This weekend, Florida Citrus Sports will announce the participants in this year’s Citrus and Camping World Bowls. When a team comes to play in a bowl game in Orlando, it’s likely Brian Wagner was a part of their experience.
That’s because Wagner, a 2015-16 Volunteer of the Year award recipient, is the chair of the hospitality committee, and his job is to make sure everyone has a good time.
“When the football teams come into town, we provide them with a hospitality room, where the coaches and staff can come to get away from everything,” Wagner said. “We also try to be ambassadors to the team and for the community; we’re there if they have questions on where to go, what to see, what to do.”
A member since 2013, Wagner says he is motivated by his passion for the game of football.
“I love college sports,” Wagner said. “We all have a responsibility to help out in our community and Florida Citrus Sports was the perfect opportunity for me to combine my desire to improve my community with my love of sports.”
When the Orlando-area attorney isn’t working with the hospitality committee, he also serves on the team selection committee and attends games across the country as an official representative of Florida Citrus Sports.
“There’s the purpose of actually taking a look at the prospective teams, and sort of gauging their interest as to how well they would travel if their team was to be selected to come to Orlando,” Wagner said. “That helps when it comes to the end of the year, when we make our team selections.”
Wagner says the second function of team selection committee members is promoting awareness.
“We interact with the fans, and we interact with the coaches, and the administration at the schools,” Wagner said. “We let them know who we are, and what we are all about.”
That also means filling fans around the country in on the great work being done by LIFT Orlando in the shadow of Camping World Stadium.
“It really is a win-win situation,” Wagner said of the opportunity to help bring fans to Orlando. “You have the immediate short-term benefits, of bringing all the tourists in the area, combined with the long-term benefits, of improving housing and bettering the community.”