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Gov. Ron DeSantis taps former Seminoles star Corey Simon to lead Volunteer Florida

South Florida native 'tailor-made for this organization,' governor says
Gov. Ron DeSantis and Corey Simon, Volunteer Florida CEO announcement
Posted at 9:07 AM, Dec 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-08 09:07:02-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The community outreach arm of the Sunshine State is saying goodbye to a Seminole and welcoming another to take his place.

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Monday that he has appointed former Florida State football star Corey Simon to serve as chief executive officer of Volunteer Florida.

He replaces Clay Ingram, who was a teammate of Simon's on Florida State's 1999 national championship team.

DeSantis praised Simon for his contributions to Florida, both on and off the field.

"His leadership and all he's done is tailor-made for this organization," DeSantis said in a recorded message alongside Simon. "This thing touches a lot of aspects in Florida, and I think you could really do a lot if you have someone like Corey, who really wants to make a difference."

Simon, who was born in Boynton Beach and played high school football in Pompano Beach, was a consensus All-American at defensive tackle for the Seminoles in the 1990s. He went on to become a first-round draft pick of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2000 and spent eight seasons in the NFL with the Eagles, Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans.

After retiring, Simon established Corey's Kids to mentor children in north Florida's foster care system.

Volunteer Florida touts itself as the state's lead agency in "fostering volunteerism and leveraging resources."

"I can't think of a better way to give back to my home state that has given me so much," Simon said.

Simon said Volunteer Florida's mission is "near and dear" to him.

DeSantis added that he's pretty sure Simon can "out-bench any of our agency heads."