Annual Report 2016 - Page 27

SARA ROBERTS Executive Director, 2012 - 2016 Polk Vision, Inc. Polk Vision is much more than a vision document or an alignment process, it is people power. The topics and issues we tackle not only make us uncomfortable, they are the issues that can uplift or bog down a society. This is hard work. However, with your commitment and that of so many more, Polk Vision is the catalyst for generational change. COLLEEN BURTON Founding Executive Director State Representative, District 40 Over thirteen years ago, volunteer community leaders from across Polk County met at United Way of Central Florida to discuss the results of a comprehensive countywide quality of life study. The results were troubling but the volunteers’ resolve was strong. They believed in order for Polk County’s quality of life to improve a coordinated countywide initiative was necessary. Today, Polk Vision continues to be the driving force behind important conversations across Polk. Thirteen years since its inception and twelve years since the first community roundtable, Polk Vision tackles countywide issues by systematically identifying issues affecting the lives of all Polk County residents and forging solutions-oriented partnerships. The key to Polk Vision’s success has always been the commitment of hundreds of volunteers who share a common “vision” of a brighter tomorrow for our county. Under consistently superb volunteer leadership, Polk Vision has deftly evolved, adapted to shifting community priorities, and embraced organizational change to ensure continued progress. As the Executive Director of Polk Vision during its first 8 ½ years, I was delighted to facilitate the Smart Communities Summit on June 10th and witness firsthand its continued impact. Congratulations, Polk Vision, on another successful year! PRESSING FORWARD The comprehensive and multi-faceted strategic plans created by Polk Vision LEAD Teams are designed to harness all of Polk County’s resources to achieve the overarching priority of improved community prosperity. 27