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The Man Who Saved the Rose Bowl Float — My Sunday Column for News-Press & Leader

Some people might see the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year’s Day
as so 20th century — early 20th century — but not Dave Weaver.

The
longtime Glendale city councilman has volunteered for 18 years to work
long hours with hundreds of others to help keep the city’s 98-year Rose
Parade tradition alive.

That was no easy task this year, with the city struggling financially
and finding public contributions to the cost of the float amounting to
less than $600 of the $50,000 needed. Then, an email popped up in
Weaver’s inbox from a guy he didn’t know named Sam Solakyan offering to
cover the full amount.

“I nearly fell out of my chair,” Weaver recalled. “It was unreal.”

Hours
later, Caruso Affiliated executive and past president of the Glendale
Chamber of Commerce Rick Lemmo told the City Council that billionaire
developer Rick Caruso was putting up a $25,000 challenge grant to save
the Rose Parade Float.

Sam Solakyan isn’t in Caruso’s league
financially — yet. But give him time. He’s only 30, an entrepreneurial
wizard who has put together Global Holdings Inc., which owns and
operates 14 companies mainly in the medical technology field, including a
leading edge radiology firm.

Not bad for a guy whose family
emigrated from Armenia when he was 6, grew up in North Hollywood, went
to L.A. Valley College and got his degree from the University of
Phoenix.

(READ FULL STORY)

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2 Responses to The Man Who Saved the Rose Bowl Float — My Sunday Column for News-Press & Leader

  1. Anonymous says:

    “Sam Solakyan isn’t in Caruso’s league financially — yet. But give him time. He’s only 30, an entrepreneurial wizard who has put together Global Holdings Inc., which owns and operates 14 companies mainly in the medical technology field, including a leading edge radiology firm.”
    We in Los Angeles need this kind of person -
    intelligent, educated, capable and a real kind of guy!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thank God for cities like Pasadena that preserve traditions that allow each new generation to enjoy what their grandparents did even as LA continues to destroy its past. For example, one of the main attractions to people all over the world who come to LA is Hollywood ie. the establishments that were frequented by the stars they grew up with and the homes they lived in. Instead, they get a crappy mini-mall instead of the Brown Derby or an even crappier CRA-funded high rise with no context to its surroundings. And, if anyone thinks that tourists come here to see downtown or LA Live, think again. This kind of sctick is everywhere.
    Imagine you went to Europe to experience history & found that a similar person as our crap Mayor, Jan Perry & Durazo had already destroyed it with stadiums & vacant high rises. All the grand piazzas in Italy would be demolished for football or baseball stadiums, Dante’s house would be a fast food restaurant except in Jan Perry’s district where residents would have no choice for anything, and so forth.
    How 4 million LA residents can sit quietly on the sidelines while a handful of people continue to destroy our heritage is amazing. Lastly, thank God for a handful of decent humans like Solakyan who deserve our admiration for preserving a tradition he was introduced to only about 24 years back.

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