New Officers & Directors Take Charge at Education Foundation
FL – June 4, 2014 – As she accepted the gavel from her predecessor, Kimberly Page Walker congratulated Cheryl Gordon for leading the Education
Foundation of Sarasota County board of directors through a record-setting year. “We raised more money, and we had a greater
impact on student learning than ever before,” Walker said at the group’s annual
meeting held today at The Field Club. “You
set a high bar, you led by example, and then you coached, cajoled and charmed
us into meeting every goal.”
As the Foundation’s incoming chairwoman,
Walker recognized the efforts of board members, employees, and executive director
Susan Scott. The group has invested $1.2
million in classroom grants, technology, literacy, student awards, teacher
recognition, and other programs for Sarasota County schools during the
2013-2014 academic year.
Walker is an attorney with the law firm of Williams
Parker Harrison Dietz & Getzen, where she heads the firm’s labor and
employment practice. Other officers elected for 2014-2015
were Jason Swift, president of Jon
F. Swift, Inc., as vice chairman; Thomas
Koski, community volunteer and philanthropist, as secretary; and Tricia Fulton, CFO of Sun Hydraulics, returning
New officers installed for 2014-2015 at the Education Foundation’s annual meeting were (left to right) Tom Koski, Secretary, Jason Swift, Vice Chairman, Kimberly Page Walker, Chairman of the Board, and Cheryl Gordon, Immediate Past Chair. Not pictured: Tricia Fulton, Treasurer.
Three new members were elected to the board: Louis
DeCongelio, a retired educator; John
McIntyre, president of McIntyre, Elwell and Strammer, Inc.; and Alix
Morin, community volunteer and co-chair of the Education Foundation’s 2014
Evening of Excellence student art competition.
Education Foundation Executive Director Susan Scott welcomes new board member Louis DeCongelio.
Four retiring board members were honored for
their service, including Ronald Karp, Michael Longworth, Fred Strammer, and
of 2013-2014 accomplishments:
The Education Foundation is on course
to invest $1.2 million in technology, literacy, student awards, teacher
recognition and other programs by June 30.
Texcellence has delivered recycled computers,
training and tech support to more than 7,000 students in need since the project
began in April 2007.
The installation of 30 new Education
Foundation Digital Learning Labs is underway at local youth-serving
agencies and Sarasota County Libraries. These Labs provide a safe, secure
environment for students who otherwise do not have access to computers,
educational software and skills training they need to succeed in the classroom
– and in life.
At the 2014 Regional Science, Engineering and Technology Fair, 822 students from 49 public, private and home schools
submitted 657 individual and team projects to the regional competition.
Two overall winners represented Sarasota County at the Intel International Fair
in Los Angeles in May 2014, all expenses paid by the Education Foundation
through the generous support of our sponsors, including The Dart Foundation and
Academic Olympics had an all-time
record number of students participating this year, representing 10 area high
schools – public, charter and private. For the first time, the Most
Valuable Player from each of the 10 teams was honored with a $250 award at the
Finals Tournament on March 29.
The 19th annual Evening
of Excellence student art competition raised awareness about the impact of
the arts on learning and raised more than $290,000 in one night. The
“Evening in Paris” volunteer committee was led by co-chairs Taylor Collins and
As of this year, we have invested over
$250,000 in Literacy for Life training and materials for struggling
readers in high schools. Funding was made possible by the State of
Florida through the Consortium of Florida Education Foundations and The Koski
Foundation. The impact has been dramatic
– 10th grade FCAT writing scores have increased significantly.
Also, this year we awarded a record
number of Classroom Grants to Sarasota County’s most creative and
entrepreneurial teachers for projects they design to reach every student in
their classrooms. Teachers received $348,156
through our Edge of Excellence and Exploration Grants programs to provide high
quality enrichment and experiential learning opportunities for students during
the 2013-2014 school year.
The Teacher of the Year program
honored top teachers throughout the district. Taylor Ranch Elementary
science teacher Lisa Figueroa captured the top honors. The three finalists won thousands of dollars
in cash awards and prizes from Education Foundation sponsors, and Figueroa will
represent the district at the state competition this July.
In addition, to mark the 25th Anniversary of the
Education Foundation, founder Shirley Ritchey presented $250 awards to the
principals of Sarasota High, Venice Middle and Taylor Ranch Elementary in honor
of the three Teacher of the Year finalists. The 25th
Anniversary Committee also presented School Board of Sarasota County Chairwoman
Jane Goodwin with a plaque honoring Teachers of the Year since 1970.
That plaque is now mounted at the entrance of the Sarasota County
School Board Chambers.
Thank you for your support!
Why Support Digital Learning Labs in
donation will provide a safe and supportive after-school environment for
children to improve reading and math skills, while gaining valuable computer literacy skills at
places like Alta Vista Elementary, North Port Library, Boys & Girls Clubs,
Beyond the Spectrum and the Sarasota Housing Authority.
But don't take our word for it...
Community Celebrates 2014 Regional Science Fair Award Winners
Finalists Courtney Astore, Rebecca Elsishans head to Intel Fair in May
Mote Marine’s Dr. Carl Luer, Rebecca Elsishans, Courtney Astore and Science Fair Director Brad Porinchak at the closing of the 2014 Science Fair Awards on April 10. Elsishans and Astore will go on to the Intel International Science Fair in Los Angeles from May 11-16, all expenses paid by the Education Foundation of Sarasota County.
Sarasota, Florida – April 11, 2014 – Last night, an audience of over 300 family members, educators and donors honored the area’s most promising young scientists, engineers and inventors with monetary awards, other prizes, and – for two top-scoring high school students – a chance to compete in the international arena at the 25th annual Regional Science, Engineering and Technology Fair Awards.
John Scalzi, ABC 7 television meteorologist, served as master of ceremonies at the annual awards ceremony, held for the first time at Sarasota County Technical Institute’s Conference Center.
“You all carry with you the eternal question of ‘why,’ and it will keep you young,” Scalzi promised the honorees. Superintendent Lori White, school board members, district leaders and fair sponsors joined him to congratulate the 56 students from grades 3-12 whose projects scored at the top in 21 research categories this year.
Susan Scott, executive director of the Education Foundation of Sarasota County, presented first place awards in each category in elementary (grades 3-5), middle (grades 6-8) and high school (grades 9-12). Students took home more than $12,500 in cash gifts and additional special prizes for exceptional achievement.
The fair’s major sponsors presented scholarships to six outstanding high school participants. The two overall winners, Cardinal Mooney’s Courtney Astore and Sarasota High’s Rebecca Elsishans, will represent Sarasota County next month at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, all expenses paid by the Education Foundation. Read More....
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PINE VIEW VICTORIOUS AT 2014 ACADEMIC OLYMPICS FINALS TOURNAMENT
MVP Awards Honor Top Players From Ten Teams
Sarasota, Florida – April 9, 2014 – Fans and families were on the edges of their seats during the final two matches of the Education Foundation’s Academic Olympics season on the last Saturday in March. Teams were neck-in-neck all the way, with the lead switching back and forth all afternoon.
In the last minutes of the Championship Game, perennial rivals Pine View and Riverview were tied 100-100 going into the third of three rounds.
But the Pine View Pythons scored big with answers to the final Team Questions and went on to claim the “Culture Vulture” trophy with a final score of 194-156.
The action kicked off at 9 a.m. in the School Board Chambers at The Landings. Riverview’s Rams bested the Sarasota High Sailors 209-129 in the first match of the day. The morning’s other match featured Pine View vs. Venice High’s spirited Indians, with the Pythons victorious at 201-105. After lunch, Sarasota played Venice for third place honors in one of the closest matches of the entire season. In the end, the Sailors edged out the Indians in a nail-biter, 132-124.
Nine weeks of round robin competition were held January–March, featuring top players from ten area high schools, culminated in the intellectual “final four” on March 29.
For the first time in the program’s history, the Most Valuable Player from each of the ten participating high school teams were honored. Each MVP received a $250 award from the Education Foundation of Sarasota County.
The 2014 MVPs from each school were Booker High’s Sarah Bell; Cardinal Mooney’s Nick Etz; Imagine School at North Port’s Michael DeHay; North Port High’s Nick Sawyer; Pine View’s Thomas Chaffee; Riverview High’s Turner Means; Sarasota High’s Nathaniel Folkins; Sarasota Military Academy’s Alex Bardenhagan; Suncoast Polytechnical High’s Erik Palm; and Venice High’s Patrizio Murdocca. Read More...