2023 grand marshals
Angelica Salas is the Executive Director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA), and is widely regarded as one of the most gifted activist/organizers in the country today.
Since becoming CHIRLA’s director in 1999, Salas has spearheaded and won several ambitious campaigns. She helped win in-state tuition and access to financial aid for undocumented immigrant students, driver’s licenses, legal services and healthcare for the undocumented community in California. Salas is also a leading national spokesperson and organizer on federal immigration policy.
She is a prominent figure in ethnic and mainstream press and is often quoted on all issues related to immigrant well-being. Under Salas’ leadership, CHIRLA and its national partners have built the foundation for the upsurge in immigrant rights activism. She is a leader in national coalitions of organizations that have successfully mobilized millions of immigrants to demand just and humane immigration reform with a path to citizenship, family reunification, and protection of civil and labor rights. One of her greatest accomplishments at CHIRLA has been the transformation of a social service provision coalition into a statewide mass membership organization that empowers immigrants to engage in advocacy on their own behalf.
Today CHIRLA weaves together organizing, electoral civic engagement, community education, policy advocacy, and legal services to engage and empower immigrant families fully.
Angelica comes by her understanding of the immigrant experience firsthand. As a five-year-old, she came to the U.S. from Mexico to rejoin her undocumented parents, who had come to the U.S. to provide for their family. Pasadena, California has been home since she arrived in the U.S. She is a graduate of Pasadena High School and graduated from Occidental College with a B.A in History and B.A. in Sociology. She received an Honorary from her Alma Mater in 2007. Angelica Salas is married to Mayron Payes, an immigrant from El Salvador, and has two adult children, Maya and Ruben Payes.
Community Grand Marshal
Yuny Parada came to the United States from El Salvador at the age of 18. She settled in Pasadena shortly thereafter and has called it her home since 1979.
Since then, Parada has worked tirelessly for the empowerment of Latinos in her community while using education as the backbone for her cause. She began her passion for service with her role as a Human Relations Commissioner for the City of Pasadena, which she held for many years. Parada has also served on the board for the League of Women Voters of Pasadena where she worked towards her vision of equity and inclusion for the Latino Community in Pasadena. She championed interethnic relations through her involvement in the Leadership in Inter-Ethnic Relations (LDIR) program and translated those lessons into participation in the inaugural class of Leadership Pasadena. Parada has had a wide array of community involvement, currently serving as a board member of the Pasadena Chapter of the ACLU and the President’s Latino Advisory Committee of Pasadena City College.
Parada proudly raised her 3 children in Pasadena and serves now in one of her most demanding positions yet —grandmother to 6 children.