Partners in Wellness featuring DPR Construction


Banner Health Foundation gratefully acknowledges DPR Construction for supporting our youngest patients by arranging a fundraising event called, “King of the Playground”. DPR Construction’s support helps ensure a bright future for Arizona’s children facing illness or injury.

We recently sat down with the DPR Construction team to learn what inspired their support of the Banner Health Foundation.

Describe the ways that DPR Construction and its partners has found meaningful impact in organizing the “King of the Playground” tournament in support of play spaces at Banner Children’s medical centers. Consider sharing what inspired this event and support.

There are dollars and then there's seeing firsthand how those dollars support a cause. For Jake Smaellie, DPR Construction superintendent, that moment came when his daughter developed Kawasaki disease. "We always say we make a difference and I really felt it for myself when one of my babies was here at Banner Children's,” says Jake. “This is where DPR has worked on patient towers, operating rooms and imaging floors. That really brought everything full circle for me.”

Jake saw how important play spaces were to patients and their families. He also knew all the work Banner Health Foundation did to support not only children like his own, but under-resourced members of the community with things like mobile and community clinics that provide free basic health care services to uninsured children in Arizona.

How does this event and gift reflect DPR Construction’s culture and goals?

"We exist to build great things," says Tim Hyde, one of DPR's senior project managers and the firm's southwest community initiatives leader. "But that just doesn't mean the facilities we build. It's also great relationships, partnerships and communities. Together with Banner, this event was a complete team effort all the way."

What advice can DPR Construction share with other corporations considering a fundraiser or gift to Banner Children’s?

For Jake, it comes down to having a plan and knowing what you want to accomplish. "You can always ask, ‘How can I help?’ But when you use your skills, resources and passions to come up with creative ideas to support nonprofits and bring them to those organizations, it changes things." Helping find new approaches to raise funds help create more of an event rather than normal fundraisers that can seem to compete with one another. "We've done cornhole tournaments to finding ways for fantasy football leagues to help drive participation and money for our nonprofit partners," says Jake. "I'd encourage everyone to focus on their passions, design events around them and they'll see how it helps get people excited to jump in."

Want to learn more about Banner Children's? Get in touch with a member of our team by calling 602.747.4483 or emailing