Fast Track

By Beau Denton February 29, 2012

Left to Right: Mark Grigoli, Linda Formella, Brad Lindberg, Brad Baker

Positions Taken

F. Gant McCloud, attorney, law firm of Kirk-Pinkerton.

Jan Stanek, general manager, Comfort Suites University Park/Sarasota and Hampton Inn & Suites, Sarasota/University Park, both owned by Buffalo Lodging Associates.

Jose Silva, loan officer, Blue Skye Lending.

Rick Marzetta, vice president of client relations, Zirkelbach Construction.

Randolph “Randy” Smith, attorney, law firm of Najmy Thompson.

John Annis, vice president of community investment, Community Foundation of Sarasota County.

Leisa Smith, vice president of operations, Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota County.

Mary Lou Bale, director of development, State College of Florida Venice campus.

Laura E. Adcock, promoted to associate, WBRC Architects-Engineers.

Maurie West, chief financial officer, Cazley Financing Solutions.

Kevin Henault, HVAC manager, 1st Choice Service Experts.

Mark Grigoli, director of sales and marketing, John Cannon Homes.

Michelle Cherp, senior accountant, Kerkering, Barberio & Co.

Steve Dirks, director of membership and marketing, The Oaks Club.

Amy E. Vleck, lifestyle director, The Esplanade, a Taylor Morrison active lifestyle community.

Patrick Bruenning, promoted to vice president of sales and marketing; Gary Kolb, promoted to off-premise sales manager; Chad Fraser, bulk delivery sales director, Manatee County; and Jerry Staff, assistant warehouse manager and inventory specialist, Gold Coast Eagle Distributing.



Valerie Powell-Stafford of Doctors Hospital of Sarasota has been appointed to the Council of Regents of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Kerkering, Barberio & Co. has been accepted as a member of the Construction Industry CPAs/Consultants Association.

The Holiday Inn/Sarasota-Lakewood Ranch was one of only 116 hotels in the 4,400-hotel InterContinental Hotels Group to receive its 2011 Torchbearer Award for excellence.

Ann Harman of Shinn and Company and Patricia E. Staebler of Staebler Appraising and Consulting have joined the board of directors of Manatee County Habitat for Humanity.

Deborah Shuck has been elected president of the Women Owners of Florida networking group.

Pines of Sarasota announces these new board of trustees officers: Michael R. Pender Jr., chair; Sean McHale, secretary; and Shawn Byrd, treasurer.

Mary Masto of Keller Williams was named 2011 Realtor Member of the Year by the Women’s Council of Realtors Sarasota chapter; Linda Formella of Keller Williams was named 2011 Realtor of the Year by the Manatee Association of Realtors; Joe R. Hembree of Hembree & Associates was named 2011 Realtor of the Year by the Sarasota Association of Realtors; and Brad Lindberg of Sperry Van Ness Commercial Advisory Group was named 2011 Commercial Realtor of the Year by the Sarasota Association of Realtors Commercial Investment Division.

Girls Inc. announces the following awards: Flori Roberts and Pam Truitt, the “She Knows Where She’s Going” Award; and Susan Jones, the Donna Brace Ogilvie Visionary Award.

Star2Star Communications received a 2011 Unified Communications Excellence Award from TMC global marketing company.

State College of Florida won the 2011 Campus Sustainability Award from the Association of Florida Colleges, and its public affairs and marketing department won six awards in the association’s 2011 Communications and Marketing Commission competition.

Zagat members have named MoZaic restaurant the most liked restaurant in Florida’s Gulf Coast, based on member reviews of 4,789 restaurants.

J. Ronald Skipper and Richard R. Gans of the law firm of Fergeson, Skipper, Shaw, Keyser, Baron & Tirabassi are included in the 2012 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

Brad Baker and Steven L. Snyder have been appointed by Gov. Rick Scott to the board of trustees of New College of Florida.

Publix Super Markets Charities has donated $30,000 to Habitat for Humanity Sarasota for the construction of a single-family Habitat home.

Edward Stroop has been named a 2012 master roofing contractor to the Conklin Company.


Moving and Opening

The Sarasota Association of Realtors has opened the SAR School of Real Estate at 3590 S. Tuttle Ave. in Sarasota.

The Penny Hill Group residential mortgage lender has joined Insignia Bank.

Revival Antiques and Design has opened at 4141 S. Tamiami Trail in Sarasota.

Gecko’s Grill & Pub has opened a private-events dining room at its Palmer Ranch location, 5585 Palmer Crossing Circle in Sarasota.

Allison and Jason Levy are the new owners of We Fix Computers at 8519 E. S.R. 70 in Lakewood Ranch.

Half Shell Oyster House has opened at Main Street and Links Avenue in downtown Sarasota.

Chef Darwin Santa Maria has opened Darwin’s on 4th restaurant at 1525 Fourth St. in downtown Sarasota.

Be Pothole Free, a seamless pothole repair system, has opened its first nationwide office in Sarasota-Manatee.

Stephanie and Rick Lambert have opened Joyland Feed Company adjacent to their Joyland Country Music Nightclub at 5506 14th St. W. in Bradenton.

CJ’s Cellphones has opened at 2107 Cortez Road W. in Bradenton.


“My goal is to educate businesses on the power of focus groups and how to utilize them in decision-making.” -Stephanie Kempton, Focus SarasotaStephanie Kempton

Focus Sarasota

Stephanie Kempton is offering business owners and marketing managers a look into the mindsets of the public via Focus Sarasota, her new focus group facility at 1900 Main St. Kempton, who holds professional researcher certification from the Marketing Research Association, will develop the discussion guides, recruit respondents and provide analysis and reporting. Businesses with existing researcher relationships can also rent the space. Unlike the traditional one-way mirror setup, Kempton records each group and streams it in real time on the Internet as clients observe in a separate office. Local manufacturers, realtors and nonprofits have shown interest since the facility opened in late 2011. National political and real estate companies that “want to tap into the minds and hearts of our affluent seniors” are also calling, she says. To that end, she’s in discussion with the Sarasota-based Institute for the Ages. —Ilene Denton


Volume 9/Number 3, MARCH 2012, Biz(941) (ISSN 1936-7538) is published monthly, 12 times a year, by Gulfshore Media, LLC, 330 S. Pineapple Ave., Suite 205, Sarasota, FL 34236.

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