25 Things You Didn’t Know About…Phil Pangrazio

October 5, 2009

So now that you know all the kooky, off-the-wall facts about the HMA team, it’s time to introduce you to some of our wonderful clients.  First up is Phil Pangrazio, executive director of the Arizona Bridge to Independent Living (ABIL).  ABIL offers and promotes programs designed to empower people with disabilities to take personal responsibility so that they may achieve or continue independent lifestyles within the community.  A great organization, and a fantastic client – and Phil isn’t too shabby either.


  1. When I was 11 years old, I hit a grand slam in my first at-bat on opening day of Little League.  I struck out in my next three at-bats.
  2. I played fullback and linebacker for my high school’s football team that won the 1978 New York State Section V Class C championship.
  3. I once pre-boarded a plane with Muhammad Ali.
  4. stella artoisMy wife and I named our dog after our favorite beer – Stella Artois.
  5. I have six brothers and one sister, and I’m the youngest.
  6. I moved to Arizona from western New York (i.e. Rochester area) in 1981.
  7. I completed my undergraduate and graduate degrees at ASU in 1986 and 1990, respectively.
  8. My celebrity crush is Julia Roberts.
  9. I met Jake Plummer at the Rock N Rodeo. We of course talked football!
  10. I, along with a few other local guys, helped start the sport of quad rugby in Arizona in 1990.
  11. PhilRugbyBecause of my involvement with the sport, I’m connected to an Oscar-nominated documentary (“Murderball”).  I was not, however, in the movie.
  12. My father-in-law, a former vice president of a meat packing company, provided all the meat (tenderloin) for our wedding.
  13. Recently, on my way to an ASU football game, I got caught in the light rail crossing and my van was hit repeatedly by the crossing gate.  Once I cleared the tracks, I was reprimanded by a police officer for my actions.  No ticket, though!
  14. My brother and I once stalked McLean Stevenson (Lt. Colonel Henry Blake on the TV series M*A*S*H) when we saw him at Disneyland.  There was a video camera involved.
  15. The Buffalo Bills are my favorite football team.
  16. My favorite place to travel (so far) is the Caribbean.
  17. My first job was picking corn for $1.50 an hour.  In the summer as a teenager, I would milk cows for $2.00 an hour, and I milked about 60 cows each morning for a local dairy farmer!
  18. I have six nieces and three nephews.
  19. Phil Pangrazio 2008In addition to my work with ABIL, I sit on the board of directors for the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) and the Diversity Leadership Alliance (DLA).
  20. ABIL is currently trying to raise money for the Virginia G. Piper Sports and Fitness Center for Persons with Disabilities.  The SpoFit, coupled with the Disability Empowerment Center of Arizona (DEC), will be the first of its kind in the country.
  21. My favorite musician is Bruce Springsteen – I’ve seen The Boss in concert three times.
  22. I once saw both Neil Young and the Moody Blues from front row seats.  Plus, I’m going to U2 on October 20!
  23. One of my favorite foods is pork ribs.
  24. I tried to play piano when I was a teenager, but quickly found out I am not musically inclined.
  25. My four favorite athletes as a young boy were: Reggie Jackson, Roger Staubach, John Havlicek and Muhammad Ali.

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