Category Archives for Donor Corner

UnitedHealthcare celebrates season of giving with record-setting contribution to Step Up For Students

By SHELBY HOBBS, Special to Step Up For Students

NAPLES, Fla. – In this season of giving, UnitedHealthcare announced Dec. 4 a record-breaking contribution of $15 million to Step Up For Students, the nonprofit that helps administer the needs-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program.

Nicholas Zaffiris, CEO of UnitedHealthcare South Florida, shares a message of giving hope through supporting community programs, particularly Step Up For Students, a nonprofit organization that helps administer the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship for lower-income K-12 Florida schoolchildren. Zaffiris announced a $15 contribution to the organization for the 2017-18 schoolyear at an event at Naples Adventist Christian School on Dec. 4.

Nicholas Zaffiris, CEO of UnitedHealthcare South Florida, shares a message of giving hope through supporting community programs, particularly Step Up For Students, a nonprofit organization that helps administer the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship for lower-income K-12 Florida schoolchildren. 

Step Up For Students celebrated the support and contributions of UnitedHealthcare during an event at Naples Adventist Christian School. Since 2009, UnitedHealthcare has contributed more than $88 million to Step Up For Students, providing scholarships for nearly 17,000 students across Florida to attend either an out-of-district public school or private school that best suits their academic needs.

“UnitedHealthcare is proud to partner with Step Up For Students and support this impressive organization which invests in the future of our children,” said Nicholas Zaffiris, CEO of UnitedHealthcare of South Florida. “Especially during the holiday season, it’s important to support programs in our communities that help others. Step Up provides hope for Florida’s children to access a quality education that best fits their needs, and we are glad to support such a worthy initiative.”

Step Up For Students, the nonprofit organization that helps administer the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, is providing opportunities for nearly 105,000 lower-income students across Florida this school year with 441 residing in Collier County

“None of this would be possible without the support of the community and contributions of organizations like UnitedHealthcare,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “I’m just so pleased to know that together with our partners we are making such an important difference in our state by giving students the educational opportunities they deserve.”

At the event, Audrey Wainwright, principal at Naples Adventist Christian School, shared her support for the Step Up organization and thanked UnitedHealthcare for its ongoing commitment to the program. She encouraged other companies to consider participation.

UnitedHealthcare announced a $15 million contribution to Step Up For Students at an event at Naples Adventist Christian School. Pictured (back row center) are Step Up For Students President Doug Tuthil and UnitedHealthcare CEO South Florida Nicholas Zaffiris, along with students from Naples Adventist Christian School.

“I have seen first-hand the benefits of this scholarship program,” Wainwright said. “So many of our students have made tremendous improvements with the help of Step Up For Students, leading to a better future for themselves and our state.”

Scholarship parent Onetia Lansiquot, who spoke at the event, said the scholarship has allowed her to provide her daughter, Leilah, a second-grader at Naples Adventist, with strong academics in a comfortable, secure environment.

“Without Step Up For Students, Leilah would likely be going to a charter or public school,” Lansiquot said before thanking UnitedHealthcare. “I’m sure her progress would be OK, but being in a private school, she gets that extra attention, that extra little push, ensuring that her educational needs are met. You are truly changing lives by investing in the future of our children’s education, and my family is so grateful.”

 

 

 

 

Florida Farm Bureau Group helps Florida families with $500,000 donation to Step Up For Students Scholarship Program

By PAUL SOOST

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The Florida Farm Bureau Group, a multi-line Florida based property and casualty insurance company, announced Nov. 8 it is donating $500,000 to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program.

The donation will fund about 76 K-12 scholarships in the 2017-18 school year. 

“At Florida Farm Bureau Group, helping families is what we do best. We are thrilled to partner with Step Up For Students to help deserving Florida schoolchildren reach for their educational dreams,” said Florida Farm Bureau Chief Executive Officer, Steve Murray. “We hope these students reach high, and we look forward to a long relationship with Step Up For Students.”

This is Florida Farm Bureau Group’s first donation to Step Up For Students, a nonprofit that helps administer the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program for financially disadvantaged Florida school children. The program is funded with tax-credited donations and allows parents and schoolchildren to choose between a K-12 scholarship that helps with private school tuition and fees, or one that assists with transportation costs to out-of-county public schools.

“Thanks to the generosity of our donors, Step Up For Students is helping Florida families customize their children’s educational opportunities,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “On behalf of our Step Up families, we thank Florida Farm Bureau Group for its commitment and generosity.”

For the 2017-18 school year, Step Up For Students is serving more than 100,000 students throughout Florida with tuition scholarships valued at up to $6,343 per student for K through fifth grade, $6,631 for sixth through eighth grade and $6,920 for ninth through 12th grade. More than 1,700 private schools participate in the scholarship program statewide.

Paul Soost can be reached at psoost@sufs.org.

 

 

Summit Bank supports educational success through $100,000 contribution to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program

By PAUL SOOST

PANAMA CITY, FL – Summit Bank, N.A., a regional provider of personalized, concierge-style financial services, announced Oct. 26 a $100,000 contribution to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program, funding 15 scholarships for the 2017-18 school year in Bay County, Escambia County and Okaloosa County.

Summit Bank executives visited Saint John Catholic School in Panama City to present Step Up For Students with a contribution to the Tax Credit Scholarship Program. Summit Bank is contributing a total of $100,000 to provide scholarships for the 2017-18 school year in Bay, Escambia and Okaloosa counties. Pictured are (kneeling) Andy Stein, Summit Bank President & CEO, (standing left to right) Jeff Dibenedictis, Summit Bank Senior Vice President, Commercial Relationship Manager, Barbara Haag, Summit Bank Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer, Jim Looker, Summit Bank Executive Vice President/Chief Lending Officer, Dr. Vicki Parks, Saint John Catholic School Principal, Renae Sweeney, Step Up For Students Development Director, and Frank Hall, Summit Bank Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer. They are joined by a few students benefiting from the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program.

This marks the fourth year Summit Bank has supported the scholarship program. Since joining Step Up as a corporate partner in 2014, the company has contributed a total of $450,000, the equivalent of 77 scholarships.

“Summit Bank is committed to making a difference in our local communities and is excited to provide the opportunity for 15 families to find the right learning environment for their child through the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program,” said President and CEO Andy Stein. “We hope this support helps propel these students towards educational success and bright futures.”

Step Up For Students is a nonprofit that administers the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program for financially disadvantaged Florida schoolchildren. The program is funded by corporations with tax-credited donations and allows parents and students to choose between a K-12 scholarship to support private school tuition and fees, or one that assists with transportation costs to out-of-county public schools.

“We are grateful that Summit Bank joins us in our mission to impact the poverty cycle by providing educational options for lower-income Florida families,” said Step Up For Students President Doug Tuthill. “On behalf of Step Up and the students participating in our program, we thank Summit Bank for their generosity.”

For the 2017-18 school year, Step Up For Students is serving more than 100,000 students throughout Florida with tuition scholarships valued at up $6,343 per student for K-5th grade, $6,631 for 6th-8th grade and $6,920 for 9th-12th grade. More than 1,700 private schools participate in the scholarship program statewide. In Bay, Escambia and Okaloosa counties this school year, 43 schools are participating in the program which will benefit more than 2,475 students.

Reach Paul Soost at psoost@sufs.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step Up For Students honors insurance industry, Tower Hill for generous contributions

By SHELBY HOBBS, Special to Step Up For Student

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. – Florida insurance companies have been protecting more than just Floridians’ homes this hurricane season, as they have made generous contributions to Step Up For Students, the nonprofit that helps administer the needs-based Florida Tax Credit (FTC) Scholarship Program.

Don Matz, president of Tower Hill Insurance, center, receives a thank you from the fourth grade class at Calvary Christian Academy. Several of the students are recipients of the Step Up For Students scholarship. They are joined by CCA Headmaster Dr. Aaron Gonzalez.

Tower Hill Insurance, a significant contributor from the insurance industry, and Step Up For Students hosted an event Oct. 25 at Calvary Christian Academy in Ormond Beach to celebrate the insurance company’s contributions and the work Step Up continues to do for Florida’s lower-income families. Since 2011, Tower Hill has contributed over $3 million to Step Up For Students, providing scholarships to more than 600 of Florida’s most underprivileged students who are given access to a private school or financial assistance for transportation to attend an out-of-district public school. 

“By investing in the future of our students, we are investing in the future of Florida,” said Don Matz, president of Tower Hill. “One of our top priorities at Tower Hill is to give back to our community as much as we can, and we choose to start with these deserving students.”

Calvary Christian Academy fourth grader Mia Rauseo shares her story with her classmates at an event honoring Tower Hill Insurance. Tower Hill has contributed over $3 million since 2011 to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program, providing more than 600 scholarships to Florida’s most underprivileged students. Mia is able to attend Calvary Christian Academy with the help of a Step Up scholarship.

Calvary Christian Academy fourth grader Mia Rauseo shares her story with her classmates at an event honoring Tower Hill Insurance. Mia is able to attend Calvary Christian Academy with the help of a Step Up scholarship.

Step Up For Students provides opportunities to nearly 105,000 lower-income students across Florida this school year with 3,213 scholars in Volusia County.  

“We are so grateful for Tower Hill’s investment in our program and the children who depend on it,”  said Joe Pfountz, CFO of Step Up For Students. “The company’s generosity is crucial to the work our team does and shows just how much they really care about Florida’s kids and its future.”

The typical scholarship student comes from a single-parent household where the average income is $25,353. A recent study found that students who receive these scholarships for at least four years are 40 percent more likely to attend college than their public school counterparts, and 29 percent more likely to earn an associate degree.

During the event, Step Up For Students fourth-grade scholar Mia Rauseo shared her experience.

“I am so happy to be given the chance to come here,” said Rauseo. “And I know it would not have been possible without the help of Step Up For Students and companies like Tower Hill Insurance. I am doing well in my classes and I truly enjoy coming to school.”

 

 

Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company announces $2 million contribution to Step Up For Students

By PAUL SOOST

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Step Up For Students  announced Oct. 12 a $2 million contribution to the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program from Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company (UPCIC), a wholly owned subsidiary of Universal Insurance Holdings, Inc.

The $2 million donation will fund 305 K-12 scholarships for the 2017-18 school year so lower-income children can attend the school that best meets their learning needs. This is the first time that UPCIC has partnered with Step Up For Students, which is funded by corporations with tax-credited donations.

Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company (UPCIC) presents Step Up For Students with a $2 million check at an event at Abundant Life Christian Academy in Margate. Pictured from UPCIC are COO Steve Donaghy, VP of Marketing Stacey Tomko, Dan Marino, spokesperson, NFL Hall of Famer and former Miami Dolphins quarterback, and VP of National Marketing David Ahern, Step Up For Students CFO Joe Pfountz, Abundant Life Christian Academy Principal Stacy Angier and several Step Up scholars.

“We are grateful for corporate donors like Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company who are helping us provide Florida schoolchildren with an education that will serve not only themselves, but also positively impact our communities in the future,” said Joe Pfountz, chief financial officer of Step Up For Students. “Without our donors help, we would not be able to continue to grow the scholarship program.”

The donation was announced by Steve Donaghy, chief operating officer for UPCIC, at an event hosted by Abundant Life Christian Academy in Margate, Florida. Abundant Life Christian Academy is one of more than 1,700 schools that participate in the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program statewide.

Dan Marino, UPCIC spokesperson, National Football League hall of famer and former Miami Dolphins quarterback made a special appearance at Abundant Life Christian Academy and spoke to the schoolchildren.

“Having options and choice in where you go to school is important and I’m excited to see so many students here today who have access to the learning environment that best suits their individual needs,” said Marino. “We know that the education you receive will help propel you to do great things.”

Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company (UPCIC) presents Step Up For Students with a $2 million check at an event at Abundant Life Christian Academy in Margate. Pictured (from left to right) are UPCIC COO Steve Donaghy, UPCIC VP of Marketing Stacey Tomko, Step Up For Students CFO Joe Pfountz, UPCIC Spokesperson, NFL Hall of Famer and former Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino, and UPCIC VP of National Marketing David Ahern.

Universal Property & Casualty Insurance Company (UPCIC) presents Step Up For Students with a $2 million check at an event at Abundant Life Christian Academy in Margate. Pictured (from left to right) are UPCIC COO Steve Donaghy, UPCIC VP of Marketing Stacey Tomko, Step Up For Students CFO Joe Pfountz, UPCIC Spokesperson, NFL Hall of Famer and former Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino, and UPCIC VP of National Marketing David Ahern.

Step Up For Students helps administer the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, which allows recipients to choose between a scholarship that helps with private school tuition and fees, or one that assists with transportation costs to out-of-county public schools.

For the 2017-18 school year, Step Up For Students is serving more than 105,000 students throughout Florida with tuition scholarships valued at up to $6,343 per student for K through fifth grade, $6,631 for sixth through eighth grade and $6,920 for ninth through 12th grade. More than 1,700 private schools participate in the scholarship program statewide. In Broward County this school year, more than 150 schools participate in the program with more than 8,900 students benefiting.

 

 

 

Tower Hill Honors Hispanic Heritage month with record-setting contribution to Step Up For Students

By SHELBY HOBBS, Special to Step Up For Students

TAMPA, Fla. – Step Up For Students and Tower Hill Insurance Group joined together Oct. 10 at Florida College Academy to celebrate the insurance company’s record-setting contribution to the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program  (FTC) during National Hispanic Heritage month.

Don Matz, CEO of Tower Hill Insurance, told students at Florida College Academy in Temple Terrace that he is proud to support Step Up scholars.

Since 2011, Tower Hill has contributed more than $3 million to Step Up For Students, providing scholarships to more than 600 of Florida’s underprivileged students who are given access to a private school or financial assistance to attend an out-of-district public school.

“During a time when we recognize the prominent role the Hispanic community has played in building this great nation, I am proud that Tower Hill is working to fund hundreds of scholarships in order to help serve more students,” said Don Matz, CEO of Tower Hill. “It has been a pleasure meeting with so many brilliant, caring students this morning.”

Step Up For Students, the nonprofit organization that helps administer the income-based FTC scholarship program, provides opportunities to nearly 105,000 students across Florida this school year. Roughly 38 percent of students statewide are Hispanic, and the typical scholarship student comes from a single-parent household where the average income is $25,353.

In Hillsborough County, 40 percent of the 4,850 students benefiting from the program are Hispanic. Step Up For Students praised Tower Hill’s generosity, which has been crucial to fueling the growth of the program.

Step Up For Students President Doug Tuthill told the crowd at Florida College Academy that Step Up couldn’t help children without the assistance of companies like Tower Hill Insurance.

“The impressive level of support from Florida’s insurance industry is critical to advancing our mission of providing educational options to underprivileged children across the state,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “Tower Hill’s contribution is an investment in students and allows them to access the education that best meets their individual learning needs.”

Families and students that have benefited from the FTC scholarship program spoke out in support, urging other leading companies to consider participation. Florida College Academy, located in Temple Terrace, has 258 students in pre-K through eighth grade, approximately 50 percent of whom are Step Up scholars.

Students from Florida College Academy (FCA) from center left to right pose with Step Up President Doug Tuthill, Tower Hill CEO Don Matz and FCA principal Lynn Wade.

“As both a teacher at Florida College Academy and a parent of two scholarship students, I have witnessed first-hand the overwhelming transformation this program has made in the lives of its recipients,” said Stephanie Meier, mother to third- and fourth-grade scholarship students. “I hope that all interested families who qualify for this program are granted the same opportunity that my family has been privileged to experience.”

A recent study of the program found that FTC scholarship students are significantly more likely to attend college and receive a degree. The study compared FTC students to a comparable set of Florida public school students, assessing college enrollment, persistence, and attainment rates. The widely reported study found that students who are on the FTC scholarship program for four or more years are 40 percent more likely than their public school counterparts to attend college and 29 percent more likely to earn an associate degree.

 

 

Insurance industry leaders provide record-setting contributions to Step Up For Students

By SHELBY HOBBS, Special to Step Up For Students

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Florida’s insurance industry has stepped up to support the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program at a record level, committing $61.2 million this year to fund scholarships for more than 9,380 students. Leading the pack is UnitedHealthcare, which has contributed more than $83 million to Step Up For Students over the past decade.

UnitedHealthcare CEO Greg Reidy on Oct. 4  visited Arlington Community Academy in  Jacksonville, to meet scholars his company has helped attend the school, and to promote the program’s impact and encourage other insurance companies to participate.

UnitedHealthcare CEO Greg Reidy on Oct. 4 visited Arlington Community Academy in Jacksonville, where students are among the beneficiaries of the scholarships, to promote the program’s impact and encourage other insurance companies to participate.

“By helping struggling students get into an educational environment where they can succeed, we know we are helping to make our state stronger,” said Reidy. “It’s gratifying to meet the students who are benefiting from these scholarships and see them on a track to reach their full potential.”

Arlington Community Academy students, who received the tax credit scholarship through Step Up For Students, enjoyed the event with UnitedHealthCare.

Step Up For Students, the nonprofit organization that helps administer the needs-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, praised the insurance company’s historic support for the program. Step Up  provides scholarships for lower-income students to attend the schools that best meet their individual needs.  A recent study found that students who receive these scholarships for at least four years are 40 percent more likely to attend college than their public school counterparts, and 29 percent more likely to earn an associate degree.

Since 2009, UnitedHealthcare’s contributions have enabled more than 18,000 Florida students to attend schools that offer them a chance at a brighter future. The company’s recent contribution will help serve the 7,483 students who receive the scholarships in Duval County alone.

Tamara Herring, whose daughter Tori is a second-grader at Arlington Community Academy, thanked donors for giving her child a chance at a better future.

“Support from Florida’s insurance industry is critical for the work our team does to support children across the state,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “This contribution is an investment in students, and it enables the positive impacts of this program to continue and expand to change more lives for the better.”

Families and students who have benefited from the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program added their voices  in support of the insurance industry’s efforts, urging other companies to consider participation.

“This program directly helps children in our local area, and I am grateful that my own children can now attend the school that’s right for them,” said Tamara Herring, whose daughter Tori is a second-grader are Arlington Community Academy. “I am so grateful for the many donors who support this program, individuals and companies that are helping children like mine have a better future. Every child deserves that chance.”

 

 

 

SKECHERS steps in to help disadvantaged Florida schoolchildren with Step Up For Students scholarships

By PAUL SOOST

CLEARWATER, Fla. – SKECHERS USA, Inc., a global leader in the performance and lifestyle footwear industry, today announced a $210,000 contribution to the Step Up For Students scholarship program.

This is the second year that SKECHERS, headquartered in Manhatten Beach, California, has supported the program and their contribution will fund scholarships for 32 Florida students in the 2017-18 school year.

“SKECHERS is proud to participate in Florida’s Step Up For Students program for the second consecutive year,” said Michael Greenberg, president of SKECHERS. “This essential state program complements ongoing efforts at SKECHERS to help kids around the globe, including our charitable BOBS footwear collection and the annual SKECHERS Pier-to-Pier Friendship Walk in Manhattan Beach, CA that supports kids with special needs, and education.”

Through the BOBS from Skechers program, SKECHERS has donated new shoes to more than 14 million kids affected by poverty, homelessness and disasters in the United States and more than 30 countries worldwide.

Step Up For Students helps manage the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, which provides K-12 grade scholarships to qualified lower-income families throughout Florida. The tax credit program was created by the Florida Legislature in 2001 and is funded by corporations that receive a dollar-for-dollar tax credit for their contributions. The program allows recipients to choose between a scholarship to help with private school tuition and fees, or a transportation scholarship to assist with transportation costs to an out-of-district public school.

“We are grateful to SKECHERS for its support of our mission to ensure Florida students have access to learning environments that suit their individual needs through educational choice,” said Doug Tuthill, Step Up For Students president. “On behalf of Step Up and the tens of thousands of families we serve, we thank SKECHERS for their commitment to our Florida communities.”

For the 2017-18 school year, Step Up For Students is serving more than 100,000 students throughout Florida with tuition scholarships valued at up to $6,343 per student for grades K-5, $6,631 for six to eight and $6,920 for grades nine to 12. More than 1,700 private schools participate in the scholarship program statewide.

Paul Soost can be reached at psoost@sufs.org.

 

 

 

Dairyland Auto® and Dairyland Cycle® increase contribution five-fold to Step Up For Students to $500,000 for the 2017-18 school year

By PAUL SOOST

Dairyland Auto® and Dairyland Cycle® today announced a $500,000 contribution to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program –  five times the amount they donated for the 2016-17 school year.

“We are proud to support Florida families through our participation in the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program. We are pleased to be increasing our contribution five-fold this year so that we can benefit more students statewide,” said Pete Anhalt, president of Dairyland Insurance Company. “We look forward to seeing the future achievements of these students.”

This marks the second year that Dairyland Insurance Company, a member of the Sentry Insurance Group of companies, has supported the scholarship program. This year’s contribution will fund more than 75 scholarships in the 2017-18 school year. Since joining Step Up as a corporate partner in 2016, the company has contributed $600,000, the equivalent of 93 scholarships.

Step Up For Students helps administer the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, which allows recipients to choose between a scholarship that helps with private school tuition and fees, or one that assists with transportation costs to out-of-county public schools.

“On behalf of Step Up and the families we serve, we thank Dairyland Auto and Dairyland Cycle for their continued support,” said Doug Tuthill, president of Step Up For Students. “Without our donors help, we would not be able to continue to grow the scholarship program. Because of them, more Florida schoolchildren will be able to attend the school that best meets their learning needs.”

For the 2017-18 school year, Step Up For Students is serving more than 100,000 students throughout Florida with tuition scholarships valued at up to $6,343 per student for K-5th grade, $6,631 for 6th-8th grade and $6,920 for 9th-12th grade. More than 1,700 private schools participate in the scholarship program statewide.

Dairyland Auto and Dairyland Cycle President Pete Anhalt (left), along with GreatFlorida Insurance Founder and CEO Ike Peerbhai (right), present Step Up For Students Development Officer David Bryant (center) with a $500,000 check which will provide more than 75 K-12th grade scholarships for the 2017-18 school year. GreatFlorida, one of Dairyland’s largest writers of policies, has 109 locations throughout Florida.

 

About Step Up For Students

Step Up For Students is a nonprofit organization that helps manage the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program. Students who qualify for the national free or reduced-price lunch, or those who are homeless or in foster or out-of-home care, may qualify. The scholarship provides tuition assistance to the private school of their parents’ choice or financial assistance to offset the transportation cost to an out-of-district public school. Since 2001, Step Up has awarded more than 680,000 scholarships.

Step Up also helps administer state-funded Gardiner Scholarship for Florida students with certain special needs. With the Gardiner Scholarship, recipients may use the funds for a variety of approved services including private tutoring, occupational therapy, instructional materials and other services.

For more information, visit:www.StepUpForStudents.org.

About Dairyland Auto® and Dairyland Cycle®

Dairyland provides affordable rates on auto insurance and motorcycle insurance, with multiple coverage options, money-saving discounts, and experienced customer service to help meet your needs. For more information, visit www.dairylandinsurance.com.

Dairyland Auto® and Dairyland Cycle® property and casualty coverages are underwritten by a member of the Sentry Insurance Group, Stevens Point, WI. For a complete listing of companies, visit DairylandInsurance.com. In Texas, coverages are underwritten by Dairyland County Mutual Insurance Company of Texas, Austin, TX. In California, coverages are underwritten by Viking Insurance Company of Wisconsin, Stevens Point, WI. Policies, coverages, benefits, and discounts are not available in all states. Savings based upon all available discounts. See your policy for complete coverage details.

 

AutoNation Celebrates $3 Million Contribution to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program with a School Supplies Drive

By PAUL SOOST

AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE: AN), America’s largest automotive retailer, announced Tuesday a $3 million contribution to Step Up For Students. The funding will provide as many as 459 K-12 scholarships for the 2017-18 school year, allowing lower-income children in Broward and Miami-Dade Counties to attend the school that best meets their learning needs.

This is the second year that AutoNation has partnered with Step Up For Students, bringing its total to $6 million in support.

AutoNation presented Step Up For Students with a $3 million check on August 8, 2017. The contribution will provide scholarships for lower-income school children in Broward and Miami-Dade Counties to be able to attend the K-12 participating school of their choice. (From left to right) Step Up scholarship recipient Raelyn Binns, AutoNation Corporate Communications Senior Manager Lisa Ryan, AutoNation Senior Director, Tax Patricia Dengler, AutoNation Vice President, Tax Beth Fergus, Step Up For Students Chief Operating Officer Anne White, Step Up For Students Development Officer III Renae Sweeney, AutoNation Tax Manager Jonathan Lavoie, AutoNation Manager of Public Affairs and Communications Paula Levenson and Step Up scholarship recipient Ranaya Binns.

In celebration of the scholarship contribution, AutoNation associates collected backpacks filled with school supplies. The backpacks were presented to Kelly Lonstein, Headmistress of Fort Lauderdale Preparatory School, a participating school in the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program. More than 50 percent of the students attending Fort Lauderdale Preparatory School are recipients of the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship, which is managed by Step Up For Students.   

Recently selected by Forbes Magazine as one of America’s “100 Best Corporate Citizens”, AutoNation takes great pride in supporting initiatives that focus on the well-being of their communities.   “We are gratified to know that our investment in Florida’s youth through Step Up For Students will help hundreds of deserving children reach their academic goals,” said Cheryl Miller, AutoNation’s Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President.      

AutoNation Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Marc Cannon presents Step Up scholars Raelyn Binns (left) and Ranaya Binns (right) from Fort Lauderdale Preparatory School with back packs and school supplies. In addition to donating $3 million to the Step Up For Students Scholarship Program, AutoNation team members also collected school supplies and back packs to donate to Fort Lauderdale Preparatory School.

Step Up For Students helps administer the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, which provides scholarships to qualified lower-income families throughout Florida. Scholarships are funded by corporations that receive a dollar-for-dollar tax credit for their contributions. The program allows recipients to choose between a scholarship to help with private school tuition and fees, or a transportation scholarship to attend an out-of-district public school.  

“We are thrilled that corporate partners like AutoNation continue to support Step Up For Students and their commitment to making a difference in the community,” said Anne White, Step Up For Students chief operating officer. “Thanks to their generosity, more Florida families will have options for their children.” 

For the 2017-18 school year, Step Up For Students will serve more than 102,000 students throughout Florida with tuition scholarships valued at an average of $6,330 per student. More than 1,700 private schools participate in the scholarship program statewide.

About AutoNation, Inc.

AutoNation, America’s largest automotive retailer, through its bold leadership, innovation and its comprehensive brand extensions, is transforming the automotive industry. As of June 30, 2017, AutoNation owned and operated 364 new vehicle franchises from coast to coast. AutoNation has sold over 11 million vehicles, the first automotive retailer to reach this milestone. AutoNation’s success is driven by a commitment to delivering a peerless experience through customer-focused sales and service processes. Through its Drive Pink initiative, AutoNation is committed to drive out cancer, create awareness and support critical research. AutoNation continues to be a proud supporter of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and other cancer-related charities. 

Please visit investors.autonation.com, www.autonation.com, www.autonationdrive.com, www.twitter.com/autonation, www.twitter.com/CEOMikeJackson, www.facebook.com/autonation, and www.facebook.com/CEOMikeJackson, where AutoNation discloses additional information about the Company, its business, and its results of operations.

About Step Up For Students

Step Up For Students is a nonprofit organization that helps manage the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program. Students who qualify for the national free or reduced-price lunch program, or those who are homeless or in foster or out-of-home care, may qualify. The scholarship program provides tuition assistance to the private school of their parents’ choice or financial assistance to offset the transportation cost to an out-of-district public school. Since 2001, Step Up has awarded nearly 580,000 scholarships.

Step Up also helps administer the state-funded Gardiner Scholarship Program for Florida students with certain special needs. With the Gardiner Scholarship, recipients may use the funds for a variety of approved services including private tutoring, occupational therapy, instructional materials and other services.

For more information, visit:www.StepUpForStudents.org.

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