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  • | 4:00 a.m. March 26, 2014
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+ Halfacre Construction recognized nationally
Lakewood Ranch-based builder Halfacre Construction enjoyed multiple recognitions during the Star Building Systems’ Master Awards conference last week in San Diego.

Halfacre received the “Best in District Award,” “Master Builder of the Year Award” and “Best in Class” recognition for its building on Tallevast Road in Sarasota, Sun Hydraulics III.

Competition judges liked the building’s level of design and quality construction.

“What a great honor,” Halfacre President and CEO Jack Cox said in a statement. “We are honored to have been selected and are truly just humbled to be a part of a project that continues to make such a positive impact on the economic development of this region.”

Star Building Systems’ Master Awards recognize property attractiveness, skill of construction and other factors each year.

+ Berkshire Hathaway welcomes new broker
Mike Holland has joined the team of the Sarasota and Lakewood Ranch divisions of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Realty.

Prior to accepting his new position as a managing broker for the company, Holland managed and expanded three offices for an affiliate of Berkshire Hathaway located in Pennsylvania.

Holland also has an extensive accounting background and formerly worked as a real estate agent for Michael Saunders & Co.

Holland, a father of two and two-year Sarasota resident, said he feels excited and proud to work with the “outstanding and reputable company” and looks forward to watching the continuous growth of the Lakewood Ranch and Sarasota markets.

Berkshire Hathaway, formerly Prudential Florida Realty, services more than 17 counties throughout the state and has more than 1,500 sales employees.

+ CHAC becomes ‘employment center’
After 60 years of serving adults and children with disabilities, Community Haven became certified March 13 as an “employment center.”

The Florida Department of Management Services, which granted the organization its new title, oversees Respect of Florida — a state program that helps nonprofit organizations market their services.

Respect’s Service Contact Director John McBride will work with Community Haven Director of Adult Services Brad Jones to provide resources to create new products and services for the organization.

The men hope the union will boost employment opportunities for the disabled adults who use Community Haven’s programs.

Each year, Community Haven helps more than 700 children and adults by fostering independence to enable its participants to be active members of society through education, socializing, housing, fitness, job placement and other services.

+ Taylor Morrison celebrates opening
Taylor Morrison invited the public to enjoy refreshments, music and arts-and-crafts activities March 22 for the grand opening of its newest community, Esplanade at Artisan Lakes.

The backyard barbecue provided visitors with the opportunity to tour furnished model homes featured on the 800-acre property in northern Manatee County.

The Palmetto community, like its Lakewood Ranch and Siesta Key sister lookalikes, will feature resort-style living and maintenance-free homes in a range of floor plans.

A 6,000-square-foot amenity center, with a lagoon-style swimming pool and adjacent fire pit, a children’s play area and a dog park will also be featured on the premises. Other planned amenities include a fitness center, spa services, an outdoor events lawn and others.

“Esplanade communities are all about living an active lifestyle; it’s about the convenience of playing and relaxing where you live,” Vice President of Sales Cammie Longenecker said. “Residents can choose to be as busy as they want to be and enjoy a wide range of activities and amenities without leaving their neighborhood.”

+ Manatee Chamber promotes leaders
The Manatee Chamber of Commerce promoted two individuals to leading roles March 12.

The advancement of Neil Spirtas to the chamber’s senior vice president position and Jacki Dezelski to executive vice president came in response to the duo’s accomplishments within the organization, Manatee Chamber President Bob Bartz said.

Spirtas, a 29-year chamber member, has held positions at Pennsylvania State University and the University of Florida. He oversees small-business, tourism development and governmental affairs.

Dezelski has been with the chamber for 18 years and has a master’s degree in business from the University of Florida. She will oversee issues involving education, health care and communication, among others.




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