Board of Directors
CHAIR CHRISTOPHER D. FLAGG
FLAGG Design Studio
Chris Flagg, president of FLAGG Design Studio, has dedicated himself to
community and Downtown advocacy through his many professional and
philanthropic endeavors. His firm specializes in urban design, community
planning, place-making, campus master planning and commissioned
illustrations. Mr. Flagg is a current member of the JEDC’s Downtown
Development Review Board and has been an Executive Board Member of DVI
for two years, serving on multiple committees including the “Great
Streets,” Advocacy and Green Committees. His professional involvement
in Downtown development has included the redevelopment of Laura Street,
lead designer on Friendship Fountain, the Laura Street Façade
Improvement Grant Program, the Downtown Arts District Activation
Guidebook and the redevelopment plans for the Southbank Riverwalk
replacement. He is a graduate of Leadership Jacksonville, Class of 2003,
and is licensed to practice his profession of Landscape Architecture in
Florida and South Carolina.
Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront
Dan King, general
manager of Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront, is a veteran in
the hospitality industry having worked in 11 Hyatt hotels over a 30 year
Hyatt career. Mr. King has resided in Jacksonville for four years and
is active in our local community. King serves as Past President of Visit
Jacksonville CVB, Past President of North Florida Hotel and
Lodging, Past President of the Jacksonville Hospitality Institute,
Executive Board member of Downtown Vision, Board Member Gator Bowl
Association, and Trustee, Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce. King has
been nominated four times for the national Hyatt general manager of
the year award, and Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront has been named
Best Place To Work in Northeast Florida for Large Businesses. The Hyatt
Regency is also a supporting partner of the Clara White Mission and
Sulzbacher Center for the homeless. Originally from the Washington DC
area, King has a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Longwood
University, and resides with his wife and two children in Jacksonville. SECRETARY
CBRE Group, Inc.
Oliver Barakat is a senior vice president with CBRE specializing in the
leasing and sales of office space. After attending university and living
in Washington, DC for eight years, Mr. Barakat move back home to
Jacksonville in 1996. He currently serves as a Board member of Hubbard
House and Episcopal School of Jacksonville. He is a past president of
NAIOP and JaxPride, and a graduate of the Leadership Jacksonville Class
of 2000. Mr. Barakat has significant experience Downtown, including a
seven-year stint on the Design Review Committee, a member of the JEDC’s
Downtown Infrastructure Task Force which helped create the Downtown
Action Plan, and most recently was a member of Mayor Brown’s Downtown
Transition Committee. Mr. Barakat graduated from the American University
in Washington, DC with a BSBA in Finance and Real Estate.
Debbie Buckland is executive vice president and commercial banking manager for SunTrust in Northeast Florida. Ms. Buckland and her family moved to Jacksonville in the late nineties, when she joined the SunTrust Commercial Banking Group in North Florida. Debbie is immediate past chair for the Jacksonville Women’s Business Center, and is a member of the Board of Governors of JAX Chamber. She is a past board chair of the American Cancer Society Duval Board and served on the Florida Division Board. She is a member of Wolfson Children’s Hospital Women’s Board, Jacksonville Women’s Network and the Women’s Giving Alliance. She was named a 2006 Woman of Influence by the Jacksonville Business Journal, is a 2009 Graduate of Leadership Jacksonville and in 2011 was named by the Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women as one of Jacksonville’s Women Making a Difference. She is a 1979 graduate of Emory & Henry College in Emory, Virginia with a B.A. in Business & Economics and Philosophy. IMMEDIATE PAST-CHAIR
MICHAEL A. JENNINGS
As Vice President, Government Affairs of the nine-state Southeast region
of Prudential's External Affairs, Mr. Jennings is responsible for
Prudential's legislative and regulatory affairs activities in those
states. A strong believer in service to his community, industry and
state, Mr. Jennings stays engaged. His past and current involvement
includes: chair and Board member, Downtown Vision, Inc., Jacksonville;
immediate past chair and current Board member, Associated Industries of
Florida; past chair and current Executive Committee and Board member,
Florida TaxWatch; past chair and current Executive Committee and Board
member, Florida Insurance Council; and former chair, Communities in
Schools of Florida. Mr. Jennings is chair and Board member of the
Florida Life and Health Guaranty Association; treasurer and Board member
of the Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Corporation of Maryland, and
Board member of the Kentucky and Tennessee Life and Health Insurance
Guaranty Associations. He is also a member of the Government Affairs
Council of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and member of the Florida
Chamber of Commerce. Florida Governor Jeb Bush appointed Mr. Jennings to
serve as a member of the Task Force on Privacy and Technology created
by the 2000 Florida Legislature. He is a graduate of Leadership Florida
and Leadership Jacksonville. Mr. Jennings holds a Bachelor of Arts
degree from Florida State University and a Juris Doctor degree from
Stetson University College of Law, and is a member of The Florida Bar.
He also served in the U.S. Navy as a member of the Judge Advocate
DIRECTORS BARRY ARGALAS
Regency Centers Corporations
Barry Argalas is senior vice president, head of transactions with Regency Centers Corporation. He is responsible for all national acquisition and disposition activity. Mr. Argalas began his career with Regency in 1996 and was promoted his current position in 2007. He has been in the real estate industry for 12 years and worked as an analyst for Chase Manhattan Mortgage prior to joining Regency. During his tenure at Regency, Mr. Argalas has been involved in more than $7 billion of transaction activity, notably the sale of more than $1.6 billion of open-air shopping centers and acquisitions in excess of $4.7 billion. In addition, Mr. Argalas oversees the transition of properties from the Regency operating portfolio into the company’s co-investment partnerships. Mr. Argalas received his B.S. in Finance with a minor in Accounting from Florida State University. RON CHAMBLIN
Ron Chamblin is the owner of two of Jacksonville’s finest used and rare bookstores. A native of Live Oak, Mr. Chamblin was previously a technical writer for the aerospace industry until he opened his first bookstore, Chamblin’s Bookmine, in 1976. In 2008, Mr. Chamblin bought a vacant building Downtown and renovated it into Chamblin’s Uptown and Chamblin’s Uptown Café. He now employs 18 workers in his two stores. Mr. Chamblin is an avid pilot, workaholic, and enjoys building engines, airplanes and houses.
CSX Real Estate Property, Inc.
Stephen Crosby currently serves as president of CSX Real Estate Property, Inc. During his 25- year tenure with CSX, Mr. Crosby has served as vice president of development, real estate operations, and corridor development, as well as numerous other managerial positions before assuming the title of president in 2000. He received his B.S. and M.B.A. from the University of Virginia, and University of Florida, respectively. Mr. Crosby currently serves on the Urban Land Institute – North Florida Advisory Board, is Past National Chairman of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP), is a past member of the advisory board of the University of Virginia School of Architecture.
W. EDWIN FRAZIER, III
W. Edwin Frazier, III is senior vice president, chief administrative officer and corporate secretary for Rayonier, Inc. Mr. Frazier was elected to his current position in December 2007. He joined Rayonier in 1999 as assistant general counsel, was promoted to associate general counsel in 2000 and elected corporate secretary in 2001. Mr. Frazier was named vice president governance and corporate secretary in 2003 and was elected senior vice president, administration and corporate secretary in 2004. From 1991 to 1999, Mr. Frazier was with the legal department of Georgia-Pacific, last serving as chief counsel – corporate. Prior to that, he specialized in intellectual property and technology law with Troutman Sanders. Mr. Frazier received his B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Tennessee and his J.D. from Emory University. He completed the Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration Advanced Management Program in 2001.
Wyndham Jacksonville Riverwalk
Donald Harris is the general manager of Wyndham Jacksonville Riverwalk, a 320-room Downtown hotel on the Southbank. He is responsible for overseeing all aspects of property management in accordance with the company’s mission statement, including maximization of financial performance, guest satisfaction, and staff development within established quality guidelines. Prior to his current position, Mr. Harris served as general manager of Fairfield Inn & Suites for Peachtree Hotel Group, director of food and beverage operations for MMI Hotel Group, general manager at the Courtyard Marriott at the Airport, food and beverage director at the Holiday Inn at the Airport and the Hilton, and a comedy club, restaurant and bar manager. Mr. Harris is past chairman of Visit Jacksonville and a member of various organizations, including the Board of Governors of JAX Chamber, the Board of Directors of the North Florida Hotel Association, the Jacksonville International Airport Managers Council and the Board of Directors of the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.
The Jacksonville Landing
Janice Lowe is the general manager of The Jacksonville Landing. Ms. Lowe has more than 20 years of experience in the retail business and has worked in Downtown Jacksonville since 1989. Her tenure at The Jacksonville Landing spans a seventeen-year period where she has held various positions such as special events coordinator, marketing director and general manager. She has worked with a large number of charities and community organizations throughout the years. Ms. Lowe currently serves as vice-chair of Visit Jacksonville. She is a graduate of Florida State University and resides in Jacksonville’s Southside with her husband, Charlie, and their son, Zachary.
Perdue Office Interiors
Vince McCormack, a Jacksonville native, is the president and co-owner of Perdue Office Interiors. Mr. McCormack has been with the company since 1986. In 2001, after years in sales and sales management, Mr. McCormack took over as president. In 2007, he and an investment partner purchased the company. Mr. McCormack is active in the business community, having served on the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Governors and currently serving on the Board of Directors as chair of Entrepreneurial Development. He is also a trustee with the Chamber, and serves on the advisory council for Jax USA Partnership, the executive committee of the Gator Bowl Association and several nonprofit boards including Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Florida. Two years ago, Mr. McCormack moved his company from the Baymeadows area back Downtown, where the company was founded in 1916. Mr. McCormack was a member of the committee that worked on NAIOP's Downtown position paper and was also a member of the Chamber's 2010 Downtown Revitalization Committee. Most recently, Mr. McCormack partnered with CoWork Jax, located above Perdue, to make the initiative a reality Downtown.
WILLIAM R. PRESCOTT
William R. Prescott is the senior vice president, stadium operations/chief financial officer for the Jacksonville Jaguars. He is responsible for managing the Jaguars’ areas of EverBank Field and stadium concession operations on a year-round basis. Mr. Prescott serves as the liaison for the Jaguars and the City of Jacksonville on lease matters and SMG on facility issues. Prior to Super Bowl XXXIX, Mr. Prescott oversaw the design and construction of the $63 million renovation of EverBank Field. As CFO, he oversees the financial operations and information technology of the team, interacts with the NFL on financial and business matters and serves on an NFL committee to review the best practices of financial and business operations. Mr. Prescott is also responsible for the financial operations of other Wayne Weaver-related entities, such as the DAR Group, the Jacksonville Jaguars Foundation and the Weaver Family Foundation. A native of the Bronx, N.Y., Mr. Prescott is a graduate of Pace University with a degree in accounting and a master's degree in taxation. He is a member of the executive board and treasurer of Visit Jacksonville, the Board of Governors of JAX Chamber, and former chairman for the Mohawk District of the Boy Scouts of North Florida. He has two sons, Christopher and Michael, and a step-daughter Nikki. He and his wife, Kim, live in Ponte Vedra Beach.
Connect Integrated Marketing
John Ream is an ideas-led marketing professional with more than 10 years of marketing and communications experience within the Jacksonville market. Mr. Ream led all marketing and communications efforts for an aggressive statewide expansion of Solantic Walk-in Urgent Care. In 2009, he opened his own marketing consultancy located Downtown - Connect Integrated Marketing, which has seen rapid growth throughout the state of Florida, New York and California. Recently, Mr. Ream was recognized by the Jacksonville Business Journal as one of the top 40 professionals under the age of 40 to watch. Mr. Ream has a unique perspective on Downtown from his experience as a one-time resident, landlord and now Downtown business and property owner. His civic involvement includes the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, The First Tee of St. Johns County, First Coast Worksite Wellness Council and the Episcopal High School Alumni Advisory Board.
El-Ad Florida, LLC
Pamela Smith is the owner’s representative for El-Ad Florida, LLC, the owners of the AT&T Tower 301 building in Downtown Jacksonville. Ms. Smith and her husband, Lance, moved from Miami to Jacksonville in 2009, where she launched Smith Commercial Real Estate, LLC. She was recruited by El-Ad Florida, LLC in 2010 to reposition their 1,000,000 SF office property. Ms. Smith has 15 years of commercial real estate experience leasing and managing Class A office properties in South Florida, and she has become intensely involved in the revitalization of Downtown Jacksonville. Ms. Smith is a past president of Commercial Real Estate Women-Miami, a Trustee member and Board of Governor’s member of the Jacksonville Chamber and was designated a Co-Star Power Broker in 2008. Ms. Smith is a marketing graduate of the University of Florida and received an MBA from Florida International University. In 2011, Ms. Smith organized the first Over the Edge event held in Florida, where participants rappelled down 30 stories of the building to support the Boy Scouts of America. The event raised $70,000 and will become an annual event at AT&T Tower 301.
The Southerland Group/Triage Management Services
Jay Southerland is the president/chief executive officer of The
Southerland Group, Inc., which develops real estate focused on
commercial and multi-family projects. He also serves as chief executive
officer for Triage Management Services, Inc., which is a managed repair
service developed to provide the property insurance industry with a
qualified national network of contractors to assist in offering repair
services to homeowners with a property claim. Upon graduating, Mr.
Southerland joined Andersen Consulting in Atlanta and proceeded to work
in various public and private sectors, including The Federal Reserve
Bank and Memorial Hospital. For the past 11 years, he has focused on
entrepreneurial endeavors. Returning to Florida in 1990, he has made
Jacksonville his home. Mr. Southerland enjoys his involvement with and
support of civic and professional organizations, such as Children’s Home
Society, various real estate organizations, and involvement in youth
athletics. He is a Florida native, raised in the Big Bend area, and
obtained his B.S. and M.B.A. degrees with an emphasis in finance from
Florida State University in 1981. Mr. Southerland has four children and
attends San Jose Catholic Church. He currently coaches his son’s
basketball and flag football teams, and hobbies include biking,
exercising and playing golf.
Holland & Knight
Sarah Toppi is an attorney with the litigation group at Holland & Knight. She is experienced in handling real estate litigation matters, especially the representation of condominium developers. She is a 1998 graduate of West Point and served as an aviation officer and Chinook helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army before attending law school at the University of Florida, where she was awarded the Book Awards for Evidence and Administrative Law. Ms. Toppi serves on the Board of Directors for the West Point Society of North Florida and of the Hispanic Bar Association of Jacksonville. She is also a member of the Junior League of Jacksonville and Jacksonville Bar Association. Ms. Toppi moved to Jacksonville in 2006 and lives with her family in Springfield.
Smith, Hulsey & Busey and Downtown resident
Jacksonville native Annika Wallace is an attorney at Smith, Hulsey & Busey and a Downtown resident. Ms. Wallace is an associate in the firm’s corporate and health care law department. Ms. Wallace’s practice is focused on general business and health care matters, including mergers and acquisitions, healthcare regulatory and fraud and abuse issues, contract preparation and negotiation, debt and equity financings, joint ventures and private placements. Ms. Wallace is a member of the Jacksonville Bar Association, the Florida Bar and the American Health Lawyers Association. She was also recently recognized by Chambers and Partners USA as "a rising star" in the Jacksonville health care law community. Married to a Baptist Medical Center physician, Ms. Wallace and her husband recently remodeled one of the penthouse units at San Marco place, which allows them to live and work Downtown. Ms. Wallace works part-time as an attorney and takes care of her infant son. She and her family frequent Downtown restaurants and shops, and she spends every evening taking her son on a stroll along the Riverwalk.
ROBERT ARLEIGH WHITE
Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville
Robert Arleigh White has twenty years experience managing local arts organizations in Jacksonville, where he has also been active in promoting a host of arts related initiatives. Currently, he serves as the executive director for the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville. Previously, Mr. White served as the executive and artistic director for Theatre Jacksonville, where he was directly responsible for the artistic direction of fifty plays and worked to produce dozens more. During his tenure, he helped to ensure the company’s artistic relevance by creating new, community-based program initiatives and moved the institution out of financial insecurity by developing long-lasting partnerships with corporations, businesses, artists and schools. Mr. White has also worked as a Duval County teacher, first at Wolfson High School and later at Fletcher. He taught English, speech, drama, creative writing, and enjoyed learning from his students. A recognized artist in his own right, Mr. White has been honored with numerous awards for his performances (1987 and 1997) and directorial undertakings (1987, 1989 and 2000), as well as for his arts advocacy on behalf of cultural institutions in Jacksonville (1999).
Jacksonville Economic Development Commission
Paul Crawford joined the Jacksonville Economic Development Commission
(JEDC) in May 2006 and is currently the acting executive director. Mr.
Crawford has vast experience in both the public and private sectors and
works to maintain a competitive business environment by helping to
expand and recruit targeted industries to bring job-generating
investments to Jacksonville. Mr. Crawford is tasked with
implementing the mayor’s vision and is instrumental in the JEDC
experiencing significant achievements in business development and small
business initiatives, development at Cecil Commerce Center and continued
revitalization in Downtown, the Jacksonville International Airport
Community Redevelopment Area and the city’s Enterprise and Empowerment
Zones. Crawford has worked in numerous agencies within the City of
Jacksonville for the past 14 years and in the private sector six years
prior to that. As a registered landscape architect, Paul also served as a
project manager and planner while working in the private sector for
Parsons, Harland Bartholomew and Associates, and BHR.
Jacksonville City Council
Don Redman is a successful businessman, operating a small business for more than 40 years, and a member of the Jacksonville City Council. He and his wife, Debbie, have two daughters, three sons and nine grandchildren. Each of their children attended local public schools and graduated from Englewood High School. Council Member Redman has been an active member of First Baptist Church Jacksonville for 32 years and served as an usher for 27 years. He is a race director in his spare time and involved in producing a number of local triathlons. Active in Little League, River City Swimming, Master Swimming, and an avid biker and runner, Council Member Redman has entered and finished every Jacksonville River Run.