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Piper Trust Makes Award for Catholic Elementary Schools

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$8 million commitment for 25 schools to meet critical health and safety issues

SCOTTSDALE, AZ (March 10, 2008)—The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust today awarded $8 million to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix to make needed elementary school building improvements to address important health and safety issues. The capital grant follows a needs assessment of the 25 Catholic elementary schools in Maricopa County, conducted by an independent firm, Architectural Resource Team, Inc.

“This significant commitment was very deliberative, with research and planning identifying the most critical health and safety needs at these elementary schools,” said Judy Jolley Mohraz, Ph.D., Piper Trust president and CEO. “Because Virginia Piper was deeply committed to Catholic education in her lifetime, we are pleased to honor her by continuing to make strategic investments to support Catholic schools and opportunities for strong academic and spiritual education.”

Following the independent facility assessment, the Diocese created a list of priority needs for each elementary school. The Piper Board of Trustees decided to fund all priorities in the “critical” category. These items generally cover basic structural and equipment requirements at the school buildings, such as installing proper lighting, safety equipment and heating and cooling systems, and repairing leaking roofs, faulty electrical wiring and outdated plumbing.

“I am grateful for the generosity of The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust and the support it expresses for the children who attend Catholic elementary schools in the Diocese of Phoenix,” said the Most Reverend Thomas J. Olmsted, Bishop of the Diocese of Phoenix. “This grant honors the special concern she [Mrs. Piper] had for the educational needs of our children.”
The Trust previously initiated strategic investments for Catholic high schools and preschools in Maricopa County.

About The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust:
A private foundation, The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust is dedicated to honoring Virginia Galvin Piper’s philanthropic commitment to changing lives and strengthening community in Maricopa County (Arizona). By investing in nonprofits and encouraging strategic planning for the future, Piper Trust strives to make Maricopa County a stronger, more nurturing and vibrant community.

Since it began awarding grants in 1999, Piper Trust has awarded nearly $229 million to local nonprofits. The Trust reported total grants paid of $25.6 million in fiscal year 2007 (ending March 31, 2007). Piper Trust focuses on healthcare and medical research, children, older adults, arts and culture, education and religious organizations.

About the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix:
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix was established on December 2, 1969, by Pope Paul VI. The Diocese, which is comprised of 43,967 square miles, includes the counties of Maricopa, Mohave, Yavapai and Coconino (excluding the territorial boundaries of the Navajo Indian Reservation), and also includes the Gila River Indian Reservation in Pinal County. With a registered Catholic population of over 550,000 people, the Diocese encompasses 92 parishes and 24 missions. Twenty-six pre-schools, 29 elementary schools and six high schools in the Diocese serve 15,300 students.