SANFP E22: Patti Lopez & Caroline Isaacs, Directors of 2 great Non-Profit Organizations

With Barbara in this episode are two ladies from two different non profits doing different things. One recently participated in a competition called “Fast Pitch” which we will hear all about, the other provides a wonderful service to children in need that helps them feel secure!

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With Barbara in this episode are two ladies from two different non profits doing different things. One recently participated in a competition called “Fast Pitch” which we will hear all about, the other provides a wonderful service to children in need that helps them feel secure!

ABOUT ~ Dr. Patti Lopez 

Hi my name is Patti Lopez and I have had the wonderful opportunity to serve the children and community of Tucson as an educator for many years.       

I have transitioned into a new role of serving children as I currently work as the Executive Director for Angel Heart Pajama Project.   

Angel Heart is a nonprofit organization with a Mission of providing new pajamas, books, and cuddle pillows to children in need.  The children we serve are living in distressed situations.  They are in shelters, foster care or adoption processes, abused, neglected, possibly abandoned or seriously ill.  Many children arrive at a new facility with only the clothing that they are wearing.   

The new pajamas give them a sense of being gifted something special, warm, and cozy.  In a time of distress they can get lost in a story or book and escape, if only temporarily from a difficult situation.  The cuddle pillow provides them with something small and soft to hold tight and give them a sense of security when no one else may be holding or cuddling them. 

My passion and hope is that all children who receive the Angel Heart gift will feel, loved and cared for.   Please join me on this journey of supporting children in need.       

ABOUT ~ Caroline Isaacs 

Executive Director/ Just Communities Arizona 

Caroline has two decades of experience advocating for just and effective criminal justice policy in Arizona and is a leading voice in the movement to end mass incarceration.  Originally from Northeast Pennsylvania, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the College of Wooster and a Masters in Social Work from Arizona State University. 

JCA was formerly the Arizona office of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), an international social justice organization grounded in the Quaker faith. The program was heavily engaged in sentencing reform policy advocacy at the state level and was successful in establishing a statewide dialogue around excessive sentencing laws, prison privatization, prison conditions, and the negative impacts of the criminal punishment system on individuals and communities.  
The program has centered its work in the experience and leadership of people directly impacted by arrest and incarceration. Its original research has been featured in The New York Times,, Dan Rather Reports, In These Times, The Hill, The Nation, Al Jazeera America, The Huffington Post, and numerous state and local media outlets. 

JCA’s mission is to create, foster, and resource new models for safety and justice outside the punishment system. We work with people impacted by the punishment system to promote a holistic view of safety that encompasses physical, emotional, and economic health and wellness; cultivate the next generation of community leaders; and build community-based solutions. JCA just concluded a community survey to learn about the perceptions of safety of Tucson residents, especially those in under resourced and overpoliced neighborhoods.  Understanding that safety can mean more than just perceptions of crime, the survey focused on what residents believe would improve their safety and well-being. In particular, it focused on factors outside the criminal legal system, such as how meeting needs related to housing, environment, and employment can help people feel safer. These insights can broaden Tucson policymakers’ understanding of safety beyond a simplistic absence of reported crime and suggest more holistic investments to benefit the city’s communities of color.  JCA convenes a statewide Network of community based holistic safety organizations, bringing them together to collaborate, in 





COMPANY PHONE:  (520) 623-9141        

About the Host:

Barbara McClure, Executive Director  
IMPACT of Southern Arizona 
3535 E Hawser Street 
TucsonAZ  85739                                                    
Phone: 520-825-0009

SOCIAL MEDIA: Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn | Twitter |

Barbara McClure wakes up each morning passionate about going to work at a place that improves lives and inspires futures every day! She has been the Executive Director of a Tucson social service nonprofit called IMPACT of Southern Arizona, for ten years. What is it that keeps you passionate about your role Barbara?

Barbara has been a visionary and planner with decades of experience as a small business owner and in nonprofit leadership; her innovative ideas and strategic thinking, along with a talent for bringing the community together, has helped grow IMPACT five-fold in a very short time. Her talents and interests are diverse but all center around helping people, improving the community, bolstering education, building capacity and sustainability, being vocal about the rights and conditions of others, experiencing art, nurturing all inhabitants of your garden, and enjoying life to the fullest. 

And now Barbara is about to experience another exciting chapter in her life with hosting a brand-new Radio Show Podcast here on the Tucson Business RadioX Network starting in November. 

IMPACT of Southern Arizona is a 20 – year old social service nonprofit stabilizing families and seniors, and moving people out of poverty. IMPACT’s programs are designed to stretch household budgets so earned income can be spent on necessities such as improved housing conditions, fuel to get to work, utilizes, and needed medical attention and prescriptions.  Its clients are your neighbors! People come to IMPACT because it is a welcoming place where they are always treated with dignity and respect, and where they find resources, referrals, coaching, and help to attain the skills that can move them forward into self-sufficiency. 

Barbara grew up in Pasadena CA, moved to Long Beach for college, got married and started our family then moved to Seattle area ten years later. Took our youngest son on an 11-month motorhome trip to get to Tucson – Homeschooled for 10th grade. 

We vacationed at a rustic cabin when I was growing up, where we had no phone or television; and spent all our time outside fishing, hiking, horseback riding, listening to old radio shows, playing pool, reading comic books from the local small grocer, and using our imaginations all day long. I always admired the superheroes who defended people and cities like Gotham and Metropolis, so when our three boys were born, we named them after familiar character: Colin (Bryce for an overlay of Bruce Wayne, Kent, and Parker. Our first grandchild was born last year, and as in the family tradition, named Logan, after the Wolverine. I used to always tell them they were my superheroes – and they still are today! 

Barbara loves working with numbers and has always loved math and the organization of things, so accounting seemed perfect, but I soon realized that I if I became a CPA I would have to spend many months inside doing tax returns, and that did not appeal to me as a long–term career! I have a great imagination and enjoy creating things, so thought I should find a better path that might nurture that side of my personality. I was working in the shipping industry in SoCal at the time and fell in love with import and export, so shifted my majors to Marketing and International Business. Those were wonderful fits, and I imagined graduating and moving to the largest port on the planet, in Germany; then, I met my future husband and things took a different turn. 

A little bit about how Barbara got into Nonprofit work: 

All along with my husband and I were always involved in nonprofits and community volunteer opportunities, and often said it was too bad we could not make a living doing those things we loved so much. Leadership roles in PTO, Boy Scouts, Historical Societies, Junior League, Elks, Rotary and more. Then when we moved to Tucson I looked for a local opportunity to impact my community. A Board position was about to open at IMPACT, and my local bank branch manager, Peggy Smoot, suggested I would be very passionate about getting involved in the mission work there. I worked in the Food Bank. 

There are thousands of nonprofits in Tucson. What makes IMPACT Unique is that they bring the community together to stabilize families and move people out of poverty. Our true success lies in partnering with a large number of businesses, agencies, social clubs and other nonprofits. We invest $2.5 million in the community each year, and we do it all with a lean staff of amazing professionals supported by more than 170 volunteer shifts each week! We have put great systems in place to run efficiently, effectively and with a commitment to sustainability and integrity, protecting the community’s investment in our work, striving for perfect audits, being innovative, building capacity and most importantly – treating everyone with dignity and respect. We are an award-winning nonprofit with numerous nods to incredible customer service. Our clients are your neighbors… We improve lives and inspire futures of people living in Southern AZ.  

So, IMPACT is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, and you have been at the helm half that time. Share with me the things IMPACT has accomplished over the years, and the things you have planned for this celebratory year.