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Valley homeless shelter to undergo makeover

PHOENIX -- Arizona Diamondbacks employees and Valley contractors are lending a hand to give a local shelter a makeover.

Starting Friday and through the weekend, local plumbers, tradesmen and contractors, along with about 50 Diamondbacks employees, will be doing some heavy lifting to revamp the St. Vincent de Paul's shelter for older adults.

"The Diamondback employees have raised $61,000 through the Home Plate Project," said Mary Chou-Thompson with the shelter. "They'll be replacing our flooring, putting in new rugs, carpeting and tiles and new bathrooms."

Ozanam Manor is located at 1730 E. Monroe St. in Phoenix. Chou-Thompson said the shelter helps people transition from chronic homelessness to self-sufficiency.

"We provide mentorship and counseling, job search and housing search," she said.

Chou-Thompson said the money was raised by auctioning celebrity home plates, including an autographed plate by Jay Leno and another hand-drawn plate by Twilight star Robert Pattinson.

Leslie Pool Supplies donated $25,000 to kick-start the project.

About the Author

Martha is the traffic controller in the KTAR newsroom. Her full time role is that of Assignment and Breaking News Editor of KTAR News. She oversees daily Breaking News planning and over-the air execution, and puts together the elements that make it happen. She gathers and distributes daily news assignments to reporters and editors. She also reports on a daily basis, anchors news afternoons 1-2p and fills in as anchor occasionally during other time slots. She began working at KTAR in the winter of 2012 as Desk Editor and was promoted to oversee Assignments and Breaking News in 2014. During that time, she received two awards as a journalist. The first was the 2013 APTRA Awards, where she took home 2nd place for Best Serious Future in the "Recycled Orchestra." The second was a 2014 Edward R. Murrow Award for her collaboration in KTAR's Voice for a Better Arizona Series: Immigration - seeking solutions. In her piece, Martha profiled two Arizona sisters looking for the DREAM. Martha was born in Mazatlan, Mexico. She moved to Arizona in 1996 with her parents and younger sister and has lived here since. She attended Barry Goldwater High School in Phoenix and graduated from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communications at Arizona State University in Tempe. Prior to working at KTAR news she worked in news and production at Univision Arizona in Phoenix. She also supervised the marketing, catering and public relations department at Hotel Araiza, 5-star hotel in Mexicali, Mexico. She has also been a personal trainer and aerobics instructor. When she isn't in the newsroom or behind the microphone Martha is an avid gym-goer and marathoner. She trains for two races a year and enjoys taking group exercise classes, such as kickboxing, indoor cycling and weight lifting. Martha is married and lives in Surprise, AZ with 2 dogs, Tasha and Elsa, and a cat, Sammy.


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