Arizona Grantmakers Forum Hosts Largest Luncheon Yet

Posted By on September 20, 2018

Arizona Grantmakers Forum will host its third annual Transform Arizona luncheon presented by Northern Trust — its largest and most inclusive luncheon yet — on Tuesday, October 30 at the Children’s Museum of Phoenix.

The Forum is a statewide network that connects, educates and advocates for philanthropy. The luncheon and fundraiser is open to community, business and philanthropic leaders across the state in an effort to open an exchange of ideas that will create an even better Arizona.

“Leaders across sectors need a place where they can collectively explore Arizona’s challenges and opportunities, and this luncheon serves that purpose,” said Laurie Liles, president and CEO of Arizona Grantmakers Forum.

The luncheon features inspiring speakers who share ideas that attendees can incorporate into their work and daily lives to improve the state. This year’s keynote speaker is Dr. Manuel Pastor, a professor of Sociology and American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California.

Dr. Sybil Francis, president and CEO of the Center for the Future of Arizona, and Ella Wofford, Lake Havasu Youth Council Member and Center for the Future of Arizona’s DemocraSeed participant, will also speak at the event.

“In the past two years we have had speakers who inform and inspire and it’s magical the way our members and community leaders come together,” said Kim Garbacz, senior director of education and communications of Arizona Grantmakers Forum. “Some of them know each other; some of them make new connections. We hope that they take  what they learn and put it into their work to transform Arizona.”

Dr. Pastor’s keynote will highlight the changing demographics in Arizona and the country and their implications for social justice, racial equity, workforce and the economy. He will offer suggestions for how community leaders can adapt to these changes through collaboration.

“The reason why it’s relevant for our organization in particular is he’ll be defining philanthropy’s role in confronting those challenges, making recommendations for steps they can take now and strategies they can consider into the future, including cross-sector collaboration,” said Garbacz.

Wofford’s comments will lend a fresh perspective to the luncheon as a young community leader who serves on the Lake Havasu Youth Council.

“Because we’re a statewide organization, the Transform Arizona luncheon is a perfect opportunity to shine a spotlight on the work being done by movers and shakers from different corners of the state,” said Garbacz. “We’re thrilled to have Dr. Francis and Ella this year to show us what the next generation of Arizona leaders is capable of.”

Partnership opportunities are still available. To learn more, contact Kim Garbacz at

To learn more, or purchase tickets, visit:

Jamie Killin

About Jamie Killin

Jamie Killin is the web editor for Frontdoors Media. She also is a freelance journalist who has been published in Thrillist, Phoenix Magazine, So Scottsdale!, The Arizona Republic and more.

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