The Tampa Bay Lightning honored Joe Clark as the 12th Lightning Community Hero this season during the Tampa Bay Lightning versus the Minnesota Wild. Clark received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program. He will donate to Eckerd Connects/Youth Alternatives, Computer Mentors Group, Portico and The Wells Inc. (Built Bikes). Through this evening’s game, in total, the Lightning Foundation has granted $19 million to more than 750 different nonprofits in the Greater Tampa Bay area.
has selflessly dedicated his time over the past 40 years serving on community
boards, advisory boards and task forces throughout Hillsborough, Pasco and
Pinellas Counties. As Eckerd Foundation President, Clark worked to provide
foster care and educational support to youth in the juvenile justice system.
Under his leadership, the Eckerd Family Foundation invested $100-million
promoting systemic change in areas of juvenile justice in the community,
including helping at-risk youth successfully transition into adulthood. The
foundation granted millions of dollars in grants to 660 nonprofits that aid in
supporting at-risk children and their families. In addition, Clark volunteers
more than 60 hours a month serving as Board member of the Tampa Hillsborough
Homeless Initiative, Eckerd Connects and the Community Advisory Board of the
Junior League of Tampa.
his work with the Eckerd Family Foundation, Clark has influenced other
philanthropic families and funders, including the Florida Philanthropy network,
the Youth Transitions Funders group and Campaign for Youth Justice. Clark also
initiated a program in the Vocational and Career Education Centers as an effort
to increase graduation rates in Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties. The program
provides work clothes, tools and monetary support to students who chose to
attend a community college.
becomes the 380th Lightning Community Hero since Jeff and Penny
Vinik introduced the Lightning Community Hero program in 2011-12 with a $10
million, five-season commitment to the Tampa Bay community. During the summer
of 2016, the Vinik’s announced that the community hero program will give away
another $10-million over the next five seasons.
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