We had the good fortune of connecting with Brad Taylor and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Brad, let’s talk legacy – what do you want yours to be?
When my daughter was diagnosed with cancer, I have never felt such incredible grief and helplessness. I knew there was nothing I could do to change our circumstances and that we just had to push forward and do the best we could to make her well. As we went about our journey, I discovered a missing piece in the holistic approach to healing children and we made the decision to do something about it. Deciding to pursue building Lily’s Pad, a hyper clean indoor playground for immunocompromised kids, was not an easy choice. I knew that it was going to take a lot of work and that there would be challenges and unexpected obstacles. I also knew that instead of putting my daughter’s cancer journey behind me, Lily’s Pad would make me relive the experience on a daily basis. But I also believed I was called to do it. And choosing to become a part of the solution transformed me and my family from feeling like victims of our circumstances to feeling like people with a purpose. And that’s what I want my legacy to be and what I want to be remembered for. And it’s also my advice to all who ask me how I got through it. I tell them, when you find yourself feeling the most helpless, it’s up to you to find the parts you can control. Fight the fight, no matter what, and keep on fighting.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
My professional career has recently taken on quite a different path. Just a few short years ago, I was the Vice President of Sales for our family’s catering business. We were really hitting our stride when COVID came along and changed everything. It became obvious to us as a family that it was time to focus our attention on different endeavors. Lily’s Pad, our nonprofit, needed someone at the helm and although this was my vision, it wasn’t meant to be my baby. My sister took on the project and has been taking Lily’s Pad to the next level, grant writing and working to get the funds we need to get the facility built. I’m honored to sit as the President on our Board of Directors and to help shape the direction that this organization takes. But I leave the daily grind to my sister. I know I put this project into the right hands. As for me, I embarked on a new career path in insurance. Believe it or not, I am passionate about it! Insurance is what saved my family from likely bankruptcy when my daughter fell ill and I have made it my personal mission to help educate people on what they need in order to protect themselves. And I’m blessed to work for a company that supports my efforts to build Lily’s Pad both financially and with opportunities to share my story. It is just another example of how unexpected circumstances can change your situation and it’s up to you to grab control of the things you can and find the silver lining.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If you’re visiting me, you better love the outdoors because that’s what I am all about! I love being outside and it’s one of my favorite things about Arizona. Although I might have different plans if they visited in our summer months, any friends who visit me will get treated to some fantastic spots! I’d take them fishing at the local lakes and probably bring my RV out to show them the great lake camping spots that are close by. I would definitely want to run them up to Sedona and Oak Creek as well for some amazing hiking and site seeing. The mountains of Arizona are my happy place so I’d take them up to Pinetop or even just up to Prescott for a shorter trip. There are some great breweries I’d want to show off and some awesome little hidden restaurants along the way.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to dedicate my shoutout to my parents, Al and Michelle Taylor. They have always been great parents, supportive and full of love. They taught me to be relentless and to never give up on anything you want. But when Lily was diagnosed, they took their support to an entirely different level. My Mom became one of her caregivers, my Dad became my sounding board, and they both made sure I didn’t have to lose my job to take care of my daughter. When the idea of Lily’s Pad came up, it was never a question that they would be a part of it. They have supported this dream and this vision with all they have and we would not be where we are today if it wasn’t for them. Lily’s Pad will be a testament to their tenacity and big hearts and I’m blessed to have them.

Website: www.lilyspadaz.org

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lilyspadaz/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/lilyspadaz

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LilysPadAZ

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lilyspadaz

Image Credits
Lily’s Pad Discover

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutArizona is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.