Lt. Governor Announces
Florida Gulf Coast University Board of Trustees
FT. MYERS - Lt. Governor Frank Brogan today announced Governor Jeb Bush's appointees to the Florida Gulf Coast University's (FGCU) Board of Trustees. The Board will set policy and serve as the institution's legal owner and final authority responsible for efficient and effective use of resources.
"As one of the state's newest universities, Florida Gulf Coast University has made tremendous achievements in a short time," said Lt. Governor Brogan. "I am confident the new board members will continue to build upon the institution's reputation for excellence in higher education."
Joined by Secretary of Education Jim Horne, Lt. Governor Brogan announced the following appointments:
Brian Cobb is the founder and Vice Chairman of the Naples Children and Education Foundation, an organization that provides funding to Collier County children's charities. Thanks to their fundraising efforts this year, they were able to distribute over $2 million to children's charities. Mr. Cobb is currently president of Cobb Corp., LLC. He attended the University of Nevada, where he received his Bachelor's degree in Business Administration in 1963. He resides in Naples.
Chief Larry D. Hart, a native of Ft. Myers, is the recently retired Chief of the Ft. Myers Police Department. He has over 22 years of law enforcement experience and was appointed by Governor Bush to the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Information Systems Council. As a well-respected civic leader, Chief Hart has worked closely with FGCU on several community projects, including a partnership with FGCU to establish a role model program for minority students. Chief Hart received an Associate's degree in Criminal Justice from Edison Community College and a Bachelor's degree in Professional Studies from Barry University. He lives in Fort Myers.
Renee Lee is the County Attorney for the Charlotte County Attorney's Office. Previously, she served as an assistant county attorney for the Sarasota County Attorney's Office and the Broward County Attorney's Office. Ms. Lee served as president of the Florida Association of County Attorneys from 2000-01, and was appointed to the 20th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission in 1997. She is also a member of the Environmental Equity and Justice Commission and the NAACP. Ms. Lee received her Bachelor's degree in English Literature from Fisk University in 1974. She resides in Port Charlotte.
Dr. Bernard Lester is the President / COO of Alico, Inc, the company that donated the land to the state on which Florida Gulf Coast University was built. He has also served on FGCU's College of Business Advisory Council since 1998 and was an adjunct professor at the University of Florida from 1967 to 1975. Dr. Lester holds a B.S.A and M.S.A. from the University of Florida and a Ph.D. from Texas A & M University. He is a resident of LaBelle.
David Lucas is the chairman of the Bonita Bay Group, a land development firm. He has served on the Board of Trustees for the Canterbury School since 1986 and was president of the Board from 1988 thru 1996. He is currently the chairman and treasurer. Mr. Lucas has also served on the Board of Trustees for the Reformed Theological Seminary since 1997. He received his Master's in Business Administration from Harvard Business
School in 1971. He lives in Ft. Myers.
Scott Lutgert has been a strong supporter of FGCU since its inception. He is also a founding sponsor of the Collier County Education Foundation, which supports Collier County Public Schools. In addition, Lutgert established a $50,000 endowment fund at FGCU for programs within the University's Renaissance Academy, which resulted in two matching grants bringing the endowment to $150,000. He also serves as a mentor with the Boys and Girls Club of Collier County. He is currently the president and CEO of The Lutgert Companies, a real estate development company as well as the president and CEO of Premier Properties of Southwest Florida, Inc. Lutgert received his Master's in Business Administration from the University of Chicago in 1969. He resides in Naples.
Gerri Moll has been a member of the FGCU Foundation since 1998 and has also served on the University's Presidential Search Committee and the Athletics Committee. She is a founding sponsor of and mentor for the Take Stock in Children program. Her experience as President of Bank of America and as a member of the Collier County Economic Development Council will make her a valuable addition to the Board. She received business and banking degrees from the University of Florida, the McMaster University and Louisiana State University. She is a resident of Naples.
Dr. Harry Moon has been interested in the development of research and education clinical programs in South Florida for the past twenty years. As CEO of the Cleveland Clinic Florida, he has forged an excellent working relationship with other universities in South Florida, including the University of Miami and Nova Southeastern University. He is currently a member of the Florida Council of 100 and the Economic Development Council of Collier County. Dr. Moon received a B.A. from Tulane University and a M.D. from the University of South Alabama. He lives in Ft. Lauderdale.
Edward A. Morton is currently the Chairman of the FGCU Foundation Board. He has served on this board in different capacities since 1997, and before that he was directly involved in support of public education in Collier
County. He served on the Board of the Collier County Education Foundation and was Chairman of the Collier County Partners in Education Board. Mr. Morton received a B.S. in Accounting from Notre Dame and an MBA from the University of Miami. He has also attended Florida International University. He is a resident of Naples.
Jerry Starkey is an entrepreneur and 13-year resident of Florida who is an active leader in his community. Through grants and scholarships offered by his company, WCI Communities, he has helped many students and employees to continue their studies at FGCU. He received the Commissioner's Award of Distinction from Education Commissioner Charlie Crist for his company's efforts to improve the educational environment in the state. Mr. Starkey received his Bachelor's in Business Administration from North Texas State University and his law degree from Texas Tech University. He is a resident of Fort Myers.
Linda Taylor was one of the founding members and Chairperson of the FGCU Foundation Board. She has worked losely with the university as an ex-officio member of all the Foundation committees and as a member of the University Finance Committee for the past five years. She received a Presidential award from President Ronald Reagan for her work in support of
public education. Ms. Taylor attended Ohio State University, where she received her B.S. in Education. She is a resident of Fort Myers.
Michael Villalobos, as president of the Southwest Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, began an initiative to partner with FGCU to help increase Hispanic procurement opportunities, assist FGCU with the recruitment of Hispanic students and create the Hispanic Chamber FGCU Scholarship,among other things. He is a former member of the Advisory Board of the Public Schools Enrichment Program, a community-supported and community-directed partnership between primary and econdary public schools in Southwest Florida. He is currently an associate attorney with Cook & Koch, P.A. Mr. Villalobos received his Bachelor's degree in Business Management from Florida State University and his law degree from the Loyola School of Law in New Orleans. He lives in Ft. Myers.
Magali Solimano, the elected FGCU student body president, is the 13th member of the Board of Trustees.
Senate Bill 1162, sponsored by Senators Ken Pruitt (Port St. Lucie), Jim Horne (Orange Park), and Jim Sebesta (St. Petersburg) and Representatives Evelyn Lynn (Ormond Beach) and Dennis Baxley (Ocala), calls for the Governor to appoint a Board of Trustees for each of Florida's 11 universities.