Gulfshore Business Daily: September 5

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The Collier Building Industry Association and Lee Building Industry Association will host the eighth annual home building industry event, “Market Trends,” on Oct. 30 at Miromar Design Center in Estero. This event is the region’s largest program of its kind and brings together prominent building industry professionals and businesses to support the Building Industry Associations of Lee and Collier counties. Randy Thibaut, President and CEO of Land Solutions Inc., will be presenting facts and insight that directly impact the industry. Early registration is encouraged as seats are limited. Tickets are $35 for members and $55 for non-members and can be purchased by visiting


Tickets are on sale for the Horizon Council and Lee County Economic Development Industry Appreciation Awards, beginning with networking at 10:30 a.m. on Oct. 4, at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point in Estero. The lunch and awards program will begin at around 11:30 a.m. Awards will be given in the following categories: The Business Citizenship Awards (finalists: Crown Roofing, Cushman & Wakefield Commercial Property, Edison National Bank, Lee County Electric Cooperative, Pavese Law Firm and Pushing the Envelope); The Nonprofit of the Year Award (finalists: Alliance for the Arts, Child Care of SW Florida, F.I.S.H of Sanibel-Captiva, Heights Foundation, SWFL Crime Stoppers and Wildcat Run Charitable Foundation); The Diversity in Business Award (finalist: Lee Health); The Startup of the Year Award (finalists: Minaya Learning Global Solutions, Oasis Senior Advisors and Testimonial Tree); and The Business of the Year Award (finalists: FineMark National Bank and Trust, Shell Point Retirement Community and Sunshine Ace Hardware). Tickets are $50 per person. To purchase tickets, go to and search Industry Appreciation Awards.  


The Lee Board of County Commissioners approved a $75,000 grant application as part of the North Fort Myers Revitalization Incentives program for a new façade project for Merchants Crossing shopping center in North Fort Myers. The owner of the center, RD Management LLC, plans a $300,000 capital investment in the façade at the center, 15201 North Cleveland Ave., to accent new entry elements; create visual interest in the tenant spaces; enhance and creating visual interest in the overall center by incorporating the coastal "Key West" exterior color palette; and adjust parapets to create a more varied roofline and better proportions for the building. The work on the façade is expected to begin before the end of 2018. The Lee Board of County Commissioners approved the North Fort Myers Revitalization Incentives program earlier this year. This is the first submitted grant application. The program is intended to encourage private sector investment in sites and buildings that will encourage business retention, attraction, and expansion. The work must be completed and verified by the county before the funds are awarded. For more information about the incentive program, contact interim Economic Development Director Pamela Johnson at (239) 338-3161.


Pam Garvey has joined WGCU Public Media as its new associate general manager for development and community relations. She began in her new post on Aug. 27. Most recently, Garvey served as vice president for development for the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, a position she held for three years. Prior to that, she spent 18 years in various capacities at the Medical College of Wisconsin, rising to the position of associate vice president. Garvey also served as the cultural affairs director for the city of Milwaukee, executive director of Wisconsin Citizens for the Arts and as a consultant and advisor to several arts organizations. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in political science and a master of arts degree from the graduate school of business at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


Florida SouthWestern State College President Jeff Allbritten will present “Critical Thinking in Higher Education” during FSW’s Critical Thinking Lecture Series at 11 a.m. on Sept. 24 at the FSW Thomas Edison Campus in Fort Myers. Additionally, the presentation can be viewed digitally at the FSW Charlotte Campus, Building O, Room 116; the FSW Collier Campus, Building G, Room 109; and the FSW Hendry/Glades Curtis Center, Building A, Room 114. The FSW Critical Thinking Lecture Series features college and community leaders who discuss how they use critical thinking skills in their profession or focus on critical topics from their area of career or academic interest. The series is free and open to the public. Presentations take place weekly, and the fall series runs September through November. For more information on the FSW Critical Thinking Lecture Series, contact Whitney Rhyne at (239) 433-6943 or


The Lee Board of County Commissioners approved an agreement with Hodges University and Lee County Emergency Medical Services to offer field internship experience for students pursuing paramedic training. The new program would begin this fall. A similar agreement exists with Florida SouthWestern State College and the Lee County School District, on behalf of the Southwest Florida Public Service Academy. The completion of a field internship is a requirement for certification by the Florida Department of Health. The field provides opportunities for students to observe and perform appropriate Emergency Medical Technician and/or Paramedic skills under supervision. The agreement with Hodges University also anticipates that Lee County EMS employees will be entering into department-sponsored paramedic training this fall at the university.

Charitable Notes

Collier-Lee Honor Flight invites public to welcome home veterans

 Collier-Lee Honor Flight invites the public to attend its welcome home celebration from 9-10:30 p.m. on Sept. 29 at Southwest Florida International Airport. More than 2,000 family members, local service members, law enforcement and well-wishers are expected at the welcome home ceremony for the veterans on the American Airlines flight returning from Washington, D.C. Seventy-five senior veterans will be returning from a one-day trip to Washington D.C., where they will visit the WWII Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, and the Vietnam Memorial. The trip will include laying a wreath at Arlington National Cemetery. Each veteran will be accompanied by a guardian. A volunteer has paid for their trip and ensures that every veteran has a safe, memorable, and rewarding experience. Twelve Gold Star family members, families that have lost a loved one in battle, will accompany the veterans as guardians for the day. Two-hundred-and-twenty-five veterans will participate in a total of three Collier-Lee honor Flights in 2018. A single flight can cost more than $80,000. Support for these trips is provided by donors and volunteers and is at no cost to the veterans. The next Collier-Lee Honor Flight will take place on Oct. 20. Veterans can apply for an Honor Flight by visiting or calling (239) 777-9295.

Golf tournament supports The Heights Foundation’s programs for kids

The Heights Foundation’s third annual benefit golf tournament will take place with 11:30 a.m. registration on Sept. 28 at Heritage Palms Golf and Country Club in Fort Myers. There will be a shotgun start at 1 p.m. and dinner, auction and awards at 6 p.m. The proceeds of the event support The Heights Center’s programs that work to build strong, self-sufficient families in the Harlem Heights neighborhood of Fort Myers. Sponsors include Owen Ames Kimball, Five County Insurance and Jul Andre Fragrances. Additional sponsorships that include golf packages and recognition are available. Sponsorship deadline is Sept. 14. Tournament Registration is now available.  A foursome is $600 and two golfers are $300.  Golfer registration deadline is Sept. 21. For more information, visit or contact Jim Sanger at (239) 482-7706 or

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