this issue

SBA Awarded: See who received the plaque for this monthly award. Page 7

King of the Wing: Who has the best wings in town? See who was chosen top chef at the luau. Page 4

New To The Chamber: New members gather at reception. Page 3

Buy Lakeland. It makes good cents! • visit



June 2009

Vol. XIX, No.6

In these challenging times, it makes us realize how fortunate we are to live and work in Lakeland.
Not only do we have a rich quality of life in the abundance of educational, cultural, recreational and economic assets, but we also have a strong sense of community and commitment to work together for the greater good. Now more than ever, we need to do business here in Lakeland first. By keeping our purchases in Lakeland, we’re supporting family, friends and neighbors who are locally employed. Not only is our economy positively impacted, but monies spent here go toward improvement of our roads, schools and all the resources that make Lakeland great. This Chamber is very proud to represent our 1,900 member businesses in the Lakeland area. I want to take this opportunity to thank each of you for your long-standing loyalty and support. Your membership investment allows us to continue to provide the needed programs and services to sustain our economic health.


Plans are now underway to produce the 2010 Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce Buyer's Guide. This professional guide is one of the best marketing tools offered by the Chamber to help members promote their business products and services. Accuracy of information is critical. Verification Forms will be sent to every Chamber member business during the month of June to verify current information listed in the chamber membership database. It is vital that all Chamber member businesses review their information to ensure its accuracy and return the form to the Chamber.

When doing business here in Lakeland, please visit the Chamber Web site at to identify the member businesses offering the products and services you are looking for. One more important request … please make sure you tell them you’re doing business with them BECAUSE they’re a Chamber member! By supporting each other, we’ll come out of this economic downturn even stronger than before. Best regards,

Kathleen L. Munson, President

If you do not receive this important form, please contact Mary Stevenson at 863/688-8551 Ext. 232 or E-mail:

ALSO INSIDE: New Members • EMERGE Lakeland • Ribbon Cuttings • Members on the Move

for 2010 Board of Directors

The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce is fortunate to be led by an elected 38-member board of directors and five ex-officio members. These dedicated volunteer leaders direct the governance of the Chamber and represent the interests of our 1,900 members. In July, a nominating committee headed by Chair-elect Joe L. Ruthven (The Ruthvens) will convene to nominate 12 new directors to serve a three-year term on the Chamber’s Board of Directors, effective January 1, 2010. Active Chamber members in good standing are invited to submit their name or the names of other members who meet the qualifications of nomination. Nominations will be submitted to the 2010 Officers and Directors Nominating Committee. Names of proposed board candidates should be submitted no later than Friday, July 10, 2009 to: Kathleen Munson, President, Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce, P.O. Box 3607, Lakeland, FL 33802-3607, by FAX: 683-7454 or by email: Questions regarding the nomination process may be directed to Kathleen at 688-8551, ext. 234 or to the above email address.

Chamber Foundation
The Lakeland Area Chamber Foundation was founded in 1973 to assist the Lakeland Chamber in supporting vital community and education initiatives. Through the generous contributions of several businesses in our community over the past 35 years, the Foundation has been able to award more than $500 million in grants to many not-for-profit organizations. Regretfully, the economic downturn has impacted the Foundation’s investment fund and its ability to disburse grant funding in 2009 and 2010. The Foundation’s board of directors, led by Chairman Timothy F. Campbell (Clark, Campbell, Mawhinney & Lancaster, P.A.) met recently to review its investment fund and made the decision, as a result of the downturn and the resulting inability to award grant requests, not to send out grant applications this year to 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organizations in the Greater Lakeland community. While the Foundation board would prefer to consider and grant awards this fiscal year, the more prudent approach was to suspend the grant process for this fiscal year. The Chamber Foundation is grateful for the tremendous support of Chamber members who continue to make voluntary contributions to the Foundation through their Chamber membership renewal invoice. The Foundation board is hopeful that the we all experience a strong economic rebound and that they will be accepting applications and granting awards soon.

Special thanks

to all member businesses and individuals who have contributed to the Foundation, including those who contributed for the most recent reporting period - 10/1/08 – 5/5/09. The tax-deductible contributions will support the Foundation’s mission to improve Lakeland’s quality of life. Any Lab Test Now Brickyard Div of Custom Coatings & Design, Inc. Buckner Commercial Properties Century 21 A.H. Realty, Inc. Champs Sports Bar & Grille Compton-Peachee Construction, Inc. Edi’s Place, Inc. Fletcher Printing Company Flower Cart Florist Herndon & Associates, LLC Hunt Construction of Central Florida, Inc. Institute of Spanish Communication, Inc. The Ledger Quality Petroleum Corporation Stille Real Estate Tapatio's Restaurante Mexicano, Inc.

Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce Forum For Business Monthly Anu Saxena Chairman of the Board Aaron Bates Managing Editor Volume Information: June 2009, Vol. XIX, No. 6 Kathleen L. Munson Publisher & President Kingston Partners Design


If you are interested in contributing to the Foundation’s efforts, simply mark the Foundation amount on your annual Chamber Investment renewal form. To learn more about the Foundation and its mission, please contact Barbara Bennett at the Chamber,

688-8551, ext. 233.

No. 2

Riverside Bank hosts New Member Reception
The new member reception was held in the lobby of the Riverside Bank located at 4400 South Florida Ave. While Riverside is the presenting sponsor for the entire series, they were glad to help host sponsor Go Minis with a logistics problem. New to Lakeland, and concentrating on placing storage units around the local area, Go Minis had yet to secure an office location! Riverside offered their lobby and this cooperative effort provided a perfect example of Chamber members helping each other. Chamber staff provided new members with an overview of chamber events and programs. New members sharpened their networking skills by sharing their “30 second” commercials with the group and the business relationships that help all businesses prosper began. A special announcement was made: Go Minis has been sold to Jerry Herring and will continue to operate under the same name. The group was positive and upbeat and anxious to use the chamber to develop and grow their business.

Presenting Sponsor Riverside Bank's Chrissy Schaff learns about Cartridge & Toner Zone's business om Bill Masters as Tom Cancellare of Fairfield Inn & Suites looks on.

Brian Bernard, Jamie Hendrix, and new owners Brian and Jerry Herring om Go Minis hosted the event.

Citizens Bank & Trust hosts April’s Business After Hours
A tremendous crowd enjoys networking, eating, and drinking during Business Aer Hours at Citizens Bank & Trust in downtown Lakeland.

The deck at Citizens Bank & Trust was the perfect venue for the Luau's evening festivities! Bank staff were on hand and created a welcoming and fun atmosphere for everyone to enjoy- especially at the beverage dispensers!

Nearly 600 Chamber members and guests sampled wings, ice cream and more as they waited for the announcement of the judges’ careful decision. Attendees were able to sample food & treats from: Beef O’Brady’s, Bubba Que’s BBQ, Dragon Ice Cream, The End Zone, Gator’s Dockside, Kazbor’s, Kerr’s Winghouse, Mojo’s Winghouse, Rita’s Water Ice, & Zohra’s Lakeside Restaurant.

In addition to the food folks, the luau had wonderful support from sponsors! Bernie Little Distributors, Fun Bike Center Motorsports, Focus Magazine all provided support. Party People Celebration Co. dressed the tables, added balloons & created the “luau feel”. Southside Package & Lounge, Signs & Specialties & Image Creations By Billie all provided the last little extras to bring the event together. After much deliberation (and a little math), the judges were happy to announce BubbaQue’s BBQ as the 2009 King of the Wing… Congratulations!

Sandy Serletic accepts the Plaque of Appreciation for Citizens Bank & Trust.

Josh Reeves and Chris Provette of Bubba Ques show off their trophy.

e Judges are ready to begin taste testing wings.
No. 4


Clubs & Organizations
It is time to update our Lakeland Area Guide to Clubs & Organizations. Please contact us no later than August 31, 2009 To ensure your club or organization is represented. Please contact Patty Smith at 863/688-8551 Ext. 221 Or E-mail at

The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce would like to help you out with that by sending your future invoices via E-mail. Not only will it save you time but you would be helping us “Save the Trees.” If your company is interested in receiving the E-mail version of invoices, please complete the information below and return to: Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce PO Box 3607 Attn: Invoices Lakeland, FL 33802-3607 YES! I WANT TO RECEIVE INVOICES BY E-MAIL
Company Name:

Billing Contact Name: Address:

City: E-mail: Phone: Fax:



CPS Investment Advisors sponsors Business And Breakfast
When budgets shrink, marketing is often one of the first items to be eliminated. At the Chamber’s April Business & Breakfast, attendees learned the importance of maintaining a marketing presence throughout tough times as well as free ways to make an impact. box as well as some key ways to market at little to no cost. In addition to using email blasts, attendees were encouraged to establish themselves as experts in their fields, use PR for free publicity, and implement or update customer referral programs. Guests were treated to an excellent breakfast and beautiful scenery at the Grasslands Country Club.

CPS Investment Advisors sponsored the program, titled “Marketing in a Down Economy.” CPS Regional Director of Retirement Services, Brian Mau, moderated a panel discussion and Q&A session with representatives from Madden, a brand identity firm in Lakeland. President Steve Madden, Creative Director Allen Reed, and Creative Account Manager Michelle Ledford shared insights about national and local marketing trends and trendsetters. A recurring theme of the breakfast was the importance of maintaining a marketing presence in order to gain market share. The Madden team presented some great ideas for marketing outside of the proverbial

Pictured above, attendees enjoyed a wonderful breakfast as well as an informative program. Pictured le, panel representatives om Madden: Allen Reed, Michelle Ledford, Steven Madden, and panel moderator Bryan Mau of CPS Investment Advisors, program sponsor.

No. 6

Don Bosko worked for Owens-Corning Fiberglas for 18 years when the company sold the division he was working for in 1990. He decided to try his hand at owning his own business and being his own boss. On August 5, 1991 Don and his family opened his first Beef ‘O’ Brady’s restaurant in South Lakeland. The restaurant went from sales of $420,000 the first year of business to $1,706,000 in 2008. The restaurant is the place where all locals feel at home with the friendly atmosphere and sports theme. Development over the past years was strongly attributed to community involvement. When entering a Bosko owned Beef’s on the walls are numerous awards (Sunrise Award, Retailer of the Year, Founders Award, Golden Spoon) plaques and pictures of teams sponsored by Beef ‘O’ Brady’s. Beef’s has become the meeting place for softball, baseball, football and soccer teams. The business is based on people meeting people with good food and sports are always playing on television.

Small Business of the Month Award presented
A customer will not find a restaurant with more kids and families having great fun and enjoying the sports theme. Mr. Bosko awards hundreds of Certificate of Merit awards to the local schools. Beef’s participate in functions that raise thousands of dollars for Toys for Tots, March of Dimes, Florida Southern College, Boy Scouts, Campfire USA and V.I.S.T.E. The company has grown because of the involvement with the community, churches, schools and the local Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce.
Bosko Family Enterprise d/b/a Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Family Sports Pub Don Bosko & Tim Bosko 4810 South Florida Avenue Lakeland, FL 33813 863/646-9299 863/646-2256 Fax

May winner

Bosko Family Enterprise has now grown to five restaurants under Don Bosko’s leadership in three different counties. Sales have reached $5.5 million and continue to grow. The Bosko Family’s lives have changed tremendously owning the business. “When you’re a small business owner you create your own environment. Your entire attitude relates to the altitude you reach within your goals. We can only be as good as our employees”, reports Don Bosko. The South Lakeland store is managed by son Tim and Andy and

the North Beef’s is managed by son, Bill. They have continued the family tradition to make Beef ‘O’ Brady’s a family place for good food, good sports and a friendly atmosphere. The Bosko children and their families have all worked in the business. Linda, Bill, Cara, Tim and Andy Bosko are the heartbeat of the business. The family has grown and the communities continue to grow with Beef’s. Mr. Bosko is active in numerous groups on the Board of Directors, Campfire USA, Margarita Ball, Beef’s Executive Advisory Board, Leadership Lakeland XX, The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce, Cantor Resurrection Church and named Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Franchisee of the Year. The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce would like to congratulate Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Family Sports Pubs as the Small Business of Month for May.

Don Bosko and Tim Bosko of Beef O’Brady’s accept the May Small Business of Month award om Small Business of the Month Award Committee Members Ginny Allen Houghton (Allen & Company of Florida, Inc.) and Julie DeGeorge (DeGeorge Custom Frames).

No. 8

20+ Years Renewals
1954 - 55 Years Bank of America 1949 - 60 Years Florida Southern College

The Chamber would like to recognize and thank the following businesses for their long-standing support and loyalty.

1964 - 45 Years Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc. 1967 - 42 Years Lunz Prebor Fowler Architects 1977 - 32 Years Crowe Horwath LLP 1980 - 29 Years Executive Cleaners & Launderers Atlantic Filter of Polk County, Inc. 1983 - 26 Years Soul Train Wig & Fashion 1984 - 25 Years The Family Dentist/ Mariela K. Lung-Compton Estates at Carpenters 1985 - 24 Years Bella Vista Manor & Vista Villas Bloodnet USA The Hair Shanty Omnia, Inc.

1986 - 23 Years Daryl A. Johnson, CPA Sylvan Learning Center

1987 - 22 Years Imperial Swan Hotel & Suites 1988 - 21 Years

Preston Craft Hearing Aids 1989 - 20 Years Albe Stamp & Engraving Saunders & Wilhelm

15-Year Renewals
Graphic Systems Installers

10-Year Renewals
ICT Group, Inc. All Creatures Animal Clinic Mitchell Insurance Agency, Inc. AEI Electrical Construction, Inc. Savannah Cottage/ Memory Care Residences Wilhelm Appraisal Company Boone Distributors, Inc.

5-Year Renewals
Oasis Refreshment Systems, Inc. BioLife Plasma Services

e Chamber is proud to welcome 16 new members for April 2009
Through their membership in the Chamber, businesses invest in themselves and their community. We urge to to “Buy Lakeland. It makes good cents!” by doing business with these new Chamber members. For the most up-to-date list of members, visit our on-line Preferred Business Directory at!


1875 Northwood Dr Bartow, FL 33830-9796 (877) 251-2798 Fax: (713) 893-4797 Samuel White Restoration - Emergency Services

APEX Emergency Services

Gold Lady - Gold Buyer
PO Box 7742 Lakeland, FL 33807-7742 (863) 712-3499 Melanie Young Jewelry - Gold Buyer

RSVP of Polk County

5015 S Florida Ave Lakeland, FL 33813-5502 (863) 701-2685 Fax: (863) 701-2767 Gwyndolyn Hughes Banks

Bank of Central Florida

Griffin Lawn Care

Lakeland, FL 33803-4518 (863) 604-6852 Mark Griffin Lawn Maintenance

10857 Park Dr Riverview, FL 33569-5148 (813) 263-6422 Fax: (813) 654-3959 Kathy Chilver Diane Krieger Advertising

Kemworks Technology, Inc.
231 N Kentucky Ave Lakeland, FL 33801-4977 (863) 682-5369 Fax: (866) 863-9490 Marten Walters Engineers

Sunbelt Worksite Marketing, Inc.
P.O. Box 1287 Auburndale, FL 33823-1287 (863) 967-8045 (800) 822-8045 Fax: (863) 967-3848 Spencer Vice Insurance

1720 S Florida Ave Ste 1 Lakeland, FL 33803-2200 (863) 687-7777 Fax: (863) 688-8989 Chuck Brinton Benjamin M. Fairchild Accountants - Certified Public

Brinton Fairchild LLC

Linksters Taproom

Swan Development Advisors, Inc.
PO Box 2097 Lakeland, FL 33806-2097 (863) 616-1615 Fax: (863) 802-9630 Bruce Lyon Consulting Services

4780 S Florida Ave Lakeland, FL 33813-2181 (863) 701-8101 (863) 701-8139 Gianpaolo Marchi Luigi Verilo Restaurants

Ciao Bella

209 E Main St Lakeland, FL 33801-4656 (863) 683-7195 Eric Belvin Lounges

3900 Don Emmerson Dr Ste 101 Lakeland, FL 33811-1263 (863) 647-3911 Fax: (863) 644-4814 Steve Leidigh Aviation

FlightLevel Lakeland, LLC dba Columbia Air Services

4030 S Pipkin Rd Ste 102 Lakeland, FL 33811-1698 (863) 683-2392 Fax: (863) 682-4795 Gretchen Johnson Insurance

Northwestern Mutual Financial Network

PO Box 2685 Lakeland, FL 33806-2685 (863) 603-7843 Fax: (863) 603-7753 Heather Fredericks Reposessing Agency

USA Recovery, Inc.

Pro Care Auto Repair

Warren Tree & Landscape
1204 N Frontage Rd Plant City, FL 33563 (813) 927-1289 Fax: (813) 707-0449 Mike & Lynne Warren Landscaping

405 S Lake Parker Ave Lakeland, FL 33801-5713 (863) 683-6598 Steven Jacklin Automobile/Truck - Repair

No. 10




$5 Chamber Member ~ $15 Non-Member
Please R.S.V.P. by June 10 to Mary Stevenson, 863/688-8551, Ext 232 or E- mail:

Explorations V Children’s Museum includes 3 floors of mind-stretching, kid-powered exhibits featuring art, science, literature, math, health, life skills and cultures from around the world. You’ll be amazed at how much fun learning can be!

109 N. Kentucky Ave. Lakeland, FL 33801 863.687.3869

Explorations V Children’s Museum is a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. All donations are appreciated and tax deductible to the fullest extent by law.
No. 12

During the month of April, our Visitor Information Center assisted hundreds of Lakeland community. Walk-in Visitors..................................354 Relocation Response Mailings................9 Relocation Response (Walk In) ............25 Accommodations...................................2


individuals, answering questions pertaining to Chamber member businesses and the Winter Accommodations .......................0 Visitor Information Mailings .................33 Visitor Center E-mail Inquiries .............194

Wednesday, June 11 Business & Breakfast, 7:30 a.m., Campfire USA Sunshine Council, 2600 Buckingham Ave. Thursday, June 18 Business After Hours, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m., Fantasy of Flight 1400 Broadway Blvd SE, Polk City.


Wednesday, June 10 Government Affairs, 8:00 a.m. BusinessVoice, 9:00 a.m. Tuesday, June 16 EMERGE Lakeland, Steering Committee, 3:45 p.m. Wednesday, June 17 Executive Committee Meeting. 4:00 p.m. Wednesday, June 24 Board of Directors Meeting, Noon Lakeland Yacht and Country Club 929 Lake Hollingsworth Drive


Are you a young professional who wants to network?
Are you a young professional in Lakeland who is looking for more than just a job? Are you looking to network with some of Lakeland’s most respected young professionals? Do you want to give back to the community you live and work in? Are you looking to attend professional development events to enhance your career? EMERGE Lakeland provides all of these opportunities and many more. Visit and learn more about becoming a member. If you are currently an EMERGE member and want to get more involved by serving on a committee, please visit the website. EMERGE Lakeland members attended a panel discussion of Lakeland’s most respected business, government and education leaders on April 21. The panel shared their experiences and wisdom with young professionals who aspire to continue the improvement of the quality of life in Lakeland. The event was held at the Lakeland Yacht & Country Club where members enjoyed refreshments and fun and left with a great appreciation for these leaders willing to help guide our EMERGE members in the right direction. EMERGE would like to thank our panelists for attending and inspiring the group. for philanthropic engagement and career enrichment. Visit to learn more about upcoming events, volunteer opportunities and development and social outings. EMERGE promotes social interaction among young professionals, opportunities You can also click on the EMERGE logo on

No. 14

EMERGE Lakeland members attend panel discussion.

EMERGE Lakeland members attended a panel discussion of Lakeland’s most respected business, government and education leaders on April 21. e panel shared their experiences and wisdom with young professionals who aspire to continue the improvement of the quality of life in Lakeland.

Preparations are underway for next year, and we are in the midst of making decisions for the 2010 Buyer’s Guide. Your feedback is important to us, and we would like to hear from you about what you would like to see in next year’s Buyer’s Guide. So please help us by visiting


Rubber and Accessories, Inc
Nahad (The Assn. for Hose and Accessories) Distribution will honor its first president, Harry “Buzz” Hooper, by presenting him with the George W. Carver award for Outstanding Commitment to Industry Excellence.

Alliance for Independence
Joan Eby, Director of Development, Alliance for Independence , was a recent facilitator for the Non-profit Management Program at USF Polytechnic. Joan’s presentation was Program Development and Marketing.

Baylis & Company PA
Baylis & Company PA’s Community Team recently volunteered their time with Habitat for Humanity. They assisted Habitat for Humanity with the construction of a new house in Lakeland by painting the exterior and insulating the roof.

Bank of Central Florida
Paul Noris, President and CEO of the Bank of Central Florida announced Barbara Lineberger as Senior Vice President/Private Banking Officer in the Downtown Office.

AllSolar Service Company, Inc
Dave Bessette, President of ALLSOLAR announced Dillon Daniels as the newest addition to the longstanding solar service company.

No. 16

The Lakeland Chamber prints business announcements each month as space permits. Please mail your announcements to the Chamber or e-mail:

Premiere Commercial Furniture & Design
Shirley Whitney has joined PCF&D as a sales consultant.

Perpetual Technology Solutions
Diane Palmer has successfully achieved the Citrix Certified Administrator Certification.

Polk Community College
Polk Community College has named Gregory Marshall to be Director of TRIO-Student Support Services, a program designed to help special needs, first-generation college and low income students succeed in the college environment.

Coldwell Banker Commercial Saunders Real Estate
Conservation and Urban Planner, Randy Mathews joins Coldwell Banker Commercial Saunders Real Estate. Dean Saunders Awarded 2008 #1 National Division in Land Pinnacle Award -#1 National Division/ Land

Douglass Screen Printers, Inc.
Douglass Screen Printers, Inc named to Florida’s Top Business List for 2009 This is the 9th annual listing of the Top 100 women-owned businesses in Florida by Lisa Kaiser Hickey awarded the 2009 Alumni Achievement Award by Florida Southern College of Lakeland, Florida on March 13, 2009.

Lakeland Habitat
Lakeland Habitat for Humanity is featured in the April/May National Home Energy magazine for its energy-efficient construction can be affordable, too.

Cipher Integrations
Cipher Integrations is proud to announce the addition of Don Kane to their team as a Network Technician.

Brendan Smith has joined the Qgiv team as the Director of Sales.

Continued on Page 19

The following companies recently celebrated their ribbon cuttings in the month of April. See the photos on our Web site at


4450 Harden Blvd 863/644-7710 •

St. Paul Lutheran School

209 E. Main Street 863/683-7195 •

Linksters Taproom

3644 Innovation Drive 863/646-5789


5015 S Florida Ave 863/701-2685 •

Bank of Central Florida


Special thanks to Mayor Buddy Fletcher, City Commissioner Jim Verplanck and all of the board members and chamber champions who truly make these ceremonies a special event.
No. 18

On the Move
Allen & Company

(Continued om Page 17)

Florida Presbyterian Homes
Florida Presbyterian Homes has hired Tracy Jernigan as the Director of Nursing. Treva Clark has been hired as the Wellness Coordinator and conducts training and classes for the entire campus, including staff members.

Vice President Laura Hawley recently attended the Tulane University's Freeman School of Business 11th annual Burkenroad Reports conference in New Orleans. A team of associates from Allen & Company of Florida, Inc. recently took a trip to the wilderness to serve as camp counselors. The Bethany Center and Camp BraveHeart serves children in Polk, Highlands and Hardee County that have lost a parent or sibling to cancer or traumatic death. Jack C Lee has joined the firm as Vice President of Investment as well as Financial Advisor. Thomas Lee has joined the firm as a Financial Advisor.

CPS Investment Advisors
Chas P. Smith, CPA/PFS, president of CPS Investment Advisors sponsored an Economic Forecast and Stock Market Update at the Lakeland Yacht & Country Club.

BCI Engineers & Scientists, Inc.
Pleased to announce the addition of remedial investigations expert Mr. Brian Burke, CPG to the firm’s GeoEnvironmental & Remediation Services group.

Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Box 3607 • Lakeland, FL 33802-3607



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