Blog Posts Tagged ‘municipal-success-stories’

Town of Queen Creek Employee Recognized for 20 Years of Service

Congratulations to Sandy McGeorge! The Town of Queen Creek recently recognized Sandy for her dedicated service to the town, commemorating her 20th anniversary. 

The town has experienced many changes since Sandy McGeorge started in 1997. Initially serving as the Town Clerk, Sandy transitioned to the role of grant writer in 1999. As a young community, Sandy was instrumental in securing grants to help develop programs and services, particularly in the area of Parks and Recreation. She also assisted the communications area by coordinating community outreach events and the Citizen Leadership Institute. 

In 2007, Sandy began working on real estate matters on the Town’s behalf in addition to her other duties. In 2010, she became a Management Assistant II, focusing solely on real estate, where she is essential to the success of road improvement projects and economic development efforts. In 2012, she received the Senior Right-of-Way Agent distinction from the International Right-of-Way Association, the most prestigious professional designation granted to right-of-way professionals.

“Sandy plays an integral role within our organization,” stated Public Works Director Troy White. “Not only does she have a vast amount of knowledge related to real estate activities, her knowledge of Town history is invaluable.”

Learn more about Sandy, Queen Creek and read the full story by clicking here.


Arizona City and Town Police Officers Honored

Congratulations to Arizona city and town police officers on commendable efforts that were recently recognized!

Officer Wes Kelley of Apache Junction Police Department (Photo Courtesy of City of Apache Junction)

Apache Junction Police Department Officer Wesley Kelley was recently named the Officer of the Year by the local American Legion.

Kelley was given the honor on April 9 by American Legion Post 27.

American Legion posts nationwide name officers of the year. The American Legion then annually selects a National Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Award. It is awarded to a well-rounded law enforcement officer who has exceeded the duty requirements expected of his or her position and has demonstrated a distinct pattern of community service coupled with professional achievement, according to the American Legion website.

“It is always an honor to have one of our officers recognized by one of armed service organizations,” said Police Chief Thomas E. Kelly. “It is especially humbling as these are the same people that have previously placed themselves in harm’s way in defending our country.  Officer Kelley is one of those officers that requires minimum supervision and is respected by his peers. He presents himself well and treats all with dignity and respect as stated in the Apache Junction Police Department’s mission statement. Very proud of the recognition.”

Prescott Valley Police Department Officer of the Year Cozens (Photo Courtesy of Town of Prescott Valley)

The Prescott Valley Police Department also held its annual police recognition awards. The Officer of the Year was announced as Officer Caleb Cozens.

Officer Cozens started his career with the Prescott Valley Police Department in June 2015, laterally transferring from Chino Valley.  He demonstrates a positive, upbeat attitude and is known for his professionalism, representing the Prescott Valley Police Department and the Town of Prescott Valley with pride.

A team player, Officer Cozens consistently produces a high quality of work, especially in the handling of drug investigations. He is a leader within the department in drug arrests and is always willing to take on extra work. Over the last year Officer Cozens has written 83 citations/warnings, written 262 reports and supplements, and made 131 arrests.

The Town of Prescott Valley also honored other officers with awards:

Prescott Valley Police Department Rookie of the Year Officer Loughmiller (Photo Courtesy of Town of Prescott Valley)


2016 Rookie of the Year – Cameron Loughmiller

2016 Community Policing Ribbon – Officer Tyler Brown

2016 Unit of the Year – Community Services Unit

2016 Civilian of the Year – Jerry Ferguson

2016 Volunteer of the Year – Dave Demski




Nancy Jackson

Facility Manager
Chandler Senior Center


Until five years ago, City of Chandler employee Nancy Jackson spent most of her time working with young people as a Recreation Coordinator at Snedigar Sportsplex in south Chandler. Today, she manages the Chandler’s Senior Center and works with the young at heart.

“I’ve always loved to be around seniors; this is where my heart is,” Jackson says smiling. A graduate of the University of Washington with a degree in Therapeutic Recreation, Jackson, her staff and groups of volunteers spend each weekday making people feel welcome, appreciated and loved.

For many who come here, this is not their ‘second home’, this is their first home,” Jackson explained. “This is where they come to meet up with their friends, who they also call their ‘family’. They socialize. They talk in the morning over coffee. They read the newspaper and play games. Most will have lunch, and for some, this is their only hot meal of the day.”

Located in downtown near the Chandler Public Library, the Senior Center was built in 1986 and provides a broad range of recreational and social activities for seniors – including an onsite weekday meal – that enhances the social, emotional and recreational needs of participants.

“What we like to focus on is making meaningful connections,” says Jackson. “That’s what life is about; meaningful relationships. We help stimulate those relationships by offering games and activities and excursions so they can interact with each other and with staff. It’s all about living and experiencing life and being surrounded by people you love and care about.”

Jackson says most of the activities at the Center require no fee, and field trips and excursions can cost as little as $5. Outside agencies supplement some of the Center’s activities with services such as legal consultations, blood pressure screenings, peer counseling and wheelchair and walker repair.

A number of seniors volunteer their time to work at the Center, serving meals, wiping down tables, setting up rooms or taking out the trash and recyclables. Jackson’s two sons, 18-year-old D.J. and 15-year-old Brody, have even joined the volunteer staff and helped out at events.

“When we go out in the community to promote the Senior Center, we say ‘come one time and you’ll want to come back’,” Jackson exclaimed. “Once they get here and see the hustle and bustle and energy that’s in this building, they’ll want to come back.”

City of Cottonwood Police and Fire Departments present a check for $10,030.00 to the 100 Club of Arizona


The  City of Cottonwood Police and Fire Departments personnel comprising the “Verde Valley Fallen Heroes Committee” presented a check for $10,030.00 to the 100 Club of Arizona on May 13. The 100 Club of Arizona is a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance to the families of police officers and firefighters who are killed or injured in the line of duty, provides financial assistance to public safety agencies who need help purchasing safety equipment, provides the children and spouses of public safety personnel with scholarships for college and provides other financial help to public safety agencies.

The Verde Valley Fallen Heroes Committee raised these funds through the 3rd Annual Fallen Heroes Golf Tournament at Verde Santa Fe Golf Course held on Saturday, April 25, 2015. This year’s event was a huge success and participants not only played a round of golf, they also participated in a gun raffle, a general raffle with great prizes and a live auction with autographed items from all Arizona professional sports teams.

The tournament and auctions raised $9,454.00. After the event, Cottonwood City Manager, Doug Bartosh, donated $546.00 to make it an even $10,000.00, which the highest amount raised in the history of this event.

The Verde Valley Fallen Heroes Committee would like to recognize all the businesses and organizations who donated products and/or money to help make this event such a great success.

– Tournament Sponsors – City of Cottonwood, Canyon Distributing (Coors Light), Pawn Palace, Law Enforcement Creations, Larry Green Chevrolet and Laserlyte.

– Verde Santa Fe Golf Course – Provided the golf course, raffle items, lunch and a great service.

– Donation of the gun for the gun raffle – Pawn Palace and Law Enforcement Creations

– Hole Sponsors – Signs 928 (also donated all needed signs), Cage Free Grooming, Old Town Frame Company, Trophies Unlimited, Laserlyte, Law Enforcement Creations, Pawn Palace, Joe Mulcaire Construction, Bedrock Landscape and Materials, Canyon Distributing, The Embroidery Shop, Yellow Pages.

– Donation items – Laserlyte, Law Enforcement Creations, Red Rock Dental, Funhavers, Canyon Distributing, Arizona Diamondbacks, Out of Africa Wildlife Park, Black Cow Café, Vinnies Pizza, Scottsdale Gun Club, Tan-Tastics Tanning Salon, Old Town Frame Company, Canine Country Club, Doug Bartosh, Sedona-Verde Valley Firefighter Charities, Money in the Mail.

– Live Auction Items – Phoenix Coyotes, Phoenix Suns, Arizona Cardinals and Kurt Warner’s First Things First Foundation.

The members and organizers of the Verde Valley Fallen Heroes Committee include:

Kevin Murie, Cottonwood Police Department
Josh Fradette, Cottonwood Police Department
Gareth Braxton, Cottonwood Police Department
Jim Iacovacci, Cottonwood Police Department (Volunteer)
Brandon Wacker, Cottonwood Fire Department
Steve Trautman, Cottonwood Fire Department
Melissa Stearley, Accounting

For further information please contact the Cottonwood Fire Department at 928-634-2741

Tempe Saluted for Veterans Programs and Services

The Arizona Department of Veterans’ Services and the Arizona Coalition for Military Families will recognize the City of Tempe during the inaugural Arizona Roadmap to Veteran Employment Summit.

The summit, a collaborative effort of public and private sector partners led by the Arizona Department of Veterans’ Services and the Arizona Coalition for Military Families, launches a statewide initiative to connect service members, veterans and their families to employment opportunities, training and resources.

The City of Tempe will be named the first Arizona Veteran Supportive Employer, a designation of the Arizona Roadmap to Veteran Employment for efforts to improve quality of life for veterans and their families. Additionally, Tempe will be announced as a Military/Veteran Resource Network Partner Organization, making it the first city in Arizona to earn this designation, based on the Guidelines for CARE for counties, cities and towns.

“Local veterans and their families sacrifice so much to serve our community. Tempe’s programs and services are a great way to show our gratitude and give back,” said Mayor Mark Mitchell. “Our military service members deserve personal and professional success. Our goal is to ensure they have the tools and support to help them achieve their dreams.”

As part of a multifaceted effort to help improve quality of life for veterans and their families, Tempe joined forces with local veterans and veteran service providers to create the Tempe Military and Veterans Working Group in 2013. The group created a strategic plan with four initiatives: establish a Tempe Veterans Commission; partner with the East Valley Veterans Education Center to establish a center that connects veterans and their families to resources, services and programs; create affordable housing projects for veterans and their families; and earn the Veterans Supportive City designation from the Arizona Coalition of Military Families. Tempe is pleased that much progress is being made on all fronts.

The Tempe City Council unanimously voted to establish the Tempe Veterans Commission on Jan. 8. On Feb. 28, the city formalized the partnership with the East Valley Veterans Education Center through a Community Resource Fair and Celebration. Last month, the City Council adopted a resolution to pursue an affordable housing project for veterans. Additionally, in October, Tempe launched the eighth Veterans Court in Arizona.

For more information on Tempe’s veterans efforts, visit


Are you someone who spent their childhood #GrowingUpGilbert?

The Town of Gilbert, AZ recently released a campaign  highlighting the great things that those who grew up or are growing up in Gilbert are doing for the community.

The campaign explores the unique stories of residents who were born and raised here, and grew up to give back to their community.Check out those Gilbertonians who have been featured thus far: 

David Tirado


Dana Berchman


Emery Miller


Councilmember Ben Cooper

Share your “Growing Up Gilbert” story by using #GrowingUpGilbert on social media or by emailing

“Growing Up Gilbert” is a sneak peek into the theme of the 2015 Digital State of the Town, which will preimiere in February.

Follow @GilbertYourTown on Twitter or Gilbert Town Hall on Facebook as new “Growing up Gilbert” stories are released!