Jason Taylor Foundation’s efforts are ‘louder than a bomb’

By Kevin Gale

Steve Sadaka has given a lot more than a cup of sugar to neighbor Jason Taylor, who will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this August.

Steve Sadaka
Steve Sadaka

The CEO of the StevenDouglas executive recruiting firm found out his neighbor’s foundation had lost some key donation sources during the recession. He stepped forward with the concept for a grassroots fundraiser to raise $100,000, says Seth Levitt, executive director of the Jason Taylor Foundation. “We sort of laughed at him,” Levitt recalls.

But Sadaka was undeterred, putting together a committee of about a dozen people, and raised $106,000 the first year.

Sadaka has continued to expand the committee and find people passionate about the foundation’s mission, which provides after-school programs, scholarships and poetry competitions for students.

Sadaka estimates the efforts have raised close to $1.5 million since 2009, and Levit says they are running at a $200,000-plus rate each year now.

Sadaka is having a fundraiser featuring Taylor and students in the foundation’s programs on April 12 at his home in Weston, and then another in June at Smoke on the Water, a cigar bar in Weston.

One of the foundation’s key programs is the Jason Taylor Reading Room presented by StevenDouglas at the Miramar Youth Enrichment Center and New Renaissance Middle School in Iramar.

The two-hour, after-school program helps middle and high school students with vocabulary development, reading comprehension, language arts, creative writing and math. A full-time education director, certified teachers and teachers’ aides provide a curriculum, but there is also help with homework, too.

About six years ago, one of the eighth-grade students in the program was so inspired by a lesson from education director Kevin Sawyer that she came back the next day with a poem.

That prompted a poetry corner, which evolved into the Omari Hardwick Blueapple Poetry Network. Hardwick, an actor, artist and poet Levitt has known for about 20 years, has written poetry with students during his visits to South Florida and Skyped with them while traveling.

The program now encompasses almost every public high school in Broward County plus some schools in Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and St. Lucie counties.

Kids get up and rap about their life, which can include violence and sexual abuse, Sadaka says. “We have actually prevented suicides because kids felt all alone,” he says.

The program is supported by 42 organizations, including foundations, universities and businesses.

The Jason Taylor Foundation also brought “Louder Than a Bomb,” a poetry competition that started in Chicago, to South Florida in 2014. Forty teams participated in 2016 and this year’s competition wraps up April 8.

The foundation teamed up with Take Stock in Children for the Jason Taylor Scholars program. Students in the sixth and seventh grades sign a contract promising good grades and good behavior to compete for a four-year Florida Prepaid College Program tuition scholarship.

Feel inspired? Use this link to make a donation to the foundation: https://goo.gl/Aoh50U.

You May Also Like
An Unknown Side of Cancun: Enjoy a Luxurious Stay at the JW Marriott Resort and Spa and Bring Your Taste for Adventure

Treat yourself to luxury, relaxation and unforgettable experiences at this fantastic resort.

Read More
Steiger Facial Plastic Surgery Offers Pamper Mom Facial Special

The offering is available through May 31.

Read More
NAIOP South Florida Appoints Officers, Executive Board and Board of Directors for 2022

NAIOP South Florida, a Commercial Real Estate Development Association offering advocacy, education and business opportunities to its members, has announced the following officers for the 2022 Board of Directors: President:

Read More
Pride Week Festival Begins With Tribute to Pulse Nightclub Survivor

Miami Beach Pride’s week-long festivities will commence with a special tribute to the LGBTQ+ community honoring the victims of the tragic shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. A ceremonial “flip

Read More
Other Posts
Surfside luxury condo sees notable sales

Arte at Surfside is making waves. There’s, of course, the news that Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner are renting at the 16-resident luxury condominium. And there’s the December penthouse sale

Read More
Up in the Air: A Discussion

In a dynamic region where residents are typically on the move, everyone is wondering about the health of the airline industry and the safety of airports and airplanes. Everyone is

Read More
South Florida Yachting Legend Passes

Robert “Bob” Roscioli, an icon in the South Florida marine industry, has passed away. Many recognize the name Roscioli from the widely-successful and world-renowned Roscioli Yachting Center, a full service

Read More
Four key steps

[vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text] What a crazy time we are all experiencing. Right now, getting back to basics is most important. It is not and

Read More

Drew Limsky

Drew Limsky



Drew Limsky joined Lifestyle Media Group in August 2020 as Editor-in-Chief of South Florida Business & Wealth. His first issue of SFBW, October 2020, heralded a reimagined structure, with new content categories and a slew of fresh visual themes. “As sort of a cross between Forbes and Robb Report, with a dash of GQ and Vogue,” Limsky says, “SFBW reflects South Florida’s increasingly sophisticated and dynamic business and cultural landscape.”

Limsky, an avid traveler, swimmer and film buff who holds a law degree and Ph.D. from New York University, likes to say, “I’m a doctor, but I can’t operate—except on your brand.” He wrote his dissertation on the nonfiction work of Joan Didion. Prior to that, Limsky received his B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Emory University and earned his M.A. in literature at American University in connection with a Masters Scholar Award fellowship.

Limsky came to SFBW at the apex of a storied career in journalism and publishing that includes six previous lead editorial roles, including for some of the world’s best-known brands. He served as global editor-in-chief of Lexus magazine, founding editor-in-chief of custom lifestyle magazines for Cadillac and Holland America Line, and was the founding editor-in-chief of Modern Luxury Interiors South Florida. He also was the executive editor for B2B magazines for Acura and Honda Financial Services, and he served as travel editor for Conde Nast. Magazines under Limsky’s editorship have garnered more than 75 industry awards.

He has also written for many of the country’s top newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Boston Globe, USA Today, Worth, Robb Report, Afar, Time Out New York, National Geographic Traveler, Men’s Journal, Ritz-Carlton, Elite Traveler, Florida Design, Metropolis and Architectural Digest Mexico. His other clients have included Four Seasons, Acqualina Resort & Residences, Yahoo!, American Airlines, Wynn, Douglas Elliman and Corcoran. As an adjunct assistant professor, Limsky has taught journalism, film and creative writing at the City University of New York, Pace University, American University and other colleges.