Coconut Point Hospital Gets Preliminary Approval

Plus: New nonstop flights are offered, the Everglades Coalition gets a new co-chair, employee-focused luncheons are scheduled, and staff credentials are earned.

Need to catch up on business news in Southwest Florida? No problem. Here are the top stories of the week pulled from our daily newsletter, Gulfshore Business Daily

Friday, June 8

Allegiant Offers Nonstop Service from Nashville to Punta Gorda

Allegiant has launched nonstop service from Nashville, Tennessee, to Southwest Florida via Punta Gorda Airport (PGD). Limited one-way fares are currently being offered at an introductory price $41, if purchased by June 9 for travel between June 14 and Aug. 17. The new year-round service will operate twice weekly between Nashville International Airport (BNA) and Punta Gorda Airport (PGD). With this addition, Allegiant offers nonstop service from 41 cities to Punta Gorda Airport (PGD). Flight days, times and fares can be found at

Thursday, June 7

Carrozzo to Co-Chair Everglades Coalition

Marisa Carrozzo, a senior environmental policy specialist at the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, has been named the new co-chair for the Everglades Coalition. The Everglades Coalition is an alliance of more than 60 local, state and national environmental organizations focused on restoring the Greater Everglades Ecosystem, an area that stretches from Central Florida through the Florida Keys. Carrozzo has worked at the Conservancy since 2011 and is responsible for developing and implementing policy initiatives for water resources and environmental issues impacting the western Everglades. Shortly after graduating from Miami University in Ohio, Carrozzo held a position as a conservation associate in the Conservancy’s policy department. Carrozzo has more than seven years of experience in natural resource policy at the local, state and federal level. Carrozzo will serve a two-year term as co-chair. Some of her duties include oversight and coordination of coalition activities and events, setting meeting agendas and budgets, representing the coalition at public events and meetings, securing sponsorships and facilitating meetings.

Wednesday, June 6

Coconut Point Hospital Gets Preliminary Approval

Lee Health has received preliminary approval from the Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA) to build an 82-bed hospital tower at Lee Health–Coconut Point. The application for an 80-bed hospital in Estero also received approval. In addition to Lee Health’s application and supporting materials, AHCA received 550 letters of support for a Lee Health hospital from residents, community leaders, dignitaries and physicians from various specialties throughout Southwest Florida. The preliminary approval is another step toward a hospital in South Lee County, but the AHCA’s Certificate of Need process includes an established challenge period following the announcement.

Tuesday, June 5

Above Board Chamber Meetings Upcoming

The June Above Board Chamber of Florida luncheon meetings will focus on assembling the right team of employees for your business. The first meeting will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on June 11 at the Hilton Naples. Attendees of the Naples luncheon will hear from Southwest Florida business leaders to get a better understanding of the dynamics and strategies for dealing with an ever-evolving and diverse workforce. Panelists include Vicki Thomas Tracy, executive director of sales and marketing at The Arlington of Naples; Robin Larkin, principal at Performance Management Associates; Denise Perchall, business development manager at PEO; and Lori Burke, director of human resources at Sunshine Ace Hardware. John Huttner, president and CEO of Hollinger Jobs, will emcee the event. The next luncheon will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on June 14 at Crowne Plaza Fort Myers at Bell Tower. Attendees of the Fort Myers meeting will get a better understanding of how to build the right company business culture. Panelists include Jeff Mulder, executive director of Lee County Port Authority; Mike Kiser, vice president ASMB recruiting, Gartner; and Florice Hodges, community outreach and network marketing for Best Homes Services. Steve McQuilkin, storytelling coach at The New-Press Media Group, will emcee. The cost to attend each event is $29 for members and $34 for nonmembers on or before June 4 for the Naples events and June 7 for the Fort Myers event. After, it’s $32 for members and $38 for nonmembers. Register at or call (239) 910-7426. 

Monday, June 4

Collier Elections Staff Earn MFCEP Credentials

Three staff members from the Collier County Supervisor of Elections office recently received Master Florida Certified Elections Professional (MFCEP) designations by the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections (FSASE). Kerry Black, Aixa Capizzi, and Heather Doane were presented with their MFCEP credentials on May 22, during the FSASE 2018 Annual Summer Conference in Fort Lauderdale. The MFCEP certification is awarded to those who complete three levels of Florida Certified Elections Professional (FCEP) training, including legal and managerial foundations, management processes and procedures, and organizational development. The objectives of the FCEP program are to increase the knowledge and skill levels of elected officials and their staff in Florida, provide incentives to supervisors of elections and their staff to continually enhance their levels of professional and personal development, and share common perspectives, issues, and challenges in a structured, collegial atmosphere. The Collier County Supervisor of Elections office currently has 12 staff members designated as Master Florida Certified Elections Professionals. For more information about the FCEP program or the FSASE, visit

Publicly Traded Companies

BBGI Declares Cash Dividend

Beasley Broadcast Group Inc. board of directors have declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.05 per share of its Class A and Class B common stock.  The dividend is payable on July 6 to shareholders of record on June 29. While the company intends to pay regular quarterly cash dividends for the foreseeable future, all subsequent dividends will be reviewed quarterly and declared by the board of directors at its discretion.

In other news...

Naples entrepreneur Andrew Kobza founded Naples Drone Solutions company to help real estate and construction clients and more. Read more about it here

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