Governor Scott and Lt. Governor Carroll Commemorate Black History Month, Honor Student and Teacher Contest Winners

FEB 24 2011; Tallahassee, Fla. To celebrate Black History Month, Governor Rick Scott, First Lady Ann Scott, and Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll will host a reception this evening celebrating the contributions of African-American community leaders, educators, and students at the Governor’s Mansion. Governor Scott will announce the winners of the 2011 Black History Month contests, including the Excellence in Education Award, and recognize Jacksonville artist Marsha Hatcher as the featured artist. Harry C. Alford, President, CEO, and co-founder of the National Black Chamber of Conference, will be the guest speaker.

“Black History Month is a great opportunity to educate Floridians about the achievements of African-American leaders throughout our state’s history,” Governor Scott said. “The cultural contributions to our state and country continue to leave a lasting legacy of strength, determination and pride.”

Featured artist Marsha Hatcher is a founding member of the Jacksonville Consortium of African American Artists. Throughout February, her work is being displayed at the Capitol.

The Governor will honor three outstanding African-American educators with the Excellence in Education Award. These individuals were nominated by students and peers, and each will receive an award check for $1,500 and a $250 gift certificate for educational materials.

Excellence in Education award winners are:

  • Starr Woods – Deltona High School in Volusia County, Exceptional Student Education Core Teacher.
  • Michael Bradley – Pasco Middle School in Pasco County, Technology Teacher.
  • Lois Henderson – Pasadena Fundamental Elementary School in Pinellas County, teaches all standard elementary school subjects.

Six student essay-contest winners will also be honored by the Governor. Winners of the essay contest will receive a four-year college plan scholarship from Florida Prepaid College Foundation and a $50.00 gift certificate for educational materials.

Student essay-contest winners are:

  • Lily Sweet King – Florida State University Elementary School, Leon County – 5th grade.
  • Kenan Parker – Pinewood Acres Elementary School, Miami-Dade County – 5th grade.
  • Isaiah Gonzalez – Meigs Middle School, Okaloosa County – 6th grade.
  • Gabrielle Marvez – Western Pines Middle School, Palm Beach County – 7th grade.
  • Alexander Tasi ­– Lakewood High School, Pinellas County – 12th grade.
  • Candace Daymond – James S. Rickards High School, Leon County – 12th grade.

Two art-contest winners will also be recognized. The art contest winners will receive a $250 gift card.

Student art-contest winners are:

  • Ali Bandele – Bonneville Elementary School, Orange County – 1st grade.
  • Lee Royal Hampton V – Gilchrist Elementary School, Leon County – 3rd grade.

The Black History Month reception is supported by Signature sponsor Florida Prepaid College Foundation and Supporting sponsor Prudential. Additional sponsors include AT&T, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, Publix Super Markets Inc, Wachovia – A Wells Fargo Company, Coca-Cola Refreshments, Florida A&M University, and in-kind sponsor Scholastic Inc.


The Black History Month Celebration is a partnership between the Executive Office of the Governor, Florida’s Foundation, the Florida Department of Education, the Florida Department of State and the Governor’s Mansion Foundation. For more information on Florida’s celebration of Black History Month, please visit

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