What is CEOs in Schools?

Each year more than 150 Tampa Bay area CEOs volunteer an entire day at Hillsborough County public elementary schools. CEOs see, hear and do the things that our public school educators and students experience every day, and gain a new perspective on the role of schools in preparing students for success in the future workforce.

A Hillsborough Education Foundation and Vistra Communications initiative, in partnership with Hillsborough County Public Schools, CEOs in Schools serves to connect business leaders with the workforce of the future. As an initiative under Vistra’s One Day of Change program, CEOs in Schools is a catalyst for big advances that are possible from just one day of change.

CEOs in Schools provides benefits for schools, students, CEOs and the community. Students benefit from meeting positive role models and seeing professionals show an interest in them. CEOs learn about the challenges and opportunities in public schools that are preparing the future workforce. These new relationships between CEOs and principals can result in solutions that make our entire community better. The results are limitless.

One Day Can Make a Difference
CEOs can make an impact in the lives of students and the community.

What’s the story behind this?

Vistra Communications has a long-standing relationship with Mort Elementary School. CEO Brian Butler’s commitment to learning about the school and providing support in every way possible, prompted him to spend an entire day with former principal, Woodland Johnson. He performed a wide range of duties: teaching, planning, serving lunch and much more. Vistra’s relationship with Mort Elementary continues to grow. Today, Brian and the entire Vistra team regularly volunteer, host student leaders at the company headquarters, sponsor teacher appreciation events, and support other school initiatives. The first-hand experience provided Brian with insight into ways our community can help lift our public schools to a higher level— inspiring him to challenge fellow CEOs to get involved and spend a day in our Hillsborough County public schools.

The innovative idea grew into this unique program in 2019, and the following year Vistra partnered with Hillsborough Education Foundation to lead CEOs in Schools into the future. HEF CEO Anna Corman says it is a privilege to be part of this impactful initiative to help strengthen public education in Hillsborough County. “Our schools are shaping tomorrow’s community members, future workforce and leaders. We have a vested interest in their success.”

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