Veterans Day parade organizer in Scottsdale wins Pay It Forward award

Pay It Forward is sponsored by America First Credit Union and Super Star Car Wash
Pay It Forward is sponsored by America First Credit Union and Super Star Car Wash
Published: Nov. 3, 2022 at 5:44 PM MST|Updated: Nov. 3, 2022 at 6:38 PM MST
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SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- We Paid It Forward in Scottsdale to Paula Pedene, who works hard to put on one of the largest Veterans Day parades in the country. Tom Callinan nominated Pedene for all her efforts. “She is still doing the work and she is doing a great job. I am really impressed with her passion and her commitment. She is going to love this, not just the check, but the awareness of the things that she loves,” he said.

Paula is also a veteran, and showing appreciation to her fellow veterans is important to her. The parade has been happening for the last 26 years, and close to 45,000 people attend. It takes a lot to organize, but because of her hard work, the board wanted to pay it forward to her.

We walked up to Paula and surprised her with the gift. “What we have for you from Pay It Forward is from all the vets and people who love the parade. I wrote a note that means thank you, you did a good job,” said Callinan.

The Veterans Day Parade has over 100 entries, and organizing where each float, balloon, dance group and bands go has its challenges. But Paula says the hard work is worth it. “I’m honored to serve our nations veterans, I am more of a servant leader. I love what I get to do, so I feel blessed. So a thank you like this means so much, thank you,” she said.

If you would like to attend the Veterans Day Parade, it is taking place in Phoenix on Friday, Nov. 11, at 11 a.m. If you would like to nominate someone for our Pay It Forward award, fill out a nomination form on our community page.