Make-A-Wish Arizona is the founding chapter of what is now an international wish granting organization. The organization started in 1980 and has helped grant more than 5,500 wishes starting with the legacy of Chris Greicius, a seven year old boy from Phoenix. His wish to be a police officer inspired an unprecedented kind of charity. Since then, Make-A-Wish has evolved into a community of volunteers, donors and Arizona families. One proud volunteer is JLL’s Senior Associate Mari Lederman.
Mari co-chaired this year’s Wish Ball hosted on March 23, with Jill Riley. The Wish Ball is Make-A-Wish’s annual fundraising event. M first became involved with Make-A-Wish in 2014, through this event. Her friends, Renee Parsons and Jennifer Moser, were past chairs and invited her to become a part of it. Since then, Mari has been involved as a committee member and was a co-chair in 2016. She has agreed to co-chair the Wish Ball one more time in 2020 for their 40th anniversary.
In addition to being involved with the Wish Ball, Mari is also an official “Wish Grantor” and has coordinated a young girl’s wish to become a fashion designer.
“I am passionate about Make-A-Wish because I believe in the power of a wish,” Mari said. “Wishes fall into four categories: I wish to go, I wish to be, I wish to have, and I wish to meet. I love how a wish is only limited by a child’s imagination.”
The wish experience extends to the entire, immediate family living in the home, knowing that parents and siblings want to share in the magic, too. A wish gives the child and their family special lifetime memories. Scientific research has proven that a child’s wish can help with the cure (the mind is extremely powerful).
The 2018 sold out Wish Ball raised approximately $3 million in a single night. This money will help grant 300 future wishes to local children facing critical illnesses. The theme of the ball was A Wish Come True, and the event was attended by 1,000 guests including others from the JLL family. JLL’s Managing Director Dennis Desmond and Senior Vice Presidents Tivon Moffitt and Peter Bauman purchased a table for the event.
“The Wish Ball was well planned, beautifully executed and lots of fun to attend,” said Dennis. “More importantly, deserving children and their families who are struggling with significant challenges, will greatly benefit from all the money raised. All-in-all, it was a very inspirational evening.”
The Wish Ball included a wish kid moment, silent and live auctions and live music. Click here to learn more about Make-A-Wish and how you can help.