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Nowhere is the spirit of innovation more evident than in the Florida High Tech Corridor.

A 23-county region spanning from Florida’s Sun Coast to Space Coast, The Corridor is a place where research and innovation thrive. Chaired by presidents of the University of Central Florida (UCF), the University of South Florida (USF) and the University of Florida (UF), the Florida High Tech Corridor Council drives progress in the region.

History

In 1996, a small team of the area’s leaders recognized the need for a more comprehensive proposal to secure the future expansion of a semiconductor plant in Orlando. To offset funding offered by its competitors, they engaged UCF and USF to develop a package that would facilitate research partnerships benefiting the company and industry over the next decade. The team’s success led to the founding of the Florida High Tech Corridor Council (initially the “I-4 High Tech Corridor Council”) and the creation of a model for its Matching Grants Research Program, which would grow through the years to generate more than $1 billion in economic impact.

Dr. John Hitt, who was president of UCF at the time, played a key role in The Corridor Council’s formation. Pointing at a nighttime satellite image of the lights along Florida’s I-4 corridor, he predicted the region (which already housed more than half of the state’s population) would continue to grow.

He was right.

Leadership

Recognized by numerous scientific and economic development organizations for its achievements, The Corridor Council exists to help partners realize their role in the broader scope of regional economic development, foster mutually beneficial relationships to solve problems and address community needs, and celebrate success when these partnerships prove fruitful.

Chaired by presidents of UCF, USF and UF, The Corridor Council also includes representatives from the region’s 14 state and community colleges and nearly two dozen representatives of high tech industry. Council members describe their relationship as a competitive partnership in which each must “leave their ego and their logo at the door.”

A career economic developer, President Ed Schons leads daily operations and is supported by a team of program managers and key contacts on each university campus who manage research, workforce and entrepreneurial initiatives.

Council Co-Chairs

Council Members

 

Council Members Emeritus

 

A regional economic development initiative of: