Local Renton businessman Bob Bridge is this year’s Grand Marshal of the Annual IKEA Renton River Days Parade, sponsored by Brotherton Cadillac.
Bridge is well known for his work in the Renton community and says he’s honored to receive the recognition, but was quick to shine the spotlgith elsewhere.
“The cooperation, coordination and synergy between business and government that I see in Renton are highly effective and unique,” said Bridge. “As individuals, we all (business owners, government, the school district, civic organizations, churches, etc.) accomplish great things; but, by truly coming together as a community, and creating such meaningful relationships, Renton has been able to experience the ‘bonus effect’ which helps Renton achieve great success that other cities simply cannot. To the degree that I’ve been able to be a spoke in this wheel, is truly my honor.”
Tammy Kaiser, the River Days volunteer Parade Chair says of Bridge’s selection, “Bob has done so much for Renton. He is truly a caring and devoted member of the community. Honoring him as Grand Marshal of the Parade is one small way we can show our appreciation for his continued commitment.”
Bridge has a long history of philanthropic efforts and support for the community including establishing and funding many programs that have improved education for students, such as the Reading Buddies program, an online high school math tutoring program, a teacher appreciation recognition awards program, , and more.
Bridge has also been the driving force and major contributor to the , a community-based organization that promotes Renton Schools and fundraises to help bridge classroom funding gaps through contributions from corporate and small businesses, individual donors, and grants. Bridge is known throughout the region as a business leader with unmatched drive and determination, and a commitment to community engagement.
For more than 20 years, he has been a sponsor of the Annual and is actively involved in supporting , Vision House, , City of Renton Community Services Scholarship Program, youth programs with the Renton Police Department and Swedish Hospital.
In 2008, Bridge was named an Outstanding Citizen as part of the City of Renton Citizen of the Year recognition for his community service. He is also the multiple winner of Toyota's prestigious President's Award, which recognizes outstanding sales, service and community involvement. In May 2010, he was named President of the Washington State Auto Dealers Association.
The public is invited to experience this year’s River Days Parade on Saturday, July 28, starting at 10 a.m., on South 3rd Street in downtown Renton. This year, the Parade features drill teams, cheer squads, Seattle Sounders FC Sound Wave, Seattle Seahawks Blue Thunder Drumline, classic and antique cars, plus much more.
. If you'd like to volunteer helping in the information booth, at various children’s activities, art-related events, helping to keep the park sparkling and litter-free, or for the Parade, email Sharon Murphy, Assistant Volunteer Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 425.235.4614. Most tasks are outdoors and require physical ability. You can also visit www.RentonRiverDays.org for festival volunteer information and to download a Festival Volunteer Application.
Editor's Note: Information provided by the City of Renton.