T EPOR R L L BA BASE Inside) (See
• Fitness & Defense • Free Safety Workshop Starts a Safe Summer
Julio G. Anta GET FIT WITH ANTA It’s that time of the year again — summer vacation is right around the corner. Children will be going to the park, hanging out with friends, going on vacation and some will return to their native country to visit family. Summer vacation can be memorable time for children but predators and criminals are also preparing to victimize them and ruin a vacation. Are you and your child prepared? At Anta’s Fitness and Self Defense, our mission is to make America safe, one child at a time. On Friday, May 18, at 5:15 p.m., we’ll host a free community service event: the “Steal-Proof Master Challenge & Child Safety/Anti-Abduction Workshop at Anta’s Fitness and Self Defense. We’ll screen the “Journey of the Steal-Proof Master,” a fantasy-based abduction prevention movie and program for children and their parents. Anta’s “Steal-Proof Master Challenge” will provide free training in an all-out effort to teach children and adults about preventing abductions. According to the FBI, no area in the nation is safe from predators trying to harm our children. Miami was rated No. 23 in the FBI’s list of America’s unsafe cities. (Over one million children are abused, molested or abducted every year!). This summer your children will be playing in parks and you will be on vacation. As a father of two boys, and a retired
Law Enforcement Officer, certified instructor in the National Safety Alliance and Kids Safe Network, as well as a martial arts instructor, I believe every child should be versed in street safety. Having been featured in numerous TV shows and conducted many abduction awareness/stranger danger seminars in the City of Doral and throughout the U.S., I’ve studied with the top experts of realitybased self defense and stranger danger. Yet, what still worries me the most is how innocent children cannot adequately defend themselves against the lures of the twistedmind sexual predator or abductor. “The Steal-Proof Master” can change all that, using the vehicle of fantasy adventure that introduces children to the most common lures and tricks used by predators and, most importantly, teaches them how to respond appropriately. Kids will love this movie and its creative approach. It holds their attention so that critical information gets transferred in a way they can relate to. Don’t be surprised to see your child practicing and acting out the various behaviors associated with each evil warrior depicted. It’s a great way for you and your children to begin your summer vacation, learning to recognize predator lures and how to maintain awareness. We are so excited about this program that we will continue to replay it throughout the summer in our summer camps. Call us today to reserve your spot. Have a fun-filled and safe summer, too!
Julio Anta, head instructor at Anta’s Fitness and Self Defense since 1998, can be contacted at 305 599-3649 or on the internet at <www.antakungfu.com> or by Email at: < email@example.com>.
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The Artist Portfolio Fine Arts School Students Achieve National Awards of Excellence!
Brenda Vazquez, Regional Gold Key Recipient, National Silver Key Recipient
Amanda Barrios, National Gold Key Award Recipient
Natalie Preston, Regional Honorable Mention and Silver Key Recipient
The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards have an impressive legacy dating back to 1923 and a noteworthy roster of past winners including Andy Warhol, Sylvia Plath, Truman Capote, Richard Avedon, Robert Redford and Joyce Carol Oates. The Awards are an important opportunity for students to be recognized for their creative talents. Each year, the Alliance partners with more than 100 visual and literary-arts focused organizations across the country to bring The Awards to local communities. Teens in grades 7 through 12 can apply in 28 categories of art and writing for the chance to earn scholarships and have their works exhibited or published. Submissions are juried by luminaries in the visual and literary arts, some of whom are past award recipients. Panelists look for works that best exemplify originality, technical skill and the emergence of a personal voice or vision. The Artist Portfolio Fine Arts School, of Doral and art teacher, Sara Alfaro is proud to announce that three of their art students achieved awards of excellence. Amanda Barrios, Grade 7, earned a gold key award for her mixed media. Natalie Preston, Grade 8, earned a silver key and honorable mention for her selection of photography and Brenda Vazquez Grade 8 earned a gold key for her sculptural found object work. All pieces were on exhibition at The Miami Art Museum for the month of February. Amanda Barrios’ mixed media works earned a national gold key award. Brenda Vasquez’ “Techno Elephant” sculpture earned a national silver key award. The 2012 National ART.WRITE.NOW NYC Exhibition, showcasing National Gold Medalist work, will be on display in New York City in June 2012 coinciding with the national celebration at Carnegie Hall on June 1, 2012. Approximately 300 works of art and more than 50 works of writing from the National Award winners will be included in the exhibition.
Amanda Barrios 7th Grade
The Artist Portfolio Fine Arts School:
Allie Venegas, 2011 Regional Gold Key recipient, Natalie Preston, Claudia Gomez and Brenda Vazquez
4005 NW 114 Avenue Unit 16, Doral, FL 33178. www.alfaroartistportfolio.com or contact us at 305-609-9408 *source: Scholastics Art and Writing Website
Brenda Vazquez 8th Grade
Ocean Bank Honored by Hispanic Chamber The South Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce presented Ocean Bank the 2012 Hispanic Leadership Award in Technology at an April 5 luncheon at the Coral Gables Country Club for its numerous innovations in using technology to improve customer service. Ocean Bank President and CEO A. Alfonso Macedo accepted the award, along with Eddie Buitrago, Senior Vice President and Information Technology Director for Ocean Bank, from Chamber President Liliam Lopez. Ocean Bank, headquartered in Doral at 780 N.W 42nd Ave. has put a major emphasis on technology, and we are proud to have our accomplishments recognized by the South Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Macedo said. Among the banks innovations is the creation of an Intelligent Data Warehouse data repository that improves customer service and helps bankers in their decision-
making through better and faster access to data. Ocean Bank also is using Metro Ethernet, a high-speed computer network to distribute and manage the data faster and better. On the consumer side, Ocean Bank launched an improved website with sophisticated financial tools, including FinanceWorks, which allows customers to see all of their bank and credit card accounts in more than 18,000 financial institutions. The website also offers a mobile application that provides customers instant access to their accounts via instant messenger and provides TurboTax to customers free or at discounted prices, depending on the application. Ocean Bank is the largest independent, state-chartered commercial bank headquartered in Florida, with $3.25 billion in assets. For more information, log on to <www.oceanbank.com>.
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It’s time for Goombay! Goombay! Goombay! BY CARL RACHELSON
Judging from our recent rainy weekends, if no one has yet made it official, now is the time to admit to yourself that the season has changed. We are all slow to come to grips with a number of our shortcomings; we may need to exercise more, eat differently and complain less, but realizing these things and making the changes are two different things. Despite our desire to hold on to our glorious, dry, humid-free springtime, summer has awakened and you’d better find some shelter if you are pedaling here and there. However, before you lament the end of paradise, Coconut Grove will hold its 36th annual Goombay Festival on June 1-3, I suppose rain or shine. The Goombay Festival pays respect to the first black Bahamians to arrive in South Florida. Originally craftsmen and laborers, they rooted themselves to an area near Douglas Road and Grand Avenue; perhaps you’ve seen the few remaining long,
straight and narrow shotgun houses. Thirty-five years ago, someone decided to pass along a bit of the culture and here we are today giving some proper love to nearby islander history. Goombay celebrations are held throughout a number of places in the Caribbean; ours fills the Grove, makin’ lots of dancin,’ prancin’ and romancin’. It’s a slice of Mardi Gras, a piece of Mummers Parade and a miniature Carnival, meaning sequined costumes, strutting marching bands, fancy floats and curbside culinary opportunities. Oh yeah, if it’s not raining, there will be bicycles everywhere, too. There are always bikes in the Grove. We all know, though it sometimes fails to register, that there is a different world near our shores and it is not necessarily Atlantis. The beats of the islands, the simmering stews, the local crafts; all are so close, but so far away. For a weekend in June, we can reacquaint ourselves. A colorful parade awaits all who partake. Percussion, whistles, bells and beats will roll down the avenue Saturday and Sunday, warm vibes wafting through the community. Other events include a kickoff set, historical brunch, and gospel service all spelled out on the website. As always,
ART in MIAMI
Junkanoo music – the above-mentioned instruments, plus horns and scrapers – will be the festival’s constant chaperon, there whenever you need it. Over the years, appearances have been made by R&B acts like the Temptations, rappers and NBA players, so if you are star-struck, you might want to make an appearance. Since it is June and the rainy season, just grab an umbrella and join in the festivities. For information, go to <http://www.goombayfestivalcoconutgrove.com/>.
Coconut Grove’s annual Goombay Festival means sequined costumes, strutting marching bands, fancy floats and curbside culinary opportunities.
Miracle League gets Marlins grant, new home BY RAQUEL GARCIA
After two years of searching for the perfect spot to build a specialized baseball field in Miami-Dade to serve the county’s more than 30,000 physically and developmentally disabled children, the Howard Palmetto Miracle League of Miami-Dade has found a home at Tamiami Park and the money to make it a reality. Prior to the start of the Marlins-Astros game at Marlins Park on Saturday, Apr. 14, Miami Marlins president David Samson, Marlins Foundation executive director Alfredo Mesa, pitcher Heath Bell and catcher John Buck presented a $100,000 check to Miracle League co-chairs, Keith Reilly and Karl Sturge, and fundraising cochairs Lisa Mays and Sandy Robinson. The endowment will help the organization begin construction on its new home at Tamiami Park. “For 50 years the Howard Palmetto Baseball Softball League has served many of the boys and girls of our communities, but special needs children are not being served,” Sturge said. “Now we can close the bridge and serve all the needs of the county and these kids can be just like every other child.” Earlier, at the 2012 inaugural meeting of the Miami-Dade Miracle League in Pinecrest, foundation director Mesa announced the gift. “I’m here to share with you that you have the Marlins Foundation’s commitment, our president David Samson and our entire board, to help make this dream a reality,” Mesa said. At the same time, Miami-Dade Parks and Recreation director Jack Kardys pinpointed the location of the specialized field and playground complex. “It is so rare that you find an organization (like the Miracle League of MiamiDade) that shares our commitment to pro-
Pictured prior to the game at Marlins Park are (l-r) Miami Marlins president David Samson; Baseball Buddy Edgar Cordero; team mascot Billy the Marlin; Miracle League player Anthony Cordero (front); Marlins pitcher Heath Bell; Miracle League co-chairs Keith Reilly and Karl Sturge; former Miami Mayor Manny Diaz; Miracle League fundraising director/co-chair Lisa Mays; Marlins catcher John Buck; Baseball Buddy Will Sturge; Miracle League fundraising director/co-chair Sandy Robinson, and Marlins Foundation executive director Alfredo Mesa. (Photo courtesy Miami Marlins) ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
viding services to the disabled in our community like we do,” Kardys said. “A yearand-a-half ago, Keith and Karl presented this beautiful idea and video that hit me right in the heart and brought tears to my eyes, and I thought to myself, yes, this is something that we can do.” Kardys went on to relate the unique challenges encountered in finding just the right field to suit the needs of the project. “We finally settled on Tamiami Park because, as many of you know, it is the center of the universe for competitive baseball,” he said. “The configuration is going to be on the west side of the park where we have the capacity to handle the needs of the disabled.” Keith Reilly, former president of the
Howard Palmetto Baseball Softball Association and current co-chair of the Miracle League of Miami Dade, said the Tamiami Park location was perfect. “We looked all over the county for the ideal location for the baseball field,” he said. “It had to be centrally located in the county, near a major highway, with hotels and a medical facility close by.” During his presentation, Reilly noted that the Tamiami Park field is situated precisely in the middle of the county. “We are thrilled to be a partner with the Miami Marlins in this truly worthwhile project,” Sturge said. “This spring the Marlins opened their stadium to great fanfare and they have been tremendously supportive to our endeavor and, equally
important, to special needs children. “With the partnership of the Marlins and Miami-Dade County Parks, we are in the initial phase of fundraising and our goal is to finish the field in spring 2013. But we will have Miracle League games running before then on existing baseball fields across the county. Any special needs families interested in participating should contact us.” The first Miracle League began in Atlanta in 2000. Today there are 255 Miracle League organizations around the world serving more than 250,000 children and young adults with disabilities. For more information, call 786-2244800 or go online to <www.miracleleagueofmiamidade.org>.
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Full Service Immigration Law Advice for getting through a divorce Firm Celebrates Opening BY DEBBIE MARTINEZ
By y Ann n Lino A newly formed full service immigration law firm, The Hermanni Law Group, celebrated their opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony and cocktail party on the terrace at their Coral Gables location where guests enjoyed great food, drink and a live band on April 20. The impetus for creating this firm came from Kurt Hermanni, who had gained a great reputation as a skilled, honest and extremely competent international lawyer dedicated exclusively to the practice of immigration law. Hermanni remembers a time when a client’s friend called from New York to help his detained nephew get a bond from an immigration judge in Krome Detention Center. Thereafter, the family only wanted him despite the added travel expenses. That level of trust and dedication has propelled the Hermanni Law Group to handle cases throughout the United States. That is not hard to understand as there are so many cases of immigrants being victimized by less principled and trustworthy attorneys. Passionately committed to serve his clients, Hermanni has developed relationships that have dramatically increased his client base through satisfied client referrals. Seeing the growing demand, Hermanni decided to better serve his growing client list by creating this new firm with a group of outstanding lawyers all of whom have a general competency in general immigration law but also specialize in various critical areas. While Hermanni is fluent in English, Spanish and Italian, his entire team his fluent in English and Spanish. The firm is currently comprised of five full-time house attorneys: Kurt Hermanni, Senior Partner; Norma Lorenzo, Managing Attorney; and Associate Attorneys Erica Perez-Luque, Kerry Anne Donohue, and Karamat Qayum. The Hermanni Law Group currently represents numerous international companies throughout the world, with clients in Latin America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, in support of their employees’ short-term or long-term placements in the United States. Additionally, the firm represents clients facing immediate removal from the United States and those seeking asylum, Cuban Adjustment and adjustment status. Successful representations have focused on defense of marriage fraud claims and cases involving violence against women. The firm’s distinguished clientele includes a former South American President and his family, several foreign dignitaries, a former military General, military attaches, professional athletes, and foreign investors from China, Serbia, Colombia, Venezuela, Spain and Italy. The Hermanni Law Group is located at 2655 LeJeune Road, Ste. 800, Coral Gables, FL 33134. Ph: 305 640-8222 or Mobile 786-271-6699. Visit our website at www.legalizationlawyer.com.
My ex-husband continues to make my life miserable. What I don’t understand is that he’s the one that had the affair. Why does he continue to act this way? Who knows and who cares? Are you going to spend your precious time and energy figuring out why? Instead, figure out how you are going to find peace in your new life. That’s where you need to put your energy. Who gives a rat’s behind “why” he’s doing it. He’s a miserable person. Are you going to be miserable right alongside him or are you going to take control of your peace of mind and happiness? List the ways he is making your life difficult (you are choosing to be miserable), then write a solution next to each situation that will give you peace. Don’t focus on what is fair or what the MSA says, but what will give you peace. After you do that, think of ways that you can attain that solution. Here’s an example. The MSA states that your ex has to drop the kids off bathed and fed at the end of his weekend. He doesn’t do it. The kids come home hungry and dirty. Your lack of peace is coming from the “it’s not fair” syndrome, “I’m going to make him comply” mindset and your lack of acceptance that he won’t. Here is the solution. Accept the fact that divorce is not fair, you will probably never get him to comply and accept that the kids will come home hungry and dirty, and turn that time into quality time with your kids. At the end of the day, it’s truly his loss and your gain. Think about this. Do you want to be happy or be right? How do I balance my new role of single mom and being a single woman? Great question and one of the biggest challenges of divorce. After a divorce, a woman is left standing holding a bag of pieces and wondering how she is going to put all of that back together in a new way. She has the
responsibility of comforting, nurturing and protecting her children, but she also has a responsibility to herself as well. She is now faced with the task of reinventing herself as a woman. The key word in your question is balance. So many times I see women focus so much on their children that they forget or don’t have the time and energy to focus on themselves. If you are happy, your children will be happy. Take time to reconnect with the woman in you and not the mom. There is nothing wrong in taking time out for you. A word of caution, don’t let people’s perception bother you. If you were still married, you would go out to dinner and leave your children with a babysitter, right? So, then why is it looked upon differently when a divorced mom does it? But people say things like, “You should be home with your children.” Don’t get caught up in what I call Divorced Mother’s Guilt. I’m not talking about getting divorced and going wild, I’m talking about dong what you would normally do. Keep the scales balanced. Note to Self: There is hope in all things new. Today I start my new life with excitement. Debbie’s Library: • The Courage to be a Single Mother by Sheila Ellison; • A Year by the Sea by Joan Anderson; • A Weekend to Change Your Life by Joan Anderson Debbie Martinez is a Certified Divorce Life Coach. She has given workshops on divorce and women’s issues and has offices in South Miami. For information, call 305-984-5121 or go to <www.thepowerofdivorcecoach.com>.
Spring Trips, Concerts & More at MCS MIAMI CHRISTIAN
UPDATE BY GLORIA BURNS
The Miami Christian School Symphonic Band, participating in the “Music USA Festival” in Orlando, received a Superior rating in the Open Class Concert Band Category.
MCS Symphonic Band recently winning ‘Superior’ trophy in Orlando includes standing at top (l-r) Katelyn Arista, Luis Castro, Director Derek Shute, Victoria Vila, Alina Andrews, Chrissy Rosillo, Elizabeth Rosillo, Sofia Granado, Allison Bean, Seth Lembert, Robert Barrueco, and Michelle Lopez; seated ( l-r) are Barbra Del Valle, Sonali Khiyani, Sofia Saenz, Anais Rivere, Genesis Henriquez, and Christopher Abello. –––––––––––––––––––––––
Star students honored at ISSF Luncheon include (lr) Christopher Abello, Adrian Guerra and Alexandra Rios. –––––––––––––––––––––––––
* MCS students also took the stage at the Independent Schools of South Florida’s massive recognition luncheon at the Doubletree Hotel on April 18. More than 900 attended the 22nd Annual “Star Awards” luncheon, recognizing top students from approximately 60 of the accredited independent schools throughout South Florida. Miami Christian student honorees included Alexandra Rios (Grade 12); Christopher Abello (Grade 8); and Adrian Guerra (Grade 5). Associate Head, Teri Logan, J.D., serves as the Executive Director of ISSF. * MCS Seniors flew to Costa Rica for their Senior Trip that combined time dedicated to missions and education as well as recreation. The students not only worked with a church in Heredia, clearing fence line
Under the direction of Derek Shute, the group continues to excel in performance and sight reading. The band, sharing the stage at the MCS Concert Orchestra, performed for the school community at the May 1 Annual Spring Concert, a show that featured rock and roll hits of the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s. The concert served as a way to showcase this talented group of musicians and singers as well as raise funds to benefit advancement of the Arts at MCS. MCS seniors visit Costa Rican orphanage.
for its expansion, but visited an orphanage near La Portuna to present a monetary gift to both the church and the orphanage to assist their efforts. In addition, the seniors enjoyed a beach day on banana boats, snorkeling on Tortuga Island; visiting markets; and zip-lining, using the hot springs near volcanoes. * Also traveling and benefiting from a life experience opportunity were Middle School students who traveled to North Carolina April 22 for a stay at a retreat camp, afford-
At North Carolina retreat (l-r) Julitza Lopez, Allison Bean, Anais Riviere, Sofia Saenz, Sarai Noguera, and Emily Vasquez.
ing them time to pray and play. From sharing time at chapel to visiting Grandfather Mountain and more, it was a most memorable trip for all. * One of the year’s highlights for the junior (soon to be senior) class: the annual ring ceremony. On March 6, parents and students enjoyed a lovely dinner at Renaissance Banquet Hall in Coral Gables when class president, Lizzie Vinas , addressed her classmates before a presentation rings ordered earlier this year. * As graduation approaches, seniors most recently getting notifications from colleges include Nick Betancourt and Kunal Khiyani, both accepted at the University of Pennsylvania, nationally-ranked as the fifth best U. S. university by US News and World Report’s Guide to Colleges. * Re-enrollment has opened for the 20122013 school year. Call Gladys Mata at 305221-7754, ext.771, for a tour and information. Check MCS out on Facebook at <on.fb.me/mcsvictors> and the <www.miamichristian.org> for more details.
Look Who Read Us!
Addressing an orthopedic federation meeting in Tallinn, Estonia, Dr. Alejandro Badia took along his copy of the Doral Tribune to read in spare moments. The Badia Surgical office is located in Doral at 3650 NW 82nd Ave.
Our Lady of Guadalupe Church Becoming Part of Doral’s Fabric
BY GLORIA BURNS With groundbreaking over and construction underway for Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, Father Israel Mago and 4,100 families belonging to the City of Doral’s only Catholic parish are busy, indeed. In fact, the church has become part of the fabric of Doral with its ever-growing population of those of the Catholic faith and its community outreach. Despite lacking a permanent home, the church family has made great progress utilizing its parish center offices to full advantage, providing a small chapel area and room for meetings, choir practice, adoration and more. The church even has its own Knights of Columbus group, participates in Emaus retreats and has an impressive CCD program, serving about 500 students.
With an incredibly-dedicated congregation and Fr. Mago’s encouragement and support, OLG has held numerous spiritual and social activities that have helped bond members to each other and the church family. During a fundraising effort to build the new church, its members recently participated in the Doral Relay for Life with a team theme of “The Greatest Miracle.” They were one of many groups participating to raise funds for the American Cancer Society and selling a variety of great food. For Doral area newcomers wanting more information about Our Lady Of Guadalupe Catholic Church, visit online <www.guadalupedoral.org>. Holy Mass is celebrated every Saturday and Sunday at the Doral Academy High School cafeteria. The parish center offices are located at Suite 221, at 11402 NW 41st St. Tel 305593-6123.
Taiwanese Cuisine Feature of Doral Chinese Chamber May 20 The third annual gala to celebrate Asian-American Heritage month will feature an imperial banquet for the Doral Overseas Chinese Business Chamber on May 20, served from 5 until 11 p.m. at the Intercontinental Hotel. An exquisite cuisine will be planned by international award-winning Chef Liu, selected by the government of Taiwan to represent the best in food that Taiwan has to offer in his travels throughout the world, presenting Taiwanese foods and preparation. Through special arrangement at the invitation-only affair, Chief Liu will travel to Miami in May to prepare and host the Chamber’s banquet for 200 guests. Eight varied courses will be prepared in varying delicate to robust styles accompanied by artistry and pageantry, a rare experience in the U. S. A silent auction to benefit Food for the Poor will also be held.
“In good times we always remember those less fortunate than us,” says Pedro Cheng, vice president of the “Friends of the Overseas Chinese” and “Community Service/Volunteer” Awards program. ALSO awards will be presented to community leaders in South Florida. DOCBC brings together business owners in Doral and outlying cities who transact business with greater China. Its mission is to help its members succeed through advocacy, information, networking, and business support services. Founded in September 2010 as a nonprofit organization, the chamber holds an annual gala celebrating Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, a charity golf tournament known as the Asian CEO Invitational, and 10 networking and business development cocktail receptions per year. For details, visit <www.doralocbc.com>.
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UnitedHealthcare Adds 125 at New Doral Center
At UnitedHealthcare opening are (l-r) Keith Vollberg, Lori Halpern, “Dr. Health E. Hound,” Rep. Jeannette Nunez, Sen. Rene Garcia, Tamika Wallace, Center Manager and Rep. Ana Rivas Logan. (Photo by Randy
Borges Photography) –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
UnitedHealthcare has opened a new Call Center at 7600 NSW 19 St. in Doral that will employ approximately 125 area workers. The new facility will provide customer service support to more than 165,000 Floridians enrolled in the firm’s Community Plan of Florida and beneficiaries of the company’s Florida Healthy Kids, Long Term Care, Medicare/Medicaid and Medicaid programs. Currently, the company employs more than 5,000 Floridians to assist more than two million members statewide to live healthier lives. “In today’s tough economy, economic development is a high priority. I would like to thank UnitedHealthcare for its commitment to the people of South Florida by creating jobs and opportunities,” said Sen. Rene Garcia (R-Hialeah) District 40. “The creation of over 120 jobs is a great thing for the constituents of my dis-
trict and Miami-Dade County. “Creating 125 local jobs is a great step in the state’s promise to further economic development, stimulate the market and get Floridians back to work,” said State Rep. Jeanette Nunez (R-Miami). The legislators spoke as UnitedHealthcare hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony and grand opening celebration Apr. 20 for local officials and call center employees. “Our employees at this new call center will help broaden our reach to the more than 160,000 Medicaid beneficiaries who depend on us for helping them access the quality and affordable health care programs and services they deserve,” said Kathleen Crampton, president and CEO for the Community Plan of Florida. Serving more than 38 million people, the parent United Health Group (NYSE: UNH) is a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company.
Doral-Based Grand Opera Fund Raiser Set May 19 The Crescendo Circle, Florida Grand Opera’s young professionals group, invites all to attend “Voices in the Vineyard”, a memorable night of live music, delicious food, and fabulous cocktails on May 19 at 8 p.m. The annual end-of-the-season event to benefit FGO takes place at Magnum
Restaurant, a setting reminiscent of the Moulin Rouge and filled with a Belle Époque charm. Tickets are $75 for Circle members; $85 for non-members when purchased in advance or $100 at the door. For reservations and information, tel. 786-866-5804 or email <email@example.com>.
Community Association Beat
Upgrade your community with new CAM education BY MITCH DRIMMER, CAM Community Association Manager
Most condominium and homeowner associations are managed by a licensed manager, either through a management company, or individually-managed. Such managers are the “CEO” of the association, and although answerable to a board of directors, each must be licensed and should be well-versed in attendant responsibilities. Florida requires community association managers to be licensed by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. The manager’s license is called a CAM (Community Association Manager), obtained after taking an 18-hour course at an approved school and passing a state test. However, there‘s a good deal more to know about association management than what can be taught in just a few days, even in the best schools. Licensed CAMs are required to take a certain amount of Continuing Education Units (CEU) during their tenure, allowing them to renew their license. But that, too, is still wanting in knowledge needed for the increasing complexities involved in managing Florida communities. Enter: A new initiative just rolled out to prepare association managers for the daunting task of managing more efficiently. Florida Community Association Professionals, a Florida initiative, is dedicated to raising the level of professionalism among managers. A new educational concept it offers is brilliant as it is simple: service providers to community associations will provide Florida-specific training at all levels of the community association industry. Without a sales pitch involved, these experienced service providers gathered together in one place will instruct managers in their specialized fields. The concept brings together association servicing experts with CAMs for an unparalleled learning opportunity. Ms. Betsy Barbieux, the program founder, developed the concept with the cooperation of the Florida Community Association Journal.
“Boards of Directors and professional regulators are unhappy with the quality of education of new managers,” said Ms. Barbieux in a recent interview. “Actually, no education is required, not even a GED diploma. They simply need to be 18 years old and complete an 18-hour pre-licensing course that prepares them to sit for the state exam. “They are not required to have any background in accounting, human resources, budgeting, construction, maintenance or law. Currently, the Regulatory Council is reluctant to legislate more education in today’s economy,” she pointed out. And that’s why there is most definitely a need for this education. Managers, management companies, and associations should make this investment in their time, not just among current managers but to upgrade association knowledge, as well. This 40-hour advanced studies program was created to bring a new level of excellence to an industry that is getting more and more complicated. Most significant about this educational opportunity is that it is Florida-specific and that is what makes it stand out. So there you have it – board of directors! A new way to ensure that your manager is up to date and properly- versed in the details of managing your community association. To learn more about the program, go to <www.fcaponline.net> or tel. 561-2778152 to get more information. Background yourself on this opportunity to keep your association on top of community management by having your management better informed. Having been selected as an instructor at this school, I hope to see your manager take part in this outstanding opportunity. Mitch Drimmer, a licensed CAM and FCAP instructor, is Vice President of Association Financial Services, an accredited collection agency specializing in finance, business process outsourcing and community association management. For more information, visit <www.associationfinancial.com> or tel: 305-677-0022, ext. 804.
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‘Need a Lift’
Make the firm decision to start weight lifting BY BARI AUERBACH If you’ve been running, aerobicising or spinning your wheels doing endless hours of cardio – but still can’t seem to firm up – before you get totally exasberated with exercising, here’s some very “uplifting” news: Fitness plans that incorporate weight training can help everyone get toned, tighter, stronger and live longer! Men and women who routinely lift weights can reduce body fat, build muscle mass, strengthen bones, improve endurance for daily lifestyle activities and reduce their risk for heart disease. Fat Loss Benefits The average person who incorporates weight training into their fitness plan at least two times a week can gain almost two pounds of muscle and lose 3.5 pounds of fat within two months. Beyond boosting confidence, weight training can also boost your metabolic rate, making it possible to burn more calories throughout the day - even when resting. Strength Benefits Enhanced strength and endurance gained from weight training can make daily lifestyle activities easier and less tiring. The International Osteoporosis Foundation also emphasizes that people who engage in resistance training can build and maintain bone density, slow down the process that leads to osteoporosis and improve balance, strength and agility, thus preventing falls that can lead to fractures. ‘Personalized’ Training Many women are hesitant to start weight training programs because they’re afraid of becoming too bulky - but according to The American College of Sports Medicine, women’s estrogen levels prevent this from happening. A very common mistake women often
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Miami resident and Brigade 2506 historian Felipe Villaraus Gallo has published a comprehensive book on the ill-fated 1961 Bay of Pigs invasión entitled Invasion, Bahia de Cochinos, 50 Años Después. Villaraus is curator of the Cuba and the Cold War Study Institute at the new Military Museum and Memorial of South Florida, 12450 SW 152 St. His latest offering, Invasion, follows his first book Huellas y Caminos published in 2007. Villaraus says his Spanish-language Invasion is an historic book “with a good description and analysis of the events of April 17, 1961 and the reason for the disaster.” The book’s chapters deal with the three days of combat in Girón Playa Larga, Palpite and San Blas, and include a chapter dedicated to the Bay of Pigs soldiers who did not return from the battle.
Historian Felipe Villaraus Gallo
“Bay of Pigs’ latest Gallo history