Donation Essentials Blog

Light in the Darkness: Donate Life Float Wins Judges Trophy at 131st Rose Parade

For the second consecutive year, the Donate Life Rose Parade float has been awarded the Judges Trophy! The coveted award recognizes the float with the outstanding floral design and dramatic impact. This is the fourth time since the float’s inception in 2004 that the float has taken home this award also having been honored in 2008, 2012 and 2019.

2020 Theme and Design

Award-winning float designer Charles Meier created the float’s incredible design and Fiesta Parade Floats produced it with the help of thousands of volunteers and countless flowers.

This year’s parade theme, The Power of Hope, honors the opportunity to look beyond challenges of the moment and light a path to a brighter future. In its 17th year in the Rose Parade, the 2020 Donate Life float, “Light in the Darkness” will highlight the power of unity, light and love as celebrated during Southeast Asia’s Diwali, or the Festival of Lights, a celebration of light shining in the darkness. The many lives that have been touched by donation embody the hope inherent in the festival.

More than 2,500 Donate Life volunteers provided over 10,000 decoration hours to complete this year’s float, which boasted 20,000 pink roses, and floral portraits of deceased organ, eye and tissue donors to pay tribute to those who are no longer with us.

2020 Donate Life Colorado Float Rider: Juan Carlos Montanez

Each year, the float is ridden and escorted by people from across the country that have been impacted by organ, eye and tissue donation. For more than a decade, Donor Alliance has sponsored one rider each year to represent Donate Life Colorado aboard the float. This year, we were honored to have Juan Carlos Montanez, a kidney recipient, represent Colorado and the greater Hispanic community. His donor’s generous gift of life is just one of the many reasons he has dedicated his time to raising awareness for the lifesaving gift of organ and tissue donation.

You can help spread hope and support the Donate Life Rose Parade float’s mission by signing up to be an organ, eye and tissue donor. Sign up anytime by visiting your state registry and clicking on ‘Become a Donor’: or

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