Gov. Rick Scott welcomed about 200 people to the Governor's Mansion tonight to announce the winners of the 2011 Black History Month contests and recognize Jacksonville's Marsha Hatcher as the featured artist. Hatcher's work is being featured this month in the Capitol.
"I was never featured as an artist," Scott joked to Hatcher. "I was just focused on not being broke."
Scott helped award three teachers Excellence in Education awards, which bring a $1,500 check and a $250 gift certificate for educational materials. The winners were Starr Woods of Deltona High in Volusia County; Michael Bradley of Pasco Middle School and Lois Henderson of Pasadena Fundamental Elementary School in Pinellas County.
Scott also posed for pictures with six winners of an essay contest. The winners of a four-year college scholarship from Florida Prepaid College Foundation were Lily Sweet King, Florida State University Elementary, Leon County; Kenan Parker, Pinewood Acres Elementary School, Miami-Dade; Isaiah Gonzalez, Meigs Middle, Okaloosa; Gabrielle Marvez, Western Pines Middle, Palm Beach County; Alexander Tasi, Lakewood High, Pinellas; Candace Daymond, James S. Rickards High, Leon.
Two art contest winners were also given $250 gift cards: Ali Bandele, Bonneville Elementary, Orange; and Lee Royal Hampton V, Gilchrist Elementary, Leon.
"All of us have the opportunity to make history. Everybody in this room," Scott said. "And if we all do the right thing, in eight years when we have Black History Month we will have a lot more things to talk about, a lot more things we can be proud about. It's all up to each of us. There is no limit on what each of us can accomplish."