1. Pinellas

Hometown Pinellas

Event raises money for veterans at Bay Pines

St. Petersburg Elks Lodge 1224 recently raised $1,060 at an event for veterans. The Psychosocial Rehabilitation and Recovery Center unit of Bay Pines Hospital will receive $500, another $100 will be used to buy hats for the veterans, and $460 will be used to purchase and distribute canteen books for visiting veterans. The Veterans Canteen Service was created in 1946 to provide articles of merchandise and services at reasonable prices to veterans enrolled in the VA healthcare system, caregivers, and visitors.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay wins national recognition

For the first time in its 54-year history, the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay agency has been named a Pinnacle Award winner for 2018 by Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, the organization's highest honor. The award, announced by the Big Brothers Big Sisters Nationwide Leadership Council, recognizes the top local agencies for increasing their revenue and growing their overall number of Big & Little matches year-over-year for two or more consecutive years. In 2018, the Tampa Bay agency served a record 3,014 children, a 5.6 percent increase over 2017.

Tarpon Springs native serves aboard USS Portland

A Tarpon Springs native and 2016 Tarpon Springs High School graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Portland, one of the Navy's newest and most advanced amphibious ships. Seaman Apprentice Fredrick Gioffre is a cryptologic technician (technical) aboard the amphibious transport dock operating out of San Diego. He is responsible for shipboard missile defense.