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Mike Steele

Leader Mike Steele helped start Communities In Schools of Greater Tarrant County (CIS-GTC) in 1992

Twenty-five years equates to tens of thousands of at-risk students whose lives were changed because of the vision and leadership of Communities In Schools of Greater Tarrant County (CIS-GTC).

Mike Steele, the nonprofit’s founding president and chief executive officer, will be honored for his tenure with CIS-GTC at the organization’s 25th-anniversary fundraising gala at 7 p.m. Friday, May 12, at Ridglea Country Club.

The theme Taking Flight – Helping Students Achieve New Heights is a nod to Steele’s military career prior to his leadership of CIS-GTC. Steele will retire shortly after the gala event, and Lindsey Garner, the nonprofit’s current chief operations officer, has been named Steele’s replacement upon his retirement, a press release stated.

Tickets begin at $125 and are available at
Contact for sponsorships or more information.

The country club is at 3700 Bernie Anderson Ave.

Originating from a 1990-91 United Way Stay in School task force focusing on a critical dropout problem, CIS-GTC began in 1992 and served nearly 200 students from two Fort Worth high schools – Polytechnic and Diamond-Hill Jarvis. (A complete history of the organization can be found at  Today, the organization annually supports nearly 5,000 students at 57 schools across nine districts, collaborating with 80 community partner organizations. CIS-GTC is part of the national Communities In Schools network, which serves more than 1.2 million at-risk students across the United States.

During the 2015-16 school year, 37,232 students in 52 schools were served by Communities In Schools of Greater Tarrant County (CIS-GTC). Of those, 4,572 students received 154,695 hours of intensive case management; of that group:

  • 87 percent improved their grades

  • 94 percent improved their behavior

  • 94 percent were promoted to the next grade

  • 94 percent of high school seniors graduated. Of those, 85 percent moved to post-secondary education.

The event is presented by Coldwell Banker Commercial Advisors. Additional sponsors include media partners Fort Worth Business Pressand NBC 5, along with Una and Jade Bailey, Bank Of America, Bank of Texas, Carolyn Bell and Mandy Patty, Christian Burton, Capital One, CBCA, MaryAnn and Matt Dufrene, Estrada Hinojosa/Catherine and Robert Estrada, Holt Capital, Insperity, Northern Trust, Oncor, PlainsCapital, Rylander, Clay and Opitz, Kay Sanders, TAMU, Tarrant County College, THR, UMB and VLK Architects and the Webb Family Foundation.