n December, cadets from Sarasota Military Academy (SMA), a local, public charter school, received an opportunity from a donor, Ms. Phyllis Siskel, to earn $50,000. Siskel, a long-time supporter of SMA, announced plans to match all contributions to the Academy up to $25,000. However, when $41,000 was collected, Siskel decided to match the additional funds for a total of $82,000 raised.
When Siskel brought this unique opportunity to raise $50,000 with her $25,000 match, SMA staff and cadets began raising awareness through social media and email campaigns. The original goal of matching Siskel’s donation was achieved before the end of 2019, and as the goal was quickly surpassed, Siskel responded with an update to her original match.
“Being involved with Sarasota Military Academy has been an incredible blessing, and I’m proud of the impact this Academy has in our community,” said Phyllis Siskel. “It is so important that we give back to organizations we believe in. Whether it is time or money, find a cause that you believe is worth supporting and do your best to help them succeed. My hope through this gift is to teach others about giving, while supporting the wonderful staff and cadets at SMA.”
“A woman of gold always leaves a trail of glitter; Ms. Siskel shines of all colors, especially gold!” said cadet Ghermyia Anderson, a sophomore at Sarasota Military Academy.
Throughout her involvement with SMA, Siskel has donated her time and energy, along with generous funds, to the Academy’s high school and Prep middle school campuses. Her donations have assisted in providing classroom materials, opportunities for extracurricular activities, cafeteria equipment, and more, and she is known to staff and cadets for serving lunch in the cafeteria and assisting around the school.
“We are incredibly grateful to Ms. Phyllis and her endless, constant support of our Academy, our mission, our team and our cadets. This match is such an extraordinary way for us to raise funds and awareness, and we owe her a debt of gratitude for her generosity,” said SMA-COL Christina Bowman, Sarasota Military Executive Director of Schools. “As a local, public charter school, we are not funded in the same way as ‘traditional’ public schools, through the school board, so we rely on unique funding and community support to help us continue to grow and impact our cadets and staff. Thank you, Ms. Siskel!”
To learn more, and to contribute to this campaign, visit https://www.sarasotamilitaryacademy.org/support-us/annual-fund.
PHOTO ID: Phyllis Siskel, SMA Donor & Volunteer
About Sarasota Military Academy
Founded in 2002, Sarasota Military Academy (SMA) is a public charter school, college preparatory academy and an accredited IB Diploma and Middle Years Programme (MYP) School with two campuses located in Sarasota, Florida. Combining extraordinary academics with the highest military principles of camaraderie, focus, leadership, integrity, compassion, poise, honor and respect, SMA’s mission is to graduate young men and women who will confidently define their personal and unique goals for success in a multi-cultural and globalized world. Sarasota Military Academy High School is located at 801 N. Orange Avenue and Sarasota Military Academy Prep Middle School, is located at 3101 Bethel Lane. To learn more about SMA, visit http://www.sarasotamilitaryacademy.org/.