Tyler Russell of Niceville High School Chosen as 8th Taylor Haugen Trophy Winner
On Thursday, Jan. 7, Niceville High School Student Tyler Russell was announced as this year’s Taylor Haugen
Trophy winner. Tyler is the 8th person to win this coveted award. High school seniors are nominated from their school, one nominee per school, in Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Walton counties. Nominees are considered based on the character traits of the trophy’s namesake, Taylor Haugen, who passed away on Aug 30, 2008, of abdominal injuries suffered during a football game. Those traits are Academics, Athletics, Community Service, Leadership, and Christian Faith. Additionally, each nominee must write an essay that speaks to their perseverance in keeping with Taylor’s motto of ‘Don’t Quit … Never Give Up.’ This year’s winner is the first trophy winner from Niceville High School, where Haugen was a student. Russell is pictured here with past trophy winners Charlie Shackelford, Mary Kate Myrick, and Collin Myrick.
SunQuest Cruises SOLARIS Wins 2016 Knot and WeddingWire Awards
announced that its client reviews have earned the SOLARIS yacht the Knot Best of Weddings Award for the 7th consecutive year and the 2016 WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Award. Both prestigious awards represent the highest-rated wedding professionals throughout the nation as reviewed by real couples, their families, and wedding guests. In 2016, only two percent of the 250,000 local wedding professionals listed on TheKnot.com received the distinguished Best of Weddings accolade. The WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Awards® 2016 recognizes the top five percent of wedding professionals in the WeddingWire Network who demonstrate excellence in quality, service, responsiveness, and professionalism.
White-Wilson Community Foundation Supports Shelter House
Community Foundation recently awarded Shelter House
a grant for $22,542 to expand the agency’s sexual violence services. Shelter House currently provides services including a 24/7 rape crisis hotline, peer counseling, and victim accompaniment during medical exams and law enforcement interviews. The White-Wilson Community Foundation grant enables Shelter House to create an on-site sexual assault forensic exam room at the agency’s program office in Fort Walton Beach. The funds will also be used to establish a certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) program in Okaloosa and Walton counties with plans to train and certify five local nurses in the first year. Seen here, Shelter House Executive Director Rosalyn Iovieno (left) accepts a check from White-Wilson Community Foundation board members, Dr. Janet Niemi Chubb and Dr. Jack Azzaretto.
Museum Hosts Traveling Exhibit "Rural Electrification"
In August 2015, Choctawhatchee Electric Cooperative marked 75 years of providing electricity to rural Walton and Okaloosa, as well as portions of Holmes and Santa Rosa counties. Through Jan. 22, 2016, you can view its special traveling exhibit at the Heritage Museum of Northwest Florida
. The display includes historic artifacts featuring household items used in the days before and after electrification.
Destin and South Walton REALTOR© Launches Cutting Edge Real Estate Website
Brett Bianca, a Miramar Beach-based Realtor with ResortQuest Real Estate
, announced the launch of his new website BrettSellsDestin.com
. This beautifully designed website offers a user-friendly interface and powerful real estate search engine for Destin and South Walton properties. It also contains useful information, tips, contact information, and tools, such as closing cost calculators, and offers resources for those unfamiliar with the area to learn more about each beach community.
Warren Averett Hires New Chief Marketing Officer
hired Todd Decker as chief marketing officer and head of business development. Decker comes to Warren Averett from Stifel, where he was chief marketing officer. Prior to Stifel, Decker spent nearly a decade holding leadership roles in banks, including Regions, BBVA Compass, and Bank of America. He began his marketing career at Johnson & Johnson, where he served as marketing director for several leading consumer brands. Decker graduated from Duke University, where he was a quarterback on the football team, and he earned an MBA from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.
Warren Averett Expands Daily Money Management Division to Gulf Coast
continues to strengthen its Gulf Coast presence by expanding the Daily Money Management Division to the Pensacola office. Warren Averett’s Daily Money Management services offer assistance with personal financial affairs and provide specialized needs to families of private wealth, high net worth individuals, executives, and retired executives. These services include record keeping and oversight assistance with safety of financial data. Dee Dee Ward will be leading the new Gulf Coast Daily Money Management Division. Ward joined the firm as a manager in 2015 and brings more than 25 years of banking experience to Warren Averett, primarily in private banking. She offers special expertise in family office services. Ward earned her Bachelor of Science degree at Troy University in Montgomery, Ala.
AMIKids Receives Grant from Impact 100
IMPACT 100 of Northwest Florida, Inc., recently announced AMI Kids Emerald Coast
as one of the three organizations set to receive $107,667 in grant money. With these awards, IMPACT 100 of Northwest Florida has now contributed a total of $921,000 to the nonprofits of Okaloosa and Walton counties for projects that benefit the community.
AMI Kids Emerald Coast will use the grant to implement its AMI Kids Careers program to offer quality vocational training, as well as teaching job readiness skills to students. The other two organizations receiving money include Grace Rides and Matrix Community Outreach Center, Inc.
Previous IMPACT 100 grant award recipients include:
2013 - Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge
($110,000) and Destin Harvest
2014 - Shelter House
($125,000) and The Arc of the Emerald Coast
Scentsy Buddies and Toys for CIC Children
Shauna Davis and Jennifer
Matney donated 50
Scentsy Buddies and toys to help the kids living at Children in Crisis (CIC) get ready for the holidays and the new year. Seen here, Ken Hair, CIC president and CEO, receives the donation from Davis and