Page 1

inside this issue

Business After Hours: August event creates balance. Page 3

Going Green: Catalyst Campaign one year later. Page 4

Small Business of the Month: Find out who is this month’s winner. Page 5

FORUM FOR BUSINESS monthly Buy Lakeland. It makes good cents! • visit


October 2010

Vol. XX, No. 10

History 101:

First Lakeland Home of the Mine & Mill Supply Co. (author’s photo)

Lakeland’s Mine & Mill Supply Company By Richard A. Fifer

industrial supplies to all of Central Florida.

Bone Valley Historian

This month, one of the oldest, continually-operating companies in Polk County celebrates its 101st anniversary. The Mine & Mill Supply Company was incorporated under the name Mulberry Explosives and Supply Company on October 28, 1909. It began as a supply company for the many sawmills and phosphate mining companies in the Mulberry area. Through sound business practice and outstanding leadership, it has grown and adapted. It now provides

Charles C. Martin and Alexander B. Hull Jr., seeking a way to capitalize on the booming phosphate mining business around Mulberry, started the supply company with a capitalization of only $3,000. They soon built a warehouse in south Mulberry and began selling dynamite, dynamite caps, nitroglycerin, and blasting powder to the phosphate mining companies.

Bright House Networks Presents the 20th Annual Lakeland Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament Our famous 6 person Scramble will be held on Thursday, November 18, 2010 At Lone Palm Golf Club Registration at 11a.m. — Shotgun Start at 12:00 Noon! Please see the insert for more information!

The business was a success, and by 1913, the company was a major supplier to both the See History, Page 2

ALSO INSIDE: Upcoming Events • EMERGE Lakeland • Ribbon Cuttings • Members on the Move

Histor y

(Continued from Page 1)

phosphate mining companies and the sawmills surrounding Mulberry. In addition to explosives, the company carried small items, such as blades, belts, chains, ropes, and tools. It also carried larger items, such as boilers, engines, pumps, and machinery. This growth prompted the directors to change the company’s name to the “Mine & Mill Supply Company” in 1916. By the early 1920’s, the Mine & Mill Supply Company had increased its customer list to include the citrus groves, packing houses, and canning plants. The company had outgrown the small warehouse in Mulberry, so in 1924, the company moved to new facilities in Lakeland having purchased approximately 4.5 acres south of the Atlantic Coast Line tracks at the corner of Central Avenue and Main Street. In addition to large warehouses, the company built a distinctive, large, red brick building, now known as the Joyner Building and currently owned by the Joyner Lumber Company. The collapse of the Florida Land Boom in 1926 hit the Mine & Mill Supply Company especially hard. Sales started to fall, and debts to the company went unpaid. These ills were compounded by the Great Depression that followed. However, the company survived for several reasons. Management had wisely diversified into the citrus industry, supplementing the business from the phosphate, mining and lumber industries. The belt-tightening initiated in 1926 carried through the 1930’s. Best of all, the company had good men in charge. By 1940, business was improving, Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce Forum For Business Monthly

Volume Information: October 2010 Vol. XX, No. 10

Joe L. Ruthven Chairman of the Board

Kathleen L. Munson Publisher & President

New Facility on Combee Road, 1967 (courtesy Mine & Mill Supply Company)

and the company prospered after World War II. 1946 was noted as the best year in the company’s history, 1947 was even better, and 1952 better still. The phosphate mines were expanding, and prices were going up. By 1966, the Mine & Mill Supply Company had outgrown its facilities on Central Avenue in Lakeland. In 1967, the company moved to new, modern facilities at 2500 South Combee Road in Lakeland. The 9-acre site, with offices and an 84,000 square-foot warehouse, allowed for ample future expansion. The move coincided with an initiative by the company to diversify its products even further. In addition to the citrus and phosphate industries, it supplied companies involved in fabrication, utilities, light and heavy industry. At this time, the phosphate industry accounted for approximately fifty percent of the company’s sales, but this percentage was decreasing. Phosphate mining was moving south, and the phosphate industry was entering an extended period of overproduction and depressed fertilizer prices. The Mine & Mill

Amy S. Wiggins Editor Kingston Partners Design No. 2

Supply Company’s decision to aggressively diversify proved to be a wise move. In 1972, the Mine & Mill Supply Company expanded further by acquiring the Bert Lowe Supply Company in Tampa. The name of the acquisition was maintained for the sake of customer recognition, and it operated as a whollyowned subsidiary of the Mine & Mill Supply Company. The Bert Lowe Supply Company store in Tampa was closed in 2003, and operations were consolidated into the company facilities on South Combee Road in Lakeland. Today, as it reaches its 101st birthday, the 38-employee company is guided by President R. Wayne Hart and Chairman of the Board Leon H. Handley. One employee, Glen Dixon, has been with the company since 1968. When the Mine & Mill Supply Company began operation in 1909, only 14% of homes had a bathtub. There were only 8,000 automobiles in the country. The average wage was 22 cents per hour. While much has changed over the past 101 years, the leadership of the company has ensured a successful navigation through the changing business environment. Congratulations to the Mine & Mill Supply company – and here’s to 101 more years!

August Business After Hours creates balance By Terry Ottinger

Vice President, Membership Development

Magnify Credit Union located at 961 E County Road 540 A hosted August’s “Eco-Zen” Business After Hours. In the County’s first net-zero energy building, the spirit of “Zen” was all around. Chamber member Shingetsu Sushi Bar & Grill provided wonderful Japanese food and sushi while member Party People Celebration Co. created a relaxing atmosphere

Crowd networks under colorful Zen decoration.

with paper lanterns and colorful streamers. Outside, members could participate in a Tai Chi demonstration. Of course, Magnify had wonderful door prizes in store, including an ice cream party gift certificate & their signature Eco-Zen basket. Magnify Credit Union and staff continues to WOW members and provide an excellent atmosphere for networking. Thanks to the entire staff for a job well done! (Photo Credit: Justin Green Photography)

Chamber director Corey Miller, Miller Construction Management, Inc. presents the plaque of appreciation to John Santarpia, Magnify Credit Union.

Politics in the Park will reward your creativity!

We want YOU…to come to Politics in the Park dressed in your version of American patriotism. Are you a Betsy Ross or an Abe Lincoln? What about George Washington? Lady Liberty? Let your imagination be your guide!

The Politics in the Park Committee has partnered with Southside Cleaners - Launderers to present this unique and fun opportunity. This year Southside Cleaners - Launderers will host a costume contest…with a pa-

triotic twist. The most creative costume wins one year or $2,400 of free dry cleaning from Southside Cleaners - Launderers. Yes, that’s right, ONE YEAR of FREE dry cleaning!

Embrace your creative side and come dressed as a person or a national symbol; your costume can even depict an event in our nation’s history. The idea is to be creative. You can compete as an individual or as a team. Judging runs from 6:00 until 7:30 p.m. The winner will be announced at 7:45 p.m. Contestants must be present to win. For more information, check out our ‘Politics in the Park’ Facebook page or contact Katie Daughtrey at the Chamber (863) 688-8551, Ext. 241.

Chamber teams up with Workforce Education to highlight Polk’s academies By Ashley Barnett

Analyst, Technical Facilitator/Marketing Workforce Education

The Workforce Education Division of the Polk County Public School District is pleased to host the WE3 Expo, bringing together businesses, K-12 educators and post-secondary leaders. On November 4, 2010, The Lakeland Center Exhibit Hall will be bustling from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with more than 200 career and technical program exhibits representing all Polk County high schools. Business partners will want to make reservations to attend a special breakfast held in Sikes Hall from 8 – 10 a.m. featuring keynote speaker Steve Scruggs of the Lakeland Economic Development Council. Polk’s academies are a major asset to economic growth, and this breakfast will address their current and future impact on economic development. There is no cost to attend the day’s events, but reservations must be made to secure a place at the Business Breakfast by calling (863) 519-8438. The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce is a partner in this event,

which aims to provide an opportunity for business leaders to learn more about the existing 30 career academies housed in our local high schools. Businesses are encouraged to attend to discover how they can collaborate with the career academies. The program provides a two way street for Polk’s businesses: academies benefit from business expertise and businesses benefit by identifying future interns and possibly employees who have been immersed in quality, industry-focused curriculum. The Chamber board of directors, at their 2009 Annual Planning Retreat, identified “Education and Talent Development” as one of the Key Strategic Initiatives to be addressed in 2010. Focusing on adding value to the community by supporting existing entities and their efforts to educate and train or retrain the local workforce, the KSI committee has been diligent in identifying supporters for Polk’s outstanding academy programs.

Since the inception of Polk Career Academies, John Small, Senior Director of Workforce Education has focused on building academies that not only promote student success, but also leave a lasting contribution to the local community workforce. The academy model is different from the traditional technical school. By personalizing education opportunities and cultivating relationships between education and the business community, career academies have proven to not only increase student achievement, but also are vital in retaining the talent pool to help sustain the local economy. Current career academy choices include: aeronautics, agriscience, business, energy, engineering, health, hospitality and tourism, industrial technology, information technology, public safety, and manufacturing. Career academies also provide a choice in education, allowing students to transfer to a program that appeals to their learning interests, and even allowing students to earn college credit while still in the K-12 system. There are also internship and industry certification opportunities. For additional information, log on to, and refer to the flyer in this edition of the Forum for Business Monthly.

One year later: Chamber, members support public green spaces On October 6, 2009, the Chamber, with the help of the companies to the right, dedicated 12 trees around Lake Mirror. As a part of the 2009 Catalyst Campaign’s “Growing Green” initiative, Florida-friendly maples were installed along the walk-way around the Lake. According to Brian Dick, the City of Lakeland’s Assistant Superintendent of Parks and resident “Urban Forestry Guy”, all but one of the trees are flourishing, and the one is most likely challenged by unfit soil from the filling station previously located nearby. Brian even snapped this picture of one of the Chamber-sponsored trees with just a hint of fall color showing.

Congratulations again to these sponsors for their commitments to Lakeland’s public green spaces! • 2010 Chamber Board Chair Joe L. Ruthven • EMERGE Lakeland • Florida Refuse Service • Folsom Construction • JSK Consulting, Inc. • Lakeland Electric • Leadership Lakeland Class XXVII • The Ledger • Magnify Credit Union • Saddle Creek Corporation • Turner Construction Company

No. 4

September Small Business of the Month Award presented

By Patricia Hendler City of Lakeland

Platinum Bank is a locally owned and operated commercial bank which has been providing financial products to the Lakeland community for more than 12 years. They have two locations in Lakeland with the main location at 724 South Florida Avenue near Palmetto Street. This is the location where you will find Ken Ely, President, Polk County. He will be to your left immediately upon entering the bank in his windowed office. This is surely one of the most visible executive offices in all of Lakeland. It is an example of the bank’s philosophy of offering personalized service to the small business customer. In their first 12 years of operations Platinum has provided more than $250 million in loans to the Lakeland community. In a further example of Platinum’s personal service goal, you will find that a phone call to any of their offices is answered by a person, not a mechanized system. When you come in the door, you are greeted by an employee who will guide you to the proper person to answer your questions. There are currently 13 employees in Lakeland and average employment with the bank has been six years plus. Employees are encouraged to get involved with local non-profit organizations as volunteers. Current involvement and support includes Girl Scouts, United Way, Big

Brothers/Big Sisters, Kiwanis, Sister Cities, Goodwill, and Leadership Lakeland. Platinum supports many of these organizations with sponsorships and donations as well. The community’s involvement in the business is represented by the Advisory Board which includes Buddy Fletcher, Joe P. Ruthven, Dale Jacobs, Don Stephens, Bob Harper, Marty Higgenbotham, Jeff Stokes, and Tom Moore. Lending decisions are made locally. Platinum Bank is a member of the Florida Bankers Association, the Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce, Chairman’s Circle, and Lakeland Economic Development Council. They

September Winner Platinum Bank 724 South Florida Avenue Lakeland, FL 33801-5233 (863) 616-1234 Phone (863) 327-8795 Fax

enjoy a solid reputation in the Lakeland community and plan to continue their service for many years. The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce congratulates Platinum Bank as the Small Business of the Month for September.

Small Business of the Month Award Committee Member, Patricia Hendler, City of Lakeland, present the September Small Business of the Month Award to Kenneth Ely, Platinum Bank. Also present to accept the award was Lynn Ellen Woods and Donald S. Laing.

CHAMBER MEMBERS… START YOUR ENGINES! The 2010 CarBQ Committee is pleased to announce planning for this year’s event has begun. Mark your calendar to fill up your tank with a delicious BBQ lunch at this year’s CarBQ Chamber fundraiser, November 19 at Tigertown. Need more information? Want to help? Call Katie Daughtrey at (863) 688-8551, Ext. 241 or email


Lakeland Fans Travel Nor th with the Tigers to suppor t them in Toronto!

Chamber Annual Meeting Thursday, February 3, 2011 5:30 p.m. The Lakeland Center The Chamber is excited to announce a very special Keynote Speaker from one of the Nation’s top companies. We aren’t telling just yet, but our speaker’s company is known for … • Having one of the most faithful customer bases in its industry • Treating customers like friends and family • Qualifying a customer service candidate for employment based on attitude, not experience • Creating a Vice President of Customers position • Making the job “fun” for employees • Three flying killer whales and the newest member of their family, “Florida One” which debuted in Tampa

Mike & Jill Mitchell, Publix Super Markets, Karen & Joe L. Ruthven, e Ruthvens, and Lonnie Brown, e Ledger

Jill & Mike Mitchell, Publix Super Markets, and Mayor Gow Fields, City of Lakeland

Jim Leyland, Detroit Tigers, Carol Barnett and Tim Cox, Publix Super Markets, Willie Horton, Detroit Tigers

You are now free to mark your calendars for a fun evening… DING!

Jim Leyland, Detroit Tigers and Joe L. Ruthven, e Ruthvens Rogers Centre—Blue Jays Home Field In Toronto

No. 6

Each month, the Chamber enlists the help of 20 volunteers to mentor new and current members with involvement in Chamber events and programs. This dedicated group of professionals is rewarded for their efforts through a Sheree Saulter points system, and the Champion with the most points is featured in the Forum for Business Monthly. This month, the Chamber staff would like to recognize Mrs. Sheree Saulter, Community Relations Coordinator with Webster University for her outstanding attention to Chamber members and attendance at events! Sheree is a wonderful asset to the Chamber and to the Lakeland community!







THURSDAY, OCTOBER 14 7:30 – 9:00 A.M.

$5 Chamber Member ~ $15 Non-Member Please R.S.V.P. by 5:00 p.m. the day prior to the event. You may register and pay using your credit card at or email to register and pay at the door. No. 8

August New Member Reception goes to the dogs By Terry Ottinger

Vice President, Membership Development

My Pet’s Animal Hospital located at 2225 Drane Field Road welcomed new members & Chamber guests for the August New Member Reception. New members listened to Chamber staff explain opportunities to promote their businesses through events, advertising and networking opportunities. Programs such as Chamber Champions and Leads Groups, along with a presentation from SCORE provided the perfect environment for business growth. Dr. Donna McWilliams, Owner of My

Dr. Donna speaks with Joy Baker of TD Bank, our Presenting Sponsor.

Pets, explained how the Chamber had helped her feel at home when she moved into the area. The staff at My Pet’s Animal Hospital took great care in making new members feel at ease with an organized venue and delicious refreshments. Thanks to everyone for a job well done!

TD Bank, the Presenting Sponsor for the series of New Member Receptions, is integral to the success of new members and the welcoming atmosphere at these events. Special thanks to TD Bank for their continued support of the Chamber and the development of its membership.

Members network immediately aer program.

2011 Board of Directors

ELECTION RESULTS The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce that the following business leaders were elected by the Chamber’s 1,700+ member businesses to serve on the Chamber Board of Directors, effective January 1, 2011. • Kurt Elmhorst (Allen & Company of Florida) • Melinda Harrison (Watson Clinic LLP) • Steve Madden (Madden) • Rev. Dan McBride (Victory Church) • Mike McGee (McGee Tire Stores, Inc.) • Dr. Sherrie Nickell (Polk County Public Schools) • Don Pickard (Pickard & Pickard, Inc., REALTORS) • Sam Sheets (Samuel G. Sheets and Associates, P.A.) • Kathy Wallen (Baylis & Company P.A., CPAs) • Phil Wegman (Furr & Wegman Architects, P.A.) • Mark Wilson (Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc.) • Jason Witty (Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida) The tremendous leadership and expertise of these individuals will be of great benefit to the organization in carrying out its mission: The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce is the leading organization dedicated to creating a climate where business can prosper. A special “thank you” to the following members who served on the Nominating Committee: Chairman Alice Hunt (Hunt Construction of Central Florida, Inc.), Immediate Past Chair Anu Saxena (KCI Technologies, Inc.), Past Chair Timothy F. Campbell (Clark, Campbell, Mawhinney & Lancaster, PA), board members Todd Baylis (Cipher Integrations, Inc.), Linda Jezard (Advantage Positioning) and Katrina Lunsford (Wachovia Bank, A division of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.).

No. 10

True MD hosts August Business and Breakfast By Terry Ottinger

Vice President, Membership Development

Business and Breakfast was held at True MD located at 3627 South Florida Ave. Marc Wilkes, Lakeland’s own motivational speaker and body builder Omega Man, encouraged members to be fit in mind and body. Several tests of strength proved that

with confidence and determination all things are possible. Following this demonstration Dr. Adam Parker, D.O. explained benefits of Botox injections, including control of migraine headaches. Thanks to the True M.D. staff for a wonderfully successful and always interesting and different Business and Breakfast.

Omega Man demonstrates strength and determination as he tears a phone book in half.

Dr. Adam Parker demonstrates a Botox injection.

Lakeland hosts prestigious East Coast Professional Showcase By Jackie Johnson

Senior Vice President, Convention & Visitors Bureau

Some of the BEST college baseball players across the Eastern United States demonstrated their potential at the East Coast Professional Showcase in August at our own Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland! It was the fourth consecutive year Lakeland was honored to play host to these tremendous players and scouts from every Major League organization and college in the country. The event is designed to evaluate and educate prospective players and parents hoping to attain their life-long goal of playing professional baseball. Annually, between 80 and 110 players from this event are selected into the Major League Baseball Draft. In 2010, 98 players realized that dream and were selected in the draft which included 11 first-round, 7 second round and 2 third round selections. Manny Machado (3rd), Delino Deshields, Jr. (8th), and Karsten Whitson (9th) were all top ten picks in the first round.

The event itself brought in more than $500,000 in economic impact to Lakeland and Polk County, in addition to some terrific public relations exposure on behalf of our community.

In fact, this year Bright House Sports Network televised one of the exciting games which replayed several times state-wide! Polk County Sports Marketing, The Detroit Tigers Organization, and The City of Lakeland all help sponsor this impressive event that just continues to showcase the sports excitement that Lakeland, Polk County and our own extraordinary sports complex, “Tigertown,� offer year round!

No. 12

Leadership Lakeland Class XXVIII Class Photo

Leadership Lakeland alumni, friends welcome Class XXVIII

By Carolyn Jackson

Senior Vice President, Member Relations

With more than 200 alumni and friends in attendance at the August Opening Reception, Class XXVIII Chair Nancy Cattarius (Class II, WONN/WPCV/ WLKF/WWRZ Radio) introduced the members of Leadership Lakeland Class XXVIII. Congratulations to the following members: • Jennifer Adams, Bank of Central Florida • Michael Barnes, Center for Retina and Macular Disease • Kindle Bowden, City of Lakeland • Richard Cardosi, Watson Clinic, LLP • Sharon Casey, Community Southern Bank • Jeff Chamberlain, Publix Super Markets • Denis Cole, Kerry Ingredients & Flavours • Chris Craig, The Salvation Army, Lakeland • Elliott Dorsch, Dorsch, Inc. • Kim Elmhorst, Junior League of Greater Lakeland • Kevin English, The NCT Group CPAs, LLP • Barbi Feldman, Ross Vecchio, P.A. • Karen Houtz, Community Bank of Florida

Class XXVIII Chair Nancy Cattarius, Station Manager, WONN/WPCV/ WLKF/WWRZ Radio • Tracy Kimbrough, Baylis & Company PA • Jeff Kincart, American Compliance Technologies, Inc. • Karen Kovach, Third Wing Business Strategies, LLC • Bruce Lyon, Swan Development Advisors, Inc. • Harold Maready, The Schools of McKeel Academy • Lori Martini, Community Foundation of Greater Lakeland

• Leticia Miller, Polk Museum of Art • Michael Peeples, Southern Homes of Polk County • Jason Rodda, Rodda Construction, Inc. • Bart Ross, tmr Agency • Jason Shepard, Heacock Insurance Group • Jack Strollo, Broadway Real Estate • Mark Talbott, Republic Services • Dale Terrell, Polk County School Board • Julie Townsend, Downtown Lakeland Partnership, Inc • April Williams, Integrity Insurance Agency | Word Alive Ministries • Mark Wilson, Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc. Together, these class members will complete a rigorous schedule of monthly daysessions from October through May. Each session features hands-on experiences that engage class members in all aspects of Lakeland and Polk County’s community. Leadership Lakeland is an annual program designed to identify leadership and enhance existing leadership in our community. The program unites leaders from diverse backgrounds and perspectives to improve their ability to lead effectively, offering its members a broad range of experiences and insights about the community, its people, its needs and its services.


e Chamber is proud to welcome 20 new members for August 2010 Through their membership in the Chamber, businesses invest in themselves and their community. We urge you to “Buy Lakeland. It makes good cents!” by doing business with these new Chamber members. For the most up-to-date list of members, visit our on-line Preferred Business Directory at!

Cabinets for Less

717 N. Florida Avenue Lakeland, FL 33801-1703 (863) 688-6110 Fax: (863) 688-6167

Kurt & Kristi Dunbar Cabinets/Cabinet Makers

D & T Investor Group, Inc. 8234 US Highway 98 N Lakeland, FL 33809 (863) 853-2200 Fax: (863) 248-4046 Terry Litterst Consultants

Douglas Collision Center, Inc. 7820 US Highway 98 N Lakeland, FL 33809-2139 (863) 853-4246 Fax: (863) 859-9476

Sean Douglas Automobile-Paint & Body Work

Dunkin Donuts

3110 S Florida Ave Lakeland, FL 33803-4549 (863) 701-1900 Kareem Mustafa Restaurants

Dunkin Donuts

5614 US Hwy 98 N Lakeland, FL 33809-3105 (863) 853-3005 Kareem Mustafa Restaurants

Elena's Cuban Cafe

2246 E Edgewood Dr Lakeland, FL 33803-3643 (863) 665-3333 Fax: (863) 665-3314 Mario Diaz Restaurants

First Class Moving Systems, Inc 5105 West Clifton Street Tampa, FL 33634-8011 (866) 717-MOVE (6683) Fax: (813) 889-3802 Will Fallon Movers

Gilileo Roofing Service

1701 W. Memorial Blvd Lakeland, FL 33815-1236 (863) 686-4644 Fax: (863) 686-7274 Gary Gilileo Roofing - Contractors/Supply

Joshua's Kitchen

2020 Shepherd Rd Mulberry, FL 33860-8699 (863) 701-7230 Fax: (863) 701-7259 Buerl Jankowski Restaurants

Kanga Marketing, Inc. Lakeland, FL 33801-5820 (936) 203-8407 Chase Sellmeyer Marketing/Advertising

Lake Morton Retirement Home, LLC 610 E Lime St Lakeland, FL 33801-5444 (863) 937-9114 Fax: (863) 937-9117 Lori Garrard Assisted Living Facility Alzheimer / Dementia Care

Melissa Woodward

Winter Haven, FL 33880-1041 (863) 662-1250 Melissa Woodward Interior Decorators/Designers

H.W. Oldham Funeral Home 1537 Kettles Ave Lakeland, FL 33805-3633 (863) 683-2419 Harry Oldham, III Funeral Homes

Polk County Health Dept Health Promotions & Preparedness 1290 Golfview Ave Bartow, FL 33830-6703 (863) 519-7900 Colleen Mangan Associations

Principal Financial Group

6635-2 S Florida Ave Lakeland, FL 33813-3337 (863) 701-7402 Fax: (863) 701-7402 Kim Andreadis Financial Services

Pro Med Healthcare Services, LLC

2518 S Florida Ave Lakeland, FL 33803-3859 (863) 669-0440 Fax: (863) 669-0408

Bart Richert Employment - Medical Staffing

Railroad & Industrial Federal Credit Union 2315 Drane Field Rd Lakeland, FL 33811-1324 (800) 769-1424 Fax: (863) 644-5602 Troy Hepler Credit Unions

Railroad & Industrial Federal Credit Union 3305 Lakeland Hills Blvd Lakeland, FL 33805-1975 (863) 956-0659 Fax: (863) 687-2318

Debbie Lott Amy Vermeulen Credit Unions

Warehouse Flooring, Inc. 1087 Hwy 92 W Auburndale, FL 33823-9585 (863) 965-7777 Fax: (863) 967-2546 Karyn Rich Floor Coverings

Weight Watchers

1558 Town Center Dr Lakeland, FL 33803-7967 Marsha L. Knowles Weight Loss & Wellness

No. 14

No. 16


During the month of August, our Visitor Information Center assisted hundreds of

individuals, answering questions pertaining to Chamber member businesses and

the Lakeland community.

Walk-in Visitors..................................247 Relocation Response Mailings................4 Relocation Response (Walk In).............14 Accommodations...................................2

Winter Accommodations .......................0 Visitor Information Mailings .................12 Visitor Center E-mail Inquiries.............101


Saturday, October 2

B.Y.O.Breakfast: An EMERGE Family Social, 9:00 a.m. Common Ground Park 1000 E Edgewood Dr

Thursday, October 7

Politics in the Park VIP Reception, 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Main Event, 6:00 p.m., Munn Park

Thursday, October 14

Business & Breakfast, 7:30 a.m. Habitat for Humanity 1317 George Jenkins Blvd

Thursday, October 21

Business After Hours, 5:30 p.m. Alexan at Lakeside Village 1555 Village Center Dr


Friday, October 1 & Saturday, October 2 Annual Board of Directors Planning Retreat Southeastern University

Monday, October 11

EMERGE Lakeland Steering Committee, 3:45 p.m.

Wednesday, October 13 Government Affairs, 8:00 a.m.

BusinessVoice of Greater Lakeland, Inc., 9:00 a.m.

Thursday, October 14

Leadership Lakeland Class XXVIII City Government Day

Wednesday, October 20 Executive Committee Meeting, 4:00 p.m.

Wednesday, October 27

Board of Directors Meeting, Noon Lakeland Yacht & Country Club 929 Lake Hollingsworth Drive

Thursday, October 28

SCORE Business Round Table, 7:30 a.m.

Monthly updates for Lakeland’s young professionals Experience EMERGE

By EMERGE Lakeland Marketing Committee

EMERGE Lakeland is proud to congratulate the 12 participants selected for P2P Class 3: Michelle Crawford, American Compliance Technologies, Inc; Cindy Dykes, Madden Corporation; Laura Helm, Woodmen of the World; Ryan Edrington, Ryan’s Pressure Washing; John Evans, Saunders Real Estate; Erin Geiger, Lighthouse Ministries; Joel Helm, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network; Adam Justice, Polk Museum of Art; Michael Kincart, Clark, Campbell, Mawhinney & Lancaster, P.A.; Shaun Miller, CPS Group CPA’s, PA; Derek Oxford, CPS Group CPA’s, PA; Michael Tucker, Florida Southern College; Bradley Wright, Wall Foss Financial, LLC. P2P = Peer to Peer Networking and aims to enrich the professional development of Lakeland's young professionals by partnering them with existing EMERGE Lakeland members. These 12 individuals

services range in age from 3 months to 18 years of age.

will work with seven existing EMERGE Lakeland mentors through May 4, 2011. EMERGE Lakeland members visited the Florida Baptist Childrens’ Homes headquarters in Lakeland on August 18. Central Florida Administrator, Eron Green, spoke to the group about how children enter and receive services from the program, how children are placed in foster and adoptive homes and how members can help as volunteers. Black & Brew Coffee House & Bistro donated a delicious lunch enabling all the proceeds from the event to be donated to the Florida Baptist Childrens’ Homes. After lunch, EMERGER’s were lead on a tour by the kids themselves, touching the hearts of all in attendance. Children receiving

At the Parks Recreation Event for P2P, Marc Zimmerman, Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing; Bill Tinsley, City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Director; Michelle Crawford, A-C-T Environmental & Infrastructure., and P2P Mentee; Michael Kincart, Clark, Campbell, Mawhinney & Lancaster, P.A., and P2P Mentee.

To learn more about upcoming events, volunteer opportunities, professional development opportunities and social outings, visit The EMERGE Lakeland experience is open to young professionals (ages 21-42) who are looking for more than just a job. Activities, networking and programs offer members an opportunity to give back to the Lakeland community, enhance their careers and become an integral part of the future of Lakeland business and leadership. Membership information is available on the EMERGE Lakeland Web site. Stay in tune with EMERGE Lakeland by following @EMERGELakeland on Twitter or joining the group on Facebook and LinkedIn. Members are also lucky to be receiving a brand new e-newsletter with information on up-coming events and past experiences. Thanks to Vice Chair Cindy Green of Furr & Wegman Architects, P.A. for the design!

Karen Houtz with Community Bank of Florida and Mary Church with SPCA, Inc. present a donation to Eron Green, Central Florida Administrator with the Florida Baptist Childrens’ Homes No. 18


Common Grounds

A taste of local business one cup at time The Lakeland Chamber’s newest member feature gives your business the opportunity to showcase “a day in the life” of your employees and customers. Each month, one of the door prizes available at the Business After Hours event will be a “Common Grounds” Lakeland Chamber mug. One lucky business will be drawn to receive a mug and submit a 350 word article about a “taste of daily life” around the office along with a picture of the mug in or around the business. By Kyle McMahan

South Florida State Manager

Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society, founded in 1890, is a fraternal benefit organization committed to caring for our members like family. Our state office is located in Lakeland off of Cleveland Heights Boulevard and our area office is off of Edgewood Drive. We offer valued financial solutions that help families protect their loved ones, save for the future, and achieve their goals of financial security. Products provided include life insurance, annuities, mutual funds and college savings plans. Through a network of 2,000 lodges nationwide, members of all ages can enjoy familyfriendly activities including wide-ranging volunteer opportunities. We provide member benefits and programs that strengthen the bonds of family, friendship and fraternity. Other benefits help members in time of need, like assistance for members’ orphaned children, disaster relief aid and financial support for members who are diagnosed with certain illnesses. Our patriotic program is one of our many service opportunities. We present

… American flags to schools, churches, civic organizations, and other non-profits. If you know of an organization in need of a flag, please contact our state office. We would be happy to present them with a flag! Our community outreach program also benefits non-profits in Lakeland by contributing financial support and hands-on assistance in various projects. We are proud to be sponsoring Pics on the Promenade, located on the Lake Mirror Promenade in downtown Lakeland, on October 8th. We will be hosting a fall festival, as well as selling box dinners, before the movie “Hook” is shown. All proceeds from the evening will benefit the Central Florida Autism Institute, Inc. We would love for everyone to bring their families out for food and festivities! For generations, families have placed their trust in Woodmen of the World, a trust that is bolstered through our strong financial performance. Our Lakeland field representatives and management team stand ready to serve our customers and community. Let us know how we can best serve you!

The Chamber would like to recognize and thank the following businesses for their long-standing support and loyalty.

20+ Years Renewals

1946 - 64 Years Gentry Morrison Funeral Home Southside 1969 - 41 Years McDonald Construction Corporation 1971 - 39 Years Meisner Paint & Body, Inc. 1972 - 38 years Williams & Williams, Inc. 1974 - 36 Years The NCT Group C.P.A.'s, LLP 1975 - 35 Years Griffin Pools, Inc. Herndon & Assoc. Ins., LLC 1977 - 33 Years National Memorials Saddle Creek Corporation 1978 - 32 Years Yerton Leasing & Auto Sales, Inc. 1981 - 29 Years Central Florida Speech & Hearing Center 1983 - 27 Years Clark & Daughtrey Medical Group, P.A. 1985 - 25 Years Knight Industrial Equipment, Inc. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. 1986 - 24 Years Cheatham, Goleno & Ferguson, P.A. Fun Bike Center Motorsports Polk Museum of Art 1987 - 23 Years Harper Realty & Development Co., Inc. Santa Fe Catholic High School 1988 - 22 Years Baskets Instead, Inc. Southside Cleaners - Launderers 1989 - 21 Years Jack Hall Jr.'s Construction and Aluminum 1990 - 20 Years Morris Commercial Enterprises, Inc

15-Year Renewals

All Saints' Academy Arnett Electric & Lighting, Inc. Stanley Insurance Services

10-Year Renewals

Andy Thornal Company Darling International, Inc. Suburban Extended Stay Hotel

5-Year Renewals

State Manager, Kyle McMahan

All About Blinds, Inc. Children's Home Society of Florida COMPUMEND, Inc. Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Pennsylvania Financial Group The Welborn Companies


Central Florida SCORE

Central Florida SCORE. a volunteer organization that counsels and mentors small businesses, will hold an orientation for all persons interested in becoming a counselor at the SCORE offices, 5410 S. Florida Ave, Lakeland on October 13 at 5:30 pm.

Polk State College

Southeastern University

Alumnus Dr. Edgar R. Lee has returned to his Lakeland alma mater and to a position he held for six years in the 1980s: Vice President for Academic Affairs. He succeeds Dr. Lyle Bowlin, a Finance Professor who has returned to his “first love” of classroom teaching in the university’s College of Business & Legal Studies.

Polk State College has named Jill Hall as Director of Human Resources. Hall brings over 20 years of experience as an HR director to the position. Her expertise includes leading HR teams, creating initiatives and providing multi-location consistency through HR practices and presence on all sites. Polk State College’s Mosaic EIA/Millwright Apprentice program has been selected by the National Council for Continuing Education and Training (NCCET) for an Exemplary Program Award. The program comprises 1,112 hours of related instructional theory and “hands on” lab time over a period of 18 to 24 months.

Southern Homes of Polk County, Inc.

Inna Markovsky will be moving from our Dinner Lake Shores community in Lake Wales to assist our customers in Patterson Heights in Haines City. As a New Home Specialist, Inna will continue to help buyers find, finance, build and enjoy a quality home from Southern Homes.

Also, Beverly Clutter will be moving from our James Towne Place community in Bartow to assist our customers at Country Club Trails in Winter Haven. As a New Home Specialist, Beverly will continue to help buyers find, finance, build and enjoy a quality home from Southern Homes.

Jewels by Parklane

Barb Erickson has recently accepted a position as a Senior Division Manager with Jewels by Park Lane, a 55 year old direct sales company from the Chicago area. She has been with PartyLite Gifts, Inc. for the past 15 years and will continue to support customers with candles, accessories and gourmet food products.

Polk County Builders Association

Stephanie Hutton, Executive Director, recently attended Executive Officer training in Santa Fe, New Mexico, conducted by the National Association of Home Builders. Also, Anne Hough, Foundation Director, recently completed a course in Non Profit Management at USF in Tampa.

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Play it Again Sports

Travis Hoffman, Store Manager, recently attended sporting goods franchisor’s annual summer trade show held July 18-20 in Minneapolis, MN. The trade show features educational sessions that analyzed current market trends and highlighted sales strategies.

The Lakeland Chamber prints business announcements each month as space permits. Please mail your announcements to the Chamber or e-mail:

Watson Clinic LLP

Is pleased to welcome Jens C. Carlsen, DO, to our team of urologists. Dr. Carlsen will offer urology services from our Main Clinic location at 1600 Lakeland Hills Boulevard, second floor, in Lakeland. His areas of expertise include urologic oncology (prostate, bladder, kidney and testicular cancers), laparoscopic surgery and genitourinary trauma/reconstructive surgery.

American Red Cross Mid-Florida Region

Announces Sara Olson as the new Chief Fund Development Officer for the Polk County Chapter. Olson will be instrumental in informing communities of the local, national and international impact of the Red Cross. She will also be responsible for securing funding through donations and grants in Polk, Highlands and Osceola counties.

CPS Investment Advisors

Pleased to welcome Tony Corrao as a Portfolio Trader. Most recently, Corraro was with a manufacturing firm analyzing financial statements and working on account reconciliations. Tony has a BS in Finance from Florida State University.

Polk County Health Dept Health Promotions & Preparedness

Pleased to welcome Tonya Richardson to the Polk County Health Department Tobacco Program staff. Tonya recently received her Master's in Public Health from Armstrong Atlantic State University. She is the new Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Coordinator. Colleen Mangan, Tobacco Program Coordinator, recently co-facilitated the Regional Tobacco Program meeting in Orange County. Jordan B., PRIDE/SWAT Youth recently co-facilitated the Region 3 SWAT Conference in Lakeland. Jordan's knowledge of tobacco control contributed to the Youth Advocacy Board's presentation for this training.

OMS Group, Inc.

Samantha Hayes, HR Specialist, recently earned certification as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR) through the HR Certification Institute. OMS Group, Inc is an HRO provider that helps clients manage human resources, payroll, benefits and risk management needs. Samantha has worked in the Human Resources field for 11 years and is a graduate of Florida A & M University.

Lakeland Surgical & Diagnostic Center, LLP

One of 16 outpatient centers that received national recognition as a recipient of the 2009/2010 Apex Quality Award. This was the second consecutive year for Lakeland Surgical & Diagnostic Center’s Main Campus to receive this distinctive award, and the first year for their Griffin Road Campus. The APEX Quality Award stands for Attributes for Patient Excellence. Recently chosen the winner of the OR Excellence Award in the category of infection control. The winner was selected based on their multifaceted and creative solutions to issues specific to infection control. Their award-winning infection control program will be featured in the upcoming October issue of the Outpatient Surgery magazine.

Alliance for Independence

Pleased to announce the 2010-2011 Board of Directors and Officers: Chairman, Ron Losch, Retired/Publix; Chair Elect & Chair, Performance Oversight Monitoring Committee, Scott Sloman, The Lakeland Center; Secretary & Chair, External Relations and Resource Development Committee, Bart Ross, TMR Agency; Treasurer & Chair, Audit Committee, David R. Ramos, CPA; Chair, Planning and Program Development Committee, Andrew Hernan, Griffin Pools, Inc.; Jennifer L. Adams, Bank of Central Florida; Carol N. Asbill, Publix Super Markets; John C. Burton, Sun n' Fun, Inc., Immediate Past Chair; Deborah Heatherley, Publix Super Markets; Timothy Kiley, Peterson & Myers, P.A.; Charles Lake, Retired; Sherrie D. Long, Allen & Company; Philip Mowry, Florida Southern College; Jim Rehberg, J-Reh, Inc.; Sena E. Schirm, SunTrust Bank; Anthony J. Senzamici, Jr., Pioneer Medical Company; Tom Patterson, Saddle Creek Corp.; Anne-Marie Wendel, Lakeland Police Department; William H. Wheeler, Jr., Wheeler & Wheeler, Inc.; Richard Wills, FITniche.

Holiday Inn Lakeland – South

Carl Stutzman has joined the Holiday Inn Lakeland South as Sales Manager.He invites you to stop by and tour the hotel, meet the staff and see why Holiday Inn's are Great Hotels Guests Love!

Lanier Upshaw, Inc.

Is pleased to announce that Kathryn Koch, Vice President, attended a Personal Insurance Seminar conducted by Ohio National Financial Services in Cincinnati, Ohio August 16-19. Training focused on product information, marketing, sales ideas, business planning and best business practices.


The following companies recently celebrated their ribbon cuttings in the month of August. See the photos on our Web site at

Allure Salon Day Spa Lakeland, Inc.

5668 S Florida Ave • Lakeland, FL 33813-2526 (863) 644-8663 •

MJ’s Cuban Cafe

635 Robin Road • Lakeland, FL 33803-4840 (863) 644-4400

USA Bearings & Belts

3615 Century Blvd, Ste 4A • Lakeland, FL 33811-1396 (863) 248-8499 •


Special thanks to Mayor Gow Fields, Commissioner Glenn E. Higgins and all the Board Members and Chamber Champions who truly make these ceremonies special events.

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Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce P.O. Box 3607 • Lakeland, FL 33802-3607 Return Service Requested


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October 2010 Forum for Business Monthly  

The Lakeland Area Chamber of COmmerce Monthly Newsletter