Leaders and Legends 2016 Information
Each year thousands of highly skilled students across our state cannot attend college, only because of their economic circumstances. College Success Arizona provides scholarships and intensive mentoring needed to help these high potential students succeed in college, and then contribute to Arizona’s economy and society. Since 2005, College Success Arizona has committed over $15 million in scholarships, and success services, to over 1,100 Arizona students. Our Leaders and Legends fundraiser supports the College Success Arizona program, and provides all scholars a full time Success Advisor, to help clear barriers to educational success. Even though our students are considered “at-risk,” they have a nearly 70% graduation rate; significantly higher than their counterparts across the state. While it is vital for the state to award more degrees, the stories of how College Success Arizona scholars benefit are the most compelling reasons for the work we do.
Leaders and Legends is an annual fundraising luncheon honoring an Arizona business leader or organization, dedicated to improving the college graduation rates for all Arizonans. This year’s event will take place on Wednesday, October 26th in the Grand Ballroom of the Arizona Biltmore.
We are thrilled to announce that this year’s honoree is the Honorable Ed Pastor, retired United States Congressman. We are recognizing Congressman Pastor for his contributions to improving our quality of life by promoting education in Arizona and across the nation. Beginning as a science teacher at North High School, in Phoenix, Congressman Pastor believed in education, but knew he could do more. After returning to ASU to earn his law degree, Congressman Pastor served in Governor Raul Castro’s cabinet, then as a member of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, before becoming one of Arizona’s Representatives in the Congress. We look forward to hearing more about Congressman Pastor’s perspective on the importance of higher education to Arizona’s future.
Past Leaders and Legends honorees have included Robert Sarver, Derrick Hall, Don Smith, Salt River Project, John Zidich, and Rich Dozer.
Additionally, the program will highlight a College Success Arizona Scholar who will shares his or her personal college success story. As an example: Crystal is working on her dream of becoming an immigration lawyer. She is inspired to help others deal with the struggles her parents endured emigrating to the U.S., “My motivation comes directly from my family. I think about where my family came from, which is basically nothing. I don’t take anything I have today for granted.”
Crystal’s family encouraged her to get a college degree, “My parents taught me what hard work was, and they were always telling me to do well in school because that’s what is going to benefit me in the long run, and it’s true.”
Born and raised in Mesa, Crystal graduated from Mountain View High School and is pursuing a degree in Business Law at Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business.
We look forward to seeing you on October 26th.