Arizona Center for Civic Leadership names 36 new Flinn-Brown Fellows for 2018

March 8, 2018

By Matt Ellsworth

The Arizona Center for Civic Leadership, a nonpartisan program of the Flinn Foundation, has competitively selected 36 Arizonans for the 2018 cohort of its flagship Flinn-Brown Civic Leadership Academy.

The new Flinn-Brown Fellows include the first from Wellton and Prescott Valley, as well as residents of Kingman, Yuma, Sierra Vista, Flagstaff, and the Tucson and Phoenix regions.

The Fellows, who come from a wide range of backgrounds, work experiences, and political perspectives, will participate in a 12-part seminar series starting in mid-March led by well-known Arizona policy and political experts.

The Academy’s seminars are the start of a long-term affiliation with the Flinn-Brown Network for these high-potential leaders. The network functions as an ongoing personal and professional support system for the Fellows as they advance in their careers and pursue roles as state-level elected officials, state-agency executives, policy advisors, or members of state boards or commissions. The 2018 cohort increases the size of the Flinn-Brown Network to more than 300 people.

Fellows represent both the private and public sectors and work in business, government, education, and nonprofits. Flinn-Brown is designed for accomplished individuals committed to pursuing roles in state-level civic leadership.

“The 2018 Fellows will further enhance the Flinn-Brown Network, which provides long-term support for Fellows to help advance Arizona,” said Nancy Welch, director of the Arizona Center for Civic Leadership at the Flinn Foundation. “The new Fellows are committed to serving the state of Arizona and Flinn-Brown can help them be even more successful.”

The Arizona Center for Civic Leadership was launched to strengthen civic leadership throughout Arizona, with a special focus on state-level service. The Flinn-Brown Civic Leadership Academy is sponsored in partnership with the Tucson-based Thomas R. Brown Foundations.

The Flinn Foundation is a Phoenix-based private, nonprofit, grantmaking organization, founded by Dr. Robert S. Flinn and his wife, Irene P. Flinn, in 1965, with the mission, “To improve the quality of life in Arizona to benefit future generations.” Along with the Arizona Center for Civic Leadership, the Foundation supports the advancement of Arizona’s bioscience sector, arts and culture, and the Flinn Scholars Program. The Thomas R. Brown Foundations supports solutions to community and state issues through strategic grants and educational programs.

2018 Flinn-Brown Fellows

(Listing includes name, position, and city of residence)


Erin Cochran: General Manager, Mohave Pest Control, Kingman
Kate Morley: Mobility Planner, Northern Arizona Intergovernmental Public Transportation Authority, Flagstaff
Erika Philpot: Human Resources Director, Coconino County, Flagstaff
Bill Regner: Town Council Member, Town of Clarkdale, Clarkdale
Jodi Rooney: Town Council Member, Town of Prescott Valley, Prescott Valley
Risha VanderWey: Coconino County Superintendent of Schools, Coconino County, Flagstaff
Rose Winkeler: Senior Civil Deputy County Attorney, Coconino County, Flagstaff

Alexandra Arboleda: Of Counsel, The Storey Lawyers, Phoenix
Mohamed Arif: Waiver Evaluation Manager, Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, Phoenix
Ben Blink: Budget Analyst, Governor’s Office of Strategic Planning and Budgeting, Phoenix
Troy Campbell: Assistant Director, Fraternity & Sorority Life, Arizona State University, Tempe
Brian Garcia: Law Student, Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Tempe
Brad Kendrex: Vice President, Administration and Finance, Chandler-Gilbert Community College, Queen Creek
Elaine Kessler: Owner, Elaine Kessler Photography, LLC, Gilbert
Andy Kvesic: Chief Counsel & Legal Division Director, Arizona Corporation Commission, Phoenix
Vince Lujan: Chief Executive Officer, Salt River Devco, Scottsdale
Candace Park: Arizona National Guard State Public Affairs Officer, Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs/Arizona National Guard, Gilbert
Jennifer Pawlik: Executive Trainer, Spalding Education International, Chandler
Pearlette Ramos: Deputy Assistant Director, Arizona Department of Economic Security, Division of Developmental Disabilities, Avondale
Derrik Rochwalik: Associate, Kyle Moyer & Company, Phoenix
Mark Sanders: Manager, Border Liaison Unit-ADOT Innovations Group, Arizona Department of Transportation, Phoenix
Larry Sandigo: Pro Bono Manager, Florence Immigrant & Refugee Rights Project, Glendale
Raquel Terán: Campaign Director, Planned Parenthood of Arizona, Phoenix
William Valencia: Director, Strategic Initiatives, Arizona State University, Phoenix
Rachel Yanof: Executive Director, Achieve60AZ, Tempe
Richard Yarbough: Vice President/Administrator, Pilgrim Rest Foundation, Inc., Glendale
Rosalva Zimmerman: Statewide Program Manager, Director’s Office of Community Engagement, Arizona Department of Economic Security, Phoenix

Russell McCloud: County Supervisor, Yuma County, Yuma
Cecilia McCollough: Mayor, Town of Wellton, Wellton

Ricardo Hernandez: Deputy County School Superintendent/CFO, Pima County School Superintendent’s Office, Tucson
Jacob Jones-Martinez: Program Coordinator, Cochise County Health & Social Services, Sierra Vista
Nikki Lee: Project/Product Manager, Agren, Inc., Tucson
Aaron Rottenstein: Account Vice President/Wealth Advisor, UBS Financial Services, Inc., Tucson
Ben Standifer: Chief Executive Officer, RMPC Habilitative Services, LLC, Tucson
John Winchester: Outreach Coordinator, University of Arizona, Tucson
John Zimmerman: Program Manager, Arizona Department of Corrections, Tucson