In 1987, Stanley G. Tate fought to put higher education within the reach of the average Florida family, and chose the Florida Prepaid College Program as his way to accomplish it. Tirelessly, he championed the college savings program until, on September 22, 1988, Governor Bob Martinez’s twin granddaughters became the first two beneficiaries, bringing Mr. Tate’s vision into a reality.
The program grew quickly, repaying the “start-up” loan it had received from the Florida Legislature in just one year and remaining self-supporting ever since. Florida Prepaid College Plans have been offered every year since, with the Florida 529 Savings Plan being added in 2002. This gave Florida families even more flexibility and options to save for college.
Approaching 30 years since the first Prepaid Plan sales, the Florida Prepaid College Board oversees the largest and most successful prepaid program of its kind. More than 1.8 million Prepaid Plans have been purchased, and more than 450,000 students have attended college using their Prepaid Plan. The Florida 529 Savings Plan, which the Board also oversees, has been ranked among the best-performing college savings plans by SavingforCollege.com. Certainly, Mr. Tate’s legacy will continue to live on through the children the program he started helps year after year.