In April 2014, The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation made a $500,000 gift to the Arizona Burn Foundation (ABF), the largest gift to the organization in its nearly 50-year history. ABF recently undertook a $5 million strategic growth campaign to fund its expansion throughout the state. The only organization of its kind in Arizona, ABF offers emotional and financial support for individuals who have survived critical burns. The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation gift, which contributes to the campaign, will allow ABF to undertake new prevention and outreach programs for the benefit of individuals throughout Arizona.
A crucial part of ABF’s plan for the future is a new Foundation Center in Phoenix. This center will provide indispensable infrastructure as the organization expands its programs. Individuals will be able to come to the center for volunteer training. In addition, the center will house educational programs about proper smoke-alarm installation and burn-camp counseling. The recent gift has allowed ABF to begin construction of the Foundation Center.
Recently, the Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS held its annual Night for Life Gala in cooperation with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona and Richard P. Stahl. During the event, Bob and Renee Parsons announced that their foundation would match, dollar for dollar, every donation made over the course of the program.
The event included the personal stories of seven courageous individuals who revealed their HIV status and personal stories for the first time. Moved by their bravery, Bob and Renee Parsons pledged an additional million dollars to the organization.
Bob Parsons, who lost two cousins to AIDS in the 1980s, wished to commemorate their lives and to emphasize the need to break the stigma that surrounds HIV.
Support for the Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS is more important than ever, as rates of HIV in Arizona continue to rise. A 2012 study estimated that 17,000 individuals in Arizona were living with the disease, about 18 percent of whom were unaware of the infection. The center serves more than 30,000 HIV-positive and at-risk individuals in the state.
A prominent nonprofit organization located in Phoenix, Arizona, Circle the City delivers valuable medical care and human services to individuals in need in the greater Phoenix area. Through its Medical Respite Center for men and women in need, Circle the City provides a place for patients to recover from a full range of medical procedures and avoid having to return to the streets to recover.
A 50-bed facility with medical professionals from many different specialties, the Circle the City Medical Respite Center assigns every incoming patient to a case manager who connects patients with employment resources, benefits, and permanent housing opportunities. Patients benefit from access to services such as substance abuse treatment, psychiatric consultations, AA groups, and mental health therapy. The Medical Respite Center at Circle the City also offers a community reintegration program, which uses activities such as sporting events and local museum trips to support the healing process. After their treatment is complete, more than 75 percent of all patients at the Medical Respite Center find permanent or transitional housing.
Over the first few months of 2014, The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation has donated more than $3.5 million to charities and institutions in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. These donations have gone to support a wide range of philanthropic efforts, such as Birdies for Breast Cancer. This organization, founded by LPGA golfer Cristie Kerr, funds breast cancer research and has undertaken various preventative programs in Phoenix. Birdies for Breast Cancer received $100,000 from the foundation.
Bob Parsons and his wife also pledged $1 million to the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix and $2 million to Make-A-Wish Arizona on the occasion of its annual Wish Ball. The Parkinson Center grant will fund research on treatment options for people living with Parkinson’s disease and provide support for them and their families. The donation to Make-A-Wish Arizona will help the organization improve the quality of life for children with catastrophic illnesses.
Another Phoenix-area beneficiary is the Arizona Burn Foundation, which received $500,000, the largest gift in the organization’s history. This foundation provides emotional and financial support to people with burns.
Since GoDaddy.com founder and executive chairman Bob Parsons became the owner of Mississippi’s Southern Thunder Harley-Davidson, placing it within Scottsdale, Arizona-based YAM Worldwide, Inc.’s family of businesses, he has sought ways to not only celebrate local motorcycle clubs and culture, but also to work with them in order to create better communities.
Earlier this year, Bob Parsons commenced planning for a major event that will take place on June 7 in Southaven, Mississippi, the home of Southern Thunder. The event will celebrate the dealership’s reopening with food, libations, and musical performances by local acts such as 714, Nuttin Fancy, and Trullie Brae. While the event will be free with a motorcycle endorsement, donations will be accepted to support Boys & Girls Clubs of North Mississippi, which maintains five clubhouses benefiting over 2,000 youth in the area. Ticket and T-shirt sales, as well as a portion of vendor proceeds, will also benefit the organization.
On April 12, the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa hosted the 20th annual Muhammad Ali’s Celebrity Fight Night. Thanks to sponsorship from the Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation and others, the event brought together celebrities from across the United States to support the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center and many other charities. The 2014 incarnation of the event raised a total of $8 million.<br><br>
Attendees had the opportunity to enjoy musical performances from the likes of Kenny Rogers, The Band Perry, David Foster, and Michael Bublé. The event also included a live auction, complete with sale items such as a private dinner at the home of Reba McEntire, an evening with Robert De Niro and Billy Crystal, and a space flight on the XCOR Lynx. Later in the night, GoDaddy founder and longtime philanthropist Bob Parsons announced a $1 million donation from the Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation.
Recently, Harley-Davidson of Scottsdale and its owner, Bob Parsons, announced that it would begin construction of a new dealership in the Scottsdale Airpark. At 146,000 square feet, the new building will be the largest Harley-Davidson retail location in the world. Other large Harley-Davidson dealerships include a 109,000-square-foot location in Daytona Beach, Florida, and Red Rock Harley-Davidson in Las Vegas, which measures 104,000 square feet. The new location in Scottsdale will set the new record by a wide margin.
The new Scottsdale dealership will sit on land formerly owned by the closed Airpark Chrysler, northeast of the existing location. The plan calls for a two-story building on 4.28 acres. The design includes 20,000 square feet of service space with glass walls so that customers can watch while technicians work on their bikes, as well as 87,000 square feet of underground parking and storage space. The new location will also include customer lounges and an event space for concerts. At present, the opening is scheduled for the late spring of 2015.