TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Lightning honored Tom Touchton as the 20th Lightning Community Hero this season during the first period of tonight's game against the Florida Panthers. Touchton, who received a $50,000 donation from the Lightning Foundation and the Lightning Community Heroes program, presented by Jabil, will donate the money to the Tampa Bay History Center.
Touchton invested his own finances and many hours to lead the construction of the Tampa Bay History Center which is nestled right across from AMALIE Arena. It sits today as one of the Bay Area's premier cultural venues, giving visitors a chance to learn all about the region's history. More than 100,000 guests annually walk through the museum where they are treated to stunning galleries and exhibits chronicling Tampa Bay's rich history.
Over two decades, Touchton has worked tirelessly to foster the Center's success, gifting his personal collection of historical maps to create the Touchton Map Library. The map directory features the only cartographic education center in the Southeast. Thanks to Touchton's efforts, Tampa Bay's treasured legacy will stand the test of time.
Touchton becomes the 431st Lightning Community Heroes 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 tonight's game, in total, the Lightning Foundation has granted $22.5 million to more than 750 different nonprofits in the Greater Tampa Bay area. During the summer of 2016, the Viniks announced that the community hero program will give away another $10 million over the next five seasons.