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Name: Tony Banegas

Position: Program Officer, Arizona Community Foundation and Honorary Consul of Honduras in Arizona

Job description: Responsible for grant-making and being a link between the foundation and the non-profit community across the state. Responsible for two major initiatives; Hispanics in Philanthropy, which provides support to Latino-led non-profits in capacity-building; and the Families Economic Success (FES) initiative, which provides support to working families so they can benefit from the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) and asset development in general.

Time on the job: 3 years

Education: Masters in Public Administration from Arizona State University; Bachelor’s of Business in Administration from ASU.

Résumé highlight: Prior to joining the foundation, spent 20 years in management positions overseeing a variety of projects dealing with child development, health, behavioral health, prevention, adult education, child welfare, community development and  employment and training.

Currently serving his second term as president of the Board of Directors of Neighborhood Housing Services of Southwestern Maricopa County, a Neighbor Works affiliate located in Avondale. Has coordinated multiple projects in the areas of health, housing and education in Honduras worth more than $500,000 over the past 10 years. He has coached girls’ soccer for 12 years and still plays soccer every Sunday. Sunday school teacher for 10 years at his church, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Phoenix.  In 2006, the President of Honduras appointed Banegas as Honorary Consul of Honduras in the state of Arizona with jurisdiction over Colorado, Utah and Nebraska.

Life lessons learned on the job: “Do your best; always keep your customer in mind.”

Proudest career/job-related accomplishment: “Establishment of Nuestra Familia, a family support program for children and families in the West Valley.”

Best career advice you have received: “Take care of your people and take care of yourself.”

Most important skills to possess in your field: “Interpersonal and listening skills.

Mentors: Virgilio Lopez, OFM (Former Bishop of Honduras).

Most important concept you learned in school: “Total quality management (TQM): Do things right the first time; always strive to provide the highest level of quality.”

Person you admire the most in your field: “Kent Keith,” author of “Paradoxical “ and CEO of the Greenleaf Center, an international non-profit organization based in Indiana that promotes the understanding and practice of servant leadership.

If you had to recareer: “A Buddhist monk.”

Memorable learning moment: “I was trying to impress my fifth-grade daughter by showing her all the keys I had when I was appointed director of a prominent center; she took a look at the keys and said, “My school janitor has a lot more than that.”

What you like the most about your career: “Being able to link nonprofit executives with our resources.”

Final thought: “Hasta la victoria siempre …”

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