Tag Archives: Arizona

Amazing community opportunities in the Old Pueblo

Summer has been extremely busy for the NPcatalyst team. Rather than spend the warm months surfing waves in the Pacific or backpacking along the Tahoe Rim Trail, we’ve been serving clients and connecting with corporate and charitable leaders across the country.

This past weekend was spent in Tucson, where we met with numerous non-profit officials, social entrepreneurs, and new strategic partners. Here’s a brief list of our new friends:

  • Beads of Courage – an incredible organization which distributes beads to children being treated for cancer throughout the world.
  • TreeHouse Farm – an organization which provides an unforgettable experience for children recovering from cancer treatment, serious burns, and congenital heart issues.
  • The Haven – extraordinary organization which provides substance abuse treatment and housing for men and women.
  • Arizona Oncology Foundation – a new organization which provides support programs for cancer patients and survivors.
  • One-on-One Mentoring – an organization which matchs caring adults with at-risk youth.
  • Pima Prevention Partnership – provides practical solutions to address both individual and community problems, particularly substance abuse related.

They were all introduced to our services, particularly our online gifting tool, GiftingWishes, and our BoardCheck assessment resource.

Saturday was spent in a retreat with one of our new strategic partners. This soon-to-be-launched company will provide job recruitment, leadership development, and career development opportunities to both college students and employers. Much more to follow soon.

It was just another amazing weekend. We hope it leads to many opportunities to continue helping enhance the philanthropic culture in the Old Pueblo. Plus, we may have even landed a new job for a Tucson resident!

Thank you, Tucson, for your hospitality, heat, and spectacular sunsets!

Most incredible honor ever

I returned home to the place, which I consider my second home, recently to participate in the University of Arizona‘s Homecoming Weekend activities. Though we haven’t had the best football season on record, the U of A will always be home to the most amazing college experience ever. Even better, the time I spent in Tucson will always be categorized as the period when I found my calling.

When I entered the seventh grade of a Catholic grade school in North Hollywood, Calfornia, I informed my parents…and Mr. Strub (the president of Santa Anita Park), that I would be studying horse racing as my career path. If I didn’t have the grades when I graduated high school, the only alternative would be to go to work for Mole-Richardson Company, our family motion-picture lighting business. The only school offering a program for my career path was (is) the University of Arizona and its Race Track Industry Program.

Fast-forward, this recent trip back home was very special. While I’ve been an extremely fortunate and humble recipient of awards and recognition, there’s only be one award I’ve ever wanted. When I was an undergraduate member of Kappa Sigma Fraternity, it was my wish to someday live up to the ideals and successes of our chapter’s key leaders. While I’ve lived my life according to my own ideals and principles, the A.L. Slonaker Hall of Fame Award has always been on my mind.

And while I believe the award was presented far too soon, I’m blessed by the many friends and brothers who bestowed upon me an award which I will always cherish.

Below is a bio written by my good friend and brother, Craig Lowden, and featured in the Hall of Fame program and on the Gamma-Rho Chapter website.


After waking up to find the echoes of Notre Dame High School behind him, Pete “Spidey” Parker enrolled at the University of Arizona and joined the Kappa Sigma Fraternity.

While Spidey didn’t swing around Manhattan fighting crime in his pajamas, he was a superhero for Gamma-Rho. During his time at the U of A he held the posts of Grand Master for which he won Grand Master of the Year, Grand Procurator, Grand Scribe, Social Chair, Philanthropy Chair, and Rush Chair. It was swell of Pete to leave a few offices for the other members. Before graduating in ’93 with a degree in Animal Sciences , with an emphasis in Race Track Management, he also won the Noble Award for outstanding senior. In honor of his accomplishments on our behalf, the Chapter created the Pete Parker Hustle Award, presented to the active who best embodies his frenetic spirit.

Since that time Parker has held numerous posts including time as the Fraternity Management Group staff motivator (“Make Your F-in Calls!”), executive director of the American Heart Association, director of development for Sage Ridge School, and owner/president of Parker Development Services. He is currently the managing director of NPcatalyst, LLC.

As one might expect from a former Philanthropy Chair, he’s been active in the community as well. He has served as Board President of Northern Nevada Children’s Cancer Foundation, Board President of the U of A Race Track Industry Program Alumni Association, board president of the U of A Sierra Cats Alumni Chapter. He has also been awarded the Volunteer of the Year in Northern Nevada from the Points of Light Foundation and was awarded with a Twenty Under 40 by the Reno Gazette-Journal. His new venture, NPCatalyst, was recently recognized by StayClassy as one of 25 of the nation’s finest Small Businesses in Philanthropy through its CLASSY award, an incredible honor for a company founded in January of this year.

He is also an at-large member of the Gamma-Rho House Corporation.

Parker lives in Reno with son Caden, 14, and daughter Tessa, 11.

Gamma-Rho was the ideal chapter for me. Becoming active with a small chapter filled with diverse and fun guys allowed me to learn about myself and others, giving me the confidence to seek or create opportunities, interests, and great times. I owe my success as a person to my mom, family & friends, and Kappa Sigma. This trifecta of support gives me the courage to fight for what I believe, what I aspire to, and how I live my life. This award, one which I hardly deserve, is dedicated to every person who has ever touched my life and every person whose life I have touched.”

Tucson charities added to ratings list

A handful of Tucson-based community-benefit organizations have been added to our charity ratings list.

Because of NPcatalyst’s connection to and long-time interest in Tucson, we have begun to screen local organizations and add them to our HealthCheck charity ratings list. The intent is to provide valuable “insider” and research-based information to potential donors, volunteers, and job-seekers, as they make their charitable decisions.

Thirteen of the initial 16 organizations placed on the ratings list have received an initial “efficiency” rating. The rating is a scoring of the organization’s finances as found in its most recent Form 990. Ratings range from Fair to Ideal. These organizations, and all other active 501(c)3 organizations are invited to participate in a complete HealthCheck process, where an in-depth analysis is conducted in the areas of Finance & Fund Development, Governance, Human Resources, and Public Information. The organization will receive numerical scores in each category, as well as an overall score. In addition, a best practices guide will be developed, providing suggestions for improvement in each of the categories.

Our HealthCheck process is very objective and has become an outstanding resource for private foundations, local businesses, and philanthropic leaders as they make their charitable decisions.

If there’s an organization missing from this list, drop a line to info@npcatalyst.com or 775-333-9444 and we’ll add it to our growing list of organizations to screen.

Bear Down!!!