Sound Bytes Spring 2023
Emerald Coast // Local Happenings
Berkshire Hathaway of Florida Announces Promotions
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beach Properties of Florida has announced the promotions of Katie Crowe to marketing/operations supervisor and Karina Caraballo to marketing manager for the brokerage headquartered in WaterColor, Florida. Crowe and Caraballo are expanding their existing roles to take on additional responsibilities and management duties. Since joining the agency in 2021 as an operations coordinator, Crowe has been responsible for onboarding and training new agents at the brokerage. In her new role, she will continue overseeing agent onboarding along with orientation account management, mobilization of agent tools and company resources, serving as a communications liaison between the agency and area realtor boards and overseeing brokerage marketing initiatives. Caraballo joined the brokerage in February 2021 as a marketing coordinator. As marketing manager, she will develop and oversee company and agent marketing initiatives across all media platforms, institute best practices for agent marketing and employ the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brand in all aspects of the company’s marketing efforts. In addition, Caraballo will serve as the liaison for brand partnerships with the 30A Company and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network.
Emerald Coast // Local Happenings
HCA Florida Fort Walton-Destin Hospital Awards College Scholarship
HCA Florida Fort Walton-Destin Hospital has awarded a $15,000 scholarship to Okaloosa Technical College to support efforts to strengthen and expand the state’s health care workforce. The funding is part of HCA Healthcare’s ongoing commitment to partnering with organizations to help develop a diverse pool of future health care leaders and is designed to ensure that students have the opportunity to graduate and attain a high-quality degree or industry certification. Students enrolled in the nursing program at Okaloosa Technical College complete a year of clinical training at HCA Florida Fort Walton-Destin Hospital while working toward their Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) certification.
» Private Quarters Hair Salon in Tallahassee celebrated 35 years in business on Jan. 15. The salon, which is owned by Brenda Moss, is located in Tallahassee’s Frenchtown community and has received awards from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, including Emerging Business of the Year, Outstanding Business of the Year and Small Business of the Year.
» Stearns Weaver Miller has announced that Adrienne Love has joined the firm’s Tallahassee office as a shareholder who will lead the intellectual property practice. Love’s practice is focused on patent, copyright and trademark matters, including litigation of intellectual property cases in federal courts throughout the United States. Love has more than 15 years in practice where she has litigated trademark opposition and cancellation proceedings and appeals before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, and patent appeals and proceedings in front of the Patent Board of Examiners. She also handles domain name dispute arbitration proceedings under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy and matters arising under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act. Love earned her law degree from the Florida State University College of Law and her bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University.
» James Moore & Company has announced the following promotions: Ben Clark, CPA, has been promoted to audit senior manager at the Tallahassee office following eight years of service at the firm. Clark earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance from Florida State University. Chris Salak has been promoted to audit senior manager at the Tallahassee location. A member of the firm for seven years, Salak holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting and another in finance and marketing from Florida State University.
» The Community Foundation of North Florida is celebrating 25 years of connecting people to charitable causes. Over that time, it has distributed more than $39 million in grants that have contributed to the greater good of the community. Looking ahead to the next 25 years — and beyond — the Community Foundation is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in North Florida through the promotion and support of charitable giving.
New & Notable
» Tallahassee Community College (TCC) has announced that the board of trustees of the Southern Association of College and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) has given the college approval to implement an associate’s degree program in Medical Laboratory Technology. The 76-credit-hour program can be completed in six terms and will be offered at the TCC Ghazvini Center for Healthcare Education. The program expects to launch in the fall of 2023 with an initial cohort of 30 students including health care industry employees and individuals interested in careers in health care environments. TCC received a grant of $250,000 from Bank of America in late 2021 to fund the equipment needed to establish the program.
» Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the appointment of Karen Dearden to the E911 Board. Dearden, of Tallahassee, is the external affairs manager for AT&T Florida. She was previously the communications director for the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. She earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and her master’s degree in counseling and human systems from Florida State University.
» Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the reappointment of John Griffin to the Board of Optometry. Griffin, of Tallahassee, is an attorney with Carson & Linn, P.A. He previously served as cabinet aide and chief of the administrative law Section of the Office of the Attorney General. Griffin earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida and his law degree from Stetson University.
» Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the reappointment of Walter Melton, D.C., to the Board of Chiropractic Medicine. Melton is a licensed chiropractic physician and owner of Downtown Chiropractic and Sports Development. He serves on the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ Medical Review Board and is a member of the Florida Chiropractic Association and the Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce. Melton earned his bachelor’s degree from Florida State University and his doctor of chiropractic medicine degree from the National University of Health Sciences.
» Governor Ron DeSantis announced the appointment of Melissa Stone to the Florida Commission on the Status of Women. Stone, of Tallahassee, is the chief executive officer for Cavalry Strategies. She was previously the chief of staff for former Gov. Rick Scott. Stone earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin.
» Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beach Properties of Florida has announced the promotion of Jan Sirmans to chief operating officer for the brokerage headquartered in WaterColor, Florida. Formerly the vice president of operations, Sirmans will expand her role on the brokerage’s executive team by overseeing daily operations, implementing strategic goals and ensuring the delivery of quality customer service to clients and associates. Since joining the agency in 2011 as an agent coordinator, Sirmans has played an integral role in the company’s growth and expansion, assuming the role of director of operations in 2017 and vice president of operations in 2019. Prior to working in real estate, Sirmans accrued extensive experience in the banking industry, giving her insight into all sides of transaction management.
» Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the reappointment of Katie Spear, O.D., J.D., M.P.H. to the Board of Optometry. Spear, of Pensacola, is the owner of The Vision Hub and Dr. Katie Gilbert Spear, PLLC. She is a member of the Florida Optometric Association, the American Optometric Association and is a former co-editor of Women in Optometry. Spear earned her bachelor’s degree from Auburn University, her master’s degree in public health from the University of Alabama, her doctorate of optometry from the University of Alabama and her juris doctor from the Mitchell Hamline School of Law.
» Bill and Mary Kay Thompson have been named recipients of Bay County’s 2022–23 Teacher of a Lifetime award. As husband and wife, the two were music educators for more than 30 years. The award was established seven years ago to recognize and honor teachers who have greatly impacted their students and contributed to the community. Mary Kay was a music educator at Hiland Park Elementary School, A.D. Harris High School, Oscar Patterson Academy and Mowat Middle School. She retired from Hiland Park in 2010. Bill was a band director at Mosley High School, Rosenwald High School, and Merrit Brown Middle School and ended his career in 2010 at Mowat Middle School.
New & Notable
» HCA Florida Gulf Coast has announced that the opening of the Inpatient Rehabilitation Center with an expansion of rehabilitation services. The $20.5 million, 22,000-square-foot addition includes 20 additional private patient rooms, a gym and a dining area. The center specializes in treating patients who have experienced strokes, cardiac and pulmonary issues, orthopedic fractures, amputations, brain, back and spinal injuries, neuromuscular disorders and other health issues.
Compiled by Rebecca Padgett Frett
Photos courtesy of individuals