Issuu on Google+

������� ���������

Conversations with Top Sarasota-Manatee Business Leaders


Documenting Life Recipient of 26 Telly and 2 Emmy® awards, the Center for Faith and Freedom continues to address our nation’s most critical issues through inspiring media presentations. ®

Stuart J. Roth

Founder and President

For further information on opportunities for your non-profit organization to obtain one of our documentaries, please contact Patty Dodson at 941-487-4061

7357 Merchant Court � Sarasota, FL 34240 � Phone 941.487.4061 � Fax 941.487.4062

www.FaithandFreedom.org


�������������������

��

Seasonal Membership Opportunities Available

941.365.4191

Membership in the Sarasota Yacht Club is subject to the approval of the Board of Directors.


Wealth Planning You Can Build On World-class investment advice is an important part of a comprehensive wealth plan. So is advice about your estate, your business, your philanthropic giving, your restricted stock position and your lending needs. At Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, we offer a full range of services to help you grow, protect and transfer your wealth. Call or email me for a complimentary consultation to discuss how I can help you with your wealth planning goals and objectives.

Ernie B. Garcia Senior Vice President - Wealth Management Senior Investment Management Consultant 2 North Tamiami Trail, Suite 1100 Sarasota, Florida 34236

941.364.7405 800.237.9441 ext. 405 ernie.b.garcia@mssb.com www.fa.smithbarney.com/ernie_garcia

Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC, its affiliates and Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Financial Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice. This material was not intended or written to be used for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer. Clients should consult their tax advisor for matters involving taxation and tax planning and their attorney for matters involving trust and estate planning and other legal matters.

NY CS 6390873 WP001 09/10 2010-PS-1725

©2010 Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC. Member SIPC


SCOTT PIKE Professional Artist

WINNIE DOWNES AND CARL DENNEY Thespians and Avid Boaters

BETSY BAGBY Philanthropist and Patron of the Sarasota Youth Opera

P LY M O U T H H A R B O R

THE PLACE TO PU R S U E L I F E ’ S PA S S I O N S Plymouth Harbor is all about enjoying an inspired and active retirement lifestyle. With the services and amenities of a first-class hotel, you’ll come to understand the true meaning of maintenance-free living, as you recognize that you’re doing what you want to do – not what you have to. Spend your days focusing on the activities that give you pleasure – exploring your artistic abilities, volunteering in the community or whipping up culinary treats in your wellappointed new kitchen. Plymouth Harbor makes every day a pleasure.

heirloom mantel or want to create a waterfront oasis to show off your contemporary furniture and art collection, we’ll help you create a space that is uniquely you. When quality of life, smart planning and the freedom to pursue passions and new interests are top priorities, Plymouth Harbor is the wise choice. Call us today for a tour of our award-winning campus, luxury accommodations and amenities.

And all this comes with the peace of mind in knowing that we are a continuing care community should your health care needs change. Plymouth Harbor’s design team will help you design and customize a new residence to fit your needs and tastes. Whether you’re looking for the perfect space for an

Sarasota’s First Choice in Continuing Care Retirement Communities ������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������ A Not-For-Profit Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) OIR #88039

JOE & LYN DEGLMAN Local Merchants and Volunteers

DR. LOU NEWMAN Retired Veterinary Surgeon Turned Nature Photographer

RUTH ENTREKIN Artist and Centenarian


Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion. – Jack Welch Surviving the economic challenges of the past few years has proven quite difficult for businesses both large and small, and while many businesses have sadly fallen prey to the hard times, many have not only weathered the storm, but have grown and prospered.

Leading the SCENE, a SCENE Magazine special issue, contains interviews with local business leaders from various sectors who stand apart from the others and lead the way in our community. Whether they’ve started new businesses, reorganized, diversified, improved product quality, offered ancillary or improved services, they’ve made the tough choices to ensure their business fundamentals stay strong, which in turn supports our local economy and helps build a better future for us all. You may or may not know their names, but they are all invaluable to the inner workings of our community. Not only has their business leadership and success impacted lives, but their civic leadership demonstrates their deep care for this community and enhances their role as leaders.

We hope you will enjoy reading each interview and will be inspired by each of their achievements, hard work and relentless pursuit of excellence. We also encourage you to consider utilizing their services as your needs dictate and we encourage you to keep this table top issue on hand for many years to come.

Julie Milton Executive Editor

CEO/Publisher Ronald W. Milton

Writer Susan Cullen

Executive Editor Julie A. Milton

Photographer Cliff Roles

Issue Coordinator Debbi Benedict Art Director Michelle Cross

Contact Info:

7269 Bee Ridge Road Sarasota, FL 34241 941.365.1119 scenesarasota.com

A SCENE Magazine Special Issue. Volume 54, No. 11. scene magazine is published monthly by RJM Ventures, LLC. All contents copyrighted. Reproduction without permission is prohibited. ISSN 1535-8895.


The Best Kept Secret in Sarasota For More Than 25 Years

FEATURING A LARGE SELECTION OF PLANTS, POTS, AND GIFTS ON OUR CONVENIENT 5 ACRE NURSERY.

Troy’s Tropics Open 7 Days a Week 5212 Proctor Road Sarasota, FL 34233 941-923-3756 www.troystropics.com


Laurel Oak Laurel Oak CountryClub

An Extraordinary Opportunity to Seize Life

Call Us About Our Try-Us-Out Memberships 2700 Gary Player Boulevard Sarasota, FL 34240 941-378-3399 www.laureloak.com Located 1.5 miles east of I-75 on Bee Ridge Road

COUNTRY CLUB A PRIVATE CLUB


������� ���������

Conversations with Top Sarasota-Manatee Business Leaders


Matthew Bower

PNC WEALTH MANAGEMENT In just four years, your wealth management ofďŹ ce

Those words are used all the time, but here we take it

has grown from two employees into one of the most

very seriously and work to demonstrate that to our clients

prominent in the area. To what do you attribute such

every day. We also have sought out the best talent

growth and success?

available for this office. Our professionals are some of the

Foremost, everything that I and our professionals do is

most sophisticated and experienced wealth management

designed to deliver highly personalized client service

experts in the country who have a strong appreciation for

with the maximum degree of integrity and honesty.

the importance of excellent, individualized client service.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Just as important, we have the stability, oversight and

including Fleet Bank and U.S. Trust in management and

tremendous depth of one of the largest diversified financial

business development positions prior to founding this

services organizations in the nation.

office four years ago. In college, I was a political science major with a minor in business administration and Citibank

What do you mean by personalized client service?

recruited me for a position in private banking. I found I

We do not try to fit clients into standardized offerings.

had an affinity for wealth management and a drive always

We believe each individual and each family is unique,

to be considered the best in class. I still have that drive,

and we make recommendations based on their specific

and I am still enjoying the business 20 years later.

circumstances. With us, clients never have to call an 800 number. They can come in to our office and speak

PNC Bank has earned a lot of awards and recognition

directly with our professionals who want to be sure that

lately.

they fully understand any recommendations we make and

Yes, PNC is a Fortune 200 company and was named

ensure all their questions are answered before they make

to this year’s Most Admired Companies list by Fortune

a decision.

magazine. Gallup also gave PNC a Great Workplace Award for Employee Engagement, and we were named U.S. Bank

What is the scope of services you offer?

of the Year by The Banker magazine in 2010. PNC also has

PNC Wealth Management’s core business is trust and

been named one of the Top 50 Companies for Executive

estate planning, retirement planning, wealth and charitable

Women by the National Association for Female Executives

planning, investment management and private banking.

and one of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers by Working Mother magazine.

Have you been impacted by all the upheaval in the financial industry?

PNC Wealth Management and you personally have been

Our entire industry has lost a lot of trust going back to

very active philanthropically in the Sarasota/Manatee

the Enron and WorldCom scandals. That’s why it is so

area. Is that going to change?

imperative that we act with absolute trustworthiness.

Absolutely not. I plan to remain involved and am currently

Fortunately, PNC was never involved with home mortgages

chairman of the Sarasota Manatee World Affairs Council

or issuing risky securities, and its financial strength has

and on the Sarasota Opera’s Professional Advisory Board.

allowed the company to continue to expand. On a personal

Philanthropically, we also actively support many other

level, I believe that if I continue to focus first on how my

organizations, including the Asolo Repertory Theatre,

clients and community can get ahead, then we will grow

the Education Foundation of Sarasota County, Forty

and succeed as well. I don’t just view my role as a job or

Carrots, the Ringling School of Art and Design, Girls

career, but as an obligation to represent my industry with

Incorporated, West Coast Black Theatre Troupe and Big

the highest level of integrity.

Brothers Big Sisters. In addition, our professionals are actively encouraged to volunteer their time and talents to

Earlier this year, you’re responsibilities were expanded.

community organizations that support causes for which

What does your new role encompass?

they have a passion.

I now have responsibility for the market from Naples to Tampa. My role is to ensure we capitalize on the best

Will Sarasota continue to be your home base?

practices from each of our offices to give our customers a

Sarasota is home for me, my wife, Lori, and our two

consistent high-class, high-touch service. The goal is for

daughters, Madeline and Ella. We have a long term

our clients to have the same excellent experience whether

commitment to this community and to PNC, both of which

they walk into our office here or anywhere else in the PNC

have been extremely good to us, and we want to serve

footprint.

them the best we can.

What is your background, and how did you become a financial services executive? I have been in the wealth management business for 20 years now, working with a variety of financial institutions,

240 South Pineapple Avenue Sarasota, FL 34236 941-363-5060 pnc.com/wealthmanagement SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Anne Folsom Smith

ANNE FOLSOM SMITH INTERIOR DESIGN

Anne Folsom Smith Interior Design is approaching 30 years

are conservative, and our approach is eclectic, the blending

in business and has grown to a staff of 10 professionals. To

of the best styles. People like the anonymity they can have

what do you attribute the business’ longevity?

in Sarasota and have a great appreciation for our wonderful

I’ve been in Sarasota for 45 years now, and we definitely

lifestyle. At heart, we deliver lifestyle, and our clients understand

know our market. We find that for the most part, people here

and appreciate the integrity that goes into creating a beautiful

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


interior. I think they especially appreciate our ability to discern

What type of projects have you done?

what they want even though they may not be able to fully

We’ve designed many private residences from Longboat

articulate their desires.

Key to California and internationally. That includes everything from 2,000 square foot apartments to 20,000

You are a licensed interior designer. What other types of

square foot homes. Our commercial work includes

professionals do you have on your staff?

Michael’s on East Restaurant and Ballroom, Atrium on

We have tremendous expertise in this office, including

Biscayne Bay, Cancer Care Center, Bleu Claire, Marquee

two architects, one of whom is LEEDS certified, as well as

En Ville and Marquee on the Bay. Historically, we did a great

designers and installers. Everyone makes a contribution to

deal of projects for Arvida and Taylor Woodrow.

the client whether they are installing knobs or making sure the sheets are washed. Most people have been here for years, and

Why do you think people choose your company for design?

we are a wonderful consortium of minds who understand how

The very first thing we sell is service. We will take a project

this business works. I sometimes say our work is like building a

from the ground up and finish it by making up the beds if that

fine car. We know how all of the parts mesh so the final result

is what they want. Mostly people find us because someone

is that beautiful Bentley.

gave us a great reference or through our website. While we have a beautiful office where we’ve been for 30 years, you have

Do you have a style in which you specialize?

to want to find us because we don’t really have a storefront.

We don’t have a particular style of design, so you can’t really

We have, however, always had an office cat adopted from a

buttonhole us. Being around for as long as we have, we are

shelter that greets visitors when they come here.

mindful of being labeled. Since people are all different, the lifestyles we create for them are unique to their individuality.

Quite a few national magazines have featured your

If you look at our website, it’s clear we have a wide range of

projects, and your own home has earned awards.

expertise. Because of our business longevity and success,

We are proud to have won several Aurora and FAME Awards,

some may assume that we are expensive. We just ask to

DCOTA Designer of the Year and Who’s Who in Interior Design.

be given the chance to explain how we do business. Then,

We’ve been featured in Southern Living, Architectural Digest

people can decide if we are the right choice for them and

and Coastal Living to name a few. My personal residence

whether we are at the top of our game.

won a Founders Garden Tour Award two years in a row.

How do you translate people’s thoughts and dreams

You are an extremely accomplished pianist and very

about what they want in a room or a home into a 3-D

involved musically within the community as well as with

reality?

a variety of arts and humanitarian nonprofits.

First of all, our work is based on emotion. It must appeal to the

My mother was a piano teacher and taught me how to play.

emotional aspects of how someone lives in a home, and that

I now sing in my church choir and play as needed. You really

has to be articulated into a budget, which also can be emotional.

can’t keep the music in me. I have the music in my soul. I’m

My college minors were psychology and music, and I know that

on the board of the Sarasota Orchestra and am co-producer

what clients are not saying may be as important as what they

for the Florida Studio Theatre. I’ve chaired many fundraisers,

are saying. Getting to their lifestyle means spending the time and

including for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota County, and

asking very probing questions. Clients may show me a picture.

I served on the New College Foundation Board for six years.

They look at it from an emotional standpoint, and I look at it

Community involvement is the glue that holds me together.

from a technical point of view. So, I want to know what about it appeals to them. Is it the lamp, the sofa or the view? For me, taking something as airy fairy as “I want it to be blue and white and like a child” and making that come together is the joy of the work. It is the meringue on the lemon pie to know that we have made someone happy with their decision to choose us.

330 South Pineapple Avenue, Suite 206 Sarasota, FL 34236 941-957-0434 anne@annefolsomsmith.com annefolsomsmith.com SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Steven Roskamp, Gregory Patterson, Gail Chase & Frank Herold

SARASOTA BAY CLUB If someone is considering moving into a retirement

is no guesswork. They know their purchase price and for

center, what do they need to know about Sarasota Bay

estate planning purposes, they know exactly what they or

Club?

their estate will receive for the unit by a specific date.

Patterson: We operate as a condominium, and our residents own their apartments free and clear. It’s all the

With the real estate market the way it has been, what

positives of home ownership with none of the negatives. For

if someone needs to move in, but can’t sell their

instance, if something breaks inside someone’s apartment,

house?

we take care of it. When a resident moves in here, there

Roskamp: Our Freedom Purchase Program is designed

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


to take away the stress and anxiety of owning two homes

intellectual stimulation. Our Masterpiece Living® program

while ensuring that someone gets the care they need. We

gives residents the opportunity to make improvements

have extended closing dates up to 12 months to allow

physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually to encourage

someone time to sell their home, and we offer assistance

healthy living for continued independence and a high

from experienced realtors who can prepare their home for a

quality of life.

quicker sale at a better price. We also offer the option of either

Chase: If residents’ needs change and they require

moving into their new residence with a reduced monthly fee

additional support, our Clubcare Home Health Services

to offset the costs of having two homes or allowing seniors

helps them stay in their own homes by assisting with

to enjoy our amenities, such as our excellent dining facilities

everything from housekeeping and shopping to home

and Clubcare services prior to moving in.

health care and private duty nursing. Our care management program helps them navigate the complexities of the

For what reasons does someone choose to move into

healthcare system if needed.

one of Sarasota Bay Club’s condominiums? Roskamp: It’s a combination of our physical amenities and

Please explain your Florida Medical Retreat program

lifestyle. Our residents have lived active, accomplished lives

and why you started it.

and have had a positive impact on our community. We help

Roskamp: This is our venture into medical tourism, which

them continue to be able to do that by taking care of life’s

we see as additional revenue to allow us to maintain our

more mundane things so they can do what they enjoy doing

high level of skilled nursing care at The Inn. We have

when they want to do it.

teamed with 12 surgeons and Sarasota Memorial and

Herold : One of the biggest concerns people have when

Doctors hospitals while we provide post-surgical care and

going into any retirement center is that others will be

rehabilitation.

making decisions for them. That just does not happen here. We are very innovative in customizing services and

Sarasota Bay Club is known as a good neighbor and

making them available as our residents need them and to

for its contributions to the community. What have you

the extent they need them. We like people to know that

been involved in recently?

moving here is a very positive decision that can improve

Patterson: Bob Roskamp continues his quest to tame

their quality of life.

Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological disorders at the Roskamp Institute. We also have been very involved with the

What amenities do you offer?

North Trail Redevelopment Partnership and helping improve

Patterson: Our setting is exceptionally beautiful with

the park next to us. We support many local organizations

some of the best views in Sarasota. Our condominiums are

like Jewish Family and Children’s Service, Senior Friendship

spacious and very nicely appointed, and we offer some of

Center, the VanWezel, Sarasota Opera, Florida Studio

the best fine dining anywhere. We have five dining venues

Theatre and the Sarasota Ballet.

ranging from casual to formal, or residents can choose to dine in their condominiums. We also offer 24-hour valet

What’s in store for the future?

service or provide transportation for shopping, lunch with

Herold: We are fortunate to be on solid ground financially

friends or theatre and other events.

thanks to the strength of our ownership and the direction

Chase: Also, the Inn at Sarasota Bay Club is a highly-

of Bob Roskamp. Our management team is very strong

regarded skilled nursing facility with a complete rehabilitation

with many years of experience in senior housing and

program that not only is used by residents but also by

strong ties to our community. Our commitment remains

members of the community whose physicians have referred

to live by our three pillars of providing an environment of

them to the Inn for pre-admission care, rehabilitation, and

love, support and security. At the end of the day, that’s

restorative and respite care.

what it’s all about.

You also have a variety of activities and lifestyle options. Herold : We do provide many activities that reflect our residents’ interests and their desire for continued

1301 N Tamiami Trail, Sarasota, FL 34236 941-366-7667 info@sarasotabayclub.com | sarasotabayclub.com SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Deborah Beacham

Michael Saunders & Company 941-376-2688 DeborahBeacham@michaelsaunders.com LuxuryPropertyInSarasota.com

DEBORAH BEACHAM, REALTOR You’ve earned a remarkable number of accolades in eight

concerns, insurance requirements, and the building process. I

years as a realtor. What recognitions have you received?

have built and/or renovated several homes, so my understanding

I have been fortunate to rank consistently in the top 1 percent

of the intricacies of construction helps me assist customers in

of more than 3,000 Sarasota realtors, and in 2010, I was the

evaluating the potential of different properties.

3rd highest producing individual agent for Michael Saunders & Company in Sarasota County. In 2009 I represented the

With what type of clients do you usually work, and what

seller for the highest sale on Bird Key, and I have had the

has made your work with them so successful?

second highest sale so far in 2011 on Bird Key. I also am a

Over the years, I have worked with entrepreneurs, CEOs of

five-year winner of the 5-Star Customer Satisfaction Award.

major companies, as well as first-time home buyers. It doesn’t matter with whom I’m working, my philosophy is simple. Treat

That is a very notable track record in a relatively short time,

everyone the way that I want to be treated and always follow

what was your background before you became a realtor?

up. My customers tell me that they appreciate my tenacious

I was director of sales and marketing for our family owned

attention to detail, ability to create order out of chaos, out-

business, Beacham Publishing in Washington, D.C. I also

of-the-box thinking and always serving them with dedication,

previously sold computer software for Lotus Development

integrity and enthusiasm.

and have co-authored best-selling computer books with my husband, Walton.

Your community involvement reflects wide ranging interests.

In what areas of real estate sales do you specialize?

Yes, I served as president of Key Chorale for six years and

I specialize in luxury real estate with specific emphasis on

currently am on the board of La Musica. I also support Girls Inc.,

waterfront homes. Having lived on the barrier island of Casey

the United Way’s Realtors for Kids Program, Asolo Repertory

Key for the past 17 years gives me real insight into environmental

Theatre and The Players Theatre among others.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Marjorie Broughton 766 South Osprey Avenue Sarasota, FL 34236 941-365-1021 info@rscgi.com rocksolidconstructionsrq.net

ROCK SOLID CONSTRUCTION GROUP, INC. Although relatively new, Rock Solid Construction rode

Conservation Project changing street-light fixtures and installing

out the construction downturn very well thanks to some

LED lighting as the minority subcontractor. Another “new” area

savvy business moves. How did you achieve that?

for us is handling Division 10 for commercial buildings — items

Historically we have relied on advertising our services by referrals

such as fire extinguishers, signs, towel and soap dispensers.

from satisfied customers and by building relationships. We have continued to emphasize our commitment to integrity, quality,

The company has won many awards, and most recently,

and good client communication. Our reputation is for being on-

the Sarasota Chamber named you its Entrepreneurial

time, within or under budget, and consistent craftsmanship. At

Woman of 2011.

times, this requires us to walk away from opportunities rather than

That was a personally gratifying award. RSC was the Chamber’s

sacrifice our principles. We have creatively adapted to market

Young Business of the Year in 2008, won SRQ magazine’s

variations and adjusted our target audience and services.

platinum award for Best New Home (under $3million) in 2009, and Better Homes & Gardens magazine featured one of our

You have had a diverse background from technical

projects in its Kitchen + Bath Remodeling special issue in 2010.

editor on the Apollo Project and as a publicist, marketer, and publisher, to methods analyst and nonprofit

Given the business and personal challenges you have

fundraising. How has this helped you?

faced over the past six years, have you been able to

When the construction market fluctuated, I drew on learned

maintain your community involvement?

skills and flexibility to think both practically and creatively. For

Although I have reduced my level of participation, adding my

RSC, I have focused on identifying market trends and looked for

daughter Nikki Taylor to the management team has reinforced

niche markets where we could make an impact, such as aging-

our community involvement through board and volunteer

in-place homes and green design. We’re currently working

services. And we also provide construction services to non-

with Siemens Corporation on the City of Sarasota’s Energy

profits on a no-cost or cost-only basis. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Scott M. Bush

SUNCOAST COMMUNITIES BLOOD BANK

1760 Mound Street Sarasota, FL 34236 941-954-1600 sbush@scbb.org scbb.org

Describe the organization and your role.

era of unprecedented consolidations in the blood bank

Suncoast Communities Blood Bank (SCBB) is a not-for-profit

industry, especially in Florida. Because we are local and

organization with more than 130 employees, plus a fleet of

deeply rooted in the community, we have a passion to

volunteers, who have enabled us to serve the community

ensure that we provide the best services possible, and

for more than 62 years. SCBB provides blood products and

help reduce the cost of healthcare in our area. In the midst

services to 12 area hospitals and healthcare facilities within

of these challenges, SCBB has not only survived, it has

Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto, and Charlotte Counties. As

thrived. Within the last 18 months, SCBB has opened two

CEO, it is my responsibility to ensure that SCBB operates

new collection centers in Manatee County and has been

efficiently, effectively, and as openly as possible.

approached by four more area hospitals that wish to utilize SCBB’s services. SCBB has grown at a rate of almost 10

What sets your organization apart from others?

percent per year over the last five years and should eclipse

Our commitment to community and ultimately to our top

this mark in 2012.

stakeholders, our patients and volunteer blood donors. SCBB believes in giving back to the community. We have done so by

What else can you tell us about SCBB?

awarding more than $80,000 in scholarships to high school

We have a dedicated and passionate staff. It’s great to be

seniors who donate blood, and supporting causes such as

the CEO of such a caring and dedicated group. I often hear

Relay for Life, the Heart Walk, and Manasota Operation Troop

compliments about the competency and friendliness of our

Support, to name a few.

staff. Everybody believes in our mission, and that’s what makes us great as is evidenced by the Florida Association of

What is the impact of what you do for individuals and/

Blood Banks, which has awarded SCBB management staff

or on the community as a whole?

members “Executive of the Year” for four straight years. I’m

As the economy struggles to recover, we have seen an

honored to be part of this team.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Jim Butler

PARADISE HOMES

OF

SARASOTA

3750 South Osprey Avenue Sarasota, FL 34239 941-388-8144 info@paradisesarasota.com extremeremodelersofsarasota.com Paradise Homes has quickly become a success story

How

does

your

experience

as

an

engineer

and

despite tough economic times. What’s your secret?

entrepreneur crossover into the construction business?

There is no secret. I adhere every day to my basic business

During my years in manufacturing, I recognized that there are

plan, which I crafted from many years of listening to the needs

ways to improve the construction process. I am a believer

and expectations of my clients, and I deliver every time.

in being vertically integrated. Therefore, I hired employees

Today’s buyer seeks quality and value without compromising

rather than subcontracting, which creates loyalty and enables

lifestyle and luxury amenities. I simplify their selection process

us to effectively facilitate scheduling. Our remodeling division,

and exceed expectations with our “Jewel Box” Series. Buyers

Extreme Remodelers, allows us to develop relationships with

are delighted to discover that each Series contains a plethora

trusted and top-end luxury name brands.

of exceptional appointments and finishes, along with trusted luxury name brands of such quality as Viking appliances, Wood

How does the new Viking Culinary Center in Lakewood

Mode cabinetry and Hinkley lighting. I believe the “Jewel Box”

Ranch connect with the Paradise Homes lifestyle?

Series has been the driving component to Paradise Homes

For today’s consumer, it is all about buying a lifestyle. At the

becoming the number one luxury builder in Lakewood Ranch.

Center, everyone can experience hands-on testing of Viking appliances and participate in live demonstrations and events.

How does the “Jewel Box” Series exceed expectations?

The selection of Viking indoor and outdoor appliances is a

We take the stress and price guessing out of the process and

natural extension of your home and reinforces the comfort

create a smooth buying experience. Buyers can relax and

and lifestyle buyers seek.

preview the finishes and amenities in each of our “Jewel Box” packages at our 6,000 square foot Design Center. Once their

What is your greatest accomplishment?

expectations are met and their selections are made, the price

The support team I have at home. Without my wife, Sharon,

is set. There are never any surprises at the end.

and four amazing children this would not be possible. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Margaret Callihan

SUNTRUST BANK, SOUTHWEST FLORIDA

Chairman, President & CEO SunTrust, Southwest Florida 1777 Main Street Sarasota, FL 34236 941-951-3386 suntrust.com

SunTrust Bank has a reputation for being very involved

Please explain how SunTrust, with the financial power

philanthropically in the community as part of its

of a large bank, effectively delivers services to local

community reinvestment approach. Does that hold

businesses and individuals.

true here?

We bring the full capability of a large bank delivered by our local

Yes, we are very engaged in the community. We were founded

team empowered to make decisions. Financial solutions across

on the vision that as you build your community, you build your

the spectrum are provided by teammates who live and work

bank, and I wholeheartedly support that belief. In practice, we

right here in Southwest Florida. They know the market and their

try to participate in varied activities and support a number of

clients well and make decisions from that perspective.

different causes to ensure our giving reflects the diversity of With such a tremendous amount of financial expertise,

our community.

how does SunTrust assist its diverse client base in the Isn’t it true that SunTrust employees are given time off

community?

from work for volunteer activities?

SunTrust is committed to serving our diverse client base by

Yes, we have a program called Solid Gives Back which

providing solid financial solutions to help people and institutions

encourages our teammates to become involved in the community

prosper. That is our mission. In addition to delivering banking

and they are given time off to do so. Our teammates support

services, we provide financial education to our clients and our

very diverse organizations and causes in human services, arts,

community. Everyone benefits from being financially savvy.

the environment and a great number of other areas. In addition

We’re currently working partnerships with Goodwill, Habitat for

to financial support and volunteerism, we encourage leadership

Humanity and the Salvation Army to help people with budgeting

through serving on boards and participating in community

and saving as well as with the proper use of credit. We are really

events and fundraisers. Financial Education is one of our

trying to make a difference, so we support our clients and the

greatest passions on the volunteer front.

community on multiple levels.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Dr. Anne Chauvet

CRITICAL CARE & VETERINARY SPECIALISTS OF SARASOTA

4937 S. Tamiami Trail Sarasota, FL 34231 941-929-1818 petneuro@gmail.com criticalvetcare.com What inspired you to become a veterinary neurologist?

we created was up to us, and we had to work together.

When I was six, I saw how my brother grieved when our

Wanting that strong sense of community drives me to

dog passed away. I decided then to help animals with

advocate cooperation rather than competition within our

their physical pain and their owners’ emotional pain. I saw

veterinary community and also on a personal level. Last

myself as a wildlife preserve vet or even James Herriot, but

year, my son, Vincent, and I welcomed Devan into our

ultimately, I fell in love with surgery and neurology. Being

lives. I have always dreamed of adopting, and although

able to help owners enjoy more quality time with their pets

I researched many options, I chose to work with the

always inspires me.

wonderful Safe Coalition Center and adopt a child from our community.

You founded CCVSS, an advanced veterinary medical center offering services not previously available here.

You have been tremendously active in the community,

What does this mean to pet owners?

currently serving on the Humane Society of Sarasota

CCVSS offers emergency, intensive care and surgery for

County and United Cerebral Palsy boards. CCVSS also

pets that is similar to the technology and 24-hour monitoring

treats local K-9 teams, provides subsidized services to

by specialists in a human hospital. We have on-site MRI, a

shelters and rescues, and donated pet oxygen masks

mechanical respirator, digital radiography and other advanced

to the fire department and emergency field kits to the

technology as well as compassionate veterinary specialists to

K-9 teams.

allow us to prolong the lives of precious family pets.

It’s always about helping animals and children’s charities. I also recently started Specialists for Animals Inc., a 501(c)3

Creating a strong sense of community also is very

nonprofit to help pet owners who cannot afford the cost of

important to you.

specialist treatment. I want to do my part to create magic and

It is. I grew up in a remote African village where everything

miracles in our community. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Captain Jerry L. Chitwood

3591 Bayou Circle Longboat Key, Florida 34228 941-383-5232 or 1-800-769-1399 captainjerry@chitwood-charters.com chitwood-charters.com

CHITWOOD CHARTERS In what kind of experiences does Chitwood Charters

Oceans of the World. Our yachts feature two or three staterooms,

specialize?

and their seaworthy and dependable performance ensure long-

We have supplied luxury yachts for short and long term

range, economical performance with luxury. Our clients are very

charters for 33 years from the Hyatt and also Marina Jack.

discriminating, and we give them the care, quality service and

Our cruises range from four-hour and all-day trips to rentals

memorable on-the-water experience they expect.

by the week or month. Clients who own yachts may choose to captain themselves or hire one of our captains. We will also

Your four-hour and day cruises are very popular.

teach prospective buyers how to handle a yacht.

People charter cruises for every occasion imaginable, including weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, scenic cocktail

Where do people generally cruise?

parties, and real estate tours, even for services to spread

Clients depart the Hyatt Sarasota, turn south to the shell

ashes. We work closely with the concierge staff at the Ritz

beaches of the barrier islands of Sanibel, Captiva, Boca Grande

Carlton and Hyatt as well as individual clients. Our four-

and Marco Island. Ports in Venice, Fort Myers or Naples await

hour cruises have been very popular with the Stars who are

their experience! Unspoiled beaches, cool ocean breezes,

performing at the VanWezel.

privacy aboard! They enjoy the curious, playful antics of a friendly porpoise or taking a refreshing dip in one of many secluded

What prompted you to get into the business of chartering

bays. Longer charters may choose to cruise the Bahamas.

yachts, and why Sarasota? I always have had yachts and enjoyed the water. As a licensed

What kind of yachts do you charter?

pilot and former experimental hovercraft pilot, I was used to

We offer the Rolls Royce line of Grand Banks Trawlers and

handling powerful vehicles, so yachts were a natural ďŹ t. I chose

Selene Passagemakers and were the ďŹ rst company in the world

Sarasota because it is the Jewel of the West Coast with its

to charter these yachts. Both have proven themselves on the

white sand beaches, beautiful water and wonderful people.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Michelle Crabtree

Michael Saunders & Company 941-724-HOME(4663) Sales@CrabtreeHomes.com CrabtreeHomes.com

MICHELLE CRABTREE, REALTOR With nearly 30 years as a licensed real estate salesperson,

You have a broker’s license and long list of professional

what’s your secret to your longevity and success

recognitions and certifications. What drives you to this

especially during the past few difficult years?

level of professional achievement?

I believe my longevity and success are due to my community

I like to stand out professionally and believe that knowledge

expertise and strong client satisfaction, from which I

is power. The more you learn, the better you can service

gain many referrals. I also believe my integrity, honesty,

your clients. I hold 10 certifications (CRS; CIPS; GRI; ABR;

education, excellence and professionalism are key factors.

PMN; TRC; RSPS; SFR; AHWD; and the ”Green” designation)

Despite the economy, last year was my best year ever, and

giving me added expertise in resort and second-homes and

this year I’m on target to exceed it. My goal is to always

working with international clients. The Women’s Council of

exceed client expectations, provide outstanding service

Realtors named me its 2009 “Business Woman of the Year”

and follow-up. As a third generation Sarasotan, I love selling

and 50th president. I served as director for the Sarasota

the community I know so well – it is paradise. I want to be

Association of Realtors and graduated from their “Emerging

your Realtor for life. My flyer, “Why live in the Sarasota area”

Leaders Program” in 2009. I have also been named to the

shows the variety we offer. Additionally, through Michael

Florida Realtors Honor Society for the 4th year.

Saunders & Co., every listing is exposed to an enormous pool of buyers via web marketing in 35 countries and over

Why do you think being a native Sarasotan gives you an edge?

2,000 internet sites. My personal website has community/

I’m not just selling a home, I’m selling a lifestyle. I grew up

neighborhood information and a 13-language translation

in Oyster Bay, lived on Siesta Key and now near University

bar and my Facebook page, “Sarasota Insider – A Guide to

Parkway.

Living in Paradise”, is updated daily with local activities. It

Information Center and worked for the developer. I really

also has an MLS link with translation bar so there is world-

know and love our community, am very involved and eager

wide exposure to area properties.

to share my expertise.

I

managed

the

Lakewood

Ranch

SCENE Magazine

|

Visitor’s

Leading The Scene


Judy Cuppy

SENIOR HOME COMPANIONS, INC

3902 Somerset Drive Sarasota, FL 34242 941-924-0494 jcuppy@comcast.net seniorhomecompanions.com Senior

Home

Companions

is

celebrating

its

20th

We’re locally owned with strong ties to the community, and

Anniversary this year. Homemaker services weren’t very

we have a 20 year track record of trustworthy service. I take

common in 1991, what inspired you to start this business?

my senior clients’ wellbeing very seriously. Not only do I visit

We actually were one of the first senior home care companies

all of my clients’ homes, I interview all of our homemakers in

in Florida. I saw a real need for caring in-home services when

their own homes. It takes a lot more time, but then I know

my grandmother was in a nursing home, and I didn’t like her

how they themselves live.

being there. I am very passionate about this because I thought she would be better off at home. People live longer and are

Wasn’t Senior Home Companions recently honored by

happier in their own environment as long as they can stay

the Sarasota Chamber?

there safely. That’s what our homemakers help them do.

Yes, we have been recognized in its Small Business Awards for the past two years.

What does your company do for seniors? In addition to caring companionship and friendship, we assist

You have been very active in the community. What can

with personal care, light housekeeping, meal preparation,

you say about your involvement?

overnight care and respite services for caregivers. We match

The Sarasota County Commissioners have appointed me

homemakers and clients to ensure compatibility and therefore

to the Senior Advisory Council. I also am involved with the

continuity of care. Our caregivers are seniors themselves who

Sarasota Women’s Alliance, the International Women’s

want to stay active and help other seniors remain independent.

Forum, UNIFEM, Tiger Bay Club and the West Coast Black Theatre Troupe. It is very important for people to be involved

Using seniors to help other seniors seems an uncommon

in their community. We have so many dynamic people here

approach. Is there anything else that makes you

who donate their time, talent and money, and that makes a

different from other services?

great community.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Photo by Phyllis Ensley

Barbara Dumbaugh

Michael Saunders & Company 941-350-3743 barbara@newhomeadvice.com newhomeadvice.com

BARBARA DUMBAUGH, REALTOR How does being a Sarasota resident since 1977 help your

What do others consider to be your outstanding attributes?

real estate clients?

I believe that frequent communication and follow up are keys

As a self-described “Ambassador for Sarasota,” I have a vast

to success and I pride myself on my direct feedback and quick

wealth of local knowledge drawn on 34 years of working and

responses to my client’s need. I also believe communication and

volunteering in Sarasota. My experience includes operating a

networking with my colleagues is a critical part of my job, enabling

successful retail operation on St. Armands Circle, working for a

me to promote each of my listings as often as possible.

local builder, and building and remodeling homes myself. I enjoy all aspects of construction and make it a point to help educate

What extras do you offer clients?

each customer regarding understanding home or condo issues.

If needed, my clients enjoy the added benefit of my creative

My daughters, Elizabeth and Victoria, graduates of Riverview and

ability to stage their home. With many years of staging

Pine View, were also involved in many extra-curricular activities.

experience, I have built up quite a collection of furniture, rugs

My experience on all these levels has proved invaluable when

and accessories that I use to maximize the desirability and

assisting new families moving to the area.

therefore the “salability” of each property.

What approach do you take to your real estate business?

How did you become involved with dog agility?

One of my favorite sayings is, “The harder I work, the luckier I get!”

I have always had a love for dogs so after seeing Agility competitions

My family instilled in me an incredible work ethic – get to work

on TV, I became quite intrigued. I started training my Papillon, Titus,

early and leave late. I enjoy all the challenges each day brings

as a puppy and we started competing when he was almost 2 years

and working diligently through them. My husband, John, a Board

old. Now, at 4, Titus has several “Excellent” titles. We frequently

Certified Real Estate Attorney, and I work together as a team.

travel around the state competing. It is definitely a passion of mine

There has never been a problem that we have not been able to

that brings great joy. Thanks to technology, I am able to work from

work through, which gives my clients a great advantage.

anywhere to handle any client needs that arise. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Richard R. Gans

FERGESON, SKIPPER, SHAW, KEYSER, BARON & TIRABASSI, P.A.

1515 Ringling Boulevard, 10th Floor Sarasota, FL 34236 941-957-1900 rgans@fergesonskipper.com fergesonskipper.com

In what areas of the law do you practice?

Elite and as a “Best Law yer in America.”

I’ve specialized in estate planning and estate and trust administration ever since I became an attorney in 1988.

What is your background, and why did you choose estate planning?

What approach do you take with your clients?

I became ver y interested in China throughout college

My first three rules of practice are “Listen, Listen, Listen.”

and into the 1980s, and spent a couple of years living

What good is my technical knowledge if it does not help

in China and honing my Mandarin Chinese skills. The

my clients to accomplish their goals? I try very hard to

same love of learning that led me to Chinese studies

treat my clients as I would want to be treated. I get a lot

led me to ta x and estate planning. I’m ver y analy tical,

of satisfaction from helping people.

which enables me to look at both the legal and practical aspects of a client’s situation to find the right solution.

You have been very active in the legal community

I really do like my job.

and have received a number of recognitions. I have been involved with The Florida Bar on a

You also are very involved in the community.

volunteer basis for many years. I have had a hand in

I have taught the wills and trusts course for the State

draf ting several estate planning laws, and I frequently

College of Florida’s paralegal program for the past

speak at legal education seminars. My work with the

eight years. I serve on the boards of the Community

Bar keeps me on top of new developments, and that

Foundation of Sarasota, the Women’s Exchange,

adds value for my clients. I’m especially proud to have

the Sarasota Concert Association and the Pines of

been selected as a Fellow of the American College

Sarasota Foundation. Sarasota has been good to me

of Trust and Estate Counsel, and am grateful to have

and my family, and I want to give back to the place I

been recognized by my peers as a Florida Trend Legal

call home.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Joe C. Hembree

HEMBREE & ASSOCIATES 1335 2nd Street Sarasota, FL 34236 941-951-1776 info@hembreeco.com hembreeco.com

Hembree & Associates is a full service commercial

associates and is one of the largest commercial brokers in

broker that offers property management and other

Sarasota and Manatee counties.

services. How does that give you an advantage? We work very diligently to make sure we are experts in the

You mentioned that you place a large emphasis on

field. In addition to property management, we do sales and

listening.

leasing, receivership work, tenant representation, and market

We do. We listen to whoever has an interest in the property

research and consulting. I know properties from the ground

to find out what they want. Then we look at the property’s

up. I know what the numbers mean, the cyclics on roofs and

current value and the encumbrances against it and try to

what replacement costs are. I know how to value properties

marry those into an acceptable solution. We step back and

and evaluate best case scenarios for our customers.

find the common ground between the world as it is and the world they would like.

How have you been able to help your clients weather a tough environment?

As a drilling Naval reservist, serving your country is still

We have assembled the most experienced team of

part of what you do.

commercial real estate professionals in the bi-county area

That’s true. I spent 66 days last year in the Middle East. I

who continue to match people successfully with property

also am personally active in the community. Next year, I will

solutions during the downturn. We pursue technologies,

be on the Board of Realtors. I am a graduate of Leadership

and personal connections, that allow us to keep on top of

Sarasota, a member of the Chamber’s Leadership Council,

the market. We do a lot of work with banks, and people

and have served on committees for the Gulf Coast Builders

who are having issues with banks, to position the property

Exchange and Young Professionals Group. I have a lot

to have the best outcome. With this level of expertise,

of optimism about our market and extreme pride in our

Hembree & Associates has grown to 15 commercial

community. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Craig Holliday

3906 Mockingbird Hill Sarasota, FL 34231 941-951-2699 info@hollidaygroup.com hollidaygroup.com

HOLLIDAY GROUP, LLC Holliday Group is recognized for its extensive experience in

How does this impact your work?

commercial construction. What about residential projects?

We run our projects in an environmentally friendly way. My USGBC

We are a commercial contractor, but we also are a high-end

certification training opened my eyes to a multitude of ways, large

custom residential builder with design-build capabilities. In

and small, to minimize jobsite waste and provide a clean and safe

fact, we’ve done everything from a $55 million condominium

jobsite. Little things we’ve enacted such as recycling of building

development to a $15,000 bathroom addition.

materials has reduced the waste we send to the landfills by over 60%. Additionally, a Lido Key project we recently completed is

You emphasize the importance of teamwork and value

proposed for a LEED Platinum rating, the highest rating possible.

engineering, which can be lacking in residential construction. Teamwork is a concept that grew from my father Jim’s teaching.

What type of commercial work do you do?

He was a Sarasota School architect who emphasized the

Our commercial work includes a wide variety of projects from

importance of architects and contractors working together.

freestanding retail and industrial buildings to interior build-outs

Architects create spaces, but those spaces need to work. As

of existing spaces. We also do quite a few restaurants and

a team, we can bring clients exciting ideas and, because they

work with companies such as Tommy Bahama® and Moe’s®

have been value engineered while being designed, there are no

throughout the entire state.

surprises cost-wise. I love it when people try our suggestions and then tell us it turned out gorgeous. When someone is

You have been in this community a long time. What

building their dream home, we do whatever we can to fulfill that

organizations have your support?

dream. The biggest reward for me is when a client calls me to

We support the American Cancer Society, the Boys and Girls

do another job or refers me to a friend.

Clubs, Sarasota County Sheriff, F.D.L.E. and the F.O.P. We are also members of the Gulf Coast Builders Exchange, City of Sarasota

You have your LEED AP certification for green building. Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine

Chamber of Commerce and the Better Business Bureau.


Lynne Koy

COLDWELL BANKER, LONGBOAT KEY Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate 201 Gulf of Mexico Drive, Suite 1 Longboat Key, FL 34228 941-387-1803 LynneKoy.com

You have done consistently well in luxury real estate

trust is there because they know how I work.

sales, ranking in the top one-half of 1 percent of Coldwell Banker agents worldwide and the top 100 in

You were a realtor/broker associate in Chicago early in

Florida. How have you managed to be so successful in

your career. What brought you to Sarasota?’

a down market?

I came here in 1985 to help my parents and didn’t know

It’s a combination of technical knowledge and people

Sarasota at all. What a wonderful and delightful surprise.

skills. I consider myself a problem-solver. I have a lot of

This is a beautiful, magical place, and I hope I convey that

market knowledge, but I’m also a good listener and can

to people.

get a feel for what clients want. From a seller’s standpoint, I understand marketing and have sold virtually all of my

You donate a lot of your time to local causes.

listings. Organizational skills are also critical. I think I have

Yes, I deliver Meals on Wheels. My territory is North Sarasota,

more checklist and systems in place than anyone, and

and I love it. I am a crisis counselor for Safe Place and Rape

that allows us to move along at a good clip. Earlier this

Crisis Center (SPARCC), and I am a Make-A-Wish wish

year, in just 30 days, we closed 12 sales and listed eight

granter.

properties. How do you find time to explore international places What is your approach when working with clients?

and cultures?

I really do believe you treat people as you want to be treated,

While I’m totally dedicated to my business, I like to travel

and I incorporate that into my business practices. I’m a user-

outside the country and have been to Papua New Guinea

friendly person when people need me. It’s so important to

and other places in Indonesia as well as to Africa. I care

build trust, which is done through consistent feedback and

about our community, but travel makes me care about the

responsiveness. That way when we get into negotiations, the

world as a whole. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Tom Liber

THE 8558 GROUP

3665 Bee Ridge Road, Suite #210 Sarasota, FL 34233 941-400-6333 tliber@8558group.com 8558group.com

What exactly does the 8558 Group do?

What sets you apart from your competition?

We are business advisers to the commercial lending industry.

I’d say our ability to gain access to someone who can make a

We work with both lenders and borrowers as a mediator, coming

decision is probably what sets us apart. If you can get access to

up with new and unique ideas to try and save the relationship

the decision maker at a bank, and you can defuse any animosity

between the borrower and the lender, to preserve the business

that exists between the institution and the borrower, that’s 90

in the community.

percent of the battle.

When did you start this business?

How did you gain the experience you need to run this

I started in Destin, Florida, about three and a half years ago.

company? Since the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, I’ve spent the lion’s share of

What prompted you to form your company?

my career helping companies get back on track. When you go

Over the years I’ve managed major companies through

in and work with a company, dismantle it, reorganize it, re-staff

bankruptcy reorganizations. When this recession hit us, it was a

it, refocus its business plan, every one of those experiences is a

natural segue. Debt restructuring is a component of turnaround

tremendous education in business operational concepts.

work. So it was an easy migration for me to make. What is your greatest accomplishment? Your company slogan is, “Advising business in transition.”

Over the last three and a half years, my company has restructured

What does that mean, and how do you do that?

or settled in excess of $10 billion in commercial debt. There have

Part of my job is to come up with options and persuade

been several instances where we’ve gone beyond the issue of

borrowers and lenders to take a course of action that benefits

simply restructuring the debt relationship and helped save the

both. We’ll find people to come in and buy part of someone’s

company. And turned the company around, so that it is actually

debt, for instance.

starting to grow again.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Shelley Lister

ABITAR CONTRACT FURNISHINGS

184 Tall Trees Court Sarasota, FL 34232 941-955-5940 slister@abitarfurnishings.com abitarfurnishings.com You’ve had a 30 year career in the commercial design

have you been working on lately?

and furniture industry. To what do you attribute your

Yes , my work can be seen many places in Florida, including

success?

The Patterson Foundation, College Hall at New College, Premier

I learned a long time ago that customer service is the most

Properties (now Signature Sotheby’s), Lake Club, Palm Aire

important thing. My mission is to create value through excellent

(shown in photo), Ocean Reef Club, to name a few. I also work

customer service and quality products. I’m also an out-of-the-

nationally and internationally and I am currently working on a

box thinker who continually looks for new opportunities to bring

timeshare condominium in Aruba and a restaurant in Bonaire.

more to the table for my customers. I recently joined a large buying group so am able to offer more than 50,000 products

Give us some details about the new business you are

that go beyond just standard design furniture products.

starting that is focused on networking. I am very much known for my networking. In fact, people call

What does your work entail?

me the Networking Queen. Shortly after I came here, I started

We are a full service procurement company that also provides

the PowerNet..Lunch networking group for women and the

furniture planning, move management and project management.

Team Effort Networking (TEN) referral group a year later. I have

We deliver and install everything from furnishings and floor

been encouraged by many people to help others improve their

coverings to millwork, artwork and accessories. I do a lot of

networking skills, so I have founded the Lister Consulting Group.

work in hospitality, but also have experience with condominiums,

I will continue my Abitar Contract Furnishings business, but I

timeshare resorts, healthcare and retirement facilities, shopping

also will be offering networking classes, networking training and

centers, restaurants, corporate and medical offices, banks, and

coaching, business development services and some specialized

educational institutions.

services delivered by other experts. I want people to understand that the secret to being a good networker is to first be willing to

You’ve worked on a lot of high profile projects. What

help others. Never forget the Golden Rule. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Lou Marinaccio

MGA INSURANCE GROUP 9024 Town Center Parkway Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202 941-907-3828 mga-insurance.com

MGA Insurance Group has capabilities beyond what

entrepreneurs get started and assist them in their success.

smaller firms can offer, such as personal and commercial insurance in all 50 states. Why is your firm different?

MGA recently made a very significant investment in

We are a sizeable firm with 46 licensed, well trained employees

technology. What will that do for your customers?

dedicated to serving our community. Another difference is

We invested $2 million to upgrade our customer relationship

that we have direct access to adjustors and claims agents

management and accounting systems. Combined with our

to help make the claim adjudication process easier. We do

call center, that allows us to have 24/7 response time to those

have the ability to write insurance nationally. We relocated

making an inquiry or a claim. We also have a back-up data

MGA from Chicago, IL in 1999 and have been able to attract

port in Atlanta that will get us running within 24 hours should

underwriters here from the East Coast and the Midwest to

we be impacted by a disaster locally.

assist our clients with more choices for insurance. You and your company have been very active in the You’ve also created departments that are devoted

business community and philanthropically.

exclusively to providing comprehensive services to

Yes, even though we are larger than most local insurance

particular types of customers.

firms, we are still a family business. My wife and daughter

Yes, we recently invested in a new department offering

have executive positions here, and we have very strong ties

comprehensive senior care products including Medicare

to this community. I am active in the local Chambers and was

supplement and long term care insurances, advanced

one of the original founders of the Lakewood Ranch Business

planning and assistance with proper use of retirement funds.

Alliance. We are the lead sponsor for the Sarasota Polo Club,

We also have a staff of 8 employees dedicated exclusively

support the Sarasota Manatee Association for Riding Therapy

to personal insurance like homeowners, auto and umbrella

and participate in fundraisers for the Payton Wright and the

policies. On the business side, I personally enjoy helping

Jimmy V Foundations.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Barbara Najmy

PARADISE HOMES

OF

SARASOTA

3750 S. Osprey Avenue Sarasota, FL 34239 941-705-1158 Barbaran@paradisesarasota.com paradisesarasota.com

After a successful career with Michael Saunders &

while maintaining timeless elegance for years to come.

Company, what prompted your to transition into new home sales?

Paradise Homes is building your new home so you

My new position with Paradise Homes as the Director of

certainly understand a homebuyer’s perspective.

Custom Home Sales & Marketing has been a natural and

I place a high value on cultivating long-term relationships with

exciting transition. Some might say it’s a leap of faith. Ever

clients and become intimately acquainted with their preferences

since I was a little girl, I remember finding the design and

and wishes. Today’s buyers, just like me, are seeking high-

architectural elements of homes fascinating. I remember the

end amenities and finishes without compromising quality and

first time I walked into a house built by Paradise Homes, I

value. Paradise Homes offers just that to each of our buyers

was instantly impressed by the outstanding attention to

with its “Jewel Box” Series. The purchase of a new home is

detail, architectural elements, style, and most importantly the

one of the most significant transactions that my clients will

infusion of a terrific lifestyle.

make. I want to be sure to provide the level of service that I myself would expect.

How has your approach to new home sales been influenced by your past experience and what can

Giving back also is important to you.

homebuyers expect when they come to see you?

My husband, Joe, and I truly are blessed with two amazing

With longtime careers in high-end retail and as a Luxury

children. We believe it is important to continue to enrich our

Real Estate Consultant, bringing my boutique-style service

community so that our children and children’s children enjoy

experience to the new home arena is the perfect fit. A home

the benefits. I am a Board Member of the Lakewood Ranch

makes a fashion statement and it’s a haven from the stresses of

Community Fund and my fundraising efforts have benefited

the outside world. I am adeptly qualified to assist my clients in

South Florida Museum and Easter Seals, where my husband

customizing their home to suit their lifestyle, desires and passions

has served on the Board for 15 years. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Kristine Nickel

NICKEL & NICKEL COMMUNICATIONS

941-928-5572 info@kristinenickel.com kristinenickel.com

You are an award-winning communications professional

You also have expertise in media training.

who has worked for many of the leading organizations

I have helped many high-powered executives here better

here, such as Tropicana, FCCI and Tidewell Hospice.

understand the media and how to work with them effectively

How can you help your clients be successful?

while getting their message across. My understanding of

We specialize in helping individuals and organizations craft clear,

how the media works comes from sitting on both sides of the

customized communication strategies, develop appropriate

desk: as a PR professional and as a features writer for many

content and methods of delivery. That could range from a traditional

publications, the Herald Tribune and Sarasota Magazine being

media-based PR campaign to a social media campaign. We’re in

two of my favorites.

such a dynamic, transitional environment; it really takes a pro to come up with a workable plan within a client’s resources that has

What does delivering good value mean to you?

a high degree of creativity to cut through the clutter.

Value means different things to different people. To me, it means achieving the objectives of the client on time

Can you give examples of successful projects?

and on budget with a high degree of professionalism and

Communication is about telling stories, so when the Suncoast

creativity.

Communities Blood Bank celebrated its 60th birthday, we focused on a day in the life of a recipient. We brought in the

Next year, you will chair the well-regarded Town Hall

recipient and many of the donors whose blood saved him.

Lecture Series.

It was a great story, and Good Morning America sent a film

Yes, my passion is the Ringling College Library Association,

crew to the celebration. Recently, I am working with non-profit

which is the largest contributor to the college through funds

organizations at the board level, crafting key communications

raised by the lecture series and is totally run by volunteers. I am

platforms that deliver that organization’s messages to their

really excited by its impact as one of the cultural and intellectual

audiences, telling their story most effectively.

pillars of the community.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Julie Parker 551 North Cattlemen Road, Suite 106 Sarasota, FL 34232 941-341-9774 or 1-877-Lady-Justice japarker@parker-lawfirm.com CallLadyJustice.com

JULIE PARKER, LADY JUSTICE

You are known as Lady Justice. How did you earn that

entire team — we know exactly what our clients are going

name?

through; their feelings and fears...and financial concerns. This

When I founded Parker Law Group 10 years ago, a fellow

is why we are so caring about our clients, and why we fight so

networking member nicknamed me Lady Justice because I

passionately for their rights.

am equally passionate about not only the law, but also the men and women I help during one of the most difficult times

The firm has grown significantly in 10 years. To what do

of their lives. The Lady Justice icon symbolizes unrelenting

you attribute your growth?

strength and fairness, so naturally I was happy when the

Our reputation. At the end of the day, we’re known for being

name stuck.

extremely client focused. We hold their hands through the entire process and make sure they get the medical care and

What does the Parker Law Group do differently for clients?

the compensation they deserve.

As I’m sure you know, some injury attorneys tend to view their clients as numbers. At Parker Law Group, we have a different

It seems that much of your community service supports

belief. In our clients, we see ourselves. And because of that,

children and also individuals with disabilities.

we combine our intense expertise, along with our unique level

Yes, I am a Take Stock in Children mentor, serve on the

of caring, to help people who are injured in accidents to be

Manatee Boys and Girls Club Board of Directors and am

compensated for their injuries.

a past Board Member of Easter Seals. I have a 6-year-old daughter with special needs who is an amazingly talented

In your clients you see yourselves...are you referring to

singer, dancer and artist despite her challenges. Seeing

your own accidents?

how she has overcome those challenges inspires me to help

Yes. In 2009, I was the victim of two severe car accidents

my clients overcome whatever obstacles they face when

which turned my world upside down. So for me — and my

recovering from a challenging life event like an accident. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Jeffery Kin & Michelle Bianchi Pingel

THE PLAYERS THEATRE

838 N Tamiami Trail Sarasota, FL 34236 941-365-2494 info@theplayers.org theplayers.org

The Players has been on quite a roll the past few years,

Pingel: We’ve also surrounded ourselves with great people on

taking a bit of a risk in 2010 with “The Who’s Tommy,”

the staff and empowered them to take leadership. That’s what’s

which was a big hit, and winning the 2011 Sarasota

making us so successful.

Chamber’s Cultural Organization of the Year Award.

Kin: And we have fun.

Pingel: Yes, we also were finalists for the Longboat Key, Lido

Pingel: Even after 11 years, I feel like I’m still volunteering. That’s

Key, St. Armands Key Chamber’s Small Business Awards and

how fun my job is.

the Sarasota Economic Development Corporation’s John Cox Community Partner of the Year.

Why is community theatre important?

Kin: After coming through the past three years of a down

Kin: People don’t know how much we are part of the fabric of

economy, we needed that boost and to feel the joy of being

the community. There’s not an event in town that we don’t help

respected by our peers.

supply costumes, or talent, or support of some kind. Pingel: And, with our performing arts school, we are

What has been the secret to your success?

grooming the future patrons, performers and leaders of

Kin: People ask us what’s our biggest asset.

theatre in this town.

Pingel: It’s our board of directors because they hired us. People have been calling us from across the nation to find out how our

Where is The Players headed in the future?

dual management style works.

Pingel: We need to address funding. We earn 85 percent of our

Kin: Having one person in charge of everything is too much.

income from ticket sales, which is great, but that must change

With dual management, someone looks after creative goals

so we can survive future economic downturns.

and someone looks after financial goals. Michelle and I are very

Kin: And we’re continuing to up the ante and create great

different, but our goals and our vision for the Players is the same.

shows. This is not your Grandma’s community theatre. If you

We want make sure the players is around in another 80 years.

haven’t seen us recently, you haven’t seen us at all.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Alex Quarles

SARASOTA MEMORIAL HEALTHCARE FOUNDATION 1515 South Osprey Avenue, Suite B4 Sarasota, FL 34239 941-917-1286 smhf.org

How do you define your role with Sarasota Memorial

stays that way. Sarasota Memorial is the only nonprofit

Healthcare Foundation?

hospital in the county, so any surplus revenues stay in

I see my role as being an ambassador for the hospital and

our community and can be reinvested in staff, ser vices

an advocate for patients, physicians and staff as well as for

and facilities. The hospital is ver y forward-thinking and

the administration and the board. We can be the creative

always looking at how to do a better job, improve the

mind behind how we continue to move forward and remain a

educational level of physicians and staff and ensure we

trusted organization with high integrity that people can invest

stay ahead of the cur ve in technology. I feel privileged to

in with confidence.

be a part of that.

What does the Foundation do?

What is your philosophy and approach to fundraising?

The Foundation is 35 years old, and its mission is to improve

For me it’s about truly recognizing the value of our donors

the quality of medical care for everyone in Sarasota. It was

and trying to match their particular interest with that of the

set up as autonomous from the hospital, but its goal is to help

hospital. Our relationships are not just built on money, but on

Sarasota Memorial grow, provide the best service possible and

getting to know the individual donor and what’s important

ensure a return on the investments people make in it by having

to them.

a positive impact on the quality of life for people here. We also have the ability to support other organizations that work in

What makes you most proud about the Foundation?

collaboration with the hospital like the Suncoast Communities

I’m very proud that the Foundation was a grassroots

Blood Bank and the Community AIDS Network.

organization formed by a group of individuals who wanted to improve the quality of care for everyone in Sarasota. That

What motivates your work with the Foundation?

vision has helped ensure people are able to stay right here to

We have a fabulous hospital and want to ensure it

receive the best care. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Rev. Don Roberts & Bob Rosinsky

GOODWILL MANASOTA

7501 15th Street East Sarasota, FL 34234 941-355-2721 foundation@gimi.org goodwillindustries.org Goodwill is known as a place to donate goods or to get a

job, housing assistance if needed and coordinate any other

bargain. Where does the money from your stores go?

services required for them to be successful.

Roberts: Goodwill gives individuals opportunities through employment and an evolved social service delivery system

Goodwill Manasota is focusing on obtaining monetary

that impacts the whole family and the community. Creating

donations for its Foundation. Why?

employment is part of that process, targeting people others

Rosinsky: Our vocational programs are totally self-funded,

generally will not hire. Our goal is to help people earn a steady

but we need money in addition to goods to meet our

paycheck and move them into home ownership providing a

mission needs. Because we are a business with a social

more stable environment for the next generation. The stores

purpose, we have expenses for capital requirements and

also help 1.4 million customers annually find bargains on a

our buildings require ongoing maintenance. We also plan

shoestring budget.

to partner with other social service agencies to deliver a greater scope and depth of services more cost efficiently

You say you don’t believe in charity, but a chance. What

– services such as a stronger school-to-work program for

does that mean?

young adults since there are few programs answering the

Roberts: We support the whole person and do whatever it

work needs of those students.

takes to help individuals achieve self-sufficiency. We offer a hand up rather than a hand out.

Is it true that you also help other Goodwill organizations improve their operations?

How does Goodwill Manasota support the whole

Rosinsky: We have helped several Goodwill’s from the brink of

person?

bankruptcy by helping them implement the effective practices

Roberts: A job is the first step, but may not be enough. We

we have developed for operating a mission-integrated

provide life coaches to ensure a person adjusts well on the

donated goods enterprise.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Beverly St. Hilaire Beverly St. Hilaire, ASID, IIDA, LEED®AP 2315 Harbour Oaks Drive Longboat Key, FL 34228 941-504-3303 beverly@sthilairedesign.com sthilairedesign.com FL Licenses #ID5012 & #IB26001283

ST. HILAIRE DESIGN, LLC You have a really broad range of experience with interior

You also work as a realtor in Michael Saunders St.

design across many sectors. What are they?

Armands Circle office.

I have expertise in hospitality, residential, corporate, medical,

Yes, I always thought I wanted to get into the real estate

contract and academic design. I have worked from Los Angeles to

business. I’ve invested in a lot of real estate over the years and

Florida and also internationally over the past 20 years. As a licensed

dealt with architectural design and construction. I’ve been in real

interior designer, I am also accredited by the NCIDQ, National

estate about two years now, and it really is going well. With my

Council for Interior Design Qualification, a Professional member

design background, I can help sellers stage their homes to get

of ASID and IIDA, and now am a LEED Accredited Professional, a

them in the best shape for showing. As a result of many years of

green design certification status under the USGBC.

designing renovations, I also have expertise in assessing costs vs. return on investment.

What are some of the high profile projects on which you’ve worked?

How do you approach your interior design work with

It has been my pleasure to work on some lovely properties like The

clients?

Carolina, a historic hotel at Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina and

The design process is a team effort that should involve and respect

the Washington Duke Inn on Duke University’s campus. Right now,

the vision of the client as well as the designer. I see myself as a

I’m completing a project at the Bird Key Yacht Club and working on

tool clients use to meet their dreams and expectations whether

a new construction home West of the Trail on Floyd. In addition, I am

they have a home or a business. It is the same in real estate.

the consulting “Director of Design” for a firm in Winchester, Virginia

I have to be a very good communicator, and with my design

where I am working on the renovation of a CCRC, Senior Living

background, I can tell them whether a house has the potential

Community. I’ve worked on many other projects as well, all with the

to become their dream home. The end result, in both cases, is a

goal of coming in on concept, on budget and on schedule.

tribute to the client and reflects their unique personality. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Mark Serbin

1500 North Washington Boulevard Sarasota, FL 34236 941-366-0755 serbinprinting.com

SERBIN PRINTING What can you tell us about Serbin Printing?

What sets you apart from your competition?

Serbin Printing has provided leading edge print marketing

First, dedication to our customers’ success is the core driver

solutions for 41 years throughout the Suncoast and around

behind why we continue to invest in people, equipment and

the world. Our goal is to ensure the quality of our products

technology. This allows us to offer our clients the best single-

from “concept to mailbox.” We were the first printer in

source, cost effective, print solutions available in the marketplace.

our market to bring many services together under one

And secondly, more than 50 percent of our employees have been

roof. Those services included electronic typesetting and

with us more than 10 years. Our employees are key to building

prepress, graphic arts, six-color press with integrated

a strong business foundation and supporting our customers’

color control, full-service direct mail operation, and now

growth. This continuity is another reason our customers are

a fleet of cutting edge digital presses and software.

receiving the quality and service they deserve.

Working in concert, these services provide our customers the highest return possible on their marketing and

Do you have an example of a successful marketing campaign?

communication investments.

We partnered with Xerox Corporation in the fourth quarter of 2010 to produce and deploy a national print and mail

How is Serbin leading the Scene?

campaign announcing the debut of its groundbreaking

We offer to businesses of all sizes personalized, direct mail

Color 1000 Press. This multi-piece campaign was extremely

campaigns that were previously only available to large, national

successful and featured sophisticated levels of personalized

companies. Personalized or variable printing allows the

messaging that included each recipient’s personal and

sender to change names, photos, offers, copy, personalized

company name, their salesperson’s name, mailing address

URLs and even QR Codes based on the intended recipient.

and bar code, Variable QR Codes and Personalized URLs.

This kind of customization adds relevance for each recipient,

Exceptional marketing power is how we are able to support

which in turn, leads to higher returns.

the success of every one of our customers, large or small.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


David Sessions

5001 Lakewood Ranch Boulevard North Sarasota, Florida 34240 941-366-3116 info@willissmith.com willissmith.com

WILLIS A. SMITH CONSTRUCTION Besides building and restoring many of Sarasota’s land-

it in 1989 and became CEO in 2000. How have you helped

marks, including the Ringling Museum of Art, Mote Marine

shape Willis A. Smith Construction?

Laboratory and Ringling College, what other projects do you do?

I wear every possible hat imaginable to run this business, set the

We’ve been privileged to participate in projects for both the

strategic direction, and provide the leadership to achieve success.

public and private sector with a strong emphasis on educational,

We’ve hired talented people and empowered them to follow their

performing arts, and green construction. Our education projects

passion and to make decisions that serve our organization by

include the Out-of-Door Academy, Saint Stephen’s Episcopal

providing good value for the customer. Good value means providing

School, Sarasota County Technical Institute, and the rebuild

excellent customer service, a competitive high quality product and

of Booker High School. Our performing arts projects include

always placing the clients’ best interests ahead of our own.

the historical restoration of the Sarasota Opera House and the Historic Asolo Theatre. We also construct healthcare, museum,

Besides the Small Business of the Year for Sarasota and

commercial and religious facilities.

Manatee Counties, and the Service Business of the Year Award from the Sarasota EDC, what other awards has

What projects are you working on now?

your company won?

We recently completed Tervis Tumbler and renovated a Sarasota

We have earned many awards for our sustainable practices, such as

landmark symbol, the courthouse tower. Current projects

the Sarasota EDC’s first ever Green to Gold Award and recently added

include rebuilding much of Booker High School, replacing the

the Keep Manatee Beautiful Award from Manatee County. This year

campus of Sarasota County Technical Institute, and building

we received the President’s Volunteer Service Award for donating

the new School of Dental Medicine at the Lake Erie College of

more than 2,000 hours of community service. Our employees

Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) in LWR.

volunteer their time with 36 local, not-for-profit organizations every year. I truly believe that any successful business has an obligation

You have been with the company since 1988, purchased

to serve this community and make it an even better place. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Tim & Jan Solomon

KEY SAILING

2 Marina Plaza, E-18 Sarasota, FL 34236 941-346-SAIL (7245) keysailingsarasota.com Key Sailing has a reputation more as a lifestyle than a

“Sailing Home — You Can Go Home Again” shares the story of a

simple business. Can you explain?

young flautist from paradise who (with her childhood sweetheart)

We offer our local and global community true rest from the stress

sets out to change the world. When she returns after serving

of daily life. Key Breeze group charters carry only three couples off

in every continent but Antarctica, she discovers the world has

into the sunset, so your “date night” never includes someone else’s

“come to her” marina, right across from the bay front veterans

children. Private charters are affordable for family reunions, sailing

park named in honor of her father. “25,000 Miles from Home”

instruction, birthdays, marriage proposals and even weddings.

shares the inspiring stories of those first 12,000 guests sailing 25,000 miles in less than four years.

You survived a foiled kidnapping while serving as a relief worker in Colombia. How has that affected your

What are some of the accolades you have received in this

business?

short time?

This second chance at life was the gift that inspired our business.

Since 2007, Key Sailing has been recognized as a Sarasota Top

My U.S.C.G. Master Captain/Minister husband Tim and I are still

Five Star Tourist Attraction by Trip Advisor; Official Educational

interacting globally, but there is also a certain mission in serving

Vessel of Sarasota by county proclamation; winner, “Siesta

“Fresh air, fine chocolates, and a few hours of peace on earth.”

Key Business Person of the Year;” winner, Sarasota Chamber

And while I do live with constant pain from the facial nerve

Small Business Awards’ Woman Entrepreneurial Excellence;

damage caused by the Colombian incident, my story is not the

has nominations for environmental excellence, guest service

most touching told from the Key Breeze.

excellence, and “Tourism Leader of the Year” and has been a film site for both motion picture and national television.

As a published author with doctoral work in cross-cultural studies, you focused previously on educational journals

What’s next for the “Key Breeze?”

and religious books. What are your latest projects?

Sailing another “25,000 Miles from Home.”

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Jett Thompson

JETT THOMPSON ANTIQUES & INTERIORS

447 West Dearborn Street Englewood, FL 34223 941-460-2777 jett@jettsantiques.com jettsantiques.com

Jett Thompson Antiques is one of the area’s most eclectic

to consulting on total remodel projects. My clients like a look

and unique shops. What prompted you to open a retail

that feels more natural, less staged and doesn’t feel “done.” It

outlet on Englewood’s historic Dearborn Street?

feels more comfortable to them. I also love re-purposing items

I wanted to help revitalize Dearborn Street. We have a great

into a myriad of different uses to achieve the unexpected.

opportunity to create a quirky Bohemian village that can attract people to the area. I decided to plant my feet there and do

You also have a space in Webster & Co.’s showroom

something different. It was somewhat risky, particularly on the eve

in Naples, and you accessorize room settings there for

of one of the country’s worst financial disasters, but it has done

Ralph Lauren Home.

well and opened new avenues for me in design consulting.

That has been great opportunity for me, and I’ve met some amazing people. Ralph Lauren hosted “accessories queen”

How would you describe your style both in terms of

Charlotte Moss’ book tour kick-off, and she was very compli-

merchandise and your approach to design?

mentary and even bought some pieces from me for her own home.

I buy what inspires and interests me, and hope it will do the same for someone else. I love to mix rustic and organic

Having grown up in Englewood and Manasota Key, how

objects with those that are more refined and polished. I carry

else have you been involved in the community?

antique textiles and antique and vintage furniture like vintage

In addition to being active in the revitalization of downtown

rattan and some Palm Beach Regency style pieces. Much

Englewood, helping the Hermitage Artist Retreat with the

of my stock is sourced from my trips to Africa, Thailand,

work they do to support artists is my passion. I am on the

Vietnam, England, France and Italy.

board, was past president and am very actively involved. Through my travels, I’ve seen amazing artists, and I work with

What type of design consulting do you do?

an organization in Nairobi, Kenya, that ensures village artists

People ask me to do everything from helping them accessorize

get a fair percentage of what is sold. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Dr. Larry Thompson

RINGLING COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN

2700 North Tamiami Trail Sarasota, FL 34234 941-351-5100 info@ringling.edu ringling.edu During your tenure, Ringling College of Art and Design

Community outreach has expanded tremendously with

has become an internationally acclaimed school on its

Art Centers in Englewood and Longboat Key. Now you’re

way to becoming the world’s preeminent art and design

building the Sarasota Museum of Art. What’s your thinking

college. What has led to this success?

behind that?

The recognition we’ve received is the result of our decision to

We’ve always had continuing education, but we wanted to

grow and diversify the curriculum with the addition of eight new

reach out to become the community citizen we really are. Plus,

majors, including digital filmmaking, and we became the first

creativity and design thinking is critical to the future of our

school to offer an undergraduate program in the business of

economy. The number one leadership quality for tomorrow is

art and design to bust the myth of the starving artist. We also

creativity, and we want to be a creative epicenter.

are the world’s most technologically advanced art college. All of that has helped us grow from 850 to 1,400 students. We’re

What about you? You’re a mathematician and attorney by

constantly reinventing to ensure we stay relevant.

training, and you are leading one of the most renowned centers of creativity on the planet.

Ringling College has reshaped a good slice of the north

I definitely am a left brain guy in a right brain world. What

Trail in recent years under your leadership. What’s next?

people may not know is that I also have a master’s degree in

Our campus footprint has expanded with three new buildings,

counseling and education. I love being with people and am

and we are creating a professional post production film studio

passionate about the beneficial impact art has on a person.

that will attract filmmakers here and lead to major economic

I am deeply concerned that art is one of the first things

development opportunities. As it now stands, the College has

to go in budget-strapped schools. We won’t survive with

a local economic impact of at least $100 million a year with the

STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) alone

funds we and our 350 employees spend here as well as our

– we need STEAM – and that’s [adding ‘A’ for] the arts, the

students and parents.

creative part.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Nelda Thompson

NELDA THOMPSON & ASSOCIATES

447 W. Dearborn Street Englewood, FL 34223 941-475-6027 info@neldathompson.com neldathompson.com

Manasota Key is renowned for upscale living in a very

beauty that brought us to this perfect paradise.

relaxed tropical style, and Nelda Thompson Associates is known for being “the” real estate brokerage on the

You actively encourage other realtors to work with you.

Key. How did that come about?

Why is that?

I’ve lived in Englewood and Manasota Key for 42 years, and

We love to co-broke and invite other realtors to bring their

when my husband became ill, I got into real estate sales.

clients to the Key. We enjoy helping them and their clients

Then I got my broker’s license and started this business

discover the beauty of Manasota Key and help them find

in 1988. I realize that Manasota Key is my haven, and 90

properties. We try to work in partnership with other realtors

percent of what we do is on the Key. We know everybody

and let them know they don’t have to have all the answers

and have been the preeminent brokerage almost right from

when it comes to life on the Key. We have the answers.

the beginning. The Key has its own peculiarities, and you really have to know what you are doing to sell real estate

You also have been incredibly active in many community

here. We don’t just show customers properties; we help

organizations. How do you find the time?

them learn about the association and the community.

It does bring additional responsibilities and takes extra hours in the day to raise money for causes, but I am a fifth generation

What is different about selling real estate on Manasota

Floridian and was raised to do things to improve the community.

Key that requires such a high degree of expertise?

I donated a building to be used for a walk in clinic on Dearborn

It is a huge responsibility to know the environmental sensitivities

Street and I am proud to say I helped start The Hermitage Artist

and the special attention required relative to rules and regulations

Retreat and was a founding board member. I also served on the

with the county and the state. We guide buyers so they understand

Venice Regional Medical Center Board for 15 years, am on the

the impact these regulations have in the land use and future value

State College of Florida Foundation Board and just finished a

of the property. After all, it is important we preserve the natural

term on the Gulf Coast Community Foundation Board. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Jaime Wallace

2033 Main Street, Suite 600 Sarasota, FL 34237 941-366-8100 jwallace@icardmerrill.com icardmerrill.com

ICARD MERRILL Tell us about your practice and what attracted you to

but being overly-aggressive is not effective in getting a fair

family law.

agreement. Today, the public is getting more and more

Family law is the real human area of the law, and that is what

educated on family law issues, and the strong role of

attracted me. I deal with marital agreements, divorce, custody

mediation in divorce cases is becoming more widely known.

cases and post-divorce issues like modifications of custody, child

Being competent, prepared, and managing the case well to

support and alimony. I have lots of client contact and some very

get resolution is more effective than being aggressive. It is

dramatic situations can arise. Staying calm and patient helps me

possible to be internally tough and not influenced by the other

guide people through such a life-altering experience.

attorney without being overly aggressive, and in my opinion, that methodology best serves my clients.

You’ve worked in other areas of the law and served at the Florida Supreme Court. How has this helped your work?

What approach do you take to your work?

I’ve practiced law since 1984 and family law exclusively

Because this is such an emotional time for clients, I believe

since 1990. For the first six years, I worked in real estate,

in remaining analytical and taking a realistic and practical

commercial litigation, banking and bankruptcy, which has

approach to achieving the best possible outcome.

been a good foundation. I am very proud to have worked at the Florida Supreme Court as a judicial clerk after law school.

You’ve been very committed to Girls Inc. since 1988

I saw many outstanding attorneys argue cases in Tallahassee,

as a volunteer and board member. What inspires your

and I really was able to hone my analytical skills.

involvement? The girls do, of course. Currently, I’ve put all my energies into

What’s the biggest mistake people make when getting

the Growing Girls Circle. We help girls realize how important

divorced?

it is to be able to support themselves, and we give them skills

People often think they have to get the toughest attorney,

to become self-sufficient.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


Dave Whalen

LAUREL OAK COUNTRY CLUB

2700 Gary Player Boulevard Sarasota, FL 34240 941-378-3608 generalmanager@laureloak.com laureloak.com

In the six years you have been with Laurel Oak Country

How would you describe your leadership style?

Club, you have brought it through some major changes

I’m a very service oriented person who anticipates members’

in the midst of a tough economy.

wants, and that philosophy encompasses the whole staff. I

The club has come a long way since I started and is thriving, but

let every employee know that they are empowered to own a

it’s because of the hard work of many people. My challenge was

problem and solve it. Staying sharp professionally through

to oversee the completion of a major renovation, address the

continuing education and professional involvement also is a

financial realities, ensure our amenities are top tier and create

strong value, and I’ve been very active in leadership positions

policies to make membership very attractive. Today, we have

with the Club Managers Association and have earned its

a beautiful 45,000 square foot clubhouse, 36 well-conditioned

Honor Society Pin.

holes that includes our redesigned Rees Jones course, and have not had to increase dues for a couple of years.

Of what are you most proud? Many things. One is the generosity of our members who have

What are your goals for the club in terms of lifestyle

rallied to support one of our pros who has prolonged health

and amenities?

issues as well as the Special Olympics and All Children’s

I want to ensure we continue to be warm and welcoming in

Hospital. We have also recently completed the certification

a comfortable, family-oriented environment because clubs

requirements with the Audubon Society for environmentally

are about socializing, hanging out with old friends and

friendly practices; however, I am most proud of how our

making new friends. We’ve been successful attracting many

employees have reacted to a tough economy. Regardless

younger professionals who like making business connections

where they work, everyone makes sure all areas are running

and enjoying time with their families here. They find value

smoothly. We want members to think they can’t afford to

in the lifestyle the same as our members who are enjoying

leave because they will never get our level of dedication

retirement.

anywhere else. SCENE Magazine

|

Leading The Scene


Peter Wozniak

VENICE REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER

540 The Rialto Venice, FL 34285 941-485-7711 peter.wozniak@hma.com veniceregional.com

Do you think starting your career as a registered nurse

one of the country’s Top 100 Hospitals and a Top 50

has given you a different perspective than you might

Cardio Hospital by Thompson Reuters. To what do you

have had otherwise as CEO?

attribute these achievements?

Starting as an oncology nurse, I learned about what it takes

Venice Regional is not just a quiet community hospital

to work bedside with patients and their families. It taught me

that transfers critical patients. For instance, time is a

that you constantly must strive for good outcomes and that

critical factor in a stroke patient’s recovery, and our

service is vital. People know when the room is not sparkling

door to drug time is one of the best in the country. Plus,

or the food is not good. You also must treat people like

our doctors and staff are particularly sensitive and well

people and focus on their needs instead of yours. That’s part

able to handle the unique medical needs of older adults.

of servant leadership.

We also have the latest da Vinci® SiTM robotic surgical system, a leading edge Cath Lab, and the county’s only

Why do you place such an emphasis on servant

MAKOplasty® capability for knee replacement.

leadership? Because its three guiding principles lead to success. After

The hospital has a robust philanthropic program,

you focus on others first, then it’s about doing the right thing

and you’ve been doing some fundraising yourself

in the moment to meet the needs of patients, and those with

lately.

whom you work. The third principle is never to settle. Do a

Yes, I had a great time chairing the American Cancer Society’s

great job, feel good for a couple of minutes and then move

Relay for Life event in Venice earlier this year, and I was also

on to the next level.

honored to chair the American Heart Walk benefitting the American Heart Association in Sarasota in September. As one

Venice Regional Medical Center has earned some

of the nation’s top hospitals, it’s important that we act like a

significant recognition recently, including being named

leader in the fight to save lives.

Leading The Scene

|

SCENE Magazine


For the man who knows ...who he is ...where he’s going ...and how to get there

Precision Hair Cuts Skin Care

Hair Coloring

Spa Packages

Hair Removal Waxing

Massage Therapy

Thinning Hair Products

Hand and Foot Detail

JustGents

Spa Body Treatments

R

Sarasota’s GentEssential BarberSpa 126 North Orange Avenue Sarasota, Florida 34236 www.Just-Gents.com 941.330.9100

Straight Razor Shaves

SM

Shoe Shine


                                         

  



  

   

FOREVER BETTER


PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE PAID MANASOTA, FL PERMIT #88

$3.95 U.S.

BUILT FOR SEEING THE BIG PICTURE IN TRODUCING PNC W E A LTH IN SIG H T WE K NOW YOU WA N T A SIMPLER WAY to view your investment

portfolio. We know because we asked, and what we heard helped us develop PNC Wealth Insight. It’s a powerful tool for working with your PNC advisor and getting a deeper understanding of your portfolio so you can make better decisions.

BUILT FOR ACHIEVEMENT To learn how P N C W E A LT H I N SIG H T can help you live achievement, call Matthew Lowell Bower at 941-363-5060 or visit pnc.com/wealthinsight

WEALTH PLANNING

TRUST AND ESTATE PLANNING

PRIVATE BANKING

INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT

PNC Wealth Management is a service mark of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (“PNC”) that is used by PNC to provide investment and wealth management, fiduciary services, FDIC-insured banking products and services and lending and borrowing of funds through its subsidiary, PNC Bank, National Association, which is a Member FDIC, and to provide certain fiduciary and agency services through its subsidiary, PNC Delaware Trust Company. PNC does not provide legal, tax or accounting advice. Investments: Not FDIC Insured. No Bank Guarantee. May Lose Value. ©2011 The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. All rights reserved. GEN-6636


2011 Leading the Scene