Monthly Archives: December 2021

Board-certified family medicine physician joins Cleveland Clinic Martin Health

Board-certified family medicine physician joins Cleveland Clinic Martin Health

 

Board-certified family medicine physician Jenny Berezanskaya, DO has joined Cleveland Clinic Martin Health. Dr. Berezanskaya is board-certified in both sports medicine and family medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine, as well as family medicine by the American Osteopathic Board of Family Medicine.
 
Dr. Berezanskaya is skilled in ultrasound-guided procedures, including joint injections and lavage. She is also trained in osteopathic manipulative medicine and Botox injections for treatment of migraines.
 
Dr. Berezanskaya is now accepting new patients at the Martin Health location in St. Lucie West, 1095 NW St. Lucie West Blvd., Port St. Lucie. Patients may call 772.785.5581 to request an appointment, or they may also do so online at martinhealth.org/primarycare.
 
Dr. Berezanskaya earned her Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from New York College of Osteopathic Medicine. She completed the Family Medicine Residency program at Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey. She completed the Sports Medicine Fellowship program at University of Miami Sports Medicine Institute.
 
About Cleveland Clinic Martin Health
Cleveland Clinic Martin Health is part of the Cleveland Clinic Florida region. It features three hospitals with 521 total beds, a free-standing emergency center, and numerous outpatient centers and clinics across Martin and St. Lucie counties on Florida’s east coast. Cleveland Clinic Martin Health offers preventive, primary and acute hospital care, as well as cancer care, a heart center, wellness and rehabilitation services, and much more. Learn more at clevelandclinic.org/martinhealth.
Dec. 27, 2021|

Catch the Wave of Hope names new Director

Catch the Wave of Hope names new Director

Photo provided by Catch the Wave of Hope
Sarah Marie Henry, Community Development Director, CWH

The Board of Directors of Catch the Wave of Hope (CWH) has announced the appointment of Sarah Marie Henry, BSW, as Community Development Director.

Henry is a Certified Child Welfare Licensing Professional in the State of Florida, as well as a Certified CSEC (Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children) trainer. Most recently, she was Foster Care Supervisor for 4KIDS of South Florida.

She has a B.A. from Palm Beach Atlantic University, with a major in Christian Social Ministry (Social Work). Henry has certifications in Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and as a Child Welfare Licensing Professional Certification.

With more than seven years’ experience in the fields of non-profit, sales, child welfare, missions, advocacy and leadership, Henry is uniquely qualified to help human trafficking survivors.

Catch the Wave of Hope is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit working locally to prevent sex trafficking of children through awareness, education, restoration and legislation.

Established in 2016, CWH works locally to prevent sex trafficking of children through awareness, education, restoration and legislation.

Under the leadership of Henry and the board, a new initiative has been announced by the organization.

Kelly Laurine, board chair, says “One of the areas of focus we plan to have in 2022 is helping train foster parents to identify signs of trafficking. Sarah’s unique experience working with both trafficking survivors and in the foster care community will help us design and implement this important initiative to protect vulnerable children in our community.”

Dec. 27, 2021|

United Way Earns 4 Star Rating

United Way of Indian River County Earns Coveted 4-Star Rating from Charity Navigator and GuideStar’s Highest Seal of Transparency

 

United Way

United Way of Indian River County earned a 2021 Platinum Seal of Transparency, the highest level of recognition offered by GuideStar, the world’s largest source for nonprofit information, as well as a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator for strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency. This is the seventh consecutive time that UWIRC has earned this top distinction from Charity Navigator. 
 
“United Way of Indian River County’s exceptional 4-star rating sets it apart from its peers and demonstrates its trustworthiness to the public,” according to Michael Thatcher, President & CEO of Charity Navigator. “Only a quarter of charities rated by Charity Navigator receive the distinction of our 4-star rating. This adds UWIRC to a distinguished group of charities working to overcome our world’s most pressing challenges.”
 
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, United Way raised, leveraged, and distributed more than $5.2 million for relief and recovery, in addition to annual allocations to nonprofit partners. Over $1.4 million came from donations through the COVID-19 Community Response Fund, then federal funding became available and UWIRC received an allocation of $3.8 million from Indian River County to serve as a conduit for local organizations addressing critical needs.
 
“We are committed to demonstrating up-to-date metrics with our partners,” said Meredith Egan, Chief Executive Officer. “Our donors can trust that we are a financially responsible, ethical charity and will be good stewards of the dollars raised in our community.”
 
United Way of Indian River County’s rating and other information about charitable giving are available free of charge on www.charitynavigator.org. More detailed information about United Way of Indian River County’s rating is available to Charity Navigator site visitors who become registered users, another free service.
 
 
About United Way of Indian River County
 
United Way of Indian River County (UWIRC) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every community member. United Way works with local programs to provide resources to individuals and families in crisis today while working year-round to improve community conditions and create lasting solutions. We are effectively building a strong foundation and improving lives by mobilizing the caring power of our community. For more information about your local United Way, please call (772) 567-8900 or visit our website, UnitedWayIRC.org.  
 

About GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles

The GuideStar database contains a profile for every tax-exempt nonprofit registered with the IRS. GuideStar encourages every nonprofit to claim and update its profile at no cost to the organization. Updating allows nonprofits to share a wealth of up-to-date information with more than 10 million people who visit GuideStar to learn more about nonprofit organizations each year. Updating also allows nonprofits to share information with the more than 200 philanthropic websites that are powered by GuideStar data.

GuideStar, guidestar.org, is the world’s largest source for nonprofit information, connecting people and organizations with data on 2.7 million current and formerly IRS-recognized nonprofits. Each year, more than 10 million people, including donors, nonprofit leaders, government officials, academic researchers, and the media use GuideStar data to make intelligent decisions about the social sector. GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles are populated with information directly from nonprofits, the IRS, and other partners in the nonprofit sector. The Seal Levels, acknowledged as symbols of transparency in the nonprofit sector, are earned by nonprofits providing specific information to its profile.

About Charity Navigator 
 
Charity Navigator, www.charitynavigator.org, is the largest charity evaluator in America and its website attracts more visitors than all other charity rating groups combined. The organization helps guide intelligent giving by evaluating the Financial Health and Accountability & Transparency of more than 8,000 charities. Charity Navigator accepts no advertising or donations from the organizations it evaluates, ensuring unbiased evaluations, nor does it charge the public for this trusted data. As a result, Charity Navigator, a 501 (c) (3) public charity itself, depends on support from individuals, corporations and foundations that believe it provides a much-needed service to America's charitable givers. Charity Navigator, can be reached directly by telephone at (201) 818-1288, or by mail at 139 Harristown Road, Suite 101, Glen Rock, N.J., 07452.
Dec. 20, 2021|

Youth Guidance Receives New Roof from John’s Island Foundation, Individual Donors

Youth Guidance Receives New Roof from John's Island Foundation, Individual Donors

 

Phil Barnes, Executive Director, and Marcello Ferrari with Rhyne Roofing and Restoration on the Youth Guidance roof.

Youth Guidance Mentoring Academy has a new roof just in time for the new year thanks to the generosity of the local community. Funding for the roof replacement was provided by a generous $75,000 grant from the John’s Island Foundation, a matching donation from Jeff and Shari Wampler, Mary Lewisy, and additional support from individual donors.

The Youth Guidance building, located at 1028 20th Place, was constructed in 1961. It originally served as Vero Beach’s public library. Youth Guidance purchased the building from Indian River County in 2017.

 

“There’s a lot happening under our roof – every day, we provide life skills, vocational training, tutoring, and healthy meals for children living in Indian River County,” said Youth Guidance Executive Director Phil Barnes. “Our roof was in dire need of replacement after years of withstanding severe weather and rain. The new roof will help ensure the safety of our children and allow us to launch into our capital campaign.”

 

Youth Guidance is currently raising funds to completely renovate the interior of its 8,600 square-foot facility. The new plans have been drafted by a local architect and include a workshop for trades programs, a commercial kitchen for culinary arts, dining room, technology lab, library, and multipurpose room.

 

“I can’t tell you how great it is to have a brand-new roof over our heads,” Barnes said. “This is going to be a game-changer for our kids and our organization.”

 

Youth Guidance Mentoring Academy is dedicated to enriching the lives of Indian River County youth through mentoring relationships that inspire trust, self-esteem, and positive futures. Founded in 1973, Youth Guidance provides daily meals as well as one-on-one and group mentoring programs to children and young adults ages 5-24 with limited resources.

After school, students complete their homework under the supervision of trained Youth Guidance staff. Then they participate in group mentoring programs that include vocational training, life skills, and STEAM (Science, technology, engineering, arts, and math). All programs and meals are provided free of charge thanks to the generosity of the local community.

If you are interested in learning more about Youth Guidance, please call 772.492.3933, or visit www.youthguidanceprogram.org.

 

Rhyne Roofing and Restoration placing material on the Youth Guidance roof.

Dec. 20, 2021|

FPL In Support of Diversity in STEM

FPL In Support of Diversity in STEM

New Scholarship to Remove Financial Barriers for Black Students Seeking Associate Degrees 

 

FPL STEM Scholars

 

Indian River State College (IRSC) has received an $800,000 award from Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) to support diversity in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) careers. The funds will establish the Florida Power & Light Company Endowed Scholarship for Black students seeking Associate in Science degrees at IRSC in the areas of Electrical Power Technology (ICE specialization), Computer Information Technology and Electronics Engineering Technology (such as robotics-manufacturing and laser-photonics specializations).  
 
FPL will fund the endowed scholarship over four years; $200,000 is available for the 2022–2023 academic year. Scholarship funds may cover tuition, books, and supplies or be used to enroll in courses that provide additional certifications such as OSHA or CPR while attending IRSC. New and returning IRSC students may begin applying for the awards now by logging into their MyPioneerPortal account. 
 
“IRSC’s longstanding partnership with Florida Power & Light centers around making a positive impact on people’s lives,” says Michael Hageloh, IRSC interim vice president for institutional advancement. “Over the years, we have collaborated on programs that build essential workforce skills and put students into great paying jobs. FPL’s most recent commitment moves us closer to achieving another mutual goal—addressing racial opportunity gaps in STEM fields—and for that, we are immensely grateful.” 
 
According to an April 2021 report from the Pew Research Center, Black workers comprise 11% of all employed adults but account for only 9% of adults employed in STEM occupations. Their share is lower in some STEM job clusters, including just 5% in engineering jobs. Further, Pew states that there has been no change in the share of Black workers in STEM jobs since 2016.  
 
FPL’s commitment to IRSC will help remove financial barriers that may prevent Black students from entering these fields. 
 
“We are focused on breaking down barriers to opportunity by investing in STEM programs that empower our next generation of leaders. We are proud to energize IRSC’s dynamic STEM initiatives and provide support for students with this grant,” said Pamela Rauch, vice president of external affairs and economic development for FPL. “The Florida Power & Light Company Endowed Scholarship for Black students will help inspire these innovators to obtain an Associate of Science degree—a strong foundation for landing a high-paying job in the technology field.”  
 
The Florida Power & Light Company Endowed Scholarship is the most recent example of IRSC’s steadfastness to finding ways to remove barriers and support student diversity in STEM subjects. In September, the College announced a $4.9 million Hispanic-Serving Institutions STEM and Articulation Program grant from the U.S. Department of Education to increase the number of Hispanic and low-income students in STEM disciplines. These opportunities, combined with integrated academic and student support strategies and activities that promote retention and graduation, will help the IRSC increase the number of undergraduates from underrepresented groups who successfully complete STEM studies. 
 
To learn more about Florida Power & Light Company Endowed Scholarship and other student funding opportunities available through the IRSC Foundation, visit irscfoundation.org
 
About Florida Power & Light Company  
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest energy company in the U.S. as measured by retail electricity produced and sold. The company serves more than 5.6 million customer accounts supporting more than 11 million residents across Florida with clean, reliable and affordable electricity. FPL operates one of the cleanest power generation fleets in the U.S and in 2021 won the ReliabilityOne® National Reliability Excellence Award for the sixth time in the last seven years. The company was recognized in 2020 as one of the most trusted U.S. electric utilities by Escalent for the seventh consecutive year. FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Florida-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), a clean energy company widely recognized for its efforts in sustainability, ethics and diversity, and has been ranked No. 1 in the electric and gas utilities industry in Fortune’s 2020 list of “World’s Most Admired Companies.” NextEra Energy is also the parent company of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world’s largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun and a world leader in battery storage. For more information about NextEra Energy companies, visit these websites: www.NextEraEnergy.comwww.FPL.comwww.GulfPower.comwww.NextEraEnergyResources.com
 
About Indian River State College 
A leader in education and innovation, Indian River State College transforms lives by offering high-quality, affordable, and accessible education to the residents of Indian River, Martin, Okeechobee, and St. Lucie counties through traditional and online delivery. The College—ranked second-most-affordable in the nation—serves 26,000 students annually and offers more than 100 programs leading to Bachelor's degrees, Associate degrees, technical certificates, and applied technology diplomas. It is a recipient of the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, the nation's signature recognition of high achievement and performance among America's community colleges. Learn more at www.irsc.edu.   
Dec. 20, 2021|

First Southern Bank expanding to Treasure Coast

First Southern Bank expanding to Treasure Coast, Watters named VP

 

Steve Watters Headshot

First Southern Bank, a full-service community bank serving Florida and Georgia, announced Monday that it plans to expand to the Treasure Coast and has named longtime Treasure Coast bankerSteve Watters  as a senior vice
president.

Watters has joined First Southern Bank with more than 30 years of banking experience. He has been a regional bank executive leading teams in the Treasure Coast Region for the past 20 years. He has previously been with SunTrust, Harbor Community Bank and most recently with SouthState,  where he served as Treasure Coast regional retail executive.

 Kelly Ellis, west Florida market president for First Southern, said First Southern will open a loan production office in St. Lucie County in early 2022 with the intention of converting it to a full-service branch.

“We are pleased to welcome Steve to First Southern Bank,” said Daniel S. Hager, chairman and CEO. “As a seasoned market leader with valuable experience, we look forward to the insight, energy and value he will bring to the Bank in the coming years.”

Watters began his banking career with a small community bank in North Carolina and now is returning to his community banking roots with First Southern Bank.

Watters has served on numerous non-profit boards on the Treasure Coast as well as developing mentorship programs. Watters is a graduate of University of North Carolina at Wilmington where he majored in business administration.
First Southern Logo
Dec. 20, 2021|

Local Business Highlight: The Saussie Pig

Local Business Highlight: The Saussie Pig

 

Owner Tashiema Brown and his son Tre'Bon provided by Leah Voss/TC Palm

 

Tashiema “Beemer” Brown is doing the food truck thing in reverse. Instead of growing his business, he decided to downsize from brick-and-mortar restaurants to a food truck: The Saussie Pig.

“Bigger isn’t always better,” Brown said.

Brown, who moved to Vero Beach about 15 years ago, owned a dump truck business until the economy crashed, and he had to figure out something else to do for work. He thought of his first job at age 14 at a rib joint in his native Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

“I moved my family here and I didn’t want to move them back there because where I grew up and here is night and day,” Brown said. “This is like vacation. I knew I wanted to keep my family here.

“So I went back to what I knew — cooking and barbecue.”

Starting outside Vero Beach bars

Brown bought a smoker and he hauled it around town with his truck.

“I would set up outside of different bars throughout the community as they closed, and it just kind of took off,” Brown said.

He then bought a small trailer and started working some events. He also had opened a restaurant in Fellsmere and a sports bar in Vero Beach, but he was done dealing with employees. He wanted a family-run business with his wife, brother, daughter and sons.

He had bought the yellow truck about five years ago, but he didn’t renovate it until two months before the coronavirus pandemic.

Because of the nature of the business, the pandemic didn’t hurt his food truck.

“We stayed busy the entire time,” Brown said. “This truck never shut down.”

Naming menu items after customers

The Saussie Pig is named for its pulled pork sandwiches.

“You don’t have to ask for extra sauce,” Brown said. “We put enough on there.”

The sandwiches are named after people. The “Bender” — topped with coleslaw and a slice of pineapple — is named after a “surfer dude” customer, he said. The “Harvey” — topped with bacon, cheese and jalapeno — is named after Brown’s partner when he first started the food truck.

“These creations came from outside of the bars at night,” Brown said. “Every sandwich that I have on there, it was created by someone outside of a bar at 2 a.m. And the names just stuck.”

The sandwiches are named after people. The “Bender” — topped with coleslaw and a slice of pineapple — is named after a “surfer dude” customer, he said. The “Harvey” — topped with bacon, cheese and jalapeno — is named after Brown’s partner when he first started the food truck.

“These creations came from outside of the bars at night,” Brown said. “Every sandwich that I have on there, it was created by someone outside of a bar at 2 a.m. And the names just stuck.”

 

Dec. 13, 2021|

Crosstown Bridge earns Prestigious Honor

Crosstown Bridge earns Prestigious Honor

 

Crosstown Bridge

Content provided by American Council of Engineering Companies of Florida.

 

The American Council of Engineering Companies of Florida (ACEC-FL)’s Engineering Excellence Awards acknowledges Florida engineering firms for their innovative applications and elaborate projects. This year, eight Grand and seven Honor awards will be presented at the 2022 ACEC-FL Engineering Excellence Awards Banquet being held February 18, 2022 at The JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes. One Grand Conceptor award winner will be chosen from the grand awards as the overall best engineering project from the state of Florida and the recipient will be announced during the banquet.

The City of Port St. Lucie's Crosstown Parkway bridge project was honored with a Grand Award for Structural Systems.

All Grand award winners may can participate nationally in the 2022 American Council of Engineering Companies’ (ACEC) Engineering Excellence Award competition known as “the Academy Awards of the engineering industry.”

The ACEC-FL Public Relations Committee selected an illustrious board of judges representing government, transportation, education, environmental/water resources, geotechnical, public works, and real estate/land development. The judges included: JC Arteaga, AIA, NCARB, CBO,CGC, TBI,BCO, LEED AP BD+C, DBIA, HNTB Corporation; Ron Beladi, Neel-Schaffer, Inc. Curtis Burkett, PE LEED AP, City of Daytona Beach; John Ehrig, FAIA, NCARB, LEED AP, HHCP; Will Hawthorne, PE, Central Expressway Authority; Enit Medina, PE, Pevida Highway Designers; Courtney Page, PE, Pevida Highway Designers; Garit Poire, MS. Eng, EI, ENV SP, Turner Construction Company and Terry Puckett, PE, former Florida Department of Transportation District I and VII.

The judges rated projects and studies based on uniqueness and innovative applications; future value to the engineering profession; perception by the public; social, economic, and sustainable development considerations; complexity; and successful fulfillment of client/owners’ needs, including schedule and budget. A special thank you to ACEC-FL Public Relations Chair Jennifer Nix-McGerald of Element Engineering Group, Inc. for helping facilitate this competition.

GRAND Winners:

RS&H, Inc.
Crosstown Parkway Extension Design-Build
Client: City of Port St. Lucie Public Works Department
Category C: Structural Systems

AECOM Technical Services, Inc.

Selmon Extension
Client: Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority
Category C: Structural Systems

Chen Moore & Associates
Horizonal Directional Drilling of 7 miles of 54” & 48” Redundant Sewer Forcemain through Downtown Fort Lauderdale
Client: City of Fort Lauderdale
Category F: Water & Stormwater

Halff Associates, Inc.
FAMU Way
Client: City of Tallahassee
Category H: Transportation

Hardesty & Hanover

SW 1st Street Bridge Replacement

Client: Florida Department of Transportation
Category C: Structural Systems

HDR
C-44 Reservoir and Stormwater Treatment Area
Client: South Florida Water Management District
Category G: Water Resources

Patel, Greene and Associates, LLC
Resurface Polk Parkway MP 0.00 to MP 8.00
Client: Florida Department of Transportation: Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise
Category H: Transportation

WGI, Inc.
Turnpike Widening from Osceola Parkway to Beachline Expressway
Client: Turnpike Enterprise
Category H: Transportation

Dec. 13, 2021|

Governor Adds to IRSC District Board of Trustees

Governor Adds Dr. Melissa D. Kindell and Deputy Chief Milo Thornton to IRSC District Board of Trustees

Susan Caron, José Conrado and Anthony George Reappointed

 

IRSC New Appointees

 

On Friday, December 3, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the appointment of two Indian River State College alumni as the newest members of the College’s District Board of Trustees: Melissa Kindell, D.D.S., Owner of Everglades Pediatric Dentistry in Okeechobee, and Indian River County Sheriff Chief Deputy Milo Thornton.  Susan R. Caron (St. Lucie County), José L. Conrado (Indian River County) and Anthony D. George Jr. (Martin County), who serves as vice-chair for the board, were reappointed to another term.

“The individuals who serve on the Indian River State College District Board of Trustees comprise the most dedicated, thoughtful and visionary governing body on any institution of higher education anywhere, “ exclaims IRSC President Dr. Timothy Moore. “Governor DeSantis’ confidence in our mission is evident by these appointments. We are grateful for his support and look forward to realizing the Administration’s goal of Florida being number one in workforce education by 2030.”

Dr. Melissa Kindell, a pediatric dentist and Owner of Everglades Pediatric Dentistry, was born and raised in Okeechobee, Florida. After earning an Associate Degree at Indian River State College, she attended the University of Florida, where she received both a Bachelor of Science Degree in Microbiology and a Doctorate of Dental Medicine. Kindell is President of the Board at Martha’s House and serves on the Executive Board of the Economic Council of Okeechobee. She and her husband, Eric, reside in Okeechobee with their two boys.

Milo Thornton, Deputy Chief, Indian River County Sheriff’s Office, is an alumnus of IRSC—earning both his Associate in Science and Bachelor’s degrees in Criminal Justice from the College.  For the past 15 years, Thornton has also served as an Adjunct Instructor at the IRSC Treasure Coast Public Safety Training Complex.  He is an active member of the Gifford Youth Achievement Center, New Horizons of the Treasure Coast, Crossover Mission, Sunrise Rotary, Head Start, Dodgertown Elementary Community Partnership and Substance Awareness Center of Indian River County.

Susan Caron of Fort Pierce has served on the IRSC District Board of Trustees since 2012. She is an administrative assistant for the St. Lucie County Board of County Commissioners. Caron was the owner and vice president of Robert M. Caron Construction Inc. She is a current member of the Association of Community College Trustees and previously served on the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council.

José L. Conrado of Vero Beach, is the President of Conrado Enterprises. He is a former Chair of the IRSC District Board of Trustees and the Indian River State College Foundation. In 2020, he was recognized as Trustee of the Year by the Association of Florida Colleges. Conrado’s other community involvement includes active roles with Take Stock in Children, Habitat for Humanity, the American Red Cross, March of Dimes, the Rotary Club, and the Hibiscus Children’s Center. Conrado earned his Associate Degree from Indian River State College and was recognized with the IRSC Distinguished Alumni Award.

Attorney Anthony D. George Jr. has been a Florida Bar member since 1989. He owns a Stuart-based law practice focusing on elder law. Tony was first appointed to the Indian River State College District Board of Trustees in 2014 and presently serves as Vice-Chair. In high school, he took classes at Indian River Community College.  Tony earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences from the University of Florida and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Florida Fredric G. Levin College of Law.  In their spare time, Tony and his wife Deby try to keep up with their five children.

The nine-member board is comprised of members from each of the four counties in the IRSC service district—St. Lucie, Indian River, Martin, and Okeechobee—and establishes the policies that govern the operation of the College. Other members include Chairperson Sandra J. Krischke (St. Lucie County), Vicki Davis (Martin County), Christa Luna (Okeechobee County), and Brant Schirard Jr. (St. Lucie County).

Dec. 13, 2021|

Producer of Conductors arrives at Tradition

 Producer of Conductors arrives at Tradition

 

Accel rendering

Rendering of Accel International’s new manufacturing facility in the Tradition Center for Commerce.

 

Accel International Holdings, Inc., a producer of high-performance conductors, broke ground on December 9, 2021 at the Tradition Center for Commerce in Port St. Lucie for the company’s newest manufacturing facility.

At least 125 new jobs will be created by the company’s capital investment of $55 million for its new 150,000-square-foot facility and manufacturing equipment. Average annual earnings per worker at the Tradition facility are estimated to be $47,000 plus benefits, 16% higher than St. Lucie County’s average wage.

Originally established in a garage in 2002 and now headquartered in Meriden, Connecticut, Accel currently operates three manufacturing facilities in Indiana and Connecticut.  The company produces and distributes high-performance wire and cable products for use in aerospace, medical and telecommunications equipment.

“We are excited to expand our footprint into Florida and tap into the great resources that the city of Port St. Lucie has to offer. We also look forward to becoming an important part of the community,” said Accel Chief Financial Officer Tim Cummings.

“Accel will be a wonderful asset for our community.  The company’s manufacturing jobs are exactly the type of higher-wage jobs we have been wanting for our county’s dynamic workforce,” said St. Lucie County Commission Chair Sean Mitchell. “Accel is also planning on training partnerships with our schools and that is a great opportunity for students throughout our county.”

“Today’s groundbreaking on Accel International’s 40 acres in the Tradition Center for Commerce is another milestone in the ongoing diversification of the city’s economy,” said Port St. Lucie Mayor Shannon Martin. “In addition to higher-wage jobs, investment by companies like Accel make it possible for the city to continue to provide a high level of services and amenities for our residents while also reducing tax rates.”

“We began our relationship with Accel over two years ago by initially searching for an exciting facility to renovate.  Not being able to find a viable option, we considered many alternatives within the southeastern U.S. for a ground-up facility and finally chose Port St. Lucie,” said Malcolm Sina, executive chairman of Sina Companies, the project’s developer. “Having developed projects in over 30 states, it has been a real pleasure working with everyone in the city of Port St. Lucie, St. Lucie County, and the state of Florida.”

“This is what we do. It’s exactly what we need to be focusing on, in particular a focus on manufacturing,” said Florida Secretary of Commerce Mark Adler, who attended the Accel International Dec. 9 groundbreaking in his first official appearance following his appointment to the position of commerce secretary and interim president/CEO of Enterprise Florida on Dec. 8. “Florida is open for business.” The state funded $3 million in 2017 toward the development of road the facility is located on.

“Our focus on recruiting clean, high-paying manufacturing jobs to St. Lucie County continues to pay off,” said Pete Tesch, president of the Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County.  “We are very proud that Port St. Lucie was selected for Accel’s expansion over two sites in Connecticut and one in North Carolina.”

The company’s vice president of sales, Kyle Senk, told the approximately 100 groundbreaking ceremony attendees that Accel’s manufacturing equipment is expected to arrive at the new facility in June or July. Senk said the project is the company’s largest capital investment to date, and will be its most technologically advanced.

 

About the Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County

The EDC is a private, not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting economic vitality in St. Lucie County through the attraction, retention and expansion of businesses in the community.  The EDC works in partnership with local governments and the private sector to advance its goals of creating more and better-paying jobs for residents, broadening the tax base and improving St. Lucie County’s economic quality of life.  Contact the EDC at 772.336.6250 or www.youredc.com.

About Accel International Holdings

Accel is a premier manufacturer of high-performance conductors serving the aerospace, medical, industrial and computer marketplace with silver-plated, nickel-plated and tin-plated copper and copper alloy products. Established in 2006, Accel is a privately owned company with three manufacturing locations in Connecticut and Indiana, serving the domestic marketplace with international activity in Canada, Mexico and China.

 

Groundbreaking Photo by Maureen Saltzer

Local officials and representatives from Accel International and Sina Companies break ground Dec. 9 at the Tradition Center for Commerce.

 

Dec. 13, 2021|