Ambassador Steering Committee

Meet our FY21 Steering Committee

The Ambassador Steering Committee plays a pivotal role in ensuring our Ambassador Program aligns with the organization’s key objectives and mission. Members advise on the strategic direction of the Ambassador Program, serving as a sounding board for emerging initiatives, along with supporting the program implementation.

Committee Members

Ambassador Program Value

“Building a robust economy and growing new industries in our region requires collaboration.  The GPEC ambassador program creates and informs dynamic leaders to support this vital task”.

Ambassador Program Value

“Being part of the growth process is rewarding to me. My wife and I have lived in the Valley since 1972 and have watched as the area grew and matured.”

Wally Campbell

Committee Member since FY21

Councilmember, City of Goodyear


Gene Carl

Committee Member since FY21

Manager, Public Sector Enterprise Sales, Cox Communications

Larry Cox

Committee Member since FY18

Vice President of Culture, Sunstate Equipment Co.


Advice for New GPEC Ambassadors

“Never let an opportunity to meet someone new go by. You never know who that somebody might be.”

Importance of Economic Development for the Community

“Growing our communities in thoughtful and strategic ways helps to protect the overall economy through the cycles, and provides diverse employment opportunities while considering the socio-economic, environmental and political aspects unique to our 22 member communities.”

Involvement in the Ambassador Program

“GPEC provides an opportunity to work with other business leaders to develop and implement a diverse economic vision for the future of Arizona.”

Laura Davis

Committee Member since FY18

Workplace Consultant, Atmosphere Commercial Interiors

Andrea Drozdowicz

Committee Member since FY18

Senior Vice President, Investor Real Estate Advisory, Wells Fargo

Don Helton

Committee Member since FY18

Director of Business Development, Brycon Construction

Investment in GPEC

“Our company invests with GPEC because we understand and are also committed to the importance of building a stronger community by bringing growth and opportunity to the marketplace.”

Memorable Ambassador Experience

“Being able to see firsthand what is happening all over the Valley is inspiring. Touring new enterprises that recently moved to the region is especially exciting as the leaders of those enterprises always tell a wonderful story about why they chose the Greater Phoenix region.”

Favorite Ambassador Experience

“All have been great, but the one that stands way out was the helicopter ride over the different SRP lakes.”

Garrett King

Committee Member since FY21

Team Lead, Events and Entertainment, Arizona Diamondbacks

Gretchen Kitchel

Committee Member since FY21

Executive Principal, Economic Development, SRP

David Patch

Committee Member since FY18

Sales Account Executive, Air Products and Chemicals

Being Part of the Community

“I feel like I’m part of something dynamic and growing, but most of all my family and friends are here and I love them very much.”

Value of the Ambassador Program

“The value received is broad-based and is far-reaching. Whether we are explaining to others what we have learned from our close-knit discussions on critical economic issues/topics, or how and why a company decides to locate to the Phoenix metro area, there is never a loss of information to be had and learned by being a GPEC Ambassador.”


“It is the premier source for regional economic development news, access to information regarding new business opportunities for my company, and networking with other professionals who seek to further the growth and diversity of the Arizona economy.”

Michael Patterson

Committee Member since FY18

Partner, Spencer Fane LLP

Mayor Christian Price

Committee Member since FY18

Mayor, City of Maricopa

Rock Rickert

Committee Member since FY18

Principal, Business Development, Archicon

Favorite Ambassador Experience

“My favorite GPEC Ambassador experience was probably the A.T. Still University tour. I drove past the building for years and had no idea the tremendous offerings and impact they have in the community. Ambassador tours as well as educational events are always informative and definitely worthwhile!”

Janine Solley

Committee Member since FY18

Economic Development Director, City of Apache Junction

All Certified Ambassadors


Chase Kassel Acronis
David Patch Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.
Elissa Rubman Alliance Bank of Arizona
Calvin Bovee APS
Michael Denby APS
Kelly Patton APS
Rock Rickert Archicon Architecture and Interiors, L.C.
Heath Anderson Arizona At Work- Maricopa County
Kevin Dumcum Arizona At Work- Maricopa County
Garrett King Arizona Diamondbacks
Mara Defilippis ASU
Caden Gillespie ASU
Jodie Gutierrez ASU
Paola Hidalgo ASU
Gregory Raupp ASU
Chris Richardson ASU
Kelly Sandin ASU
Cher Stevens ASU – College of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Robert Cox ASU – Office of Research and Economic Affairs
Jeffrey Anderson Atmosphere Commercial Interiors
Laura Davis Atmosphere Commercial Interiors
Karen Bottesch Bank of America
Christy Withgott Banner Health
Paige Heavey Bridge Relocation Concierge
Don Helton BRYCON Construction
Billy Price Burns & McDonnell
Brion Crum Caliber Companies
Bill Bayless CBRE
Pat Feeney CBRE
Taylor Hick CBRE
Maggie Niescier CBRE
Cathy Teeter CBRE
Vanessa Vogel CBRE
Carly Figman Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI)
Ann Marie Rucker Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI)
Robin Barker City of Apache Junction
Janine Solley City of Apache Junction
Elan Vallender City of Apache Junction
Lisa Lantz City of Avondale
Suzanne Boyles City of Buckeye
Fernando Garcia City of Casa Grande
Mayor Craig McFarland City of Casa Grande
Ryan Kaup City of Chandler
Thomas Doyle City of El Mirage
Daniel Benson City of Glendale
Wally Campbell City of Goodyear
Laura Kaino City of Goodyear
Mayor Georgia Lord City of Goodyear
Mayor Christian Price City of Maricopa
Adam Shipley City of Maricopa
Karen Calivas City of Peoria
Kirsten Hall City of Peoria
Susana Trasente City of Peoria
David Valenzuela City of Peoria
Juan Batres City of Phoenix
Phil Bradstock City of Phoenix
Kedrick Ellison City of Phoenix
Laura French City of Phoenix
Melissa Huffman City of Phoenix
Pam Lindley City of Phoenix
Joseph Macewan City of Phoenix
Martin Perez City of Phoenix
Tanya Pettway City of Phoenix
Michelle Pierson City of Phoenix
Karla Scott City of Phoenix
Claudia Whitehead City of Phoenix
Denise Yanez City of Phoenix
Josh Utterback City of Scottsdale
Jeanine Jerkovic City of Surprise
Maria Laughner City of Tempe
Parrish Spisz City of Tempe
Thomas Brophy Colliers International
Phillip Hernandez Colliers International
Paula Boca-Bommarito CopperPoint Insurance Companies
Mitchelle Makanjuola CopperPoint Insurance Companies
Jessica Morin CoStar Group
Sheldon Caldwell-Meeks Cox Communications
Gene Carl Cox Communications
Ellen Joyce Cox Communications
Jason Malcolm Cresa
Marissa Mercuri Cresa
Joshua Rodriguez Cresa
Ronan McNulty Cushman & Wakefield
Candace Thrush Cushman & Wakefield
Matt Even Deloitte
Michael Loeschen Deloitte
Jacob Weinberg Deloitte
Rick Dircks Dircks Moving & Logistics
Chris Petroff DPR Construction
Michael King Gammage & Burnham
Debbie Hartland Goodmans Interior Structures
Bryan Smith Goodwill of Central and Northern Arizona
Isac Artzi Grand Canyon University
Haley Fagerlie Grand Canyon University
Dwight Farris Grand Canyon University
Stephanie Handley Graycor Construction
Mackensie Garretson Highnoon
Russell Skuse Horrocks Engineers
Kristen Howard IMEG Corp.
Dennis Wiensch Industrial Storage
Richard Woolery Industrial Storage
Raghu Marwaha IntraEdge
Kirk McClure JE Dunn
Bill Honsaker JLL
Anthony Lydon JLL
Alyson Murney JLL
Damian Glaze Kitchell
Valerie Kelly Kitchell
Candace Rosauro Layton Construction
Matt Nebeker Lee & Associates
Marc Pierce Lee & Associates
Michael Stavross M Culinary
Lee Deluca Maricopa Corporate College
Emilio Cabrera Maricopa County Community Colleges
John Catapano Maricopa County Community Colleges
Kimberly Faust Maricopa County Community Colleges
James Jones Maricopa County Community Colleges
Patti O’Brien Maricopa County Community Colleges
Dana Saar Maricopa County Community Colleges
Harvey Smith Maricopa County Community Colleges
Julie Stiak Maricopa County Community Colleges
Sara Zappia Maricopa County Community Colleges
Michael Voss Mesa Community College
Tim Dillingham MidFirst Bank
Matthew Avila Mortenson
Tammy Carr Mortenson
Chase Farnsworth Mortenson
Mark Dallmeier MSS
Michael Hawksworth MSS
Keith Latchaw MSS
Kent Thomas MUFG Union Bank
Todd Kinney Okland Construction
Jonathan Sylvie Page
Kim Ho Phoenix Children’s Hospital
Michelle Major Phoenix Children’s Hospital
Steve Reese Phoenix Suns
Lourdes Sierra PNC Financial Services Group
Kyle Steinbuch PNC Financial Services Group
Cathleen Walker PNC Financial Services Group
Ali Dionne Public Policy Partners
Jeff Dalton Renaissance Companies
Gretchen Kitchel Salt River Project (SRP)
Karla Moran Salt River Project (SRP)
Marc Valenzuela Salt River Project (SRP)
Mike Miller Savills-Studley
Melanie Burm Scottsdale Community College
Milena Dankenbring Scottsdale Community College
Gregory Falls Sherman & Howard
Azim Hameed Sherman & Howard
Matt Hasketh Sherman & Howard
Kim Poole Skanska
Smita Mehta SLM Land Holdings
Anita Verma SLM Land Holdings
Gerald Morales Snell & Wilmer
Rachel Andrews Social Television Network (STN)
Jody Isaac Social Television Network (STN)
Eric Sperling Social Television Network (STN)
Larry Holly Southwest Gas Corporation
Mike Patterson Spencer Fane LLP
Larry Cox Sunstate Equipment Company
Mike Martella Town of Gilbert
Doreen Cott Town of Queen Creek
Marissa Garnett Town of Queen Creek
Jennifer Lindley Town of Queen Creek
Michael LeVault Town of Youngtown
Windy Breck Transwestern Commercial Services
Mikaela Fink University of Arizona
Justin Finnerty University of Arizona
Cali Metallo University of Arizona
Mark Strickling University of Arizona
Julie Trujillo University of Arizona
Gloria Verdin University of Arizona
Jeffrey Hendrickson University of Phoenix
Mike Chadwick ViaWest Group
Roger Beguiristain Wells Fargo Bank
Andrea Drozdowicz Wells Fargo Bank
Peter Drozodowicz Wist Office Products Company

Interested in getting involved?

Contact our Engagement Strategy and Marketing Manager, Lindsay Hahn, at or 602-262-8609.