Leading by example, Kasser Family builds strong legacy for Alzheimer’s care


Fluent in six languages and with advanced degrees from MIT, Harvard Business School, and the University of Grenoble-France, Tucson real estate investor Mike Kasser clearly has a sharp mind. That’s why he became concerned recently when he began struggling with his memory.

Mike and Beth Kasser are ensuring Southern Arizona has world-class Alzheimer's care and resources now and for generations to come.

“I had a relative who had Alzheimer’s and I worried it could eventually impact me. When I found out there was an established center in Tucson, I was very enthusiastic,” says Mike. He met with Dr. Allan Anderson, Executive Director of the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute Toole Family Memory Center in Tucson.

Testing showed that Mike, now 82, did not have the pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease. Instead, Dr. Anderson felt his sleep struggles combined with normal age-related cognitive decline could be causing his memory lapses. Mike was relieved, and thankful to have the resources of the world-class Banner Alzheimer’s Institute and its Toole Family Memory Center less than a mile from his home. And, recognizing the importance of Alzheimer’s research, Mike volunteered to participate as a healthy test subject in a clinical trial investigating a potential new treatment.

Mike and his wife Beth are generous community members, and recently added BAI to their list of supported charities. The Kasser’s generous gift comes with the honor of naming the Physical Therapy room at the Institute, while it also served to furnish and stock the Wellness Center, too. Patients can enjoy group fitness and wellness classes, such as chair yoga and boxing for those with Parkinson’s disease.

Since its opening in 2020, BAI Tucson has seen tremendous growth: doubling the number of new patient visits and return visits and tripling the number of Family & Caregiver Support visits. Meanwhile, the newly opened Neuro Wellness program already boasts a robust schedule of classes that take place in the stunning new Wellness Center. These classes are offered free of charge thanks to charitable investment by donors and community partners.

“Having BAI here in Tucson is an insurance policy, not only for me but for others. If it weren’t there and I were to develop Alzheimer’s, what would I do? It’s a charity where I was thinking of myself as a potential user of the facility, but it will help so many people in our community,” Mike explains.

Support the Banner Alzheimer's Institute - Tucson

Choose Toole Family Memory Center from the gift designation menu.