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A Cultural Experience

Travelogue: Seven continents and more than 40 countries. When Javed Kapadia isn’t busy running his own insurance agency, the 39-year- old Naples resident heeds a calling to tour the globe, largely for its teach- able moments.

“Having traveled to so many differ- ent places, I’ve learned so much more about the world and about other peo- ple, cultures, values and everything from food to religion,” he says.

His exposure to diversity, which includes experiences in Southwest Florida, helped influence the way he does business and spends time away from work. He employs staff that speaks a variety of languages, includ- ing Spanish, Creole and Portuguese. Off the clock, he’s part of an inter- faith panel that holds a ceremony each year to celebrate different reli- gions—from Judaism and Hinduism to Christianity and Islam, the latter a religion he knows about (he is a Muslim whose heritage is Pakistani).

“I’ve seen how different we are in so many ways, but yet similar,” he says. “Everybody has the same belief. I think it has definitely made me a better person.”

Kapadia is among six honorees celebrated in the 2016 Face Awards, which was created by Gulfshore Business and D’Latinos magazines to recognize businesses and individ- uals who reflect the positive values and the ethnic diversity in Southwest Florida. One important criterion for receiving the award is one who serves as a role model for others, which Kapadia certainly does.

His story and those of the other recipients begin on p. 16. On March 18 they will be celebrated at our annual awards gala and dinner at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa in Bonita Springs. The program will include videos of each winner and presentation of a $3,000 scholarship to an outstanding Southwest Florida high school senior. You, too, are invited to meet our honorees, in person, at the event. Please visit faceswfl.com for informa- tion.


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