Dr. Updegraff is a native of Tampa Bay, Florida. He cherishes his hometown, and embraces all the ways he can serve and give back to his community – both inside and outside of Updegraff Vision.

These are just a few of the organizations Dr. Updegraff has recently supported.

After donating to a walk-a-thon at Cross Bayou Elementary School in Pinellas Park, Florida, Dr. Updegraff received this letter from one the participating students. Click to read the note.

Pediatric Cancer Foundation
The Pediatric Cancer Foundation is committed to raising money to fund pediatric cancer research, and Dr. Updegraff has supported it in many capacities throughout the past decade. This year, he was a sponsor for Fashion Funds the Cure, a fashion show that uses pediatric cancer patients as its models, and which raises money for the Pediatric Cancer Foundation.

Canterbury School of Florida
Dr. Updegraff believes education is one of the core tenets needed to build a strong community, so he has made numerous donations to schools throughout his career. In 2006, for example, he contributed the lead gift to establish a marine studies program at the Canterbury School of Florida.

St. Petersburg Free Clinic
The St. Petersburg Free Clinic provides local residents in need with medical care, food, and shelter. This organization is particularly meaningful to Dr. Updegraff, because he has been supporting it in various capacities since his childhood. Most recently, Dr. Updegraff was one of the sponsors for the 2011 Battle of the Minds, a charity fundraiser put on to benefit the St. Petersburg Free Clinic.

American Heart Association
The Tampa Bay Heart Ball raises money for the American Heart Association through sponsorships and donations to a silent auction. In 2011, Dr. Updegraff donated a LASIK procedure to the auction.

Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Softball Team
Dr. Updegraff has been a proud sponsor of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office softball team for more than five years now. Through his support of it, he is able to show his gratitude in one small way to those who serve and protect his hometown.

Brookwood provides abused, at-risk, and otherwise troubled adolescent girls with an alternative living situation. There, they receive counseling and an education, and learn skills that will make them employable and prepared to live on their own. Dr. Updegraff has supported Brookwood a number of times over the past decade; this year, he is a sponsor for one of their fundraising events.

CASA (Community Action Stops Abuse)
CASA’s mission is “to raise our voices against violence through advocacy, empowerment, and social change,” and it is an organization that shelters and supports victims of domestic abuse. Dr. Updegraff has supported CASA in numerous ways over the past decade, including sponsoring events it hosts.

Susan G. Komen for the Cure
Susan G. Komen for the Cure is one of the largest organizations supporting breast cancer prevention, treatment, and research in the United States. In addition to his personal support of Komen, Dr. Updegraff has also successfully encouraged many Updegraff Vision staff members to become involved with the organization – for instance, he has sponsored several Updegraff Vision teams that participated in Race for the Cure.

Eckerd College
Eckerd College, located in St. Petersburg, Florida, is Dr. Updegraff’s undergraduate alma mater. Since graduating, he has given back to the school in a number of ways, including multiple donations he has given over many years. In recognition of his contributions to the school as well as to the greater St. Petersburg community, Eckerd nominated Dr. Updegraff to the Dean’s Council on Science, a position he has held since September 2009.

Additional organizations Dr. Updegraff has supported include:

  • Abilities Foundation
  • All Children’s Hospital
  • Alzheimer’s Association
  • American Stroke Association
  • Bolesta Center
  • Boy Scouts of America
  • Clearwater Marine Aquarium
  • Eyecare America
  • Florida Orchestra
  • Madeira Beach Triathalon
  • McCallie School
  • PARC
  • Prevent Blindness Florida
  • St. Anthony’s Hospital
  • St. Petersburg Chamber of Commerce
  • Tampa Bay Watch