BUSINESS PEOPLE: H-T advertising manager part of Leadership Sarasota 2023

·6 min read

Leadership Sarasota, a program of the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce, has announced the participants in its upcoming class, who will graduate in 2023. Among those chosen for the 2023 Adult Leadership class is the Herald-Tribune Media Group’s advertising sales manager, Alfonso Montemayor II.

Others in the class are:

Heidi Bacharach, Fifth Third Bank; Richeal Bair, Observer Media Group; Travis Barrows, Boys & Girls Clubs of Sarasota and DeSoto Counties; Jeff Bergamo, HBK CPAs & Consultants; Kelly Borgia, Gulf Coast Community Foundation; Lamar Brantley, RITE Technology; Mary Butler, Mary Butler, LLC; Michael Calamaras, Northwestern Mutual; Kay Carrington, Community Foundation of Sarasota County; Sinead Carr, Express Employment Professionals; Desiree Casanova, Sarasota County government; and Amy Concilio, Williams Parker Attorneys at Law.

Catherine Daniel, Morgan Stanley; Jennifer Danis, SouthTech; Matt DeMasi, Atlas Insurance; Andrew Douberly, Dickinson & Gibbons, P.A.; Kelly Edrmann, Nothing Bundt Cakes; Christine Frezza, Bloom Organics Day Spa & Boutique; Vaughn Garcia, S-One Holdings; Will Geisdorf, Mariner Wealth Advisors; Sara Grivetti, Neuro Challenge Foundation; Lexie Guanchez, Boyd Insurance & Investment Services, Inc.; Bianca Harris, Education Foundation of Sarasota County, Inc.; Caitlin Hausinger, Willis Smith Construction, Inc.; Jordan Hoover Sr., Gilbane Building Co.; and James Hugglestone, Fawley Bryant Architecture.

Jessica Johnston, Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC); Matthew Kern, Hancock Whitney; DeAnna King, King HR Services Inc.; Nick Kominos, Capstone Contractors, LLC; Lisa Krouse, Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota County; Lori Leutwyler, Kerkering, Barberio & Co.; Alicia Lewis, Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP; Natalie Macaire King, Icard, Merrill, Cullis, Timm, Furen & Ginsburg, P.A.; Katie Matthewson, Grapevine Communications; David Newton, Gulfside Bank; and Shantel Norman, Visit Sarasota County.

Shawn Patten, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota; Diego Perilla, Lakewood Ranch Medical Center; Laura Purcell, Junior League of Sarasota; Bibiana Rodriguez, Centerstone; Eric Rodriguez, Regions Bank; Maria Schaedler-Luera, Atomica Arts LLC; Toyan Scott, Truist; Alyssa Simons, Children First; Kendra Simpkins, Operation Warrior Resolution; Kristen Theisen, The Florida Center for Early Childhood; Callie Weber, Tidewell Hospice; Alexander Wemyss, Sarasota Memorial Health Care System; Megan Wenger, Tidewell Foundation, Inc.; Tra Williams, Fleet Force Truck Driving School; and Michelle Young, Michael Saunders & Company.

The number of applicants continues to increase each year, with this year’s acceptance also at a record high of 53 participants.  Each applicant goes through a rigorous interview process with members of the Leadership Council, who are also Leadership Sarasota graduates.

WSLR's new station manager, Jesse Coleman, with his wife, Ciera, and children, Calvin and Juniper.
WSLR's new station manager, Jesse Coleman, with his wife, Ciera, and children, Calvin and Juniper.

WSLR, in Sarasota, has hired its first full-time station manager, Jesse Coleman, and also hired Peter Gentile as news coordinator.

Since its founding, WSLR, at 96.5 on the FM dial, has run on volunteers and part-time staff.  In 2018, it took over operation of the Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center. Community support has continued to grow over the years.

Coleman is a Florida native, born and raised in Palmetto and Bradenton. His first experience with Fogartyville was playing an open mic when the venue was located in Bradenton.  Coleman also played live on the air for WSLR with his band Cassolette.

He worked in management at the downtown Whole Foods Market for 10 years. For the past two years, Coleman was manager for Blumenberry Farms, a local organic farm in East Sarasota.

He began as station manager this summer while continuing his education at the University of South Florida, where he is working on an interdisciplinary degree in social sciences with focuses in political science, government and global affairs.

Gentile takes over from Becca Hadwen, who had worked as station manager for two years. He has extensive journalism experience, including stints with the Charleston News and Courier, the then-St. Petersburg Times and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune. He owns and operates his own graphic design company.

Pete Harvey, left, and Nate Sweetman, right.
Pete Harvey, left, and Nate Sweetman, right.

Visit Sarasota County has hired Pete Harvey as director of sports and Nate Sweetman has transitioned to the sports department as the new sports marketing coordinator.

Harvey originally hails from New York but spent almost 20 years in Florida in the sports and resort arenas before residing in the Buffalo, New York, region for the last 15 years.

He was the director of sport development for the Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission and played an integral part in starting the Sports Commission.

Sweetman has been employed since 2021 at Visit Sarasota County as the communications and public relations coordinator, but recently accepted his new role as sports marketing coordinator.

He will oversee the Sports Grant Program and Florida Sports Foundation Grant Program and assist in bringing sporting events to Sarasota County’s premier sporting venues.

Visit Sarasota County leads and supports the tourism industry in Sarasota County by providing programs and promotions to ensure the continued growth of tourism and travel from visitors around the world.


Halfacre Construction Co., of Lakewood Ranch, has hired Eric Graham as its director of community and business diversity.

Graham has more than 20 years of experience advocating for disadvantaged businesses within Florida’s Fortune 100 corporations. In his new role at Halfacre, he will directly oversee outreach to minority, small and local businesses, consult with schools and local government agencies, and develop and execute policies that expand business practices, among other duties.

Most recently, Graham served as the supplier diversity officer for Hillsborough County Public Schools. During his time there, he created an unimpeachable record of service to the Minority Small Local Businesses (MSLB) of Tampa Bay,

Graham attended the University of South Florida MUMA College of Business.


Kristin Harrison, a home health executive for 30 years, has joined Youthful Aging Home Care as executive director to lead the company’s next phase of growth and development in the expanding Sarasota market.

The announcement was made by Youthful Aging founder and CEO Nicci Kobritz, one of the pioneers of concierge in-home care on the Suncoast. Together they will continue to lead the field in customized home care and private home nursing.

Harrison holds a master’s degree in nursing and an MBA in health care. She graduated from the University of Michigan with honors and the University of Phoenix.

She is the former director of Munson Home Services, managing four branches serving 17 Michigan counties with long-term in-home care.

Nurisha Harvey, left, Amanda Horne, center, and Susie Walters, right.
Nurisha Harvey, left, Amanda Horne, center, and Susie Walters, right.

Manatee Community Foundation recently welcomed three new voting members to its board of directors: attorney Nurisha Harvey, Oysters Rock Hospitality businesswoman; Dive Into Reading co-creator Amanda Horne; and community leader Susie Walters.

Former Bradenton Herald Publisher Bob Turner is vice chair, former Bealls Inc. President Conrad Szymanski is treasurer and Sherrill Wealth Management Project Manager Dannie Sherrill is secretary.

Additional board members are Tom Breiter, Tim Henning, Barbara Jennings, Steve Roskamp, Jenifer Schembri, Dr. Xavier Sevilla and Garrett Shinn. Susie Bowie is executive director of Manatee Community Foundation.

Manatee Community Foundation was founded in 1998 to strengthen and enhance the community through philanthropy, education and service.

This article originally appeared on Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Leadership Sarasota names next class, WSLR hires full-time manager