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Movers & Shakers: New Democratic Deputy Whips; Sachs retools firm

Democratic state representatives Lori Berman, of Delray Beach, Reggie Fullwood, of Jacksonville, José  Rodríguez, of Miami, Hazelle Rogers, of Lauderhill,  and Joe Saunders, of Orlando, have been appointed Democratic Deputy Whips by House Democratic Leader Perry Thurston (D-Plantation) and House Democratic Whip Alan Williams (D-Tallahassee).

Thurston called the representatives outstanding public servants who have demonstrated qualities of leadership, organization and a rigorous work ethic that are essential to the task of Deputy Whip,” in a press statement.

From Williams:  “Deputy whips are an important position, which includes the careful review of all legislation that comes before the Florida House of Representatives. Their task also involves counting votes and communicating the Democratic Caucus position to other Caucus members. I am confident that we have assembled an effective and great team.”

'Shift Happens' at Ron Sachs 

The 18-year-old public relations firm, Ron Sachs Communications, is tackling dramatic changes in the industry by taking on “sweeping repositioning and rebranding,” including a name change, says its founder.

“The whole world of media has changed,” says Sachs, a former Miami Herald reporter and ex-director of communications for Florida Gov. Lawton Chiles.
 Sachs Media Group, with offices in Tallahassee and Orlando, will continue to embrace its public relations role while “harnessing the power” of new multimedia platforms for its corporate, nonprofit and government clients, he says.

 Among  new ventures, the group is launching a new platform, Florida Newsmakers, an online public affairs program featuring top elected officials and industry leaders, in partnership with the Florida Press Association.

Sachs has also added two new staffers: Trimmel Gomes, an 11-year Florida TV and radio newsman, who has served as statewide news director of Florida Public Radio since 2004, and Peter Dowling, a former Marine counter-terrorism team leader who most recently worked within Homeland Security in the communications office of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service in Washington, D.C.

Jim Turner joins News Service

 Former Sunshine State News legislative reporter Jim Turner started working at The News Service of Florida on Monday. The New Jersey native previously spent 20 years with Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers, covering government and politics and working as a business editor. He's also covered education and sports.

Scott makes several new board appointments

 Gov. Rick Scott has announced appointments to the Florida Prepaid College Board, a few college boards and the Board of Physical Therapy Practice.

Among the appointees:

■ Robert Champion, a  Ponte Vedra Beach wealth management advisor with Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, and Bradenton resident Patrick Hogan, managing shareholder of Hogan Legal Services, to the Florida Prepaid College Board. Champion, 49, fills a vacant seat. He received a bachelor’s degree from Rollins College. His term: Feb. 22-June 30, 2014.  Hogan, 45, succeeds Thomas Ruggie. Hogan, a member of the Florida Institute of CPAs and the Florida Bar Association, received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and a law degree from Notre Dame Law School. Term: Feb. 22-June 30, 2015.

Tristan Chapman, of LaBelle, and Julia Perry, of Moore Haven, to the Edison State College District Board of Trustees. Perry is being reappointed to the board. Chapman, 63, the vice president and general manager of Southern Gardens Citrus, succeeds Randall Parrish. He previously served as a commissioner on the Hendry County Board of County Commissioners and was a commissioner on the Florida Citrus Commission. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of South Florida. Term: Feb. 22-May 22, 2016.

A retired school librarian Perry, 71, received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Mississippi and also obtained a Florida Teaching Certificate. Both their terms are Feb. 22-May 22, 2016.

David Warriner, of Port St. Joe, to the Gulf Coast State College District Board of Trustees. Warriner, 48, the owner and president of Tapper & Co., was was previously a legislative assistant with the Florida House of Representatives and the Florida Senate. Warriner received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida. His term: Feb. 22-May 31, 2013.

Christina L. Pettie, William “Sandy” Quillen and Kay H. Tasso to the Board of Physical Therapy Practice. Pettie, 45, of Gainesville, is a physical therapist and clinical coordinator at Shands Rehab Center at Magnolia Parke. She fills a vacant seat. Term: Feb. 21-Oct. 31, 2016.

Quillen, 61, of Odessa, is an associate dean and director of the University of South Florida School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Services. He succeeds Madeleine A. Hellman. Term: Feb. 21, 2013-Oct. 31, 2014. Tasso, 52, of Ponte Vedra, is a physical therapist with Sensational Kids Therapy and Coastal Therapy. She fills a vacant seat. Term: Feb. 21-Oct.. 31, 2016.

All appointments are subject to confirmation by the Florida Senate.