September 4, 2013
TALLAHASSEE – Associated Industries of Florida (AIF) has announced its new board chair - Mike Hightower, Florida Blue’s Vice President, Governmental and Legislative Affairs. Hightower was voted in by the AIF Board of Directors during the association’s Annual Conference on August 21.
“Associated Industries of Florida is honored and proud that Mike will be continuing his legacy of service as our new board chair. His sterling reputation and vast experience in this state will serve our members well as AIF continues to expand and grow. Under Mike’s leadership, we will build on our strong history of successful advocacy for the business community in both the legislative and political arenas,” said Tom Feeney, AIF President and CEO.
Hightower joined Florida Blue in 1981 as Director of Governmental and Legislative Relations and was named Vice President in 1985. He is responsible for working with key political leaders in federal, state and local government. Additionally, he maintains positive and productive working relationships with key state, local and D.C. business, political and academic community leaders.
Throughout his career, Hightower has been active in several community and civic organizations. He currently holds leadership and board positions with Enterprise Florida, Florida College System Foundation, Florida Ounce of Prevention, Florida Governor’s Mansion Foundation, U.S. Naval Academy, Florida House, Washington, D.C, among others. His record of service has earned him a long list of accolades including the 2010-13 Florida Federation of Republican Women’s Man of the Year, 2012, Florida Association of Professional Lobbyists Chairman’s Award, 2011 Learn to Read’s Literacy Champion Lifetime award, Congresswoman Tillie Fowler Lifetime Leadership Achievement Award, 2010 Department of Navy, Navy Superior Civil Service Award and HandsOn Jacksonville Community Volunteer Award, as well as the 2008 Florence N. Davis Community Lifetime Achievement Award.
He received a Bachelor of Science from Jacksonville University and is a past third-term Graduate School Adjunct Instructor at the University of Florida.