a builder when I went to Iowa State. Now, I have the pleasure of building people, teams, and a large business - while still being able to drop into any job site when I need a good ol’ construction fix.” Surprising fact: “I have not voluntarily (i.e. without peer pressure or guilt) watched a movie in over 10 years. It drives my husband crazy, but I can’t sit still for that long.”

E DAVID SELLERS President and CEO // LGE Design Build // Sellers has been involved in over 22 million square feet of development and has shaped LGE’s team and process to what it is today. In 2014, to further strengthen the design build mission, Sellers started LGE Design Group, LGE’s architectural arm. He has won several industry awards, including NAIOP general contractor of the year and NAIOP TI general contractor of the year. Sellers also co-founded Creation, which is an investment platform for real estate, hospitality, and alternative investments. Role model: “Hands down, my dad. He was an amazing human. He was a true role model on how to handle yourself in business and in your personal life. If Dave Sr. were around today, I think he would be floored by the amount of passion and talent our team has.” Surprising fact: “I’m a cancer survivor.” 184 ABL | Nominate at






The HUB, Goodyear AZ, 793,000 SF

To us, there is design-build and then there’s LGE Design Build. Having been in business for over 26 years, we’ve learned a few things about how architects, estimators and contractors work together.

480.966.4001 |

real estate // CONTRACTORS


President and CEO // Caliente Construction // Bergman is co-founder of Caliente Construction Inc., one of the top 50 largest commercial general contractors and the sixth-largest women-owned business in Arizona. Committed to her community, Bergman is past president and current board member of the Arizona Builders Alliance, Greater Phoenix Leadership Member, TGEN ambassador, one of the top 50 Most Influential Women in Arizona, and a Construction Finance Management Association (CFMA) Executive of the Year. Attraction to industry: “I never dreamed I would be running a commercial general construction company. After my husband’s passing, I decided to keep the doors open with help from the great employees who remained. Surprisingly, after 15-plus years, I still love the industry and the ongoing challenges that provide opportunities for growth.” Favorite book: “‘The Alchemist,’ by Paolo Coehlo. This beautiful story of perseverance reaffirmed a way I have always lived my life — following my heart and intuition without giving up. Over time, it leads to happiness and, without fail, success.”

JOHN LARGAY CEO // Wespac Construction

Largay leads Wespac Construction with nearly 30 years of contracting experience. His dedication to client service and quality construction sets the standard for all Wespac staff members. Throughout his career, Largay has focused his efforts on proactive construction strategies and sound management techniques. Professional advice: “My advice would be to have consistency, answer your phone when it rings, by kind and sincere, smile and work hard every day. Some would say work or live every day like it’s your last. I say smile like it’s your last and treat people with unconditional respect.” Surprising fact: “Some people call me ‘Farmer John.’ I grow a lot of my own produce and preach about the importance of a sustainable civilization.”

186 ABL | Nominate at

real estate // CONTRACTORS

JAMES MURPHY President and CEO // Willmeng Construction //

As president and chief executive officer, Murphy leads Willmeng Construction with vision, focus, commitment to clients, and an understanding that the best outcome is achieved when surrounded by an experienced, proactive and driven team. Willmeng Construction, in business since 1977, specializes in ground-up and tenant improvement projects and has most recently built a reputation as one of Arizona’s fastest growing, locally owned and operated building contractors. Personal qualities: “I’m wired to help and support others. Personally, in the community, at the office, and on behalf of our clients, that is the single element that resonates the most. I always feel that you can do more and that continues to drive me.”



President // CORE Construction // Steffen is the president of CORE Construction, a locally and nationally ranked top construction management firm. He began his career 22 years ago in Morton, Illinois and has extensive experience in a variety of construction delivery methods, project types, and is a valuable resource to his employees and clients. Steffen is a strong advocate for servant leadership and he sets the example by always striving to support those around him. He graduated from Illinois State University with a degree in Construction Management. Role model: “I continue to come back to three people that have been a constant source of reliability, trust and wisdom. First would be my dad, second would be my father-in-law, and lastly our CEO. The one who serves is the greatest leader in the room. That’s the common denominator between them all.” Attraction to industry: “My grandpa built homes and I loved the idea of building tangible structures that stand for generations, and you can drive by and enjoy the fact that you had something to do with that.”

188 ABL | Nominate at


19 82

real estate // CONTRACTORS

ANGIE SCHMIDT CEO // SDB Contracting Services //

Schmidt has had construction in her blood for over 40 years. Her father, Dominic Spagnuolo, founded SDB in 1980. Since Schmidt became CEO, SDB has obtained the Women-Owned Business Enterprise certification from the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. In addition to corporate duties, Schmidt also leads the company’s philanthropic activities and community engagement programs. Role model: “One of my role models is Dominic Spagnuolo. He is not only the founder of SDB, but also my father, who formerly served in my position. He started this company in 1980, and he has always preached to me, ‘never give up and continue to change with the times.’ He also taught me that our employees are the key to our success, which is why SDB attracts and hires only the best.”

ROSS VROMAN Executive vice president and general manager Skanska USA //

Vroman is executive vice president and general manager of Skanska Phoenix, which is a project development and construction company that builds hospitals, stadiums, airports, corporate headquarters, bridges, etc. Role model: “My former boss Franck Vandeventer, who’s now retired, taught me the business. It’s not just about building, it’s about running a business and making money. He had a great business acumen. I also admire Dave Schmidt, the chief operating officer of Skanska. We have a great partnership – he’s very thoughtful and insightful. He manages Oregon, Washington, Arizona, and Texas.” Surprising fact: “I started by doing sheet metal and HVAC work for houses when I was 14.”


STEVENS President and co-founder // Stevens Leinweber // As a founding member of the executive team, Stevens is a familiar face for many of Stevens-Leinweber’s clients. He participates in initial communications with new clients in addition to overseeing individual projects, while managing other responsibilities that come with his role as the company’s president. He is also a registered architect with the state of Arizona, so he is frequently involved in the design management phase of clients’ projects. Stevens is originally from Michigan and came to Arizona to attend Arizona State University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a bachelor of architecture. He describes himself as a perfectionist who thrives on the “people part” of the work he does.

190 ABL | Nominate at

STABILITY VERSATILITY For nearly 40 years, Stevens-Leinweber Construction has served Arizona with the highest quality commercial construction. We’re proud of where we’ve been, where we’re going and the tremendous industry leaders we get to work alongside, day-in and day-out.

Congratulations to all of the 2021 Arizona Business Leader honorees!



real estate // DEVELOPERS

A BRANDON DILLINGHAM Managing director // Hines // Dillingham serves as managing director for Hines, overseeing commercial real estate development for the firm in Arizona and New Mexico. Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment firm founded in 1957 with a presence in 214 cities in 24 countries. The firm’s current property and asset management portfolio includes 512 properties, representing over 223 million square feet. Historically, Hines has developed, redeveloped or acquired 1,348 properties, totaling more than 444 million square feet. Prior to joining Hines, Dillingham held positions on the development team at Macerich, a best-in-class national shopping center REIT. He is a graduate of James Madison University with a major in finance, and holds an MBA from Arizona State University.


B SHARON HARPER Chairman and CEO // Plaza Companies //


As chairman, CEO and co-founder of Plaza Companies, Harper oversees all facets of company operations, including the ownership, development, leasing or management of nearly 10 million square feet of Arizona medical office properties, senior living facilities and bioscience/ biotechnology centers. Role model: “I have been greatly influenced by admirable people, including my parents and my husband. Having someone who unconditionally believed in me is incredibly empowering.” Favorite book: “‘Character is Destiny,’ by John McCain. It is truly character that defines everything about a person. This is a book of heroism and is about leaders who believed their values were the power that directed their lives. These stories are a constant inspiration for me.”

C HEIDI KIMBALL Senior vice president // Sunbelt Holdings // Kimball is a recognized leader in real estate development, management and investment throughout the Southwest since 1979. Kimball’s tenure with Sunbelt began in 1982, and during that time she has gained experience in entitlements, project management, property management, leasing and development. She has worked on acquisition and disposition of various land holdings and buildings, as well as development of masterplanned communities and commercial projects. Sunbelt has developed beloved residential communities including McDowell Mountain Ranch in Scottsdale, Power Ranch in the East Valley, Vistancia in the Northwest Valley and Marina Heights in Tempe. Kimball is responsible for Sunbelt’s asset management and brokerage activities, and serves as the firm’s designated broker.

D DAVID KRUMWIEDE Executive vice president // Lincoln Property Company //


Krumwiede oversees all development, acquisition, disposition, debt/equity financing, joint ventures, receivership and property management for LPC in Arizona, Nevada, Utah and New Mexico. This includes a property management portfolio of approximately seven million square feet and a pipeline of development including the Class A Grand at Papago Park Center and Union office projects and the ultra-modern Park303 industrial building. Mentor: “My career has been influenced by many smart and generous mentors, but the one closest to home is my brother, Craig. He has achieved great success, balancing industry leadership with an admirable heart for the community. He’s also become my partner on two Class A projects – Waypoint and Union.”

E GARY LINHART Owner // WestHawk Capital // Linhart is the founder and owner of WestHawk Capital, a platform incubator for emerging real estate managers, based in Phoenix. Linhart was also a founding partner of ViaWest Group, a Phoenix-based commercial real estate investment and development firm where he led the capital markets activity from 2003 until early 2020. Attraction to industry: “Real estate’s attraction comes from the breadth of its demands, including a great combination of: strategic thinking; investment analysis; understanding consumer, business and demographic trends; and relationship development.” Surprising fact: “I am (or at least was 20 years ago) fluent in Japanese, having studied it in college and having lived in Japan for a total of 3.5 years during and after college.” 192 ABL | Nominate at






Over the test of time, Bjerk Builders has consistently proven their unparalleled dedication to excellence, by completing client projects on time, within budget and with the utmost level of quality.

480.497.2300 • fax: 480.497.9610 • License B1-088897

real estate // DEVELOPERS A MOLLY CARSON Senior vice president, market leader Southwest Ryan Companies US //


With nearly 20 years of experience, Ryan Carson offers unique insight into the varied aspects of real estate development leadership. She has shown consistently strong performance in delivering several high-profile projects over the past years for customers such as Amazon, Go Daddy, McKesson, and Farmers Insurance. Role model: “My mother and father worked hard to instill a strong set of values within me and my seven siblings: Love each other, have faith in God and do the right thing. Share your blessings, ask for help when you need it, work hard, play hard.” Attraction to industry: “Family. The opportunity to work for a company that embodies my values and the opportunity to positively impact communities.”

B ROBERT MCNICHOLS General manager // Daedalus Real Estate Advisors McNichols has been a commercial and corporate real estate broker, manager, developer and executive since 1971. He is currently general manager of Daedalus Real Estate Advisors, master developer and general manager of Longbow Business Park & Golf Club. McNichols is also a community volunteer and board member in the community, business, real estate, higher education, tourism and golf industries. Daedalus provides investment, development and communications consulting to corporate real estate clients. Personal strengths: “Dedication to quality and commitment to change.” Professional advice: “Learn the facts. Be firm and fair. Share your expertise with others in an unselfish way and reap the rewards of your experience.”


C LAURA ORTIZ President, managing principal // Evergreen Devco // Ortiz has more than 25 years of experience in real estate development and oversees Evergreen’s retail developments, including acquisitions, strategy, leasing, financial underwriting and development and construction management. Evergreen has developed more than 450 retail and apartment projects in the Western U.S. and Ortiz has been a leader in Evergreen’s growth and evolution. Attraction to industry: “I landed in this industry by luck and fate, not knowing anything about development until I started at Evergreen. I loved it from the start, have loved it ever since, and am still pleasantly surprised that I continue to find so many ways to grow, learn and advance the company each year.”

D JIM SWANSON CEO // Kitchell // Swanson is CEO of Phoenix-based Kitchell, an employee-owned building company with business in the western and Southwestern United States, encompassing commercial contracting, development, construction management, facilities management and HVAC wholesale supplies. Swanson is deeply involved in the community and serves on the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), Teach for America Phoenix Chapter and Greater Phoenix Leadership (GPL). He is also a member of the executive committee for the American Contractors Insurance Group. Personal strengths: “Humility, empowering others and never being afraid to ask questions. ‘Know what you don’t know’ is a favorite mantra of mine.”

E CATHY THURINGER Managing director // Trammell Crow Company // Thuringer leads the Development and Investment Group for TCC and High Street Residential, TCC’s residential subsidiary, in Arizona. With over 30 years in the real estate industry, her experience encompasses leading all phases of development from site acquisition through project disposition with a focus on creating exception outcomes for TCC and its stakeholders. Thuringer’s experience includes more than six million square feet of development projects. Attraction to industry: “What attracted me to the industry is the creativity associated with real estate development that transforms a vacant land site into an asset that provides value for all the stakeholders involved.” 194 ABL | Nominate at




real estate // ENGINEERS

A TIM CRALL President and CEO // Entellus Inc. // Crall joined Entellus, a civil engineering, land surveying, and construction services firm, over 17 years ago. Crall blends strategic vision with a pragmatic, disciplined approach to business execution; an unwavering focus on customer service; and a commitment to maintaining a healthy culture and a talented workforce. Attraction to industry: “One of the more surprising aspects of being an engineer over the past 35-plus years is how much more productive we are in any given day than when I first started in the industry. Technology has transformed our ability to optimize designs and implement them.” Surprising fact: “I have Type O negative blood, which can be used universally by people of all blood types in emergency situations. Because of this, I try to donate blood multiple times a year.”



B GREGG CREASER President and CEO // Speedie & Associates // Creaser is CEO and Geotechnical Division manager for Speedie & Associates, providing consulting engineering services for public and private entities. As a senior partner of the firm, he has been integral to the firm’s continued growth and stability. His business philosophy is rooted in a firm belief in client engagement “beyond the project.” Professional advice: “A few pieces of advice: Work hard like you own the place. Hopefully, you will be given the opportunity to own a piece of the pie. Use that smartphone you own to call someone, don’t just text, email, IM, etc.” Personal strengths “Honesty and transparency. Plus willing to do whatever it takes to keep clients happy. When you fail to keep a client happy, own up to your failure, apologize and ask to be given another shot in the future.”

C ANNEMARIE HAENFLER Principal // ACS Engineering Group // Haenfler holds ATTI and radiation safety certifications, initiated the laboratory certification and expanded the company’s capability and capacity to successfully serve on federal, municipal and ADOT projects. A strong work ethic, strategic thinking and absolute commitment to achieving goals characterize her management style at ACS Engineering Group, which offers geotechnical engineering, materials testing and special inspections to the construction industry. Haenfler currently serves as chair for the ADOT DBE Taskforce. She is also qualifying party for the company’s AZROC license. A

D GREGORY HAGGERTY CEO // Dibble Engineering // As CEO, Haggerty is responsible for the direction and strategy of the firm. In addition, he has 24 years of civil engineering experience on multi-discipline projects. Originally from Maine, Haggerty moved to Arizona in 1995. Role model: “Without question, my father had the biggest impact on my life, but Rich Perry develops people. Kent Dibble lives integrity, and Steve Rex operates in excellence. I hold each of them in the highest regard.” Attraction to industry: “Our industry raises quality of life. It is foundational to economic development and it has long-term impacts on every person in our entire society. Early on, I was surprised by the level of discipline required to get infrastructure right.”


196 ABL | Nominate at

real estate // ENGINEERS

A RON HILGART Managing principal // HILGARTWILSON // As a founder and managing principal of HILGARTWILSON, Hilgart enjoys utilizing his 35-plus years of planning, engineering and construction management experience to add value to client’s projects, as well as to mentor and grow the professional staff at HILGARTWILSON. He is most proud of the growth and development of the firm from its initial staff of six in 2009 to over 160 professional team members today. Attraction to industry: “My interest started when working for my parent’s real estate company. I received my brokers license at the age of 18, but wanted to design and be an integral part of land development projects. Biggest surprise: They didn’t teach you how to deal with pandemics in engineering school.”



B STEVE NOWACZYK Principal engineer // Ninyo & Moore // Nowaczyk has 30 years of geotechnical engineering experience and 21 years with Ninyo & Moore. He has his bachelor’s of science in civil engineering from Michigan State University and a master’s in geotechnical engineering from The University of Michigan. Attraction to industry: “I’m attracted to being able to help design and construct projects like roadways, bridges, bridges, water treatment plants, and dams that help improve our overall quality of life.” Favorite book: “‘Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life ... And Maybe the World,’ by Admiral William H. McRaven. In the book, McRaven shares 10 life principles he learned that helped him overcome his challenges. I appreciate the way these principles can be applied and implemented to our everyday lives.”

C KARL OBERGH CEO and principal // Ritoch-Powell & Associates //


A graduate in civil engineering from Northern Arizona University, Obergh has been CEO and principal of Ritoch-Powell & Associates (RPA) since 2004. He is current chair of the board for CASS and president of Arizona Society of Professional Engineers (ASPE) state section. Role model: “My grandmother is 98 years young and has more spirit than most teenagers. She always pushed me to be a better person and go after my aspirations. She also taught me that ‘if you walk into a room smiling, eventually everyone will be smiling.’” Attraction to industry: “Spite! I was told by the head of civil engineering at NAU that I could never make it ... I accepted his challenge. Best thing I ever did, because I am in total love with my career and industry.”

D CHUCK REYNOLDS Senior principal // Terracon // Reynolds joined Terracon in 2006 as a senior geotechnical project manager primarily focused in heavy infrastructure projects. He assumed his current role as senior client development manager in 2012 with primary responsibilities in the Arizona and New Mexico markets. Reynolds has more than 30 years of experience on a wide variety of projects throughout the western United States. Personal qualities: “Being authentic, thoughtful and patient. These qualities have helped me professional and personally stay consistent with who I am, show openness and respect, and stay rational and present in dealing with other people. Patience for me is be certain enough of what I have set out to do and to keep going.”


198 ABL | Nominate at

real estate // ENGINEERS

A DAVID SKINNER Area operations manager and principal // HDR // Skinner is a professional civil engineer and serves as the area operations manager and principal for HDR in Arizona and New Mexico. Skinner has more than 27 years of experience as a professional civil engineer working for state, local, and federal governments on a number of civil infrastructure projects. Skinner also serves as the chairman of the board of directors for Arizona Forward and co-chair of the Transportation Committee for the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. Professional advice: “Find your passion and use it to guide your career choices. To be an engineer today requires a broad range of skills, but your passion for why we do the things we do will help you to excel in your career.”


B RYAN WEED President and CEO // Coe & Van Loo Consultants // Weed became president of CVL in January 2015, previously holding the title of executive vice president. He has more than 22 years of experience in planning, zoning, preliminary and final design, and construction documents in the hospitality, retail, residential, commercial, solar, and energy sectors. Weed directs his teams to think creatively and solve problems in ways that benefit agencies, communities, and clients. Professional advice: “Become a well-rounded engineer. Provide great design and recognize the client’s ultimate goals. Excelling in business development, managing a team, and delivering a great product for a client is the professional trifecta.”

C ELIJAH WILLIAMS President // EPS Group // Williams became EPS Group president in 2014 and is the head of its Public Works division. He has over 22 years of experience in transportation, utility and drainage engineering. He holds BSCE and MBA degrees from Arizona State University. Williams and his partners at EPS provide a full range of public and private infrastructure solutions to clients across Arizona and the Southwest United States. Attraction to industry: “I grew up the son of a general contractor. Working full-time on one his work crews each Arizona summer quickly taught me two things: first, I really like seeing things get built; and second, I don’t like pouring concrete in the Valley heat. So, I became a civil engineer. I can still be part of great projects, but without the field work.”


D MICHAEL YOUNG Principal and CEO // WOODPATEL // Young is responsible for the general operation of WOODPATEL. With more than 25 years of experience, including master-planned communities, site development projects and various public works projects, his experience in the engineering field is diverse, helping him to bring well-rounded solutions to client projects. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted very early in junior high by a friend’s father who was an architect. My original path was in architecture, but as I began the combined architecture and engineering program at Arizona State University, I found more passion for technical engineering.” Surprising fact: “I’m a descendent of Brigham Young. He is my great-great-great grandfather.”



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Ideas transform communities For more than a century, HDR has partnered with clients to shape communities and push the boundaries of what’s possible. Our expertise spans nearly 10,000 employees, in more than 200 locations around the world — and counting. Our engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services bring an impressive breadth of knowledge to every project. Our optimistic approach to finding innovative solutions defined our past and drives our future.

real estate // HOA S

A TODD DAVIDSON CEO // CCMC // A pragmatic servant leader, Davidson was named CEO in May 2020. Since joining CCMC in 2003, he has used his unique talents to connect people, purpose, and vision. Leading by example, Davidson collaborates with the team to grow others and build enduring partnerships with valued clients. Role model: “I was fortunate to grow up in a rural farming community, and my parents taught me work ethic, pride and the positive impacts of involvement and responsibility. Bill Snyder, Hall-of-Fame football coach, has also been a role model. His ‘16 Goals for Success’ inspire me professionally and personally.” Surprising fact: “You could say that I am a bit of a change junkie. I am much happier in the chaos of change than with the constancy of the status quo.”


B JOHN KEMPER President // FirstService Residential Arizona //


Kemper’s career includes over 22 years in the staffing and recruiting industry where he honed his leadership skills. After nearly five years in his current role, Kemper has transformed the industries largest HOA national brand into the local market leader where he oversees the evolution of FirstService Residentials client base and associate growth. Favorite book: “‘Mindset,’ by Carol S. Dweck. We often can shut ourselves off to great ideas and thoughts, so this book really helps me to focus on keeping an open mind about new processes, techniques or approaches. It also has taught me to appreciate the different views all of us have, which are shaped by our life experiences.”

C JEFF KELLER, CAE Executive director // Arizona Association of Community Managers


In October 2020, Keller was named executive director of the Arizona Association of Community Managers, a professional organization dedicated to promoting a positive understanding of community associations and the contribution of professional management services in the development and maintenance of well-managed neighborhoods. Attraction to position: “I have a background in association management and felt that AACM was an attractive organization that has strong members and generous affiliate partners. AACM is at a point where they can grow and expand and strengthen their voice for the HOA management industry and I felt it was a wonderful opportunity to lead AACM into their next chapter.” Surprising fact: “I am a Dance Dad. My daughters both dance competitively and it is a pure pleasure and joy to not only watch them dance, but to help them build props and to travel with them for competitions.”

D AMANDA SHAW President // Associated Asset Management As the president of AAM, Arizona’s largest privately owned professional community association management company, Shaw guides the company’s daily operations and long-term strategic planning and financial matters. Personal strengths: “Honesty, transparency and a strong work ethic have contributed to my success in the HOA industry. These qualities helped me to build trust and confidence with my company, resulting in my career apex as president and partner.” Professional advice: “The HOA industry requires a commitment to the best organization skills, the ability to handle sensitive issues with homeowners and following through on projects with excellent communication skills.” D

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AACM Members Are: • Knowledgeable, Trained and Certified • Committed to Professionalism • Held to the Highest Ethical Standards At the Arizona Association of Community Managers (AACM), we know your neighborhood is more than just a collection of homes. It's where your life takes shape. Sin Since 2003, AACM has been dedicated to improving the quality and professionalism of community management in Arizona. Our CAAM® education program is Arizona's only professional certification for community managers, and we are the state's leading information resource on HOA community management issues.

Visit to find out if your community manager is an AACM-certified member. Phoenix: 602.685.1111 Tucson: 520.334.2004 668 N. 44th Street, Suite 229E Phoenix, AZ 85008

real estate // HOA S


Founder, managing member // Vision Community Management Fisher moved to Phoenix in 1992 to attend college and started an accounting consulting practice, which he continued to grow while holding high-level financial positions with several Valley companies. In 2003, he purchased a small association management firm and rolled his accounting practice into that, forming Vision. Nearly 17 years later, Vision and its related companies have grown into one of the state’s largest and most respected association management service firms. Role model: “One of my earliest employers was Beti Ward, founder of American International Cargo. She instilled the value of treating employees as family and making what was important to them important to the company as well. She epitomized that you take care of clients by taking care of your own team.” Attraction to industry: “I joke that I fell into my industry accidentally when my neighbors elected me to the board before I even really understood what my HOA was or did. To this day, I remain in awe of how HOAs bring out the best in many, and occasionally the worst in a few.”


Founder and CEO // Associated Asset Management (AAM) Prior to founding AAM in 1990, Ziff gained significant experience working with leading financial institutions in the Phoenix metropolitan area, which eventually led her to establish her own community management firm. Her goal was to raise the bar in terms of integrity and customer service, which is evident in the quality of the firm.

204 ABL | Nominate at













real estate // REIT S

A WILL CREYER Vice president and director // Cousins Properties // Creyer joined Cousins in 2013 and currently serves as the vice president and director of Cousins’ Phoenix portfolio, in which he is responsible for leasing, property operations, investments, and business development. He has played a key role in all of the company’s acquisitions, dispositions, new developments, asset management, and corporate strategy. Professional advice: “Find time to build market and customer relationships and provide superior service excellence.” Industry outlook: “The market has benefited greatly from employment growth and its close proximity to top talent. We continue to see more tech companies make the move to Tempe and remain positive about Cousins position in the Sun Belt.”


B SCOTT PETERS Chairman, CEO and president // Healthcare Trust of America //


Peters runs Healthcare Trust of America, the largest dedicated owner and operator of medical office buildings in the U.S., comprising more than 24 million square feet of GLA, located in 32 states with nearly $7 billion invested primarily in medical office buildings. HTA was founded in 2006 and listed on the NYSE in 2012. This is the third real estate company he has grown and taken public; others included NNN Properties and Golf Trust of America. Personal strengths: “I am not afraid of taking risks. I come across a lot of people in my industry who play it safe, which is not necessarily a bad thing but it isn’t what is going to take you to the next level. I have always had a desire to be successful which helps drive me to push myself outside of my comfort zone and not be afraid of the challenge.”

C GLENN RUFRANO CEO // VEREIT // Rufrano became CEO of VEREIT, Inc. in 2015 and has since implemented a business plan to guide the company’s strategy. VEREIT is a full-service real estate operating company which owns and manages one of the largest portfolios of single-tenant commercial properties in the U.S. Since 2015, VEREIT has strengthened and diversified its portfolio, created an investment-grade balance sheet, and maintained strong and consistent leadership. Favorite book: “I have two favorite books, both biographies - ‘Team of Rivals,’ about Lincoln and ‘The Splendid and the Vile,’ on Churchill. Both books describe great men under unbearable pressure who responded in uncommon ways. Whatever the pressure I may feel cannot match up to theirs.”



Volk co-founded STORE Capital in May 2011 and serves as STORE Capital’s president and CEO. STORE, which was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 2014, is the third Arizona-based, NYSE-listed company Volk has led. Prior to forming STORE Capital, Volk co-founded Spirit Finance Corporation. Earlier, Volk served as president of Franchise Finance Corporation of America. Professional advice: “Spend time on our website and the websites of other companies in our business. Do some research to see if what we do has interest to you and do not hesitate to reach out to leaders directly. If you are in college, you can also start out with a summer internship to see if you like this business.”

E BEATRIX WAGNER Associate broker // Artisan Real Estate Group // Wagner moved to the U.S. from Germany and worked as a translator for Volkswagen before getting into real estate in 2003. Role model: “I’ve had some great role models, including Jameson VanNess, who got me started on real estate. He’s been in real estate for 20-plus years and has been very successful in buying properties at the auction, rehabbing and then selling them.” Attraction to industry: “What attracted me is the exciting and rewarding way of working with so many professionals from all over. Every transaction has its own challenge and that has been a lot of fun and very rewarding.” Favorite book: “One that does stand out is called ‘Mogadishu’ and it’s about a hijacking of a German airplane. The strength and courage of everyone on board inspired me to be a stronger and better person.” 206 ABL | Nominate at



real estate // OFFICE INTERIORS

A TAYLOR DAVIS SONOSKEY Senior designer // DAVIS // Davis Sonoskey discovered her desire to become an architect at a young age, drawing floor plans with sidewalk chalk. Her creative expertise spans many markets, including hospitality, mixed-use, offices, restaurants, high-end retail, residential and education. Attraction to industry: “The thing that attracted me most to design is the thing that continues to surprise me. I enjoy the puzzle-solving aspect of it. You’ve never had this exact client, with this exact building, with these exact constraints – now go solve it and make it work the best you can.” Surprising fact: “I’ve spent time in 21 countries on four continents and every single place has added a new angle or facet to how I see the world, how people live in it, and made me a better designer.”



B JILL HAMBLEN Owner // triARC architecture & design // Hamblen, AIA, is the co-owner of triARC architecture and design, based in Phoenix, Arizona. Hamblen, along with her business partner, Marlene Brandemuehl, began the firm in 2006 with the goal of creating a successful business while maintaining a work-family balance. Hamblen’s enthusiasm for meaningful design and her passion of helping others realize their dreams has resulted in the tight knit family firm that triARC is today. Attraction to industry: “My mom taught herself to be an ‘architect’ from studying blueprints purchased from the Sears catalog. Watching her led me to dream of becoming an architect. Starting college, I had to choose between law and architecture. Realizing arguing cases made me want to throw up, I chose architecture.”


C LUANN HOLEC Principal and founder // Thoma-Holec Design // Holec’s design career began designing marketing centers and model homes for homebuilders and developers. While lots of fun and rewarding, she always felt that something was lacking. Holec’s first senior living project was Las Fuentes in Prescott in 1996. Holec says that realizing she could change someone’s life through their environment, especially in the last years of their life, instantly defined her path. Obtaining a graduate certificate in gerontology from ASU enhanced her knowledge and enables her to expand her design practice to multiple states and Canadian provinces.

D BRAD KRAUSE President and founder // Krause - Architecture + Interiors // An Arizona desert dweller for over 30 years, Krause was raised in Chicago and influenced by strong ethics, culture and iconic buildings. Registered in 1993 and a member of AIA, IIDA, ASID and NAIOP, he has also served on numerous boards and presented many guest lectures. Attraction to industry: “I knew that I wanted to be an architect after my first drafting class in the eighth grade. From then on, I strived to learn, grow and collect as much knowledge as possible. After over 30 years, I am still learning. That is what I love about this profession.” Favorite book: “The most enjoyable books that I have read recently would be the ‘Bobiverse’ series by Dennis Taylor. These are science fiction at its finest — fast paced, intelligent, clever and full of humor.”

E BRAD WOODMAN Vice president and office director // SmithGroup // Woodman leads SmithGroup’s Phoenix and Denver offices, while spearheading the design, planning and construction of laboratories focused on biotech, biomedical energy, forensic and health science research. His most recent experience includes significant work for the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command at Pearl Harbor, and the Forensic Science Complex in Toronto, Canada.

208 ABL | Nominate at




USE 602.867.2200

real estate // OWNER OPERATOR

A MARTIN DE RITO CEO // De Rito Partners // De Rito formed De Rito Partners, Inc. in 1992. The company offers full-service retail brokerage operations, property leasing, sales and tenant representation. The company has 20 seasoned brokers exclusively representing more than 180 shopping centers and 60 national and local retailers. Recently, De Rito Partners Development has been redeveloping 1.2 million square feet at The Pavilions at Talking Stick (formerly Scottsdale Pavilions). Professional advice: “At the end of the day, you must be very persistent day in and day out. Look for solutions that benefit both parties and remember that every day is but a small life.”


B TIMOTHY FRAKES Senior vice president, development and acquisitions Weingarten Realty Investors //


Frakes joined Weingarten in 1994 as a regional leasing executive and opened the first regional office based in Phoenix. Frakes was promoted to regional development director in 2000, and in 2003, he was promoted to vice president/senior regional director of new development and acquisitions. In 2017, Frakes was promoted to senior vice president, new development and acquisitions and is responsible for all growth opportunities in the Western United States. Since 2003, Frakes has developed and/or acquired 41 shopping centers in five states. He graduated from the University of Arizona with a major in Finance. Frakes was successful in negotiating and acquiring projects such as 8000 Sunset, Scottsdale Waterfront, Stevens Creek Shopping center and other high profile projects.

C JAMES PEDERSON Chairman // Pederson Group // Pederson was born and raised in Casa Grande and graduated from the University of Arizona with an undergraduate degree in political science and a master’s degree in public administration. He formed the Pederson Group in 1983, specializing in the development and management of shopping centers. The company has developed more than 30 retail projects throughout the State of Arizona and has received many awards for design excellence from municipalities and industry groups. Personal qualities: “Never-give-up attitude. If one believes in something strong enough, a temporary setback is just that — temporary.” Professional advice: “Keep searching until you find that something you really enjoy. Once that’s found, find a niche where you can apply your unique skills.”

D MICHAEL POLLACK Founder, president and CEO // Michael A. Pollack Real Estate Investments // Michael A. Pollack Real Estate Investments is one of the largest independently owned commercial real estate companies based in Mesa. Pollack has personally been involved in over 12,000,000 square feet of real estate projects while the company and its affiliates currently own and operate over 3,500,000 square feet of commercial, industrial, and residential properties in Arizona, California, and Nevada. Attraction to industry: “I have always enjoyed being able to take a property that is an eyesore and making it aesthetically beautiful again. Redevelopment, for me, is not just about adding a new paint job to a property but renovating the overall appearance. The benefit of redevelopment is the positive impact it leaves on communities.”


E PAUL RHODES Executive vice president // Vestar //


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Rhodes, a founding principal of Vestar, oversees construction for its operations. Rhodes has been responsible for the construction of more than 95 shopping centers, in excess of 21.5 million square feet. Source of pride: “Development and construction of the Scottsdale Pavilions Shopping Center, now called The Pavilions at Talking Stick Shopping Center, the first Power Center of its kind in the Southwest, with in excess of 1.1 million square feet. What made this project so rewarding is it was built in conjunction with the Pima Indian Community and on the Pima Indian Reservation.” Surprising fact: “In the summer of 1978, I worked as a rough neck on an offshore drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico.”

Michael A Pollack President, CEO

real estate // SUBCONTRACTORS

A JAMES DINAN Owner, president and CEO // Bel-Aire Mechanical // Bel-Aire Mechanical was founded in 1986 as a full-service HVAC, mechanical and plumbing contractor and is now the largest private and locally owned signatory mechanical, plumbing and service contractor in the state of Arizona. Personal qualities: “As a child, my mother believed in the written word and all things written. She would always remind my sisters, brother and I that reading was the fundamental building block for all learning and knowledge. My father, on the other hand was a steadfast believer in numbers. He would tell us children that the answers to almost all problems were solved by arithmetic and mathematics. My love of reading and numbers have served me well in the mechanical construction industry.”


B BRAD GHASTER President and CEO // Ghaster Painting // Ghaster started Ghaster Painting while attending college in 1975. He painted apartment moveouts starting with one account and growing to multiple accounts while attending school. He got married and when the babies started to arrive, he began to paint full time, painting houses and then commercial work now for over 45 years. Role model: “Not to sound trite or super spiritual, but truly my role model for every area of my life is Jesus Christ.” Attraction to industry: “I didn’t choose painting. I think painting chose me. It was not an industry I wanted to pursue, but the opportunity was there so I took it. I am most surprised how easy it was to get into the business, but so hard to be profitable in it.”


C KEN GOODRICH CEO // Goettl Air Conditioning & Plumbing // Goodrich is a seasoned entrepreneurial executive with more than 30 years of experience in acquiring, integrating and developing HVAC, plumbing and contracting businesses. Goodrich started in the HVAC business as a boy, holding the flashlight for his father on late night calls. Today, he is focused on developing high-performance leadership teams with an emphasis on growth, process improvement, customer satisfaction and accountability for performance; building and monetized twenty-four companies throughout his career. Attraction to industry: “I was born into my industry. At 10, I worked with my dad fixing HVAC systems, I was the official flashlight holder. My dad passed away when I was in my 20s and that was when I took over the family business.”



D MIKE GREENAWALT CEO // Rosendin // Greenawalt has over 40 years of construction industry experience beginning his career as an apprentice electrician. He joined Rosendin in 2002 as a division manager in the Arizona office and grew the office and team, becoming vice president of operations. Attraction to industry: “I have always been someone who loves working with their hands and creating something. This industry gave me that opportunity to create something I can physically see and touch. I think the biggest surprise I have seen is the technology that we have and its influence on what we do.” Surprising fact: “I don’t golf. I’m a total motorhead – cars, boats, bikes. I can drive the heck out of a golf cart, but don’t ask me to swing a club.”

E DAVE JONES CEO // Midstate Mechanical // Jones started his career in the piping trade, and was able to turn the experience and knowledge he gained into a business when he started Midstate Mechanical. Since its inception in 1986, Jones has served as Midstate’s CEO and has successfully expanded Midstate from a small family business to one of the largest mechanical contractors in Arizona. Attraction to industry: “When I was 21, I started my career as a laborer at an oil refinery in Texas, and I realized quickly that I had an aptitude for the work. After all of these years, I am amazed at how much I still enjoy the nuts and bolts of construction.” Favorite book: “‘Outwitting the Devil,’ by Napoleon Hill, helped me to look deep within myself and acknowledge the bad habits that were holding me back.” 212 ABL | Nominate at

real estate // SUBCONTRACTORS

A JERRY BARNIER President // Suntec Concrete // Barnier is an ex-farm boy from Washington state that couldn’t take the wet, so he headed out. After leaving and spending one season as a ski bum in Jackson Hole, he hitchhiked to Phoenix, where he started his career in concrete. In 1984, after working at Artcraft for a few years, Barnier bought their concrete division and started Suntec Concrete. Source of pride: “I think I’m most proud of the retirement fund we started in 1989. We stayed committed for 30 years to a 15 percent-plus contribution for all employees. To see the tradesmen and leaders that started with me in those early years with a great future is really satisfying.”


B MARC BEYER Principal // TRUEFORM landscape architecture studio // Beyer has a unique aptitude for design specializing in office, multifamily and urban in-fill environments that showcases his attention to project detail and client care. Motivated to meet client and project goals, Beyer is driven to balance environmental stewardship with project budget and timelines. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to landscape architecture for its unique ability to stitch together creative ideas from clients and like-minded design professionals including architects and civil engineers as well as general contractors to create memorable projects. I am impressed by the immense resources and energy it takes to build these projects.” Surprising fact: “I played percussion in a band with three other friends called Circle of Influence.”

C JEROME BRUGGEMAN President // RMJ Electrical Contractors // Bruggeman has been involved in the construction industry since 1990. During his career, he has been involved in the entire construction process from project management and accounting to his current position as president. Bruggeman is a CPA and has earned bachelor’s degrees in business management and accounting as well as a masters degree in business administration, all from Arizona State University. As president, he oversees all aspects of the organization. Bruggeman continually seeks ways to improve processes at RMJ to better serve its customers.

D JOHN BRUNIA President // Spectra Electrical Services //


Brunia is the president of Spectra Electrical Services, Inc., a full-service electrical contractor based in Tempe. Over the past 20 years, he has led the organization’s growth and expansion and seen its annual revenues grow to more than $20 million. Attraction to industry: “Just as most kids do, I ended up in a career that found me versus doing what I thought I wanted to do growing up. I was originally attracted to the industry as a way to pay the bills. However, once I progressed further into the construction industry and was able to experience aspects like estimating, purchasing, project management, marketing, accounting, etc., I realized I that I wanted to make my career in the construction industry.”

E JERRY BUESING CEO and owner // Buesing Corp. // Buesing started Buesing Corp. in Long Lake, Minn., in 1965 at the age of 21 with two material transport trucks and a CAT 950 Loader. He grew the business over the next couple years to perform mass excavation grading, and soil and aggregate hauling. He served all of Minnesota and eight surrounding states until the mid-1980s. In 1985, he moved the company and its operations to Phoenix. Professional advice: “My advice for an owner or executive entering the construction industry is to surround yourself with quality people, with high integrity, and a solid knowledge base in their area of expertise. These key individuals should in turn elevate the importance of relationships with employees and customers alike and possess a passion for what they do.”

214 ABL | Nominate at



real estate // SUBCONTRACTORS

A TIM KING President // HACI Mechanical Contractors // HACI Mechanical Contractors has grown during the past 20 years from being primarily a sheetmetal contractor to a full-service mechanical contractor including sheetmetal, piping, plumbing and an extensive service division. During its growth HACI has always remained focused on quality and integrity. Personal strengths: “I always tried to treat other people the same way I would want to be treated. I have always tried to work with other people that follow that same principle.” Professional advice: “Enter the industry with a strong work ethic and a can-do attitude. Learn from your mistakes and the mistakes of others around you and make sure not to repeat mistakes.”


B BILL MASON President // Interstate Mechanical Corporation // An Arizona native, Mason began his career at IMCOR (then known as Karber Air Conditioning) in 1978. During his tenure with IMCOR, Mason held a variety of positions before being promoted to president in 2003. Mason is responsible for day-to-day operations of the company, including sales and marketing, budgeting, estimating and overseeing all department managers and employees. Personal strengths: “I think of myself as resilient, honest, curious and productive. Our business requires honesty, it is non-negotiable. Also, resiliency is a must, helping us to constantly adapt. I find curiosity energizing and uplifting. Lastly, productivity with my time has been essential in working towards my goals, personally and professionally.”



C DAN PUENTE Founder and CEO // DP Electric //


Puente founded DP Electric in 1990 and has worked and thrived here in the Valley in his 30 years in business. DP Electric has become one of the leading, full-service electrical contracting firms in Arizona. DP Electric has developed markets and technologies to become an industry leader in aviation, corporate office, healthcare, mission critical, hospitality, higher education, medium voltage and renewable energy. Business advice: “The one thing that I have found that makes the most impact is giving. Give your employees the opportunity to grow, reward them and help to improve their quality of life. They are the most important part of your business. Give to the community and the industry that gives so much to you. Lastly, give of yourself.”

D JON ROBERTS Owner // Re-Create Companies // Roberts started Re-Create Companies when he was just 22 years old. Re-Create started out doing small residential jobs and has now grown into one of the largest masonry firms in the southwest. His favorite part of owning his company is developing relationships with his clients while also promoting the masonry industry. Role model: “My role model is Jerry Barnier with Suntec Concrete. Everyone that knows him has nothing but good things to say about him in regards to business, leadership, and his hardworking attitude. I can only hope that one day people can think of me in the same way.” Surprising fact: “People may be surprised to learn that I own another company completely unrelated to construction (SandCraft Motorsports). It is an off-roading company that builds bulletproof parts for UTV’s.”

E ROBERT SORNSIN President // RKS Plumbing & Mechanical // Sornsin started RKS Plumbing and Mechanical in November 1990 with one employee — himself. Today, RKS Plumbing has nearly 300 employees. Role model: “My role model was my father, who owned a construction company in Fargo, North Dakota. After I earned a degree in construction engineering at Arizona State University, I returned to North Dakota to work in the family business. I learned much from my father, most importantly how to treat people.” Attraction to industry: “From a young age, I knew I wanted to own a business even if it was a popcorn stand. Over the course of my career, I have been most impressed with the skill and talent of the field employees. They often deal with the complex technical issues in builds such as water treatment plants.” 216 ABL | Nominate at






HACI Mechanical Contractors, Inc 2108 W Shangri-la Road Phoenix, AZ 85029 Phone (602) 944-1555 HACI Mechanical Contractors, Inc License #’s: ROC104397 ROC104169 ROC104170 ROC104171 ROC104172 ROC257478 ROC247905 HACI Service, LLC License #’s: ROC200617 ROC200618 ROC200619 ROC200620 ROC257479

real estate // LAND INVESTORS A LISA ATKINS Commissioner // Arizona State Land Department // Atkins was appointed by Governor Doug Ducey to serve as the 21st commissioner of the Arizona State Land Department on June 15, 2015. As an Arizona native, Atkins combines a wellrounded understanding of the State with more than 40 years of experience in the federal and state legislative and policy arenas, focusing on land, water and military issues. Atkins is well respected in the Arizona community for her involvement in a variety of organizations. Among her current community activities associated with her duties as State Land Commissioner, Atkins serves as the commissioner of the State’s Natural Resource Conservation Districts and as the state cartographer. Atkins is also a member of the State Parks board, the Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, and the Governor’s Water Augmentation Council. A

B STEVE MCKENDRY Founding partner, executive vice president, board of directors, designated broker // Daum Commercial Real Estate //


Starting his career with DAUM in 1973, McKendry has specialized in industrial property brokerage. His focus is the sale of industrial investment properties and has been instrumental in land sales to local and national industrial park developers. McKendry is responsible for DAUM’s Arizona operations and as the designated broker, takes an active role in teaching new agents about commercial real estate brokerage. Professional advice: “Take the time to understand what it takes to be successful in brokerage and to understand your personal motives for getting into the business, make sure you set written goals, keep yourself accountable with setting a high goal of how many new contacts you are going to make each day.”

C CHAZ SMITH Senior vice president // Colliers International // Smith specializes in the sale of land, with more than 35 years of commercial real estate experience. As a senior vice president and the senior member of the AZ LandSource Team with Colliers International, Smith defines the team’s focus and direction, ensures negotiations are finalized and that all parties fulfill their obligations, and provides a clear line of communication between all parties. The AZ LandSource Team has more than 60 years of combined experience. Personal strengths: “Determination, creative thinking and perseverance are qualities that have helped me. The sale of land for development is not a sprint but a marathon. You have to begin with a great property location then find the right developer for the site and then persist in getting the site through to the development stage.”

D KULDIP VERMA Founder and CEO // Vermaland //


Verma founded Vermaland in 2004. At that time, he felt like the city of Phoenix was positioned to grow. Verma decided to buy land about 10-15 miles away from existing development. Since it’s undeveloped land, he could buy it at a lower price and as development reached those areas, the values went up significantly. Over the years, he has used this strategy to buy and sell land. Vermaland is now one of the largest land owners in the state. Favorite book: “The best book I have read is Deepak Chopra’s ‘Sever Spiritual Laws of Success.’ It impacted me because being in touch with your spirituality is important to help you with your career. When I have mental clarity, I am able to think faster and make better decisions. It all goes hand in hand.”

E GREG VOGEL CEO // Land Advisors Organization // D


218 ABL | Nominate at

Since founding Land Advisors Organization in 1987, Vogel has applied his unique knowledge in the areas of land use, economics and market trends to become a trusted advisor to a broad spectrum of clients. He has led the expansion of the company into 24 markets across the United States. Role model: “Mike Mueller, who offered me a runnership at CBRE when I was only 19 years old, introduced me to the first Mac computer in 1983, including databases and spreadsheets. This became foundational related to Land Advisors Organization and its data and analytics that are imbedded today.” Attraction to industry: “The unlimited opportunity to earn as much as you want while helping people meet their needs and requirements in a highly specialized field.”

real estate // LAND INVESTORS

NATE NATHAN President // Nathan & Associates

Nathan is president and designated broker of Nathan & Associates, Inc. A Chicago native, Nathan graduated from Arizona State University in 1976 and founded Nathan & Associates, Inc. in December of 1980. Over the past 39 years, the firm has concentrated its efforts on land transactions for master-planned communities, residential, commercial, retail, industrial, and multi-family projects in Arizona. Nathan is an active member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and serves on the ULI Community Development Council (Silver Flight). Role models: “Jimmy Buffett and Deadpool. I always think WWJBD (what would Jimmy Buffett do). His view on life and enjoying everything to the fullest is what I follow in my own life. Deadpool has a sense of humor that is very similar to mine. A sense of humor is appreciated by all.” Attraction to industry: “When I graduated college, there was no way I was going to move back to Chicago, where I was born. I got my real estate license in college and have never looked back. What surprises me most is how much I love my job, and how lucky I am to work with my best friends both in and outside of the office.”

220 ABL | Nominate at

real estate // RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPERS A BOB BAMBAUER Executive vice president // Sunbelt Holdings // Bambauer joined Sunbelt Holdings as vice president in January of 2007. He spent five years managing operations at the Vistancia Master Planned Community. He currently offices in Goodyear and oversees the development of the PVl303 Industrial Park as well as various other residential and commercial properties in the Southwest Valley and Tucson. Bambauer has gained 35 years of valuable experience working for private civil engineering firms as well as private and major public homebuilders. His experience includes entitlements, land acquisition, land planning and development, customer service, purchasing and home construction. Bambauer has also been very involved in numerous Charitable Organizations, including the Boys and Girls Clubs and Southern Arizona Humane Society. A

B BRENT HERRINGTON President and CEO // DMB Development // Herrington provides strategic leadership for the DMB Development organization and oversees all aspects of the company’s operations. Herrington joined DMB in 1998 and has been actively involved in the visioning, strategy, planning and design of many of DMB’s major projects over the past 20 years. Role model: “An important mentor for me was Charles Fraser, a pioneer in the community development industry and the creator of Hilton Head and Sea Pines. He spoke often about the deep responsibility that accompanies the role of community developer. He said, ‘This world will live a long time with our successes and failures, thus our goal in each new community is to have a positive impact on the larger community of which we are part.’”


C SCOTT MORRISON Partner // Morrison Ranch // The second of Marvin and June Morrison’s three sons, Scott Morrison and his wife, Stormy, are happy residents of one of the first neighborhoods in Morrison Ranch, Higley Groves. He often walks to the development office a short quarter mile away, and thoroughly enjoys greeting other residents as he goes. For the first 10 years of his married life, Scott was a full-time farmer, both in Gilbert and in the Florence area. He now spends the bulk of his time working on planning issues for Morrison Ranch, while also serving on several boards. Stormy, a retired accountant, still helps out with some of the office accounting and also serves on a board. The favorite pastime for both Scott and Stormy is spending time with their four adult children and fast-growing cadre of grandchildren.

D WILLIAM OLSON Senior vice president and division manager //Newland, Olson leads a team of skilled professionals in research, land planning, development, land sales, finance, and marketing for Estrella, a 20,000-acre master-planned community in Goodyear. He is responsible for maintaining the community’s unique character while simultaneously driving revenue and community growth, retaining existing partners, and attracting new homebuilders and residents. Role model: “My father taught me the importance of authenticity, respect, discipline and commitment from a young age. Over a broad 38-year real estate career, I’ve been blessed to have worked with strong mentors at Del Webb, The Rouse Company, and Hines. At Newland, Bob McLeod, Ted Nelson and Dan Van Epp have shaped my career in master-planned community development.”


E TODD WOOD Founder and CEO // Christopher Todd Communities and Christopher Todd Properties // Wood has a 30-year history in real estate, including building, buying, financing and developing both residential and commercial. He’s also an entrepreneur who started from scratch the Alpine Valley Bakery, which he sold after 20 years of building it into a national and international baking and distribution company. Personal qualities: “A genuine thirst for knowledge drives me and I’m constantly striving to deepen my expertise. I am humble enough to know that I don’t know it all and am smart enough to surround myself by those who know much more than I.” Professional advice: “Surround yourself with the brightest minds in the industry. Be patient with your expected results, and be flexible to adapt to market changes.” 222 ABL | Nominate at



real estate // HOME BUILDERS

A MARK HANCOCK Managing director // Camelot Homes // Hancock is managing director of local homebuilder Camelot Homes, builder of thousands of luxury homes in many of the Valley’s premier master-planned communities over the last 40-plus years. He is the past director of the Homebuilders Association of Central Arizona and a board member of Boys Hope Girls Hope in the Valley. Hancock and Camelot Homes are recipients of dozens of local and national design and marketing awards. Professional advice: “My advice would be to surround yourself with highly talented people who love doing what they’re doing as much as you do. My company isn’t successful because of me, it’s our team members and trade partners that make us who we are.”



B REBECCA LUNDBERG Division President // PulteGroup // Over the last 15 years, Lundberg has worked for PulteGroup in three different states, holding various leadership roles, from sales to operations. Since June 2019, she has been the division president for PulteGroup in Arizona, where the company operates in 40-plus communities under three distinct brands: Pulte, Del Webb, and Centex. Attraction to industry: “My parents. They loved real estate and took my five siblings and me through various open houses when we were kids. They could see the vision in older, unmaintained properties, so it taught me to look past the dirt and have a vision for something greater.” Surprising fact: “I was a professional ballerina at 17 years old. Ballet taught me great lessons about discipline, hard work, taking feedback, and recognizing great performances.”


C SCOTT MOORE Division president // Ashton Woods Homes // Moore graduated with both undergraduate and master’s degrees from Arizona State University. Having been in the homebuilding industry since 1994, he has held leadership positions in finance, land, and operations. With 14 years as the division president of Ashton Woods in Phoenix, he remains committed to building a world-class culture and strives to provide outstanding customer satisfaction, homes, and neighborhoods. Attraction to industry: “Making a substantial positive impact to other’s lives both by building a great culture for employees and by providing customers with outstanding homes, communities and experiences is my favorite part of this industry. What has surprised me is how dynamic, interesting, and engaging the industry still is after 26 years.”

D DON MURPHY Division president // Shea Homes // Murphy has been the Shea Homes Arizona division president since 2015, but joined Shea Homes’ Active Adult division in 2002. He has held various positions in land acquisition, operations, and vice president. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon and an MBA from Arizona State University. He is proud to be an integral part of one of America’s largest, private and family owned home builders, delivering more than 100,000 homes across 10 markets. Professional advice: “My No. 1 piece of advice, for any Industry, is work with people that you believe in, that share your values, and who will take an interest in your career. The second piece of advice is rotate through positions and get profit & loss responsibility as soon as possible.”

224 ABL | Nominate at




A DANIEL BOYLAN President // DLB Custom Homes // Since 1998, DLB Custom Homes has been building extraordinary homes in various golf, luxury and lifestyle communities throughout Arizona. Personal qualities: “The personal qualities that have best served my success are being accountable, honest, and trustworthy. We do not take lightly the responsibility that our clients bestow upon us as a ‘steward and facilitator’ of the largest purchase one makes in their lifetime. It is with these qualities that our clients become lifetime friends and key partners in the ongoing success of DLB.” Professional advice: “Stay humble. There will be highs and lows, and it’s how you manage them that will define your success. Consciously surround yourself with good people, people that are happy and positive. Do not get complacent in your quest to be the best.”


B LINDSAY CULLUM-COLWELL Managing principal // Cullum Homes // B


In addition to being a second-generation owner with her husband, Paul, and working with her parents, Rod and Kim, Cullum-Colwell oversees the marketing and design divisions of the company. Cullum-Colwell guides her clients as they create their dream home through a structure that integrates architecture, interior design, and construction into a streamlined process managed by a single team of talented professionals to create the finest homebuilding experience. Attraction to industry: “I grew up in the business - literally. I am intrigued by the changing ways in which people live and how it constantly influences how we design and build homes. It’s fascinating to see the changing history of daily, unnoticed spaces that build into design trends and key spaces in the built environment.”

C DAVID KITNICK Founder and president // Rosewood Homes // E


Kitnick is a 34-year homebuilding veteran, having earned local and national recognition, while starting the Arizona Division of Greystone Homes in the early 1990’s and Ashton Woods in 2001 before founding Rosewood Homes. Kitnick led all three start-ups to “Builder of the Year” or “Small Volume Builder of the Year” honors at the homebuilding industry’s MAME Awards. Attraction to industry: “I was around homebuilding while growing up and I just loved it. I was also inspired by the vast responsibility knowing that a new home and neighborhood would last generations which was unlike most other products. This industry has given me the opportunity to use so many diverse skills and to work with so many different types of people which makes every day interesting, rewarding and challenging.”

D BRENDA SOUTHARD Principal, designer // Arlington Custom Builders // Southard is a graduate of ASU with a design degree, minoring in fine arts. She has been in the design/residential construction business for over 35 years, designing kitchens, bathrooms, and whole house remodeling. Role models: “My parents. My mother is a teacher who inspired me to look for opportunities to expand my knowledge. My father was a founding partner in a small business. He always stressed doing the best you can do, and to never let anyone hold you back from achieving your goals.” Favorite book: “‘1776,’ by David McCullough. A non-fiction book focusing on the events of the American Revolution, this work taught me to face adversity head on. Even if the opposition appears overwhelming, we must always persevere and keep our eyes on the goal.”

E STEVE WIGGINS President // Regency Custom Homes // Having a desire to be a home builder since a young age, Wiggins graduated from the ASU school of Engineering in Construction Management. He then went to work for two large production builders before striking out on his own at age 29. Twenty years later, he still enjoys the industry with passion and striving to streamline the process and staying on top of building trends remains invigorating. Attraction to industry: “I have been interested in homebuilding since I was a child, moving with my family into new homes every couple of years across the country. Having now grown close to clients from around the world, I am touched by the importance of family across generations, cultures, and economic status.” 226 ABL | Nominate at



e Int



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Small Volume Builder of the Year, Rosewood Homes will soon be offering a special collection of homes at our newest gated neighborhoods in North Scottsdale. These well-detailed, single-story residences will offer seamless indoor/outdoor living on generous lots in a choice of authentic architectural styles plus courtyards, casitas and oversized 3 & 4 car garages in a truly spectacular natural mountainous setting.

Join Interest List at

480-970-1900 Rosewood Homes is a multi-year recipient of the “Small Volume Builder of the Year” MAME Award from the Homebuilders Association of Central Arizona including winning in 2017, 2018, & 2019. And a 5-time winner of the prestigious Eliant Homebuyers Choice Award voted by homebuyers for providing the “Best Overall Purchase & Ownership Experience” in America. No offer to sell or lease may be made and no offer to purchase or lease may be accepted prior to issuance of the final Arizona Subdivision Public Report. In the interest of continuous improvement, Rosewood Homes reserves the right to change or modify pricing, plans, designs, materials, features and specifications without prior notice or obligation. Sales by Rosewood Sales Group, LLC. Rosewood Homes Construction, LLC ROC#250901. © Rosewood Homes 2020.


A R. CHAPIN BELL CEO // P.B. Bell // As CEO of P.B. Bell, Bell leads the strategic planning and growth of the company and oversees all aspects of P.B. Bell, including development, acquisitions and property management. He joined P.B. Bell in 1993 after serving as a commercial leading officer and vice president of National City Bank, and became president of P.B. Bell in 2007 and the sole shareholder in 2019. Attraction to industry: “My first job at 14 was working at one on of the first apartment buildings my father acquired in the 1970s. Thus, the industry has been in my blood since then. What surprises me is how the industry has changed. Because apartments have often become a housing of choice versus housing out of necessity, the industry has dramatically changed in design, use of technology, staffing needs and services provided.”


B ALANA MANN President and owner // Statesman Group of Companies


More than 20 years ago, Mann, president and owner of The Statesman Group, took helm of her family’s 40-year-old business and has since expanded it from a residential developer based in Alberta, to a multi-divisional developer, builder, investor and manager of condominium, multifamily and senior living communities throughout Arizona and North America. Essence of leadership: “I strongly believe that the most effective leadership is not by way of dictatorship. We have a plaque in our staff room that says, ‘If you tell me, I will forget; please show me, and I will remember; however, involve me, and I will understand.’ This way of leadership has engaged our staff to be more empowered in their capacity and work towards what is best for the company to achieve greater success.”

C MIKE TARVER Partner and managing member // MT Builders // Tarver obtained his education in the construction engineering College at ASU. He has worked in the Arizona construction industry for about 50 years. The last 25 years have been spent developing MT Builders into a company with annual volume of $230 million. Personal strengths: “Desire to excel, determination, passion for my industry, concern for the welfare of my team and clients.” Professional advice: “Make sure you have passion for your profession. It is difficult to succeed if you are not motivated with a burning desire to see exciting things happen within your business.”


D BRUCE WARD Chairman and CEO // Alliance Residential Company // B

Ward is the chairman and CEO of Alliance Residential Company, overseeing acquisition, development and property management efforts. Alliance Residential has been one of the top leading apartment builders in the United States for the each of the last 10 years. Ward and the key executive group have acquired or developed 120,000 apartment homes across the country. He is the former group managing partner of Trammell Crow Residential – West, responsible for all operating businesses in the western U.S. While at Trammell Crow Residential, he served on the management board with responsibility for the strategic planning and guidance of the firm. Ward led the merger of Trammell Crow Residential – West with BRE Properties, a San Francisco-based REIT in 1997.

E PATRICIA WATTS Co-founder // Greenlight Communities // Watts co-founded Greenlight Communities, and its affiliates, Deco Communities and Starpointe Communities and has been extensively involved in real estate and operating businesses in Greater Phoenix since 1996. Watts is an advocate for attainable housing and leads Greenlight in breaking the traditional model of real estate development through technology and innovation. Attraction to industry: “I wanted to be a part of the design and development of our built world because I believed that good design inherently impacts every aspect of our lives. My experience has only reinforced this idea.” Favorite book: “‘The Art of Possibility,’ by Rosamund Stone Zander, gave me a deep sense of the powerful role that the notion of possibility can play in every aspect of life, both personally and professionally.”

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real estate // REAL ESTATE COMPANIES A CARMEN BRODEUR, JD Realtor // Trillium Properties // Brodeur is a luxury real estate agent in Scottsdale and the co-founder of Trillium Properties. She was an attorney prior to becoming a Realtor. Her legal experience, professionalism, knowledge of contracts and negotiating skills have propelled her to the top of her profession. Attraction to industry: “I became a Realtor because of my strong passion for real estate. My talents, traits and professional qualities that I developed as an attorney, lend themselves perfectly to a career in real estate. My education, legal experience, knowledge of contracts and negotiating skills make me uniquely qualified to represent my clients.” Surprising fact: “Many people are surprised to find out that I was an attorney before becoming a Realtor.”


B CLINT FOUTS CEO and president // West USA Realty //


During Fouts’ tenure, the company has achieved remarkable growth, doubling production and expanding its agent base. These accomplishments led to the company being recognized in the Top 15 most productive brokerages in the nation. West USA Realty is also recognized as the one of the nation’s top privately held brokerages. Personal strengths: “As a child, I accompanied my father on numerous real estate sales appointments, company business meetings, negotiations, and participated as an employee and manager from an early age. This knowledge has allowed me to assemble an incredible team who share the passion and vision to provide state of the art technology and unparalleled customer service to our agents. This translates into a better-prepared and higher-caliber practitioner to service the consumer.”

C TODD GILLENWATER CEO and co-owner // Russ Lyon | Sotheby’s International Realty // Gillenwater is an Arizona native and during his 30-year career with Russ Lyon SIR, he has worked as a sales associate, associate broker, managing broker and currently serves as CEO and is a co-owner of the 73-year residential company with offices across the state. Role model: “My older brothers, Gil and Troy, have absolutely been my mentors and have impacted my career and life in major ways. Professionally, they’ve showed me the delicate but powerful balance of working hard, playing hard and succeeding by helping others since I was in college. I continue to learn from them to this day.” Favorite book: “The complete works of William Shakespeare. Our language is incredibly rich, complex and powerful, and Shakespeare wielded it like a sword. Oh, and I was an Early British Literature major.”



D DEBBIE JARSON Designated broker, owner, architecture specialist Jarson & Jarson Real Estate // Jarson offers a design and fashion background, having attended Miami of Ohio University and the Toby Coburn School of Design in New York City. Jarson has been a full-time Realtor since 1984. Together with her husband, Scott, they have specialized in what they describe as “Architecturally Unique Homes” since 1990. Personal strengths: “I love spending time with people and helping them accomplish their goals, whether it be finding the right house or becoming a top-notch agent.” Professional advice: “Prepare yourself for the job. Equip yourself with the right tools to help you succeed and surround yourself with other positive top tier professionals as they will help propel you to be the best. And finally, never stop learning. No one knows everything.”

E MATT WIDDOWS CEO and founder // HomeSmart International // Real estate wasn’t a high-tech experience when Widdows started Scottsdale-based HomeSmart in 2000. There were no mobile apps for agents or easy-to-use transaction management systems, but he could see the potential. Widdows believed agents could save time, make more money and sell more houses with digital help. In 2009, HomeSmart was one of the first brokerages to go completely paperless. Now, it’s among the top 10 largest brokerages in the nation and the largest in Arizona; the leading 100 percent brokerage franchisor; and a business systems company with a reputation for proprietary software that puts agents ahead of the curve. Surprising fact: “I have loved aviation and space since I was a kid. I have been flying privately for about 25 years and I am currently type rated to fly jets.” 230 ABL | Nominate at

SERVICES // real estate

A JIM BELFIORE Founder and president // Belfiore Real Estate Consulting Belfiore has more than 20 years of experience in real estate research and analysis. During the last 14 years, his team and he have helped Arizona developers, homebuilders, lenders, investors, and brokers understand buyers, macro and micro-level supply and demand conditions, and potential outcomes of community development and building strategies. Personal strengths: “Although it may seem counter-intuitive, the Great Recession greatly helped our business and my career. The severity of the economic crisis, forced us to work harder, to innovate, and to become immersed in the industry. It was a scary time for my family and I. Our hard work, though, paid off, and we came out of the recession as a respected, leading Arizona research firm.”



B JEFF FLEETHAM Director // Arizona Registrar of Contractors // Gov. Doug Ducey appointed Fleetham as director of Arizona Registrar of Contractors (ROC) in 2015. Prior to his appointment, he owned 12-88 LLC, a residential project consulting and dispute resolution company, licensed as a B-3 General Residential Remodeling Contractor. His background includes construction, consumer products, consulting, and dispute resolution in both public and private sector industries. Fleetham was an investigator with Arizona Registrar of Contractors from Jan. 2007 to Sept. 2013. He serves on several councils and boards and in mid-2015, the National Association of State Contractors Licensing Agencies’ (NASCLA) Executive Committee appointed him to their Board of Directors.

C K. MICHELLE LIND CEO // Arizona Association of Realtors // Lind oversees the strategic direction and operations of the largest trade association in Arizona. Prior to becoming CEO, Lind served as general counsel to the association and was integral in the development of AAR’s contract and transaction forms. She is the author of “Arizona Real Estate: A Professional’s Guide to Law & Practice,” now in its third edition. Personal strengths: “I try to be proactive, rather than reactive. Being proactive has helped my career by addressing problems before they occur and helps me to ‘stay ahead of the curve’ in an ever-changing industry.” Professional advice: “Understand the unique dynamics of working in a volunteer-driven organization. Listen more than you talk and keep your mind open to new ideas.”

D ELLIOTT POLLACK CEO // Elliott D. Pollack & Company //


Pollack is CEO of Elliott D. Pollack & Company, an economic and real estate consulting firm in Scottsdale, Arizona established in 1987. The company is widely known for accurate and insightful analyses of national and Arizona economic and policy issues. His firm consults to a broad spectrum of clients. Personal qualities: “Honesty. Tenacity. Common sense. Continual learning. Humor. These qualities allowed me to explain seemingly complex issues in a way that can be understood by most people. Plus, even after almost 50 years, I love what I do.”

E ROSIE ROMERO JR. President and founder // Rosie on the House // Romero has worked in the remodeling industry in a variety of trades beginning in 1972. He opened Legacy Custom Builders in 1988 and sold the company in 2002. During his years as owner, Legacy received numerous local and national awards. This year, Rosie celebrates 32 years as host of Rosie on the House, the No. 1 weekend radio broadcast and referral network in Arizona. Personal strengths: “I have never been happy with ‘ pretty good’ or ‘good enough.’ If a project has our name on it, the benchmark is perfection in all areas — perfection in processes, procedures and of course the fit and finish.” Professional advice: “Congratulations! You have made a great career choice.”



Nominate at | ABL 231

real estate // TITLE & INSURANCE

A LAURA AMADA President and county manager // Chicago Title Agency // Amada has worked with Chicago Title Agency for more than 14 years. Chicago Title has more than 165 years of underwriting experience. Its centralized team of industry experts provides commercial and industrial developers, builders, lenders, attorneys and other real estate professionals with reliable, integrated, high-liability services nationwide. Company strengths: “We know that commercial, industrial and builder major accounts require speed, accuracy and confidentiality. We have built a reputation for efficiency in processing the most complex real estate transactions.”

B BRUCE BEVERLY CEO // Great American Title Agency //


Beverly began his financial career in the lending industry and transitioned into the escrow industry in 2004 when he joined Great American as its CEO. Great American had three branches at the time, but now has offices Valleywide and has been ranked the No. 1 Title Company in Arizona since 2009 — no small accomplishment for a locally owned title company. Attraction to industry: “I was a mortgage banker who took a detour and found myself in the escrow and title industry. I was told escrow didn’t like change. I learned quickly that the folks who work within it may not like change but they can adapt to anything and they succeed in making the impossible - possible. It’s an industry that is not well understood, is underappreciated and filled with caring, highly skilled and dedicated professionals.”

C TOM DAVIS Vice president // Pioneer Title Agency //



Davis is vice president of Pioneer Title Agency, a local, family-owned business with nearly 80 branches in more than 45 cities across Arizona, all focused on a “Commitment to Service.” With over 40 years of experience in the industry, Davis held positions as the president and chief operating officer of Westland Title Agency and as the president of Grand Canyon Title Agency before coming to Pioneer Title in 2014. Role model: “My biggest role model and mentor was my mother, Orla, who embodied hard work and dedication by championing a career working at Luke Air Force Base and raising five children after my father died. I also credit former bosses, coworkers and competitors for helping in my personal and professional growth.”

D BART PATTERSON CEO // Clear Title Agency of Arizona // Patterson graduated from the University of Arizona in 1995 and joined Leading Edge Technologies, an engineering firm focused upon GPS applications. In 2006, Patterson founded Clear Title Agency, a full-service title and escrow agency which has experienced an annualized growth rate of 129 percent. Personal strengths: “No question: my willingness to take risk coupled with a very strong work ethic that was instilled in me by my parents and grandparents. And, the selfconfidence in knowing that if I worked hard enough, I would eventually figure out a way to be successful.”

E MICHELLE SCHWARTZ Senior vice president and county manager Old Republic Title // Schwartz built her career from the ground up, beginning as a receptionist, and credits her mentors for fostering her servant-leader mentality. Schwartz believes a peoplecentric culture is necessary to achieve both personal and professional growth. Leadership goal: “My objective as a leader is to help others achieve their full potential. I am committed to creating a new standard in the title insurance industry, an environment where the best and brightest can reach their goals. An environment that is not fear based or top-down, and free from intimidation.” Professional advice: “The title insurance industry is a gold mine. If you enjoy serving people, like working with numbers, love both working/playing hard on the job, and want to create a career that allows you to create a life of abundance for yourself and your family, this is a place you can create all the above.” 232 ABL | Nominate at


technology & manufacturing // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK


OF INNOVATION Here is a look at some of the groundbreaking work that is happening in Arizona


n 2019, we ended the year with the announcement that more than 9,000 technology companies had started up, moved to or expanded operations in Arizona. Many of these companies—new and established—are producing some of the most innovative technology we have ever seen. And because of this, Arizona is attracting more talent and investment dollars, making our state one of the best in the country for innovation. In this article, I’ll be highlighting some of the most intriguing and impactful technology being produced in Arizona this year and beyond. These are the industries and companies the Arizona Technology Council sees as some of the most promising innovators and emerging segments in our state:

Aerospace and commercial space

Arizona has been a popular destination for the aerospace industry for many decades because of the favorable climate for testing and development and the proximity to many military bases. This includes some of the biggest players such as Boeing, Raytheon (now merged with United Technologies), General Dynamics and Honeywell, all with significant Arizona operations. Northrop Grumman, one of Arizona’s largest aerospace companies, completed the $7.8 billion purchase of

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Orbital ATK in 2019, significantly growing its presence in defense space applications. Our state also hosts some of the most innovative organizations in the commercial space industry, including World View Enterprises, which is close to launching a fleet of balloon vehicles called World View Orbits. This type of spacecraft can float around Earth’s stratosphere to offer customers high-resolution imagery and analytics for a wide variety of uses. Arizona is also home to KinetX Aerospace, which is responsible for the navigation of many NASA missions such as the New Horizons spacecraft that recently reached Pluto. Iridium Satellite Communications is using the final frontier to create a global communications network. By developing a global constellation of 66 cross-linked Low-Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, the Iridium network provides high-quality voice and data connections over the planet’s entire surface, including across airways, oceans, and polar regions. Our prestigious post-secondary institutions, Arizona State University (ASU) and University of Arizona (UA) are also major players in the aerospace sector. UA is currently working with NASA and other partners on the OSIRIS-Rex mission on the first-ever attempt to touch the surface of an asteroid, named Bennu, and create a 3D map of the asteroid, collect a sample of it, safely back away and return safely to Earth. According to NASA, the purpose of the mission is to gather material from the very

Steven G. Zylstra Technology

earliest days of the solar system — material that could carry clues about our beginnings and perhaps even the ingredients for life. Among the many space and aerospace projects being conducted at ASU, in February 2020, an ASU aerospace project was among the highest scoring proposals for the MacArthur Foundation $100 million grant and was designated in the top 100 proposals. The grant will pay out $100 million to the winning proposal. The project titled, Global Biodiversity Observatory, was started by Greg Asner, director of ASU’s Center for Global Discovery and Conservation Science. Asner’s team currently maps land biodiversity, greenhouse gas emissions and coral reef health from a “super plane” equipped with 3D mapping tools. With additional funding, the observatory project will employ Earth-orbiting satellites with miniaturized imaging spectrometers connected through artificial intelligence to drive a new internationally accessible decision-support system, empowering a rapid reversal of biodiversity loss.

Education technology

Arizona has quietly built the largest education technology (edtech) sector in the nation with more than 50 edtech companies selecting Arizona for their headquarters. We’re leading the way for an industry that is expected to grow to $252 billion by 2020, as reported by Harvard Business Review. Companies such as CampusLogic, Picmonic, Parchment and Proctorio are among our top homegrown companies. In addition, companies like Zovio, which started in San Diego, have taken notice and moved their headquarters here to take advantage of our knowledge base and resources in edtech. Some of the innovation coming out of the edtech space include, CampusLogic’s suite of products designed to help students overcome the hurdles of financing their education. Picmonic has developed a unique learning system via a novel multimedia web-based platform that delivers audiovisual mnemonics designed to improve memory retention of medical sciences. Zovio partners with higher education institutions and employers to deliver innovative, personalized learning solutions. Its network of solutions includes Fullstack Academy, TutorMe, and Learn@ Forbes, all designed and customized for Nominate at | ABL 235

technology & manufacturing // INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

each specific user. Local leaders here in Arizona also started EdTechAZ to tackle challenges and support technology solutions that address innovation in our education ecosystem. In addition, after seeing the impact of the COVID-19 virus, agile edtech organizations, academic institutions and platforms are becoming even more critical to maintaining the status quo during unfortunate circumstances and national emergencies. The innovation surrounding edtech allows remote access to teachers, curriculum and resources for education. It also provides alternative methods of learning for children and adults.

Electric vehicles

One of the more exciting announcements emerging from Arizona’s technology sector came from Nikola and Lucid, two of the premier electric vehicle manufacturers in the world. Arizona had already established itself as a top location for automotive innovation with the explosion of autonomous vehicle testing. Now, electric vehicle manufacturers are paving the way for the industry sector. Nikola has built its new research and development center and corporate headquarters in Phoenix, as well as planning its manufacturing plant in Coolidge. When completed, these projects will add more than 2,000 jobs to Arizona’s economy. Nikola is also building zeroemission big rigs using hydrogen fuel cell technology. The company has the potential to completely change the electric vehicle industry and sustainability with revolutionary battery advancements. Nikola also has a line of electric off-road vehicles. Lucid Motors has begun construction on its electric vehicle manufacturing facility in Casa Grande and plans to hire 1,400 people by the beginning of 2023. The

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company will build luxury electric vehicles with an innovative battery system that could be scaled to work across many vehicle types. They will compete with Tesla.

IoT and wearables

The internet of things (IoT) is another sector where Arizona will continue to innovate in 2021. IoT offers a nearlimitless number of applications, including autonomous vehicles. It’s also responsible for smart cities and homes, connected health care, and other uses that will become more prominent and continue to develop in Arizona. Avnet is a leader in IoT services as it creates massive networks upon which new technologies can be built. The technology solutions provider is helping companies all over the world innovate IoT applications and integrate them into existing hardware and software. Benchmark is another company creating custom solutions through the development of innovative IoT gateways at its Tempe headquarters. Semiconductor and microprocessor giant Intel has also been a major player with its development of the underlying sensor technology to enable IoT as well as providing the massive computing capacity required. Economic development, technology and educational institutions are also working to grow Arizona’s presence in the wearables market. According to industry analyst firm CCS Insight, the global wearables market is worth $25 billion, with more than 245 million wearable devices sold. In 2019, the Arizona Legislature appropriated a $750,000 matching grant with a local match of $1,261,400 to build a 5,000-squarefoot WearTech Applied Research Center at Park Central Mall as part of a public/private collaboration between the Partnership for Economic Innovation, Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), Arizona State University and the Arizona government.

The goal of the facility is to create a hub for wearables innovation, as well as provide a center for startups in the industry with resources and opportunities to grow. According to GPEC, the project estimates 45 new ventures and 223 jobs will be created over the three-year grant period. The wearable innovation being produced at the WearTech Center include a host of medtech and fitness devices. GoX Labs has developed a body-worn sensor system for worker wellness which includes a motion torso clip-pod, smartwatch, smart insoles and a smartphone. The system tracks over 20 physiological and biomechanical metrics that are key to identifying workplace injury risks. The company has partnered with Samsung to develop and launch the system. Another wearable startup, Hoolest Performance Technologies, has created earbud technology called the P57 One, which applies small electric impulses that stimulate a branch of the vagus nerve near the ear. This activates the body’s response to induce a calm and focused state. This product was featured on ESPN. This is just a small sample of some of the most innovative industries, companies and technologies leading the way for Arizona’s technology ecosystem in 2020 and beyond. Arizona is fortunate to have an outstanding combination of a protechnology government, regulations promoting growth and innovation, a low cost of living, a better quality of life and great research universities compared to other traditional tech hubs. These factors make our state a wonderful place to launch a startup, test new technology and grow a business. The influx of innovation is surging, and the nation’s technology industry is paying attention to Arizona. Steven G. Zylstra is president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council.

We surf the Internet. We swim in magazines. The Internet is exhilarating. Magazines are enveloping. The Internet grabs you. Magazines embrace you. The Internet is impulsive. Magazines are immersive. And both media are growing. Barely noticed amidst the thunderous Internet clamor is the simple fact that magazine readership has risen over the past several years. Even in the age of the Internet, even among the groups one would assume are most singularly hooked on digital media, the appeal of magazines is growing. Think of it this way: during the life of Google, magazine readership actually increased 11 percent. What it proves, once again, is that a new medium doesn’t necessarily displace an existing one. Just as movies didn’t kill radio. Just as TV didn’t kill movies. An established medium can continue to flourish so long as it continues to offer a unique experience. And, as readers’ loyalty and growth demonstrate, magazines do. Which is why people aren’t giving up swimming, just because they also enjoy surfing.

The Power of Print Copy Credit: Young & Rubicam

technology & manufacturing // AEROSPACE & DEFENSE

A MIKE BIANCO CEO // AvAir // It was a steady rise to the top for Bianco, who began as the aviation after-market components supplier’s first official employee back in 2000. Now, he sits proudly at the helm of one of the aviation after-market industry’s most notable international success stories, helping serve more than 2,700 customers spanning 118 different countries. Personal qualities: “I’ve always been relentlessly persistent, and it’s served me well through the years. When I started at AvAir, I worked in the warehouse, and in the years since, I’ve worked my way up to the CEO role.” Professional advice: “I’d let others entering the aviation aftermarket industry know that recognition is very important. It is critical that you foster healthy and growing relationships with your customers worldwide on a daily basis.”




B MARC DROBNY President, business aviation // StandardAero // Drobny joined StandardAero in March 2018 and is responsible for leading the achievement of performance objectives, customer satisfaction and business development activities of the Business Aviation Sector, which is dedicated to the maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) of non-commercial, business aviation aircraft. Drobny reports directly to the CEO of StandardAero and is a member of the company’s Executive Leadership Team. Prior to StandardAero, Drobny served as president of Executive Jet Management, the aircraft management and charter division of the Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary NetJets Inc, and one of the largest business jet operators in the world with over 200 aircraft and more than 50 different aircraft types under management.

C CHRISTOPHER KEELER Gilbert site lead // Northrop Grumman // Keeler is an experienced business and site director with demonstrated accomplishments and history working in the space, defense, alternative energy, and technology industries. He is skilled in organizational and site leadership, growing and managing profit and loss, international business, stakeholder campaigns, shaping markets, new business capture, proposal writing, risk management, program management and processes, ITAR, import/export, system requirements, and technology application. Attraction to industry: “A passion for space exploration started it, the sheer caliber of people and being able to support our nation’s security and environment keeps the passion alive. Most surprising is how we continue to find new ways to utilize and explore space - it’s amazing!”

D SHAWN LINAM CEO // Qwaltec // Linam is the co-founder of Qwaltec, a woman-owned business that provides high-quality mission readiness, technical training and systems engineering. Prior to founding Qwaltec in 2001, Linam provided mission readiness and training for commercial and government satellite operations teams. Professional advice: “Choose a university, like ASU, that has a strong aerospace or space exploration school and try to get involved with any research projects they’re working on. Join clubs that provide hands-on experience and networking opportunities with industry leaders. Any experience you can gain, outside the classroom, will help launch your career.” Surprising fact: “I am afraid of heights and claustrophobic, which makes me an unlikely candidate for dreaming of traveling to space, but it is still a dream.”


E ROB WILSON CEO // TurbineAero //


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Prior to becoming CEO of TurbineAero, Wilson founded Aerospace Advisory Group, LLC in 2014, and served leading aerospace companies in consulting and board roles. Wilson served the last nine years of his 27-year Honeywell career as the president of the business and general aviation business, which serves customers who produce, operate and maintain business jets and general aviation aircraft across the globe. He grew the business at twice the industry rate to over $2.5 billion and expanded margins by over 50 percent in the period 2009 to 2014. In prior roles, Wilson led the Military Aircraft electronics business to significant operational improvements and led the certification and production introduction of Honeywell’s new generation propulsion engine.

ENERGY // technology & manufacturing

A MICHAEL HUMMEL General manager and CEO // SRP // Hummel was named as SRP’s general manager and CEO in March 2018. Mike has over 35 years at Salt River Project and has served in several executive level positions. Prior to his selection as GM/ CEO, he was SRP’s deputy general manager for resources and finance. Personal qualities: “I believe the three personal qualities that helped me most in my career and life are integrity, curiosity and focus. People have to know you will follow through on commitments. They have to trust you will live up to your promises. It’s imperative to constantly learn and seek new, better ways to move forward. You must also maintain a steadfast focus on important issues to ensure you will not be sidetracked by the latest headline or gimmick.”


B DAVID HUTCHENS CEO // Tucson Electric Power, UniSource Energy Services and their parent company, UNS Energy Corporation // Hutchens began his TEP career 25 years ago as an energy efficiency analyst, transitioned to wholesale energy marketing and led the development of TEP’s renewable energy portfolio as he rose through various leadership positions to become CEO in May 2014. Role model: “My predecessor, CEO Paul Bonavia, was a terrific mentor who helped prepare me for my current responsibilities. He emphasized the importance of “doing well by doing good” in our communities and was the catalyst of TEP’s transition to cleaner energy resources.” Attraction to industry: “I found it appealing that TEP provides such an essential service to our community and economy, and I appreciated the complexity of the operations needed to fulfill that role.”

C SANDRA KENNEDY Commissioner // Arizona Corporation Commission //



Kennedy started her public service when she was elected to the Arizona House of Representatives in November 1986, where she served for six years. During her tenure as a House member, she co-authored and introduced with fellow member Patty Nolan Arizona’s first Domestic Violence Bill. She found that working across the aisle, many issues could be accomplished with bi-partisan support and the people of Arizona would benefit greatly. In 1992, she ran successfully for a seat to represent her District in the Arizona State Senate, where she served for three terms. Kennedy has always been a strong voice to those she represents, never shy about being outspoken. Kennedy was first elected to the Arizona Corporation Commission in 2008 on a platform of promoting solar energy in Arizona.

D JIM PIOTROWSKI Director, distributed energy resources // APS // Piotrowski is director, distributed energy resources for Arizona Public Service Company. Based in Phoenix, APS is Arizona’s largest electric company, serving nearly 1.2 million customers. During his 38-year career at the company, Piotrowski has helped APS build the largest solar fleet in Arizona. In addition, his team manages battery storage projects and microgrids. Attraction to industry: “The industry is continually evolving and provides opportunities to be innovative with new technologies, i.e. pairing batteries with solar to help with our peak demand in the evenings. Perhaps one of the most surprising things is how politically influenced and regulated it is.” Surprising fact: “I have snow skied and water skied in the same day.”

E MARK WIDMAR CEO // First Solar // Widmar became CEO of First Solar in July 2016. He joined First Solar in April 2011 as chief financial officer and served as First Solar’s chief accounting officer from February 2012 through June 2015. Widmar has also served as a director on the board of the general partner of 8point3 Energy Partners LP, then a publicly-traded yieldco and affiliate of First Solar. Prior to joining First Solar, Widmar served as chief financial officer of GrafTech International Ltd., a leading global manufacturer of advanced carbon and graphite materials, from May 2006 through March 2011, as well as president, Engineered Solutions from January 2011 through March 2011. Prior to joining GrafTech, Widmar served as corporate controller of NCR Inc. from 2005 to 2006. C

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technology & manufacturing // COMMUNICATIONS



As CEO of GoDaddy, Bhutani brings over 20 years of experience in technical, management, and leadership roles ushering brands into new eras of innovation and global growth. Prior to joining GoDaddy in 2019, Bhutani spent nearly a decade at Expedia Inc., where he served as Brand Expedia Group president from 2015 to 2019 and chief technology officer and senior vice president of worldwide engineering from 2010 to 2015. Prior to joining Expedia, Bhutani served as senior vice president at JP Morgan Chase. In 2018, Bhutani was elected to the board of directors of The New York Times Company serving the Audit and Technology & Innovation committees. He earned his MBA from Lancaster University in Lancashire, England, and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Delhi University.

B TONI BROBERG President - Arizona // AT&T //


Broberg is president of AT&T Arizona and leads external, government and public affairs efforts statewide, supporting infrastructure investment and community engagement. Her career has spanned local and national government affairs positions, including serving in the White House as deputy associate director for communities at the Council on Environmental Quality. Role model: “My three sisters are my role models and mentors. They have been the pillars throughout my career, giving me motivation and support to work for whatever goal I have had in my life. Having strong, driven, multi-talented women by my side has been one of the greatest gifts.” Surprising fact: “I love to surf. Swimming in the sea on a board is my happy place.”

C JULIE LAULIS Chair of the board, president and CEO // Cable One // Laulis joined Cable One in 1999 as director of marketing-NW Division. After rising through the ranks, she was named president and chief executive officer in 2017 and in 2018 she was named chair of the board. Attraction to industry: “I specifically studied telecommunications (cable) in college because it was a new industry so I thought a young professional — especially a young female professional — would have a chance there. After spending 35-plus years in the business, I am surprised at how much I continue to learn and how addicted I am to it. I believe in this industry, I love working in it and I have not been bored one day.” Favorite book: “I love to read, so this is tough! I will go with Clayton Christensen’s ‘How Will You Measure Your Life?’”

D CLARK PETERSON Chairman // Cloud Communications Alliance // Peterson has been successful in building national and global communications businesses in the wireline, wireless, Voice, Data, and Cloud industries and part of successful IPO’s with three of the businesses. He is chairman of the Cloud Communications Alliance , which comprises eight hosted IP voice and data communications companies. Launched in April 2010 and creating some stir in the industry, the CCA’s mission is to promote awareness of the new standard called cloud communications and drive its development through the pursuit of new technical standards, capabilities and applications. Professional advice: “Think big. The cloud communications industry is dramatically changing the way people work and businesses communicate and operate.”

E JOHN WOLFE Senior vice president and Southwest Region manager Cox Communications Arizona //


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Wolfe is senior vice president and Southwest Region manager of Cox Communications’ Southwest Region, responsible for the company’s overall operations in Arizona and Nevada. A 27-year Cox veteran, Wolfe came to Phoenix to join the company’s Southwest Region in 2014. He serves on the boards of Greater Phoenix Leadership and The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. He is the current President of the Southwest Cable Communications Association board of directors and an inductee of the organization’s Pioneer Hall of Fame. Personal strengths: “I am an incurable optimist, believing that every challenge has a solution. It’s been my experience that people respond well to leaders who can paint an encouraging, yet accurate, picture of the future.”

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technology & manufacturing // MANUFACTURING

A CHRISTINE BOLES Vice president, Internet of Things Group; general manager, Industrial Solutions Division // Intel // Boles’ organization is responsible for Intel’s Industrial IOT business within the manufacturing, energy, logistics and commercial building segments, including the product and ecosystem strategies for this rapidly evolving space. Boles joined Intel in 1992 as an application engineer for 16 bit microcontrollers. For 25 years, she has led development, delivery and the enabling of customers and ecosystems for Intel based solutions in many managerial roles. These solutions span a broad range of embedded and internet of things applications across many industries, including communications, storage, retail, imaging and commercial buildings. Boles holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from University of Cincinnati and an MBA from Arizona State University.



B MIKE BUSEMAN Executive vice president of global operations // Benchmark Electronics Buseman brings over 30 years of experience into this role and most recently served as chief global logistics and operations officer of Avnet Corporation, a global electronics components company. Prior to that, he was executive vice president of operations with Plexus Corporation and served in a variety of engineering and operations roles for Celestica and Unisys. Buseman holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from South Dakota State University and a master’s in business administration from The University of St. Thomas in Minnesota.


C DAWN GROVE Chair // Arizona Manufacturers Council // Grove is corporate counsel for Karsten Manufacturing Corporation, the parent company of PING and related subsidiaries, and has served on the board of directors of Karsten Manufacturing Corporation continuously since 1995. KMC’s main subsidiary, PING, is one of the top three golf equipment brands in the U.S., exports about half of its products outside the U.S. and has earned the most Golf Digest Hot List awards of any golf equipment brand for three straight years. Grove serves as chairwoman of the Arizona Manufacturers Council and is the longest serving member of its board of directors. In 2015, she was appointed to the U.S. Manufacturing Council, which directly advises the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and other cabinet members on issues related to strengthening U.S. manufacturers.

D STEVE MACIAS President and CEO // Pivot Manufacturing // Macias is a co-owner of Pivot Manufacturing and has been the president and CEO since the company’s inception in 2000. Pivot has grown from a small job shop to a company that does machining, assembly, and contract management. Macias handles the sales and finance side of Pivot and is heavily engaged in the business community promoting the manufacturing industry in Arizona. He is currently the chair of the Arizona Manufacturing Council and also sits on the boards of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Arizona Commerce Authority. Surprising fact: “In college a buddy of mine and I once sunk a Chevy Blazer in a fully flowing Salt River. Got lucky getting out alive on that one.”

E JEFF WHITEMAN President and CEO // Empire Southwest //


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Whiteman is the third-generation president and CEO of Empire Southwest, a premiere Caterpillar dealer for Arizona and Southeastern California founded in 1950. Whiteman grew up in the business and started working at Empire in 1988 before being named president, CEO and chairman in 2003. He has a passion for the industry with a strong emphasis on market share, employee satisfaction and strict adherence to Empire’s corporate values. Role model: “My grandfather and dad had the biggest impact in my career. They both taught me the value in making things better because you were there, regardless of where that it is. And to never forget that if you take care of the farm, the farm will take care of you.”

TECH INNOVATORS // technology & manufacturing

A REBECCA CLYDE Co-founder and CEO // // Clyde is the CEO of, a startup offering intelligent chat nurturing solutions for business. With more than 20 years in technology industry marketing, she is passionate about advancing women in tech. Prior to, she co-founded Ideas Collide, now in its 15th year serving global enterprise clients. Professional advice: “Identify role models and find a way to network with them. I’d also recommend working on one’s own leadership skills and looking for opportunities to serve the community. Strong community leadership is always a great foundation for stellar industry leadership.” Surprising fact: “Spanish was my first language and I grew up outside of the U.S. in five Latin American countries.”


B BRENDA FERRARO Vice president of third-party risk // Prevalent //


Ferraro has a sector agnostic passion to strategically influence corporations to economize thirdparty programs with a focus on reducing risk across the globe. Ferraro was named one of the Top 25 Women Leaders in Cybersecurity of 2020. Lesson learned in 2020: “Diverse innovation is key to influencing others. Our new reality and way of working has created a blank slate to define how relationships and business can continue to thrive. Embracing the opportunities in a positive manner helps me to continue to lead with empathy and relevance.”


C TOMAS GORNY CEO // Nextiva // Gorny is a Polish-born American Entrepreneur. He is the co-founder, chairman, and CEO of UnitedWeb, a holdings company, and Nextiva, a cloud communications provider. Gorny has founded several successful technology companies, including IPOWER, Nextiva, and SiteLock. IPOWER sold to Warburg and Goldman Sachs for nearly $1 billion in 2011 and later went public. Gorny remains on the board of directors. Nextiva and Sitelock have been named the fastest-growing tech companies in Arizona. Personal strengths: “Determination, perseverance, and foresight. Once I have a vision, I don’t believe in limitations. Failure is free tuition, and the lessons I learn often inspire something better. Failure is part of the entrepreneurial path, but so is success - if you’re patient and hardworking.”

D ERIC MILLER Co-owner // PADT //


Miller is co-owner of Tempe-based PADT, which provides tools and services to companies who design and manufacture physical products. As co-founder of PADT in 1994, Miller was able to pursue his interests in Simulation, 3D printing, operations, and small business management. Personal strengths: “A constant, some would say obsessive, need to learn new skills has driven my growth and success in engineering, leadership, and business. Every new challenge I have faced has become an opportunity for growth.” Professional advice: “Learn to network professionally and technically. Every person you meet in your career may be a future supplier, customer, or connection to someone you need to know. Build relationships and maintain them.”

E RICK SMITH CEO and co-founder // Axon Enterprise // Smith is a technology pioneer with a vision to make the bullet obsolete. He founded the original company, TASER International, in 1993. As the TASER device became ubiquitous in law enforcement, Smith pushed the company beyond weapons technology and towards a broader purpose of matching technology to public safety needs to make the world a safer place. Attraction to industry: “In my early 20’s I was studying abroad in Europe, and two of my high school friends were shot and killed in a road rage incident. That ignited a passion in me to help solve the problem of gun violence. I was also a big Star Trek fan. So naturally, I thought: if we had access to something like a Phaser, or a similar non-lethal weapon, no one would need to fire metal bullets into each other anymore.”

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technology & manufacturing // MINING & NATURAL RESOURCES

A BRENT BERG General manager // Florence Copper // Berg is responsible for leading this high-tech copper production facility located in Pinal County from its current test phase operation into full commercial production. Berg has over 15 years’ experience in mining management and development. Role model: “A number of people in the mining industry have been exemplary role models and mentors. Jerry Grandy, Bob Steane, David Bronkhorst, Jacques Perron and Andy Thorne immediately come to mind. The one person that has had the greatest impact on my career is my dad. He taught me to work hard, treat people with respect and act with integrity each day.” Attraction to industry: “I was attracted by the tremendous economic impact of the mining industry and positive results that mines have on local communities.”


B THEODORE COOKE General manager // Central Arizona Project (CAP) // Cooke was appointed general manager in March 2016, reporting to the publicly-elected board of directors and is responsible for carrying out the board’s policy directives and overseeing all operational aspects of CAP, the largest water provider in Arizona. Cooke joined CAP in 1999 after an earlier career in utility-scale solar and geothermal power development and operations and corporate finance. He is currently a member of the Governor’s Water Augmentation, Innovation and Conservation Council. Attraction to industry: “I studied to be an industrial engineer, but ended up in finance by accident. I switched to utilities from manufacturing due to my interest in applied technology. Eventually, I became a Certified Management Accountant. The surprise is that I love where I ended up more than where I began.”


C NICK HARE President // Hexagon Mining // Hare joined Hexagon, a global leader in sensor, software and autonomous solutions, in 2016. He transformed Hexagon’s Mining division from legacy acquisitions to a balanced, integrated business that has recorded consecutive years of record growth. He is integral to the company’s vision of being the No. 1 smart technology partner for integrated life-of-mine solutions. Attraction to industry: “The biggest impact to me is knowing that our technology saves lives. It shapes how we transform the world through productivity, quality and sustainability.” Favorite book: “I enjoy business books about entrepreneurs founding their companies from the ground up through drive, determination and passion. Phil Knight’s ‘Shoe Dog’ is a recent favorite.”


D STEVE TRUSSELL Executive director // Arizona Mining Association // Trussell is executive director of the Arizona Rock Products Association (ARPA) and the Arizona Mining Association. As executive director of ARPA, he is responsible for the promotion and preservation of the sustainability of the rock and construction materials industry through active involvement in the community relations, regulatory, and political processes. For the last three years, the association has worked on regulatory reform and transparency legislation that will prove to be of tremendous benefit to all business sectors. Trussell has been a guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show, has been nominated for two national instructor of the year awards, and in 2010 was honored by the National Sand, Stone and Gravel Association as the State Association Executive of the Year.

E SIEGFRIED WEIDNER Head of exploration - North America // BHP // Weidner is a professional exploration geologist with 25 years of international experience in the Americas (Canada, Nevada, Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Peru) and with a proven track record of discoveries, project evaluations, project execution and advancements from greenfield to advanced stage and prefeasibility study. He has worked with varied geological environments focusing on copper, gold and silver projects, as well as exposure to zinc, lead and advanced diamond projects. Weidner has held senior management roles in the mineral industry within exploration and operations departments of junior and major multinational mining companies. He has diverse experiences leading teams of varied technical and cultural background in covering all aspects of the mineral exploration business. 246 ABL | Nominate at



DELIVERED BY CAP Central Arizona Project is committed to our mission to reliably deliver Colorado River water

to central and southern Arizona. CAP is critical infrastructure and our essential workers take pride in the ability to keep operations up and running to meet a vital need for Arizonans.

–CAP General Manager Ted Cooke


who’s who // CEO S

A SHERYL PALMER Chairman and CEO // Taylor Morrison Home Corporation // Palmer was appointed CEO of Taylor Morrison in 2007. Her resilience and resolve helped the company not only weather a global economic recession and housing market crash, but emerge from it on a robust growth trajectory. Palmer has presided over a series of major transformations, including four acquisitions — and one recent definitive merger agreement to acquire AV Homes — the sale of a Canadian operation, and the doubling of markets in the company’s portfolio. She led the company to its IPO in 2013 and then to becoming fully floated earlier this year, standing today as the nation’s sixth-largest public homebuilder. Personal strengths: “I like to think of myself as a humble and fervent leader who has been lucky enough to call Taylor Morrison my ‘home away from home’ for more than 12 years.”



B STEVE SANGHI CEO // Microchip Technology // Steve Sanghi has led Microchip Technology since 1990 and now is the longest serving CEO of a semiconductor company. Under Mr. Sanghi’s continued leadership, Microchip completed its 118th consecutive profitable quarter on March 31, 2020, an achievement unmatched in the semiconductor industry. In June 1995, Mr. Sanghi received an Arizona Entrepreneur of the Year award. Mr. Sanghi is the only CEO to win Executive of the Year award twice by Electronic Engineering Times. The Arizona Technology Council selected Mr. Sanghi as the winner of their 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award. Favorite book: “The best book I read was ‘Good to Great’ by Jim Collins. I adopted the teachings in the book and they have impacted my career immensely.”

C EDWARD SHOEN President, chairman, and CEO // Amerco (U-Haul International) //


Shoen grew up in the U-Haul organization and was first employed in 1971. He is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross, Harvard Business School and Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law. Shoen was chosen by the AMERCO board of directors as president in 1987 and has been leading the company ever since. Professional advice: “Set realistic goals with realistic time frames. Set a goal and go at it, understanding that nothing happens in 90 days or a year. It takes years to nurture the crop that feeds you today.” Source of pride: “Helping to keep self-moving and self-storage affordable, convenient and within the ‘I can do it’ envelope of most Americans.”

D JACK SINCLAIR CEO // Sprouts Farmers Market // D


Sinclair brings more than 35 years of experience in retail and grocery to Sprouts since joining the company in June 2019. He was previously chief executive officer of 99 Cents Only Stores, a premier discount retailer with over 350 locations in the U.S., since 2018. Prior to that, he was chief merchandising officer from 2015 to 2018. From 2007 to 2015, Sinclair was the executive vice president of the U.S. Grocery Division of Walmart, Inc., where he led all aspects of Walmart’s U.S. grocery business at its more than 4,000 stores, which generated substantial growth under his leadership through a focus on local assortment and fresh foods. Sinclair also spent 14 years at Safeway in London, where he was responsible for operations, merchandising and marketing for over 450 Safeway locations.

E J.K. SYMANCYK CEO // PetSmart // Symancyk is the CEO of PetSmart and a member of the company’s board of directors. Having joined the retailer in June 2018, he brings 25 years of deep operational experience across all areas of retail, including merchandising, consumer brand marketing, proprietary brands, services and ecommerce. Throughout his career, he has demonstrated his ability to lead companies, driving profitable growth and improving the organizational performance of internal teams at large, multichannel consumer businesses. Previously, Symancyk served as the president and CEO of Academy Sports + Outdoors and president of Meijer. He also held management positions at Walmart Stores, including Sam’s Club and Walmart International.

248 ABL | Nominate at

CFO S // who’s who

A ADRIAN BROWN Managing director, international and chief financial officer AeroGuard Flight Training Center //


Brown is an accomplished CFO and operations executive with international experience across the US, Europe and Asia. He has a strong track record of integrating finance disciplines with business operations to drive enhanced enterprise value and performance. Favorite book: “‘Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less,’ by Greg McKeown , and not just because Greg shares my British roots! In today’s extremely busy world where it is easy to get overwhelmed in work and life, this book gives real life practical advice on how to focus on what really matters.” Surprising fact: “I have eaten some interesting and novel foods having lived around the world, chicken’s feet in China is one of the standouts.”


B MARK JOOS Executive vice president and chief financial officer CopperPoint Insurance Companies // Joos is responsible for overseeing all finance functions across the enterprise. This includes financial reporting and planning, general and operational accounting, actuarial, pricing, reserving, reinsurance and enterprise risk management, in addition to overseeing the company’s chief investment officer. Throughout the 2018 integration of PacificComp to the CopperPoint Family of Insurance Companies, Joos had an integral role in bringing two finance organizations, systems and processes and people together. Specific accomplishments include converting the general ledger, fixed assets, payable systems and reviewing planning tools and processes. These efforts led to a very successful acquisition and integration of PacificComp.



C ELIZABETH KINSLEY Chief financial officer // TriWest Healthcare Alliance // Kinsley joined TriWest in 1998, and served in the role of senior vice president of finance from 20052013. As CFO, she is responsible for accounting, treasury, tax, claims administration, facilities, and data management. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to the accounting industry because my father was a CPA and he seemed to enjoy his job and had lots of stories to tell. I realized over time that keeping and growing talented individuals is critical to the overall internal controls environment.” Favorite book: “A book that I enjoyed was ‘Start With Why,’ by Simon Sinek because if people focus on why something needs to be done versus just getting it done, they will likely come up with an approach that is not only efficient, but ethical and long lasting.”

D STEVEN REICHLING Chief financial officer // Accelerate Diagnostics // In addition to being CFO, Reichling is the head of Accelerate Diagnostics’ manufacturing, operations, legal and IT groups, thus providing leadership across nearly the entire enterprise. Reichling has contributed enormous value to Accelerate by leading multiple successful rounds of fund raising. This capital has supported the development and commercialization of Accelerate’s life-saving technology, the Accelerate Pheno system. Reichling and his team successfully raised $175 million in convertible senior notes in 2018, $89 million in proceeds from a common stock public offering in 2017, and $109 million in proceeds from a common stock public offering in 2016.


E HILLA SFERRUZZA Executive vice president and chief financial officer Meritage Homes Corporation // Sferruzza is a subject matter expert on residential construction and land acquisition, debt and equity capital transactions, M&A and divesture structures, financial modeling, budgeting and forecasting, and process improvement opportunities. Sferruzza has been influential in the development and implementation of Meritage’s strategic pivot to focus on the entry-level and first move-up homebuyer segments exclusively, by streamlining the business to reduce costs, be more efficient and maximize Meritage’s growth and profitability in a competitive market. Less than three years into the shift, Meritage is already outperforming the industry as a result of the successful execution of its strategy. Nominate at | ABL 249


A DENNY BARNEY President and CEO // PHX East Valley Partnership // Barney is president and CEO of the PHX East Valley Partnership, a non-partisan coalition of civic, business, education and political leaders dedicated to economic development and promotion of the region. He balances that role with his work as principal of ARCUS Private Capital Solutions. Personal strengths: “I am fortunate to be able to look at a situation and see a solution, even when one doesn’t seem readily apparent. I also enjoy working alongside others as part of a larger team whose combined and concerted effort makes a positive, measurable difference in our community.” Professional advice: “Those entering the field should seize opportunities to talk about and celebrate all that’s good in their city, region or state, while doing all they can to make business and the quality of life there even better.”



B LORI COLLINS Deputy director of economic development // City of Mesa // Collins joined the City of Mesa Economic Development team in September 2019 as deputy director. Her focus is on development priorities related to Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, southeast Mesa and other economic development projects of strategic importance to the City. Previously, Collins worked for the City of Phoenix as the deputy director of economic development with responsibility for business attraction, focusing specifically on developing and implementing strategies to encourage investment and drive job growth. She assisted numerous noteworthy companies to locate in Phoenix including Stitch Fix, Farmers Insurance, Central Admixture Pharmacy Services (CAPS), and Nikola Motor Company.

C VICTOR GONZALEZ Economic development director // Town of Sahuarita // Gonzalez provides leadership and coordinates the efforts for the town’s economic, marketing and place-making strategies as well as establishing programming for small businesses. Gonzalez is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD), a graduate of the University of Arizona and the Economic Development Institute by the University of Oklahoma. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to the industry as an undergraduate at the University of Arizona studying regional development. The program provided a heightened awareness of the economic development profession. Soon after, I began to intern with what was at the time the Greater Tucson Economic Council.” Surprising fact: “I currently serve as the congressional worship leader for the Spanish Ministry at Tucson Baptist Church.”


D SINTRA HOFFMAN President and CEO // WESTMARC // Hoffman’s career includes more than 20 years in local, state and federal government. Prior to joining WESTMARC, she served as assistant division director for ADOT and deputy city manager and intergovernmental relations director for the City of Surprise. Her career has focused on building sustainable relationships with elected and business leaders in Arizona. She has been recognized for successful transportation lobbying and problem solving. Personal strengths: “People describe me as energetic, tenacious and enthusiastic. I describe myself as a team player and connector. This combination attracts people to me, and me to people with great ideas and resources to accomplish amazing things for our community. This perfect formula has yielded many successes throughout my career.”


E MIGNONNE HOLLIS Executive director // Arizona Regional Economic Development Foundation Hollis serves on the Canyon Vista Medical Center board, chairs the public policy committee of the International Economic Development Council and serves as the president of the Arizona Association for Economic Development. In 2014, she was named economic developer of the year and in 2017 her organization was named small organization of the year. Attraction to industry: “Most of us in economic development will tell you, we did not chose the industry — the industry chose us. I am surprised with how much I continue to learn and grow all while continuing to love the difference this industry has on communities.” Favorite book: “‘The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap between Rich & Poor in an Interconnected World.’ The author always knew she wanted to make a difference and she never took no for an answer.” 250 ABL | Nominate at


who’s who // EDUCATION

A RITA CHENG President // Northern Arizona University //



Cheng is the president of Northern Arizona University, a high research university with $58 million in research and development expenditures. She has secured NAU’s national reputation for thriving in the changing world of higher education and for the high quality educational experience provided to all NAU students. Attraction to industry: “My own life experiences have taught me that higher education can transform lives and open unexpected opportunities. Advances in technology have improved greatly, allowing students from all over the globe and corners of the U.S. to collaborate and enrich the student experience.” Favorite book: “‘The Leadership Challenge: How to Make Extraordinary Things Happen in Organizations,’ by James Kouzes and Barry Posner was an important book on my path to leadership.”

B MICHAEL CROW President // Arizona State University // C


Crow became the 16th president of ASU on July 1, 2002. He is guiding the transformation of ASU into one of the nation’s leading public metropolitan research universities, an institution that combines the highest levels of academic excellence, inclusiveness to a broad demographic and maximum societal impact. Attraction to industry: “I saw early that education propelled progress, but that inequities in access and archaic limitations on what you could study held people back from achieving their highest potential. I wanted to change that. I’m still surprised that I still have to spend time explaining the value of education to society.” Surprising fact: “My upbringing was pretty nomadic as part of a military family. By the time I was 18, I had attended 18 different public schools.”

C STEVEN GONZALES Interim chancellor // Maricopa County Community Colleges // Role model: “I’ve been fortunate to have many professional role models and mentors throughout my career. Each of them have always pointed out qualities that I didn’t see in myself encouraging me to take the next step. I think of the teachers, coaches, colleagues and leaders in my life that have helped mold me. My parents, however, have been my greatest role models.” Attraction to industry: “The opportunity to help others become educated. Over and over again, higher education attainment has proven to be the greatest chance that many have to create an outlook that is more promising than generations before them. Constantly having to defend the value of an education is something that surprises me — I’ve been doing so for nearly 25 years.” D

D BRIAN MUELLER President // Grand Canyon University // Mueller joined Grand Canyon University in 2008 to usher in a new era for the institution. Since that time, GCU has transformed from a small, financially-troubled school to one of the largest and most innovative universities in the country. Mueller envisions GCU not just as an institution for higher learning, but as an instrument for change. Personal strengths: “I had the good fortune of attending schools where I had really good teachers and coaches who instilled my love for learning. As a result of that, I became a teacher and coach and developed capabilities related to public speaking, motivation, leadership and team-building.” Professional advice: “To lead effectively, you must assemble a team of highly committed, loyal people who are creative, outcomes-oriented and willing to take significant risks.”

E DR. ROBERT ROBBINS President // University of Arizona // Robbins is the 22nd president of the University of Arizona. From 2012 - 2016, he served as CEO of the Texas Medical Center, after enjoying a 20-year faculty career at Stanford University School of Medicine, where he was chairman of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery and founding director of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute. Role model: “The University of Arizona has had excellent leaders in the past, and I have been fortunate to have President John Schaefer and President Peter Likins and their insight and guidance throughout my time here at the University. I hope to build on their foundation of excellence.” Favorite book: “‘The Fourth Industrial Revolution,’ by Klaus Schwab had a huge impact on how I envision the University of Arizona’s future.” 252 ABL | Nominate at

Learn, Stay, Enjoy and Discover! Founded in 1949, GCU is Arizona’s premier provider of private Christian education. Today, we’ve expanded and trasformed our campus into the beating heart of an ever-growing city center. If you’re looking for family fun in the heart of the city, it’s time to experience Lope Country.





More than 200 academic programs in high demand employment fields.

Student-led hotel defined by world-class amenities and service.

Modern urban cuisine of Canyon 49 Grill, championship links at GCU Golf Course and NCAA Division I home games powered by legendary Lope Nation.

Wide-open opportunities for career, community and business innovation.

For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program and other important information, please visit our website at Please note, not all GCU programs are available in all states and in all learning modalities. Program availability is contingent on student enrollment. Grand Canyon University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (800-621-7440; Important policy information is available in the University Policy Handbook at GCU, while reserving its lawful rights in light of its Christian mission, is committed to maintaining an academic environment that is free from unlawful discrimination. Further detail on GCU’s Non-Discrimination policies can be found at The information printed in this material is accurate as of DECEMBER 2019. For the most up-to-date information about admission requirements, tuition, scholarships and more, visit ©2020 Grand Canyon University 19GPS0057


A EDWARD BASHA III President, CEO, chairman of the board // Bashas’ Family of Stores //


Basha leads Bashas’ Family of Stores – the family-owned grocer that operates Bashas’, Food City, AJ’s Fine Foods, Sportsman’s Fine Wines & Spirits, Eddie’s Country Store, and Bashas’ Diné supermarkets. He is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of more than 120 grocery stores and more than 8,000 members (employees). Attraction to industry: “I was not attracted to the industry. I was brainwashed by my great aunts. Every time they asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, regardless of my response they would express their disappointment and state, ‘Oh no, honey, you want to go into the family business.’” Favorite book: “I enjoy the classics. Two specifically are Dickens for his characterization and Shakespeare for his insights into the human condition.”


B JONVIEVE BRYANT Owner and principal // Bryant Commercial Real Estate // With a background in redevelopment and long-range planning, Bryant is well positioned in her role as owner and principal of Bryant Commercial Real Estate. Her primary duties include landlord and tenant representation. She takes great pride in being able to see the accomplishments and business experience she provides to her clients in assisting them with site selection and lease negotiations. Bryant graduated from Arizona State University in 2012 with a bachelor of science degree in urban planning. The skills that she has acquired over the past five years have allowed her to start BCRE with her partner and mother, Adrienne Bryant, who has 13 years’ experience in the field of commercial real estate. Professional advice: “Stay focused and remain humble.”

C WILLIE ITULE Founder and CEO // Willie Itule Produce //


Itule and his wife, Lynn, launched Willie Itule Produce in 1979. For 40 years, the produce distribution company has served restaurants, schools, hospitals, and commissaries across Arizona with fresh fruits and vegetables. The Willie Itule Produce team has grown to more than a 100-person company based at their Phoenix warehouse. As the company has grown, Willie and Lynn have maintained a steadfast commitment to family, service, and quality. Personal strengths: “Building relationships is how I got started in the produce business and nurturing them has been part of the secret to long-term success. Growing and nurturing a network has created a lot of opportunities over the years, and creating opportunities for others has been rewarding.”

D ROBERTA “SISSIE” ROBERTS CEO // Chas Roberts A /C & Plumbing //




Roberts Shank took over the business after her father’s passing in 1999. She overcame resistance to being a female leader in construction by making some hard choices. Her philosophy is that no one person is more important than the success of the whole. She serves on the Knight-Swift board of directors and the AMERCO (U-haul) advisory board. Personal strengths: “Integrity, compassion, and determination. Those qualities have helped me make difficult decisions in bad times, kept me from being selfish in good times, and gave me strength in dealing with both.” Professional advice: “Don’t let your personal feelings undermine your decision making processes. It sometimes is difficult to separate being right, from doing right. Do right.”

E RIC SERRANO President and CEO // Serrano’s Mexican Restaurants // As president and CEO of Chandler-based Serrano’s Mexican Restaurants, Serrano oversees the operations of all five restaurant locations. Serrano joined the family business in 1984 when his father asked him to open their second restaurant location in Tempe. Through years of hard work and dedication, he moved his way up to general manager of operations in the 1990s and in 2003, he was promoted to president and CEO. Attraction to industry: “The opportunity to experience growth in a multigenerational family business is what initially attracted me to the restaurant industry. What has most surprised me is the way that each opening of a restaurant feels like a child is born, essentially bringing on a new life that we are tasked with sustaining and nurturing to prosperity.”

254 ABL | Nominate at


A LEAH FREED Shareholder // Ogletree Deakins // Freed has exclusively practiced management-side labor and employment law throughout her career. Ms. Freed is a skilled and experienced litigator who regularly defends employers against claims of race, gender, disability, and age discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination, FMLA claims, and wage and hour violations before federal and state courts and various administrative agencies. Personal qualities: “I think I have a good ability to relate to others, so I can put myself in the place of my clients and try to understand and anticipate their needs. I also listen more than I talk which really does help me focus on my clients’ needs and provide them with the individualized service they need.”



B KATE GALLEGO Mayor // City of Phoenix // Gallego serves as the 61st mayor of the fifth largest city in the US. Prior to being elected mayor of Phoenix in 2019, Gallego worked on economic development and strategic planning for the Salt River Project and served on the Phoenix City Council for five years representing District 8. Gallego received a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from Harvard University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Pennsylvania. Gallego is the city’s second female mayor. Attraction to industry: “I realized that I could complain about the shortcomings of our city or I could run for office and offer solutions. I wasn’t sure how people would react to a young, single mom running for office, but I’ve been gratified to find that most people appreciate the perspective I bring to the table.”

C HEIDI JANNENGA Co-founder and chief clinical officer // WebPT //



Dr. Heidi Jannenga, PT, DPT, ATC, is the co-founder and chief clinical officer of WebPT, the leading rehab therapy software. Jannenga previously was a physical therapist and clinic director for over 15 years and has since led WebPT through exponential growth, earning it eight consecutive Inc. 5000 rankings. Today, WebPT is the fastest-growing rehab therapy software in the country with more than 500 employees serving over 90,000 customers at more than 20,000 clinics. Attraction to industry: “The tech industry wasn’t actually on my radar. I was a physical therapist — a profession I remain deeply passionate about. But after developing a solution —originally intended just for my clinic — that was revolutionizing the way PTs practiced, I knew this was my path. That’s been the biggest surprise.”

D CAROL MAY CEO and owner // Wisdom Natural Brands //


May leads Wisdom Natural Brands, makers of plant-based, premium, award-winning SweetLeaf Stevia, Monk Fruit Sweeteners, Wisdom of the Ancients herbal teas, and Sugar-Free Syrups. Attraction to industry: “I was attracted to the Natural Products Industry because there was a need to support people’s healthy choices from plant-based products. People need support to achieve better nutrition. It’s been rewarding to help people reduce added sugars with our products which are tools to reduce risks on bodily systems.” Favorite book: “‘The Innovator’s Solution,’ by Clayton Christensen. It gave me an understanding of the importance to take risks in order to develop new products and services, to meet challenges. Blessing peoples’ lives and meeting the needs they face truly makes the world a better place.”

E REGINA ROMERO Mayor // City of Tucson // In 2019, Romero became the first-ever female and first-ever Latina mayor of Tucson. Romero was raised in Somerton, Arizona. She graduated from Kofa High School in Yuma and the University of Arizona. Lesson learned in 2020: “I am repeatedly reminded of this, especially over the last year: follow your inner voice when something feels off or spot on. Be bold and act courageously. If you miss the mark, acknowledge it, get up and continue to move forward. Build a team that believes in a cause and effecting change. Together, you can move mountains.” Professional advice: “Strive to be a leader in any industry. We need more women leaders. Always, be kind and honest to yourself and your moral compass. Focus on short-term and longterm goals. Do not be distracted by noise around you.” ABL 255


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