Gulfshore Business Daily: September 25

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Dana Young

Video courtesy of WINK News


Collier County commissioners on Tuesday approved $12 million of CARES Act funding for community health and services. The money will go to hospitals, emergency health services, elder care and nonprofits, ensuring more people will get the help they need and employees will get to keep their jobs at locations such as the St. Matthew’s House Thrift Store and Naples Senior Center. Both nonprofits survived with help from the Collier County CARES Act funds, and they learned this week they will get more relief after commissioners voted to reallocate around $12 million. That money comes from areas where the county over projected what they’d need, like for PPE and childcare assistance, WINK News reports.


Lee Health’s Veteran Visitation Program has been awarded the Partnership Award from the American Red Cross Florida Gulf Coast to Heartland Chapter. The health system will be presented with the award during a virtual award ceremony on Oct. 8. Set to celebrate its one-year anniversary, the program is a partnership between Lee Health and the American Red Cross. The program is located at Cape Coral Hospital and is the first-in-the-nation veteran visitation program at a civilian hospital. The program helps veterans seeking services at the hospital by providing information on programs and resources available to them and to also provide a comforting word. The program was modeled after the Red Cross’ efforts at VA and military hospitals. For more information about the Veterans Visitation Program, contact

Dana Young


The Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce hosted a virtual meeting on Sept. 17 featuring Dana Young, president and chief executive officer of Visit Florida, as guest speaker. She spoke about the current state of tourism from the perspective of Florida’s official destination marketing organization. In her Florida Tourism Rebound & Recovery presentation, Young talked about the state’s Economic & Demographic Research (EDR) studies for assessing Florida’s readiness to again promote tourism. Young outlined campaigns to target in-state and domestic travelers, including co-op opportunities through ads, social media, billboards, and travel banners. The Sanibel-Captiva chamber plans on participating in co-op ads in October and November as it gears up for season, says John Lai, chamber president and chief executive officer. The chamber’s next virtual meeting, a Ballot Briefing Power Hour, takes place at 8:30 a.m. on Oct. 2 with Michael Nachef, system director of government relations for Lee Health. He will speak about informed voting on the six amendments on the upcoming ballot. For information, contact Ashley Pignato at


Naples Pride, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, announces the official opening of The Naples Pride Center, from noon to 4 pm. on Oct. 3 at 2248 Airport-Pulling Rd. S. The ribbon cutting is at 12:15 p.m. The goal of the Naples Pride Center is to provide a safe, supportive space for the LGBTQ community to gather, unite and create change. The center will provide resources and weekly/monthly support groups for LGBTQ youth, adults, transgender, veterans as well as bereavement support. The Naples Pride Center will also provide meeting space to other LGBTQ organizations and groups. In addition, the organization is introducing its business alliance partnership with local LGBTQ and LGBTQ-friendly businesses and organizations to provide the community with a directory of businesses and other resources that embrace diversity and inclusivity. For more information, visit or email RSVP to the ribbon-cutting here.


Gamma Tech Services, a technology design firm specializing in smart home automation integration, security and managed IT services, is on the move. Owner Bradd Konert and his team will be moving from Trade Center Way in Naples to its new headquarters at 3106 Horseshoe Drive S., formally occupied by Coastal Engineering. Gamma Tech Services has been in business for 16 years. For more information, visit

Gulfstream Homes Marco Island model


Gulfstream Homes, a Southwest Florida custom home builder, has expanded its services onto Marco Island and is officially opening its model home to the public this month. The home builder has been servicing the area for over 20 years and specializes in on-your-lot building, new custom homes, and home renovations. Located at 201 S. Heathwood Dr. on Marco Island, the Gulfstream Homes model home features three bedrooms, three bathrooms and 3,041 square feet of living space. For more information, visit


Pushing the Envelope Inc. (PTE) is seeking drop-off locations for its 10th Annual CAN IT! Campaign food drive, slated to launch on Oct. 15. Designed to help area residents in need, PTE coordinates the food drive through Community Cooperative (CCI) and is trying to collect 2,000 non-perishable food items this year. The more businesses that participate as drop-off locations, the more food can be collected and ultimately donated. In order to serve as a drop-off location, businesses are asked to allow the public to drop off non-perishable food items at their location between Oct. 15 through Nov. 15, during their regular business hours. As a CAN IT! 2020 partner, PTE will recognize your business as a supporter and drop-off location in all publicity, social media posts, and on the website. There is no cost associated with participating in the campaign as a drop-off location. Interested businesses can call (239) 221- 2858 or email For more information, click here.


The Naples Children & Education Foundation (NCEF), founders of the Naples Winter Wine Festival, is launching a new dining series, “Purposeful Pairings,” to support local restaurants and help the organization fulfill its mission to support underprivileged and at-risk children in Collier County. The inaugural virtual dinner and wine tasting is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Oct. 25 with hosts Sea Salt and The Wine Store. The 90-minute presentation will bring together gourmet dining, fine wine and a virtual cooking demonstration. Menu ingredients and the wines will be available for pick up at Sea Salt the day before the event from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Participation in “Purposeful Pairings” is limited and reservations are required. The cost is $350 per couple and participants must be 21 years or older and reside in the local area. Media partners for the “Purposeful Pairings” dining series include WINK-TV and Gulfshore Life. For additional information or to make reservations, e-mail Lisa Juliano at or call (239) 514-2239 by Oct. 19.



Valerie’s House, WGCU partner in public discussion on grief

Valerie’s House, a nonprofit organization in Southwest Florida with the sole focus of helping children grieve, and WGCU Public Media invite the public to take part in a community initiative to create a more grief-aware society. WGCU PBS will air the award-winning documentary, Speaking Grief, at 11 a.m. this Sunday. It can also be watched free online at Listen in on WGCU FM at 1 p.m. on Sept. 29 as Gulf Coast Life producer Mike Kiniry, Valerie’s House Founder & CEO Angela Melvin, and others tee up for a virtual Zoom discussion later that day at 6 p.m. Speaking Grief explores the transformative experience of losing a family member in a death- and grief-avoidant society. This national public media initiative includes a one-hour television documentary, campaign, and numerous community engagement events, all aimed at starting a national conversation about grief. To RSVP for the Sept. 29 Virtual Live Discussion, click here

Erin Broussard

Hope Clubhouse welcomes Broussard as CEO

Hope Clubhouse has welcomed Erin Broussard as its new chief executive officer. Broussard will spearhead the nonprofit’s mission of providing a community of support for adults living with a mental illness and opportunities for paid employment and access to education, housing, and wellness. Broussard brings a long history of experience with mental health and nonprofit leadership and is a trained mental health clinician as well as a military veteran. She holds an associate degree from the Community College of the Air Force, a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado, and a Master of Science degree in clinical psychology from Capella University.

Ryan Harlacher, M.D.

Physicians’ Primary Care of Southwest Florida hires family medicine physician

Dr. Ryan Harlacher has joined Physicians’ Primary Care of Southwest Florida as a family medicine physician. Harlacher earned his medical degree from AUA College of Medicine in Antigua. He served his residency in family medicine at Louisiana State University in Shreveport. Harlacher is board-certified in family medicine and is a member of the American College of Physicians and the American Academy of Family Physicians. He will see patients at the Fort Myers family medicine office of Physicians’ Primary Care at 7381 College Pkwy. For more information, visit

Emma Osborne

Boys & Girls Club of Collier County appoints new board member

Boys & Girls Club of Collier County has appointed Emma Osborne to its board of directors. Osborne is a lawyer with Bond, Schoeneck & King PLLC with a background in trust and estate planning. Osborne will also serve as a member of the planned giving committee. Osborne is involved with several nonprofit organizations and associations since moving to Naples in 2015. In 2017, Osborne co-founded the Boys & Girls Club of Collier County’s NextGen philanthropy group, Friends Circle, creating opportunities for young professionals to engage with the club by promoting volunteer and fundraising opportunities. 

Charles Thomson

Seagate Development appoints Thomson as general counsel

Seagate Development Group LLC has hired Charles Thomson as general counsel. This comes as the development and construction company experiences exponential growth, particularly with its corporate headquarters portfolio. Thomson will provide the legal support component for the property management, residential, and commercial sectors of Seagate. A Florida Bar-licensed attorney, Thomson graduated from the University of Florida with a Master of Science in real estate and a Juris Doctor. As a graduate student, his team received the Capstone Trophy following a project centered around significant equity investments and property assets. During his academic career, Thomson was also awarded a Florida Conference Scholarship by the International Council of Shopping Centers — a global trade association representing retail real estate. Prior to joining Seagate, he spent nearly a decade with Coleman, Yovanovich & Koester, P.A. in Naples.

Marisa Cleveland

Cleveland joins Hodges University as a trustee

Hodges University has announced that Marisa Cleveland has joined as a trustee. She is the executive director for The Seymour Agency, which offers to aspire and established authors the representation and resources needed in the publishing industry. Additionally, she is an educator and bestselling author, has been featured at various book festivals and participated on panels and in workshops about diversity, civil discourse, communications, and the state of the book publishing industry. She earned her Doctor of Education in organizational leadership from Northeastern University, her Master of Arts in educational administration from George Mason University, her Master of Arts in English from National University, and Bachelor of Arts in speech communications from George Mason University. She is a 2015 Leadership Marco graduate.



Lee County participates in World’s Largest Beach Cleanup

Keep Lee County Beautiful is the local organizer of Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup (ICC). Taking place over the course of 35 years, this cleanup has removed nearly 315 million pounds of trash from beaches and waterways worldwide. It remains the largest, global volunteer effort to remove trash from our local shorelines. The Lee County 2020 ICC took place on a much smaller scale due to gathering restrictions amid concerns over coronavirus. Only select cleanup locations participated with a limited number of volunteers practicing social distancing and wearing face coverings.  A number of independent cleanups also took place across the county. For more information, visit


Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co. hosts annual free Community Shred Day 

Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co. P.A. (MNMW) will partner with Secure Shredding Inc. to host its fourth annual free Community Shred Day event from 9 a.m. until noon on Oct. 30. The Secure Shredding Inc. truck will be on-site at the Fort Myers MNMW location, 8961 Conference Drive. There will be a two-box maximum per person for shredding. MNMW encourages participants to consider a donation to the United Way of Lee, Hendry, Glades and Okeechobee Counties or the Cape Coral Animal Shelter when dropping off shred items. Donations for United Way can be in monetary form, canned or non-perishable goods, or new and gently used clothing. Donations for the Cape Coral Animal Shelter can be in monetary form or pet food/supplies. Cape Coral Animal Shelter also has a wish list on Amazon for donations. Representatives from both organizations will be on-site to receive the donations and answer questions.

Fort Myers financial advisor receives national recognition for philanthropy

Duane Chaney, a financial advisor at Raymond James in Fort Myers, received the Community Service Award at the national 14th Annual Invest in Others Awards. Chaney was honored in a video presentation and watch party Tuesday at Lee Health Foundation for founding Madisen’s Match, a tennis tournament benefitting Barbara’s Friends, the cancer fund for Golisano Children’s Hospital. Madisen’s Match has raised more than $1.3 million for Lee Health and Golisano Children’s Hospital since 2008. Because Chaney was selected for the award from three finalists, Barbara’s Friends will receive a $45,000 donation from the Invest in Others Charitable Foundation. Chaney presented an additional check Wednesday at Golisano Children’s Hospital for $40,622.56, which he raised this year from donors to Madisen’s Match, despite having to cancel the event due to the pandemic. Chaney also delivered a second “Madisen’s Match Tesla,” a child-size version of the Tesla Model S wrapped in the Madisen’s Match colors and logo purchased using funds from donors to Madisen’s Match. The mini electric vehicle will be used by children staying at the hospital.

WayFM Radio collects hygiene donations to support Youth Haven

WayFM Radio hosted a hygiene donation drive on Sept. 12 to support Youth Haven’s children and teens as part of their Passport to Hope campaign. The donation drive, held at First Baptist Church Naples, encouraged participants to stop, pop their trunk and drop their items. Over 560 hygiene items including hairbrushes, toothpaste, toothbrushes, shampoo, conditioner, and deodorant for children ages 6-19 were collected. For additional details on WayFM Radio’s Passport to Hope and to find out about their upcoming donations drives, click here.


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