Scottsdale celebrates local diversity champions this January

A family long-rooted in service to Scottsdale and a civil rights advocate have been named the 2015 Diversity Champions by the nonprofit group Community Celebrating Diversity.

The Silverman family – Ray and Lee and their children Tom, Richard and Carole, along with Frances Burruel, will be honored at Scottsdale’s 21st annual Martin Luther King Jr. Dinner Celebration, according to a press release.

The event takes place Wednesday, Jan. 14, at Chaparral Suites, 5001 N. Scottsdale Road, the release states.

The Silverman Family

The Silverman family members are community icons respected by people throughout Scottsdale for their loyalty to residents, visitors and local businesses.

Ray and Lee Silverman and their son, Tom.

Ray and Lee Silverman and their son, Tom.

As the recent owners and operators of the Chaparral Suites Resort, the Silverman family used their influence in the community to steadfastly support the many people, programs and diverse communities present here today.

Their individual and cumulative actions have embodied Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s spirit by embracing the “how can you serve” mantra. The family walks the talk by initiating and showing incredible support through their extensive volunteer activities and dedication to several local efforts.

Their list of community involvement is long and includes activities with these organizations: the city of Scottsdale, STARS-Scottsdale Training and Rehabilitation Service, Scottsdale Boys and Girls Club, Partners for Paiute, the Mayor’s Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities, Community Celebrating Diversity and the Scottsdale Unified School District.

Frances Burruel

Frances Ann Burruel has dedicated her life to addressing civil rights issues. The retired educator passionately works to ensure the underserved are provided an opportunity to improve their quality of life. She has had a positive impact on hundreds of Valley families for more than 25 years.

Frances Burruel

Frances Burruel

Frances has actively provided support to many community service groups including Conexiones, Sister Cities, Scottsdale Unified School District’s Blue Ribbon Campaign, Paiute Neighborhood Center and Old Adobe Mission Church — to name just a few.

Class of 2001 Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Buffalo Bills Head Coach Marv Levy headlines Scottsdale’s annual Martin Luther King Jr. Dinner Celebration Wednesday, Jan. 14.

A motivational speaker and coach who earned a master’s from Harvard University, Mr. Levy is best known for his intelligent and analytical football coaching.

The event begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Chaparral Suites, 5001 N. Scottsdale Road. Tickets are $60 per person and can be purchased online at or by calling 480-312-3030.

Community Celebrating Diversity, a Scottsdale-based 501(c)3, is sponsor of the event.

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