TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Lightning honored Gus and Frances Stavros as the fourth Lightning Community Hero of the year this afternoon at the Pinellas Education Foundation, located in Largo. The Stavros', who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will donate the money to Pinellas Education Foundation.
The Stavros' used their passion for education and children to create the Pinellas Education Foundation and as a result, Enterprise Village, the student-learning experience for fifth-graders, a free-enterprise system that has been adopted for students nationwide. Through the Foundation, they also established programs and scholarships for high school drop-outs in Pinellas County and Finance Park, a national program that teaches eighth-grade students about personal finance. The husband and wife of 64 years have awarded more than $18 million to educational causes and fundraised an additional $20 million.
Gus Stavros' was the son of immigrant parents, becoming a decorated war hero after World War II and met his future wife that shared his same integrity and intelligence. They've worked hard to achieve success and have given it all back to the next generation pursuing the American dream. Their passion for children and education led to the creation of Enterprise Village, Finance Park, the Pinellas Education Foundation, as well as the distribution of scholarships for college and adult technical education and much more. Frances also started the SAVE scholarship program to get students back in school to learn a trade.