Business & Breakfast | Marketing in a Down Economy

When budgets shrink, marketing is often one of the first items to be eliminated.  At the Chamber’s April Business & Breakfast, attendees learned the importance of maintaining a marketing presence throughout tough times as well as free ways to make an impact.

April Business & Breakfast

CPS Investment Advisors sponsored the program, titled “Marketing in a Down Economy.”  CPS Regional Director of Retirement Services, Brian Mau, moderated a panel discussion and Q&A session with representatives from Madden, a brand identity firm in Lakeland.  President Steve Madden, Creative Director Allen Reed, and Creative Account Manager Michelle Ledford shared insights about national and local marketing trends and trendsetters.

A recurring theme of the breakfast was the importance of maintaining a marketing presence in order to gain marketshare.  The Madden team presented some great ideas for marketing outside of the proverbial box as well as some key ways to market at little to no cost.  In addition to using email blasts, attendees were encouraged to establish themselves as experts in their fields, use PR for free publicity, and implement or update customer referral programs.

April Business & Breakfast April Business & Breakfast

Guests were treated to an excellent breakfast and beautiful scenery at the Grasslands Country Club.

For audio of the event, please download the second episode of the Chamber podcast or subscribe here.



Governor appoints USF Poly CEO to regional planning post

Governor appoints USF Poly CEO to regional planning post

(Lakeland, Fla., April 15, 2009) –  Governor Charlie Crist has appointed Dr. Marshall Goodman, vice president and chief executive officer of the University of South Florida Polytechnic, to the Central Florida Regional Planning Council. His term begins April 13, 2009, and ends Oct. 1, 2010.

The Central Florida Regional Planning Council is a planning and public policy agency that works with public and private leadership in central Florida to achieve a healthy and sustainable future. It serves DeSoto, Hardee, Highlands, Okeechobee and Polk Counties.

“I’m honored to serve the governor and represent the university and the community,” said Goodman. “The decisions and actions of the council have a significant and positive impact on the future of this region.”

Since joining USF Polytechnic in 2006, Goodman has made regional economic development a priority. In his career he has traveled extensively and has consulted on state politics, government ethics, public administration, and international trade. From 1999-2001 he served Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson as special assistant for globalization. His international focus areas have included India, the Pacific Rim, Central and South America, and the European Union.

Goodman’s civic involvement includes seats on the boards of the Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce, the Auburndale Chamber of Commerce, the Lakeland Economic Development Council, the Central Florida Development Council, the Polk Museum of Art, the Learning Resource Center of Polk County, Polk Vision, the United Way of Central Florida, the Bartow Regional Medical Center and others. He is a participant in the Tampa Bay Partnership’s CEO Direct leadership program and a member of the inaugural class of Leadership Polk and active with the Tampa Bay Partnership and myRegion.org.


USF Polytechnic offers Summer Tutoring in Reading and Writing

USF Polytechnic offers summer tutoring in reading and writing for first through eighth graders.

(Lakeland, Fla., April 14, 2009) — The University of South Florida Polytechnic is offering its Summer Tutoring in Reading and Writing (STRW) program for first through eighth grade students who are experiencing reading difficulties. Tutoring is provided by graduate candidates who are completing their master of arts in reading from USFP and who are current elementary and middle school teachers in the community. STRW is supervised by Drs. Sherry Kragler and Ruth Sylvester from the division of Childhood Education and Literacy Studies.

Students who are selected to participate are assessed using multiple informal reading and writing assessments. Based on the results of these assessments, an instruction plan is developed and implemented for each child by their assigned tutor. Instruction may be one-on-one or in small groups.

Tutoring sessions will be held from 9:00 AM – 12:30 PM Monday and Wednesday on June 8, 10, 15, 17, 22, and 24. The cost for the summer tutoring is $40.00.

Transportation to USF Polytechnic is the responsibility of the child’s parent or guardian. At the end of the project the child’s parent or guardian will receive a progress report.

Parents and guardians can go to poly.usf.edu/RWTutoring and select “Register Online” to register and pay the $40.00 registration fee. Registration deadline is May 8.

For more information contact Tracey Cayson  863.667.7072, tcayson@poly.usf.edu


RC – Julianne’s

RC - Juliannes Being a restaurant owner of JJ’s Cafe for 9 years, Joanne List ventured out to a much needed Fine Dining Restaurant and  Banquet Facility in Lakeland. She invites you to the old Ryan’s building at 3125 US Highway 98S, which has been transformed into a beautiful separate dining room, bar / lounge and banquet facility which seats 175 to 200 guests. Julianne’s is one of the finest dining experiences in Lakeland serving Steaks, Chicken, Pasta and Seafood.

Congratulations to Joanne and the Entire Julianne’s staff on this great accomplishment. Special thanks to Mayor Buddy Fletcher for officiating the ceremony.


RC – Webster University

Webster University celebrates its 10 year Anniversary in Lakeland.  Local companies, chamber members, alumni, current students, staff and faculty participated in the weekly festivities.  Webster will continue to host other events throughout 2009 in honor of their 10 year Anniversary.

RC - Webster (6)

Congratulations to Webster University on this great achievement. Special thanks to Mayor Buddy Fletcher for officiating this ceremony.