Building Philanthropy to Build a Better Florida

Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation Leaders Among Florida 500 Honorees

September 27, 2018

Florida Trend magazine recently released its first “Florida 500” list, naming Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation Chairman, Rick Walsh, and President and CEO, David A. Odahowski among Florida's 500 most influential executives. The list was the result of a thorough yearlong research initiative, identifying individuals that make significant contributions to their communities and help shape the state of Florida.

As President and CEO of Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation, Odahowski has been a vital asset to the Foundation for more than 28 years, serving as President and CEO of the organization since 1993. Odahowski’s demonstrated devotion to leadership and philanthropy has significantly shaped the community. In addition to his role as President, CEO, and Board Member of the Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation, Odahowski is one of the founders of the Florida Philanthropic Network, and an adviser to the Edyth Bush Institute for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership (EBI) at Rollins College. Under Odahowski’s leadership, Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation established EBI at the Crummer Graduate School of Business where nearly 4,000 professionals and volunteers annually receive training and certification in the governance and management of nonprofit organizations—ensuring future generations continue to make a lasting impact.

“Florida is currently experiencing a great transference of wealth. Business men and women have prospered here and will play an even greater role in shaping our community with their involvement and philanthropic spirit,” said Odahowski. “Establishing a category just for philanthropy and non-profits, ‘Florida 500’ recognizes the major role the philanthropy sector plays in the future of Florida. With $18 billion in assets and $2 billion distributed each year, our culture of giving is a significant economic driver.” 

Walsh has served on the Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation Board for the past 10 years, and is a renowned business leader and philanthropist. His extensive experience includes more than two decades with Darden Restaurants where he was part of the senior leadership team that took the company public in 1995. Walsh is currently the Chairman and CEO of the Knob Hill Companies, a media, investment, and strategic consulting firm. He has been a member of notable boards including General Mills, the Florida State Chamber, Nemours Children’s Hospitals, OneBlood, and UCF Board of Trustees, among others. 

 “As a longtime Central Floridian, it’s been an absolute privilege to watch the philanthropic community grow over the years, and work with inspiring organizations, such as the Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation,” said Walsh. “Our best work is helping nonprofits be better managed, governed, and led.”

For more information on the Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation, please visit www.edythbush.org.

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