Local Titans of Healthcare and Medical Research—Barrow and TGen—Receive $3 Million from Piper Trust to Advance Transformative, Lifesaving Work

Dec. 3, 2018 20:36 UTC

PHOENIX--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Two world-class healthcare and research institutions received a total of $3 million from Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust in support of their quests to advance scientific and medical discovery—and save lives.

Barrow Neurological Foundation received a $2 million grant to support the new Barrow Neuroplex, a state-of-the-art neurological institute dedicated to enhancing patient treatment, accelerating medical discovery, and saving more lives. Piper Trust’s grant will help fund construction of a five-story centralized space that brings together clinical research, neurology, and neurosurgery to provide lifesaving care for patients, increased research space, and improved collaboration among staff.

The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) received a $1 million grant to support the John S. McCain III Endowed Chair in Brain Cancer Research. TGen has done extensive research into improved treatment for glioblastoma, a rare, aggressive brain cancer that led to the death of U.S. Senator John McCain of Arizona. The new endowed chair position allows TGen to turn genetic research breakthroughs into medical advances that will transform brain cancer treatment. The endowed chair will be the highest honor given to a member of the TGen faculty. Having a premier scientist paired with the McCain name will allow TGen to honor the late senator publicly and in perpetuity.

“Piper Trust is privileged to help further the missions of Barrow Neurological Institute and TGen—we are so fortunate that these world-renowned healthcare and medical research organizations reside in Maricopa County, yet benefit the world with their leading medical treatments and care,” said Mary Jane Rynd, president and CEO, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.

Following are grants awarded July through November 2018; grants for this period total more than $6.86 million.


Jazz in Arizona, Inc.
Support efforts to strengthen nonprofit board governance practices and leadership (Good Governance Fund).
$15,000 / 12 months

Jewish Community Association of Greater Phoenix
Support Holocaust education through Violins of Hope programming.
$60,000 / 12 months

The Phoenix Symphony
Support strategy to strengthen financial capacity.
$1,000,000 / 12 months

Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West, Inc.
Develop and implement a comprehensive marketing and communications initiative.
$468,300 / 24 months


Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona
Implement modified mentor retention plan and training.
$108,500 / 24 months

First Place AZ
Support efforts to strengthen nonprofit board governance practices and leadership (Good Governance Fund).
$15,000 / 12 months

Southern Arizona Association for the Visually Impaired (SAAVI)
Implement life skills program for blind children in Maricopa County.
$80,000 / 18 months


Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Phoenix
Expand STEM programming for youth via partnership with Woz U Education Program.
$500,000 / 24 months

Junior Achievement of Arizona, Inc.
Support efforts to strengthen nonprofit board governance practices and leadership (Good Governance Fund).
$15,000 / 12 months


Barrow Neurological Foundation
Support new Neuroplex building to advance care in neurology (Capital Campaign).
$2,000,000 / 36 months

Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen)
Support the John S. McCain III Endowed Chair in Brain Cancer Research.
$1,000,000 / 48 months


Down Syndrome Network, Inc.
Expand “Aging Matters” program for older adults with Down syndrome and their caregivers.
$78,800 / 24 months

Esperança, Inc.
Implement health education programs for Latino older adults.
$300,000 / 36 months

Stardust Non-Profit Building Supplies, Inc.
Support efforts to strengthen nonprofit board governance practices and leadership (Good Governance Fund).
$15,000 / 12 months


Arizona Community Foundation
Support funder collaborative for enduring nonprofit collaborations in Arizona.
$150,000 / 36 months

Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, Inc.
Support 12 Maricopa County nonprofits to participate in the Listen for Good project.
$180,000 / 12 months

Valley Leadership
Support Pivot Toward Impact programming.
$300,000 / 36 months

Wildfire (formerly Arizona Community Action Association, Inc.)
Identify technology solution to improve access to family assistance services (fiscal agent for Utility Assistance Network).
$75,000 / 12 months


Piper Fellows are eligible to apply for Piper Fellows Organizational Enhancement Awards of up to $50,000 to support a specific project that addresses an opportunity or challenge facing a Fellow’s organization. A total of $150,000 was awarded during this reporting period to the following organizations:

Arizona Autism United (Piper Fellow Dr. Aaron Blocher-Rubin)
Expand habilitation and speech/language services.
$50,000 / 12 months

Arizona School for the Arts (Piper Fellow Leah Fregulia)
Support fundraising feasibility study and collateral for capital campaign.
$50,000 / 12 months

Valley of the Sun United Way (Piper Fellow Amy Schwabenlender)
Explore and develop Hub for Poverty Solutions.
$50,000 / 12 months

Piper Trust’s ATLAS ProgramATLAS is designed to strengthen the organizational and operational structure of nonprofits; through a Trust-initiated process, select nonprofits (grantees) become a cohort and respectively assess lifecycle stages and develop comprehensive plans for building organizational capacity. The following organizations each received $50,000 ATLAS grants totaling $350,000 during this period. Arts and Culture: Act One; Children: Association for Supportive Child Care, Maggie’s Place, one•n•ten, Open Hearts; Education: Junior Achievement of Arizona; Older Adults: ICM Food & Clothing Bank.

About Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust:

Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust supports organizations that enrich health, well-being, and opportunity for the people of Maricopa County, Arizona. Since it began awarding grants in 2000, Piper Trust has invested more than $426 million in local nonprofits and programs. Piper Trust grantmaking areas are healthcare and medical research, children, older adults, arts and culture, education, and religious organizations. For more information: visit pipertrust.org | @PiperTrust | Facebook.



Karen Leland, 480-556-7125
Chief Communications Officer
Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust



Source: Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust

Back to news