SW Orlando News & Business Briefs

compiled by Lauren Salinero

HFUW begins search for new leadership

Southwest resident RobertBobBrown steps down as president and CEO of Heart of Florida United Way.

After a decade of service as president and CEO of Heart of Florida United Way, Southwest resident Robert BobBrown announced his plans to retire. With more than 45 years of experience as a nonprofit administrator, Brown led HFUW’s conversion to the Investing in Results philosophy, which encourages competitive grant funding for specific community issues focused on prevention. Under his leadership, the nonprofit serves more than 600,000 people annually in the areas of education, income, health and basic needs, making it one of the top United Ways in the nation. Brown will stay on board until a replacement is hired, likely in the fall.

The search for Brown’s replacement commenced immediately, led by volunteers who compose the CEO Search Committee. Interested parties can call Career Partners International — Florida/Caribbean CEO, Robert Newland, or senior vice president and managing director Jim Taylor at 407-771-4141 or confidentially email ceohfuw@cpi-florida.com.

Seniors could see tax break on vehicle tag renewals

In a letter to Orange County’s delegation in the Florida Legislature, Orange County Tax Collector Scott Randolph called on the state of Florida to create a senior driver tax cut. Modeled after similar programs in other states, Randolph’s proposal would save senior drivers millions of dollars each year in tag renewal fees. The state would grant Florida seniors age 65-older a 25 percent discount on their annual tag renewal fee, a savings of $7.03 on a typical vehicle. For the 173,000 tags renewed by Orange County seniors last year, that would mean a total annual savings of more than $1.2 million and more than $35 million statewide.

“Florida seniors need relief,” Randolph said. “For too many seniors, especially those on fixed incomes, motor vehicle fees can break the budget for the entire month.”

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, five states currently offer registration discounts for senior drivers: Alaska, Illinois, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and South Carolina. Any senior discount program in Florida would have to be approved by the state Legislature and Gov. Rick Scott.

CFWL hosts a successful Taste of Windermere

The Taste of Windermere presented by the Central Florida Womens League raised more than $55,000. Approximately 750 people attended the annual event, where more than 25 local participating restaurants were on hand, serving samples and wine, all in the name of raising funds for CFWL and supporting the community.

CFWL has a current membership of more than 130 women and is entirely a volunteer organization. It conducts a variety of fundraising events throughout the year to help the community and assist young women in the pursuit of a higher education. For more information, visit www.cfwl.org on the web.

Orange County holds law enforcement memorial ceremony


Southwest resident and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs (center) attends the 34th annual Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony with Orange County District 6 Commissioner Victoria Siplin (left) and Orange County Corrections Chief Cornita Riley.

Held annually in the courtyard of the Orange County Courthouse, the 34th Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony paid tribute to the region’s fallen law enforcement officers, those who have suffered a serious injury, and the brave men and women who currently serve the community in uniform. Sponsored by the Fraternal Order of Police, the ceremony began with a memorial parade to the courthouse grounds, featuring officers on motorcycles, honor guards, bagpipe players, drummers, uniformed personnel, survivors and guests. The motorcycles from various law enforcement agencies lined the streets of the plaza and later illuminated the courtyard with red and blue lights during the lighting of blue candles at dusk.

The names of the 46 law enforcement officers who died while serving Orange County since 1870 are engraved on the Law Enforcement Memorial Monument. The memorial is the centerpiece of the courtyard and was dedicated in 2000. The event was especially important as Orange County continues to grieve the tragic loss of two of its officers in 2014: Deputy Scott Pine of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and Officer Robbie German of the Windermere Police Department.


061616snbb03Photo courtesy of WOCC

West Orange Chamber of Commerce members celebrate the opening of Mama Louise Restaurant.

West Orange Chamber of Commerce members held a ribbon-cutting for Mama Louise Restaurant. Started by a promise to his mother, restauranteur and chef Joe Esposito opened his family’s recipe book to create home-inspired dishes and a fun atmosphere for Italian dining. WOCC builds partnerships, strong businesses and commitment to the community by serving as the leading business advocate in Central Florida, facilitating opportunity to nearly 1,000 member businesses. For more information, call 407-656-1304 or visit wochamber.com on the web.

As families prepare to honor dads this Father’s Day, Crayola Experience has its own gift in mind. On Sunday, June 19, all dads receive free admission to the family attraction located at The Florida Mall — one free dad per paid admission. General admission to the attraction is $22.99, plus tax. Children under age 2 are free. Crayola Experience is open 10 a.m.-8 p.m. daily. For more information, call 407-757-1700 or visit www.crayolaexperience.com on the web.

Orlando Power Yoga has moved. It is located in the same building at 6735 Conroy Road, but is now in Suite 101. OPY offers daily, monthly and class packages. A schedule of classes can be found online at www.orlandopoweryoga.com.

Victory Martial Arts kicked off its summer camp program with a XMA/Leadership Camp this month. The next sessions will be Safety/Board Break Camp from July 11-15, Traditional MA Belt Promotion Camp from July 18-22, and Back to School/Safety Camp from Aug. 1-5. Session hours are 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and are limited to 20 students per camp. For more information, call 877-797-7988 or visit www.victoryma.com on the web.

Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate is hosting its 102 Days of Summer. From weekend splash parties and dive-in movies to cooking demonstrations, guests can enjoy summer activities. The event runs through Sept. 5. For more information, call 1-800-843-6664 or visit omnihotels.com/orlando on the web.

Leaders of Florida Hospital and the School District of Osceola County announced the grand opening of the Center for Employee Health. The partnership will benefit the health of the school district employees by providing a convenient, centrally located facility for the district’s more that 7,000 employees and their families to receive comprehensive primary care. The center is open six days a week with no cost to those covered under the school district’s medical plans. For more information, visit sdocemployeehealthcenter.net on the web. 💓

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