Gulfshore Business Daily: February 21

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Tickets and sponsorship opportunities are available for Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida’s 2020 Business Hall of Fame, Lee County, which will induct Sarah Owen, president and CEO of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, and William T. Prather, owner and executive producer of Broadway Palm, into its Business Hall of Fame. Owen and Prather will be honored during a dinner and awards ceremony on April 16 with a cocktail reception at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa in Bonita Springs. The award recognizes outstanding entrepreneurs who serve as role models for youth through their professional accomplishments and commitment to the community. Business sponsorships are available. Individual seats are available for $250 each. Sponsors are needed to support student admission, which is $125 per ticket. Additionally, full-page and half-page advertisements are available in the event program book. For more information, visit or call (239) 225-2590. Proceeds benefit local Junior Achievement programs.


The number of Conservation 20/20 acres that the Lee Board of County Commissioners has voted to purchase has now surpassed 30,000. The county will celebrate this milestone in March with dozens of events highlighting the Conservation 20/20 program, including a ribbon-cutting event at 10 a.m. on March 10 at Prairie Pines Preserve,18400 N. Tamiami Trail, North Fort Myers, with guided hikes and also a recognition of the month-long celebration at the Board of County Commissioners meeting, held at 9:30 a.m. on March 3. Other activities throughout the month include presentations and informational displays at libraries, guided walks at various preserves, an online trivia game, a full-moon walking event, a birding seminar, and Calusa Blueway paddling trail outings. For event details, visit The website also offers interactive maps.


The Leadership Collier Foundation, of the Greater Naples Chamber, is now accepting applications for the Class of 2021 Leadership Collier program. Leadership Collier was formed by the Chamber in 1988 to develop a network of informed citizens prepared to assume leadership roles in the community. Through hands-on experiences, participants fully explore local government, education, economic development, the arts and more to understand the community’s biggest opportunities and challenges. With the benefit of new perspectives and connections, graduates of Leadership Collier are prepared to take their places as effective community leaders. This program runs from September through April and includes 10 full-day sessions. Program tuition is $2,200, which is due upon acceptance to the program. A limited amount of partial tuition assistance may be available to those accepted. The two-part application must be submitted by March 27. To apply, visit


Joint Replacement Institute has Daniel J Harmon, D.O., a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon specializing in adult reconstruction of the hip and knee, including revision joint replacement. Harmon graduated from John Carroll University where he obtained his Bachelor of Science degree with Honors. He attended medical school at The Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) in Erie, Pennsylvania, also with honors. Harmon completed his five-year orthopedic surgery internship and residency at The Cleveland Clinic Foundation/South Pointe Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio. During residency, he served as an assistant clinical professor for Ohio University College of Medicine. He also completed a one-year Fellowship in Adult Reconstruction of the Hip and Knee at Alleghany General Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Harmon has had extensive sub-specialty training in minimally invasive muscle sparing surgical techniques for reconstruction of the hip and knee. Harmon is a member of the American Osteopathic Association, The American Osteopathic Academy of Orthopedics, The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Florida Osteopathic Medical Association, Lee County Medical Society, and The International Congress for Joint Reconstruction. 


Valerie’s House is helping people struggling with grief through its monthly podcast, “Grieve Love Heal.” The Valerie’s House podcast is now listed on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google Podcasts. Listeners can subscribe and receive alerts on their devices when Valerie’s House posts a new episode each month. Valerie’s House families, and others in the community, who have walked the grief journey are often interviewed for the segments. Recent Grieve Love Heal podcast episodes have touched on topics like grieving as a young adult, losing a mother to breast cancer and going back to school after the death of a parent. Produced by Valerie’s House Communications Coordinator and former NBC2 Executive Producer April Reilly, the Grieve Love Heal podcast also serves as a resource for those looking to support someone who is grieving. Valerie’s House launched the Grieve Love Heal podcast in September 2019 and made it available to various public channels in February. To listen to the Grieve Love Heal podcast, search for “Valerie’s House” or “Grieve Love Heal” on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Google.

Sidebar 505


Longtime Naples friends Marty Kenney and David Ladic have opened Sidebar 505 on the Fifth Street side of the three-story building on the northeast corner of Fifth Avenue South and Fifth Street South, next door to Bluemercury, the national beauty products retailer and space. The building also houses two floors of residential condos above. The 1,500-square-foot location is a speakeasy-inspired cocktail den. The attention is on great cocktails in a relaxed setting. Sidebar 505 focuses on 80-plus whiskeys and bourbons, locally inspired cocktails and hard-to-get wines. There is no kitchen so there’s no plan to serve food, although patrons may have food delivered from more than 20 nearby Fifth Avenue South restaurants. Kenney, who grew up on Marco Island, has also founded Pelican Larry’s, Joey D’s Pizzeria and Soul Bowls restaurants. For more information, call (239) 272-2167.

Veronica LeBlanc


Veronica LeBlanc, Sanibel Captiva Community Bank’s vice president and Gateway branch office manager, has been elected to the Southwest Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce board of directors. LeBlanc joined Sanibel Captiva Community Bank in 2017 to lead the bank’s Gateway branch. She has nearly 15 years of banking experience. LeBlanc is an active community servant serving as a board member and treasurer of the Kiwanis Club of Fort Myers-Gateway. She is a longtime volunteer for the United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades and Okeechobee Counties and has served on allocations committees since 2017. In addition, she has dedicated her time to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida, Blessings in a Backpack and Pace Center for Girls of Lee County.

Jon S. Johnston


EHC, Inc., a construction company that provides pre-construction, earthwork and infrastructure services, welcomes Jon S. Johnston to the team as business development manager. Prior to joining EHC, Johnston was a sales manager of Schwab Ready Mix as well as sales manager of Eagle Concrete. Johnston is originally from Maine and graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a degree in business management. For more information on EHC, visit


Literacy Council Gulf Coast’s fashion fundraiser a success

Literacy Council Gulf Coast hosted its annual Passion for Fashion fundraising event on Feb. 5. The event featured clothing from Chico’s FAS. FOX 4 anchor Shari Armstrong served as the emcee and Kitty Green, Florida Gulf Coast University’s (FGCU) vice president, university advancement and executive director, FGCU Foundation, gave the keynote address. The fashion show was complete with lunch, a glass of champagne, and silent auction. Celebrating over 30 years of excellence in education, Literacy Council Gulf Coast (LCGC) helps adults and children acquire the literacy skills necessary to improve their quality of life. For more information, visit

Humane Society Naples raises $1 million-plus with annual gala

Humane Society Naples set an organizational record with more than $1 million raised during its 20th annual Pet Lovers Gala on Feb. 15. Leading the fundraising charge were Patty, Jay and Kizzie Baker, who pledged $500,000 at the event, which was held at the Naples Yacht Club. The event served as the unofficial kick-off to the organization’s 60th anniversary year, which starts in May. Humane Society Naples honored the following 19 co-chairs for their contributions to the organization over the decades: Jay and Patty Baker; Joanne and Harmon Brown; Jennifer Conery; Richard and Amy D’Amico; Judith LeDoux; Al and Teresa Geiss; Patricia Murphy; Tom and Joan Sabatino; Alan and Donna Schneider; Dolph and Sharon von Arx; and John and Carol Walter. The organization also honored co-founder and former president emeritus Lori Keller Stuber, who died in 2019. Prior to the event, which was hosted by Naples Yacht Club members Gail and Jim Lozelle, a VIP reception was held aboard Paws for Life, a yacht owned by the Walters. ABC7 anchor Krista Fogelsong served as emcee during the gala. For more information, visit

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