In 1981, two firefighters and one police officer were killed in Hillsborough County, Florida, in the line of duty, leaving behind widows and dependent children. George M. Steinbrenner, principal owner of the New York Yankees, organized a group of concerned, civic minded citizens to insure that that families of these and subsequent fallen heroes in Hillsborough County receive early financial assistance and are guaranteed funds toward a college education. In 1989, through another personal donation, George expanded the foundation’s coverage to include Pinellas County. Citrus County joined by a contribution through the U.S. Family Foundation. Businessman Melvin Draft donated funds for Pasco County and Les and Pam Muma contributed for Polk County’s involvement. Hernando County, Marion County and MacDill AFB Law Enforcement and Firefighting personnel are also under the Gold Shield umbrella. Currently 7 nearby Florida counties are covered.
At the 38th Annual Luncheon, GT Shareholder Gregory Kehoe will receive the Philip A. McNiff Community Service Award.