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CFO Sink, NFL Players Kick off Financial Football

1/26/2009

CONTACT:  Jayme O’Rourke or Kevin Cate
(850) 413-2842
                                               
Computer game entertains, teaches young people good financial plays
 
TAMPA—Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink teamed up today with VISA, the NFL, and PLAYERS INC to encourage young Floridians to learn the right plays to secure a strong financial future.  Sink was joined by Tampa Bay Buccaneer Running Back Warrick Dunn and New Orleans Saints Quarterback Drew Brees in launching the statewide release of Financial Football, a money management computer game for high school and college students, at the Tampa Convention Center. 
 
The event was planned to coincide with the beginning of Super Bowl XLIII week, and students from Armwood High School were happy to help demonstrate the game.
 
“This financial education initiative provides a winning playbook for students’ financial future. Students retain these life-long lessons because they’re being entertained while they’re being educated,” said CFO Sink. “Financial Football is a great start for high school or college students who need to learn the basics of money management.”
 
“High school kids need to know how to make smart money management decisions before heading off to college or entering the workforce,” said Dunn. “It takes the combined efforts of parents, teachers, and mentors within the community to give teenagers a strong background in personal finance.”
 
“It doesn’t matter whether you make minimum wage or millions,” added Brees. “If you don’t learn to budget, save, invest and pay bills on time, the consequences can be devastating.”
 
As Florida’s CFO, Sink oversees the Department of Financial Services, which is responsible for assisting consumers who need information and help related to financial services, including banking, securities and insurance.  A former banker for 30 years, including seven years as president of Florida’s largest bank, Bank of America, Sink has made it a priority to educate Floridians of all ages about financial literacy. 
 
Sink oversees the Florida Literacy Council, and has launched two large initiatives – Be the CFO of Your Family and Safeguard our Seniors – that are providing a range of educational services to help Floridians take control of their finances.
 
The department is distributing nearly 1,000 DVDs of Financial Football to Florida high schools, colleges, universities and public libraries.  The game is also available at www.MyFloridaCFO.com and is accompanied by a classroom curriculum. Mobile customers can play the game on their cell phones by texting the word VISA to 24421. 
 
“Financial Football” is part of Practical Money Skills for Life (www.practicalmoneyskills.com), a free, award-winning, teacher-tested and teacher-approved financial education program that is available in English, Spanish and Chinese. The program contains three comprehensive sections, complete with money management resources and lesson plans tailored for use at home, in the classroom or at work.
 
It also contains an array of tips to help prepare for life-changing financial events, from planning for a baby to saving for college and retirement, as well as a number of other budget calculators and interactive games.
 
The Department of Financial Services has consumer outreach coordinators available throughout Florida to present Financial Football programs or other educational presentations on a range of issues from how to buy auto insurance to disaster preparedness.  To schedule a program or to request further information, call the CFO’s consumer helpline at 1-877-MY-FL-CFO (1-877-693-5236).