For almost forty years, Mr. Victor Hart, Sr. has faithfully served on the Florida Community Health Centers, Inc. Board of Directors. In September of 1983, he answered the call with great passion and commitment. Mr. Hart has met with numerous governmental officials on behalf of FCHC. He has often traveled to Washington, DC to educate legislators on our work and to advocate for the needs of our patients and communities. Mr. Hart is known for his attendance at board meetings no matter the circumstances in his own life, always entering the room with a smile and a hearty greeting for all present. Now, at more than 90 yrs old, he has decided to retire.
Mr. Hart, known to many as “Chief,” was born and raised on Cat Island in the Bahamas. There he was brought up to value integrity and high moral principle, both of which have served him well in his role as a FCHC board member. Mr. Hart also inherited an innate ability to organize people for action. This led to him becoming a visionary social activist and leader.
Before immigrating to the U.S. at the age of 21, Mr. Hart worked in the Treasury Department of the Bahamian Government. After settling in the Gifford community, he noted inequities in the treatment received by members of the community as a result of their race. In April 1961, Mr. Hart became an American citizen. In the early 60s, Mr. Hart responded to the needs of the Gifford community by helping to birth the Gifford Progressive Civic League. In that same year, he founded the Indian River County Branch of the NAACP. In 2017, his contributions to the Gifford community were recognized with the naming of the Victor Hart, Sr. Community Enhancement Complex.
Mr. Hart is a long-time member of the Friendship Missionary Baptist Church, where he has served as a Deacon for many years. His favorite song is the hymn, “The Garden”, and his faith is a guiding force for his life of service to others. For more than 40 years, Mr. Hart was married to the late Valarees Young Hart. He is the proud father of 11 children, numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren. Through his example, his children have learned the critical importance of community service, with many working in the public sector, leading community organizations, and serving on a variety of community boards.
We owe an incredible debt of gratitude to Mr. Hart for his tireless work on behalf of Florida Community Health Centers, Inc. for almost 40yrs. We can never repay him or sufficiently thank him, but we can give honor where it is due. As a result, we will celebrate “Victor Hart, Sr. Day” at FCHC on September 7th,