Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Names 2015 Piper Fellows

Six Nonprofit Leaders Receive Transformational Fellowships

PHOENIX, Ariz.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust has named its 15th class
of Piper Fellows—six nonprofit leaders dedicated to improving and
enriching lives throughout Maricopa County’s communities. The newly
selected Piper Fellows, chosen via a competitive process, will complete
their fellowships in 2016 and become part of the larger and enduring
“Piper Fellows community.”

The 2015 Piper Fellows are: Marc Ashton, CEO, Foundation
for Blind Children
; Tara Jackson,
President, Arizona
Town Hall
; Mattie Lord, Chief
Program Officer, UMOM
New Day Centers
; Jeffory Morris,
Curator of Art, i.d.e.a.
; Reverend Poulson Reed, Rector, All
Saints’ Episcopal Church and Day School
Dan Schay, Executive Director, Theater
. Bios and further information
about the 2015 Piper Fellows are available here.

“Piper Fellowships provide our nonprofit leaders with opportunities to
grow personally and professionally. It is absolutely inspiring to see
how Fellows actualize their experiences and build resiliency in
themselves and their organizations,” said Susan Pepin, M.D., president
and CEO, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.

The 2015 Piper Fellows will participate in a Piper Fellowship—a
self-designed, professional development sabbatical focused on
strengthening leadership skills and exploring innovative programs that
can help nonprofits become more effective and resilient.

Fellowships can include study with renowned thought leaders and
innovators (e.g., at MIT, Stanford, Harvard, Lilly Family School of
Philanthropy, Aspen Institute, Disney Institute, Sesame Street
Workshop), immersion programs that expand cultural knowledge and
insights, and in-depth visits to best practice sites around the country. Sabbaticals
are often transformational
for Fellows and their organizations; some
examples include: the development of new revenue generating programs,
organizational rebranding, streamlining of social services, and
reimagining how a health clinic can better serve patients.

Piper Fellows, from all 15 classes, also have the opportunity to meet
monthly in facilitated Leadership Circles to share professional
issues and challenges common among nonprofit leaders. These monthly
gatherings focus on building community among nonprofit leaders. Fellows
frequently cite the relationships gained among peer colleagues as the
most rewarding aspect of the program—many new collaborations and
partnerships have resulted that otherwise would not have happened.

A Piper Fellowship offers each selected organization potential grant
awards up to $90,000; the first $30,000 provides each Fellow with
expenses for study, travel, and opportunities to visit best practice
sites around the country. The Trust also awards up to $10,000 for new or
increased professional development for the staff of Fellows’

In addition, Fellows are eligible to apply for a $50,000 Organizational
Enhancement Award to implement a learning or program developed during
the sabbatical.

Up to six new Piper Fellows are selected each year. There are 63 Piper
Fellows to date.

A selection committee of four community leaders, including a Piper
Fellow, reviewed the applicant pool and made the 2015 Piper Fellow
recommendations to Piper Trust’s Board of Trustees.

About Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust:

Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust supports organizations that enrich
health, well-being, and opportunity for the people of Maricopa County,
Arizona. Since it began awarding grants in 2000, Piper Trust has
invested more than $347 million in local nonprofits and programs. Piper
Trust grantmaking areas are healthcare and medical research, children,
older adults, arts and culture, education, and religious organizations.
For more information, visit
Follow us on Twitter @PiperTrust;
visit us on Facebook.
View Piper Trust’s FY14 Annual Report at:

Further Information about the Piper Fellows Program:

Piper Fellows Program—Brochure

Piper Fellows—Classes
by Year and Bios

Stories of Transformation—Video
Shorts of Piper Fellows


Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust
Karen Leland, 480-556-7125
Communications and External Relations