Gulfshore Business Daily: July 18, 2018

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Lee County Veteran Services is offering a new, monthly outreach program in Lehigh Acres and Pine Island for veterans, their dependents and surviving family members. Lee County Veteran Services counsels and educates veterans, their dependents and survivors on the potential benefits available to them from the Department of Veterans Affairs as well as other governmental agencies. Guidance is offered in areas such as compensation, pensions, education, survivor benefits and more. The Lehigh Acres program is located at the Lehigh Acres Senior Center. A Veteran Service Officer is there from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month. The Pine Island program is located at Beacon of Hope. A Veteran Service Officer is there from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the first Friday of each month. Veterans, as well as survivors, can call (239) 533-8381 to schedule an appointment in Lehigh Acres and (239) 283-5123 in Pine Island. Walk-ins also are welcome. The contact at the Senior Center is Melissa Barry at (239) 369-5355. The contact at Beacon of Hope is Betsy Haesemeyer at (239) 283-5123.


The Southwest Florida Regional Technology Partnership (RTP) invites parents, students, school representatives, volunteers and others interested in robotics technology to a free event about the For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) robotics competition program. The public event will take place from 6-8:30 p.m. on Aug. 2 at the IMAG History & Science Center in Fort Myers. Registration is open at The Technology Partnership has supported local FIRST teams for three years and has a shared goal with IMAG to excite kids about science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM) education in Southwest Florida. Through FIRST, kids have the opportunity to explore technology from engineering to videography, from programming to business applications. The IMAG is hosting the event to help inform the Southwest Florida community about FIRST.


Steven M. “Steve” Smith has been named executive vice president/general manager of the Gulf Citrus Growers Association (GCGA). He will begin his employment at GCGA on Aug. 1. Smith previously was employed by Alico Inc., Babcock Ranch Management and the Peace River Valley Citrus Growers Association (PRVCGA), where he served as executive director. Smith graduated from the University of Florida, where he majored in agricultural operations management. During his multi-year career, he has served on the Florida Citrus Commission, the Gulf Citrus Growers Association’s board of directors and the Florida Citrus Mutual board of directors.


Mark Rodgers has joined Sanibel Captiva Community Bank as a loan officer at the Gateway Branch in Fort Myers. He is responsible for originating commercial and residential real estate loans. With more than 15 years of banking experience, Rodgers moved to Southwest Florida in 1981 and has held numerous banking positions, including assistant vice president of mortgage loans and commercial lending and vice president of private banking. Rodgers attended Florida Junior College at Jacksonville and is also a licensed health care risk manager in the state of Florida. A member of Kiwanis, Rodgers was on the founding board of directors of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southwest Florida and served on the Associated Home Health Industries of Florida board of directors.


Spiro Custom Pools has moved to new offices at 2739 Oak Ridge Court, Suite 202, in Fort Myers. The move marks the pool contracting company’s growth in operations and allows the company to better serve its clients. The company specializes in residential and commercial custom pool and spa design, construction, maintenance and renovation and offers 3D renderings of final designs. For more information, call (239) 703-7294 or visit


Through its Golden Gate Senior Center, Collier Senior Resources (CSR) has launched the Direct Assistance Program for Needy Seniors. The program compliments CSR’s free services for seniors, filling in the gap for those most at-risk by providing one-time financial support to meet the most basic of human needs. To qualify, individuals must be 60 years of age or older and residents of Collier County living within 175 percent of the federal poverty level. The one-time financial assistance can be used for medical prescriptions and eyeglasses, utility shut-off notices, rent or mortgage payments, durable medical equipment, small appliances, gas cards, or additional items on a case-by-case basis. For more information, call (239) 252-4541 or visit​​

Charitable Notes​

Caloosa Jeepers SWFL support breast cancer care

The Caloosa Jeepers SWFL has awarded Partners for Breast Cancer Care Inc. $24,000 to fund breast screening, diagnostic testing, surgery and treatment for uninsured, low-income women and men in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry & Glades County. The funds were raised during the 7th Annual Caloosa Jeepers Go Topless Day, held May 18-19 and presented by Galeana Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram Fiat and Lazy Springs Recreation Park in association with All Things Jeep.

Three professional comics to join SalusCare comedy night

Three nationally recognized professional comedians will perform at the fourth annual “Laughter Is the Best Medicine Comedy Night,” held on Aug. 18 at the Broadway Palm, to benefit SalusCare Inc. Professional comedian Michael Palascak will return for the fourth time and serve as emcee for the evening and perform a stand-up comedy routine. Fellow professional comedians Pat McGann and Dwayne Perkins also will perform. The three comedians will join four local professionals—Gina Birch, radio-TV personality; Dr. Michael Martin, Florida Gulf Coast University president; Eric Raddatz, Fort Myers Film Festival founder and Florida Weekly presentation editor; and Amy Bennett Williams, The News-Press staff writer—who will perform and compete for two awards chosen by the audience. Tickets are $150 each, including heavy hors-d’oeuvres, drinks and the show, and are available at

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