August-September 2012

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Jonathan Tallman, 24, Niceville

Jonathan Tallman, 24, Niceville

Began his career at Northwestern Mutual but quickly broke off to form his own company in the community near where he was born (Eglin Air Force Base). While advising his clients on a wide range of financial issues, from life insurance to investing for retirement, he is active in local organizations like the Rotary Club and chamber of commerce and serves on the alumni board of Northwest Florida State College. He is chairman of the school advisory council for Collegiate High School, coaches basketball at his church (where he also serves on the board), and works at a Guatemalan orphanage twice a year while serving on the board of Friends of Children Everywhere, which operates the orphanage.
Sterling Scott, 27, Panama City Beach

Sterling Scott, 27, Panama City Beach

Has managed parking facilities in multiple states, which he opened with his father, and is now focusing on a facility in Bay County near the Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport. He's involved with the U.S. Ski Association and has been active in several national charity organizations, including Toys for Tots.
Hemant Patel, 30, Quincy

Hemant Patel, 30, Quincy

Owns two award-winning hotels in Gadsden County and has been an active proponent of community economic development efforts. Past president of the local Rotary Club and past chairman of the county's tourist development council, he remains active in the county's chamber of commerce and the Asian-American Hotel Owners Association.
Fred Rabbath, 25, Tallahassee

Fred Rabbath, 25, Tallahassee

At the young age of 25, appears to have done it all already. He has made more than 100 short films — shot and edited with no budget — that have an audience of more than 7.5 million viewers on YouTube. He's won more than 20 film festival awards, speaks four languages fluently (and he's working on three more), is releasing two children's books this fall and sold a patent for a cooling box fan to GE for a hefty sum. In his spare time he's produced and directed commercials for companies like McDonald's and Ace Hardware.
Brian T. Cook, 36, Tallahassee

Brian T. Cook, 36, Tallahassee

Born and raised in Miami and went to FSU, where he met his wife, in the 1990s. He began his business life owning and operating a Chick-fil-A in Palm Beach Gardens but then broke into hospital work nine years ago, at the age of 28. Since then he has served as a COO and CEO of hospitals in Tennessee and, in March, he became CEO of Capital Regional Medical Center in Tallahassee.
Sabrina McLaughlin, 32, Navarre

Sabrina McLaughlin, 32, Navarre

Began her career in radio then branched into marketing for a local company and the Okaloosa County elections office. She formed her own award-winning marketing firm before joining the administrative team at the University of West Florida, where she teaches marketing and public relations courses and is the university's director of marketing and communications.
Let’s Share Our Secret With The World

Let’s Share Our Secret With The World

A real long-term economic opportunity may lie with the international tourist market.
Complacency has quickly settled in

Complacency has quickly settled in

Since the 2010 Gulf oil spill, Congress has taken no action to tighten drilling or safety regulations.
World class ambulance service calls Northwest Florida home

World class ambulance service calls Northwest Florida home

John and Deborah Roche bought Lifeguard Ambulance in 1990, when they lived in Tampa. Then they moved the company back home to Santa Rosa County and now employ hundreds throughout Northwest Florida.
From Hot Dog Stand to Landmark

From Hot Dog Stand to Landmark

The Blue Parrot remains a St. George Island favorite for residents and tourists.
Businesses buttressed FSU campus threatened with closure

Businesses buttressed FSU campus threatened with closure

When the Panama City campus of Florida State University looked to be on the budget chopping block, it was the business community that stepped in to save the day.
Simpson Nurseries' recipe for success

Simpson Nurseries' recipe for success

During the recession, the 110-year-old, family-operated Simpson Nurseries in Monticello not only remains viable, but is actually thriving.
Food trucks are the fastest growing business in Florida

Food trucks are the fastest growing business in Florida

Food trucks are growing at a rate of 10.5 percent — much faster than traditional restaurants, which only grew 1.5 percent last year.
Pumping (Natural) Gas

Pumping (Natural) Gas

Governments and businesses in Northwest Florida are turning to an alternative fuel to save money and the environment.
Walton County tourism bounces back

Walton County tourism bounces back

The tourism-based economy of Walton County has experienced a major rebound. Not only are the repeat customers coming to the beach, so are new visitors from across the country.
Does Your Business Need an App?

Does Your Business Need an App?

It seems like everyone is getting an App. Are you? Do you need it?
13 methods to overcome overload and work smarter

13 methods to overcome overload and work smarter

If your to-do list and bursting-at-the-seams e-mail inbox loom large, here’s how to get a handle on both.
The dirty truth about eating on the clock

The dirty truth about eating on the clock

Help your workers avoid the unhealthy “snack trap” habit.
What are the benefits of bringing retirees to our region?

What are the benefits of bringing retirees to our region?

The organizers behind Choose Tallahassee have millions of them.
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