• June 2019 Business Briefs / Member News Part 2

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    June 19, 2019
    Support Food For Thought Outreach This Summer
    Did you know that 110 meals are missed on average over summer break? Food For Thought Outreach distributes 6,600 food items to 600 students over the summer. $10K will feed at least 600 families for three months over the summer. Would you consider becoming a seasonal sponsor to help support children in need in your community while they are out of school and removed from the free and or reduced meals they depend on? If you are interested in becoming a seasonal sponsor and have more questions, please email support@fftfl.org.
    CFO Jimmy Patronis Announces Scam Tracker Partnership with Better Business Bureau 
    As part of his Fraud Free Florida initiative, CFO Jimmy Patronis recently announced a new partnership with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to track and expose scams in Florida. The BBB’s online Scam Tracker tool will now be integrated into CFO Patronis’ website to help keep Floridians informed of growing trends and emerging scams in their area. More than 7,500 scams have been reported to the BBB Scam Tracker in the state of Florida since it launched in February 2015. Locally, in the 14 counties of the Florida Panhandle covered by your Better Business Bureau, there have been more than 700. 
    Tea Fore Her Raises More Than $5,000 Breast Cancer Patients in Northwest Florida 
    The 5th Annual Tea Fore Her, held in April at The Vue on 30A, raised more than $5,000 to help breast cancer patients in Northwest Florida. This would not have been possible without the generous support from sponsors and donors. Save the date for the 7th Annual Golf Outing on Sept. 27, 2019, at the Santa Rosa Golf & Beach Club. For more information on how to sponsor the golf outing, visit www.foreher.org or contact info@thehivecreativeconsulting.com
    BENETEAU American Appoints Emerald Coast Marine Group For Exclusive Gulf Coast Powerboat Representation
    BENETEAU America has appointed Emerald Coast Marine Group as its newest powerboat dealership to represent the Gran Turismo, Monte Carlo, Swift Trawler, Antares, Flyer and Barracuda product lines exclusively in the Northwest Gulf Coast from Mississippi to Port St. Joe, Florida, beginning model year 2020. New product is expected to arrive at the dealership in July. According to Emerald Coast Marine Group President Shawn Talpey, the choice to bring BENETEAU aboard and to launch the brand in the region is part of the dealership’s long-term sales and growth strategy.
    “BENETEAU is a recognized leader and product innovator in the boating industry and the largest boat manufacturer in the world,” said Talpey. “Its history of product quality and functional design coupled with the company’s customer-centric focus aligns directly with our goals and culture. We believe their new generation of power cruisers and outboards are ideally suited to the discerning market we represent and will find favor and demand among coastal boaters.”
    Destin Water Users Wins 2019 Florida Ops Challenge at Regional Conference
    Destin Water UsersDestin Water Users, Inc., (DWU) recently attended the 2019 Florida Water Resources Conference where its team placed first in the 2019 Florida Regional Ops Challenge. Known as the “Olympics of the Wastewater Industry,” the Ops Challenge follows teams of four as they compete in a series of events, including process control, laboratory, maintenance, collections, and safety in an effort to secure a spot at the national competition held at the Water Environment Federation’s 92nd Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC). The five events are representative of the skillset an operator should have. 
    Participating teams were asked to label themselves with a creative team name for the conference, in which DWU competed under the name “Positive Influents” against other company teams from St. Petersburg, Orange County, Tallahassee, Jacksonville and Polk County. Lead by Logan Law, DWU wastewater operations superintendent, the team placed first in both the process control and laboratory events. It then took first place overall in this year’s Ops Challenge, automatically entering the team to compete in this year’s national competition.
    Northwest Florida State College Voted Finest Local Higher Education Provider on the Emerald Coast 
    Northwest Florida State College won first place as the Finest Local Higher Education Provider on the Emerald Coast on May 2. The Northwest Florida Daily News hosts a voting platform for the public and received 170,000 votes cast in more than 160 categories that recognized the “Finest” businesses serving residents and visitors along the Panhandle.
    “Northwest Florida State College is proud to be recognized as the Finest Local Higher Education Provider on the Emerald Coast,” said Dr. Devin Stephenson, president. “The College has made significant accomplishments to create clear, unobstructed pathways toward student success. I’d like to thank the community for recognizing the efforts we are making to improve the quality of place and the quality of life in northwest Florida.”
    M.O.R.E. Gives to Children in Crisis
    Children In CrisisSeen here, Joe Capers (left) representing the Men Of Resurrection Catholic Church (M.O.R.E.) showed great support to the at-risk children living at Children In Crisis (CIC) by presenting a donation for $1,100 to CIC President and CEO Ken Hair. The funding was made possible through M.O.R.E.’s annual “Spring Fling” event. The donation will help give a home to about 130 children this year.

    Twin Cities Hospital Announces HCA Award of Distinction Winners
    Twin Cities HospitalTwin Cities HospitalTwin Cities HospitalTwin Cities Hospital recently announced the recipients of its 2018 HCA Awards of Distinction. The Frist Humanitarian Awards recognize one physician, one employee and one volunteer who each demonstrate extraordinary concern for the welfare and happiness of patients and their community. 
    Thomas Fox, MD (left) - 2018 Physician Frist Humanitarian Award Winner 
    Fox works among us every day, but few know of his dedication to giving back to our community and those less fortunate in other countries. He volunteers on a regular basis at the Crossroads Medical Clinic in Valparaiso and the Hope Medical Clinic in Destin, providing much needed services to those in need. Fox volunteers as the team doctor at Northwest Florida State College providing year round care for the athletes. This year, Fox volunteered for a mission trip to North India to provide his medical services to the people there. Unfortunately, upon arrival the trip was canceled due to monsoons and flooding.
    Sharon Wise, RN (center) - 2018 Employee Frist Humanitarian Award Winner
    Wise lives the HCA mission “Above all else we are committed to the care and improvement of human life,” not only professionally, but personally as well. Under her guidance and collaboration with physicians, nurses, and ancillary staff, both programs soon reflected the engagement of improving care and human life. She participates and coordinates many fundraising events for scholarships, drug awareness programs, youth camps, veteran’s programs, and the Americanism essay program, as well as a member of the Boards of Directors for Florida One/Emerald Coast Healthcare Coalition and the State Medical Assistance Response Team. She also coordinated efforts in setting up the facility, arranged meals through donations from restaurants in the community, and distributed donated items as needed. Wise is a true humanitarian who gives selflessly of her time and talents. Not only was she awarded the Twin Cities Hospital Employee Award, she also was selected as the HCA North Florida Division Employee Frist Award Winner. 
    Carolyn Van Pelt (right) - 2018 Volunteer Frist Humanitarian Award Winner
    Carolyn Van Pelt has served in the Twin Cities Hospital Auxiliary for more than 33 years and has accrued almost 24,000 hours! (Imagine if TCH had to pay her for all those selfless hours.) Besides representing the Auxiliary at the Niceville Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce, she also teaches a Sunday School Class for special needs children and is active in the Retired Officers Wives Club at Eglin AFB. Van Pelt was a true friend and supporter of one of our staff members’ adult child, Katie. Katie had Downs Syndrome,but Van Pelt volunteered to step up and went above and beyond looking after her as she began to volunteer in Auxiliary.
    Alzheimer’s Foundation of America Awards Funding to Air Force Enlisted Village
    The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA) has awarded grant funding to Air Force Enlisted Village – Hawthorn House to help fund its virtual reality cognitive therapy program for seniors to help provide a positive experience for them as they experience the world beyond their front porch. This $5,000 grant will help Air Force Enlisted Village use virtual reality as cognitive therapy to provide a positive therapy experience, allowing seniors to continue to experience the world around them. The program will help stimulate social interactions that lead to increased engagement in their environment. Being away from family and friends, this virtual reality experience will enable seniors to experience familiar people and places. The program will be incorporated into the weekly Thursday morning Coffee Talk group activity and the Walkers Club group on Fridays. Residents will be able to take a stroll down memory lane by revisiting their home, favorite park, or wedding site. It will also be used with families and in one-on-one resident interactions, with those specifically in memory care.
    Stubbs Orthodonics Makes Donation to ECCAC
    Stubbs Orthodontics - Emerald Coast Children's Advocacy CenterDrs. Zack and Casi Stubbs and the team at Stubbs Orthodontics, with locations in Niceville and Miramar Beach, have been a long-time friend of the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center (ECCAC) making numerous donations. They recently presented ECCAC with an $859 donation. ECCAC’s mission is to prevent child abuse and neglect, protect children in Okaloosa and Walton counties and restore the lives and futures of these impacted children. Their child-friendly centers house a multidisciplinary team of child protection personnel, prosecutors, law enforcement, DCF, therapists, ECCAC staff and volunteers. 
    Fort Walton Beach Medical Center Honors Five Daisy Award Winners
    Fort Walton Beach Medical CenterFort Walton Beach Medical CenterFort Walton Beach Medical Center
    Fort Walton Beach Medical CenterFort Walton Beach Medical Center
    Five Fort Walton Beach Medical Center nurses have been named local winners of the DAISY Award for providing extraordinary nursing care. The nurses honored are Vanessa Romero-Cano (top left), Anastasiya Powell (top center), Kathy Nellie (top right), Barb McDaniel (bottom left), and Kat Phillips (bottom right). Fort Walton Beach Medical Center has participates in the DAISY Award program for many years. Nurses are nominated by patients and fellow employees and are selected based on their clinical expertise and demonstration of extraordinary compassionate care. Romero-Cano and Powell both work in the CVICU; Nellis works in Behavioral Services; and McDaniel and Phillips both work in our Med Surg unit. 
    Summer Reading Programs are Your Ticket to a Universe of Stories at the Destin Library 
    The Destin Library 2019 Summer Reading Program blasted off on June 1. Visit the library and pick up your reading logs to chart your progress through A Universe of Stories. The deadline for turning in completed logs is Aug. 3. The reading rewards program for 2019 has expanded to encompass children from pre-reading level to high school, and we have not one but TWO levels of reading log prizes. Each completed reading log and summer reading program activity attended will also earn participants an entry into our Grand Prize drawing to be held on Aug. 5, sponsored by The Destin Rotary Club. Younger explorers can join us at the library for Space Cadet Story Hour every Thursday at 9:30 a.m. from June 6 through Aug. 1. This program is geared toward children ages 5 and under and registration is not required. 
    West Florida Regional Planning Council Becomes Emerald Coast Regional Council
    To better align and represent the true personality of the region and more closely identify with the world renowned beauty of the Emerald Coast, the West Florida Regional Planning Council (WFRPC) has changed its name to Emerald Coast Regional Council (ECRC). The ECRC staffs Florida-Alabama, Okaloosa-Walton, and Bay County Transportation Planning Organizations, as well as the Bay, Gulf, Holmes, and Washington Regional Transportation Partnership and the Northwest Florida Regional Transportation Planning Organization. The mission of the Emerald Coast Regional Council is to preserve and enhance the quality of life in northwest Florida by providing professional technical assistance, planning, coordinating, and advisory services to local governments, state and federal agencies, and the public. By building relationships with municipalities and community members, and by coordinating collaborative efforts among communities and counties, Emerald Coast Regional Council is fulfilling this mission through the many, robust programs and services they facilitate throughout the region. 
    Northwest Florida State College Named Safest Campus in Florida
    Northwest Florida State College was recently named safest college campus in the state of Florida by YourLocalSecurity.com. The rankings considered public and private colleges across the country with 5,000 students or more. Using data from the U.S. Department of Education’s Campus Safety and Security analysis and the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report, the study determined the safest college campus in each state. Four main factors were used to narrow down campus safety amongst the schools that met the required criteria: hate crimes per enrolled students, violence against women per enrolled females, property crime per population and violent crime per population. Northwest Florida State College has a mass notification system and many programs to keep the campus safe, such as trainings for basic life support, stop the bleed and responses to active shooting situations to name a few.
    Keller Williams Team Gives Red Day to CIC Kids
    Members of Keller Williams (KW) Realty Emerald Coast donated their time, talents and hard work during the recent KW Red Day at the Children In Crisis (CIC) Neighborhood. There were more than 40 volunteers from Keller Williams’ offices around the panhandle. The volunteers completed normal grounds maintenance for the entire neighborhood, added a layer of pine straw in all the landscape beds, refurbished the Kids’ Snack Shack and topped it off with a food drive donation. This is the third year of KW Red Day at CIC.
    The Collegiate High School at NWF State College Named GreatSchools College Success Awardee
    The Collegiate High School at Northwest Florida State College (CHS) was named a College Success Awardee for the second consecutive year by GreatSchools. GreatSchools is the leading national nonprofit empowering parents to unlock educational opportunities for their child. The College Success Award recognizes public high schools and their preparation of students for college and beyond. CHS was one of only 1,722 public high schools, or about 20 percent, of total eligible schools across 25 states that won this year's award. The College Success Award-winning high schools stand out based on school-level college preparation and postsecondary data collected and shared by state education departments.
    Dixielectricar to Receive Scenic Walton Design Excellence Award
    DixielectricarScenic Walton has announced Dixielectricar in Santa Rosa Beach as the winner of its Design Excellence Award for this quarter. Owners Roy Gorman, Colin Gorman, and Blair Gorman received the award at a special presentation ceremony in May. Dixielectricar has been providing the Emerald Coast with quality sales, service and repairs on E-Z-Go Golf Carts since 1972. In September 2017, this family-run business opened a new, larger facility offering more golf cart variety, additional service technicians and the option of onsite storage. 
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