Arizona Teachers Receive $1 Million in Grants from Fiesta Bowl Charities Wishes for Teachers, Powered by DriveTime - Fiesta Bowl | Fiesta Bowl

Arizona Teachers Receive $1 Million in Grants from Fiesta Bowl Charities Wishes for Teachers, Powered by DriveTime

Oct 25, 2018

First-ever Draft Day awards $5,000 grants to 200 K-12 teachers, with local celebrities, community champions, Fiesta Bowl family informing teachers

SCOTTSDALE, AZ – As part of its mission to benefit Arizonans through youth, sports and education, the Fiesta Bowl organization and its Fiesta Bowl Charities Wishes for Teachers program, powered by DriveTime has donated $1 million to 200 Arizona teachers. This is believed to be the largest donation to Arizona teachers.

The full list of teachers who received a Wishes for Teachers grant may be found here. At $5,000 each for 200 teachers across the state, 48,438 students, 182 schools, 85 School Districts and 38 cities will be positively impacted.

For the first time since Wishes for Teachers began in 2016, the Fiesta Bowl organization created a Draft Day, a combination of a draft day and telethon that brought together local celebrities, community champions and the Fiesta Bowl Family to randomly select and then call teachers to inform them of their award. Participants in Draft Day included Archie Bradley, Jerry Colangelo, Harvey Mackay, Miss Arizona, DriveTime CEO Don Reese, Isaiah Acosta and the 2019 Arizona Teacher of the Year.

“What a day! Fiesta Bowl Charities Wishes for Teachers, powered by DriveTime, has become the model program to support teachers throughout the state of Arizona,” said Steve Leach, chairman of the Fiesta Bowl Board of Directors. “Our lives are better because of the hard work that teachers do in the classroom every day and the Fiesta Bowl is committed to supporting education as a foundation for success in life.”

Each fall, Arizona K-12 public or charter school teachers are invited to fill out an online application detailing their school or classroom need and, after meeting the criteria, wishes are selected by random drawing for teachers to receive a $5,000 grant.

Each of the unique 200 teacher wishes will benefit teachers and schools in technology, reading, music, fitness and more. During the first two years of the program, Fiesta Bowl Wishes for Teachers granted $1.2 million to Arizona teachers, impacting over 60,000 children across the state.

“This is a momentous day to be able to give $1 million to Arizona’s teachers, people who give selflessly to enhance the lives of others. With the help of DriveTime, this new level of funding will allow teachers and students to enjoy resources they have only wished to have in the past,” said Mike Nealy, Fiesta Bowl Executive Director. “Wishes for Teachers supports, honors and celebrates Arizona’s teachers for their commitment to our children.”

In addition to the financial grant, selected teachers will be recognized in the Fiesta Bowl Parade on Saturday, December 29, and on-field at the 30th Annual Cheez-It® Bowl at Chase Field on Tuesday, December 26.


The Fiesta Bowl is a world-class community organization that executes innovative experiences, drives economic growth and champions charitable causes, inspiring pride in all Arizonans. As a nonprofit organization, it believes in the importance of community outreach and service. Through charitable giving, the organization strives to enhance Arizona nonprofit organizations that contribute to the success of communities through youth, sports and education. Since 1971, the Fiesta Bowl has worked to increase its footprint across the state and work to benefit Arizonans year round, during and outside of bowl season.