Board of Directors
Chief Executive Officer
Herat of Florida Regional Medical Center
|Heart of Florida Regional Medical Center
40100 US Highway 27
Davenport, Florida 33837
Heart of Florida Regional Medical Center is a licensed 193-bed, acute care hospital serving the health care needs of Central Florida. With more than 200 physicians on staff in over 30 specialties, Heart of Florida offers a full spectrum of services to care for the entire family. The hospital is fully accredited by The Joint Commission and was named Top-Ranking Hospital in Polk County for 2011-2012 by U.S. News & World Report, and also has been highly ranked in Joint Replacement and Bariatric Surgery. Heart of Florida offers a Designated Stroke Center, as well as a Nationally-Certified Chest Pain Center. Other outstanding services include an entire floor dedicated to all Women’s Services, an Orthopedics and Joint Replacement Center of Excellence, a Center for Cardiac Services offering elective angioplasty and a full-service on-campus Therapy Center. Heart of Florida has grown almost continuously since opening the new location in 1997. To locate a physician in our area please contact the hospital’s Physician Referral Line at 863-419-2341.
Office Director Envisors a Division of Pennoni
|Envisiors a Division of Pennoni
2105 Dundee Rd
Beth L. Evans, AICP, LEED AP, joined Pennoni in 2014 when the firm acquired the assets of Envisors Engineers, Surveyors & Planners in Winter Haven, FL, where she was employed for 27 years as a partner in the firm and as Senior Vice President. Now as Office Director for Envisors, a Division of Pennoni, Beth is responsible for the continued growth and success of the Winter Haven office through the management of client relationships and business development efforts, in addition to overseeing planning projects for the firm.
Beth earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Florida and is an AICP certified planning and LEED accredited professional.
She is an active member of the American Planning Association and serves enthusiastically on numerous local community boards. Beth is genuinely passionate about participating in helping to grow Florida’s local economy and position in the global economy
Senoir Vice President Commercial Lending
7722 SR 544 East
Rusty has lived in Davenport for the past fifteen years and is married to Cyndi Mouton. He is the proud father of two grown children and two grandchildren.
Rusty has been in banking for 36 years in Louisiana, Indiana and for the last 15 years in The Central Florida market. He is an experienced Commercial Real Estate Lender, and has significant experience in Commercial and Industrial Lending, Business Development, Credit Administration, Management and Accounting.
Headquartered in Davenport, Florida between Orlando and Tampa, CenterState operates through two subsidiary banks providing a range of consumer and commercial banking services, including trust services . These services are provided to individuals, businesses and industries within eighteen counties throughout Central Florida.
In addition to providing traditional deposit and lending products and services to its commercial and retail customers, the Company also operates a correspondent banking and bond sales division. The division is integrated with and part of the lead subsidiary bank located in Winter Haven, Florida, although the majority of the bond salesmen, traders and operations personnel are physically housed in facilities located in Birmingham, Alabama, Atlanta, Georgia and Winston Salem, North Carolina. The division brokers fixed income securities, trades for its own portfolio, provides safe-keeping services, bond accounting services, and assets/liability consulting related activities. The customer base includes small to medium size financial institutions primarily located in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.
1006 Marley Drive,
Haines City, Florida 33844
Sofidel America is fully integrated paper manufacturer of quality tissue and towel products, with four strategically located state of the art manufacturing facilities in Haines City, Florida; Henderson, Nevada; Green Bay, Wisconsin and Tusla, Oklahoma.
Our commitment is to maintain these high standards of performance in every area of our business as well as provide exceptional service to our customers. Sofidel is employing more than 350 people nationwide and produces over 80,000 tons of tissue and towels. In addition to offering a broad range of dispensing systems, we are a leading supplier of quality bath tissue and towel products for both the commercial market (away from home markets) and the consumer retail markets. We take extreme pride in our brands, Heavenly Soft®, Confidence® and Heavenly Choice®, as well as the private label products which carry the brand of our customers, are all manufactured to only the highest of standards.
Dr. Martha Santiago
|Polk State College
999 Avenue H NE Winter Haven FL 33881-4299
Martha Santiago is the Provost of Polk State College – Winter Haven Campus. Polk State College was established in 1964 and serves over 20,000 students while providing fully accredited associate’s and bachelor’s degrees and a wide range of workforce certificate and continuing education opportunities through its Corporate College and other units. Polk State provides outstanding Fine Arts programs and the Polk State Eagles boast multiple championship intercollegiate athletic teams and national rankings. Polk State currently operates campuses in Winter Haven and Lakeland and centers in Lake Wales, Lakeland, Bartow (the new Clear Springs Advanced Technology Center), and also, a satellite location in Haines City. In addition, the College offers an array of online programs and operates three outstanding charter high schools. With thousands of local alumni and dozens of public venues, the College has a rich tradition of community engagement. “We are Polk,” states Martha Santiago, as she focuses on supporting student success, thus ultimately, creating a culture of entrepreneurship that makes our communities more competitive.Martha enjoys living in Winter Haven and is an active member of various community organizations. She is married to Alex Santiago, and is a proud mother of two children and has four grandchildren.
Polk County Commissioner District 3
Polk County Commissioner District 3
P. O. Box 129
A fourth-generation Floridian born in Bartow, Bill Braswell has lived his entire life in Polk County. Bill’s father worked at the W.R. Grace phosphate mines, and his mother was a citrus sectionizer for Ben Hill Griffin. He graduated from Bartow High and earned a degree in agronomy from the University of Florida. Bill served 21 years (active duty and Reserves) as a pilot in the U.S. Air Force, retiring with the rank of Major. He also flew for Delta Airlines for 20 years before his retirement in 2008. In 2000 Bill began farming blueberries, and today his wife and stepson help him operate farms in Auburndale and Haines City. He manages the largest blueberry farm in Florida for Clear Springs, located in Bartow. Bill and Cathy have been married for 22 years.
Economic Development Manager
4121 St. Lawrence Drive
New Port Richey, FL 34653
Duke Energy Corporation is an energy company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C. Its regulated utility operations serve 7.2 million electric retail customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest, representing a population of approximately 21 million people. Duke Energy is a Fortune 250 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK.
Duke Energy Florida’s service area covers approximately 20,000 square miles in west-central Florida and the Panhandle, and includes the densely populated areas around Orlando, as well as the cities of St. Petersburg and Clearwater. Duke Energy Florida is interconnected with 22 municipal and nine rural electric cooperative systems. Duke Energy Florida provides electric services to approximately 1.7 million residential, general service and industrial customers in 35 counties.
In Polk County, the company serves over 92,000 customers and operates 5 natural gas fired power plants just outside of Bartow at the Hines Energy Complex. The total output is nearly 2,000 megawatts and the site generates more than $11 million in property taxes for Polk County each year.
Duke Energy’s Economic Development team continues to be recognized by Site Selection magazine on its annual list of Top Utilities in Economic Development. Duke Energy Florida is committed to creating a sustainable energy future through a balanced portfolio.
Dr. Jose E. Garcia Jr., MD
Chief Executive OfficerAmerican Care
11255 SW 211 Street
Miami, Florida 33189
Chief Executive Officer, American Care, Inc. 1996 to the present. A large primary care group with 17 medical centers throughout Florida.
Physician, graduated in 1987 from the University of Miami School of Medicine in Miami, Florida.
Internal Medicine Residency at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami; American Board of Internal Medicine Clinical Investigator Residency Program
Rachel Edwards Gibbs
Edwards Construction Services, Inc
|Edwards Construction Services, Inc.
Rachel Edwards Gibbs is the 3rd Generation at Edwards Construction Services, Inc. With a Masters in Social Work from Florida State University, Rachel suprisingly found herself in the construction industry working with the Edwards Construction family. Founded by her father and grandfather in 1978, Edwards Construction focuses on commercial and industrial projects throughout the Southeastern United States with offices in Ocala, Orlando, Lakeland and Charlotte NC. Edwards Construction is a 37 year old design-build construction management firm. Edwards’ success is in their mission: 100% Customer Satisfaction. Edwards has built over 12 million square feet of industrial/ manufacturing/ food and beverage projects. Other areas of expertise include high end clubhouses and amenity centers, Senior Living facilities (Assisted Living/Memory Care, Skilled Nursing, and Independent Living) Medical Office and general commercial.
Edwards Construction is different from competition by becoming an extension their client’s business. Edwards provide and “open book” policy in which competitive pricing, fast track construction schedules, and excellent quality and communication is standard operation. This often exceeds customers expectations and contributes to excellent local subcontractor relationships. The local economy where buildings are constructed is positively impacted when Edwards has projects in the area. Edwards is a company of integrity and takes pride in making sure customers are satisfied while maintaining an excellent reputation.
Coldwell Banker Commercial
Honorary Board Member
Coldwell Banker Commercial NRT
Serving Polk County, Florida’s commercial real estate brokerage needs for over 40 years, the East Polk County Commercial Division of Coldwell Banker has the depth of knowledge and breadth of experience to keep up with today’s ever changing commercial real estate market.
Gloria J. Spanjers, GRI, has devoted herself to full-time real estate sales since 1987. She had previous experience as the Assistant VP for Marketing and Sales at Florida Cypress Gardens and as an independent marketing consultant. This vast background in sales and marketing, coupled with years of real estate experience as a top producer, give Gloria the ability to deal with very complex sales and marketing issues.
President & CEO CareerSource Polk
600 N. Broadway Ave
Bartow, FL 33830
Stacy serves as the President & CEO for CareerSource Polk. In this role, Stacy leads a workforce system consisting of the CareerSource Polk Corporate Office, two full-service Career Centers, a Mobile Career Center Unit, a Youth Services division and a Business Services division within the fourth largest county in land mass in Florida. She has over 14 years of experience in workforce development. In 2002, Stacy joined the workforce system as the Assistant Director for Business Services. Within 2 years she was promoted to Program Director, where she remained for four years before being selected as President & CEO in September 2006.
Stacy takes seriously the responsibility of improving Polk County’s workforce through continuous improvement in skill development and leadership management. Her 10 years as a college administrator in the field of Student Affairs provided a solid foundation for academic, personal and professional development. Her leadership positions at the University of Florida and Florida Southern College have enhanced her expertise in the areas of counseling/coaching, motivational speaking, training, facilities and process management, leadership development and strategic planning. Stacy is very involved in the community and acts as a catalyst in forming successful relationships with vital business and education partners. Stacy currently several boards throughout the county.
Stacy holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Educational Psychology and a Master of Science Degree in Counseling from Mississippi State University. She is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) as well as a Florida Workforce Development Professional (FCWP), a Nationally Certified Workforce Development Professional (CWDP) and a Job & Career Transition Coach (JCTC).
| Betsy Cleveland
President Northeast Polk Haines City Chamber of Commerce
|Northeast Polk Haines City Chamber of Commerce
35610 U.S. 27, Haines City, FL 33844
The Chamber is the front door to our community. Residents and visitors contact and stop by the Chamber for information on community events and local services. Conveniently located on Highway 27, we have served the community and visitors from our current location since 1961 – 53 years. The Chamber is here to welcome visitors, new residents and locals with community questions. Stop by to pick up our Business Directory & Newcomer’s Guide that will guide you to our restaurants, hotels, shopping, and recreation. Our Chamber membership includes an array of viable businesses in the Northeast Polk County Region and beyond. New business developments in the Industrial Park and medical clusters locating on Hwy 27 near the hospital are bringing well-paying jobs and economic stimulus to our community, which is bettering our quality of life for our residents and visitors alike.
|Central Florida Development Council
5908 Hillside Heights Drive
Lakeland, Florida 33812
Phone: (863) 937-4430
Sean is responsible for leading and implementing the economic development plan for Central Florida Development Council, Inc. and Polk County. Sean became the President/CEO of the CFDC in September of 2016. He originally joined the organization as Vice President in November of 2015, where he led the business development team. Prior to the Central Florida Development Council, Sean was the Director of Industry Partnerships at Florida Polytechnic University. Sean was responsible for developing collaborative partnerships and alliances with leading companies in the research, technology, and engineering fields. Throughout his career, Sean has had the opportunity to direct economic and business development initiatives for a variety of organizations, including Enterprise Florida and Pasco Economic Development Council. He has been directly involved in the successful recruitment and expansion of a diverse set of companies throughout the region and the state of Florida. Sean has also worked in private industry for Outsource Partners International, a global finance and accounting outsourcing firm and as a real estate consultant for Keller Williams Realty. Sean earned a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Business Management from Purdue University. He lives in Lakeland with his wife and their two daughters.
|Horace West, Mayor of Haines City, Florida
Rick Sloan, Acting City Manager of Haines City
Lori Cunningham, Polk County School Board District 3