Thursday, May 18, 2017
Ann Hamilton maintains a longstanding connection with the University of South Florida, a branch of which was established in the 1980s due in part to the efforts of her father. Supportive of higher educational opportunities for students regionwide, Ann Hamilton has served on Florida Gulf Coast University’s board of trustees and is active with the Uncommon Friends Foundation in Ft. Myers, Florida.
Established in the early 1990s, the latter nonprofit has a mission to build and promote character among local business leaders and area youth. With a dual focus on ethics in the workplace and character education, the organization also works to ensure preservation of the historic Burroughs Home, which houses the James Newton Archives.
The Foundation takes direct inspiration from the author Jim Newton, whose motto was, “the best is yet to be!” The organization celebrates individuals such as Charles Lindbergh, Thomas Edison, Harvey Firestone, and Henry Ford, all of whom exhibited a combination of courage and pragmatism during the 20th century. Uncommon Friends also bestows annual recognition on current community leaders who embody these characteristics. These awards include a Business Ethics Award, a Champion Teacher of the Year, and the Newton Student Chair in Leadership scholarship.