Heather Hanks



Square_40GU40_Honorees_Hanks__Heather.jpgALUM_40Under40_Logo-white-01.pngHeather Hanks
BA '05 |  Valrico, FL

Assistant Principal, Plant City High School
Hillsborough County Public Schools
INDUSTRY: Education


Heather Hanks is the assistant principal at Plant City High School. As a former computer science teacher and high school esports coach, she helped to start the first districtwide competitive esports structure for students in the state, and helped the largest districts in Florida come together to form the Florida Scholastic Esports League. She serves on the advisory board for the Worldwide Scholastic Esports Federation, bringing academic opportunities in STEM and social emotional learning internationally based on her leadership efforts here in Florida. She has keynoted at the STEM Ecosystems Conference on scholastic esports, and hosted workshops on the topic for STEM Ecosystems and ASCD.

She also serves on the state leadership for the Computer Science Teachers Association of Florida, and is a Code.org Lead Facilitator for the Tampa Bay STEM Network, training teachers around the state in AP Computer Science Principles, helping to expand equity and access to computer science. She also helped create professional development and train teachers to become certified in computer science as part of a statewide effort this year to expand the number of computer science teachers.

Heather is a member of Leadership Florida Education Class IV, and an ASCD Emerging Leader, publishing with ASCD on teacher-led professional development systems, and working with them on support systems for teachers and school leaders during the pandemic. Heather formerly collaborated with the UF Lastinger Center as one of 40 Florida Teacher Leader Fellows.