2018 Leadership Okaloosa Graduates 42 Community Leaders

NICEVILLE, FL– Northwest Florida State College, in partnership with the Crestview, Destin, Niceville Valparaiso and the Fort Walton Beach Chambers of Commerce, honored 42 Okaloosa County business professionals during a graduation celebration on May 17 at the Emerald Grande to celebrate their completion of the 2017-2018 Leadership Okaloosa program.  Special thanks to the Costa Leadership Institute endowment for providing scholarship support to the Leadership Okaloosa program.

The 2018 Leadership Okaloosa graduates include:

  • Andrew Ayres, Gulf Power Company
  • Ashley Bauchwitz, The Arc of the Emerald Coast
  • Paul Bernier, Emerald Grande
  • Andrew Bowman, Northwest Florida State College
  • Jay Boxberger, Coldwell Banker
  • Mary Broyles, Okaloosa Gas District
  • Bradley Butler, Gulf Power Company
  • Sandra Carroll, Jenny Craig
  • Jerry Ann Chancellor, Northwest Florida State College
  • Brandy Crawford, Okaloosa County Tax Collector
  • Robert Crosby, Reliance Test and Technology
  • Terry Davis, Okaloosa Gas District
  • Lauren Day, Reliance Test and Technology
  • Jodi Gates, Okaloosa County Clerk of Courts
  • William Griffith, Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office
  • Annie Harris-Sutera, CCB Community Bank
  • Patrick Henley, Sport Clips
  • Scott Hohn, Trinity United Methodist Church
  • Jessica Johnsey, Destin Commons
  • Katherine Kiser, Rocky Bayou Christian School
  • Jennifer Kraus, Bit Wizards
  • Anthony Lanier, Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Coast
  • Emily Little, Fort Walton Beach Medical Center
  • Crystal Mayes, Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Coast
  • Shirley McAfee, Coastal Bank and Trust
  • Levi McNeely, CHELCO
  • John Merchant, Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office
  • Rick Owen, United Way Okaloosa-Walton
  • LaKesha Powell, Rocky Bayou Christian School
  • Joseph Ream, South Walton Utility Company, Inc.
  • Holly Riches, Rocky Bayou Christian School
  • Patricia Scanlon, Okaloosa Gas
  • Anne Shaffield, Career Source Okaloosa Walton
  • Theresa Shoubaki, Okaloosa County Tax Collector
  • Cheron Sincarenco, Okaloosa County Tax Collector
  • Amy Slaman, Beggs and Lane, RLLP
  • Oxana Solovieva, OxanaSol Real Estate
  • Kimberly Stevens, Wal-Mart
  • Brett Stuart, Taylor Allen Properties
  • Erin Thatcher, The Arc of the Emerald Coast
  • Jennifer Via, Early Learning Coalition
  • Thressa Wilcox, Okaloosa County Clerk of Circuit Court

“This esteemed program is essential for our progression as a community,” says Dr. Devin Stephenson, President. “We’re proud to partner with our local chambers of commerce to provide professional development opportunities to business professionals throughout the region.”

Applications are now being accepted for the 2018-2019 Leadership Okaloosa program. The nine-month program is designed to enhance the participant’s network and leadership skills, offering 25 hours of leadership development training and also providing tours of Okaloosa County. The class meets once a month from September to May, during which participants receive classroom training from an expert instructor and are given opportunities to interact with various key community leaders throughout the process.  A highlight of the program is a two-day trip to Tallahassee for the Legislative Day meetings.  Tours of Okaloosa County include Destin, Fort Walton Beach, Crestview, Niceville, Valparaiso, Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport, Hurlburt Field and Eglin Air Force Base, which provide participants with an understanding of the community.  Additionally, each participant takes part in a group project with a focus on city and county government.  Group projects offer an opportunity to demonstrate public speaking, presentation, time management and team building skills learned throughout the program. Another important aspect of Leadership Okaloosa is the networking opportunities with other current and emerging community leaders.

Tuition for the Leadership Okaloosa program is $950 and applications are due by August 3. Applications are available online at www.nwfsc.edu or by calling (850) 729-5253 or emailing leadership@nwfsc.edu.

Photo: Leadership Okaloosa graduates (Not pictured: Ashley Bauchwitz, Bradley Butler, Terry Davis, John Merchant, Rick Owen, Amy Slaman, Oxana Solovieva, Thressa Wilcox)

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