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Business Briefs

June 23, 2017
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

FGCU's Westley to address Entrepreneur Society of America

Economics professor Christopher Westley, director of the Regional Economic Research Institute at Florida Gulf Coast University, will speak about Southwest Florida's economy at a meeting of the Entrepreneur Society of America Wednesday, June 28, from 5:30-7 p.m., in Fort Myers.

The meeting will take place at Endeavor Innovative Workspaces, 8831 Business Park Drive, #301, Fort Myers.

The cost is $25 per person. Register at

Bell Tower Shops appoints

Palzer new marketing director

The Bell Tower Shops has announced the appointment of Shannon Mae Palzer as marketing director. Palzer will be responsible for the overall brand strategy development and execution of marketing strategies that drive growth/increase retail traffic/generate awareness for Bell Tower Shops retail offerings and events.

Previously serving as a food and beverage manager at the Stockton Seaview Resort in Galloway, New Jersey, and as the director of marketing and business development with Simon Property Groups for Gloucester Premium Outlets, Palzer has honed her skills in marketing, advertising, social media and public relations.

Bell Tower Shops is a dining and fashion destination in the Fort Myers-Cape Coral market. The open-air center is anchored by Saks Fifth Avenue, The Fresh Market, Bed Bath & Beyond and a 20-screen Regal Cinema complex. Specialty retailers include World of Beer, White House Black Market, Francesca's Collection, Ulta, Banana Republic and Williams-Sonoma.

The Bell Tower Shops are located at the corner of U.S. 41 and Daniels Parkway in south Fort Myers.

For more, call 239-489-1221 or visit

Applebee's offering free meals for kids on July 4

On Tuesday, July 4, families can celebrate the red, white and blue and enjoy a kids eat free special at Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar locations in Florida and Georgia.

Families who dine-in at Applebee's on July 4 will receive up to two free kids' meals with each adult entree purchase. Children ages 12 and under can choose any entree on the Applebee's Kids' Menu. With 26 menu items and more than 650 combinations of entrees, sides and beverages, the Applebee's Kids' Menu offers more Kids LiveWell approved meals than any other national casual dining restaurant.

The Kids Eat Free special is available at Applebee's locations owned and operated by Doherty Enterprises in New Jersey, Long Island, Florida and Georgia. In Florida, Applebee's is located in Boynton Beach, Cape Coral, Coral Springs, Cutler Bay, Delray Beach, Doral, Estero, Florida City, Fort Myers, Fort Pierce, Greenacres, Hialeah, Jacksonville, Lake City, Margate, Naples, North Port, Okeechobee, Palm Beach Gardens, Pembroke Pines, Port Charlotte, Port St. Lucie, Punta Gorda, Royal Palm Beach, Sarasota, St. Augustine, Sunrise, Tamarac, Venice and Vero Beach.

Established in 1985, Doherty Enterprises operates seven restaurant concepts including: Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar, Panera Bread, Chevys Fresh Mex, Quaker Steak & Lube, Noodles & Company, and two of its own concepts, The Shannon Rose Irish Pub and Spuntino Wine Bar and Italian Tapas. As of March 31, 2017, there are approximately 2,000 Applebee's franchise restaurants in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Guam and 15 other countries.

Spirit Airlines to start nonstop service been Southwest Florida International and Hartford, Pittsburgh

The Lee County Port Authority last week announced that Spirit Airlines will begin nonstop service from Southwest Florida International Airport to Hartford's Bradley International Airport (BDL) and Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) on Nov. 9, 2017. Daily flights to both cities will operate throughout the season.

For flight reservations for Spirit Airlines, visit

For more information about Southwest Florida International Airport, visit or Like Us on Facebook at

Women in Business to unveil 12th Annual APEX Award Recipients

The Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce Women in Business will announce the nominees and recipients of the 12th Annual APEX Award on Wednesday, July 12, from 4-6 p.m. at Six Bends Harley-Davidson, 9501 Thunder Road, Fort Myers.

The APEX Awards recognize outstanding individuals in our community who are members of the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce and excel in the areas of professionalism, philanthropy, leadership and mentoring. The recipient(s) will be honored at a spectacular black tie-optional award dinner and ceremony on September 30, 2017.

Nominees this year include: Tracie Bagans, Florida Power & Light; Susan Bennett, Susan Bennett Marketing and Media L.C.; Lydia Black, Alliance for the Arts; Suzanne Boy, Henderson, Franklin, Starnes & Holt, P.A.; Barbara Dell, Dress for Success SW Florida; Megan DiPiero, Megan DiPiero Photography; Cynthia Duff, CopyLady Inc.; Kelly L. Fayer, Kelly L. Fayer, P.A.; Vanessa Fernandez, Pushing the Envelope, Inc.; Kristen Flaharty, Trilogy Laboratories; Meg M. Geltner, PACE Center for Girls Lee County; Michelle Graham, Siesta Pebble, Inc.; Katie Haas, Boston Red Sox; Carolyn Johnson, Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida; Shannon Lane, Boys and Girls Club of Lee County; Ita Neymotin, Esq., Office of Regional Counsel and Criminal Conflict for the Second District Court of Appeal Region of Florida; Jennifer Pfenninger, Embassy Suites by Hilton Ft. Myers - Estero; Christina Schwinn, Esq., Pavese Law Firm; Kristie A. Scott, Knott Ebelini Hart; Samantha Scott, Pushing the Envelope, Inc.; Shelley Starner, Miromar Outlets; and Judy Williams, Spada Salon & Day Spa

The APEX Awards presented by Southwest Florida Distributing, Publishing, Web Advertising will be held on Saturday, Sept. 30, at Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Sponsorship opportunities are available.

For more information on how you can participate in this exciting event, please contact Landen Drake at or 239-332-2930, extension 213.

McIntosh, Tricase join Pearl Brands

Sean McIntosh and Dominic Tricase have joined Pearl Brands' creative team.

McIntosh joins the downtown Fort Myers creative agency as web strategies manager. A native of Arizona, he graduated from Kentucky Christian University with a bachelor's degree in youth and family ministry and from Southwest Florida College with a degree in web design and development. He also serves as a music minister for Mosaic Christian Church and raises funds for the annual Ends of the Earth Cycling through distance runs from Southwest Florida to Key West.

Originally from Syracuse, N.Y., Tricase joins the agency as account services manager. Prior to joining Pearl Brands, he spent more than six years working in broadcast television sales and marketing at NBC, CBS, ABC and CW. He earned a bachelor's degree in broadcasting and mass communications from State University of New York at Oswego. He is involved with many local young professional organizations.

Pearl Brands provides creative services, digital production, brand planning and other marketing communications services for a wide range of clients. The award-winning, strategically focused marketing agency is located at 2233 Second St., in downtown Fort Myers. For more information, call 239-313-6059 or visit

Markham named Woman to Watch

Gail Markham, CPA/ABV/CFF, CFE, CFP, founding partner for Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co., P.A., was recognized as the Woman to Watch Experienced Leader by the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

The FICPA Women to Watch Awards were created to focus on the outstanding women who not only shape the Florida Institute of CPAs, but also the profession.

Markham founded the MNMW firm in 1979 and has extensive experience in litigation services, mediation and forensic accounting.

Markham Norton Mosteller Wright & Co., P.A. 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 information, call (239) 433-5554 or visit

Call for nominations for Business Ethics Award

The Uncommon Friends Foundation has opened nominations for the 2017 Business Ethics Award, which are due no later than Sept. 1, 2017. Businesses in any of Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Hendry and Glades counties who consistently demonstrate a system-wide commitment to high ethical business practices are eligible. Businesses can nominate themselves or be nominated by a third party. The online nomination form and detailed submission guidelines are available at

Independent judges will determine finalists and the winner.

Finalists will be announced in advance and honored at a special business ethics luncheon hosted by Florida Gulf Coast University's Lutgert School of Business and the Uncommon Friends Foundation on Nov. 1. The winner of the Business Ethics Award will be revealed at the annual Uncommon Evening on Thursday, Nov. 2, at the historic Burroughs Home & Gardens in Fort Myers.

The Uncommon Friends Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to lifelong character building among today's youth and business leaders. It is located at the historic Burroughs Home & Gardens at 2505 First Street. Its waterfront Gale McBride Pavilion is available for public and private weddings and events. Public tours of the historic home are available by reservation. For more information, call 239-337-9503.

Southwest Florida ATD chapter master class session July 14

On Friday, July 14, the local chapter of the Association for Talent Development will hold a unique educational session for training and talent development professionals from 8 a.m. to noon at Keiser University, 9100 Forum Corporate Parkway, Fort Myers. This special master class seminar entitled "Road to the Future - 5 Keys to unlock success for TD and HR Professionals" will be delivered by industry thought leaders who will share trending information and a powerful view of the future of business and talent development.

This TED-talk format offers special insight and practical tools to help local business leaders map out strategies and tactics for future success. The program is approved for 3 hours of SHRM and HRCI recertification credit for attendees. The cost, $79 for members of ATD, SHRM SWFL or HR Collier and $99 for guests, includes breakfast. Pre-registration is required at

To learn more about the Southwest Florida Chapter meetings, contact Teresa Hiatt via the chapter website at

21st Century Oncology Homeless Veterans Collection Drive held

On Friday, June 16, Lee County Sheriff's Office employees participated in 21st Century Oncology's "Homeless Heroes Collection Drive." The collection drive is in memory of Debra Dempsey, manager of Veterans Programs and Services.

Lee County Sheriff's Office employees donated in excess of $900 worth of items needed to help support local homeless veterans. Boxes were placed at our headquarters location, jail facility and CORE facility for a week. At the end of the week, the boxes were overflowing with items for the donation drive.

"21st Century Oncology's work within our community is absolutely beneficial and provides so many resources. We are thankful for our Veterans and want to help them in any way we can. This collection drive is just one way for us to say thank you and partner together for such a worthy cause," Undersheriff Carmine Marceno said.

Southwest Florida International Airport records historic best month of May for passenger count

During May, 629,321 passengers traveled through Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers, an increase of 3.7 percent compared to May 2016. This number also represents the best May in the 34-year history of the airport. Year-to-date, passenger traffic is up 1.4 percent from the same period last year.

The traffic leader in May was Delta Air Lines with 161,356 passengers traveling to and from Fort Myers. Rounding out the top five airlines were Southwest (139,117), American (112,631), JetBlue (78,081) and United (52,638).

Southwest Florida International Airport had 5,922 aircraft movements (takeoffs and landings), an increase of 3.8 percent compared to May 2016. Page Field saw 8,319 movements, an 11.7 percent decrease from May 2016. In addition, slightly more than 2.5 million pounds of air freight moved through Southwest Florida International Airport in May 2017, an increase of 12.1 percent compared to May 2016.

Southwest Florida International Airport served 8.6 million passengers in 2016 and is one of the top 50 U.S. airports for passenger traffic. No ad valorem (property) taxes are used for airport operation or construction. For more information, visit or Like Us on Facebook at

Aspen Dental practices offering dental services for veterans

This Saturday, June 24, nearly 450 Aspen Dental practices across the country, including here in the local area, will open their doors to provide a day of free dental care for thousands of the nation's veterans.

Local veterans have already made appointments in advance at a participating office and will receive free care June 24.

Of the more than 21 million veterans across the U.S., fewer than 10 million are enrolled for U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs health benefits, which for many does not include dental care benefits, and more than 1.2 million lack health insurance altogether.

The June 24 Day of Service will be Aspen Dental's fourth annual, and is the largest single-day oral health initiative targeted at veterans. It's part of Aspen Dental's Healthy Mouth Movement, a community-giving initiative to deliver free dental care to veterans.

There is one Aspen Dental office in Cape Coral at 305 Pine Island Road, Unit 1. For additional information, call 239-791-5180.



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