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Anniversary Issues Food Industry Hall of Fame West

Nonprofits Benefit From Bashas’ Generosity, Support

Mary Mitchell and Christina Spicer

Girl Scouts Arizona Cactus-Pine

Girl Scouts Arizona Cactus-Pine, a community partner with Bashas’ for more than 40 years, was quick to congratulate the company on its 90th anniversary.

Co-CEOs Mary Mitchell and Christina Spicer said the Girl Scout mission is to build young women of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place.

“Bashas’ has been an incredible community partner, especially during our cookie program,” they said. “For decades, Bashas’ has allowed our girls to practice their entrepreneurial and business skills by providing opportunities to booth in front of their stores. 

“With this permission, they have helped us to raise millions of dollars for Arizona girls and to support the causes they are passionate about and that make a real difference and impact in our communities.”

Mitchell and Spicer said Bashas’ long history in Arizona and its partnership with the Girl Scouts is “an inspiring example for our girls.” They added that Girl Scouting helps to foster entrepreneurialism, life skills and creates opportunities for girls to make the world a better place.  

“Bashas’ embodies the Arizona entrepreneurial spirit and story,” they said. “Thank you Bashas’ for your 90 years of love and care for the Arizona community.”

Steve Zabilski

St. Vincent de Paul

St. Vincent de Paul’s Arizona branch has been in operation since 1946. The charitable organization “feeds, clothes, houses and heals people in need, both those experiencing homelessness and the working poor throughout Arizona,” said CEO Steve Zabilski in an interview with The Shelby Report. 

“Bashas’ has supported St. Vincent de Paul for our entire 76-year history with financial resources, food and volunteers and by conducting numerous drives and events on our behalf. We just finished a summer water drive with Bashas’ during the month of June and our annual Turkey Tuesday event, coming up on its 30th anniversary in November, is the largest one-day turkey drive in the country,” Zabilski said. 

Zabilski had three anecdotes of the late Eddie Basha Jr., former chairman and CEO of Bashas’, all of which can be summarized with: “Our world needs more people like the Bashas.”

“I will never forget the time, almost 20 years ago, when Eddie Basha was driving home from the state capitol one afternoon. Eddie noticed a line of homeless men and women who had gathered outside our St. Vincent de Paul dining room,” Zabilski began. 

“He pulled over and called me from his vehicle and asked why so many people were in line and I shared with him the need was continuing to grow. Two days later, I received a personal check from Eddie with a note to use the funds to help the homeless and to let him know what else we needed. I am sure many thousands of people drove by our dining room that day, but Eddie Basha, one of the busiest people in our community, was the one who stopped, called and stepped in to help.” 

Zabilski continued, “Eddie and his family never said no to any request for assistance. In fact, just yesterday, St. Vincent de Paul received a donation from the foundation that Eddie and his wife, Nadine, started years ago. Along with their check was a lovely note that the funds were to help those in need. The Basha family is the role model for all people as to what it means to be servant leaders. Trey Basha continues that Legacy to this day along with the other members of the Basha family.

“I also remember on numerous occasions seeing Eddie volunteering in our St. Vincent de Paul kitchen, helping prepare meals, serving the homeless in our dining room, or on his knees praying in our chapel. Eddie never came down to serve with any fanfare, wishing instead to quietly help and to remain anonymous. Eddie once told me he loved the prayer of St. Francis that begins, ‘Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.’”

When asked about Bashas’ celebrating its 90th anniversary, Zabilski couldn’t be happier.

“The Bashas’ organization and family are some of the finest people in the world. Their genuine care and concern for others, especially those less fortunate or who fall on difficult times, is legendary. I don’t think the word, ‘no’ is in their vocabulary when it comes to a request to help another person. Our world needs more people like the Bashas.”

For more information, visit bashas.com.

To view the full anniversary section presented by The Shelby Report, click here.

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