Gulfshore Business Daily: October 15

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BMP Logic unveils IRIS.


Three Lee County regions were named to WalletHub’s 2019’s Fastest-Growing Cities in America list. Lehigh Acres topped the charts at No. 1, followed by Fort Myers at No. 6, and Cape Coral at No. 9. To determine where the most rapid local economic growth occurred over a period of seven years, WalletHub compared 515 U.S. cities across 17 key metrics. The data set ranges from population growth to college-educated population growth to unemployment rate decrease. In addition, WalletHub produced a separate ranking by city size. For the full report, click here



Kevin Ahmadi has been named Nonprofit Executive of the Year through the Cape Coral Community Foundation’s Excellence in Nonprofit Performance Yearly (ENPY) awards program. Ahmadi is area director of operations for Volunteers of America, a national nonprofit, faith-based organization with a growing presence in Southwest Florida. In his role, Ahmadi oversees Gulf Coast Village, the Palmview assisted living and memory care facility, and Senior Choice at Home. The ENPYs is an annual awards competition created to recognize top organizations and individuals for their service and dedication to the people of Southwest Florida. This year’s awards program drew 154 nominations, more than doubling the amount received in prior years. Ahmadi, who joined Gulf Coast Village in 2004, is helping Volunteers of America establish two new senior living communities in Southwest Florida: The Preserve and The Colonnade of Estero.



Florida Gulf Coast University’s (FGCU) Lutgert College of Business hosted its fourth Business Ethics Case Competition. Sarah Logan and Harrison Wright made the winning presentation of the case “Boeing 737 Max dilemma,” which addressed how the Boeing corporation can move forward and restore trust with its customers given the two airplane crashes that resulted in the loss of life of everyone aboard. Logan is an accounting major from Naples and Wright is a computer information systems major from St. Louis, Missouri. The judges included Jennifer Nelson, Uncommon Friends Foundation; Dr. Jerry Schoenfeld, FGCU management department chair; and Dr. Craig Randall, FGCU management department. The FGCU winning team qualified to represent the university at the Collegiate Ethics Case Competition at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Oct. 17-19. FGCU is one of only 25 universities to be invited to this competition. The team will be advised by professor Chrissann Ruehle; Dr. Eric Dent, Uncommon Friends endowed chair professor of ethics; Schoenfeld and Randall.


BMP Logic unveils IRIS.


BMP Logic unveiled custom software for farmers that will mean a lot less kicking dirt and more making smart irrigation and fertilizer decisions from charts in the cloud. The software, IRIS, was developed by Stickboy in Fort Myers and stands for Irrigation Real Time Intelligence System. Soil moisture probes are installed by BMP Logic slurry-free. The probes have sensors attached at different depths. Those sensors in the ground communicate with the IRIS platform, which lives in the cloud so it can be accessed virtually anywhere. Each farmer has a profile and with easy-to-read charts, and IRIS helps farmers visualize when to irrigate. With IRIS, farmers can see rooting depth in order to keep track of soil water levels. That means growers can make informed decisions to help ensure irrigation is applied at the right time, at the right rate and down to the right levels. For more information on IRIS or soil moisture probes, call (352) 224-9427.


Dr. Whitesides and Dr. Verwest


Pediatric Dentistry of Florida, Dr. Tim M. Verwest, DMD & Associates, have added full-service orthodontic services and treatment to complement its pediatric dental services. Orthodontist Dr. Joseph Whitesides will provide exclusive oversight for patients of the practice. Complimentary evaluations for braces are being offered to the general public and patients of the Pediatric Dentistry of Florida. The dental office is encouraging those to refer their friends for braces. If you refer a friend and they sign up for orthodontic services you will receive your choice of two tickets to one of the following theme parks: Disney, Busch Gardens or Universal Studios. To schedule a complimentary orthodontic evaluation, visit, or call (239) 482-2722.



Pavese Law Firm has added two new attorneys. Alton Kuhn will practice in the areas of real estate development, commercial and residential transactions, condominium and homeowners’ association law, and business law. Vanessa Fernandez will practice in the areas of real estate and condominium and homeowners’ association law. Kuhn earned his bachelor’s degree in history and master’s of education in secondary social studies from the University of Florida. He graduated from the University of Florida Levin College of Law with his Juris Doctor. Kuhn was admitted to the Florida Bar in 2007. Fernandez graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University, magna cum laude, with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy. While attending FGCU, she worked as a court reporter. She earned her Juris Doctor from the University of Florida Levin College of Law. Fernandez was admitted to the Florida Bar in 2019.



Gulfshore Homes announces all eight of its on-site supervisors successfully completed the Florida Stormwater Inspector Training Program. These employees are now certified by the state of Florida to evaluate and implement best management practices in an effort to minimize erosion and sedimentation, and properly manage stormwater runoff before, during and after the new home building process. Inspector-level certifications also avoid potential code and permit obstacles, and reduce the workload of county inspectors by providing them with necessary pre-build data reports on soil, drainage and discharge points.  For more information, visit


Amber Barr, Ashley Guttierez, TSIC President and CEO Jillian Hasner, Thalia Vasquez, Evelyn Predelus. PHOTO CREDIT: The Immokalee Foundation


For the seventh consecutive year, The Immokalee Foundation has earned the statewide Gold Level of Excellence Award from Take Stock in Children. The Gold Level of Excellence is reserved for Take Stock’s local affiliates that meet high marks on its Balanced Scorecard indicators. These include student recruitment, mentor pairing, timely advocacy, two-year action plan, student growth, increased GPAs, and EDGAR self-certification—which indicates compliance with federal education funding guidelines. The nonprofit organization was recognized at the annual Take Stock in Children Leadership Summit & Day at the Capitol in Tallahassee. For more information, visit



Community Foundation of Collier County distributes $3 million in grants

The Community Foundation of Collier County has distributed more than $3 million in 527 grants in the first quarter of the 2019-20 fiscal year ending Sept. 30 to nonprofit agencies and scholarships for secondary education and specialized training. Of the $1,028,144 distributed from donor-advised fund grants, 74% ($763,783) stayed in Collier County to benefit organizations and students in the community. Included in the grants are $10,000 to the Greater Naples YMCA and $15,000 to Literacy Volunteers of Collier County from the Angel Fund for Nonprofits Giving Circle for the Families Learning English program. The Community Foundation Program is now accepting grant applications for Human Services Grants and Education or Employment Grants through Nov. 4. Eligibility guidelines and further information is available here.


Bell Tower hosting ‘Puppies & Pilates’ Saturday

Bell Tower is partnering with Club Pilates to host Puppies & Pilates from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday at Center Court inside Bell Tower. The bring-your-own-dog event features a Pilates class and treats for both pets and humans. Shannon Willits, owner of two Club Pilates locations in Fort Myers, will lead the fitness class. Participants are encouraged to bring a yoga mat, water and sunscreen in addition to a well-behaved, leashed dog. Pre-registration is not required, and the event is free, but participants are encouraged to bring donations for the Gulf Coast Humane Society. The shelter accepts monetary donations as well as pet-related items. For a complete wish list, visit


Tickets now on sale for WolfStock: A BrewFest and Food Truck

Tickets are now available for WolfStock: A BrewFest and Food Truck event, featuring performances by The Ben Allen Band and local musician Justin Ross. WolfStock will be held from 4-8 p.m. on Nov.16 at Riverside Park in Bonita Springs. A full line-up of local breweries will be on hand, many serving brews named for Shy Wolf residents. Breweries include Naples Beach Brewery, Palm City Brewing, Crazy Dingo Brewery, Fort Myers Brewing, Momentum Brewhouse, Oil Well Craft Beers, Point Ybel Brewing Co., Riptide Brewing Co., Millennial Brewing and Big Top. Ten local food trucks will also be selling their fare, including: JD’s Chuck Wagon, Kiss My Ice, Wicked Streatery, Nawty Hogg, Gator Johns, Kings Tacos, Dave’s Cosmic Subs, Bear Dozen Donuts, Dynamite Street Eatz and I Love Curry. All proceeds from the event will support Shy Wolf Sanctuary Education and Experience Center and will help with the funding needed to start the build-out on land that was just purchased for the new Sanctuary & Education Center. Tickets for WolfStock are $40 in advance and include a tasting cup and event T-shirt. For more information, visit


Heights Foundation Thanksgiving Outreach Volunteers

The Heights Foundation seeks donations, volunteers for Thanksgiving Outreach

The Heights Foundation/The Heights Center is seeking organizations and individuals to participate in the Bountiful Blessings Thanksgiving Outreach. Since 1999, the program has provided the ingredients so families in the Harlem Heights neighborhood can make a traditional Thanksgiving meal in their own homes to share with their families. The greatest need is for donated turkeys and rice or monetary donations to purchase those items. Additional food items needed include canned yams, boxed stuffing, boxed potatoes, canned vegetables and gravy, cranberry sauce, and cake mix. Donations can be dropped off Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. until Nov. 20. The outreach event will be held on Nov. 23. Volunteers are needed on Nov. 22-23. Contact Melissa Barlow at (239) 482-7706 or to sign up for a time slot or more information on donations. Monetary donations can be made at at


Grace Place for Children and Families receives $50,000 grant

Grace Place for Children and Families received a $50,000 grant from the United Way of Collier County to support its Bright Beginnings Program. Grace Place provides pathways out of poverty by educating children and families in Golden Gate. Grace Place’s innovative and multigenerational Bright Beginnings program, a Grace Place Family Literacy Model, combines parenting education and literacy training for adults with high-quality early childhood education for preschool students, and opportunities for parents and children to practice learning together. For more information, visit


Youth Haven Inc. receives $17,000 from HFTP

Youth Haven Inc. has received a $17,000 donation from the Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) – Florida Gulf Coast Chapter. During HFTP’s board installation Oct. 10, a check was presented to Laura Lafakis, Youth Haven’s development manager. HFTP raised the funds during the 17th annual Charity Golf Tournament held on June 8 at Stonebridge Country Club in Naples. HFTP’s goal was to raise $30,000 to divide between Youth Haven and Naples Therapeutic Riding Center. HFTP’s surpassed their goal by raising a record-breaking $34,400.  The funds received will benefit Youth Haven’s programs and services which support children and teens that have been abused or abandoned or are homeless.

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