Children First Announces 60th Anniversary Co-Chairs and Committee

March 15, 2021

A girl in a playground tunnel with her head poking out and smiling
A baby in an orange shirt crawling

Children First, the exclusive provider of Head Start and Early Head Start services for Sarasota County, is pleased to announce its 60th Anniversary Co-Chairs and Committee members in recognition of the agency’s historic milestone of six decades of service to the community.

The 60th Anniversary Co-Chairs and Committee members are comprised of past and present board members, volunteers, and supporters who have dedicated themselves to celebrating and supporting Children First throughout the year. The Committee members will serve as agency ambassadors in elevating the visibility of and engagement with the Children First mission, including raising critical funds in support of comprehensive services for pregnant women, children and families living at-risk.

“It is an honor to celebrate such a momentous occasion alongside our Co-Chairs, Committee members, and the greater community as we work together to help make new dreams possible every day. For the past six decades, we have been providing high-quality education and family strengthening services for our community’s most vulnerable children and families. We know the growth of the entire family creates a beautiful garden that will continue to blossom with hope, opportunity, and success for generations to come.” says CEO Philip Tavill.

Co-Chairs include: Tom Cail, Lisa and John Giglio, Teresa and Trevor Harvey, Stephanie and Allen Hochfelder, Lisa and Jeff Jackson, Carol and Richard Kalikow, Andrée and Mike Keebaugh, Katherine and Frank Martucci, Elenor Maxheim, Dr. Jacque and Lacy Ray, Jo and Stan Rutstein, and Gaye and Jack Schwarz. This esteemed group of Co-Chairs will lead the 60th Anniversary celebrations at Children First throughout 2021.

Committee members as of March 12 include: Sally & Bill Altman, Phyllis & Hank Battie, Krystel & Matt Beall, Barbara Benson, Howard Berman, Ted Bogusz, Travis & Kathy Brown, Tom Cail, Nicole Christie, Norma & Al Cohen, Lynette Coney, Kathy & Tom Cook, Christina Davis, Vanessa Diaz-Petit, Heriberto Enriquez, Dawn & Mitchell Epstein, Vivian Flewelling, Cher Gardner, Lisa & John Giglio, Faith & Michael Goldman, Teresa & Trevor Harvey, Dulce Hernandez, Rokira Hill, Stephanie & Allen Hochfelder, Johnny Hunter, Sr., Johnny Hunter, Jr., Maggie Hutter, Lisa & Jeff Jackson, Beth Jacobson, Amanda & John Johnson, Keith & Adrienne Johnson, Ollie Johnson, Leslie & Alan Jones, Gina & Bill Jordan, Carol & Richard Kalikow, Andrée & Mike Keebaugh, Janna & Josh Kim, Samantha Kingsley, John Knowles, Lisa Krouse, Darliny Lantigua, Julie & Brock Leach, Jessica Leon, Joan & Bart Levenson, Rebecca Lieberher, Alison & Howard Madsen, Phil Mancini, Katherine & Frank Martucci, Elenor Maxheim, Barbara & Bob McClure, Adilene Mejia-Aparicio, Deborah & Dick Miller, Linda Monda & John Mabardi, Keith Monda & Veronica Brady, Eugenia Murray-McGinnis, Paula Murray, Bobbie Mullen, Joy Norwood, Vanessa & Maurice Opstal, Katrina & Matt Otchet, Cheri & Justin Pachota, Donna & Mike Pachota, Renee Phinney, Peter & Joanne Powers, Keli Pufahl, Dr. Jacque & Lacy Ray, Lashonda Riley, Leslie & Dick Rivera, Jessica Rogers, Jackie & Jim Rolfes, Jo & Stan Rutstein, Cindy Salomone & Al Cenci, Susan & Rohn Schaefer, Gaye & Jack Schwarz, Robin & David Shapiro, Maggie & Mark Sharff, Alyssa Simons, Karen Solem, Maria Somera, Elizabeth Stamoulis, Michelle Stears, Nora & Joe Stephan, Lavender & Michael Suarez, Kathleen Sullivan, Joyce & Fred Tavill, Philip Tavill, Asa Thomas, Maria Valdivia, Henriette van Eck, Linda Watterworth, Megan Wenger, Lin & Bob Williams, and Ethna & Ted Wishnie.

The agency has also launched an initiative called ’60 for 60’ to recognize the collective volunteer effort from the community led by businesses, partners, individuals, and groups that has created six decades of success and service in support of Children First.

“In 1961, the Junior League of Sarasota founded the Sarasota Day Nursery for families in need with a mission to prepare young children for Kindergarten. Sixty years later, I am deeply grateful to be a part of celebrating this achievement as a Co-Chair, current Board Chair of Children First, and Junior League Sustainer,” says Board Chair and Classroom Volunteer Katherine Martucci.