Shawn is a proud, life-long St. Petersburg resident, born and raised and loves his city so much that he has dedicated the last 15 years of his career to serving youth through St. Petersburg’s TASCO Teen Programs. Shawn made the decision to forgo many opportunities in the private sector and really try to make an impact on the ground level and focus on the teenage youth in our community.
He has worked his way up through the ranks and now oversee all of TASCO Teen Programs which provides value-based programming and activities for middle and high-school youth where over 50,000 youth are served annually. Shawn currently has an Associate’s Degree from St. Petersburg College and a Bachelor’s Degree from The University of South Florida both in Business Administration. Recently blessed with the title of ‘father’ after the birth of his beautiful baby boy Daniel Joseph, who was named in honor of his best friend, a fallen officer, Shawn’s zeal and passion to serve our youth has taken on a new perspective. When not at work or home with the family, he is most likely watching sports but rarely discloses his favorite teams because they all hail form the New England area. He also loves to travel to new cities and countries and is currently on a mission to watch a game in all 30 MLB Stadiums… 20 out of 30 stadiums is his current count…
Shawn says: “People always say you will never work a day in your life if you love what you do. If that’s the case then I work very few days a year.”
Ben, an experienced manager and leader, is passionate about making an impact in the lives of youth.
He has lived in St Petersburg for more than 20 years, graduated from Lakewood High School and is currently a manager at PDQ.
Ben Says: “I’m always willing to lend a helping hand, I’ve had many opportunities and now it’s time to give back.”
Kent Channer, CPA
With over 25 years experience in finance and accounting, Kent is focused on making an impact in our communities.
With sons of his own, Kent is excited about the opportunity 1st Downs 4 Life presents to empower and inspire youth.
Kent says: “Every organization should have an expert accountant!”
With over 25 years’ experience caring for others, Queen brings valuable experience and expertise to serving our community. As a Nursing Assistant she had the opportunity to a variety of people at many different stages and the “know how” when it comes to making valuable connections with others.
Currently, as a Commercial Care/ Sales Manager she has the ability to bring leadership and organizational skills that will strategically assist 1st Downs 4 Life.
Queen has volunteered with a few local youth organizations, she currently mentors students with the Pinellas County School Board and has served on the board of the Pinellas County Head Start.
Queen says: I’m so thankful and blessed that I can be a part of a unique and amazing family and lend my expertise to make a great impact
Michael, a native of St. Petersburg, is always seeking to conquer tough challenges, align with or create something unique, and get people excited. After graduating from Gibbs High School’s BETA (Business, Economic and Technology Academy), he started his Bachelor of Arts in Business Marketing. During that time, he temporarily concluded that pursuit to receive his Associate in Science from St. Petersburg College in Funeral Services in 2010. As a licensed funeral director he has been serving the families of Tampa Bay for the past five years.
In 2005, just a few months before founder, Louis Murphy Jr., Michael became the first Eagle Scout from their Troop 223, based at their home church, and has since strived to increase his involvement in community and civic service throughout Tampa Bay Communities with past and present involvement that includes St. Petersburg Young Professionals committee member, co-chair of community outreach committee for EMERGE Tampa Bay Young Professionals, one of 40 Tampa Bay Business Journal’s Up & Comers in 2013, St. Petersburg College CEO Entrepreneurship Club member, a Practitioner Volunteer with Pinellas County Sherriff’s Office, director of generationRESTORED Young Adults, member The Rotary Club of St. Petersburg, FL’s Rotary in Action and membership committee. In October 2015, Michael achieved one of the highest honors as a professional and obtained his Certified Funeral Service Practitioner (CFSP) designation from the Academy of Professional Funeral Service Practice further exemplifying his dedication to life-long career learning. Although relatively new to nonprofit work, Michael continues to promote the efforts and mission of 1st Downs 4 Life and increasing the affect throughout Tampa Bay.
Michael is currently pursuing his Bachelors of Applied Science in Management, Organizational Leadership, and Entrepreneurship at St. Petersburg College. He is a Deacon at Mt. Zion Progressive MB Church and lives in southeast St. Pete with his wife, Ashley, and their baby boy, Michael III.
Michael says: “As a motivated leader, I’m passionate about the success of an organization and believe my experience, abilities and accomplishments will aid in this execution. “