Lee County/Horizon Council now accepting applications for the 25th annual Industry Appreciation Awards honoring local businesses

HC 25 Anniversary logoTo salute excellence in Lee County’s business community, the Lee County Economic Development Office and the Horizon Council are seeking submissions for the 25th annual Industry Appreciation Awards. The honorees will be recognized during the Industry Appreciation luncheon on Thursday, Aug. 25 at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point in Estero. 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 four categories:

  • the LocalLee Grown Business Award will be awarded to a company that was founded in Lee County and is distinguished by its operational excellence and commitment to the vibrance of Southwest Florida’s business climate;
  • the Business Citizenship Award honors a company whose financial, volunteer and active involvement in organizations and programs have helped create a better quality of life in Lee County;
  • the Emerging Business Leader Award will be awarded to a relative newcomer to Lee County that is experiencing marked growth while introducing inventive products, services or business practices;
  • the Bruce T. Gora Legacy Award has been added to honor the 25th anniversary of the Industry Appreciation Awards. It recognizes an individual who during the last 25 years has established a history of distinguished service and contributions to the betterment and growth of Lee County’s business community.

Applications for the 2016 Industry Appreciation Awards are now being accepted online at LeeCountyBusiness.com. The deadline for submissions is Friday, May 27.

The Horizon Council is a public-private board established in 1991 to advise the Lee County Board of Commissioners on economic development issues. The Council has over 70members representing six cities; chambers of commerce; economic development and trade organizations; community, business, and education organizations; along with various officers and at-large members.  TheLee County Economic Development Office works to attract new and diversified businesses to the area, and improve the overall business environment in Lee County. For more information, visit www.leecountybusiness.com or call 239-338-3161.

Public invited to March 9 meeting to discuss North Fort Myers study

EDO

Lee County Economic Development will host a public meeting with consultants and Lee County government staff to discuss a study focused on stimulating the revitalization of commercial areas in North Fort Myers. The meeting will be held from 5 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 9, at 2201 Second St., room 118, in Fort Myers.

Following the Lee County Board of County Commissioners’ recent approval of a market-based assessment for commercial and mixed-use development in North Fort Myers, DCG Corplan Consulting, Norman E. Taylor & Associates, and D-H & Associates, have been hired to identify market opportunities and constraints to development that may be mitigated by a change in Lee County policy or other actions. The primary target area for the assessment extends from the Caloosahatchee River to Pondella Road and includes the lands between and adjacent to US 41 and Business 41. The Consultants will propose land uses, policies, programs and/or actions that will help by enhancing property values, and improve productivity and function of the area.

The Lee County Economic Development Office works to attract new and diversified businesses to the area, support company growth and expansions, and improve the overall business environment in Lee County. Services include site selection assistance, demographic and statistical information, business assistance, financial assistance, employee training and recruitment and community tours. For more information, visit www.LeeCountyBusiness.com or 239-533-6800.

Tickets available for Annual Horizon Council Annual Meeting on Jan. 29

Diana Kander

The Lee County Economic Development Office, the Horizon Council and Horizon Foundation will host the 2016 Annual Meeting on Friday, Jan. 29 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre, 1380 Colonial Blvd. in Fort Myers. To register online, visit www.horizoneventsite.com.

Now in its 25th year, the Horizon Council invites local business and community professionals to celebrate 25 years of progress, look forward to 2016 and hear from New York Times Best-Selling Author Diana Kander, this year’s keynote speaker.

Kander is a successful entrepreneur, having founded and sold a number of ventures, and a Senior Fellow at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the largest non-profit in the world dedicated to entrepreneurship and education. A Georgetown-educated attorney who left a successful practice to launch her first company, Kander draws on her experience as a founder, investor, and academic to design and implement curriculum in educational institutions and the private sector.

Businesses interested in Horizon Foundation “PaceSetter” Investor/Sponsor opportunities and recognition at the Annual Meeting, please contact B. Pat O’Rourke at bporourke@leegov.com.

The Lee County Economic Development Office works to attract new and diversified businesses resulting in high-wage, high skilled jobs; retain and encourage expansion of existing businesses; and improve the overall business environment in Lee County.  They offer a wide array of services for local, domestic and international businesses. For information on the Lee County Economic Development Office, visit LeeCountyBusiness.com.

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) organizations 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 Development Office. For more information, visit www.leecountybusiness.com or call 239-338-3161.

2016 Industrial Development Authority Officers elected

Gail Markham

Lee County Economic Development office has announced the 2016 Lee County Industry Development Authority (IDA) board members. The IDA is a seven-member board appointed by Lee County Commissioners and tasked with fostering industrial and business development. Through Industrial Development Revenue Bonds, the IDA provides a source of long-term, below-market-rate financing for new and expanding manufacturing facilities.

The newly elected board includes Chair Gail Markham; Vice-Chair Doug Guyre; Treasurer Wayne Kirkwood; Secretary Robbie Roepstorff; Assistant Secretary David Barton; Assistant Secretary Ed Bolter; and At-Large Member Tom Hoolihan.

The Lee County Economic Development Office works to attract new and diversified businesses to the area, support company growth and expansions, and improve the overall business environment in Lee County. Services include Site Selection Assistance, Demographic and Statistical Information, Business Assistance, Financial Assistance, Employee Training and Recruitment and Community Tours. For more information, visit www.LeeCountyBusiness.com or 239-338-3161.

Lee County Economic Development Office presents noted economist Mark Vitner

Posted July 23rd, 2015 by Priority Marketing and filed in Economic Development, Events

managing director and senior economist of Wells FargoMark Vitner, managing director and senior economist of Wells Fargo, will discuss “Global Economic Turmoil and Southwest Florida” at the Horizon Council’s General Membership Meeting, 8:30 a.m. Friday, Aug. 28, at Harborside Event Center, 1375 Monroe St., Fort Myers.

Presented by the Lee County Economic Development Office, Vitner has a reputation for clear analysis of U.S. and global economic conditions. As managing director and senior economist for Wells Fargo, he routinely provides updates on housing markets, commercial real estate, regional economies and inflation. Vitner has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Business Week, USA Today and is a frequent guest on CNBC, CNN, FOX Business News and National Public Radio. Vitner also writes for the company’s “Monthly Economic Outlook” report and “Weekly Economic & Financial Commentary.” Vitner joined Wells Fargo (formerly Wachovia and First Union) in 1993 after nine years of experience as an economist for Barnett Banks.

Vitner is a member of the National Association of Business Economists, American Economic Association, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, Charlotte Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth, Blue Chip Economic forecasting panel and the Western Blue Chip forecast panel. He currently chairs the Economic Advisory Council for the California Chamber of Commerce, serves on the Joint Advisory Board of Economists for the Commonwealth of Virginia, acts as chief economist for the North Carolina Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) and partners with the University of Georgia as a lecturer and practitioner.

The Horizon Council is a public-private board established in 1991 to advise the Lee County Board of Commissioners on economic development issues. The Council has more than 80 members representing five cities; chambers of commerce; economic development and trade organizations; community, business, and education organizations; along with various officers and at-large members. The Lee County Economic Development Office works to attract new and diversified businesses to the area, and improve the overall business environment in Lee County. Services include Site Selection Assistance, Demographic and Statistical Information, Business Assistance, Financial Assistance, Employee Training and Recruitment and Community Tours. For more information, visit www.leecountybusiness.com or call 239-338-3161.

The Lee County Economic Development Office offers numerous resources for businesses considering relocation and site selectors, in addition to incentives, including statistical data, demographic information, custom property locator tools and other research. Current target industries for major growth in Lee County, Florida include medical technologies, aviation, information services and distribution and logistics. For information on the Lee County Economic Development Office, visit LeeCountyBusiness.com.

 

Economic Development marketing strategies and Hertz Equipment Rental highlighted at 23rd annual Horizon Council meeting

Posted January 13th, 2015 by Priority Marketing and filed in Events, Marketing

HF-22118-email-headerThe Horizon Council and Horizon Foundation will host the 2015 Annual Meeting at 11:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 30, at Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre, 1380 Colonial Blvd., Fort Myers. To register online, visit www.horizoneventsite.com.

The luncheon program features keynote speaker John Boland, vice president of business development for Hertz Equipment Rental (HERC), a division of Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. that is slated to spin-off into a stand-alone company. Recently tapped to lead strategic growth and corporate development efforts for HERC, Boland will provide insight into HERC’s operations, why they selected Lee County, and the organization’s anticipated impact on Southwest Florida’s job market and economy.

“Lee County has excelled during the economic recovery due in part to the Horizon Council’s efforts to help the Board of County Commissioners build a vibrant business climate,” said Denis Noah, incoming chair of the Horizon Council. “Big job announcements in 2014 by Gartner, Comcast and Alta Resources prove our efforts are succeeding,”

Lee County Economic Development Director Glen Salyer said, “We are thrilled to have played a part in helping great companies join the Lee County business community last year. We extend a warm welcome to Hertz Equipment Rental, Universal Trailer Corp., Camuto Group and all of the businesses that now view Southwest Florida as a first-class business destination.”

In addition to Boland’s presentation, Andy Levine, president/chief creative officer of Development Counsellors International, will present the findings of “A View from Corporate America: Winning Strategies in Economic Development Marketing,” a survey of 356 corporate executives with site selection responsibilities.

According the “Winning Strategies” survey, Florida ranks No. 2 in U.S. state rankings as having the most favorable business climate. In addition, survey respondents report that online marketing strategies, planned visits, public relations, special events and trade shows are the most influential strategies for reaching executive decision makers.

“It’s a powerful tool to have this insight from key decision makers,” Salyer said. “As we look to grow and strengthen relationships with site selectors and influence corporate executives’ decisions on where to locate, invest and create jobs, we are leveraging this data and building upon these strategies to help guide our 2015 strategic marketing plan and enhance our position.”

“Economic prosperity requires public commitment, private involvement and financial investment, and we are fortunate to have all three in this community. I salute the Horizon Council and its Foundation for contributing so much time, talent and treasure to enhancing economic development in Lee County,” said Lee County Commissioner Larry Kiker, the liaison for the Horizon Council from the Board of County Commissioners.

The Horizon Foundation continues to engage the local business community and provide new opportunities to strengthen Lee County’s business climate. The foundation is dedicated to enabling individuals and businesses to actively support the program of work of the Horizon Council and the Lee County Economic Development Office.

“The achievements of 2014 are due in large part to the support of the local business community, represented by the Horizon Council,” said Bob Koenig, outgoing President of the Horizon Foundation. “We are very pleased with the this year’s successes, and we hope to build upon that as more Lee County businesses see and realize their full potential to influence economic growth this year.”

Those interested in Horizon Foundation “PaceSetter” Investor/Sponsor opportunities and recognition at the Annual Meeting, please contact B. Pat O’Rourke at bporourke@leegov.com.

The Lee County Economic Development Office offers numerous resources for businesses considering relocation and site selectors, in addition to incentives, including statistical data, demographic information, custom property locator tools and other research. Current target industries for major growth in Lee County, Florida include medical technologies, aviation, information services and distribution and logistics. For information on the Lee County Economic Development Office, visit LeeCountyBusiness.com.

The Horizon Council is a public-private 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) organizations 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 Development Office. For more information, visit www.leecountybusiness.com or call 239-338-3161.

 

Horizon Council celebrates the 20th Anniversary of Industry Appreciation Week in Lee County

Local dignitaries and business leaders celebrated the 20th anniversary of Industry Appreciation Week on Friday, Sept. 16 at the Harborside Event Center in downtown Fort Myers River District. Presented by the Horizon Council, an advisory group to the Lee County Board of Commissioners and Fort Myers Regional Partnership, Lee County’s Economic Development Office, Industry Appreciation Week is a statewide event designed to create public awareness about how industry boosts the state’s economy. Lee County celebrated the 20th Anniversary of its annual event to recognize the achievements and contributions of the local business community. Motivational speaker Scott Burrows was this year’s keynote speaker. Scott shared his story of becoming a quadriplegic as a result of an automobile crash. His exceptional story is filled with lessons that pertain to life and business.

Fort Myers Regional Partnership/Lee County Economic Development Office

Dan McGahey, president and principal architect with Gora/McGahey Architects (GMA), has been named to the Business Issues Task Force of the Fort Myers Regional Partnership/Lee County Economic Development Office.

“It is an honor to be part of an impressive list of local leaders who have joined together to address the complex issues that many local businesses are facing today, particularly in the current economic climate,” said McGahey. “This forum gives us an opportunity to pool our expertise and resources in support of retaining and drawing businesses to Lee County.”

McGahey, who oversees all facets of office and project management for GMA, joined the firm in 1984 and became a partner in 1986. He holds a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Minnesota and has served as president of the Florida Southwest Chapter of The Construction Specifications Institute. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects as well as the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards.

For the past 28 years, Gora/McGahey Architects (GMA) has been Southwest Florida’s leading architectural design firm. Earning recognition from the Florida Southwest American Institute of Architects, the Florida Home Builders Association and the Lee County Building Industry Association, the firm has provided award-winning architectural and interior design services for a broad range of clients in the public and private sectors, including several leading area developers. For more information, call 239-275-0225 or visit http://www.gora-mcgahey.com/.