TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Lightning honored Patrick Sneed as the third Lightning Community Hero of the 2016-17 season during the first period of tonight's game versus the Florida Panthers. Sneed, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, will donate the money to Frameworks and Champions for Children.
For nearly 20 years, Sneed has dedicated his time and energy entirely to the cause of helping the children of Tampa live successful, safe and fulfilling lives. A key board member of the Tampa Heights Junior Civic Association, Sneed personally invests himself in each of the children's lives and makes it a personal mission to help them discover and live out their potential. Sneed and the rest of those involved with THJCA encourage Tampa-area children to play outside, experiment with new hobbies and sharpen their minds. With equipment for the children to use and a caring staff to guide them, THJCA provides a safe place for these children to be social and mature. Many afterschool arrangements can produce financial stress for parents, whereas THJCA accepts all families regardless of their income and makes the program accessible to everyone.
Sneed has gone above and beyond his responsibilities with THJCA to find sponsors, donations and fundraising opportunities to keep the program available to all who need it. Sneed takes his time to personally assure that these children are getting the help they need as they continue to grow. By day, Sneed helps with the renovation project that is constructing a recreation center for THJCA and by night he is on call for the families of Tampa Heights children. Sneed logs approximately 200 hours per month at THJCA and has also volunteered every weekend for the past seven years to get the recreation center sanctioned by the city and outfitted with electronics, kitchen equipment, and gardening materials for the children. To go along with his work at THJCA, Sneed also voluntarily represents Hillsborough Community College as a Student Ambassador.
Sneed becomes the 232nd 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. Through this evening's game, in total, the Lightning Foundation has granted $11.65 million to more than 300 different non-profits in the Greater Tampa Bay area.