Tampa Hispanic Heritage, Inc. will honor and recognize Betty Viamontes and Simon Canasi for their outstanding contributions to our community at the 32nd Tampa Hispanic Heritage, Inc. Gala on Saturday, October 12, 6:30 p.m., at the Hilton Tampa Downtown, 211 N. Tampa Street, Tampa.
Tampa Catholic would like to congratulate Simon Canasi, Consultative Board member and longtime TC supporter on this great community recognition.
Simon was born in Marianao, Cuba on June 13, 1956. He immigrated to Tampa, Florida along with his parents, Manuel and Bella Canasi, as well as his older brother, Manuel Jr., on May 18, 1961. He grew up on 11th Street in Ybor City right down the street from Mayor Nick Nuccio. The Canasi’s had no extended family in Tampa but grew to love and embrace the community where they made many friends that became their extended family.
Simon attended Memorial Junior High School and then Hillsborough High School, where he is an enshrined member of the school’s Hall of Fame. He went on to graduate from the University of South Florida in 1978 with a degree in Accounting and a minor in International Studies.
After graduating from USF, Simon started his career as a Wealth Management Advisor with Merrill Lynch for the next 30 years. The last 10 years of his career were spent as a Senior Vice President with Morgan Stanley. After 40 years in the business, he retired on February 28, 2019. During his 40-year career Simon received numerous distinctions as a member of the Merrill Lynch Circle of Excellence, the Morgan Stanley President’s Club and the Merrill Lynch Lifetime Achievement Award in 2002.
Simon’s community involvement has spanned charitable organizations such as the Boys and Girls Club of which he is an alumni, the Friends of Tampa Firefighters where he currently serves as President and donated the initial seed money for the Fallen Firefighter Memorial, and the Sant’Yago Education Foundation which he co-founded and served as President. He has served on numerous governmental and community boards.
Simon and his wife have sponsored numerous scholarships at Hillsborough Community College, University of South Florida, University of Tampa, and Tampa Catholic High School.
The TC community and family is blessed to have Simon as a regular participant in ongoing school projects and involvement in our fundraising efforts.