PPAI Hall of Fame member and former PPAI board chair Don Edwards, CAS, appeared on KVOI AM 1030’s “What’s Up AZ” on Saturday to discuss his role as an Honorary Commander at Davis Monthan Air Force Base.

A Korean War veteran, Tucson resident Edwards used the G.I. Bill to get his bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and to this day works to give back to the military that has supported him in life. After a trip to South Korea in the mid-1990s, where one of his sons was living and working in Seoul, he organized a reunion in Tucson for his unit in Korea, the U.S. Army’s 772nd Military Police Battalion. Edwards continued to oversee the annual reunions until two years ago, when age and health reasons limited battalion members’ ability to travel.

Edwards is also the charter president of the Tucson Veterans Toastmasters Club, an organization dedicated to helping homeless veterans find employment, and a lifetime member of the Korean War Veterans Association. After delivering a Memorial Day address in Tucson, he was appointed Honorary Commander of Davis Monthan’s 355 Logistics Readiness Squadron. A two-year appointment, Edwards is 18 months into his term.

“Having been a grunt GI, to be an honorary commander, it’s a tremendous feeling of pride and appreciation,” says Edwards. “It means so much to me and them that we can connect in a meaningful way. They invite me to everything and I attend. It’s a wonderful thing to be a part of.”

Edwards started his distributorship, Don Edwards Marketing, in the 1960s in Fairfield County, Connecticut, and built his business serving the packaged goods industry. He was elected chairman of the PPAI Board of Directors in 1978, named a promotional products person of the year by Counselor magazine in 1980 and inducted into the PPAI Hall of Fame in 1989. During the Reagan administration, he served an 18-month term as commissioner of education and training for the White House conference on small business.

To listen to a podcast of the What’s Up AZ featuring Edwards, click here.