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Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County Announces Appointment of New CEO

September 8, 2016



Tracie T. White
(813) 515-0806


(Tampa, FL – September 7, 2016) – The Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County (ELCHC), the leading agency in Hillsborough’s early childhood care and education arena, today announced that its Board of Directors has unanimously selected Dr. Steve Knobl as Chief Executive Officer effective September 12, 2016. Knobl succeeds ELCHC’s recently retired CEO Dave McGerald who stepped down earlier this year after almost 15 years of continuous service to the $72-million-dollar agency.

“After a comprehensive and deliberate search process facilitated by a top local search firm, the ELCHC Board of Directors is delighted that Steve will lead the ELCHC as we implement a new and evolving brand and an expanding landscape of organizational change,” said Aakash Patel, Chair of the Board of Directors. “Steve has a thorough understanding of the needs of our organization and our Board of Directors has no doubt that he is the right person to take the helm at ELCHC as it enters its 16th year.”

“Steve is the best choice from a deep pool of interested and highly qualified candidates,” said Patel. “He’s been a successful leader in the Tampa Bay area and has a passion for what we do. Even more importantly, he’s a great fit with each of our critical leadership competencies we evaluated as part of our selection process. We’re delighted that he has accepted the position.”

“I’m honored, and grateful to the board for the opportunity to lead this exceptional organization of creative, dedicated, experienced and talented professionals,” said Knobl.

“This team has a reputation for innovative, relevant and insightful programming and initiatives that are often emulated and talked about around the state. This is a fantastic opportunity that any leader would welcome and I look forward to doing great things for the children and families of Hillsborough County.”

Dr. Knobl holds a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from University of Central Florida, a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Saint Leo University, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from University of South Florida. He has been an educational leader for more than 15 years and has extensive experience as an Elementary School Teacher, Adjunct Professor, Middle School and High School Principal, and College Director and Dean.

He and his wife Laura, a first grade teacher in Pasco County, are the proud parents of two sons, Drew, who is 14 years old, and Nathan, who is 11 years old. In his free time, he enjoys attending his sons’ soccer games, going to the beach, reading, and spending time with family and friends.

The Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County (ELCHC)

The Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County (ELCHC) is a local and statewide leader in early childhood care and education services and advocacy. The ELCHC is a $72 million non-profit that serves approximately 20,000 of Hillsborough’s young children and their families per day via its programs and serves. For additional information and the latest ELCHC news, visit, follow us on Twitter @ELCHillsborough or stay connected through ELC Hillsborough on Facebook.


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This post was written by Elevate, Inc.

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