Winners & Losers 2/2/17
The University of West Florida has announced a $1 million gift from Dr. Bob Kimball, UWF professor of marketing and economics, to create the Bill and Ellie Kimball Memorial Undergraduate Scholarship Award in memory of his parents. The gift will fund $2,000 merit-based scholarships for 40 UWF sophomores each year, beginning in 2017. The contribution marks Kimball’s third large gift to the institution, totaling $3 million. His first gifts went to establish and support a scholarship endowment fund for undergraduate students in the UWF College of Business.
The Santa Rosa Education Foundation Teacher of the Year Selection Committee has announced Kristen White as the Santa Rosa Teacher of the Year 2018. White is a graduate of the University of West Florida and has taught Kindergarten, STEAM Lab, and Reading Intervention during her 11 years at East Milton Elementary.
The Global Corner
On Jan. 24, The Global Corner reached a significant milestone. While visiting Ensley Elementary School with their Passport to China, this non-profit organization taught first and second graders and lifted the number of “virtual adventures” provided to more than 60,000. The Global Corner is celebrating its 10th year. Each year, it has focused on a different country and brought it to life in local elementary schools.
Last week, the registered agent and co-founder of Pensacon, Ben Galecki, was convicted by federal jury in Norfolk, Va. on charges relating to a $21 million conspiracy involving the manufacture and distribution of a synthetic drug known as spice. He faces up to 79 years in prison. The announcement came a week after Mayor Ashton Hayward announced the Pensacola International Airport was renewing its partnership with the event. Galecki also faces federal charges in Nevada and Alabama.
The social media network has been the political communication venue of choice for President Donald Trump. Now Gov. Rick Scott has found it an effective means of influence. Port Everglades and Port of Palm Beach announced last week they would not sign any formal economic-development paperwork with a Cuban delegation that was visiting the state. The announcements followed Scott’s tweets expressing opposition to such deals and threatening future funding cuts for port operators doing business with Cuba.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is about $17 million short of the projected legal bill for the state’s lawsuit against Georgia over the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River system. Since the lawsuit was filed in 2013, Florida has spent $61 million for private law firms, $11 million for expert witnesses and consultants, and $32,000 for technology and travel expenses.