Trustees of Florida’s embassy explore UF campus


Florida House on Capitol Hill hosted its annual spring trustee meeting for 2024 on the University of Florida campus this year, immersing themselves in the vibrant energy of Gainesville's iconic university.

Florida House trustees and guests explored notable locations around campus, kicking off festivities with a warm welcome at Visors Rooftop at Spurrier’s Gridiron Grille. Coach Steve Spurrier himself joined the gathering, extending his gratitude for choosing his restaurant and treating guests to his renowned cuisine.

The following day, Florida House Trustees embarked on a full campus tour starting with a visit to the honeybee lab. Led by world-renowned expert Dr. Jamie Ellis, trustees gained insights into honeybee conservation and ecology. They had a firsthand look at the hives, honey extractors and their one-of-a-kind indoor bee observation room. They then journeyed to Smathers Libraries, where trustees explored the UF Judaica Library and perused historic memorabilia from Florida House and other notable figures. They enjoyed seeing an archival video featuring Rhea Chiles, Florida House's founder, in conversation with then-Congressman Bill Nelson.

Concluding their campus tour, the trustees embarked on an exploration of Malachowski Hall, the newest addition to the UF campus. Led by engineer ambassadors, they witnessed students leading research in AI, data information and technology.

Trustees enjoyed the Florida Museum of Natural History before dinner and the awarding of the 2024 Distinguished Artist and Author Awards, celebrating the profound impact of Pulitzer Prize winner Dr. Jack E. Davis and National Geographic photographer Mac Stone. And after a morning of conducting business, the Harn Museum of Art docents led the trustees on private tours of their extensive collections, including the Vickers Collection of Florida landscapes.

Florida House is the only state embassy in the nation's capital. Situated in a Victorian townhouse on the corner of East Capitol and Second Streets Northeast, the embassy welcomes more than 10,000 Floridians and their friends every year, whether traveling on business or vacation. As a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, Florida House accepts no state tax dollars.

Visit Florida House to see the stunning pictures of Florida icon Clyde Butcher, take a tour of the newly renovated interior and garden, or just relax with a glass of orange juice during a busy day in Washington, D.C. To see all the happenings at Florida House, follow on social media @floridahousedc.