MY TURN: We Continue to Serve

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In Tempe, we have so many examples of veterans giving back to our community to enrich our quality of life.

Joe Spracale is one of those veterans who leads the way.  He’s devoted to community service. As an educator, councilmember and founder of the Tempe Impacts Education Foundation, Joe has been a tireless advocate for improving the lives of children and families.

James Grone, has produced the Tempe Veterans’ Day Parade for 37 years. The parade contributes to our community as a living monument to those who’ve proudly worn the uniforms of our nation’s military.

Joanna Sweatt manages an exceptional workforce development program for veterans called “Four Block.” This career readiness program creates a supportive learning environment that has proven to lower the unemployment rate of veterans. The program operates at the Tempe Public Library.

Our Veterans Commission led by Keith Finkle and Michelle Bravo has distinguished itself with our Human Services Department and CARE 7 to offer social services support through the East Valley Veterans Education Center.

As a veteran myself, I’m proud to serve the community alongside the more than 150 veterans who work for the city. Some of the accomplishments the city has realized in supporting our veterans include:

  • Valor on Eighth – A new veterans’ housing development for veterans and families opening in January.
  • Veteran Supportive City – Tempe was the first city in Arizona to receive this recognition from the Governor’s Office.
  • Veterans Commission – Tempe established this commission to advocate for policies and programs important to our city’s veterans.
  • East Valley Veterans Education Center – Tempe collaborated with Maricopa County Community Colleges and other partners to create this center to be the one-stop place for veterans’ services.

Let’s remember to honor and thank the veterans who have served our nation and continue to serve our community.

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Robin Arredondo-Savage

Vice Mayor, City of Tempe

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