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John DawsonJohn Dawson

A long-time friendship led to a new area for children with cleft lip and palate, and other craniofacial disorders at Barrow Neurological Institute.

“It’s big. It’s beautiful. It’s bright and clean,” says Patricia Glick, DMD, an orthodontist at the Barrow Cleft and Craniofacial Center, of the Emily Davis Treatment Area.

John Dawson, owner of the Scottsdale Plaza Resort, provided funding for the center in honor of his best friend Bob Marrs’ stepdaughter, Emily Davis. Davis, now 24, was born with cleft lip and palate. The young special education teacher began treatment when she was 12 days old. 

“I couldn’t believe it,” says Davis of Dawson’s gift. “It was such a kind thing to do, not only for me but for my family and for all the kids who will come here.”

Dawson and Marrs have known each other for more than 40 years. Dawson became acquainted with Davis after her mother, Jill, and Marrs wed.

“She is a really remarkable young woman,” Dawson says. “I told her she’s been touched by an angel. She’s very special, an inspiration.”

Dawson decided to make a contribution to the renovation of the Barrow Cleft and Craniofacial Center after learning of the project from Barrow Neurological Foundation. The gift was made through the 2009 Barrow Grand Ball.

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