Catholic Education Arizona received two prestigious awards from the Phoenix Business Journal this week in recognition of its exceptional work in bringing affordable education to underserved students. The Phoenix Business Journal named the School Tuition Organization (STO) as an honoree of the Arizona Corporate Excellence (ACE) Awards and Best Places to Work Award.

“I am so proud of our Dream Team, their commitment to the mission and to one another. You can only achieve this recognition, record revenue results and community impact with a healthy culture built on trust, respect and value for one another,” said Nancy Padberg, MBA, president and CEO of Catholic Education Arizona.

Padberg is a 2023 ATHENA Leadership Award Nominee from the Greater Phoenix Chamber, acknowledging her outstanding leadership and dedication to creating future leaders. The ATHENA Award honors outstanding women in leadership roles.

Catholic Education Arizona ranked amongst the top revenue-generating and fastest-growing businesses in the Valley in the annual ACE Awards in the Top NonProfit Organization Category. Other winners in the NonProfit category were the notable Arizona Humane Society, Boys & Girls Club of the Valley, FSL and Child Crisis Arizona.

The Phoenix Business Journal also named the STO as an honoree of the Best Places to Work award in the micro-business category. This award serves as a testament to the organization’s dedication to corporate excellence, a healthy culture, and a passion for bringing quality Catholic education to underserved children.

“We are delighted that Nancy and her team have been recognized for their award-winning, exceptional culture and impressive revenue growth. As business leaders know, culture drives performance. Many underserved students will benefit from Catholic Education Arizona’s performance,” said Bryan Brady, CEA board chairman.

Individuals and corporations continue to support Catholic Education Arizona and the Diocese of Phoenix Catholic Schools because of their impressive results:

  • 98-percent graduation rate
  • 96-percent matriculation to higher education, trade school, or enter military service
  • 1000s of service hours conducted annually

Catholic Education Arizona is the largest provider of scholarships to families attending Catholic schools in the Diocese of Phoenix. Since 1998, $338 million has been raised and 153,000 scholarships have been awarded. Catholic Education Arizona is changing lives one scholarship at a time through tax credits, planned gifts, and donations. Visit or call (602) 218-6542 to learn more.