Job promotions, award for Heart of Florida, and more Ocala/Marion news

Eric Drummond

2 promotions at Charles Perry Partners

Gainesville-based Charles Perry Partners, Inc. has promoted Eric Drummond to vice president of business development of the North Central Florida region and Matt Pinkoson to vice president/regional manager of the region.

Ocala lands new restaurant:Flying Boat Tap Room has tapas and 28 Florida craft beers on tap

Where are Marion’s workers?:More than half of Florida workers ages 18-64 do not have jobs

‘It won’t be developed’:Jim Gissy will conserve newly purchased 1,300 acres in SW Marion

Matt Pinkoson

Heart of Florida receives major award

Ocala-based Heart of Florida Health Center has been awarded the Redefining American Healthcare Award by the Healthcare Leadership Council, which is a coalition of chief executives of the nation’s leading healthcare companies and institutions.

The Heart of Florida Health Center's newest addition: a drive-thru pharmacy on Pine Avenue, just north of 17th Street, in Ocala. The building once housed a Wendy's restaurant.

“HLC is honoring the organization for its innovative work in integrating medical, dental and mental health services while providing accessibility to area residents who may lack health insurance and have limited financial means,” Heart of Florida said in a news release.

Paglia now serving on national board

John Paglia III, president of Ocala-based Florida Express Environmental and United American Recycling, has joined the board of the National Waste & Recycling Association’s Future Industry Leaders Alliance.

John Paglia III

In addition to his board and local duties, Pagila also writes the “From the Experts” monthly article in Waste Advantage Magazine. The articles are “focused on leadership, best practices, safety, marketing and maintenance,” according to a news release.

Hopebridge Autism Therapy Centers opens Ocala location

Indianapolis-based Hopebridge Autism Therapy Centers, which describes itself as “one of the largest autism therapy providers in the nation,” has opened an Ocala location at 3001 W. Silver Springs Blvd., Building 200.

“The new Ocala center will ultimately create more than 55 new jobs in the community to ensure every child receives one-on-one, personalized therapy,” Hopebridge said in a news release.

Hopebridge has opened an Ocala location.

Hopebridge has more than 100 centers in 12 states: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Ohio and Tennessee.

Caroline W. Ruff-Looney named head of Central Florida Community Action Agency

The Central Florida Community Action Agency, which serves, Marion, Alachua and Levy counties, has named Caroline W. Ruff-Looney as its new executive director/CEO.

Caroline W. Ruff-Looney

“CFCAA is one of many organizations that were created with the goal of alleviating poverty in America after President Lyndon Johnson declared a national ‘War on Poverty’ in 1964,” the agency said in a news release. “Through partnerships with other organizations, CFCAA works to help citizens reach their full potential and become financially self-sufficient.” 

The Villages Gem and Mineral Society show is back

After one year off because of the pandemic, The Villages Gem and Mineral Society will once again host its annual Artisan Show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 27 at the SeaBreeze Recreation Center, 2384 Buena Vista Blvd., The Villages.

Fifty vendors are expected. The show will help support charitable organizations including The Batey Girls and Your Humane Society of Sumter County.

The Villages Gem and Mineral Society annual show is back.

“The show offers for sale jewelry items consisting of pendants, earrings, bracelets; loose lapidary gems, cabochon stones and slabs; faceted stones; wire wrapped items; glass fusion; chain maille designs; fossils and minerals; and beads and findings, among other various treasures,” according to a news release.

Admission and parking are free. The show is open to the public. For more details, email Bob Delvaux at [email protected]

Bevin Michewicz named AVP/branch manager for Renasant in Ocala

Renasant Bank has announced that Bevin Michewicz is now assistant vice president and branch manager of the bank’s location at 1409 E. Silver Springs Blvd., Ocala. 

Bevin Michewicz

“Michewicz is a member of the Coastal Conservation Association of Florida and enjoys volunteering with Marion County 4-H and Southeastern Youth Fair,” the bank said in a news release. 

Renasant has offices in Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

New guide aims to help seniors

The nonprofit Senior Resource Foundation of Ocala has published a free Quick Reference Guide, designed to be “an easy reference for answers to questions that may come up in daily life, in particular for newcomers to our area,” according to a news release. It will include telephone numbers and other contact information.

The guide will be distributed to real estate offices, Marion Senior Services and other locations. More information at

Randy Estrada to lead TD Bank region that includes Ocala

TD Bank has appointed Randy Estrada as retail market president for North Florida, a territory that includes Ocala, Gainesville, Jacksonville, Tampa, Orlando and Daytona.

Randy Estrada

“In this role, Estrada leads 60 stores and manages a retail bank team of more than 500 employees,” the bank said in a news release.

The veteran retail banker has been with TD more than 15 years, most recently as retail market manager in Manhattan, the release said.

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