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Business Briefs

May 26, 2017
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

FSBDC announces 2017 Distinguished Entrepreneur winners

The Florida Small Business Development Center at Florida Gulf Coast University announced the 2017 Distinguished Entrepreneur of Southwest Florida awards at its annual dinner on Wednesday, May 10.

The FSBDC awards are held annually to recognize three Southwest Florida small businesses for their innovation, advocacy and business growth. This year's Distinguished Entrepreneur of Southwest Florida is Dr. Anais Aurora Badia, owner of Florida Skin Centers. Guido A. Minaya, owner of Minaya Learning Global Solutions, was named Innovator of the Year. Advocate of the Year is Brian Rist, owner of Storm Smart. An additional honor, the William O. Webb award, was presented to A & E Auto Repair.

Badia, a board certified dermatologist and the only pediatric dermatologist in Lee County, opened Florida Skin Center in Fort Myers in 2001. She has since expanded her operations into Cape Coral and Lehigh Acres, with the community's public opinion polls naming her Cape Coral and Fort Myers dermatology centers "The Best" in 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Minaya has a background working directly for Fortune 500 companies and more than 25 years of corporate learning and development management expertise. His company, Minaya Learning Global Solutions, helps clients define a path forward to accomplish their business and workforce performance improvement goals.

Rist, the Storm Smart president, is actively involved with seven different non-profit associations and has engaged in numerous community initiatives over the company's history.

The FSBDC at FGCU offers one-on-one, confidential, no-cost consulting and low-cost workshops for businesses throughout Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades counties. The state designates the Florida SBDC Network as Florida's principal provider of business assistance. The FSBDC at FGCU is a member of the Florida SBDC Network, a statewide service funded in part through cooperative agreements with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida and other private and public partners, and is hosted by Florida Gulf Coast University and nationally accredited by the Association of SBDCs.

Reich earns CPBA Certification

Sarah Reich, human resources manager and consultant for Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co., P.A., has received a new designation as a certified professional behavioral analyst through Target Training Inter-national.

Using the TTI DISC behavioral assessment tool, Reich offers team-building workshops to enhance communication and reduce conflict in the workplace. Other TTI assessments are also available to examine candidates' probability of success in a given job by implementing comprehensive job benchmarking and analysis of candidates against the benchmark in the areas of behavior, motivators, and competencies.

Reich joined the MNMW team in 2016. In addition to the CPBA designation, Reich also has numerous other credentials including a master's degree in human resources, the senior professional in human resources certification and the certified Internet recruiter certification.

Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co. is a certified public accounting and consulting firm with offices in both Fort Myers and Naples. The firm offers a wide range of services including business consulting, human resources consulting, technology consulting and support, tax planning and preparation, litigation support, mediation, forensic accounting and elder services. For more, call 239-433-5554 or visit

Horizon Council/Lee County Economic Development now

accepting applications for 2017

Industry Appreciation Awards

To salute excellence in Lee County's business community, the Horizon Council and Lee County Economic Development Office are seeking applications for the annual Industry Appreciation Awards. Applications for the 2017 Industry Appreciation Awards are available online at The deadline for submissions is Friday, June 30.

Honorees will be recognized during the Industry Appreciation luncheon on Thursday, Oct. 12, at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa, 5001 Coconut Road. Networking begins at 10:30 a.m. and the program is scheduled for 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Horizon Council will honor businesses in five categories:

n Business Citizenship Awarded to a company whose financial, volunteer and active involvement in community organizations and programs create a better quality of business and civic life in Lee County. Awards will be given in two categories: Large (51-plus employees), Small (1-50 employees).

n Nonprofit of the Year - Awarded to a Section 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that has recognized a business or civic need within our community and through community responsibility, innovation, growth, sound business practices and community partnerships serves our community with vision and integrity. Awards will be given in two categories: Large (Revenue more than $1 million), Small (Revenue less than $1 million).

n Diversity in Business Awarded to a business that has implemented programs in the workplace to create and promote diversity by employing initiatives within the organization and the community. Diversity is generally defined as acknowledging, understanding, accepting, valuing and celebrating differences among people with respect to age, class, ethnicity, gender, physical and mental ability, race, sexual orientation, spiritual practice and public assistance status.

n Start-up of the Year - Awarded to a company founded in Lee County in the last three to five years with demonstrated continued growth, both financially and in staffing, since startup while leading and overcoming challenges.

n Busi-ness of the Year - A-warded to a company in business six or more years in Lee County, under the same corporate name and ownership, which offers high-quality products and services, provides superior customer service, demonstrates strong ethical standards, is community-minded, supports employee development, exhibits exemplary leadership within its industry and among its clients and contributes to the economic growth and free enterprise of Lee County.

The Lee County Economic Devel-opment Office provides business assistance to retain existing businesses, encourage entrepreneurship and to attract new businesses, so that Lee County has a strong economy, thriving communities, and broadly shared prosperity. For information, visit

The Horizon Council is a public-private advisory board established in 1991 to advise the Lee County Board of Commissioners on economic development issues. The Council's mission is to improve Lee County's business environment, retain and encourage expansion of existing businesses, and attract new and diversified employers. It is the only public-private partnership of Lee County Government and business leaders. The Horizon Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) organization established as a fundraising vehicle, enabling individuals and businesses to actively support the program of work of the Horizon Council and the Lee County Economic Develop-ment Office. For more, visit or call 239-533-6800.

Women in Business to host a Couples Panel June 7

The Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce June Women in Business meeting will be held at the Florida Repertory Theater June 7, from 4-6 p.m., located on 2268 Bay Street in downtown Fort Myers.

Attendees will have the opportunity to hear from three couples who work together, and learn how they balance their personal and professional lives. Panelists include Judy and Andrew Williams from Spada Salon and Day Spa; Bryon and Kellie McCartnery from Brilliant Lens; and Susan and Guido Minaya from Minaya Learning Global Solutions.

Admission is $10 for Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce members and $20 non-members. To register, call 239-332-3624 or visit

Part of the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce, the Women in Business committee is dedicated to helping women achieve their fullest professional and personal potential. A variety of networking and educational programs are offered throughout the year, typically the first Wednesday of every month from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Located at 2310 Ed-wards Drive in Downtown Fort Myers, the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Com-merce Inc. has been serving Lee County and surrounding areas since 1989. The Greater Fort Myers Cham-ber of Commerce is a business organization of professionals who support and promote a progressive, sustainable community.



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