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SRQ DAILY Dec 19, 2022

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"We can't show up a couple months before asking African Americans to come out for Democrats."

- Daniel Kuether, Sarasota County Democratic Party

[Politics]  Kuether Elected as Sarasota Democratic Chair
Jacob Ogles, jacob.ogles@srqme.com

Daniel Kuether did not find success running for county commissioner. But he hopes lessons learned on the campaign trail help with a new political role. He won election on Friday as Sarasota County Democratic Party chairman.

Kuether won 85 votes out of 125 cast. The party also elected Vice Chair Barbara Katz, At Large members Rita Major-Hallerdin and Brian Goncola, Secretary Louise Machinist and Treasurer Rose La Chapelle.

The new chair promised to build on those things the local party does well, like a mail vote effort that’s become a model for parties statewide. But after a year of bruising losses, he stressed a desire to address numerous areas where Democrats have fallen short.

“What we need to do is get much more involved in the community where we seem to be losing conversations locally,” he said. “We need to make sure to partner in the community in other nonpartisan conversations.”

Kuether feels the party infrastructure in Sarasota remains outdated, and the day-to-day operations for the party year-round need a refresh. The party’s shortcomings have been particularly concerning at a time when the Republican Party of Florida Chairman, Joe Gruters, operates in Sarasota and brings a level of sophistication and attention from GOP leaders on local political conversations.

This was a tough year for Democrats throughout the state, as Gov. Ron DeSantis won re-election by 19 percentage points, more than any GOP Governor ever in Florida. The top-of-the-ticket success also seemed to lead to success for Republicans all the way down the ballot.

Perhaps most frustrating to local Democrats was a District 2 County Commission race, where Democrat Fredd Atkins lost to Republican Mark Smith by just 373 votes out of nearly 38,000 cast. Kuether believes that loss was the result of low turnout in Black communities in North Sarasota, something he blames on the local party only engaging with voters there during get-out-the-vote efforts immediately preceding elections.

“We can’t show up a couple months before asking African Americans to come out for Democrats,” he said. “It’s about being an intrinsic part of neighborhoods and communities, and really being there for the voters.”

His own county commission race, which he lost to Republican Joe Nuender by 8,886 votes out of more than 47,000, was more about an insurmountable voter registration gap. But Kuether sees ways Democrats can better engage even in districts where the party is disadvantaged. He heard many voters complain about the county commission favoring developers over residents, and said parties need to educate voters on the way the existing political system operates.

“I do think a lot of headway can be made, but we need to be really focused on having the right conversations continually through the year, and need to make the tie and connection of who people are voting for and the resulting decisions coming down from the county commission as a result,” he said.

Kuether said many voters this year cast a straight Republican ticket. Candidates cannot be afraid to speak to conservative voters, however, about specific areas and offices where their own interests may not align with leaders of their party.

Of note, Kuether is the first openly gay person elected to chair a Sarasota County major party. That’s historically important, but he stresses more strongly that he’s 33 and still working full time. That makes him part of a few demographics growing in Sarasota but that remain under-represented at the polls. Electing younger voices for party leadership could be key yo changing that.

“It’s much easier for someone in their early 30s to have a conversation talking to a college student in their early 20s, rather than having retirees try and reach people at New College,” he said. 

Image courtesy Daniel Kuether.

[In Conversation]  In Conversation with Ryan Thompson, Vice President, J.L Bainbridge

In the December 2022 edition of SRQ Magazine, we interviewed Ryan Thompson, Vice President, J.L Bainbridge as part of our In Conversation feature on aging gracefully. Below is an excerpt published in the magazine in which he shares his insights with SRQ readers.

Ryan, as a relatively new father, how has the experience changed the way you think about planning that you do?

I'm not sure that it does. The biggest realization in being a new father was that almost everything my parents told me was right. But I never wanted to believe them, which is kind of hilarious. But the thing that I would say to someone who might walk into my office is that it's okay to ask for help. There's all kinds of statistics out there that say that people that work with an advisor end up better just because of some of the things we talked about from the very onset, they're just not aware of some of the risks and pitfalls that are out there to encounter. And rather than learning the hard way, why not have someone that can raise a flag and say, hey, you should be thinking about this. Everything starts with the plan and failing to plan is planning to fail, so to speak. 

To read the full article, click here.

[Shareholders]  Kerkering Barberio Announces New Shareholders

Kerkering, Barberio & Co., Certified Public Accountants, is pleased to announce that current Managers, Erin Hentrich, Kathleen Martin, and Ashley Salter, will be admitted as Shareholders, effective January 2023. Erin joined the firm in 2011 and specializes in healthcare accounting and client advisory services (CAS). Kathleen joined KB in 2013 and specializes in CAS. Ashley joined the firm in 2007 and specializes in healthcare accounting and professional service groups. In addition, all three provide individual and business tax planning and preparation services. “Erin, Kathleen, and Ashley are tremendous assets to the firm. They are greatly admired for their leadership in the community, mentorship of staff, and delivery of excellent service to clients. We are very proud to have all of them be a part of our growth and progression of the firm,” said Rob Lane, Managing Shareholder. 

To learn more click here.

[Airport News]  SRQ Passenger Numbers for November 2022

In November 359,488 passengers traveled through the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport. This is a 12% increase as compared to November 2021. Passengers traveling through the airport year-to-date totaled 3,469,831; a 23% increase compared to 2021 year-to-date passengers. The 12-month activity thru November 2022 totals 3,817,099 passengers which is a 30% increase compared to 2,935,389 passengers for the 12 months thru November 2021. “This November we had more passenger travel through SRQ than any November in the history of the airport. Future airline flight schedules indicate record breaking months between now and next summer and we expect to end the calendar year with over 3.8 million passengers served. With Southwest Airlines recently adding Buffalo, NY and Providence, RI for March and April, our 11 airlines will now provide nonstop flights to 56 destinations from SRQ,” stated Rick Piccolo, President, and CEO of the Sarasota Bradenton International Airport. 

[Recognition]  PGT Innovations Wins 2022 Window + Door Award

PGT Innovations (NYSE: PGTI), a leading manufacturer of premium windows, doors, and garage doors, was recently named a winner in the 2022 Window + Door Awards by Window + Door Magazine. The annual awards program highlights the best products in the residential fenestration industry. As the award recipient for Most Innovative Support/Marketing Program, PGT Innovations was recognized for its LeadMatch program, which debuted in 2020 and released an update with exciting new features the following year. Through LeadMatch, PGTI provides five different ways for homeowners and industry professionals to connect with dealers, including directions, quotes, phone calls, messages, and live chat, then compiles and organizes the customer data into one system for dealers to access and manage. This proprietary sales tool and customer relationship management system was designed specifically for the fenestration industry and includes features defined by feedback from dealers. To determine the winners of the 2022 Window + Door Awards, a panel of judges representing all segments of the residential fenestration industry reviewed nominations and selected winners based on a specific set of criteria for each category. Judges cast their ballots for the products, processes, programs, and machines they deemed to have a substantial impact on the advancement of the industry. Window + Door judges reported that LeadMatch is a great use of technology in order to streamline processes, allows for a wider net to be cast to obtain clients, mobile productivity has been well designed, and the program offers an efficient and flexible process. PGTI will be featured in Window + Door Weekly, on WindowandDoor.com and across Window + Door’s various social media platforms. 

[Recognition]  SMH Among World’s ‘Most Wired’ Hospitals

The last three years have been a period of marked disruption and challenge for healthcare organizations. As they rebound from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, CHIME’s 2022 Most Wired survey is spotlighting hospitals with digital health systems that promote safer care and more secure hospital systems. Once again, Sarasota Memorial has been named by the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) to its global list of “Most Wired” hospitals for 2022. Some of the advanced technologies used by SMH include mobile applications and telehealth solutions, price-transparency and cost-analysis tools, secure digital access to data at the point of care, and security technology to safeguard clinical systems, protected health information and business operations. CHIME conducts the annual survey to identify and recognize the adoption of best practices in information technology by healthcare provider organizations, with the goal of improving patient safety and outcomes by driving change in healthcare IT. This year, the survey grew by 20%, despite the pandemic, and represents over 38,000 facilities from 10 countries. 

To learn more click here.

[Safe Children Coalition]  Safe Children Coalition presents 2023 Giving Breakfast

On Thursday, March 23, 2023, Safe Children Coalition will present its inaugural Giving Breakfast, during which four “Champions for Children” will be honored for their contributions to caring for children in our community. The 2023 honorees are: Michele Grimes, attorney, Williams Parker Attorneys at Law; Rick Oswald, senior vice president, CMSA Architects; and Bobbie and Floyd Price, Guardian Angels of SW Florida.The event takes place from 8-9:30 a.m. at Michael’s On East (1212 East Avenue S., Sarasota). Honoree Sponsors for the event include Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation, Clifford M. Scholz Architects, Williams Parker Attorneys At Law, Gulf Coast Community Foundation, and Tandem Construction. 

Safe Children Coalition is the lead agency for community-based care for Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto counties (Circuit 12), providing foster care, adoption, and prevention and diversion programs; nearly 9,300 children received services this year. Funds raised at the event will support these programs as well as youth prevention services, Schoolhouse Link (for children who are homeless or unaccompanied), a Youth Shelter, and more. Sponsorships of $500-$15,000 are available for the 2023 Giving Breakfast. For questions or more information, contact Jacqueline House, Safe Children Coalition’s vice president of communications and community engagement: jhouse@sccfl.org or 941-225-6166. 

Click Here To Learn More

[Recognition]  RE/MAX Names Top Producers for the Third Quarter of 2022

RE/MAX Alliance Group, the #1 RE/MAX in Florida, is proud to recognize associates and teams who placed among the top RE/MAX producers in the United States and worldwide from January to September 2022. Among the Top 100 individual commercial agents, Stan Rutstein in the Bradenton office ranked #13 in the United States and #32 worldwide; and Ivan J. Gould PA in the Sarasota office ranked #27 in the United States and #67 worldwide. Among the Top 25 medium commercial teams in the United States (three to nine members), Ramos Property Group in Tampa ranked #11. Among the Top 50 small residential teams (two members), the Travis Group in the Bradenton office ranked #11 in the United States and #29 worldwide, and the Glenn Brown Team in the Sarasota office ranked #41 in the United States. Among the Top 50 medium residential teams in the United States (three to nine members), the Stiver First International Team in the Englewood office ranked #25 and the Brewer Team in the Sarasota office ranked #49. Among the Top 100 teams in the United States for residential and commercial sales combined, the Stiver First International Team ranked #63.


Pictured: Stan Rutstein, Ivan Gould, James Ramos, Christy and Jay Travis, Glenn Brown, Carla Stiver, Lee Brewer. Photo courtesy of RE/MAX Alliance Group.

[35 Under 35]  35 Under 35 Honoree - Arianne Kopacz at Children First

Meet the region's 35 Under 35 Awards Honorees for the 2022 program produced by SRQ Magazine to recognize young professionals who are taking a leadership position at their company and in the community. Learn more about Arianne Kopacz, Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist at Children First!


LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR ARIANNE KOPACZ serves as an Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist for Children First, the exclusive provider of Head Start and Early Head Start services in Sarasota County. In her role, Ms. Kopacz supports a program-wide culture promoting the mental health and social and emotional well-being of children and families. Previously she worked as a Family Advocate for the agency, supporting parents and caregivers in setting and meeting financial, educational, and occupational goals to strengthen overall family well-being. Ms. Kopacz holds multiple licenses and certifications such as Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Trust-Based Relational Intervention Caregiver, and Circle of Security Parenting Facilitator. She is also rostered in child parent psychotherapy. She is a member of several community organizations including Zero to Three, the Florida Association of Infant Mental Health, and the Florida Mental Health Counselor Association. Ms. Kopacz holds an MA in Clinical Psychology from the University of Central Florida. 

To read the full article, click here.

[Feature]  4WALLS
4WALLS | A visionary design competition.

The biannual competition celebrates the year's most impressive buildings, both public and private. Judges from around the country jury buildings and planned designs submitted by builders, architects, and engineers to celebrate the 4WALLS Visionary Design Awards in Platinum, Gold, and Silver. See this year's finalists through the link, on our social medias, or in the December Edition!

Read Here!

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Asolo Repertory Theatre: Cabaret , November 16 – December 31, Varied

Willkommen to Kander and Ebb’s iconic CABARET, which transports us to 1939 Berlin and the dynamic and pleasure-filled Kit Kat Klub. As a dark shadow falls over the city and the power of the Third Reich begins to mount, the Klub’s performers and patrons must decide if they’ll wake up to the evil on their doorsteps or continue to escape to the alluring fantasy world of the cabaret. Since its debut in 1967, this classic musical has won countless awards, including the Tony Awards® for Best Musical, Best Score, and Best Revival of a Musical. Packed with vibrant and beloved songs like “Willkommen,” “Maybe This Time,” “Money,” “Don’t Tell Mama,” and, of course, “Cabaret,” this timely masterwork will burst to life on stage under the direction of Broadway and Asolo Rep favorite Josh Rhodes. 

Asolo Repertory Theatre

[SOON]  MUSEUM: Walking Tours at The Ringling's Arboretum Available Now Through May 2023 , November 26 – May 29, 12:00 PM

This walking tour led by volunteer guides will introduce you to interesting botanical specimens on the estate while providing a historic overview of the development of the estate. The Ringling Arboretum has been accredited at Level II through ArbNet and there are over 2350 trees within the arboretum representing native, exotic, historical, and culturally significant trees. Garden Tours are available Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays and take place entirely outdoors. It is 90 minutes in length and covers approximately 1 mile. We encourage visitors to bring bottled water, and wear appropriate footwear, preferably closed-toe, sunblock, and hats. There will be a maximum of 10 participants per tour. Tours are subject to weather conditions. Please check it at the Visitors Pavilion prior to your tour. Tickets will be available 30 days prior to each tour.

[SOON]  FOOD: Make Your Christmas Feast Easy and Delicious! , December 6 – December 25

Holiday roast pre orders are now open! You can now order everything you need for your holiday feast! Tenderloin, Wagyu and Rib Roasts, Tomahawks, Turkeys, six home made take and bake side items, sauces and Der Dutchman Pies! Also featuring our Warface Marinated Tenderloin Roast!

[SOON]  MUSIC: Sarasota Concert Association announces Free Music Matinees , January 4 – April 19, 12:00 PM

The Sarasota Concert Association announces its 2023 Music Matinees concert series. These four free noon-time concerts showcase exceptional regional musicians performing a variety of musical styles, including classical and folk music. Scheduled this season: Passerine; Wednesday, January 4 at noon. With inventive vocal harmonies and song-writing skills, supported by the sounds of acoustic strings, Passerine offers a fresh take on traditional folk and bluegrass music, as well as a repertoire of original songs that range from ballads to contemporary Americana. Duo Pianists Michael Baron and Priscila Navarro; Wednesday, February 22 at noon; The Baron-Navarro Piano Duo performs a wide range of music, from classical to popular, for two pianos and piano four–hands with electric energy and melting lyricism. Their New York City debut as a piano duo at Carnegie Hall in March of 2022 was sold out and met with critical acclaim. Soprano Hein Jung and pianist Gregorios Zamparas; Friday, March 17 at noon Soprano Hein Jung has performed in recitals and with opera companies in major cities throughout the U.S, Italy and South Korea. She will be accompanied by pianist Gregorios Zamparas who has been praised for his versatility as a recitalist, orchestra soloist and chamber musician throughout the U.S. and Europe. Cellist Natalie Helm and Pianist Jesse Martins; Wednesday, April 19 at noon Principal Cellist of the Sarasota Orchestra, Natalie Helm is a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral musician, and educator. For this performance she will collaborate with pianist Jesse Martins, who also serves as conductor and vocal coach with the Sarasota Opera. The concerts are free but pre-registration is required and available 30 days before each concert at SCAsarasota.org. Performances take place at David Cohen Hall in the Beatrice Friedman Symphony Center, 709 N. Tamiami Trail. Visit www.SCAsarasota.org or call the box office at 941-966-6161.

[SOON]  GRAB BAG: Golf Tournament Raises Funds for Domestic and Sexual Violence Survivors , January 16 – February 7, 11:00 AM

Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) is hosting its annual golf tournament, Scramble for SPARCC, at the Laurel Oak Country Club on Monday, January 16, 2023. With the support of sponsors, community donations and golfers, this tournament raises funds to help provide life-saving, free and confidential programs and services for survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Entry fee is $185.00 per person and includes green fees, individual carts, happy hour light bites, beverages (cash bar available) and player awards. Registration opens at 11:00 AM with a shotgun start at 12:30 PM to kick off the 18-hole scramble. In addition to the golf tournament, there is also a closet to the pin contest, closest to the line contest, golf ball launcher, 50/50 chance drawing, and awards celebration. Co-Chairs for this event are Sandy Fulkerson and Bonnie VanOverbeke.

[SOON]  GALLERY: Elements by Cheryl Moody to be Featured at Art Uptown Gallery in February , January 27 – February 23

From January 27, 2023 to February 23, Art Uptown Gallery will exhibit Elements by Cheryl Moody. Cheryl loves being outdoors and painting subjects in oils that spark her interest, whether it's the way light filters through leaves, reflects on water, creates patterns of color in the landscape, or how palm fronds twist in the wind. Cheryl enjoys hearing from people saying they could “ feel the wind blowing” or “smell the salt air,” and knowing that they have been transported to her special places. Meet the artist at the gallery on Saturday, January 28 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and at the monthly First Friday, 6 p.m. public reception on February 3. Art Uptown Gallery welcomes patrons and friends at 1367 Main Street daily where the diverse art works of regional, award-winning artists are exhibited. Telephone 941-955-5409 or visit www.artuptown.com for hours and further information.

[SOON]  PERFORMANCE: Sarasota Opera: Don Giovanni , February 25 – March 25, Varied

Don Giovanni is an Opera in two acts. Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Libretto by Lorenzo da Ponte. Mozart’s most famous opera is a comic and tragic masterpiece. Set in 17th century Spain, this tale of obsession, betrayal, crime, and retribution centers around the infamous lover Don Juan, who leaves a path of broken hearts wherever he goes. Sung in Italian with English Translations in English. February 25th-March 25th. For tickets visit sarasotaopera.org, Ph. +1 941 328 1300, 61 N Pineapple Ave Sarasota, FL 34236

Sarasota Opera , 61 N Pineapple Ave. Sarasota, FL 34236

[SOON]  THEATER: Urbanite Theatre: That Must Be The Entrance To Heaven , June 9 – July 9

THAT MUST BE THE ENTRANCE TO HEAVEN by Franky D. Gonzalez. A World Premiere. June 9 - July 9, 2023. Urbanite Theatre. Glory. Survival. Legacy. Citizenship. Four Latino boxers all chase a world title to achieve their personal versions of heaven. But to get there, they must battle each other, their own battered bodies, and the universe itself. All four men walk the line between life and death in this poignant, poetic collision of combat and cosmos. For tickets and info contact - phone (941) 321-1397, email info@urbanitetheatre.com, website www.urbanitetheatre.com.

Urbanite Theatre , 1487 2nd Street Sarasota FL, 34236

[SOON]  : The Ringling - A Decade of Collecting , October 22 – January 22, Varied

A Decade of Collecting brings together a survey of artworks acquired for the permanent collection over the past eleven years. As the State Art Museum of Florida and a division of Florida State University, The Ringling’s collections are constantly expanding to provide our state and local community with access to current contemporary works in all media and thoughtful additions to our historic collections. Though the core of the collection has always been the works acquired by John and Mable Ringling, the museum’s holdings have been expanding ever since the State of Florida took full possession of the bequest in 1946. In the early years, these additions were mainly in pre-1800 European art and circus-related material, but over the second half of the 20th century, directors and curators also began acquiring works by modern and contemporary artists. A Decade of Collecting presents a unique snapshot of how The Ringling’s collection continues to evolve, allowing us to tell new stories of the past, present, and future. Visit ringling.org to plan your visit.

Museum of Art Searing Galleries

[SOON]  BUSINESS: Festive Food and Drink at the Ritz Carlton , December 31 – January 1

Festive Food & Drink This year, the resort will be bringing back its lavish Grand Ballroom festive dining experiences – a guest and local favorite. The experiences will kick off with a Christmas Day Brunch featuring a traditional feast curated by the resort’s master chefs. Followed by an exquisite Christmas Grand Ballroom Brunch featuring chef-attended action stations. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinners are also available for guest reservations at Jack Dusty and Ridley’s Porch, both serving seasonally themed menus. In the lobby, overnight guests can indulge in daily surprise and delight experiences including culinary creations from the resort’s talented chefs, après-sun hand-shaved ice-cold snow cones, decadent holiday-inspired shooters, morning fresh squeezed juices, and more. Club Lounge guests will enjoy exclusive culinary programming and offerings like Autumn Sangria, cookie decorating and hot cocoa, twelve-days of Christmas champagne pairings, and more.

SRQ Media Group

SRQ DAILY is produced by SRQ | The Magazine. Note: The views and opinions expressed in the Saturday Perspectives Edition and in the Letters department of SRQ DAILY are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by SRQ Media. Senior Editor Jacob Ogles edits the Saturday Perspective Edition, Letters and Guest Contributor columns.In the CocoTele department, SRQ DAILY is providing excerpts from news releases as a public service. Reference to any specific product or entity does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by SRQ DAILY. The views expressed by individuals are their own and their appearance in this section does not imply an endorsement of them or any entity they represent. For rates on SRQ DAILY banner advertising and sponsored content opportunities, please contact Ashley Ryan Cannon at 941-365-7702 x211 or via email

Copyright © 2024 by SRQ Media Group, 331 South Pineapple Avenue, Sarasota, FL 34236.
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