Valley Leadership announces Gary Trujillo and Ellie Ziegler as the organization’s 2013 Man & Woman of the Year. The pair will be honored for their long-term contribution and commitment to our community at an awards luncheon in March 2014. This will be the 65th Annual Man & Woman of the Year Luncheon.
Trujillo has demonstrated long-term, proactive community leadership in the Valley for nearly four decades. Known for his unwavering commitment to advancing educational opportunities for Arizona’s underserved students, Trujillo and his wife, Melissa, founded the Be A Leader Foundation in 2002. In 1994, he created Roosevelt Community Technology Center (RCTC) giving underprivileged youth access to state-of-the-art computer and software. Trujillo serves on numerous community boards including Arizona State University Foundation, Arizona College Scholarship Foundation, Arizona Community College Council, Well Fargo Bank Advisory Board, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Harvard Business School Latino Alumni Association and Hispanic Business Students Association. Currently, he is chairman, president and CEO of Southwest Harvard Group Venture Capital.
“Gary embodies Valley Leadership’s mission by advocating and modeling the importance of the life cycle of giving,” said Tom Ambrose, co-chair of this year’s Selection Committee. “He is dedicated to helping others achieve greatness by serving and strengthening their community.”
Ziegler is dedicated to serving multiple philanthropic support and nonprofit organizations benefitting education, arts, athletics, Boys and Girls clubs, healthcare and human services. She is a seasoned marketing and communications professional with a career spanning 25 years working with Valley organizations including Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, Jennings & Thompson and Westcor.
She is most known for her leadership with the Fiesta Bowl providing more than 30 years of active volunteerism. In 2006, she led a staff of 28 and 3,000 community volunteers in the execution of three national college Bowl games and 50 statewide events as chairman of the board. Ziegler not only gives her time, but commits resources to many worth causes. She provided the lead gift to raise funds for the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art and for Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center’s Campus for Exceptional Children in Phoenix.
Currently, Ziegler is leading scholarship, after-school, hunger and family support projects for Boys & Girls Clubs of Phoenix and Scottsdale, United Way and Barrow Neurological Institute.
“Ellie’s innate leadership abilities motivate her fellow citizens to give back to their communities,” said Ambassador Barbara Barrett, selection committee co-chair. “Her selfless service to her community is a shining example of what it means to be a Valley Leadership Woman of the Year.”
Trujillo and Ziegler join a prestigious list of past Man & Woman of the Year award recipients. U.S. Sen. Barry Goldwater was honored as the inaugural Man of the Year and, most recently, Tom Ambrose and Ambassador Barbara Barrett were recognized as the 2012 recipients.
The newest inductees will be formally recognized at a luncheon on March 27, 2014, at the Arizona Biltmore. For more information or to purchase seats or sponsorships, call the Valley Leadership office at (602) 952-6760.