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Business Briefs Page 6-7,10

November Breakfast Page 8

Leads Lunch Page 8-9

Business After Hours Page 9

Holiday Party Photos Page 15



From the President’s Desk...

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MIKE FREEMAN Chairman of the Board Whitney National Bank BILL LINDSLEY Chairman Elect Simple HR BRIAN HAUGEN Immediate Past Chair Emerald Coast Wealth Advisors of Raymond James & Associates AMY PERRY Treasurer Pleat & Perry, P.A. TIM EDWARDS Vice Chairman/Communications & Marketing Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar & Grill LES PORTERFIELD Vice Chairman/Community & Economic Development TEA, Inc. KATHY WHIDDEN Vice Chairman/Membership Development Emerald Coast Chiropractic MARY ANNE WINDES Vice Chairman/Harbor Association Real Estate Professionals of Destin Destin Fishing Fleet Marina DIRECTORS JIM BREITENFELD Breitenfeld Development Services, LLC SHAUN EUBANKS Community Bank, Destin BILL HEAD Fort Walton Beach Medical Center STEVE JAY O’Sullivan Creel, LLP ANDI MAHONEY White-Wilson Medical Center KAREN MCCARTHY Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union CYNDY THOMAS ResortQuest Vacation Rentals CAREY TROTTER Trotter’s General Contractors, Inc. CHAIRMAN’S APPOINTEES JOHN COMER Southern Restaurant Group, LLC MATT LINDLEY Sandestin Golf And Beach Resort SPECIAL APPOINTEE KIM WINTNER Alliance Association Management Co., Inc.

Shane A. Moody, CCE, 1OM As I sit here writing this, I wonder to myself where 2010 went? It seems every year goes by faster and faster. Maybe it’s that I’m getting older (hey, you are too!). Maybe it’s that my children make me not worry so much about time passing me by. Maybe it’s that I’m having a blast on my job and don’t pay as much attention to time. Whatever it is, 2011 is here! I must send a very special thank you to our 2010 Chairman Brian Haugen. His leadership early in the year was exactly what we needed – quiet, behind the scenes, letting the Chamber do what it does best. Then the oil spill occurred, and he adapted that leadership to being out in front, defending what was right for Destin. He stood by me

MANAGEMENT TEAM SHANE MOODY, CCE, IOM President and CEO ELIZABETH SPIES Vice President of Communications RISA GARNER Director of Events WENDY SCHAEFER Information Specialist SANDI MCCLANAHAN Membership Consultant


and battled the perception cast upon us by misguided national media. He represented our Chamber members with strong statements against drilling in Florida waters. He faced a situation none of us knew was coming. And as that settled down, he became the quiet leader again, doing what he needed to make sure the Chamber stayed on course in serving its members. Brian, thank you for your leadership, your friendship, and your support. Chairing a chamber is never easy, and you handled it well. And he couldn’t have done it without the support of our Board. They, too, deserve a big thank you. They kept the Chamber ship headed in the right direction. On Jan. 20, we’ll officially say good-bye to several of those Board members at our Annual Awards & Installation Banquet. Thanks to Shane Cannon and Ed McMullen for their work as Board members over the years, helping us promote Destin’s true gem, the Destin Harbor. A special thanks to Carmela Bell for her service after many years on the Board. Carmela has been

on the Board since I arrived seven years ago. She was on the search committee that hired me. It will be strange not having her in the Board meetings. I’d also like to thank Myra Williams for her seven years on the Board. She is a past Chairman of our Chamber. She, too, was part of my interview process. She will be missed. Also leaving the Board after a million years (it seems) is Kevin Bowyer. He’s a past Chairman, Treasurer, and whatever-elsewe-needed-from-him Board member. I’ve learned a lot from him over the past seven years. Not only is the Board losing a true leader, but it’s losing a true friend. To all of our retiring Board members, THANK YOU! You’ve been integral in the growth of our organization. Now we’re beginning a new year with a new Chairman. Mike Freeman of Whitney National Bank will lead our Board and organization through 2011. He’s already hit the ground running, sharing ideas and thoughts about how this organization is going to get even stronger. We’ve just come out of

our Board retreat. We’re taking a long, hard look at our programming and how we can change it for the better. We’re looking at new opportunities. We’re going to make some difficult decisions, but decisions that will make your Chamber better. Finally, thank you to our members. Through the difficulty of the past year, our membership numbers have actually grown. It’s because of you that we exist, that we operate, that we promote our local area to generate more business to strengthen our economy. We may call on you this year for your input and participation on some task forces. If we do, we hope you’ll accept our invitation. After all, it’s this kind of work that will allow us all to continue to build this world-class community one business at a time. With wishes for continued success, for a prosperous 2011, and until next month,

Chamber Statistics: Advertising our World-Class Community In our mission to support Destin as a world-class community, the Chamber’s Welcome Center recorded the following numbers:

• Visitors to Welcome Center Lobby – 261 • Visitors’ Guide & Buyer’s Directories Mailed – 116 • Relocation Packages – 9

November 2010 • Phone Calls/E-mails – 545 • Incoming Mail – 236

The Chamber’s website recorded 29,745 unique visitors for November 2010 and 604,623 unique visitors for Dec. 1, 2009 – Nov. 30, 2010.

Network, a supplement to The Destin Log, is published and printed monthly for the Destin Area Chamber of Commerce. 4484 Legendary Drive, Suite A, Destin, FL 32541 (850) 837-6241 -


A Message from the Chairman of the Board

Mike Freeman I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to put 2010 in the history books and start 2011 as your new Chairman of the Destin Area Chamber of Commerce. However, I can’t quite move forward just yet without thanking

Brian Haugen for his sheer determination and grit, while leading and navigating the Chamber through some pretty difficult times, namely the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster. Unfortunately, as someone reminded me, the only disaster to strike the beaches of the Emerald Coast was the national media and the over zealous reporting of gloom and doom. I tip my hat to Brian and his commitment and service to the Destin Area Chamber and the Destin community as a whole. Although, I have it from a pretty reliable source, Brian is looking forward to his new title as Past Chairman.

Looking Forward to 2011 In November, your Destin Area Chamber Board of Directors met for its annual retreat, which is a time for reflection and planning. The Board identified five areas of emphasis for 2011 and beyond. The first was a thorough evaluation of all events and programs supported and facilitated by the Chamber. The second was greater focus and attention on our area’s really special and unique asset known as the Destin Harbor. Third was determining how to best support the newly formed Sports Commission. The fourth was related to the LAMBDA rail, the highspeed tech highway, and

how the Destin area could benefit from it. Finally, greater emphasis and focus on economic development and diversity specific to the Destin area. I plan to discuss all five areas in greater detail as we progress through 2011; however, let me begin with the first one. As mentioned above, the number one goal was to evaluate Chamber programs and events, and, quite frankly, the Destin Seafood Festival was number one on the list for evaluation. The Board tasked and challenged the Chamber leadership to consider changes that would limit the demands on the organization’s financial

and human resources, while pursuing a structure and format that would extend the event’s longevity. Please understand, our decision to pursue a change with the Seafood Festival was not without great debate and consideration. We fully appreciate and understand the community’s benefit with the Destin Seafood Festival and its rich and celebrated tradition. I am excited about the future prospects of the Destin Seafood Festival and the long-term potential of the event along Destin’s historic harbor. I promise you, the stakeholders associated with the event are hard at work making my optimism

for the Seafood Festival a reality in 2011. Finally, I want to thank Shane and his loyal and dedicated staff for enduring the challenges associated with 2010, while positioning and preparing the Chamber’s entry into 2011. Fortunately, this is an extremely professional group with a glass is half full mentality. It gives me great comfort knowing they will be close by my side as we launch into a much anticipated and promising 2011.

Your 2011 Chairman, Mike Freeman Whitney National Bank

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Visit or call 850-864-0213 for more information. 2064805




Member Spotlight

Please join us for our Business to Business Breakfast. Check-in begins at 7:15 a.m. Cost is $15 for members who RSVP, $20 for members that attend without registering, and $30 for non-members. Please visit the Events Calendar at to register. All registrations are due by Jan. 11. JANUARY


Join us for the January Leads Lunch. Enjoy networking activities to meet potential clients and reconnect with old friends! All members are encouraged to attend. The cost to attend is $20 for members and $40 for non-members. Please visit the Events Calendar at www.DestinCham to register. All registrations are due by Jan. 17. JANUARY


“Supporting military families in their time of

need” is the Fisher House of the Emerald Coast’s greatest contribution to our area, explained Fisher House president Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Joe Oder. The house supports America’s military, veterans, and their families during a medical crisis by providing free lodging while a family member is in the hospital on Eglin Air Force Base. It is a a 501(c)(3), not-forprofit organization, relying on charitable contributions.

The Destin Area Chamber of Commerce will celebrate the successes of 2010 and welcome in 2011 during the Annual Awards & Installation Banquet. The Chamber will also present its most prestigious awards and introduce the 2011 Chairman and Board of Directors. The Chairman’s Reception begins at 6 p.m.; seating will be at 6:45 p.m.; and food stations will open at 7 p.m. Held at Linkside Conference Center at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, the cost is $75 per person. Corporate Tables are also available. The event is black tie optional. To RSVP, call 837-6241 by Jan. 14.

Joe Oder Fisher House of the Emerald Coast Within the organization, Oder most enjoys organizing its board members for charitable events. Oder received his Bachelor of Science in Geology and Master of Science in Economics. He is a licensed Realtor with Prudential Coastal Properties and is a member of the Army Engineer Association and the American Legion #0296. He currently serves on the Destin Area Chamber’s Military Affairs

Committee. For more information, you may contact Oder at (850) 502-0496 or visit





Chamber Board of Directors Meeting will be held in the Chamber conference room at 11:30 a.m.

To thank all of our members for their support of this Chamber and the Destin area, Jan. 25 is being declared ‘Destin Area Chamber Member Appreciation Day’ by the Destin Mayor and City Council. On that day, Board members, Ambassadors, and staff will personally visit every member in the Destin area to thank them for their support. 2011 membership directories and door decals, along with a lot of other helpful Chamber-related information, will be delivered. To find out more information or get involved please contact Vice President of Communications Elizabeth Spies at (850) 8372711 x5 or email at JANUARY


The Destin Area Sports Commission presents Destin’s first Bayou, Bay & Back 5K/10K Run/Walk. The race will begin at Clement Taylor Park in Destin at 8 a.m., rain or shine. Awards will be presented to the overall winners, both runners and walkers, male and female, as well as to winners in 13 age categories. Registration is $25, if completed by Jan. 28, and is $30 on race day. JANUARY


For information about all Chamber events, please visit the Events Calendar at PAGE 4

Military Affairs Committee

Buy Destin Program FREE for All Members By far and regardless of the season, the most popular question in the Destin Area Chamber’s Welcome Center is “do you have any coupons?” Our Buy Destin Program, created in 2009, was designed to answer this question, while providing new customers to Chamber member businesses. To increase the program’s effectiveness and add value to all Chamber memberships, the program is free for all members to participate. Chamber members are asked to provide incentives, discounts, and coupons in 50 words or less or provide a 3.5” x 1.5” coupon in a jpg or pdf. The Chamber will add these to our Buy Destin booklet, available in the Chamber lobby for $5. The target for this booklet is area visitors, businesses, and residents. For more information or to sign up to participate, please visit or contact Elizabeth Spies at (850) 837-2711 x5 or

During the Chamber’s Dec. 1 Military Affairs Committee (MAC) meeting, Capt. Ben Galloway (center) from Hurlburt Field’s 1st SOW Maintenance Group shared some of his adventures in Afghanistan. Shown here are MAC Chair Kim Wintner (left), Alliance Association Management Co. Inc., and 1st SOW Maintenance Group Honorary Commander Karen McCarthy, Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union. NETWORK JANUARY 2011

Destin Business Forum In partnership with Cox Communications, the Chamber’s monthly TV program will host the following organizations beginning in January: Air Force Enlisted Village, Inc. 92 Sunset Lane Shalimar, FL 32579-1000 (850) 651-3766 Category: Non-Profits Chamber Rep: Scarlett Bauman

Mary Kay Independent Consultant Team Leader - Sheri McDonald 606 Fifth St. Destin, FL 32541 (850) 240-1758 Category: Cosmetics Chamber Rep: Sheri McDonald

Destin Snowbirds Inc. Destin Community Center 101 Stahlman Ave. Destin, FL 32540 Category: Non-Profits Chamber Rep: Paul Hewitt

S and B Marketing 7529 Los Padres Trail Ft. Worth, TX 76137 (817) 503-9225 Category: Marketing Consultants & Firms Chamber Rep: Steve Moffett

Chairman’s Report Mike Freeman Fort Walton Beach Medical Center O’Sullivan Creel, LLP

Host Amy Perry Pleat & Perry, P.A. Destin Business Forum airs on Cox Channel 6. The schedule is available online underneath the Channel 6 heading:

Chamber to show appreciation for member support On Jan. 25, officially named Destin Area Chamber of Commerce Member Appreciation Day by a Proclamation to be issued by the Destin City Council, Chamber Board members, Ambassadors, volunteers, and staff will visit every Chamber business in the Destin area to say thank you for its support throughout the year. Appreciation packages, including the

Chamber’s 2011 membership directory and door decal, along with a thank you letter, benefits brochure, list of upcoming events, and more, will be delivered. If you would like to visit area businesses as part of this day, please contact Elizabeth Spies at (850) 837-2711 x5 or




Business Briefs Emerald Coast Conference Center Changes Name The Emerald Coast Conference Center will become the Emerald Coast Convention Center to better reflect the space and services it offers. The staff will still provide the same exceptional service with state-of-the-art A/V equipment to enhance events, and the catering department will continue to delight with mouth-watering dishes and warm hospitality.

Fort Walton Beach Medical Center Implements New Treatment of PAD Fort Walton Beach Medical Center is the first hospital in the Tri-County area to offer a new treatment option for people suffering the debilitating effects of Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD). John C. Dali, MD, a surgeon on staff at Fort Walton Beach Medical Center, has played a pivotal role in demonstrating the safety and effectiveness of this new technology and its ability to provide new hope for treating PAD, which is a potentially life-threatening condition where a fatty material called plaque builds up on the inside walls of the blood vessels that carry blood from the heart to the rest of the body, including the brain, heart, and legs.

Fort Walton Beach Medical Center Offers iTriage Fort Walton Beach Medical Center partnered with iTriage®, a mobile acute care decision tool that empowers consumers through the use of their mobile devices to evaluate symptoms, research diseases and procedures, and find appropriate locations for treatment, including physician offices and nearest emergency rooms, as well as other healthcarerelated information. Smartphone users can download iTriage from the app store for the iPhone® and from the market for Android™ or access iTriage at


Howard Group Signs Carr, Riggs & Ingram to Grand Boulevard

Steve Riggs, partner of CRI, and Merlin Allan, VP of real estate for Howard Group

Howard Group, a leading real estate development company specializing in premier commercial, hospitality, and residential developments, has announced an agreement with Carr, Riggs & Ingram, LLC, (CRI) to relocate its Destin office to Grand Boulevard at Sandestin’s Town Center. One of the Southeast’s largest and most prestigious accounting firms, CRI will relocate approximately 50 CPAs to its new 11,500-square-foot office in late December.

Newman-Dailey Names Agency of Record Newman-Dailey Resort Properties, Inc., contracts Cornerstone Marketing & Advertising, Inc. – The Idea Boutique®, a full-service advertising and public relations firm located in Grayton Beach, Fla., in an undertaking that will rebrand the resort management company’s newest client, Hidden Dunes Beach & Tennis Resort, located in Destin.

Silver Sands Recognizes November Employee of the Month Silver Sands Factory Stores recognized landscaping manager Dennis Horgan, who has been working for Silver Sands for 10 years, as its November Employee of the Month. Horgan is committed each day to making the shopping center look beautiful and run efficiently by managing and completing a number of landscaping and maintenance projects. He is an essential member of the Silver Sands opera-

tions team, who has a keen eye for improving the center aesthetically, and is known for coming up with ideas to make Dennis Horgan projects run more efficiently and productively for his team.

White-Wilson Medical Center Raises the Roof for New MRI On Nov. 30, White-Wilson Medical Center raised part of the roof of its MRI Center on the corner of Mar Walt and Hospital Drive to make way for its new Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner. The new MRI is a Siemens Essenza, and White-Wilson is the first medical facility in the entire Northwest Florida region to have it. The new MRI offers advanced technology and increased patient comfort with a larger opening and shorter scan time.

700 Brews and BBQ Fans Filled HarborWalk Village on Destin Harbor On Nov. 13, the competition was hot on the Destin Harbor at the 3rd Annual Blues, Brews, and BBQ festival. The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association’s Northwest Florida chapter hosted a craft beer tasting and creative BBQ competition at HarborWalk Village. The event’s proceeds, more than $2,600, benefited Alaqua Animal Refuge. The competition was tight with over a dozen creative barbecue dishes from local member restaurants. Local judges included Mark Bellinger, director of the Okaloosa TDC; Mike Stenson, general manager of Northwest Florida Regional Airport; Laurie Hood, founder of Alaqua Animal Refuge; Suzy Nicholson Hunt, general

manager of Qantum Broadcasting; Meagan O’Halloran, WJHG reporter; and Larry Phelps, president of the Emerald Coast Parrot Head Club. Emerald Grande was awarded “Best Traditional BBQ.”

Hilton Hires Karen Cooksey as its Director of Sales and Marketing Karen Cooksey has joined the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, as director of sales and marketing. In this role, Cooksey will be responsible for overseeing the coordination, management, and leadership of the hotel’s overall sales and marketing strategies and initiatives, leading Matthew Price, director of sales and event planning; Nancy Stanley, director of marketing and communications; and Tony Steele, director of revenue management. Cooksey joins the Hilton Sandestin Beach with more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry and possesses a plethora of knowledge and expertise in multi-unit sales and marketing, having Karen Cooksey worked for small boutique hotels to diverse multinational entities, in both domestic and international markets.

Seagar’s GM Awarded Wine Specialization Designation Kevin Moran, general manager of Seagar’s Prime Steaks and Seafood, located at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, was recently awarded the designation of Certified Wine Specialist by the Society of Wine Educators. Prior to receiving the certification, Moran was tested by the society for his academic knowledge and mastery of key elements regarding

wine. The society reports only 51 percent of those who take the exam receive a score that merits certification. One of Northwest Florida’s only certified sommeliers, Moran has more than 30 years in the hospitality industry. He has traveled extensively, including overseas, and uses his knowledge and experience to maintain the integrity and high standards of Seagar’s, which was the first restaurant in the region to receive AAA’s Four-Diamond rating.

Serenity by the sea Welcomes Hair Stylist Loyd Carlyle Serenity by the sea, the spa at the Hilton Sandestin Beach, is pleased to announce that Loyd Carlyle has joined its team as a hair stylist. Carlyle, who has more than 15 years of experience in the hairstyling industry, is a Vidal Sassoontrained master colorist and stylist who currently serves as an educator for Schwarzkopf, a world-renowned color line used at Serenity by the sea’s full-service salon. Prior to joining Serenity by the sea, which was most recently awarded with Emerald Coast Magazine’s “Best Spa” designation by the “Best of the Emerald Coast” 2010 Readers’ Choice Poll, Carlyle served as the artistic director at Fusion Spa Salon at Grand Boulevard at Sandestin® and previously as the artistic director at G. Carlyle Salon in North Carolina.

Hard Rock Café Raises Money for Breast Cancer Research

Team Hard Rock Café raised $637 during the Making Strides for Breast Cancer Walk. See BRIEFS on page 7 NETWORK JANUARY 2011

BRIEFS Continued from page 6

Hard Rock Café Recognizes Employees of the Month

Tierra “T” Young

Luke Wagnon

Hard Rock Café recognized its October Hard Rockers of the month. Back of the House Rocker was Tierra “T” Young and Front of the House Rocker was Luke Wagnon.

Hard Rock Café Donates to Destin Harvest Hard Rock Café raised more than 300 lbs of non-perishable items for Destin Harvest in support of World Hunger Year. This is part of Hard Rock International’s 2010 worldwide IMAGINE THERE’S NO HUNGER campaign, a partnership with John Lennon’s wife, artist and musician Yoko Ono Lennon, to benefit WhyHunger in its fight against childhood hunger and poverty around the world.

Recognition Luncheon on Nov. 11. Destin Mayor Sam Seevers presented award certificates to volunteers in attendance. Volunteers with 500 + hours included Joyce LaFountaine, Mike Long, and Dave Steele. These volunteers received a Museum Volunteer Recognition Award and the President’s Volunteer Service Award, which included a certificate, a letter from the president, and a lapel pin. John Lefler received a Museum Volunteer Award for 300+ hours, and Dave Fraser received a Museum Volunteer Award for 100+ hours. Additional awards were presented to Terry Long, Tona Newland, Scott Griffith, Mary Wilkinson, Faye Nettles, Connie Walter, Denise Ingram, Judy Lefler, Kemmy Meyers, A.J.’s Seafood & Oyster Bar, and Harry T’s Lighthouse.

Junior League Changes Children’s Lives During Clothing Project

Sinfonia’s ArtStrings Opens to Rave Reviews Sinfonia Gulf Coast’s ArtStrings opened to rave reviews on Friday, Nov. 12, in a private reception for sponsors, community and arts leaders, and Sinfonia patrons. More than 150 guests enjoyed a sneak peek of the 24 painted violins and more than 250 violin cutouts created by local elementary school children.

UWF Receives Grant to Explore Challenges of Aging The Florida Board of Governors announced a $350,000 award to the University of West Florida (UWF) to explore the challenges of aging in Northwest Florida. The award is part of the New Florida Initiative, an effort to better leverage and capture the collective intellect in our public universities to continue to enhance the state’s economic outlook and quality of life. UWF’s program is one of 31 funded projects from the $10 million awarded.

New Website Highlights Career Information and Educational Requirements

Museum Recognizes Volunteers

A.J.’s Seafood & Oyster Bar hosted the Destin History & Fishing Museum’s Volunteer

students are chosen by their teachers and guidance counselors.

The Junior League of the Emerald Coast (JLEC) completed its signature community project – Child Clothing – on Oct. 26 – 27, marking the 32nd year. Three hundred twenty-six disadvantaged Okaloosa and Walton county elementary students were treated to a morning shopping spree at Target in Mary Esther. The students received a full wardrobe, lunch, games, and arts activities. The

Residents of Northwest Florida now have access to a new, easy-touse online tool providing information about high-wage, high-impact career fields, as well as salary information, job openings, and educational programs in Northwest Florida. The Career Pathways website allows Northwest Florida residents to search for careers in fields that interest them and then


Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast has been selected by Press Ganey Associates, Inc., as winner of the 2010 Summit Award, given to hospitals that lead the nation in patient satisfaction. The Summit Award is the healthcare satisfaction industry’s most coveted symbol of achievement, recognizing top performing facilities that sustain the highest level of customer satisfaction for three or more consecutive years. Sacred Heart Hospital

4th Annual Leading Women Symposium & Golf Event Supports Women’s Scholarships The fourth annual “Leading Women Symposium and Golf Event,” presented by Northwest Florida State College, was held recently at Sandestin Golf and Beach Club. The women-only event was a tremendous success with nearly 100 women participating and raising more than $8,000 that will be used towards scholarships for women that attend Northwest Florida State College. Organized by the Northwest Florida State College Foundation and a volunteer committee comprised of women from several local businesses, the event provides scholarships for women’s educational programs, including the college’s Women’s Educational Resource Center (WERC), teacher education programs, and support for women to participate in NWF State College Leadership Institute programs. Event sponsors included Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union; AT&T Florida; Beacon Resorts; ECCO Motors; Edward Jones; First Florida Bank; Fleet, Spencer & Kilpatrick, P.A.; Gulf Power; Keefe, Anchors, Gordon & Moyle, P.A.; Merrill Lynch; O’Sullivan Creel, LLP; Pleat & Perry, P.A.; Regions Bank; Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort; and White-Wilson Medical Center. See BRIEFS on page 10

Let them know they can trust you Your Better Business Bureau Serving Northwest Florida had inquiries from over consumers last year.


ROBERT E. MCGILL, III 36008 Emerald Coast Pkwy. • Suite C Destin, Florida 32541

Sacred Heart Hospital Receives National Award for Second Year

on the Emerald Coast is one of 36 hospitals nationwide to receive this year’s award for inpatient services.

Consumers trust us

Law Offices ROBERT E. MCGILL, III, P.A. ®



investigate the educational requirements and career opportunities available in the region. This tool has been developed through the WIRED Northwest Florida Initiative as a result of that research. A federally-funded, US Department of Labor grant was awarded by Florida’s Great Northwest and was initiated by the Northwest Florida Higher Education Presidents’ Coalition (NFHEPC), a consortium of presidents from educational institutions across Northwest Florida. Consortium partners, including Chipola College, Gulf Coast Community College (GCCC), Northwest Florida State College (NWFSC), Pensacola State College (PSC), Tallahassee Community College (TSC) and the University of West Florida (UWF), were tasked with developing a common web portal to address career and workforce needs within Northwest Florida. The Career Pathways portal is located online at www.

850-837-1386 Fax 850-837-1574

7 in 10 consumers say they’d be

more likely to buy from a company Call designated as a “BBB Accredited 800.729.9226 Business.”* or start with for more information

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BRIEFS Continued from page 7

Kedroski To Lead NWF State College Foundation Northwest Florida State College (NWFSC) is pleased to welcome Cristie Kedroski as its director of College Advancement and College Foundation. Kedroski is responsible for leadership and oversight of all functions assigned to the Office of College Advancement, including external fundraising, alumni relations, special events, grant applications, scholarships, and the NWFSC Cristie Kedroski Foundation. Kedroski most recently served as the interim chief operating officer for Florida’s Great Northwest, a regional economic development organization representing 16 counties in Northwest Florida. Preceding her tenure at Florida’s Great Northwest, she worked for the Niceville Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce as the special events director.

G.S. Gelato Participates in NYC Press Event The National Association for the Specialty Food Trade (NASFT) presented the winners of its prestigious sofi Gold Awards at a special press tasting event at its offices in New York City on Nov. 9. G.S. Gelato’s Blood Orange Sorbet was one of 33 products on display at the event. G.S.’s Blood Orange Sorbet received a sofi Gold Award in the Outstanding Diet & Lifestyle Category for 2010. G.S. Gelato is the parent company of San Gelato Café.

Companion Animal Hospital of Destin Receives AAHA Accreditation Companion Animal Hospital of Destin received accreditation following a comprehensive evaluation by the American Animal Hospital Association. The evaluation includes a quality assessment review of the hospital’s facility, medical equipment, PAGE 10

practice methods, and pet health care management. Only 15 percent of all small animal veterinary practices in the U.S. have achieved accreditation by the American Animal Hospital Association. In order to maintain accredited status, Companion Animal Hospital of Destin must continue to be evaluated regularly by the association’s consultants.

WSRE Joins Public Media Partnership to Cover Gulf Coast Oil Spill WSRE, PBS for the Gulf Coast, is one of 10 PBS and NPR stations across the Gulf Coast region partnering to create the Gulf Coast Consortium, a multi-media project to expand reporting on the aftermath of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Operating under a $538,000 grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the collaboration includes lead station Louisiana Public Broadcasting; WBHM-FM, Birmingham, Ala.; Alabama Public Television; Mississippi Public Broadcasting; WEDUTV, Tampa, Fla.; WUSF-TV/FM, Tampa, Fla.; WWNO-FM, New Orleans, La.; WSRE-TV, Pensacola, Fla.; WVAS-FM, Montgomery, Ala.; and KRVS-FM in Lafayette, La.

National Endowment for the Arts Announces Grant Award to Sinfonia Gulf Coast Rocco Landesman, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, announced that Sinfonia Gulf Coast has been approved for a grant of $10,000 to support the organization’s Classical Connections series on Feb. 4, 2011. Sinfonia is one of 1,057 not-for-profit organizations recommended for a grant as part of the federal agency’s first round of fiscal year 2011 grants. In total, the Arts Endowment will distribute $26.68 million to support projects nationwide.

Sunshine Shuttle and Limousine Represents NW Florida at Worldwide Conference Sunshine Shuttle and Limousine was the representative com-

pany for Northwest Florida at the 2010 Limo Digest Show and Conference, the limousine and ground transportation industry’s premier international event of the year held in Atlantic City on Nov. 7 – 12. Both Sunshine Shuttle and Limousines owner and founder John Finch and head of operations Tony Rodriguez represented Northwest Florida as the ground transportation leaders for the region. Finch was recently elected to the Florida Limousine Association’s board of directors, a contributing voice in Washington and Tallahassee on legislation and issues affecting ground transportation in the workplace.

Cantrell Joins Emerald Coast Wealth Advisors of Raymond James & Associates Emerald Coast Wealth Advisors of Raymond James & Associates announced that Jennifer Cantrell joined the team in September 2010 as a client service associate. Cantrell received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Jennifer Cantrell the University of West Florida. Previously, she served as the executive director of the Roane School in Destin for 10 years. She will be assisting her team in all administrative, marketing, and client relation strategies.

Ultimate Chef America Delivers Seasoned Results A culinary competition of professional chefs was the focal point of an Optimum Life event at a senior living community in Jacksonville, Fla. Ultimate Chef America was held on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2010, and earned area senior living chefs awards for taste, creativity, and presentation. Dave Coalson, executive chef of Westwood

ment Resort in Fort Walton Beach was part of the Mission Nutrition Team, who took home the award for Best Taste and Best Creativity.

McCaskill & Company Event Benefits Junior League McCaskill & Company, the premier luxury jewelry retailer on the Emerald Coast, hosted a David Yurman special event benefiting the Junior League of the Emerald Coast Child Clothing Project on Dec. 10 – 11. In addition to having the opportunity to view the stunning display of the most popular items, guests received an exclusive gift from David Yurman with purchase. A portion of the proceeds from purchases went to the Junior League.

Shelter House for 25 years, and we just want to say thank you,” said Michelle Sperzel, executive director.

Local Dentist Donates Radio Ad to Fight Domestic Violence A local Santa Rosa Beach dentist is doing her part in the fight to end domestic violence, in both Okaloosa and Walton counties, by donating paid advertising on the radio. Dr. Tanya Orr of Gentle Breeze Dentistry, located on 30-A in Santa Rosa Beach, reached out to Shelter House and offered the air times

Twin Cities Hospital Donates to Sharing & Caring of Niceville

Boeing Employees Help Children in Crisis

The Fort Walton Beach Boeing Employee Foundation awarded a grant of $3,400 to Children In Crisis, Inc., (CIC) to purchase computer and educational equipment for at risk children living at the Children’s Neighborhood. This is the third grant from the foundation to help with CIC educational programs. Boeing employees presented the check to CIC executive director Ken Hair. Pictured from left to right are Danny Watford, Linda Haagen, Cindy Moore, Hair, Pam Tolar, and Mike Estes.

Local Domestic Violence Center Celebrates 25 Years of Service Shelter House, a local domestic violence center, celebrates 25 years of service in 2010. It celebrated the occasion on Dec. 15, with a free community BBQ. “The community has supported

Twin Cities Hospital recently donated $5,000 to Sharing & Caring of Niceville to help replenish the food bank and assist with other needs of the local organization. 2010 Dr. Frist Humanitarian Awards recipients Wayne Justice, MD, and Malinda Budden, RN, joined Twin Cities Hospital’s chairman of the board Louis Vagias, MD, to present the check to Delle Diamon, president of Sharing & Caring of Niceville, and Ronda Davenport, vice president of campaign/marketing, with United Way of Okaloosa and Walton Counties.

Fisher House Opens at Eglin Two years and one snip of the giant scissors later, the Fisher House of the Emerald Coast, a safe-haven for families of ill and injured service members, was dedicated at Eglin Air Force Base on Sept. 10. The new facility becomes the 47th Fisher House and is located only steps away from the Eglin hospital and veteran’s clinic. It provides free lodging to veterans and military families receiving treatment at military medical centers. NETWORK JANUARY 2011

All Clear Restoration & Remediation, LLC (800) 603-5971 Chamber Rep: Laura Wichern

Cobb Criminal Defense Law Firm, P.A. (850) 244-1625 Chamber Rep: Stephen G. Cobb

Good Time Tours (850) 476-0046 Chamber Rep: Vicki Stevison

R.S.V.P. Destin, Inc. (850) 837-6595 Chamber Rep: Travis Tucker

Amenity Services, Inc. (850) 654-9889 Chamber Rep: Darrell Blanton

Destin Charter Boat Association (850) 837-9734 Chamber Rep: Capt. Scott Robson

Gulfarium (850) 243-9046 Chamber Rep: Don Abrams

Real Estate Professionals of Destin, Inc. (850) 837-2211 Chamber Rep: Mary Anne Windes, CCIM, CRB, CRS, GRI, RRS, E-PRO

American Business Center, Inc. (850) 664-2101 Chamber Rep: Robbie Yeats

Destin Holiday Beach Resort (850) 837-6112 Chamber Rep: Steve Hunter

Holiday Inn on the Beach (850) 837-6181 Chamber Rep: Joe Farley

American Realty Of Northwest Florida, Inc. (850) 837-2181 Chamber Rep: Cindy Jo Holbrook

Destin Rotary Club (850) 687-0701 Chamber Rep: Les Porterfield

Indian Bayou Golf Club (850) 837-6191 Chamber Rep: Jim Carpenter

Bayside Surveying Company, Inc. (850) 835-2950 Chamber Rep: Scott Rosenheim

Destin RV Beach Resort (850) 837-3529 Chamber Rep: Dick Forsberg

Susie Kirkland (850) 837-5220 Chamber Rep: Susie Kirkland

Camping On The Gulf Holiday Tvl Pk (850) 837-6334 Chamber Rep: Mr. Pat O’Neill

Destin Woman’s Club (850) 897-4653 Chamber Rep: Kate Callicotte

Logo Mania (703) 815-7929 Chamber Rep: Vicki Hastie

Capt. Dave’s On The Gulf (850) 837-2627 Chamber Rep: Jane Marler Vayda

Dowd Title Group, LLC (850) 650-9900 Chamber Rep: John Dowd, Jr.

Newman-Dailey Resort Properties, Inc. (850) 837-1071 Chamber Rep: Jeanne Dailey

Carr, Riggs & Ingram, LLC (850) 837-3141 Chamber Rep: Skye Ehrhard

Downtown Destin Shopping Center (251) 342-8600 Chamber Rep: Cheryl Smith

Northwest Florida State College (850) 729-5212 Chamber Rep: Julie Cotton

Sugar Beach Interiors, Inc. (850) 837-5157 Chamber Rep: Karen Waterfield

Carter & Company CPA, LLC (850) 650-0125 Chamber Rep: Christine Carter, CPA

Jean Dutton (850) 862-3327 Chamber Rep: Jean Dutton

Ocean Reef Resorts (850) 837-3935 Chamber Rep: Mike Taylor

Today’s Fashion Boutiques (850) 837-5565 Chamber Rep: Jim Dettle

Carter Beach Properties (850) 269-1275 Chamber Rep: Craig Carter

Emerald Coast Foundation (850) 243-3800 Chamber Rep: Cayce Collins

Olin Marler Charter Boat Service (850) 837-7095 Chamber Rep: Olin Marler

Transaction One L.L.C. (850) 622-5881 Chamber Rep: Michael Smith

CenturyLink (850) 244-1150 Chamber Rep: Kevin Murphy

Emerald Coast Parrot Head Club (850) 420-6699 Chamber Rep: Larry Phelps

Paradise Key at Kelly Plantation (850) 650-5005 Chamber Rep: Tina Roberson

Walton County Tourist Development Council (850) 267-1216 Chamber Rep: Michele Ray

Chick-fil-A (850) 654-5534 Chamber Rep: Morris Loveland

Emerald Coast Vacation Rentals (850) 837-6100 Chamber Rep: John Butler

Pizza Hut (850) 269-2555 Chamber Rep: Sherry Wolkow

Wendy’s/Wendco Corp. (850) 837-9199 Chamber Rep: Roger Webb

Children In Crisis, Inc. (850) 864-4242 Chamber Rep: Ken Hair

First National Bank of Florida (850) 654-1477 Chamber Rep: Les Hahn

Pleat & Perry, P.A. (850) 650-0599 Chamber Rep: David B. Pleat, Esq.

Westwood Retirement Resort (850) 863-5174 Chamber Rep: Billie Chappell

Celebrating Ambassador Successes NETWORK JANUARY 2011

Regional Self Storage (850) 837-8717 Chamber Rep: Jack Jones Regions Bank - Main (850) 833-8422 Chamber Rep: Jason Wilbur Rels Title (850) 650-3130 Chamber Rep: Rick Miller Ruth’s Chris Steak House (850) 337-5108 Chamber Rep: Mike Sable Sporty Lady of Destin (850) 837-6763 Chamber Rep: Mary Beth Gunnerson

Congratulations to our Top Ambassadors for Nov. 2010: 65 pts – Richard Barrington, Holiday Isle Properties, Inc. 40 pts – Paul Woolman, Copy Systems Business Center, Inc.


The Destin Area Sports Commission presents Destin’s first Bayou, Bay & Back 5K/10K Run/Walk, set to take place Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011. The race will begin at Clement Taylor Park in Destin at 8 a.m., rain or shine. Awards will be presented to the overall winners, both runners and walkers, male and female, as well as to winners in 13 age categories. “This is the sports commission’s first big event, and exactly why the commission was formed,” explained Chamber President and CEO Shane Moody. “We’re advertising this on national websites that avid runners view frequently, as well as our other outlets. We think there is tremendous potential for these types of events. Destin is just a fantastic draw for sporting events. We’re hoping


to draw 150 or more folks from out of town to come in and run the race. If we can begin with those kinds of numbers with out-of-towners, the sports commission will be beginning to provide the kind of economic impact we hoped it would. Bringing people into town for events, such as these, and have them spend money on lodging, dining, shopping, and other activities over a weekend period can have a tremendous impact on our members and business community.” Prior to Jan. 28, the race registration fee is $25. Registration may be completed on, before Jan. 27, or by downloading the race brochure at www. On Jan. 29, the race registration fee is $30, and registration may be completed on site.

Please note that no bikes or pets will be allowed on the race course. Additional details may be found at For more information, please call (850) 837-6241.




Destin Getaways a Service of Crye-Leike Coastal Realty

4495 Legendary Dr. Destin, FL 32541 (850) 654-7700 Chamber Categories: Accommodations-Central Reservations; Accommodations-Golf & Tennis Resorts; Accommodations-Gulf Access Condominiums; Accommodations-Gulf Front Condominiums; Accommodations-Gulf Front Houses; Accommodations-Gulf View Condominiums; Accommodations-Pet Friendly; Real Estate

“When you give your pet fresh water, don’t throw the old water down the drain. Use it to water your trees or shrubs.”

Chamber Rep: John Paulsen

A message from:

Mary Kay Independent Consultant Team Leader Sheri McDonald

Jim Link DWU Board Member

606 Fifth St. Destin, FL 32541 (850) 240-1758 Category: Cosmetics Chamber Rep: Sheri McDonald

Destin Snowbirds Inc. Destin Community Center 101 Stahlman Ave. Destin, FL 32540 Category: Non-profits Chamber Rep: Paul Hewitt 2064806




FOR THE HOLIDAYS At Westwood Retirement Resort you can enjoy the sights, sounds and tastes of the holidays without all the fuss! We’ll make sure that you have a warm and festive holiday season full of activities, fellowship and fun. In addition to our resort lifestyle, our on-campus Healthcare Center provides short-term rehab or long-term care if you need it. So, stop by today and see why so many people call Westwood Retirement Resort ‘home’ for the holidays.

Independent Living Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Exceptional Experiences Every DaySM 1001 Mar Walt Drive Fort Walton Beach, Florida 32547

(850) 863-5174

Exceptional Experiences Every Day is a Service Mark of Brookdale Senior Living Inc., Nashville, TN, USA 18090-RES01-1110



Small Business Workshops The following workshops will be offered by the University of West Florida’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) during January 2011. For more information, please call the Fort Walton Beach SBDC at (850) 833-9400.

Starting a Business – This workshop will review business planning areas, such as financing, selecting a business legal structure, identifying your market, recordkeeping, and identifying risks that can challenge success. The speaker is Sharon Triplett, and the fee is $35. To reserve your seat, please call the SBDC at 833-9400. Jan. 6 - 1 – 4 p.m. 922 Mar Walt Dr., Ste. 203 Fort Walton Beach


SBA Loans – This is an overview of the SBA Guaranteed Loan Program and loan types. The speaker is Tom Hermanson, and the fee is $20. To reserve your seat, please call the SBDC at 833-9400.

Jan. 13 - 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. NWF/UWF Campus, Bldg. 1 Room 126 Fort Walton Beach


Chamber’s Annual Holiday Party on Dec. 7 at Fudpucker’s Beachside Bar & Grill

Thank you to Marianne Provazrik of M & M Photography T for being the official event photographer!

Thank You for the Door Prizes! Mary Kay Independent Consultant Team Leader - Sheri McDonald



January Calendar of Events January 3 Destin Snowbirds Big Registration Location: Destin Community Center Time: 2 – 4:30 p.m. Visit for more information. January 4, 11, 18, and 25 Destin Snowbirds General Meetings and Entertainment Location: Destin Community Center Time: 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. Visit for more information. January 5 Legally Blonde - Broadway Series Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Time: 7:30 p.m. Legally Blonde will take you from the sorority house to the halls of justice with Broadway’s brightest new heroine (and of course, her chihuahua, Bruiser). The verdict? This much fun shouldn’t be legal! The hilarious MGM film is Broadway’s new smash hit musical appearing as part of the first national tour of Legally Blonde The Musical! January 5, 12, and 19 Destin Snowbirds Registration – Wednesday Dates Location: Destin Community Center Time: 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. Visit for more information. January 6, 13, 20, and 27 Shelter House - Women & Money Workshop (WAM!) Location: Northwest Florida State College Time: 5 – 7:30 p.m. This workshop is FREE and open to any woman in the community. You will receive resources to help you gain control of your financial life, in addition to hearing from some of our community’s leading professionals in the financial field. January 7 Sinfonia 5 X 5 Location: Destiny Worship Center Time: 7:30 p.m. This Classical Connections performance features three of the most beloved pieces in classical music: Schubert’s whimsical Fifth Symphony, Rodrigo’s passionate Concierto de Aranjuez, and Beethoven’s immortal Fifth Symphony. Harpist Betsy Fitzgerald will be the guest artist for the Rodrigo. Tickets are $37.50.


January 9 Okaloosa Arts Alliance Wine & Hors d’oeuvres Reception Location: The Magnolia Grill Time: 2 – 4 p.m. Individual tickets are $15 or two tickets for $25 and are available at the door. All proceeds will benefit the Okaloosa Arts Alliance. There will be live entertainment and a raffle for a chance to win tickets to multiple local events. There will also be an OAA member information table. For more information, contact info@okaloo January 10, 24, and 31 Destin Snowbirds Registration – Monday Dates Location: Destin Community Center Time: 1 – 3 p.m. Visit for more information. January 11 Junior League of the Emerald Coast Recruitment Social Location: Gulfview Hotel Time: 6 – 8 p.m. The JLEC is actively seeking a diverse membership of women of all ages. Its current membership includes a broad array of women who bring many different talents and perspectives to the community. January 13 “Inspired by France” Wine Dinner Location: McGuire’s Irish Pub of Destin Time: 6:30 p.m. This wine dinner will be discussing how the French inspired the world of wine that we know today by taking French varietals and showing how California recreates them. Cost is $65 per person. For reservations, call (850) 654-7002. January 14 Chris MacDonald’s Memories of Elvis in Concert Rockin’ Birthday Bash Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Time: 7:30 p.m. In celebration of what would have been Elvis’s 76th Birthday, for one night only, Chris MacDonald will pay tribute to the King of Rock-n-Roll in a truly dynamic multi-media presentation complete with costumes and a high-energy concert band.

January 16 The Color Purple - Broadway Series Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Time: 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The only national show of the Mattie Kelly Arts Center’s 2010-11 season to appear in two performances – enjoy your choice of a matinee showing or an evening performance! It is based on the classic Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker and the moving film by Steven Spielberg. January 16 – February 20 Beauvais Lyons, Association for Creative Zoology Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Galleries Time: Monday – Thursday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Sunday 1 – 4 p.m. Exhibit features brilliant and beautiful prints by Beauvais Lyons, curator of the Hokes Archives at the University of Tennessee. Free and open to the public. January 16 – February 20 die Wunderkammer Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Galleries Time: Monday – Thursday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Sunday 1 – 4 p.m. In the Holzhauer Gallery, the “die Wunderkammer” exhibition will convert the gallery into a large-scale cabinet of curiosities with rarely-seen objects and works from NWF State College’s Permanent Collections. Free and open to the public. January 20 Florida: Then and Now Free Lecture Series - Focuses on Oil Spill, the Environment, Sustainability Location: Niceville Community Center Time: 7 p.m. A series of free public lectures by state and local experts that will explore various aspects of the recent Gulf oil spill from metaphysical to environmental and economic perspectives. Susan Cerulean, a writer, naturalist, and activist, will speak. January 22 Gumbo Contest & Silent Auction Fundraiser Location: Destin History & Fishing Museum Time: 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Area restaurants and individuals compete for the title of the best gumbo on

the panhandle. The event will include live music from local musicians and a silent auction. Come sample all the area’s finest gumbo and cast your vote for the People’s Choice Award. Advanced tickets are available at the Museum for $10 per adult. For more information, call (850) 837-6611 or email January 22 Shelter House Carrabba’s Cooking Class Location: Carrabba’s Italian Grill Time: 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Carrabba’s Italian Grill opens its doors exclusively to you. The talented chefs will teach you how to create signature Carrabba’s recipes, while you enjoy some of its tantalizing wine selection. After the cooking demonstration, you will be treated to a full lunch. Tickets are $40 per person. Don’t miss this unique Italian culinary and wine experience! January 26 Charlotte’s Web – Children’s Show Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Time: 9:45 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. This is a national touring children’s show for school groups. Limited seating for others may be available for $6 each. Call (850) 729-6065. January 27 All Shook Up Location: Mattie Kelly Fine & Performing Arts Center Time: 7:30 p.m. It’s a square little town until a motorcycle ridin’, guitar playin’, and hip swivelin’ hunk rides in and has everyone jumpin’ out of their blue suede shoes in All Shook Up. It’s Footloose, Grease, and Happy Days all rolled into one zany story! With more than 24 Elvis hits, All Shook Up kick starts a chain reaction of romances and rebellion through the power of rock ‘n roll music! It’s like an Elvis movie... but better! January 28 United Way’s Denim & Diamonds Annual Dinner and Silent Auction Location: Emerald Coast Convention Center Time: 6:30 p.m. For the past 10 years, the United Way has held a dinner and silent auction event that has proven to be the largest fundraiser for the United Way and its 40 partner agencies. Visit for details.


January 2011 Network Newsletter  
January 2011 Network Newsletter  

News, events, and photos from the Destin Area Chamber of Commerce