Southern Heritage Financial Group Named Title Sponsor for Florida College
Impact Gala

September 4, 2023

Florida College is pleased to welcome Southern Heritage Financial Group as the 2023 Impact Gala Title Sponsor. Formerly the FC Leadership Dinner, this event showcases the impact Florida College and its students have in the community and around the world. Funds raised during the September 28 event will support student scholarships at FC.

Headquartered in Fayetteville, Tennessee, Southern Heritage Financial Group was founded in 2007 and provides retirement and insurance planning services to more than 800 households in 30 states, with a presence in the Tampa area. Company founder Jeff Mathis said he and his wife, Leah, feel passionately about supporting the school’s mission and the spiritual growth of students.

“Statistics show 50 percent of young people between the ages of 18 and 22 lose their faith, so we want to help students who desire this kind of supportive environment,” said Mathis.

As alumni and  longtime supporters of Florida College, Jeff and Leah have provided gifts and services including financial aid for students, and have passed their appreciation for the school to the next generation: Their two daughters and son-in-laws, Steven and Heather Ladd (2005), and Brandon (2009) and Hannah Nichols (2008), are alumni, and the couple anticipate their five grandchildren will follow in their footsteps. Mathis additionally serves as Director of Planned Giving at Florida College, and hopes the sponsorship will help promote the school, which he calls “a hidden jewel in the Tampa area.”

“As Leah and I have gotten older, we have deducted that life isn’t about accumulating things,” Mathis said. “If through giving we can help change one young person’s life, that student will have an impact on people we’ll never see or know. We want to do whatever we can to help kids academically, socially and physically, but first and foremost spiritually.”

Sponsorships and tickets are still available for the Florida College Impact Gala, to take place Thursday, September 28 at the Tampa Convention Center with HGTV’s Ben and Erin Napier serving as keynote speakers. For more details, visit