All Post By Roger Mooney

We’ve found “129” articles by “Roger Mooney"
About The Author

Roger Mooney

If Roger thought covering the Tampa Bay Rays inexplicable run to the 2008 World Series was strange, imagine how he felt on the March afternoon in 2016 when he stood in the heart of Havana, Cuba while on assignment to cover the Rays historic game against the Cuban national baseball team. “Is this really happening?” he thought then. Ah, the life of a sports writer, where the unexpected is the norm.

My background story

From Little League to the World Series, Pop Warner football to the Super Bowl, Roger covered it all during his 20-plus years as a sports writer. He met everyone from Hank Aaron to Ben Zobrist, covered nearly the entire spectrum from youth sports to Florida and Florida State football to the Buccaneers and the Lightning. It was a good run, filled with great subjects for stories and a lifetime of memories, highlighted by a white-knuckle trip through the backstreets of Havana in a 1956 Dodge that did not have a working horn, speedometer or seatbelts. An unforgettable ride as the cabbie bounced through narrow streets to escape the traffic jam caused by President Obama’s arrival. Now, Roger is writing about students who benefit from the four scholarships provided by Step Up For Students. These are inspiring stories about children whose lives improved dramatically because of their new educational opportunities.

What I do before joining Step Up For Students?

Before joining Step Up, Roger spent seven seasons covering the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune and two years writing about the Rays and the Tampa Bay Lightning for The Tampa Bay Times. A native of New York City, Roger’s future as a hall-of-fame baseball player was derailed in high school when he could not make the baseball team. Undaunted, he sets his sights on writing. He studied at St. John’s University and dabbled in real estate and technical writing before finding his first job at a newspaper.

What I do on my day off?

When not working, Roger enjoys running (he has completed three marathons and has his sights set on someday running a fourth), reading (his goal is 20 books a year), bike riding, canoeing and kayaking with his wife, Suzanne, watching sitcoms (Superstore and Young Sheldon currently top the list) and taking his mixed beagle, Story, on long walks.

How to reach out?

Reach me at [email protected].
About The Author

Browse All Articles

A young artist blossoms with the love of her grandparents and the help of an education choice scholarship

BY ROGER MOONEY PLANT CITY – Lilly Bowden flipped through her sketch pad and proudly showed off her work. There’s a fox on one page and a cat on another. A giraffe from the neck up and a mountain range in all its purple majesty. One drawing begins on one side of a page and […]
Learn More

podcastED: Florida mom expresses gratitude for scholarship that benefits her daughter, contributes to her own success as tutor, advocate

On this episode, reimaginED senior writer Lisa Buie talks with Danyse Streets, a reading specialist who owns and operates Bridging the Reading Gap, a tutoring and special education advocacy company in Fleming Island, Florida, just south of Jacksonville. Her 12-year-old daughter, Kate, receives a Florida Family Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities, which Streets uses […]
Learn More

Jaylen's challenge: A mission to prevent bullying while creating Tourette Syndrome awareness

BY ROGER MOONEY LAKELAND – Jaylen Arnold was 8 when he walked into his old elementary school to speak with two dozen or so former classmates, many of whom had recently taunted and physically bullied him. Jaylen was scared. His mother, Robin, walking beside him, was proud. The meeting was Jaylen’s idea. He wanted to […]
Learn More

Putting the 'student' in 'student-athlete' with the help of an education choice scholarship

BY ROGER MOONEY TAMPA – The numbers Joquez Smith compiled as a running back during his four years of high school football place him among the best to have ever played in Hillsborough County. The numbers he’s earned in the classroom at Jesuit High School, an academically demanding Catholic school in Tampa, are just as […]
Learn More

Time to nominate your Step Up students for the annual Rising Stars Awards event

It’s time for educators to nominate students for Step Up For Students’ annual Rising Stars Awards. The recipients will be honored in April at events at eight schools across the state. The schools will be announced at a later date. Students must be enrolled in the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship (FTC), Family Empowerment Scholarship for […]
Learn More

Education choice scholarships help family continue on chosen education path

BY ROGER MOONEY Those were tears of joy rolling down her cheeks after Maureen Press opened the email and learned her four children were eligible for education choice scholarships that would keep them in private school. “I was beside myself,” Maureen recalled of that day in the spring of 2017. “I didn’t think it would […]
Learn More

New private school seeks to connect Florida students with their Jewish roots

BY LISA BUIE Rabbi Isaac Melnick thinks learning should be fun. As a young teacher in a Hebrew dual-language charter school in South Florida, he ran a lively after-school program that taught Torah to students who wanted to receive Judaic instruction. He called the program Torah 4 Everyone. He also ran Camp Cooluna, a summer camp […]
Learn More

Purple Star program lets Florida Catholic schools nurture military families

BY LISA BUIE It’s tough being the new kid in school. It’s even tougher being the new kid every two to three years. That’s the norm for 1.2 million United States children born into military families. According to the Military Child Education Coalition, military-connected children move six to nine times between kindergarten and high school graduation. Florida […]
Learn More

Fighting for life since birth, Peyton has 'overcome everything they told us she wouldn’t overcome'

BY ROGER MOONEY OKEECHOBEE – Peyton Williams entered this world with a damaged heart, a damaged airway and hardly any hope from doctors who examined her the day she was born. They told her mother her baby wouldn’t survive her first 24 hours. Then she was told Peyton wouldn’t live to her first birthday. Peyton […]
Learn More

Education choice scholarship gave Taty the 'true experience of what school is supposed to be'

BY ROGER MOONEY When she arrived at The Foundation Academy, a private K-12 school in Jacksonville, Tatyanna “Taty” Thibeaux was a shy student who didn’t say much and kept to herself. Some of that, her mother Lucy said, stemmed from a language delay. “When she was little, she really didn’t speak,” Lucy said. “She really […]
Learn More
magnifiercrossmenu