Arizona Elks Major Projects

In 1992, the Arizona Elks Major Projects began their incredible commitment to the work of the Steele Children’s Research Center. Raising between $200,000 and $300,000 each year, the Elks have made a significant difference in children’s health--raising more than $6.3 million for the Steele Children's Research Center.

In 2012, the Arizona Elks made a commitment to raise $2.5 million over the next 10 years. $1 million will support basic science research in autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease and celiac disease. In addition, funds will support translating this basic science through research studies at the Steele Children's Research Center in Phoenix. The remaining $1.5 million will establish the Arizona Elks Endowed Chair in Statewide Pediatric Research. The prestige of the endowed chair will enable the Steele Children's Research Center to recruit a top-notch clinical research leader to head the Steele Children's Research Center’s Phoenix enterprise.

Here are additional highlights of Elks-supported projects over the years:

Arizona Elks Endowed Chair in Statewide Pediatric Research/Arizona Elks Endowed Faculty Research for Technology and Innovation (2017)

Amount raised: $2.25 million
Arizona Elks Endowed Chair in Statewide Pediatric Research (Chairholder: Wayne Morgan, MD): This endowed chair creates a leadership position to help focus on the Steele Children's Research Center's role as a thought leader in children's health in Arizona. One of the ways this will be accomplished is by continuing to expand clinical research throughout the state, primarily in Maricopa County, due to its population.
Arizona Elks Endowed Faculty Research for Technology and Innovation (Chairholders: Fayez K. Ghishan, MD and Pawel Kiela, DVM, PhD): Having direct access to the newest equipment permits our researchers to conduct scientific experiments much more quickly. This endowed research fund provides perpetual funding to ensure that our researchers have an annual resource to support purchasing and maintaining innovative equipment for labs.

Steele Center Impact

Arizona Elks Endowed Chair in Neonatology Research

Amount raised: $2.5 million
In 2003, the Arizona Elks committed to creating the “Arizona Elks Endowed Chair in Neonatology Research.” An endowed chair generates income that lasts forever. Every year, a portion of the interest is available to the Chair to support research and provide seed funding to promising young investigators interested in neonatal research.

Arizona Elks Laboratories for Transplantation Research

Amount raised: $275,000
One of the first projects the Elks undertook was supporting the building of two research labs on the sixth floor of the Steele Center. These labs currently house researchers who specialize in
gastroenterology and nutrition.

Seed Research Awards

Amount raised: $1.2 million
Seed grants allow investigators to “prime the pump” with preliminary data, which will make their research projects more attractive to state and federal funding agencies.


Amount raised: $50,000
The education funds assisted with developing the first Pediatric Integrative Medicine Conference, and supported the “Morning for Children’s Health” workshops for parents.

Arizona Elks Clinic for Children and Young Adults (now called the Arizona Elks Pediatrics Clinic

Amount raised: $390,000
In 2001, the Arizona Elks celebrated the grand re-opening of the newly named “Arizona Elks Clinic for Children and Young Adults.” The renovated clinic now includes separate waiting areas for sick children and well children, and more efficient space for doctors, nurses and staff.

Core Support

Amount raised: $255,000
Core support funds are used to improve facilities and repair research equipment throughout the Steele Children's Research Center.

Marvin Lewis Pediatric Teaching Center

Amount raised: $130,000
Marvin Lewis, a past Grand Exalted Ruler, was passionate about education and helping children. Funds were used to renovate the pediatric residency offices and create a conference room. Upon completion, the space was named the “Marvin Lewis Pediatric Teaching Center.”

Toys, Blankets, Beanies and Booties

Amount raised: Priceless
There is simply no price that can be assigned to the hundreds of blankets, beanies and booties that have been knitted by the Elks for the premature babies at Banner University Medical Center. Or the thousands of donated toys and blankets that have brought a smile to a sick child’s face.
We are immensely grateful for these priceless gifts from the Arizona Elks lodges throughout Arizona. 

To learn more about the Arizona Elks, visit their website.