Every year in March for the past seven years, Cariloha and its employees have had the great privilege of participating in the David B. Pedersen Foundation’s scholarship program at East High School in Salt Lake City, Utah. Since the Foundation first began in 2005, it has awarded over $80,000 in scholarships.
Former Del Sol CEO and Chairman, Bob Pedersen, and wife, Catherine, including current company President and CEO, Jeff Pedersen, and his six other siblings, created and organized this foundation in honor of their youngest son and brother, David, who passed away in September 2005.
The foundation awards scholarships to outstanding students who have “bounced back” from life’s obstacles and shown resilience and achievement in scholastics and being drug free. The David B. Pedersen Foundation works closely with the Granite Education Foundation and several other amazing teachers throughout Utah, including East High teacher, Leigh VandenAkker, who spearheads an incredible growth and learning program called Techniques for Tough Times, from which several applying students are selected for the David B. Pedersen scholarships.
This year, more than 150 people, including fellow students, families and friends, attended the scholarship ceremonies in support of 32 scholarship hopefuls.
The Pedersen family personally reviews each submitted essay and application for the scholarship, and Jeff Pedersen and his mother, Catherine, conduct all the scholarship applicant interviews to choose ultimately who receives the $1,000 scholarship money. After much deliberation and review of each compelling essay, the Pedersen family awarded 18 students with a $1,000 scholarship, and another 14 students with a $500 scholarship.
“We greatly appreciate everyone’s support of this event,” said Jeff Pedersen. “It’s my favorite time of the year to have the opportunity to sit down with these students one on one and to award them for their achievements in overcoming obstacles in their lives and pursuing a better path for their futures. It means a lot to me and my family to be able to give $25,000 this year to these deserving students. The money goes directly to the students and helps propel them into their next phase of life.”
For the past several years now, the David B. Pedersen Foundation has received overwhelming support from several Cariloha employees, who have made very generous, private contributions. All the foundation’s funds come from private donations, and 100 percent of the donations are given directly to the scholarship recipients.