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Uncommon Friends Foundation elects new board members, executive committee

By Staff | Dec 23, 2020

The Uncommon Friends Foundation has elected three new board members and a new executive committee, just ahead of 2021.

Amy McQuagge, Marc Collins and Christopher Spiro will now sit on the board. Meanwhile, Spiro will also serve as secretary of the executive committee for one year.

Here is the complete committee list:

* Brian Rist (Storm Smart) – President

* Cole Peacock (RC Peacock Consulting) – Vice President

* Christopher Spiro (Spiro & Associates) – Secretary

* Tom Hoolihan (Southern Waters, Tommy Hoolihan’s Real Estate and Lifestyle, Riverbend Golf and River Club, Vision One Realty Group, Heritage Residential Group of Florida) – Treasurer

* Gary Eskin (Eskin Business Solutions) – Past President

McQuagge is vice president and director of marketing at Sanibel Captiva Community Bank, having obtained a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Southern College. Prior to guiding the bank’s marketing efforts, she managed marketing and events for the Lee County Economic Development Office. She also owned a full-service, exercise-based fundraising company and worked as a media buyer for several advertising firms. Earlier this year, she was elected to the board of Pace Center for Girls of Lee County.

Spiro launched The Spiro Group Inc. (now Spiro & Associates) in 1989. Going from art director, designer and creative director to chief creative officer, he owns and manages a full-service agency for industries like real estate, hospitality, government, medical and much more. Spiro holds leadership positions in many regional organizations, such as the Lee County Horizon Council, Chamber of Commerce of Cape Coral and Cape Coral Council for Progress. He also spearheaded renowned initiatives like SOS: Feed The Cape and Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southwest Florida’s Eat.Clay.Love. as well as donates his time and money to the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, etc. Spiro attended the University of Florida and is a highly active alum.

Originally from Athens, Alabama, Collins moved to Fort Myers in 2002 to work as a lead interior designer for Carroll Properties — the managing corporation for local hotels, restaurants and marinas. He simultaneously served as the company’s family representative for numerous nonprofits and community organizations. They include SalusCare, Gulf Coast Humane Society, Big Brothers-Big Sisters of the Sun Coast – Lee County, Lee Health Foundation and Valerie’s House, among others.

Starting in January, McQuagge, Spiro, Collins and their peers will help rebrand the Uncommon Friends Foundation as well as its speaker series, scholarship and awards programs, and events.

“These trusted leaders have spent decades raising the bar for their industries and neighboring organizations. There is no group more equipped, talented and dedicated than the one we’ve put together,” said Executive Director Jennifer Nelson. “In times of uncertainty, they are a guaranteed positive change, and we look forward to learning and benefitting from their expertise.”

 For more information, call 239-826-0556 or email jennifer@uncommonfriends.org.


About Uncommon Friends Foundation

Celebrating its 27th anniversary this year, the Uncommon Friends Foundation is dedicated to lifelong character-building among today’s youth and business leaders, as it inspires future leaders toward excellence of character, a spirit of innovation and a sense of purpose. It is located at the historic Burroughs Home & Gardens on the waterfront in downtown Fort Myers that offers a sheltered pavilion and dazzling water views for public and private events and year-round tours. For more information, call 239-337-9503 or visit https://uncommonfriends.org.