SaddleBrooke Community Outreach

23rd SBCO Annual Food Drive a Resounding Success!

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

The compassionate residents of SaddleBrooke and SaddleBrooke Ranch made the 23rd annual SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) Food Drive a record-breaking success. This year the food drive raised $226,647.83 in donations! This is an enormous increase compared to the $91,798 raised in 2020. The families assisted by the Tri-Community Food Bank (TCFB), as well as its board of directors and volunteers, are deeply grateful for this outpouring of support.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating economic effect across the country. Many families who have never before needed the services of a food bank are lining up for assistance. Thanks to your generosity, the food bank will be able to assist 515 households, including 1,518 people. The food bank serves 426 children and 305 seniors.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, the food drive was again limited to monetary contributions made online or with checks. All monetary contributions will go directly to grocery purchases and related expenses. SBCO and TCFB are all-volunteer organizations and are IRS 501(c)(3) and Arizona non-profit charitable organizations, so donations made to these organizations are tax deductible.

We hope in 2022 to be able to experience the friendship and community spirit associated with donations of food, in addition to money. Meanwhile, SBCO and the Tri-Community Food Bank thank the many SaddleBrooke and SaddleBrooke Ranch residents who made such a great difference in the lives of those in need.

A special thank you is owed to the SaddleBrooke Ranch Unit food drive captains—Unit 1: Mark Dickston; Unit 2: Jeff and Dale Farland and Edie Kellogg; Unit 3: Linda Nicholson; Unit 4a: Deb Sandin; Unit 4b and 6: Marian Bianchini; Unit 7: Linda Shannon-Hills; Unit 8a: Pam Blaess and Maia Schenkel; Unit 8b: Mardiece Patrick; Unit 9a: Erin and Corbin Newman; Unit 9b: Cyndy Pylkka; Unit 10: Donna Birch; Units 14A&B: Anthony Zoellener; Unit 16A: Terry Zimmerman; Unit 16B: John Green; Unit 16C: Glenna Matthews; Unit 17: Pat Albu and Gail Cowan; Unit 46A: Barry and Mary Milner; Unit 46B: Mike Bosky and Ken De Leo; and Unit 47: Charlene Goodnight.

Denise Anthony Becomes SBCO President for 2021-22

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

Denise Anthony, who most recently served as the executive vice president of SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO), is taking over as the organization’s new president, effective April 12. She brings to the position an extensive background as an SBCO volunteer, from sorting books for Kids’ Closet to serving on the educational committee and chairing enrichment grants. Her work with the educational committee involved visiting school administrators regarding grant applications and reviewing school programs funded by SBCO. In addition, she has participated in SBCO’s annual Walkathon and Food Drive and tutored math at local elementary schools.

Denise and her husband, Skip, moved to SaddleBrooke from Rochester, N.Y. in 2013. One of their sons lives in Denver and the other in Tucson, making it easy to travel and see their three grandsons, ages five, seven, and 10. Denise spent her entire 25-year career as an educator, for one year in Pennsylvania and then in Rochester. She taught 8th grade math for 15 years and then became director of professional development and eventually assistant superintendent. Denise loves working directly with local kids and teachers. She finds helping others in need to be very gratifying. As she notes, “Arizona schools are funded at a level that does not allow for art, music, and many extra-curricular activities. That’s why SBCO funds robotics teams, art and sewing clubs, Future Farmers of America programs, swim lessons, and little league baseball teams. SBCO is helping to round out the educational experiences provided to local kids.”

As one of her most memorable moments as an SBCO volunteer, Denise recalls being at Kids’ Closet and meeting a little boy, age six, who had just lost his mom. Every time he returns to Kids’ Closet (he’s now nine), he gives Denise a big hug.

As the new president, her first priority is to restore our programs to their pre-COVID-19 level. Secondly, she wants to inform members directly about SBCO’s activities through a monthly email blast and finally, to involve more people in the organization’s work.

SBCO Announces 2021-22 Board of Directors

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) has elected a new slate of officers for 2021-22. They assume their roles on April 12. SBCO is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to providing food, clothing, and educational opportunities for students in communities along the over 100 mile corridor from Catalina to Miami, Ariz. The new board includes: president: Denise Anthony; executive VP: Ann Coziahr; recording secretary: Marcia Van Ommeran; recording secretary: Cheryl Smith; corresponding secretary: Karen Green; treasurer: Camille Esterman; assistant treasurer: Esther Moen; VP education: Steve Sahl; VP education: Susan Barnes; VP Kids’ Closet: Jan Olsson; VP Kids’ Closet: Michelle Schroeder; communications: Nancy McCluskey Moore; membership: Andrea Stephens; membership: Betty Ryan; scholarship endowment: George Nersesian; special events: Beth Fedor; special events: Mary Hojnacki; Teen Closet: Vivian Errico; Golden Goose rep.: Melanie Stout; and past president: Steve Groth.

Photos of all incoming board members are posted on the SBCO website at

Giving Back: The SBCO Scholarship Endowment Program

Ron Andrea

Susan and Ed Barnes moved to SaddleBrooke in 2016 from Brookfield, Wis. Susan is a retired teacher, counselor, and school administrator, and Ed worked as a medical physicist. Ed writes:

“My contribution to the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach [SBCO] Scholarship Endowment Fund was inspired by a series of visits to high schools in the Copper Corridor to interview students requesting scholarship support from SBCO. I was extremely impressed with the strength of character and fortitude of these students. Many were living in extreme poverty, some being raised by a single parent or grandparent, with multiple children to support, and others from families victimized by the closure of mines a few years ago. Most of these students were employed and contributing financially to the basic necessities of the family. At the same time, they were excelling in their school work, leading their class academically and also, in their “spare time,” participating in extracurricular activities. These students are the backbone and future of their communities. While Susan and I both continue to enjoy serving the kids of the Copper Corridor through volunteering our time and talent, we believe it’s vitally important to support the Scholarship Endowment Fund initiative. We encourage others wishing to make a lasting contribution to support the education of future generations to consider making a gift to this fund as your legacy to those that need our help.”

Susan and Ed realize how education has made a difference in their lives, and they have both made it their life’s work to help others access the same opportunities they’ve enjoyed. Ed states, “We know what hard work is, what it means to dream and to be inspired to make dreams a reality—a common trait I see in the SBCO scholarship applicants.”

If you feel as Susan and Ed do, and want to make a meaningful, lasting difference in the lives of students, consider making a gift to the SBCO Scholarship Endowment Program. Scholarship applicants are carefully selected by a team of SBCO volunteers based on their financial need, grades, and community service. Once they receive a scholarship, they are assigned to an SBCO volunteer mentor. The mentor provides encouragement and support to ensure each student continues to be eligible each semester by taking a full schedule of classes and maintaining his or her grades.

Endowment gifts can be delayed by making the endowment a beneficiary in your trust or estate plan. Those over age 71 can reduce additional income taxes on their annual IRA distribution by having a portion of their distribution sent directly to the SBCO Scholarship Endowment Fund by their financial institution. Finally, one can simply write a tax-deductible check.

Because only the earnings on donations are used for scholarships, the principal amount donated lasts forever. The minimum donation to the Scholarship Endowment Fund is $5,000. Always consult your financial advisor about the benefits of charitable contributions.

The SBCO Scholarship Endowment Fund is managed by the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona. All checks must be made payable to the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona (address 5049 E. Broadway, Suite 201, Tucson, Arizona 85711) with “SBCO Scholarship Endowment” on the memo line.

For more information, contact Ron Andrea at [email protected] or call him at 520-904-4831. Remember, a gift of education is a gift that lasts forever.

Kids Receive New Clothing Despite Disruptions in Schooling

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

Due to COVID restrictions, students from Catalina to Miami couldn’t come to Kids’ Closet in Mammoth to select their new spring wardrobes. Thanks to the hard work of Kids’ Closet volunteers, along with the cooperation of parents, teachers, and school administrators, the clothing was delivered to the kids!

Counselors provided teachers with the names of students who qualified, based on economic need, to receive clothing from Kids’ Closet. Requests for clothing and shoe sizes were sent to parents. The information received by the teachers was then submitted to Kids’ Closet volunteers. There of course were some challenges, with inaccuracies in student lists such as misspelled names, incorrect gender, or wrong grade level. Fortunately, most of these errors were spotted by volunteers and corrected before bags of clothing were sent to the schools.

Volunteers, wearing masks and maintaining social distance, selected the clothing and shoes for each child, scanned the barcodes of the items chosen (for inventory control), and packed each child’s wardrobe into large plastic bags labeled with the child’s name, grade, and school. Each child also was given two grade-appropriate books and toiletries. While the process was labor intensive, Kids’ Closet was able to provide 580 students with new wardrobes for the spring season. Although this is far less than the over 1,300 students normally served in the spring, at least these children had their clothing needs met.

Inventory at the Kids’ Closet was conducted on April 7, and hopes are high for returning to normal operations in the fall.