Coed, independent, PK3-12th grade school in St. Petersburg, Florida.

The Ross Roeder Institute

by Nancy L. Spencer, Head of School
When donor passion, institutional priorities, and mission align, magic can happen. With that in mind, I am delighted to announce that Shorecrest has received a $1 million endowment gift to establish the Ross Roeder Institute for Economics, Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship (RRI). The RRI will establish a historic, first-ever faculty chair at Shorecrest. The program will fund a faculty position with the vision that this faculty member will teach while also implementing a schoolwide program in financial literacy and entrepreneurship. 

Our donors are Jan & Craig Sher, and Mary Anne Reilly, who have a lot in common. They are all emeritus trustees, parents of alumni, and current grandparents whose service leadership has been a part of the Shorecrest story for decades. Jan, Craig, and Mary Anne have chosen to dedicate this new Institute at Shorecrest to Ross Roeder, in memory of Mary Anne’s late husband, honoring his passion for business, economics and the entrepreneurial spirit. This is the largest endowed gift that Shorecrest has ever received to support people and programs.   

“Jan and I are very excited about helping create the Ross Roeder Institute,” shared Craig. “Ross personified the free enterprise spirit and believed in financial literacy education for all. We strongly support economic education for all Shorecrest students as well as varied courses and clubs to teach entrepreneurialism.”

Mary Anne continued, “My family and I are very happy to be involved in the creation of the Ross Roeder Institute. My late husband spent his entire career in business and was deeply invested in financial literacy.”

The goal of RRI is to enhance our current instruction with the eventual creation of a new signature program in the Upper School, consisting initially of electives in economics and financial literacy, and then growing into other subjects. 

We believe that the fundamental importance of teaching students about financial literacy will be a differentiator in our market and great for Shorecrest. Already the EDI program in the Middle School and the entrepreneurship aspect of the capstone STEAM certificate demonstrates that there is robust interest in these topics among our students. 

We envision an RRI program that includes: 
  • An Upper School academic signature program and elective classes 
  • Creating financial literacy and entrepreneurial enrichment activities for all grades 
  • “SHORETank” -  an annual competition, which would seek to engage students in the Lower, Middle and Upper Schools to learn fundamental financial/business skills and entrepreneurship
  • Internships and opportunities for students to shadow business owners and entrepreneurs
  • Engagement of local alumni/parents as speakers and mentors, and judges for SHORETank 
A nationwide search for the Director of the Ross Roeder Institute will begin this month, with the intention of launching RRI programming in the 2023-2024 school year. 
This gift came about because of donor interest in a passion project which aligned with our mission and strategic initiatives. It is the result of working with motivated donors who care deeply about an issue and finding a way for them to make a meaningful impact on the life of the School. I know that this gift and the Ross Roeder Institute will have a lasting impact and a powerful legacy well into Shorecrest’s second century. 

Please join me in thanking Jan and Craig Sher, and Mary Anne Reilly for their inspired leadership in moving Shorecrest forward with the launch of this incredible new program. Their generous gift begins a program that will benefit generations of Shorecrest students and future community leaders. With support from future donors who share a passion for the program, Shorecrest will be able to implement the full vision for the Ross Roeder Institute for Economics, Financial Literacy and Entrepreneurship. 

All the best, 

Shorecrest Preparatory School

5101 First Street Northeast
St Petersburg, FL 33703
Phone: (727) 522-2111  |  Fax: (727) 527-4191

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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a private, non-sectarian, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students preschool through high school, located in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Shorecrest acknowledges its obligation to prohibit discrimination, harassment, or retaliation on the basis of race, color, religion, age, national origin sex, citizenship status, genetic information, handicap or disability in admissions, access, employment, tuition assistance, educational policies, or other school administered student and employee programs and activities. Questions regarding the School’s compliance with the application and administration of the School’s nondiscrimination policies should be directed to Kristine Grant, Head of Middle School, 5101 First Street Northeast, St. Petersburg, Florida 33703, (727)-522-2111, or to the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR). Please refer to the School’s Non-Discrimination Compliance Policy on the School’s website for information on how to file complaints with OCR.