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Penny Lambright
2019

Penny Lambright

The David Chow Humanitarian 2019 Award

Penny Lambright is the Founder and the CEO of Patriots and Paws. Patriots and Paws started out of a need of taking care of our Veterans, Active Duty, and Reservist. Penny’s nephew who at the time had served two tours in Afghanistan and Iraq came home and brought to Penny’s attention the fact that some of his soldiers were in need and there were no options for them. Penny’s dad served in World War II and Korea and was in seven major battles before he was twenty-one. He built furniture in the 50’s out of fruit crates, the need was as prevalent as it is today, there is just more attention brought to it now, then there was then.

In late 2011, Patriots and Paws became a nonprofit and in its first year it took care of over 250 families, then the following year 500 families, then 954 families. In 2015, the organization helped 1006 families and in 2016 the organization helped 981 families. It is an all volunteer organization and just last year the volunteers put in over 14,500 hours.

At Patriots and Paws, the organization takes care of any Veteran, Active Duty, and Reservist throughout Southern California from Fresno to the Arizona border to the Mexican border to the Pacific Ocean.

The Paws part of the organization is that it will unite a rescued animal with a Veteran who would like an animal so that it can be trained to become a service animal. The organization works with two local agencies that are Veteran owned that train the Veterans and their dogs to become service animals. This gives a purpose and saves two lives.

Patriots and Paws does not take government funding as it would place limitations on those that the organization can help.

The organization would like to expand to Las Vegas and Phoenix and even across the nation in the next five to ten years. In the next one to two years, the organization would like to expand its Paws program.

The organization would like to have a kennel that would be open to the public. The kennel would allow the organization to provide a place for a Veteran to place an animal when the Veteran gets medical treatments or help for drugs or alcohol. Many Veterans do not get medial treatments because they don’t have a place to take their pet. The kennel would be a way to support them and they would still be able to have their animal when they came back. In the military, you were taught to leave no one behind and they will not leave behind their four legged family members.