Our mission is to connect passionate people with transformative community projects to fight poverty.
Our vision is that communities and the individuals who serve them thrive when every person contributes to a sustainable and just existence.
Our values are simple. We SERVE.
We support community driven initiatives.
We empower our members through professional growth.
We cultivate relationships with partners, members, and staff.
We affirm diverse voices and experiences.
We exemplify a positive working environment.
We are an institution built on the richness of its diversity. We value inclusivity, do not tolerate discrimination, and proactively work to create a safe place for all.
Our story began in 2006 when several Yavapai County agencies saw a gap in services, so they brought together a small team of AmeriCorps VISTA members to fight poverty in the region. Several members chose to stay after their service year to develop the Yavapai County VISTA Project. In 2009, we became Serve Yavapai and a program of Prescott College, increasing in scope and size to 25 VISTA members.
During 2013, we expanded to Pima County as well, thus becoming Arizona Serve. We were awarded our first AmeriCorps State and National grant in 2015, which broadened the part- and full-time direct service opportunities available for projects targeting healthy futures, education, and economic opportunities. Additionally, in 2015, Arizona Serve established a partnership with the Tucson Mayor's office in order to implement the Tucson Community Schools Initiative. This initiative sunsetted in 2020 as it placed members in three school districts and improved high school graduation rates and connected students to college and career opportunities.
Today, we are a team over 150 strong. We are proud to have one of the largest and top-performing AmeriCorps projects in the state of Arizona. Our staff, all of whom were National Service members themselves, oversees a collaborative team environment that allows us to support communities in the fight against poverty.
Consider making a financial contribution to support our AmeriCorps members and general programming.
Celia Robidoux, Executive Director
Values based leadership is at the core of who Celia Robidoux is. Service means a lot to Celia, and she sees it as a great responsibility she carries in her work towards a better community for all. Celia brings her expertise in nonprofit management and human development to her current role as the Executive Director of Arizona Serve of Prescott College. She began her career in the public sector in 2006 by serving and working with Public Allies Arizona, an AmeriCorps program of the ASU Lodestar Center. She is a lifelong learner and has a Bachelor’s of Science in Justice Studies with a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Studies Certification from Arizona State University. a Certified Professional Integrative Coach, and is a graduate of the American Express Leadership Academy. Celia's service in Tucson involves community-based campaigns and coalitions such Pima County’s first Safety + Justice Community Collaborative, an effort to safely reduce the local jail population, as the chair on Racial, Ethnic, Disparities and Disproportionality committee, and serves on the board of directors for YWCA of Southern Arizona. When not being a facilitator of justice, Celia enjoys spending time with her family and friends; cooking; exploring the landscape and culture of Tucson; and binge watching her favorite shows like Gilmore Girls.
Annie Reifsnyder, Director of Training and Member Experience
Annie shifted in to a director role in 2020 and is a Ph.D. candidate in Sustainability Education at Prescott College. She received a Bachelor’s degree at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana and majored in Religious Studies with a focus in Islam. A semester abroad in Kenya with the School of International Training propelled her to join the Peace Corps. She served in Benin, West Africa, where she spent one term teaching English and another serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer Leader. After her time abroad, Annie returned stateside and received a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Annie worked in various capacities for the Boys Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee for nearly ten years before turning once again to service, this time AmeriCorps. Annie joined Arizona Serve in 2017 first as an AmeriCorps VISTA Leader and then the Training and Program Manager for the Prescott team. Annie loves to travel far and wide and has recently developed perhaps an unhealthy obsession with the National Parks.
Ann Drazkowski, Operations and State Program Manager
Ann moved to Tucson from Wisconsin in 2015 to serve as an AmeriCorps VISTA with Arizona Serve and stayed on an additional year as a VISTA team leader. She served in both roles with the Community Schools Initiative, and then supported Arizona Serve as a Recruitment Specialist. Ann holds a Master's of Public Affairs from the University of Wisconsin – Madison where she developed skills in program evaluation and non-profit management. She is passionate about recruiting talented individuals to serve in AmeriCorps State and VISTA roles and to develop communication strategies that will share the valuable impact Arizona Serve's AmeriCorps members provide to the community.
Sarah Haber, Communication and Program Manager
Sarah got her start in National Service in the summer of 2017 when she moved from New York to Arizona to serve as a VISTA for 2 years. Her first VISTA term was for the Chino Valley Area Chamber of Commerce serving as the Community Volunteer Program Coordinator. There, she developed an online database to help to local nonprofits connect with people looking to volunteer. She then extended her service for another year and took on the position of the AmeriCorps VISTA Team Leader for Prescott. Sarah was then hired on full time by Arizona Serve and relocated from Prescott to Tucson. She is excited to continue her work with the organization as the Communication & Program Manager!
Number: (928) 793-8941
Elaine MacPherson, Training and Youth Program Manager
Elaine MacPherson was born in Pasadena, California and grew up in a small town in the high desert called Acton. Because her parents never took her to the beach as a kid, she decided to attend the University of California at Santa Barbara, where she studied Sociology and History, focusing on poverty policy. Elaine joined AmeriCorps VISTA in 2016, working with Compass Affordable Housing as a program developer and community gardener. After her year of service, she built on her skills in community collaboration to run a homeless prevention program and helped launch the coordinated entry system for homeless prevention services county-wide. She now serves as the Training and Youth Program Manager, where she will implement training curriculum and manage two youth cohorts of service-members. When she is not with Arizona Serve, Elaine can be found cuddling with her dog Niles, watching ALL OF the television on every streaming service, or gardening.
Phone: (520) 369-3178
Andris Rapa, AmeriCorps VISTA and Administrative Program Manager
Ensuring equal access to opportunity for all and protecting the environment for generations to enjoy are what grounds Andris Rapa and has helped guide him in his career. Andris has previously served as an AmeriCorps VISTA with Arizona Serve at Higher Ground and managed a VISTA Grant for two years prior to joining Arizona Serve as the AmeriCorps VISTA and Administrative Manager. In his free time, Andris has been known to travel and sample the local food. Pupusas are his favorite.
Mona Stephens, AmeriCorps Program Coordinator
Servant leadership and personal development are at Mona Stephens core. The ability to grow and act as a catalyst for change drives every aspect of Mona’s life – especially professionally. Mona brings her expertise in leadership, event planning, and digital marketing to her current role as AmeriCorps Program Coordinator with Arizona Serve of Prescott College. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communication with an emphasis on social media from West Chester University of Pennsylvania. Shortly upon graduation, she relocated to Arizona to join AmeriCorps and has been obsessed with making an impact for the organizations she works with and the community at large. This obsession led her to spend nearly the last two years leading a nonprofit at the director level before transitioning into her current role. Mona spends her free time camping, hiking, blogging, and coaching individuals in the art of confidence so they can make the impact they desire in their lives and communities.
Sue Kim, Tucson VISTA Team Leader
Sue moved to Tucson, Arizona in 2019 from New Jersey to serve as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona and El Rio Community Health Center as the Diabetes Care Coordinator. In 2017, she graduated from Montclair State University (NJ) with a BS in Nutrition and Food Science and a minor in Public Health. She fell in love with the southwest culture and the desert landscape as well as the unique Tucson community and decided to stay to continue serving with Arizona Serve as Tucson’s VISTA Team Leader. She is also currently a graduate student with the University of Arizona pursuing a Masters in Public Health. In her spare time, she loves making fun videos and trying out new recipes. In the evenings, she can be found in one of Tucson’s many mountains enjoying the colorful desert sunsets.
Zach Simmons, Tucson State Team Leader
Zach is new to both Tucson and Arizona Serve, he moved to Tucson from Seattle to serve as the AmeriCorps State Team Leader. Prior to moving to Tucson, Zach was an AmeriCorps volunteer from 2017-2018 in New Orleans where he served as a geometry teacher at George Washington Carver High School with City Year. After falling in love with national service during his year in New Orleans, Zach joined the Peace Corps where he volunteered as an English teacher in Timor-Leste from 2018-2020. Zach has a bachelor’s degree in Political Science, Philosophy, and Economics with a minor in Education and Social Justice. He is passionate about hiking, human rights, being outdoors, Sailing, Cooking, and Education. Zach is excited to join the Arizona Serve team and to integrate into the Tucson community.
Madison Link, Prescott State Team Leader
Madison graduated from Georgia College & State University in 2019 with a BS in Psychology and minor in Mathematics. After graduation, she joined Arizona Serve in Prescott as an AmeriCorps VISTA, working with GEM Environmental as their Program Coordinator. Madison created multiple programs for all ages of students, focusing on bringing unique science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) events into the classroom. She is excited to continue working with Arizona Serve as the Prescott State Team Leader and focus on supporting others during their service term in addition to continuing to make a positive impact throughout the Yavapai community. When she is not getting things done for Arizona Serve, you can find her rock climbing at the Dells, beating Sean at four square or reading a good book with a cup of hot chocolate.
Sean Stevens, Prescott VISTA Team Leader
During the day, Sean enjoys solving problems and supporting efforts that tangibly improve the lives and experiences of his fellow man. He views it as a privilege, rather than a responsability, to work to meaningfully better the world. He brings to the table his years of coaching and mentoring experience as well as his prior work with the Prescott Unified School District's volunteer teams. Though he got his start in AmeriCorps shortly after graduating from Case Western Reserve University in 2019 with a bachelor's degree in history, he found the experience fulfilling enough to sign up for another year of punishment in the hope of helping others find their own meaningful experiences. After work hours, Sean is a quintessential dork and a loveable rapscallion. When he's not busy roughing it as a rogue, he enjoys listening to Jukebox the Ghost, watching Community, reading Redwall, and getting trounced by skilled fencers.
Number: (520) 276-1802