The dramatic growth and success of the Southern Arizona Leadership Council (SALC) led to a board decision to expand its staff and put in place a new leadership structure intended to continue the group’s upward trajectory.

“The growth and impact of SALC over the last few years has been remarkable,” said SALC Board Chairman Greg White, who is ‎Vice President and CFO at Raytheon Missile Systems. The board of directors’ recommendation noted “the significant increase in membership is a reflection of the group’s success on strategic issues that will improve the economic environment and quality of life in southern Arizona. The 140-plus members of SALC are excited about the future of the group and the opportunity to help our region reach its full potential. We’re entering 2017 with an outstanding staff aligned to have even greater impact on the direction of our community and our state.”

White announced the promotion of Edward P. (Ted) Maxwell to SALC president, succeeding Ron Shoopman, and expressed appreciation that Shoopman will remain as the organization’s CEO. Shelley Watson, a new member of the SALC team, will replace Maxwell as vice president of SALC effective February 1.

Maxwell, who has been vice president of SALC since April 2013 has had a distinguished military career covering more than 30 years of service. He is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy and his service includes 15 years of active duty and 17 years in the National Guard. After serving as the Vice Wing Commander at the 162nd Wing located at the Tucson International Airport, he assumed the role, and is currently serving, as the Commander of the Arizona Air National Guard. He was promoted to Major General in December 2015. Ted received his master’s of business administration from the University of Arizona in 2014.

Shoopman has been at the help of SALC since January 2005, and has served as president and CEO.. Under his leadership, the group has doubled in size and has compiled an impressive list of accomplishments. His extensive military and business experience has served him well in his role at SALC. A retired US Air Force Brigadier General and former wing commander of the 162nd Fighter Wing, Shoopman currently serves on the Arizona Board of Regents and remains involved in other community and state efforts including his leadership of the state’s Bioscience Roadmap Steering Committee.

Watson, who grew up in Tucson, brings a wealth of experience working in fundraising and non-profit management with business and community leaders. She comes to SALC from Capital Quest, Inc., a fundraising consulting firm, where she served as chief operating officer and partner. In that role she led capital campaigns that raised more than $750 million for nonprofits. Previously in Tucson, she was executive director of the American Heart Association. Watson also served on several non-profit boards, including Ronald McDonald House, where she was board president. A graduate of Canyon del Oro High School, she holds a bachelor’s of science in business administration from Arizona State University.

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