Pro’s & Board Members


Mark Hannah, CEO











Pro Advisory Board:           

Roman Gabriel, NFL

Bobby Douglass,NFL

Charley Johnson, NFL

Billy Kilmer, NFL

Kenneth F. Lind

Paul Hornung NFL (HOF)

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Special Kids~Special Needs

Special Kid_Final_72 ACF logo

Pros for America’s Youth, along with Arizona Charities Foundation, is proud to announce our new program Special Kids – Special Needs.

There are estimated to be more than 10,000 children in Arizona alone that suffer from a classified “special needs” disorder. Our children face the challenges of Muscular Dystrophy, Cerebral Palsy, Downs Syndrome, Autism, Multiple Sclerosis and other diseases and disorders that impair their ability to enjoy so many of the things that many of us take for granted.

child-downs syn (2)

By providing venues, games, resources and events for these amazing, happy, lovable kids…the PFAY Special Kids-Special Needs program gives a momentary burst of joy and a sense of pride every month to each of our participating children and their families. From a movie night to a ballroom formal dance, from the water park to a children’s art exhibit, our sole focus is to help our beautiful children feel like “special” kids for at least one wonderful, fun filled day every month.

child-downs syn (1) Boy at Fair

Just one look at their bright eyes, big smiles, and of course all the giggles and belly laughs…and you can see the motivation we have to do what we do for these incredible, special children.

Arizona Charities Foundation is helping us raise money to hold these monthly events that are free to those families with Special Needs children. Any support that you may be able to provide is greatly appreciated. We can even give you a coupon Gift Card featuring dozens of local merchant discounts, BOGO’s and coupons if you are able to make a small contribution to help sponsor one of our kids.

kid cerebral-palsy-physcial-therapy

If you would like to see a few pictures from our latest Special Kids event, click here.

Our beautiful children deserve happiness, and with your help, we can give them one shining moment every month where they feel “special” and loved. Thank you for caring and thank you for your support!

America’s Cancer Kids

Pros for Americas Youth (PFAY) has been helping Americas kids get and stay healthy for over 20 years. Through all of our various programs, from our kNOw Tobacco program to the Healthy Straw to our continued support of Youth Baseball leagues, PFAY’s “GET FIT, STAY FIT” slogan has been nationally recognized for years.


While most children have a choice on how to do just that (GET FIT, STAY FIT), unfortunately some kids don’t have a say on their own health and well being. That’s why PFAY wants to help all children including those who get to choose how they live, and those who don’t.

Americas Cancer Kids_Final_72

Our America’s Cancer Kids program helps those children in selected communities who have life threatening illnesses or diseases which may prevent them from GETTING FIT and STAYING FIT. With over 13,000 children being diagnosed with a form of cancer each year (, PFAY wants to bring a ray of hope, a smile and maybe even laughter, if even for just a few moments, to as many of these amazing kids as financially possible.

Kid drawing hair

As PFAY procures funding in each of our 50 United States, cancer stricken children in each funded state can receive surprise gifts baskets (called Monkey Baskets) filled with toys, games, special event tickets, gift cards, clothing, electronics and of course, monkeys!! PFAY even arranges an occasional visit to the hospitals from one of our Hall of Fame athletes! In some of these children’s darkest moments, PFAY, in cooperation with the children’s parents, caregivers and current medical professionals, will bring a smile to a childs face that even the most healthiest of kids would be envious of.

With funding through grants, public, private and corporate contributions, local and national fundraising, and through donations from passionate individuals throughout America, PFAY will continue to bring those incredible smiles to America’s Cancer Kids who proudly fight the struggle of cancer every day of their lives.

Dad kissing kid

Our initially nominated America’s Cancer Kids state was Arizona. PFAY was proud to announce the Arizona Cancer Kids program in 2014 with hopes of delivering as many surprise Monkey Baskets to as many Arizona Cancer Kids as possible. Kids love monkeys for their silly antics and human like behavior so we bring that playfulness to Arizona Cancer Kids in a basket full of gifts and goodies.

Initial gift baskets were delivered to Phoenix Children’s Hospital (PCH). Since then, we have delivered hundreds of baskets to PCH, The Ryan House in Phoenix, Cardon Children’s Medical Center in Mesa and Diamond Children’s Medical Center in Tucson. With a goal of 100 Monkey Baskets being delivered each month, it is imperative that we reach as many kids as possible due to the unfair, but realistically short life span many of these children are suffering through.

Pink Shirt Girl

Photographs and videos of the gift baskets being delivered, capturing these precious and touching delivery moments, will be posted on our Facebook page at , as permitted by the child’s parent or caregiver, in celebration of their child’s special day.

If you would like your state to be next up on our list of America’s Cancer Kids recipients, please contact us via email at and let us know about your child’s cancer related illness and how PFAY can help bring a huge smile to his or her face, and quite likely generate a few giggles too, through our Monkey Basket gift program.

Global Rescuers

global rescuersPros For America’s Youth Foundation is going to help Global Rescuers get donations for their plight of helping animals and people that need to be rescued.


Global Rescuers needs funds to continue the work of producing quality programming about people, rescuing animals, rescuing people. Our mission is to show the people who do the work of rescue, all the while getting rescued themselves. Abandoned animals are often euthanized quickly to reduce the numbers in shelters.The show features the groups waiting at the other end of the shelters to take these animals, vet them and get them adopted into forever homes. There are literally thousands of stories of rescue of animals and people, our goal is to tell their stories. The four premises of the show are: donate, volunteer and pay it forward.


 In honor of Meghan our sheep dog who passed away in May of 2014


 Sheriff Joe Arpaio, Kimber Leigh (Producer),  Cory Mandell (Executive Producer)


To raise awareness, thus raising our collective consciousness, around the world as we serve as a conduit between those that rescue animals and those whose lives can be enriched by the stories waiting to be told.  



Pros For America’s Youth is working hard to help the youth of this country fight obesity.  If something is not done to help these children, we will lose a large percentage of them due to health problems that will lead to death at an early age. This will cost our country billions of tax dollars for their health care.  Our Chairman, Mark Hannah, has an answer to help educate about the dangers of obesity and how to fight it by joining forces with another non-profit organization, Operation Tone Up. (

Our objective is to have Hall of Fame athletes Paul Hornung—NFL, Mike Ditka—NFL, Dick Butkus—NFL, John Havlicek–NBA, Gayle Sayers—NFL, Sam Huff–NFL, Tony Dorsett—NFL, Earl Campbell—NFL, Nick Buoniconti–NFL, Phil Niekro—MLB, Ferguson Jenkins—MLB, Don Maynard—NFL, Jan Stenerud—NFL, Bill Mazeroski—MLB, Bobby Orr—NHL, Paul Molitor—MLB, Robin Yount—MLB, Bob Lanier–NBA ( If their present contracts will allow and they agree to do for our cause), record a ninety second commercial for Pros For America’s Youth that we can use in our classroom presentation. These commercials can be shown in the local regions where that athlete played their sport. We will be able, because of the power of television and the Internet, to invite some of the influential people in the various communities who can support this concept of saving lives.

The core program sponsored by Pros for America’s Youth is our awareness program, an awareness prevention program that targets elementary schools only. The program’s approach is clear: We educate the children at a very early age about the dangers of OBESITY, and how to fight it.

A key component of the program will be CD educational tapes issued to each school. These CDs will teach the causes of obesity and how to combat it. Operation Tone Up and Pros For America’s Youth will also have the help of Influence the Cause, which is a fundraising organization that uses videos and other various marketing tools to inform the public of our programs.


“kNOw Tobacco®” Program Overview

One of our first and very successful programs sponsored by Pros For America’s Youth Foundation (PFAY) was the “kNOw Tobacco®” program.

“kNOw Tobacco®” is an educational and awareness prevention program that targets elementary schools only.  The program’s approach is clear: “Be Smart, Never Start”!  The children are presented with facts about tobacco and results of tobacco use.  We empower the children to decide not to use tobacco products and to choose a healthy lifestyle.

This interactive program is designed for children to have fun while learning about the dangers of tobacco.  The program kicks off with a school-wide assembly, which introduces the program’s dinosaur mascot, Knowtobaccosaurus Rex©, and program information.  The children and teachers are trained and prepared for the program.  Teacher guides, “kNOw Tobacco®” videos, and coloring/comic books are introduced through our web site. We ask the children to join our “Be Smart, Never Start” club. Membership packets are sent home for parental approval.  Upon joining, the students receive a certificate, membership card with access to the “kNOw Tobacco®” educational program web site.  When the school has completed the membership drive, it receives a Dinosaur Trophy Award as a constant reminder of the school’s pledge to “Be Smart, Never Start” to tobacco use. 

A key component of the program is a dinosaur character named Knowtobaccosaurus Rex©.  He is the authority on tobacco use and engages the children in a coloring book and comic book story.  The books discuss the dangers of tobacco use and promote tobacco-free lifestyles by empowering children to make a positive choice for their overall health and well being. We introduce various dinasaurs who have become extinct, they are the following:Smokesalottacigasaurus, Coughanhacasaur, Chewtobaccospitasaur, Wollymammathpuffapypaderm,Stuntagrowthasaurus,Tynababysaurus,Yellowteethtobaccobreathasurus,
, Secondhansmokeasaur, Ciggarasaurus, Tumorasaur, and Taralungasuar. Contact Mark Hannah at (606) 465-2400


Mission Statement

Pros For America’s Youth Foundation is dedicated to helping all children in making better decisions.  We have had prgrams in anti-drugs and anti-smoking that were very successful, but today there is a much larger problem facing our youth, OBESITY

Children today need to learn to make the right decisions about what the chose to do for their health.  We have adopted a preventative approach to factors that threaten our young leaders.  This ideology is reflected in our slogans: “GET FIT,STAY FIT and”Be Smart, Never Start”, by kNOwing about the dangers of tobacco use.  It is our belief that through education we can bridge the communication gap and positively impact our children’s lives.  Athletes realize the importance of getting fit and staying away from tobacco, and if we can touch the lives of just some of our youth, then we have accomplished our goal.

Mark Hannah and Pros for Americas Youth

Mark Hannah at Tecolote Beach

Mark Hannah at Tecolote Beach

We had the pleasure this week to meet with Mr. Mark Hannah from Kentucky.  He had never been to Baja, never to La Paz!   Mark is an amazing and wonderful man.   After being injured during two tryouts with the NFL, Mark embarked on forming a non profit organization called Pro’s for America’s Youth, that has worked through the school system to educate over 400,000 kids on the dangers of tobacco use. Now his organizatin is helping the youth learn about obesity and how to stop it.

Mark with the Santa Ana family and Ramon Garcia

Mark with the Santa Ana family and Ramon Garcia

Mark has enlisted many of his peers from the NFL, NBA and MLB  to mentor young people around the Americas.  Mark’s current project is to address the childhood obesity problem with America’s youth with the introduction of the HEALTHY STRAW, a unique non system of being able to get one’s need for A GREAT TASTING DRINK, without all the additives and sugars in todays sodas and sports drinks.

Mark was very supportive of our own annual Charity fishing tournament, the La Paz Gold Cup.

KiZa, Newtek, Baja Quest, La Paz Gold Cup Team

KiZa, Newtek, Baja Quest, La Paz Gold Cup Team

This year is our second annual Gold Cup Charity Black and Blue Marlin Fishing tournament.

Through the local Rotary Club this tournament raises funds for the Children of La Paz and DIF, the government agency responsible for the welfare of children in Mexico.

Last year, many needy children received prosthetic limbs, emergency funds, and other forms of support.

You can learn more about Marks program at

For more information, comments or questions, please drop me a line



Pros For America’s Youth Foundation (PFAY) was founded by Mark Hannah in May of 1988 as a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization incorporated in the State of West Virginia. The organization moved to Arizona in 1989. The Foundation has been actively devising and pursuing educational programs for implementation in Arizona’s schools with the assistance of professional athletes.

In 1993 the organization formed the “kNOw Tobacco” campaign as a natural extension of the Foundation’s youth-oriented educational efforts. PFAY originally set out to educate young children on the negative effects of drugs. We soon figured out that tobacco use was the gateway to most drug use, so we have evolved from a group with numerous ideas into a group that is creating and implementing a comprehensive educational school program that is directed to teach the very young children (K-6 grades)that tobacco use can lead to other more harmful drugs. “Be smart, Never Start”

The “kNOw Tobacco®” program is PFAY’s comprehensive education program. We appreciate all the help we have had from the former Governor of West Virginia and now Senator Joe Manchin, who played college football with our Chairman, Mark Hannah.  

We thank, Jack Whitaker, the Powerball Winner who donated the coloring books to every elementary student in West Virginia for our “kNOw Tobacco Program”, and to all the principals and teachers and even the students who made it all possible. We thank you all. We hope everyone can now help us on our new adventure of fighting childhood obesity.

We also want to thank the people in Arizona, like Senator John McCain, Don Hannah, and Ken Lind, who were so helpful in making our program such a success. To help us in our program call Mark Hannah (606) 465-2400

Play it Cool

The Play it Cool Pledge

As a dedicated advocate of the elimination of unnecessary violence in sports, I pledge and promise that I will not accept, nor will I participate in, any level of unnecessary violence, aggression or showmanship in any sport that I play.

I will conduct myself in a manner that exemplifies good sportsmanship at all times. I will encourage others, through my own behavior, to act in a manner that does not bring unnecessary physical or emotional harm to another.

I will play my sport hard and fair. I will respect all officials of the game in which I am playing.

South Lexington Youth Baseball Play’s it Cool.


The kids at SLYB (South Lexington Youth Baseball)have taken the Play it Cool Pledge.

SLYB produced the 1992, and 2002, 2003, 2006 Cal Ripken 12 year old World Series Champions, as well as runners up in 1998, 1999,2007,2008 and 2010. The league produced such great players former Cincinnati Reds sensation Austin Kearns. Play it Cool assist the league in making parents aware of the importance of keeping a cool head and displaying good sportsmenship, as well as making the kids aware of Pros for America’s Youth flagship program kNOw Tobacco and to BE SMART NEVER START.

Pros for America’s Youth has contributed thousands of dollars to the development of a web based league management system that the kids of SLYB use to communicate and run their league.  Contact us about helping your league run smoothly and efficiently by using this system. Click Here to contact Play it Cool Director Mike Queenan.