Feeding Matters’ network of community advisors are respected philanthropists and businesspeople who provide guidance, support, and advice to grow the organization through introductions to various foundations, corporate contacts, and new donor prospects.

Community Advisors


The Dorrance Family Foundation

A respected philanthropist, Jacquie Dorrance has long served as a Feeding Matters community advisor. Her legacy of community involvement includes the Phoenix Country Day School, Junior League, board of the Ronald McDonald House, COMPAS (Combined Metropolitan Phoenix Arts and Sciences), Friends of Hospice, Desert Foundation Auxiliary, Heart Ball, the Arizona Science Center’s board of trustees, and co-chair of Arizona Kidney Foundation’s 19th Author’s luncheon.


Currently, Jacquie is directly involved with Arizona State University as honorary chair of the President’s Club, as well as Barrow Women’s board, Ballet Arizona, Steele Memorial Children’s Research Center (PANDA), Translational Genomics’ (TGen) Center for Rare Childhood Diseases (C4RCD), The Nature Conservancy, and several arts and culture organizations including the Phoenix Art Museum and Desert Botanical Garden. Additionally, Jacquie is very active in the Dorrance Family Foundation which supports education and natural resource conservation.



With Feeding Matter’s from the beginning, Dianne is the grandmother of the Goldwater triplets, born at 26 weeks. Prior to her work with Feeding Matters, Dianne was active with the Junior League of Phoenix, Foundation for Blind Children’s board, ASU College of Education dean’s associates board, The Board of Visitors, and National Charity League. Dianne and her husband Bob have four children and have celebrated 50+ years of marriage.


The Dorrance Family Foundation

Owner and President of Bellisima Ranch (Cave Creek, Arizona), a state-of-the art, full service horse boarding and training facility, Ashley currently serves on the board of The Dorrance Family Foundation and the Dorrance Family Legacy Trust. She is active and personally involved with Steele Children’s Research Center and T-Gen, with a special commitment to rare pediatric genetic disorders, animal welfare organizations, and other children’s medical causes. Her work and philanthropic focus recently expanded to include California and Hawaii.


The DeMatteis Family Foundation

A native of Long Island, New York, Linda was a long-time member of the Junior League of Long Island, including a stint as President from 1989 to 1990. Her community involvement also includes tenures on the boards of the Family Service Association and The Center for Parents and Children. As Literacy Luncheon Chairperson for The Center for Parents and Children, Linda had the distinct pleasure of hosting former first lady Barbara Bush as the event’s guest speaker. Following her relocation to Arizona, Linda’s philanthropic efforts have shifted west, supporting the Board of Visitors Care Card program and working with the boards of Ryan House and Citizenship Counts.

Fred Pakis

The Pakis Family Foundation

Since co-founding JDA Software, Inc. (Nasdaq: JDAS) in 1985, Fred has served as president, co-CEO and co-chairman of the board for various periods of time through 2000. JDA Software was Arizona’s largest software company with over 1,200 employees and revenues in excess of $200 million (50% of which originated from outside the US). The company is headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona and has 31 offices in major cities around the world.

Fred is a Trustee of the Phoenix Children’s Hospital, the Arizona Opera, Phoenix Country Day School, the state’s Nature Conservancy and sits on the North American Advisory Board of the London Business School. He is a member of the Board of Overseers of the Fletcher School and currently serves as Chairman of the Pakis Family Foundation.



Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center (SARRC), First Place AZ

Founder and CEO of DRA Collective, formerly DRA Strategic Communications, Denise has used her experience as the mother of an adult son on the autism spectrum to positively impact the lives of others. She is also the founder, president and CEO of First Place AZ, a nonprofit dedicated to developing new, innovative housing options for adults with autism and other special abilities. Additionally, Denise is co-founder and board member emeritus of the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center (SARRC), an internationally recognized nonprofit organization committed to autism research, education and community outreach and the lifelong support of individuals on the autism spectrum and their families.

Other nonprofit leadership includes serving as a member of the Autism Speaks Family Housing Committee, Advancing Futures for Adults with Autism (AFAA) Leadership Council, National Association of Residential Providers for Adults with Autism (NARPAA) and the National Autism Transition Research Network Advisory Panel. Denise also served as a federally appointed member of the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) of the National Institutes of Health. She is also a member of the Arizona Community Foundation board of directors and BBVA Compass advisory board.



An active figure in Phoenix philanthropy for more than 35 years, Judy co-founded the Phoenix Ronald McDonald House with her good friend Suzanne Hanson. She and two friends, Susan Palmer-Hunter and Susie Chester, brought CARE CARD to Phoenix and The Board of Visitors which started in 2000. Judy helped develop Citizenship Counts, an Arizona non-profit, with her dear friend Gerda Weissmann Klein and spent three years as chairman of the board. She is a member of the Barrow Women’s board, The Board of Visitors, the founding board of Ryan House, and the Junior League of Phoenix.


Board of Visitors

Judy’s diverse background includes more than 40 years of experience in fundraising, strategic planning, administration, public speaking, management training and volunteerism. With excellent business and community contacts in the Greater Phoenix Metropolitan area, Judy is a proven director and coordinator for fundraising activities and special events involving paid personnel and volunteers.

A former director of development and community affairs at the Heard Museum, Judy has served on numerous nonprofit boards that focus on education, the arts, and health care. A current affiliate member of the Board of Visitors, Judy’ board experience includes COMPAS (Combined Metropolitan Phoenix Arts and Sciences), Arizona Children’s Trust Fund, Arizona Community Foundation, the Arizona Kidney Foundation Women’s Board, and many other organizations.



Southwest Human Development

Since founding Southwest Human Development in 1981 with just six employees serving 175 families, CEO Ginger Ward has grown the community-based organization to the largest of its kind in Arizona, with 900 employees serving 135,000 young children and families each year. Ginger has made a significant contribution to the early childhood field in Arizona by ensuring that the latest best practices and research are used to create programs and to educate parents, professionals, and policy makers about the importance of children’s earliest years to later development.


Ginger serves on a variety of boards and committees charged with forming policy on, and improving services for, children and families, including the Alliance for Early Learning Success; American Academy of Pediatrics, Arizona Chapter board of directors; Arizona Early Childhood Alliance; child care advisory committee – State of Arizona; Educare Arizona board of directors; Educare national leadership council; Healthy Families steering committee; Maricopa County Family Support Alliance; and the ZERO TO THREE national board of directors.