Monthly Archives: December 2014

SRQ Women in Business: Lee-En Chung Shares Her Success in Construction

From left to right: SRQ President & Editor in Chief Lisl Liang, Director of Strategic Partnerships Ashley Grant, Women In Business Leadership Circle Member Lee-En Chung.

From left to right: SRQ President & Editor in Chief Lisl Liang, Director of Strategic Partnerships Ashley Grant, Women In Business Leadership Circle Member Lee-En Chung.

The SRQ Women in Business Leadership Circle meets each month for a breakfast at Sophie’s in Saks Fifth Avenue at the mall at University Town Center. All in attendance were thrilled that Pam Rotar from Lafayette 148 New York joined our discussion for a special announcement. On January 22, 2015 SRQ President and Editor in Chief Lisl Liang will interview Lafayette 148 New York Creative Director Edward Wilkerson as part of a special event showcasing upcoming collections. The event promises insight into his creative process, his inspiration for the designs of Lafayette 148 and a fashion presentation.

At each of our monthly gatherings, a member of the Leadership Circle shares their story of challenges they have met along the road to success. Lee-En Chung, P.E., Founder and Construction Consulting Engineer of Ivy Ventures engaged the Leadership Circle with her honest insights on the challenges and hard-earned accomplishments as a construction engineer. We can officially say that Lee-En has done it all. She has overcome tremendous obstacles; she is fiercely committed to achieving her goals and has the ability to light up a room with her sincerity and strength. We learned a lot about “sticking to your guns” and the power of believing in yourself from her story. And we consider ourselves privileged to count her among our friends at SRQ.

The morning wrapped up with one of those moments you wish you could duplicate at every gathering. A thoughtful, honest discussion unfolded on the importance of growing up with a mentor. Laurey Stryker articulated one of the most interesting things we’ve learned, “You get to a point in your life that you become your own mentor. As you teach others, you teach yourself.”

We are grateful for the members of the Leadership Circle who encourage and motivate us as they mentor and challenge themselves to make this community great.

Special thanks to Sophie’s at Saks Fifth Avenue at University Town Center and Lafayette 148 for their hospitality (and the delicious breakfast spread) and support of the SRQ Women in Business program.

If you would like to nominate an influential member of our community for the Women in Business competition, visit SRQ this January.

SRQ’s Phil Lederer Cooks with Chef Rolf

SRQ Staff Writer Phil Lederer is known in our office for his quick wit and serious talent as a wordsmith. We’ve never known Phil to be much of a cook – but that could quickly change! This week, Phil appeared on his first-ever cooking show with notable Sarasota restaurateur Chef Rolf Zahnd of Salt Water Café.

Chef Rolf Zahnd of Chef Rolf’s New Florida Kitchen teaches SRQ Staff Writer Phil Lederer how to prepare polenta.

Chef Rolf Zahnd of Chef Rolf’s New Florida Kitchen teaches SRQ Staff Writer Phil Lederer how to prepare polenta.

On the menu at Chef Rolf’s New Florida Kitchen was a selection of rich, delicious fare: a starter of creamy crab soup with leeks and potatoes, red snapper and cheesy polenta served with asparagus and a custardy apple pie. Phil served as sous chef in preparing the cheesy polenta, which was served alongside Chef Rolf’s red snapper. Photo evidence of the day’s events show Phil at the helm of a steaming pot of polenta wielding a spoon. And we must say, we are very impressed with Phil’s newfound culinary expertise.

SRQ Staff Writer Phil Lederer stirs polenta on the set of Chef Rolf’s New Florida Kitchen.

SRQ Staff Writer Phil Lederer stirs polenta on the set of Chef Rolf’s New Florida Kitchen.

Representing SRQ Phil, was able to speak to Chef Rolf about SRQ Daily—the magazine’s daily e-newspaper. Featuring editorial selections, local news, upcoming community events and need-to-know snippets about living local in Sarasota and Bradenton, SRQ Daily will soon be celebrating 10 years of inbox expertise. Of the adventure, Phil shared his favorite part: “The custardy apple pie which he served with some ice cream and whipped cream. Flaky delicious crust, warm custard, green apples. Scrumdiddlyumptious.”

We can’t wait to watch the episode, which is set to air in January. Each new episode of Chef Rolf’s New Florida Kitchen airs on Channel 26 (Verizon) and Channel 6 (Comcast) on Mondays at 7:30 pm, Wednesdays and Fridays at 12:30 pm, or Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 12:30 am. If you are looking for ideas for your holiday feast or weeknight meals, previously aired episodes can be viewed here.

If you would like to receive your very own copy of SRQ Daily directly to your inbox each morning, sign up on our website. It’s free, informative and a great way to start your day.

Reinvent Retirement: Gather Insight This January 22, 2015 at SB2

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Times they are a-changin’. For a large majority of baby boomers, the idea of full-time retirement at age 65 is more folklore than reality. With recent economic changes and an evolving concept of the span of work, more and more boomers are redefining what it actually means to retire.

On January 22, 2015 SRQ | The Magazine will host “Reinvent Retirement: Boomers & Caregivers”, a symposium dedicated to changing trends as our workforce ages, financial planning for the future, navigating the difficulties of serving as a caregiver for aging parents and tax considerations.

January’s panelists include:

  • Kelly Caldwell: CEO and President, Caldwell Trust Company
  • Erin McLeod: Senior Vice President, The Friendship Centers
  • Kathy Black, Ph.D.: Professor of Social Work and Gerontology, University of South Florida at Sarasota/Manatee
  • Robert Karnick: ROBRADY Design
  • Tim Hearon: Chief Executive Officer, Boomerswork
The monthly SB2 Symposiums were born out of the desire to present regionally relevant topics and foster a dialogue on ways to strengthen the Sarasota and Bradenton community. To purchase tickets, please visit www.SRQSB2.com
Reinvent Retirement: Boomers & Caretakers
Breakfast Symposium: Thursday, January 22, 2015
7:30- 9 am
The Francis (1289 N. Palm Avenue, Sarasota, Florida)

Let it Snow: Celebrating the Holidays with the SRQ Team at The Studios

Left to right: Christina M. de Guia, SRQ President & Editor in Chief Lisl Liang, Julie Henry of The Pulse Team. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

Holiday crooners, a delicious spread of hors d’oeurves and bubbly libations greeted the guests of our 2014 SRQ Media “Let it Snow” holiday party on Thursday, December 11. The warm fire at the door welcomed everyone entering the SRQ Studios for our annual celebration! Each year, the SRQ team relishes spending the evening with business owners and individuals who make “living local” in Sarasota and Bradenton a reality.

SRQ Media Group hosted the "Let it Snow" Client Holiday Party on December 11, 2014 at the SRQ Studios. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

SRQ Media Group hosted the “Let it Snow” Client Holiday Party on December 11, 2014 at the SRQ Studios. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

The sound of laughter filled the party as guests enjoyed the photo booth and mingled. Michael’s on East catered the event with beautiful platters of the most delicious holiday fare! Guests enjoyed skewers of Malaysian beef satay, the most enticing shrimp provençal we’ve ever seen, warm Key West conch fritters served with Thai chili sauce, artfully assembled grilled endive bites stuffed with Cabrales cheese and pear (wrapped in Serrano ham!), grilled beef rolls with scallions and soy sauce, delicate steamed vegetable shumai – and the crowd favorite, mini New England lobster rolls.

Guests enjoyed delicious bites from Michael's on East. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

Guests enjoyed delicious bites from Michael’s on East. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

Stephen Fancher and Bart Lowther, financial advisors of MLC & Associates delighted the party with a selection of classic holiday tunes and a few crowd favorites (they had us at Michael Bublé, The Beatles, Frank Sinatra and John Legend). Don’t let their profession fool you – their music was magical. A selection of red and white wine and champagne, provided by Bijou Café was served alongside a variety of beers and the signature “Let it Snow” cocktail made with Siesta Key Rum. As the celebration carried on, our guests congregated in our favorite place at SRQ Studios—the kitchen.

Stephen Fancher and Bart Lowther of MLC & Associates entertained guests. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

Stephen Fancher and Bart Lowther of MLC & Associates entertained guests. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

Before the evening drew to a close, guests indulged in handmade gingerbread men from Sift Bakehouse and the most delicious mini treats from Heavenly Cupcakes.

West Roberts, Executive Publisher and Owner of SRQ Media Group shares his sentiments about the annual holiday gathering, “The SRQ Holiday party is always wonderful–we are proud to have clients that are wonderful friends as well. Our holiday parties always feel more like a happy family reunion and it’s great to see everyone connecting and socializing. The SRQ staff also did an incredible job of running around like a pack of happy holiday elves and transforming the SRQ Studio into a beautiful holiday wonderland.”

To view photos from the event, click here.  

Daniel Jittu, _____ and _______ pose for a photo at the SRQ "Let it Snow" Holiday Party. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

Daniel Jittu and Mikael and Karen Hansen of Copenhagen Imports pose for a photo at the SRQ “Let it Snow” Holiday Party. Photo Credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund.

On behalf of the SRQ Media Team, happy holidays to our all of our partners, clients and dear friends. Thank you for commitment to our community and the ways you make it so very special.

If you are interested in hosting an event at the SRQ Media studio space for a holiday party, client function or board retreat, let us know! We would love to have you. Contact Mary Darby Guidroz at 941-365-7702 x221 (marydarby.guidroz@srqmediagroup.com) to place your reservation for 2015.

SRQ ACCESS: HOT OFF THE PRESS!

The 2015 Edition of SRQ ACCESS hits newsstands January 1, 2015.

The 2015 Edition of SRQ ACCESS hits newsstands December 22, 2014.

The promise of the New Year is always exciting. New plans, new resolutions a whole year ahead full of reasons to celebrate. At SRQ, we are celebrating the 2015 edition of SRQ ACCESS!

Within the freshly printed pages is everything you need to know about living local in Sarasota and Bradenton. From restaurants to arts and culture to shopping, attractions, beaches and neighborhoods to businesses—not to mention some fabulous reads from the SRQ editorial team—we couldn’t be happier to share the best of the region with our loyal readers.

If you are new in town or looking for new things to do, see and taste, pick up your very own copy! It makes a great gift for welcome gift for visitors and can answer the never-ending question of “what should we do tonight?” You’ll find the answer inside.

Did we mention the size of SRQ ACCESS? We can’t help but think of William Shakespeare, “And though she be but little, she is fierce.” Perfectly proportioned to fit in your beach bag, favorite tote, purse or ride alongside you as you take in the region, we know you won’t want to leave home without it!

Ring in the New Year with your own copy of SRQ ACCESS: Sarasota Bradenton Visitors & Newcomers Guide 2015, on newsstands December 22, 2014!

SB2: What We Learned About Attracting Tomorrow’s Donors

December SB2 Panelists. From left to right: Jeff Troiano, Julie Lyman, Jay Clarkson, Veronica Brady, Bob Blalock and SRQ Executive Publisher Wes Roberts.

December SB2 Panelists. From left to right: Jeff Troiano, Julie Lyman, Jay Clarkson, Veronica Brady, Bob Blalock and SRQ Executive Publisher Wes Roberts. Photo credit: Jessica McKnight

Philanthropy is a topic that is often discussed at our monthly SB2 Symposiums – and based upon participation, there’s a reason why! Monday’s sold out audience was treated to a panel discussion of the highest caliber.  SB2: Business of Philanthropy shared the challenges of critical planning that face non-profits in our region with insights from two community foundations and experts representing donors through financial and estate planning.

Mike McMullan of event sponsor Seaside Bank opened the discussion with a defining statement about charitable giving, “Philanthropy is about kindness, consideration and keeping an eye out for what will make a difference in the community.” Our previous SB2 events have focused on charitable giving and the organizations in our area that support worthy causes. Monday’s SB2 explored giving from the philanthropist’s perspective and what non-profits will need to do to continue to retain and develop their donor base.

The December SB2 audience listens to the panel discussion on philanthropy.

The December SB2 audience listens to the panel discussion on philanthropy. Photo Credit: Jessica McKnight

1. Recent challenges for non-profits and foundations:

  • Veronica Brady from The Gulf Coast Community Foundation says. “After the Great Recession, we had to stimulate people to feel comfortable giving again. We wanted to make philanthropy available to everyone. Not everybody can give money, but involving them with a cause is just as critical.”
  • The geographic location of the Sarasota and Bradenton area lends itself to part-time residents and individuals relocating to our community. With a potential donor base that resides and gives in another region, there is an untapped potential of donors that need to be reached with our organization’s messaging and missions. “People like to give their dollars where they spend their time,” says Jeff Troiano of Williams Parker Harrison Dietz & Getzen.
Jay Clarkson of CS&L CPAs answers a question as Julie Lyman of The Community Foundation of Sarasota listens in.

Jay Clarkson of CS&L CPAs answers a question as Julie Lyman of The Community Foundation of Sarasota listens in. Photo Credit: Jessica McKnight

2. What are donors looking for?

  • All of our panelists agreed on one element: transparency is king. “Donors used to write a check to give. Now donors are more of investors than donors. They want a sense of transparency and want to know where the funds are going once they donate,” says Julie Lyman of Community Foundation of Sarasota County.
  • Jay Clarkson of CS&L CPAs was asked about the financial statements of non-profits. “Generally, donors are looking for organizations where 85% of the budget goes to programming, leaving 15% to overhead and support services. But every organization is different and the financial breakdown depends on the year and many other factors.” Clarkson also added “measuring the outcome of programs and investments is also key. Sharing that information with donors is important.”
  • About donor trust, Julie Lyman of The Community Foundation of Sarasota says, “The role of the Community Foundation is to perform necessary due diligence to be sure that the donated funds go to the right place. We provide protection to our donors so that they don’t have to worry.”
Moderator and SRQ Magazine Executive Publisher Wes Roberts leads the panel discussion.

Moderator and SRQ Magazine Executive Publisher Wes Roberts leads the panel discussion. Photo Credit: Jessica McKnight

3. Knowledge is power.

  • When family foundations make plans to give to worthy organizations, it is easy for the more established organizations to take the lions share. According to Bob Blalock’s of Blalock Walters P.A., “with some large estates, their giving choice goes to what they know. Some smaller non-profit organizations end up getting overlooked for that reason. It is important to find out from the foundation what the end goal of donating the money is.”
  • Veronica Brady also talked about the donor’s motive. “Non-profits are all about listening—listening to the donor and not being afraid to ask questions. Sometimes donors that we expect to understand the most effective ways of giving really don’t. It is our job to ask questions, make suggestions and to think a little differently.”

If Monday’s SB2 could be summed up in one quote, it would be from Veronica Brady,  “When it comes to giving, follow what makes your heart sing.”  We couldn’t agree with that statement more. The business of giving is not always clear or easy—but it is always important.

Special thanks to our sponsors for their support in bringing this and other important topics to the forefront of our community: Event Sponsor Seaside Bank, Bradenton Series Sponsor IMG Academy and Sarasota Series Sponsor CS&L CPAs.

Representatives from Seaside Bank, the December SB2 event sponsor.

Representatives from and guests of Seaside Bank, the December SB2 event sponsor. Photo Credit: Jessica McKnight

To view photos from the December SB2, click here. Don’t miss out on next month’s Sarasota symposium on January 22nd SB2: Boomers and Caregivers-The New Retirement, visit www.srqsb2.com to purchase your tickets today!

SRQ Women in Business are Lafayette 148 “Women We Love”

SRQ Magazine Women in Business Leadership Circle Members participate in Lafayette 148 #WomenWeLove campaign. From L to R: Lee-En Chung, Cynthia Holliday, Angela Massaro-Fain, Joy Randels, Kelly Gilliland.

SRQ Magazine Women in Business Leadership Circle Members participate in Lafayette 148 #WomenWeLove campaign. From L to R: Lee-En Chung, Cynthia Holliday, Angela Massaro-Fain, Joy Randels, Kelly Gilliland. Photography credit: Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund

Lafayette 148 celebrates women: the inspiration behind their flawlessly designed fashion line and the focus of their new social media campaign, #WomenWeLove. The diverse personalities, stories, goals and styles of women are always in sharp focus as collections are designed for the sophisticated, modern woman and her multi-faceted lifestyle. As a partner of Saks Fifth Avenue’s Mall at University Town Center location, Lafayette 148 Southeast regional manager Pam Rotar learned of SRQ Magazine’s Women in Business program and immediately recognized the connection to the #WomenWeLove campaign. Not only did Pam join the monthly Women in Business discussion with an impressive presentation on Lafayette 148’s company structure and guiding principals, but she also brought along samples from the latest collection! Members of the Leadership Circle were photographed in their favorite pieces for an upcoming SRQ Magazine editorial project. “It was a pleasure to meet such an interesting group of women. I was so impressed by their successes. They are truly Women we Love! I am so pleased that SRQ magazine and Lafayette 148 have merged forces to support and mentor the women in business in the Sarasota community,” said Rotar.

Members of the Women in Business Leadership circle enjoyed a presentation by Pam Rotar of Lafayette 148.

Members of the Women in Business Leadership circle enjoyed a presentation by Pam Rotar of Lafayette 148.

Members of the Women in Business Leadership Circle were fascinated to learn about Lafayette 148, a privately held, woman-owned company founded on the belief that by managing every stage of the business – from inspiration to materials to manufacturing each piece ensures the highest quality and competitive prices.

Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund photographs Angela Massaro-Fain wearing Lafayette 148.

Senior Photographer Evan Sigmund photographs Angela Massaro-Fain wearing Lafayette 148.

SRQ Magazine is grateful to Saks Fifth Avenue for their sponsorship of the SRQ Magazine Women in Business program. And we are thrilled to make the connection with Lafayette 148 and the #WomenWeLove campaign through this relationship. Sally Schule of Saks Fifth Avenue echoes our sentiments, “Leave it to the SRQ Media team to identify and recognize the Sarasota Women of Influence. It has been a pleasure for Saks Fifth Avenue to unite the Lafayette 148 team with these ladies and hence create our own Women We Love campaign! It just shows Lafayette 148 is a line that fits all lifestyles and all sizes.”