Recognition of Resilience
"In ordinary times, we need to be resilient if we're going to thrive and grow. But these are no ordinary times. 2020 has been a year of unprecedented upheaval."
- Elizabeth Wentz, Director
Watch the inspiring stories
About the recognition
This past year, community champions have adapted to multiple pressing issues, including the pandemic’s health effects, the economic shock of safety closures, and the unacceptable state of social and racial justice. And then there’s the chronic challenge: heat. A record-breaking summer that only intensified these compound threats. Champions across sectors have shown incredible resilience and worked tirelessly to address these challenges. Among the many champions, KER and the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust have identified three entities to recognize for their inspirational efforts to strengthen community resilience.
Adaptation: United Dairymen of Arizona and Arizona Food Bank Network
Demonstrating flexible, innovative, and creative approaches during a time of rapid change.
In 2020, 15% of Phoenix families reported food insecurity, and food banks saw a 28% increase in usage. Like the Kerr family, local dairy farmers adapted their entire production to distribute millions of pounds of milk to families in need.
Equity: RAIL CDC
Addressing the uneven distribution of vulnerabilities within communities to ensure that resources and prosperity benefit everyone.
With a focus on the Mesa and Tempe corridor, RAIL CDC went door to door to check-in with local business owners. They minority-owned businesses survive by teaching them to apply for grants and educating them on city resources.
Social Cohesion: Wildfire
Strengthening how communities connect and respond to challenges or opportunities together.
During a global pandemic, Arizona families had to choose between paying their rent, keeping the lights on, or buying groceries. To make applying for aid easier, Wildfire collaborated with local agencies to develop a digital tool that cut down application times to approximately 32 minutes.
A Fervor Creative Production
Don Newlen - Executive Producer, Director of Photography, Editor
Drew Moraca - Cinematographer, Associate Editor, Colorist, VFX
Matthew Torres-Gomez - Camera Operator
Theresa Koscuisko - Associate Producer
Angie Rodgers, Arizona Food Bank Network
Wendy De La Pena, Arizona Food Bank Network
Roxanne Helman, United Dairymen of Arizona
Bill Kerr, Kerr Family Dairy
Wesley Kerr, Kerr Family Dairy
Laura Suarez, RAIL CDC
Augie Gastelum, RAIL CDC
Ryan Winkle, RAIL CDC
Cynthia Zwick, Wildfire
Dominic Braham, RICE
Lena Madini, RICE
ASU Knowledge Exchange for Resilience
Elizabeth Wentz, Director, Narrator
Patricia Solis, Executive Director, Content Support
Lillian Ruelas, Events Coordinator, Logistics
Mary Jane Rynd - Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust
Karen Leland - Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust
Jowan Thornton - Salvation Army
Crystal Alvarez - Knowledge Exchange for Resilience