ASU Staff Helping Staff donations help people 'stand shoulder to shoulder' with those in need

March 19, 2018

Carloyn Starr has a simple plan for how she can help her fellow Arizona State University staff members.

“If I stop drinking a soda a day, that money can go toward ASU’s Staff Helping Staff Fund and potentially change one of my coworker’s lives,” said Starr, senior program coordinator of Global Outreach and Extended Education on ASU’s Polytechnic campus. A senior program coordinator on ASU’s Polytechnic Campus, Carolyn Starr displays a photo of her mother who she was able to visit with the help of the Staff Helping Staff Fund. Carolyn Starr, senior program coordinator on ASU’s Polytechnic campus, displays a photo of her mother who she was able to visit with the help of the Staff Helping Staff Fund. Photo by Philamer Batangan Download Full Image

A previous recipient of funds from Staff Helping Staff, Starr uses this rationalization in her own commitment to pay forward what she received from the fund. 

Staff Helping Staff provides financial assistance to full-time ASU staff in need. All donations directly benefit ASU staff members who face unexpected emergencies and apply for aid.

“As staff members, this provides an opportunity to donate to a fund that helps those we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with every day,” said Patricia Odle, ASU Staff Council treasurer. 

Joel Hansen, a carpenter for ASU’s Tempe campus carpentry services, looked to Staff Helping Staff when a torn ACL prevented him from working for three months.

“I was kind of in a bad spot but that’s when I remembered about Staff Helping Staff and they really helped me out when I needed it,” he said.

A carpenter for ASU’s Tempe campus, Joel Hansen comes back to work after the Staff Helping Staff Fund eased his recovery from a torn ACL.

A carpenter for ASU’s Tempe campus, Joel Hansen comes back to work after the Staff Helping Staff Fund eased his recovery from a torn ACL. Photo by Philamer Batangan

A donor himself prior to his accident, Hansen already knew about the Staff Helping Staff fund. With medical bills and no paycheck, he reached out for assistance on his mortgage payment.

“I’d donated to [the fund but] I didn’t realize how valuable it was until I needed help,” Hansen said.

Starr didn’t learn about the program until her mother fell gravely ill. With more than a thousand miles between them, Starr urgently needed to get to her mother’s bedside but didn’t have the means. With support from the Staff Helping Staff fund, Starr was able to be with her mother.

“It makes me tear up just thinking that my fellow staff members said as a collective, ‘Hey, we’re going to chip in and we’re going to send you to your mom,’” Starr recalled.  “I came home and immediately signed up to have money taken out of my paycheck. It’s a neat feeling knowing that I have been able to give back to that fund so much more than it ever gave me.”

Stephen Potter, ASU Staff Council president, states that more than 20 people donate to the Staff Helping Staff fund every pay period, and some give one-time gifts each year, which has allowed the fund to help 30 staff members to date.

“There’s no hard rule,” Potter said, “but awards generally range between $500 and $750. It really depends on the need.”

“I’d donated to [the fund but] I didn’t realize how valuable it was until I needed help.” 
— Joel Hanson, ASU Tempe campus carpentry services

In response to Campaign ASU 2020, the Staff Council has committed themselves to increase and maintain a balance of at least $10,000 in the fund, which is managed by the ASU Foundation. To ensure confidentiality, all applications go to the employee assistance office; the Staff Council’s Scholarship and Fundraising Committee then screens the redacted applications. Gifts to the fund are tax deductible and can be made directly from ASU employee paychecks by signing up for a payroll deduction, which can be as little as $2.50 per paycheck.

“This is one of the most rewarding programs that the council does. So we hope to make the fund more visible, both to increase donations and to allow more people to benefit from it,” Potter said.

They will push to expand the program “in hopes that [we] would never have to turn anyone away,” Odle added. “As the staff continues to grow with the growth of our university, the needs of our fund grow as well.”

For more information about the Staff Helping Staff Fund, visit To make a donation to the Staff Helping Staff Fund, visit To provide a sustained gift through payroll deduction, go here.

Written by Shannon Ganzer, student writer/editor, ASU Enterprise Partners

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ASU mourns the loss of David Lincoln, benefactor and ASU trustee

March 19, 2018

Firm believer in the Golden Rule, Lincoln embraced the ideal of service to the community

Many people believe in the Golden Rule: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

Few, however, adhered to that principle as closely as did David Lincoln, a successful entrepreneur and business owner known not only for his business acumen, but also for his unwavering commitment to advancing the common good.

Lincoln, who passed away March 16, spent his lifetime advancing the ideals of good behavior and good ethics through his personal example and through generosity to a breadth of causes, including higher education at Arizona State University. He was 92.

Together with his wife, JoanMFA '73, he helped establish ASU’s Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics, a hub and catalyst for research that advances a broad understanding of ethical behavior.

The Lincolns built upon their support for the Lincoln Center by establishing an endowment to support Lincoln professors and fellows across the university in a variety of disciplines, and an endowed chair in ethics, all designed to cultivate outstanding faculty with an interest in applied ethics; and the Lincoln Scholars program, which supports students who are committed to exploring the moral and ethical dimensions of complex societal challenges.

He sought to advance and uphold the values he exhibited as founder of Lincoln Laser, where in the 1970s he developed a precision cutting technology that was embraced by industries such as aerospace and agriculture.

When running his company, he adopted the guiding principles set by his father and mother, John C. and Helen Lincoln — founders of the John C. Lincoln Health Network of hospitals, medical facilities, physicians, and outreach programs across Arizona — to treat employees fairly.

“Good ethics is good business,” he would often say.

“David Lincoln changed our society for the better,” ASU President Michael M. Crow said. “His commitment to ethics, tolerance and respect, and to civic involvement shaped ASU’s vision to be a university that takes fundamental responsibility for the communities we serve. His belief that good ethics mean good business governs the aspirations of many students, faculty, and staff. ASU mourns his loss.”

The Lincolns' investments in higher education at ASU weren’t confined to ethics education. Their gifts, like their interests, spanned many arenas. Joan, who died in 2016, was an accomplished ceramicist who was active in the arts community.

The Lincolns supported ASU’s Ceramics Research Center and established the Joan R. Lincoln Endowed Professor of Ceramics at ASU. They also supported the ASU Art Museum, the SchoolThe School of Art, and the School of Film, Dance and Theatre are part of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. of Art, and the School of Film, Dance and Theatre.

Other areas include the Center for the Study of Religion and Conflict, the Institute for Social Science Research, ASU Library, the W. P. Carey School of Business, the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, and the Thunderbird School of Global Management.

Their Chautauqua-Lincoln Travel Fellowship allows ASU students to attend the Chautauqua Institute in New York, where they explore educational, recreational, spiritual and artistic endeavors.

“For David, economic success was a path to generosity, and we are grateful that he and Joan saw ASU as a place where they could promote the values they held so dear,” said Gretchen Buhlig, CEO of the ASU Foundation.

“We see the impact of their generosity across our campus — in the arts, in business education, in the success of our students. And that impact grows as our graduates go out into the world and make a difference in their own communities. David and Joan truly did leave a legacy.”

A dedicated volunteer, Lincoln served as a trustee of ASU, where he embraced the university’s mission to execute its charter principles of accessibility, excellence and impact to the community. ASU trustees are advocates, advisors, and investors committed to the success of the university.

In addition to his support for higher education at ASU, Lincoln devoted extensive service to various boards and foundations across the Valley, including to the health network his family founded. Joan Lincoln served as Paradise Valley mayor, vice mayor and city councilmember. 

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6th annual Sun Devil Giving Day on tap for ASU

What will you give on #SunDevilGiving Day?
March 16, 2018

All members of the ASU community are invited to give to the areas of the university they care most about on March 22

If it's late March and you hear cheers and boos coming from Stuart Rice's office, don't be too alarmed.

Odds are that the Arizona State University graduate student and EdPlus creative designer is simply reacting to a recent donation made on Sun Devil Giving Day, his various mood swings coming as he tracks the contributions made either to his school — the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College — or another college following closely behind his. 

"Last year I got really annoyed at the law college, but cheered when a large donation came through for Mary Lou Fulton," Rice said. "I know it's childish, but it's part of the fun."

Rice was one of over 3,000 donors whose gifts totaled $3,222,522 on Giving Day one year ago. The Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ended up leading the way, seeing its donations tally over $1.45 million.

Last year saw an increase from the nearly 2,600 donors that gave in 2016, and ASU is hoping to see that number grow again when Giving Day 2018 rolls around on March 22.

"It is an important day for ASU in the way it shows [the] commitment and impact that Sun Devils can provide," said Patrick Hanson, an ASU student and Rice's spouse.

In the past, Hanson has also donated to the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, as well as the Schoolpart of the College of Public Service and Community Solutions of Community Resources and Development, where he is a nonprofit leadership and management major.

"Sun Devil Giving Day is a great way for me to give back to my community of Sun Devils," he said.

This year will mark the university's sixth annual Giving Day, which started as a way to celebrate and encourage gifts in support of ASU. All members of the ASU community — alumni, parents, fans, friends, faculty, staff and students — are invited to give to the areas of the university they care most about. 

The ASU Foundation later came up with the idea of turning the day into a competition between the university's different colleges and schools. The community, team-style aspect that the day has taken on keeps things entertaining for Rice and others. 

"Who doesn’t like a challenge?" Rice said.

He and Hanson start their Sun Devil Giving Day by waking up and posting the initative on their social media accounts. After that, it's time to donate and follow the Giving Day tracker.

"It’s all about the impact of a lot of people moving the needle in the same direction," Rice said. "Even though giving at any time of the year helps the university carry out its charter, Sun Devil Giving Day makes it a community process." 

"[It's] a single day that can show an instant measurable way of giving," Hanson said.

Sun Devil Giving Day runs from midnight to 11:59 p.m. March 22 and donations are made on the website or secured through the Sun Devil Giving outreach center (Tell-a-Devil Network). The site will display a real-time dashboard showing the total amount of donors and which units have collected the most money.

Gifts will be deposited with the ASU Foundation and may be considered a charitable contribution. For more information or to donate, visit

Top photo: Stuart Rice holds up a sticky note indicating that he will be donating to the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College on Sun Devil Giving Day. Photo by Deanna Dent/ASUNow

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Diverse minds to celebrate opening of Barrett & O’Connor Washington Center

March 5, 2018

'Our job is not to argue politics. ... Our job is to talk about the future,' Crow says ahead of weeklong series of panels showing breadth of ASU presence in Washington, DC

Many universities have a presence in Washington, D.C.: a lobbyist, an internship coordinator, or a few folks who hand out swag and try to wrangle money out of federal agencies.

But Arizona State University is a presence in Washington, D.C., a place where top researchers share their insights with leaders who create policy and a catalyst for tangible change in an environment that is often synonymous with partisan dysfunction.

“Our job is not to argue politics, or to argue for this or for that,” Michael M. Crow, ASU’s president, said. “Our job is to talk about the future. The one place you need to be to carry out the conversation, to think about new ideas and to bring everyone together is Washington, because everyone is there from everywhere, all over the United States and all over the world.”

ASU’s presence, though already many years in action, is getting a tangible symbol of its commitment to turning academic research into motion, with the grand opening of the Ambassador Barbara Barrett & Justice Sandra Day O’Connor Washington Center at Arizona State University.

The 32,000-square-foot, eight-story center is in a historic building at 1800 I St. NW, adjacent to the World Bank and two blocks from the White House. The new building, and ASU’s overall work in Washington, will be celebrated with a series of events the week of March 12.

A resource for policymakers

ASU has long hosted students, faculty and staff in Washington, D.C. With the new building, the university will have space to expand the offerings of the initiatives based there, including the McCain Institute for International Leadership, the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Cronkite News/Arizona PBS Washington Bureau, the Academy for Innovative Higher Education Leadership, the Center on the Future of War and the Global Security Initiative, among others.

The McCain Institute convenes prominent politicians and academics from around the world to focus on new models for character-driven global leadership. Through a series of talks, debates and forums, the institute, which identifies itself as a “do tank,” as opposed to a think tank, plays a unique role in the Washington establishment, bringing fresh thinking to seemingly intractable problems.

“Being centered in a cutting-edge, stand-alone building in downtown D.C. concentrates attention from outside the ASU family while bringing together all sorts of possibilities from within — that’s helpful when you want to make waves and impact in Washington with meaning far beyond,” said Luke Knittig, senior director of communications for the McCain Institute.

Also in the building is the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes, which is focused on bridging the gap between academic knowledge and real-world practice by fostering interaction with decision makers and also with the public. The nonprofit think tank was co-founded by Crow and Daniel Sarewitz, the current co-director.

The consortium studies how regular people can play a role in scientific research and technology, according to Mahmud Farooque, the associate director.

“We are trying to move from what is called ‘input-output science policy,’ meaning how much money and postdocs or papers are published, versus what kind of real impact are we having in society for which we’re making this public investment?” he said.

“What it amounts to is engagement with a very long-term goal,” Farooque said. “We’re not looking for a change overnight. We’re talking about how we improve the architecture of our design so we have a long-term positive impact.”

HYSA opening

Farooque said that being in Washington, D.C., is a natural fit for the center, which runs a popular series of breakfast seminars.

“One of the challenges with the old building was that we could not host large events,” he said. The additional classroom space will allow more workshops for science and engineering graduate students, called “Science Outside the Lab.”

“We are very excited to be in this location, where the action is,” he said.

The newly renovated building, which will be referred to as the “Barrett & O’Connor Washington Center,” is named after two groundbreaking Arizona women. O’Connor made history in 1981 as the first woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. Barrett, a three-time ASU graduate, was the first female Republican candidate for governor in Arizona and is the former U.S. ambassador to Finland. The center’s renovation was funded in part by a Campaign ASU 2020 gift from Barrett and her husband, Craig Barrett.

Student opportunities

ASU’s base in Washington, D.C., offers unique opportunities for students. Jordan Brunner, a third-year student in the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at ASU, is hoping to launch a career in Washington after spending a semester there last year in the International Rule of Law and Security program (formerly known as the Rule of Law and Governance program). He interned at the Brookings Institution, a research think tank, and took classes at night, including a course in which the students learned to function as embassy staff.

“We simulated what it would really be like to give reports, to be ready to understand and respond with the correct information,” said Brunner, who acted as the general counsel. The class presented to State Department employees and got feedback on their performance.

At his Brookings Institution internship, Brunner wrote articles about national-security issues such as climate change and the National Security Agency.

“I worked with people who had been in D.C. a long time and were able to put in perspective what was happening. One of my bosses would say, ‘This is how this operates in real life.’ ”

Brunner said the experience was eye-opening.

“A lot of people think everything in D.C. has to be related to being a Democrat or a Republican, but the skills I learned were not political.”

ASU student journalist Noelle Lilley at work in Washington

ASU student journalist Noelle Lilley reported from the Cronkite News Washington, D.C., bureau last summer and got to see the political process up close. Courtesy of Noelle Lilley

ASU senior Noelle Lilley was the only journalist on site when shooting broke out at a baseball practice attended by members of Congress last summer. Lilley, reporting from the Cronkite News Washington, D.C., bureau, was interviewing Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake.

The shooting was dramatic breaking news, but Lilley also got to cover events like the national spelling bee and to see the political process up close.

“It gives you a much clearer perspective,” she said. “People wonder, ‘Why doesn’t Congress just fix this problem?’ But you get to see the intricacies and nuances behind U.S. politics and you don’t know all those things until you’re there to see it.

“Very few students can say they spent their summer interviewing congressmen and sitting in committee hearings.”

The Cronkite News bureau is the only Arizona-based news organization with full-time, year-round coverage in Washington, D.C., according to Chris Callahan, dean of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications at ASU.

The students in the bureau cover issues that are important to residents of the Southwest, including border politics and water policy.

“We think it’s critically important that the Cronkite School of Journalism has a major presence in D.C. for the simple fact that Washington, D.C., is the news capital not only of our country, but really of the world,” he said.

“We are trying to be, and we believe we are, the preeminent professional journalism school in the country. Therefore, to have a working news bureau for our students to come from Phoenix and spend a semester immersed in the coverage of Washington issues is critically important not just for their learning, but, we think, for the readers and viewers in Arizona and the Southwest.”

Benefits for all

The students and professionals all benefit from the partnerships in D.C., according to Anne-Marie Slaughter, president and CEO of New America, a think ​tank and civic-engagement institution that partners with ASU in a number of ways, including through the Center on the Future of War.

“We benefit from being able to teach and have access to tens of thousands of fabulous students,” she said.

“I think for the students, what they get is real-time connection to national security professionals who are doing their job. It's a real-time set of connections that immerses them in what you might think of as lived national security, not just national security in books.”

Placing ASU students and faculty in Washington, D.C., opens the door to a lot of career opportunities, said Sarewitz, of the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes.

“It’s not like medical school, or business school, or engineering school, where there’s a clearly defined career path,” he said. “You have to be creative, you have to be willing to invent your own career.

“One of the reasons there’s fantastic opportunities is there aren’t a lot of people that think the way we think, and people find that very attractive and interesting.”

The nation’s capital is the perfect showcase for the innovative thought leadership fostered by ASU, Slaughter said.

“One of the things I love about partnering with ASU is, there's an atmosphere of what I think of as the presumptive ‘yes,’ ” she said.

“If somebody comes up with an idea, it doesn't automatically happen, but ASU is much more, ‘Well, let's try that,’ than, ‘Why should we do that?’ ”

Artist rendering of the new Washington Center

An artist's rendering shows the 32,000-square-foot, eight-story Barrett & O’Connor Washington Center housed in a historic building at 1800 I St. NW, adjacent to the World Bank and two blocks from the White House.

Barrett and O’Connor Washington Center launch

ASU Now will be covering the events celebrating the opening of the Ambassador Barbara Barrett & Justice Sandra Day O’Connor Washington Center at Arizona State University. Check in at for blog updates; some panels will also be available via Facebook Live at To register to attend events in person, visit

Monday, March 12

810 a.m.: “Future of War and U.S. National Security” panel discussion sponsored by the Center on the Future of War, highlighting core faculty: Peter Bergen and Daniel Rothenberg, co-directors, and Lt. Gen. (ret.) Bob Schmidle and Candace Rondeaux, senior fellows. 

11:30 a.m.1 p.m.: “Crisis in Higher Education? Free Speech, Intellectual Diversity and Civil Dialogue on Campus” panel discussion sponsored by the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership.

3:305 p.m.: “Exploring the Cronkite School” sessions that will include information about the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication’s award-winning professional programs in Phoenix, Los Angeles and Washington as well as a tour of the Cronkite News – Washington Bureau. Mark Lodato, associate dean of the Cronkite School, will moderate a panel featuring Washington Post reporter Samantha Pell; Lisa Ruhl, senior video producer at The Hill; and Marisela Ramirez, media intern at Edelman Public Relations.

67 p.m.: “Covering Washington in the Age of Trump” keynote panel, sponsored by the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, featuring Leonard Downie Jr., the Weil Family Professor of Journalism at the school and former executive editor of the Washington Post. 

77:15 p.m.: Tour of the Barrett and O’Connor Washington Center and Cronkite News Bureau.

7:158:30 p.m.: Cronkite School reception.

Tuesday, March 13

810 a.m.: “The Importance of University Researchers Partnering with Mission Focused Government Agenda” panel discussion sponsored by the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, moderated by Nadya Bliss, director of ASU’s Global Security Initiative.

11:30 a.m.1:30 p.m.: “How Will Self-Driving Cars Reshape Our Cities?” panel discussion sponsored by Future Tense, a partnership between Slate, New America and ASU. 

47:30 p.m.: Knowledge Enterprise Development showcase and reception. This is an opportunity to explore research prototypes and mingle with some of the top research thought leaders of the future from ASU.

Wednesday, March 14

810 a.m.: “Transformative Knowledge by Design: Graduate Student and Postdoctoral Fellows’ Research Impact” panel discussion sponsored by the Graduate College in partnership with the Council of Graduate Schools.

11:30 a.m.–2 p.m.: “Restoring Trust in American Policing” panel discussion sponsored by the College of Public Service and Community Solutions featuring Cassia Spohn, professor and director of the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice. 

6-8 p.m.: “Expanded Opportunities through ASU’s International Rule of Law and Security Program” panel sponsored by the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law moderated by former U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues and Distinguished Professor of Practice Clint Williamson.

Thursday, March 15

11:30 a.m.1:30 p.m.: “Communities in a Transborder World” film and photography presentation by the School of Transborder Studies at ASU, showcasing the community-embedded research of students. 

6–6:45 p.m.: Reception for alumni of the Thunderbird School of Global Management.

7:15-8:45 p.m.: “Globalism in the Age of Nationalism” discussion sponsored by Thunderbird School of Global Management featuring Allen J. Morrison, CEO and Director General of the Thunderbird School, and panelists.

Friday, March 16

810 a.m.: “For the Win: Innovative Approaches to Athlete Education” panel discussion sponsored by the Global Sport Institute at ASU. 

11:30 a.m.3:30 p.m.: “How the Public Can Inform Science and Technology Policy: The Case of Planetary Defense,” sponsored by the School for the Future of Innovation in Society; the Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes; the School of Earth and Space Exploration, and the Museum of Science.

15 p.m.: “Redesign School: The Future of Design Education” roundtable, sponsored by the Design School in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts in partnership with the National Building Museum.

5–6:30 p.m.: Arts and Design at ASU reception with The Design School in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, in partnership with the National Building Museum.

Monday, March 19

57 p.m.: “The McCain Institute at ASU: How Do We End Terrorism?” discussion from the McCain Institute for International Leadership. Executive Director Kurt Volker will host former Homeland Security Adviser (and McCain Institute trustee) Fran Townsend, former Director of the U.S. National Counter-Terrorism Center Nick Rasmussen and special guests as they describe the evolution of global terrorism since 9/11 and discuss long-term approaches for overcoming it. 

Tuesday, March 20

5:30–7 p.m.: Center for Gender Equity in Science and Technology reception, convening leading African-American women in STEM and providing a forum for women to strategize and build coalitions, continue discourse from previous gatherings that have led to grant funded projects, share job announcements and explore opportunities to support and lead interagency functions.

Learn more about ASU in Washington, D.C., at

Mary Beth Faller

Reporter , ASU News


ASU Enterprise Partners Employee of the Year takes her passion to work

February 28, 2018

When you think of the phrase “employee of the year,” you may envision framed headshots of star employees in every office, coffee shop and marketplace you’ve been to. But honoring the amazing work done by those who deserve recognition is important in every line of work, and Linda Raish is one of those outstanding individuals.

Awarded the Arizona State University Enterprise Partners Employee of the Year for 2018, Raish, the director of development, natural sciences for the ASU Foundation in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has proven to be an incredible asset.  (From left) ASU Enterprise Partners Employee of the Year Nominees William Kavan and Lisa Roubal-Brown and ASU Enterprise Partners Employee of the Year Linda Raish from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Development team with Dean Patrick Kenney. Download Full Image

The award was established in 2014 in order recognize and honor employees who exhibit characteristics of innovation, engagement, and service and care toward the ASU community.

“We strive to make a difference for students, faculty and the greater community,” said Raish. “We care so much for our donors who help advance change, so it is such an honor to be recognized for this service to the university.”

Candidates are nominated by colleagues who believe they practice and uphold the mission and values of the ASU Foundation, “We serve. We engage. We innovate. We care.” Raish was nominated by Senior Director of Development for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences ASU Foundation William Kavan, who was also a nominee for this year’s award.

“Linda is an outstanding team member. I nominated her because of her dedication to our values of caring, serving, innovating and engaging,” said Kavan. “Linda winning the award shows what a strong team we have [at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences].”

Raish previously worked in the environmental science field at the Desert Botanical Garden and the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy. She took her love for the environment and has now worked in the natural sciences in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for more than 10 years.

She serves as a front-line fundraiser for the ASU Foundation, combining her passions for science, people and philanthropic work to engage in the ASU community and help raise funds for the natural sciences, its students and faculty.

“The most important thing about my work is that it enables impact,” said Raish. “The opportunity to make a difference at ASU is everywhere, and getting to be involved in that through my work is awe-inspiring.”

Having received the award, Raish will continue on in her work to bring funding where it is most needed. Unyielding, her drive to make an impact among the ASU community is more alive than ever.

“This award will strengthen the relationships I have with the alumni, faculty and staff of liberal arts and sciences units,” said Raish. “They will have even more trust in me and the impact we can create together. There is so much left to do, and I hope that I am able to work at ASU forever.”

Olivia Knecht

Student writer-reporter, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


Dreams come true for ASU students with 'Hearts and Scholars'

February 6, 2018

One act of generosity can leave an indelible mark on the lives of students and the educational priorities of programs at Arizona State University.

Supporters of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences play a vital role in accelerating the university’s mission to ensure access to all deserving students, leverage the strength of faculty to ignite discovery and develop vibrant communities.  The College of Liberal Arts and Science’s annual Hearts and Scholars dinner celebrates philanthropy and scholarships, uniting donors and student recipients for over 10 years. Download Full Image

Philanthropy puts dreams within reach for scholarship recipients, fueling new knowledge, inspiration and helping create a foundation of progress and generosity.


Those who give to ASU often do so in a way that expresses endearment and acknowledgement to not only the school, but also to those they love.

One of the many donors giving back to ASU is Elizabeth Holman Brooks, who established a scholarship in her late husband’s name to represent his conscientiousness and loyalty as a legislator in District 24.

"He was a very sincere and loyal person," she said. "Because he was interested in politics, we decided establishing a scholarship in political science would be a marvelous way to honor him."

For a decade, Calvin M. Holman served in the Arizona House of Representatives, representing constituents in Paradise Valley, North Phoenix and Sun City. He was also very active in the community. Holman was chairman of the Arizona Council for the Hearing Impaired, president of the Scottsdale Republican Forum and a member of Scottsdale Sunrise Rotary.

Holman died in an automobile accident in 2007. The political science scholarship is a tribute to his dedication and service to the citizens of Arizona. It encourages students to explore service in the legislature and a career in legislative affairs.

“My family and I wanted to establish the scholarship at ASU because it’s a growing and vibrant university,” Holman Brooks said. “We’re just a small part of it, but it’s very satisfying to us as donors.”


Dena Kalamchi, a double major in political science and sociology with a certificate in international studies, received the Calvin M. Holman Political Science Scholarship this year. She is fascinated by international policy and has always been interested in social justice and community involvement.

Kalamchi’s scholarship provides her with the opportunity to make a difference, serving as a fellow for the Chautauqua Institution, a not-for-profit community committed to exploring the best in human values and the enrichment of life by engaging in discussions on important religious, social and political issues.

However, Kalamchi is not the only student recipient working hard. Miriam Antonieta Carpenter-Cosand is a first-year doctoral student in Spanish literature and culture from the School of International Letters and Cultures. The recipient of the Foster Latin America Research Fellowship Endowment this year, she is working to combine her love for painting with her studies in Spanish culture, and recognizes how philanthropy makes her vision achievable.

“Philanthropic support is a very generous and conscious act because donors are thinking about future generations and what we do to improve,” she said. “I always feel very grateful. Thank you for making my dreams a possibility.”

Briana Rodriguez, a first-generation student, didn’t think it would be possible to obtain a higher education, but when she received the First Generation Justice Studies Scholarship, everything changed.

Currently pursuing her undergraduate degree in justice studies at the School of Social Transformation, Rodriguez hopes to go into law and help families in need. The scholarship will allow Rodriguez to reach her goal of fighting for children and parent rights, as she has experienced the foster care system and now has the chance to make a positive impact.  

“This scholarship lifted a burden off my shoulders and gave me an opportunity in life,” Rodriguez said. “In the future, I intend to come back to ASU to help in any way I can.”

Hearts and Scholars

For more than 10 years, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has been bringing together donors and student recipients to celebrate the philanthropy of scholarships and the impacts these scholarships have on students and their dreams for the future.

The annual Hearts and Scholars event will take place at 5 p.m. Feb. 8 on the Tempe campus for invited guests.

“It’s an excellent event,” Holman Brooks said. “And education is worthy. Very worthy.”

Olivia Knecht

Student writer-reporter, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


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Kern Family Foundation gives ASU $12.4M grant for character education

January 31, 2018

Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College to build character education into programs

Arizona State University’s Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College has been awarded a $12.4 million grant by the Kern Family Foundation to develop and incorporate character education into its teacher and leadership preparation programs. These programs will include undergraduate programs, graduate programs, non-degree certificates and professional development programs.

Carole Basile, dean of ASU’s Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, said the desire to address character education arose from the conviction that one core purpose of education is to support the development of citizens who have the habits of mind and disposition to maintain civil society and serve the public good.

“The great American experiment in self-government has always rested on our ability to educate citizens capable of reasoned argument, respectful discourse and the hard work of balancing individual ambitions and the public good,” Basile said.

While ASU’s Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College prepares students to become successful and capable educators throughout its programs and courses, the investment from the Kern Family Foundation will support the college as it consciously articulates and builds character education into the school’s curricula and design. Basile noted that while the college’s curricula and programs have long emphasized service learning and social responsibility, the Kern grant allows the college to bring a “new level of intentionality and structure” to the work of integrating concepts of character and character development into the systems, norms, curricula and processes of the school. This would be the first effort of its kind and scale for a college of education.

“We are committed to deepening the relationship between the university and our surrounding community,” ASU President Michael M. Crow said. “Social embeddedness is one of our core principles, and we see this expanded emphasis on character education as an opportunity to enhance not only the quality of life for our students and citizens, but also the quality of engagement with our democratic process.”

As faculty and staff developed the college’s proposal, they engaged in spirited discussions about the meaning of character and the role of a college of education in nurturing it.

“We arrived at an approach to character education that aims to prepare our students to be effective educators and caring citizens,” Basile said. “Our conversations led to a view of character education based on ideas of equity and reciprocity. It embraces difference, multiple perspectives and the complexity of social life.”

“American parents say that the formation of strong character is their highest aspiration for their children,” Kern Family Foundation President James Rahn said. “Ninety percent of Americans say our democracy is only as strong as the virtue of its citizens. The Kern Family Foundation is impressed with the transformative vision for character education developed by Dean Basile and faculty and staff at the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College. We are confident in ASU’s ability to bring this vision to reality and to become the anchor of a national network of colleges of education committed to character education.”

The framework developed by the college identifies four kinds of character: moral, civic, intellectual and performance. It also identifies four social environments that the college’s approach to character education will address: interpersonal, university, PK-12 learning environments and the larger communities in which schools reside.

The college’s approach will integrate character education throughout its academic programs and co-curricular activities.  Among the practical activities the grant will support: 

• development of program materials and activities for existing and future degree and non-degree offerings that prepare future educators and education leaders
• integration of intellectual, moral, civic and performance character into the community design labs the college facilitates with schools to address challenges those schools face   
• research on the impact of character development in education
• an annual convening of scholars, education leaders, nonprofits, policymakers and others to further explore the role of character education in the preparation of teachers and education leaders

Basile emphasized that the commitment to character education is central to the college’s strategy and expanding vision.

“We asked ourselves: What are the qualities of our institution that render us most likely to succeed at redefining what a college of education can provide to students, the education system and society?

“Our answer is that we integrate character and what we call creative intrapreneurship in a distinctive manner. We think educators should be able to work within organizations and systems to ask the right questions, navigate uncertainty, and work in teams to design and create solutions to the toughest challenges. That’s what we mean by creative intrapreneurship. We view character as a vital complement to the innovative energy of creative intrapreneurship. It adds purpose to innovation.” 

Longtime ASU supporter, philanthropist Sanford endows scholarships for ASU, 11 other universities

$30 million Horatio Alger-Denny Sanford Scholarship Program will assist students committed to pursuing higher education and giving back to their communities

January 29, 2018

T. Denny Sanford’s name is associated with major philanthropic gifts throughout the U.S. With few exceptions, they are associated with the health and welfare of children and young people — such as the Sanford Children’s Hospital in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, built to resemble a fairy-tale castle. At Arizona State University, the T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics is named for Sanford.

Sanford’s life has been called a rags-to-riches story, one that was appropriately recognized in 2016 when he received the Horatio Alger Award, named for the American author who became famous for inspirational tales. T. Denny Sanford has established the Horatio Alger-Denny Sanford Scholarship Program at 12 universities, including ASU T. Denny Sanford (left, with ASU President Michael M. Crow) has enabled the university to build what is needed to improve the health and welfare of families. Download Full Image

Now Sanford is partnering with the Horatio Alger Association to benefit 12 universities in five states, providing scholarships to outstanding high school students who are committed to pursuing higher education and giving back to their communities. His $30 million gift, the largest in the association’s 71-year history, will provide $3 million per year in scholarship support to Horatio Alger Scholars choosing to attend any of a dozen universities selected by Sanford for the next 10 years.

One of those universities is ASU, where the Horatio Alger-Denny Sanford Scholarship Program will provide $250,000 in scholarship funds per year beginning in 2019–20.

“When I received the Horatio Alger Association Award, it was one of the greatest honors I could have imagined in my life,” Sanford said. “The association’s mission of transforming young lives through its scholarship programs perfectly aligns with my motto in life, which is ‘Aspire to inspire before you expire.’ I wanted to create a program that would remind students that if someone like me can overcome challenges to succeed, they can, too. I am proud to make this gift, and I hope it will not only allow these resilient young men and women to take that next step forward in their lives, but also inspire continued generosity toward all of our scholars.”

Born in St. Paul, Minnesota, Sanford overcame poverty and the early loss of his mother to graduate from the University of Minnesota in 1958. Building on a career in sales, marketing and materials distribution, he purchased United National Corporation in Sioux Falls, South Dakota (now First Premier Bank), and created the credit card company Premier Bankcard.

When he created his foundation for charitable giving, Sanford’s initial focus was to help sick, disadvantaged, abused and neglected children. In addition to the Sioux Falls hospital, Sanford has funded the Mayo Clinic Pediatric Center in Rochester, Minnesota, and the Pediatric Center at Florida Hospital for Children, both bearing his name. The Edith Sanford Breast Center, with 49 locations, is named for his mother, who died of breast cancer when Sanford was 4.

At ASU, Sanford’s name and values are found in multiple centers and initiatives. In 2008, he funded the creation of the Sanford Harmony Program, a pioneering effort to help teachers develop stronger social connections among students, and foster positive peer relationships that enable students to thrive at school, at home, and as they grow into adulthood. Sanford Harmony is now being implemented in thousands of American classrooms. His 2009 gift of $19 million created the Sanford Education Project, expanding the relationship between Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College and Teach For America.

In 2014, his gift of $5.9 million increased the reach of the Sanford Inspire Program at ASU’s Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, providing educators with free, online tools and resources to inspire students from pre-kindergarten through high school.

“I wanted to create a program that would change the world,” Sanford said, acknowledging that he benefited greatly from having inspirational teachers in grade school. “I can think of no better return on investment than supporting a program that can change the lives of children.”

In recognition of Sanford’s exemplary support of community-centered initiatives at ASU, the T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics was named in 2012 and is ranked among the top 10 programs of its kind in the world. The school has become an important center of research, teaching and collaboration to improve the well-being of children, youth and families. His recent $1 million dollar gift to the school created courses for adult learners that enhance their capacity for empathy and compassion.

At the dedication of the school, ASU President Michael M. Crow said, “When you match Denny Sanford’s energy, drive and resources with what ASU is committed to do to find the solutions to the great challenges we as a society face, you have the perfect combination to create real change. Denny has helped put ASU at the forefront of social innovation — building what is needed to improve the health and welfare of families.”

“Denny Sanford’s steadfast support of ASU is inspiring for all of us.”

— Gretchen Buhlig, CEO, ASU Foundation

Gretchen Buhlig, chief executive officer of the ASU Foundation for a New American University, said, “Denny Sanford’s steadfast support of ASU is inspiring for all of us. His commitment to improving life for children and families across the nation allows us to fulfill our own commitment to meet the needs of 21st-century learners — learners who will then touch countless lives themselves, through careers that advance the communities where they live.”

ASU endowment shows strong performance in 2017

12.8 percent ROI above averages for US public and private universities

January 25, 2018

Each January the National Association of College and University Business Officers compiles data from hundreds of institutions of higher learning across the U.S., public and private. The result is the NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments (NCSE), a definitive report that serves as an annual benchmark of the performance of university investment funds.

The NCSE for fiscal year 2017, released today, credits the ASU Endowment with a 12.8 percent return on investment last year. The endowment outperformed the average — 12.7 percent — for all funds of comparable size ($501 million–$1 billion), as well as the averages for endowments of all public institutions (12.2 percent) and all private (12.3).  Download Full Image

Gretchen Buhlig, chief executive officer of the ASU Foundation for A New American University, says the positive comparison with more than 800 college and university funds is not the most important indicator for the ASU endowment.

“While our 12.8 percent return exceeded our internal benchmark of 12.1, I am most proud that the continued stewardship of the endowment has led to more than $26 million in funds to ASU to support the university’s mission. This marks a 20 percent increase over last year and our largest amount of support to date,” she said.

R.F. “Rick” Shangraw Jr. is CEO of ASU Enterprise Partners, parent organization of the ASU Foundation. He said the endowment’s strong performance for 2017 is particularly gratifying as it follows two changes in investment management and philosophy.

“Last June we welcomed Jeffrey Mindlin to our leadership as vice president of investments,” Shangraw said. “Jeff graduated from ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business and rapidly established himself as a successful chief investment officer for major asset management firms.”

Mindlin also serves as liaison between Enterprise Partners and the outsourced chief investment officer (OCIO) firm named in July: BlackRock Inc.

“Our investment committee selected BlackRock as OCIO for its global perspective, its strong focus on innovation, and a wide range of demonstrated investment skills,” Mindlin said.

BlackRock further illustrated its alignment with ASU’s mission this month when CEO Larry Fink called on CEOs of public companies to ask themselves, “What role do we play in the community?”

His letter drew national attention, reflecting a growing demand for corporate America to act philanthropically and help solve social issues. Putting his words into action, Fink vowed to double his BlackRock staff to follow through.

“While our 12.8 percent return exceeded our internal benchmark of 12.1, I am most proud that the continued stewardship of the endowment has led to more than $26 million in funds to ASU to support the university’s mission."

— Gretchen Buhlig, CEO, ASU Foundation

“The challenges Larry Fink poses to his peers and to guide BlackRock are identical to the questions that led Michael Crow to redesign ASU as a New American University," Buhlig said. "It’s vital that we continue to ask hard questions as we steward the investments that help that university thrive and grow. Seeing our shared commitment bear fruit so early in our relationship with BlackRock reinforces our shared vision for our institutions and their roles in our world.”

About ASU Enterprise Partners

Enterprise Partners is a not-for-profit organization based in Tempe, Arizona and made up of distinct entities that raise, create and invest resources for the benefit of Arizona State University while advocating for and advancing ASU’s mission and brand.

2 ASU students receive Barrett Global Explorers Grant

Award allows Barrett, The Honors College students to conduct research abroad

January 22, 2018

One will study human-wildlife interactions, the other will study human trafficking support. With the support of the Barrett Global Explorers Grant, Arizona State University Barrett, The Honors College juniors Kinley Ragan and Lauren Barnes will do their best to circumnavigate the globe this summer while conducting research for their senior honors theses.

Previously known as the Barrett Honors Intercontinental Study Award, the newly reconceived grant provides funding for Barrett juniors to conduct a multi-country research project. In addition, students develop global connections and bolster their understanding of world issues. Grants range up to $10,000. Kinley Ragan Kinley Ragan, a biological sciences major, has won the Barrett Global Explorers Grant to conduct a multi-country research project. Download Full Image

A biological sciences major who is also pursuing a minor in statistics and a certificate in Geographic Information Systems, Ragan will conduct research for her project, “Human Wildlife Conflict Management in an Expanding Society,” over a period of 12 weeks in five different countries. To develop an improved understanding of human-wildlife conflict (HWC) mitigation strategies across the globe, she will visit national parks in Thailand, Australia, Nepal, South Africa, and Colombia and interview park rangers and local community members.

“Humanity is expanding and new landscapes are being reached every day. With our development comes decreased land for animals, smaller buffer zones, and more run-ins with wildlife,” Ragan said. “This research is significant because it impacts everyone and is a global issue. To maintain biodiversity and human and ecosystem well-being, we need to coexist with our wildlife,” she added. Ragan said she plans to publish her research and expand on her project in graduate school as she pursues a doctorate.

Barnes, a social work major, will conduct research on the means by which communities around the world provide resources and support to survivors of sex trafficking. She will meet with members of non-governmental and law enforcement organizations in at least three different countries, as well as service providers and non-profit groups to interview them and document what services they provide and how. Considering that she has never before traveled outside the United States, Barnes is especially excited to conduct research in Ireland, France, Spain, Ghana, or South Korea.

“This research is significant because sex trafficking is an under-researched area and being able to identify and understand it on a global level increases our abilities as a world to fight this issue and support these survivors,” Barnes said. 

The application process for the Global Explorers Grant is quite rigorous. Applicants must initially submit a five-page proposal detailing an international research project spanning at least five countries on at least three different continents. A committee of Barrett faculty members then selects the five strongest applicants for development into ten-page proposals. The final selection meeting also includes a 10-minute oral presentation and a 20-minute interview with the award committee.

“It was one of the tougher application and interview processes I’ve been through,” Barnes said. “I am extremely grateful and excited. I know this is a large award and feel so thankful for the (award) committee believing in my project and me. I look forward to spending my summer researching a topic I care deeply about.”

Kyle Mox, director of the Office of National Scholarship Advisement, housed at Barrett on the Tempe campus, said members of the award committee agreed that these research projects are worth supporting because they highlight ASU’s interest in social embeddedness and Barrett’s commitment to global initiatives.

“Both of these projects are not only important for the students’ intellectual and professional development, they also have the potential to help solve important global problems,” he said. “We agreed that they represent the ambitions that we hope to foster at Barrett and ASU — to be future ‘problem solvers.’”

Another important selection criteria for the award are the student’s personal characteristics.

“We hope to see students who are independent, thoughtful, and culturally aware,” Mox added. “Considering that they are going to be essentially circumnavigating the planet on their own, it’s important that they also demonstrate maturity and resourcefulness, not to mention a little courage.”

The expansion and renaming of the program follows a generous donation from long-time Barrett benefactor Charles Bivenour. A member of the Circumnavigators Club, an international organization founded in the early 1990s to promote global travel, Bivenour sees international travel as integral to undergraduates’ educations.

“I feel having international travel and exposure to different countries and cultures is absolutely necessary for students. With support from the Barrett Global Explorers Grant, not only do students develop a project that will satisfy their intellectual growth, they also have an opportunity that will contribute to their overall personal development,” he said.

Bivenour also served as a member of the award committee.

“I am honored to be involved with ASU and especially Barrett by helping support the grant,” he added. “It’s my way of doing something meaningful and worthwhile.”

Barrett, The Honors College is in the midst of Campaign 2020, an effort to gain support for programs like this grant and other opportunities that help students fulfill their goals and potential. The campaign focuses on building support in several areas, including student scholarships; fostering global citizenship by expanding access to educational travel, global leaders and internships; increasing the amount of professional development funds for honors faculty and establishing a visiting honors faculty program; and developing an honors student success center. Find out more about how you can join them in strengthening Barrett’s unique learning environment.

Nicole Greason

Public relations and publicity manager , Barrett, The Honors College