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Piper Trust expands sustainable health initiative

January 09, 2012

The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust has announced grants totaling $4.7 million – an infusion of funds for the nonprofit community that will advance their work in the areas of arts and culture, services for disadvantaged children, youth mentoring, higher education research initiatives and civic engagement opportunities for older adults. A $3 million grant will expand the Center for Sustainable Health at Arizona State University.

“Virginia Galvin Piper, who would have been 100 years old this past December [December 7, 2011], has had her grantmaking legacy in Maricopa County for 11 years now through Piper Trust. The diversity and quality shown in today’s collection of grant awards is a meaningful representation of Mrs. Piper’s wishes to strengthen and grow our community – she would be pleased,” said Judy Jolley Mohraz, president and CEO, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.

The Trust’s investment to expand ASU’s Center for Sustainable Health will further the Center’s innovative work addressing the collective power on how technology, economics and human behavior – when functioning effectively together – can greatly improve health outcomes and reduce the financial and human cost of disease. A key focus of the Center’s efforts with the grant will be healthy aging – a core area of engagement for Piper Trust.

“It’s imperative that health systems shift from an expensive and ineffective late-stage response to an effective prevention and early detection approach to health,” said Michael Birt, director, Center for Sustainable Health, Biodesign Institute, ASU. “We need to connect the elements of a health system – people, science, industry and policy – and create a new model that values quality, cost-effective, preventative healthcare focused on improving health outcomes. Piper Trust’s leadership and investment in this type of innovation and action will contribute to the transformation of health systems locally and globally.”

Another significant community impact will come from a $245,000 grant award to expand the City of Tempe’s Experience Corps project (Experience Corps is a national leader in engaging older adult tutors to improve Kindergarten through third grade student literacy in disadvantaged schools). Piper Trust’s investment will enable the City of Tempe to serve 750 children in 12 schools by engaging 100 older adults as tutors and mentors.

Grants awarded August through December 2011 include 
(listed by grantmaking area):


Alliance for Audience: Assess and develop a plan for the organization’s technology needs (
$16,500, 3 months)

Fountain Hills Community Theater: Replace lighting and sound equipment on the Main Stage and Youth Theater ($55,500, 12 months)

Musical Instrument Museum: Develop and execute a targeted marketing and communications campaign. ($50,000, 12 months)


Assistance League of Phoenix: 
Establish an Executive Director position and expand a school clothing program serving disadvantaged children ($150,000, 36 months)

Back to School Clothing Drive: Expand a school uniform program serving disadvantaged children (
$155,000, 12 months)


Arizona State University Foundation*: Support of Morrison Institute for Public Policy’s “Arizona Directions” research project ($10,000, 12 months)

Greater Phoenix Youth at Risk, Inc.: Acquire and integrate “Arizona Quest for Kids” mentoring program. ($200,000, 24 months)


Arizona State University Foundation*: Expand ASU’s Center for Sustainable Health ($3,000,000, 36 months)


City of Tempe Community Services Department: 
Provide “Experience Corps” program in 12 schools (
$245,000, 36 months)

Experience Matters Consortium*: 
Develop and implement a staffing plan, funding strategy and six “Encore Fellowships” (
$373,500, 36 months)


Arizona Endowment Building Planning Initiative: Develop and implement the “Planned Giving and Endowment Building Educational Continuum” curriculum. ($150,000, 36 months)

Piper Fellows Program – 2011 Fellows’ Sabbaticals

Provide $40,000 for each sabbatical over 12 months; fellowships support the exploration of leadership development practices, educational programs and best practice sites around the country.

Back to School Clothing Drive: Karl Gentles, executive director
Desert Botanical Garden: MaryLynn Mack, deputy director
Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona: Barbara DuVal Fenster, executive director
Southwest Shakespeare Company: Jared Sakren, producing artistic director
UMOM New Day Centers: Darlene Newsom, CEO

Piper Fellows Program – Organizational Enhancement Awards

Support specific projects that address opportunities or challenges facing Piper Fellows’ organizations.

• Adelante Healthcare: 
Support for healthcare innovation consulting services through “The Center for Health Design/Pebble Project” and a research intern (
$49,320, 12 months)

The Beatitudes Campus: Expand the internal non-medical home care program to older adults living outside the retirement campus (
$50,000, 12 months)

*A grant originally awarded to a foundation or 501c3 organization that funds an agreed upon program or product.

Media contact:
Karen Leland,