Last week, Governor Janet Napolitano signed an executive order establishing the Arizona Centennial Commission (AZCC). This Commission is charged with planning a year-long celebration of Arizona’s 100th birthday, culminating on Feb. 14, 2012. Although Arizona’s centennial is still four years away, preparations are underway to ensure communities across the Grand Canyon State can enjoy and participate in Centennial celebrations.
AZCC will develop a master plan that contains five major components: generating awareness and engagement by providing a sense of unity and pride among residents; developing participation programs, which include a robust calendar of activities to celebrate the year-long Centennial; implementing educational programs that focus on the state’s past, present and future; collaborating with the Arizona Historical Advisory Commission on legacy projects, such as working with communities to highlight their unique historical value; and establishing avenues for resources and funding to encourage and support planning at the state and local level for major projects.
The Arizona Office of Tourism will play a major role in supporting the Commission with implementing many of the programs to be held throughout the state. To assist the Commission in achieving these goals, AOT Assistant Deputy Director Karen Churchard has been assigned to spearhead the strategic planning and development for the Centennial celebrations. Karen’s experience and knowledge as a marketing and special events professional, which includes 22 years with the Fiesta Bowl organization as well as bringing Super Bowl XLII to Arizona, will benefit the effort.