THE WASDINS: Driving Force For Brevard Philanthropy

By  //  October 13, 2013

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2013 Central Florida Humanitarians

ABOVE VIDEO: Tom and Susie Wasdin not only support local nonprofits with gifts exceeding $100,000 annually, but they also give freely of their time and considerable energy to dozens of local and national organizations.

“It is a privilege and honor to give back to the community that helped us so much.”

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – If there’s a fundraiser going on for a worthy charity, chances are excellent that Susie and Tom Wasdin are part of it.

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The Wasdins not only support local nonprofits with gifts exceeding $100,000 annually, but they also give freely of their time and considerable energy to dozens of local and national organizations.

“We have been blessed in our lives and Brevard County has given us a lot,” said Tom Wasdin.

“It is a privilege and honor to give back to the community that helped us so much.”

The Wasdins not only support local nonprofits with gifts exceeding $100,000 annually, but they also give freely of their time and considerable energy to dozens of local and national organizations.

RECORD-SETTING COACH

Tom Wasdin first arrived in Brevard in 1964, when he took a job as coach at Cocoa Beach High School.

He left the area for a few years to coach at Jacksonville University, where he led the basketball team to the NCAA Championship game. His team still holds the record at Madison Square Garden for the most points scored by a college team.

Tom Wasdin first arrived in Brevard in 1964, when he took a job as coach at Cocoa Beach High School. (SpaceCoastDaily.com image)

Tom Wasdin first arrived in Brevard in 1964, when he took a job as coach at Cocoa Beach High School.

His coaching years were followed by a highly successful career in real estate and development.

Wasdin’s stint at Cocoa Beach High School lasted long enough for him to meet the love of his life, Susie, 1967 homecoming queen and sister to Vern, Wasdin’s basketball team captain.

PATRONS OF MANY ORGANIZATIONS

More than three decades later, their partnership still flourishes both in business and in charitable endeavors.

Tom and Susie Wasdin have been the driving force for fundraisers for many organizations, including the Central Brevard Humane Society. Above, Susie interviews Cocoa Beach Mayor Dave Netterstrom during the “Tuxes & Tails” Gala which raises funds to improve the shelter accommodations for all the animals. (Image for SpaceCoastDaily.com)

Tom and Susie Wasdin have been the driving force for fundraisers for many organizations, including the Central Brevard Humane Society. Above, Susie interviews Cocoa Beach Mayor Dave Netterstrom during the “Tuxes & Tails” Gala which raises funds to improve the shelter accommodations for all the animals. (Image for SpaceCoastDaily.com)

In the past three years alone, the couple have given of their time, talent and treasure to the Civil Military Council Foundation, Honor America, KLD Kids, We Care 2, United Way of Brevard, Florida Tech, Cocoa Mainstreet, Sally’s Friends, Eckerd Youth Foundation, Melbourne Alumna Scholarship Fund, Space Coast Marine Institute, Brevard Symphony Orchestra, Brevard Museum of History and Science, Crosswinds Youth Services, Brevard County FAMUAA, Health First Foundation, Brevard Neighborhood Development Coalition, Satellite Beach Cheerleaders, Susan G. Komen for the Cause, People to People, Brevard Walk of Fame, Rotary Club of Cocoa, Florida Today’s Reaching Out Holiday Fund, The Haven, American Cancer Society, Extreme Cheer and Dance, Space Coast Early Intervention Center, Space Coast Sports Promotion, Canine Companions for Independence, Eastern Florida State College, Brevard Rescue Mission and the Women’s Center.

CHAMPIONS OF EDUCATION, MEDICINE

Susie’s volunteers works includes many years of service on the board at the King Center for the Performing Arts, the Brevard Cultural Alliance, Wuesthoff Hospital Foundation and Cocoa Village Playhouse.

Tom Wasdin has served as chairman of the Florida Sports Foundation and as past president of the Brevard Community College Foundation. (Images for SpaceCoastDaily.com)

Tom Wasdin has served as chairman of the Florida Sports Foundation and as past president of the Brevard Community College Foundation. (Images for SpaceCoastDaily.com)

She was the driving force for successful fundraisers for the Central Brevard Humane Society and the Wasdins endowed the first faculty chair at Brevard Community College, now Eastern Florida State College.

Tom Wasdin, 2002 Florida Today’s Citizen of the Year, has served as chairman of the Florida Sports Foundation and as past president of the Brevard Community College Foundation.

Tom Wasdin’s stint at Cocoa Beach High School lasted long enough for him to meet the love of his life, Susie, 1967 Cocoa Beach High homecoming queen and sister to Vern, Wasdin’s basketball team captain. (SpaceCoastDaily.com image)

Tom Wasdin’s stint at Cocoa Beach High School lasted long enough for him to meet the love of his life, Susie, 1967 Cocoa Beach High homecoming queen and sister to Vern, Wasdin’s basketball team captain. (SpaceCoastDaily.com image)

He has been involved in many capacities with most Brevard organizations that promote commerce and tourism, including being chairman of the Brevard County Tourist Development Council.

The Cocoa couple also staunchly support the Trigeminal Neuralgia Association, establishing funding for facial pain research initiative to find a cure for trigeminal neuralgia in conjunction with the McKnight Brain Institute.

Tom Wasdin knows from personal experience the suffering of individuals with this neuropathic disorder, which is characterized by episodes of intense pain in the face.

ABOUT THE 2013 CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIAN AWARDS

CFHA-SPONSORS-200-1The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards were created to recognize outstanding individuals and organizations that dedicate their Time, Talent or Treasure to help people in need locally – and around the world. 

This year, more than 30 deserving humanitarians will be honored during the Gala, which will be held Thursday, Nov. 7 at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, with the festivities beginning at 6 p.m.

“Over the years, our editorial team has had the distinct honor and pleasure of identifying and featuring the many members of our community who give back so much and are dedicated to reaching out and helping others, here and throughout the world, in a multitude of ways,” said Maverick Multimedia Editor-In-Chief Dr. Jim Palermo.

All Humanitarian alumni are presented a specially commissioned medallion.

“We remain firmly committed to identifying and telling those stories and providing a timely media platform to recognize Space Coast and Central Florida residents’ altruistic contributions on a regular basis in our magazines, as well as SpaceCoastDaily.com,” said Dr. Palermo.

This inspiring and compelling event is sponsored by Brighthouse Networks, Health First, Brevard Physicians Network, Florida Pain, Forever Florida, MPAC ACO, Brevard Geriatrics, Community Credit Union, Clear Choice Health Care, Knudson Brain & Spine Law Injury Office, First Choice Medical Group, Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine, CentralFloridaMedicine.com and SpaceCoastDaily.com.

FOR MORE INFORMATION or to make a reservation to attend the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards Gala call 321-615-8111 or e-mail SpaceCoastMedicine@gmail.com.


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