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Board Member Spotlight: Amanda Horne

Co-Founder, Dive Into Reading/Marketing, Oysters Rock Hospitality

Overseeing Marketing & Community Relations for the Oysters Rock Hospitality, Amanda Horne is the co-founder of Dive Into Reading, a national award-winning summer reading program that is a collaboration among the Anna Maria Oyster Bars, School District of Manatee County, Suncoast Campaign for Grade Level Reading and Manatee County Libraries.

At the Oyster Bars, Amanda works alongside her husband CEO John Horne, encouraging inclusivity in our community through family-friendly, affordable dining. She has spent her career championing for access to educational opportunities, including her years spent as Communications Coordinator at The Women’s Resource Center, which strives to educate and empower women of all generations.

Amanda’s passion for education at all stages of life has deep roots, having served PACE Center for Girls – Manatee for years on the Board of Directors, including two terms as Chair. Along with her husband, John, she also helped pioneer a scholarship fund for adults returning to higher education at State College of Florida, USF Sarasota-Bradenton and Manatee Technical College through the Horne & Moon Scholarship Social. She is a graduate of Leadership Florida’s Education Class IV (Transf4mers), which has provided myriad networking and educational opportunities.

What do you think is the most pressing need in Manatee County?
Education is the foundation for a successful future and a thriving community. My passion is Dive Into Reading, a program we started to address the summer slide in Title I elementary schools and Pace Center for Girls.

What initially drew you to become involved with the Manatee Community Foundation?
I wanted to be a part of the non-partisan, collaborative effort in our community to identify issues, help our community address them, and educate donors as to their needs.

Favorite hobby and why?
Cooking with wine! Because it usually involves friends and family, and it fills my heart to be surrounded by those I love.

What’s the most interesting or unique skill or talent you possess that others might not know about?
Hmmm…this is a tough one… probably that I trained as a hotel manager and worked in the most bombed hotel in the world at the time – the Europa Hotel in Belfast, Northern Ireland! My poor mother!

What advice would you give to individuals who are interested in getting involved with philanthropy or serving on a nonprofit board?
Serve on a committee first to make sure you love the organization. If you join a board, do it wholeheartedly; otherwise, you will not feel the benefits. It matters that you attend board meetings. Go with your heart.

What’s your favorite inspirational quote or motto that guides you in your personal and professional life?
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” -Anne Frank