Fundraiser for Big Brothers, Big Sisters Focuses on Importance of Mentoring

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Posted By on February 14, 2017

They’re swinging for the fences to help honor the huge influence a mentor can have on a child.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona is warming up for its baseball-themed “Pitch In for Kids” dinner and fundraiser next week to celebrate life-changing mentoring. The theme draws on how coaches build confidence in and teach skills to their players, just as mentors encourage their mentees to reach their fullest potential. Event co-chairs are Pam Giannonatti of Fry’s Food Stores and Paul Evans of Evans CPA & Consulting. Special guests will include Bob Brenly (honorary chair) of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Paul Horton of KPHO CBS 5, and Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone.

Horton, KPHO CBS 5 chief meteorologist and former Big Brother, was a big brother 16 years ago to Alfred – who is now in the Army.  “We did everything together – basketball, dinner, homework,” Horton said. “When he was younger he wanted to be a stuntman in Hollywood, so we had our own carwash to raise money for stunt camp. We raised enough money after three weekends of carwashes – $500! At that camp he had the experience of a lifetime. Being a mentor was not only rewarding to Alfred, I learned a lot about myself as well.”

Every year, for the last nine years, Horton spends a week washing cars to raise money for Big Brothers Big Sisters. From 4 in the morning until 7 at night Horton washes cars with volunteers and broadcasts live during the morning, noon and evening news shows on CBS5, tapping into his network of local celebrities, entertainers and community partners and encouraging them to be part of the event. His efforts last October helped raise more than $250,000.

Speakers during dinner will include Brenly, Penzone, and president and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona’s Laura Capello. On deck will be former Little Brother and business leader Clarence Stallings, as well as Little Brother Skyler and Big Brother Sam who will share their inspirational stories.

“Pitch In for Kids” is Thursday, February 23rd, at 5:30 p.m. at JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort and Spa.

To attend, become a sponsor or donate, go to bbbsaz.org.

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