Nina Howell has joined First Southern Bank as vice president and market manager of its Community Banking Group in the North Florida Region and will be based in the Ponte Vedra Beach office. Howell is a business specialist who has served the Mandarin/Julington Creek community for 15 years. Before joining First Southern Bank, she served as a branch sales manager at Florida Capital Bank in Jacksonville, where she was responsible for new business development and overseeing the recruiting, hiring, training and coaching of the bank’s sales teams.
Cathedral Arts Project’s Best of the Best student art exhibit is on display at the Duval County Courthouse at 501 W. Adams St. through the end of the month. The artwork was created by Cathedral Arts students from nine public schools in Duval County and incorporates visions of America and its treasures. Cathedral Arts provides free after-school and summer arts education to 1,800 students each year. For more information, visit capkids.org.
The University of North Florida on Tuesday dedicated its University Center in honor of Adam Herbert (right), the university’s third president, during a presentation. The building will be renamed the Adam W. Herbert University Center. According to a release, during Herbert’s tenure from 1989-1998, the university exceeded the 10,000 student mark in 1995 and also saw an increase in private funding. He returned to UNF in 2003 to become the founding executive director of The Florida Center for Public Policy and Leadership. Among those in attendance for the ceremony were Mayor Alvin Brown (left), UNF President John Delaney and UNF board of trustees member Rad Lovett.
• Mayor Alvin Brown has accepted a $649,762 Arrest Grant from the U.S. Government’s Office on Violence Against Women. The award is a continuation of funding under the same grant, amounting to just under $1.4 million. The grant will allow the City to work with the Fourth Judicial Circuit, the state attorney’s office and Hubbard House Inc. to establish a domestic violence court docket and extend elements of the program for another two years.
• The inaugural Community First Saturdays, organized by the JAX Chamber, is 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday on the Northbank Riverwalk behind the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts. Family-friendly activities include free fitness classes from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. There are also interactive art, bike activities and high-jump and long-jump activities manned by members of the Jacksonville Jaguars. In addition, expect new features on the first Saturday of each month. Also, “Community East” will have food trucks and a café, open from 11 a.m. to dusk in the old county courthouse parking lot. For more information, visit its Facebook page, CommunityFirstSaturdays, or the event blog at communityfirstsaturdays.com.
• Firehouse Subs has begun its annual fundraising initiative in support of Fire Safety Month to raise funds for the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation, a nonprofit inspired by the co-founders’ 200 years of family firefighting heritage. The monthlong fundraiser allows patrons to purchase $1 and $5 medallions at all 534 restaurants. Guests who purchase a medallion will receive a free 9-volt battery for their home smoke detector while supplies last.
• North Florida Land Trust is moving its offices today to 804 Third St., Suite D, in Neptune Beach. Call 285-7020 or visit northfloridalandtrust.org.
• Communities In Schools of Jacksonville also is on the move. The nonprofit dedicated to dropout prevention is relocating to 1 Riverside Ave., Suite 400, which is The Florida Times-Union building. Its new phone number is 366-6350.
• Stellar, a Jacksonville-based design, engineering, construction and mechanical services firm, will begin three new projects this quarter. Two projects will be for the Army and one will be for the Marines. During that time, it will also complete two other military facilities. More information is available at stellar.net.
• Pepper Lindsey was the recipient of the 2012 Jacksonville Film Industry Award and producer Brenda Egedy-Kolb and director Warren Skeels were presented with the 2012 Rising Star Award at the Jacksonville Film Industry Reception in September. Lindsey’s portfolio includes reality programs, travel shows, commercial campaigns, feature films and television movies. She founded Lindsey Films Inc. with husband and business partner, Kent Lindsey, in 1987. More information can be found at filmjax.com.
• The City’s Information Technologies Division is receiving an honorable mention from Government Computer News for “Outstanding Information Technology Achievement in Government.” The award recognizes the City’s JaxReady mobile application, which launched in May. It is one of 10 of the magazine’s Honorable Mentions selected from more than 130 nominations. Staff will be recognized at the 2012 GCN Awards
Gala on Oct. 24 in McLean, Va.
• The associate director of Dreams Come True, Lauren Weedon Hopkins, has accepted a position with the YMCA of Florida's First Coast and will start Oct. 15. She has worked with the nonprofit, which is dedicated to fulfilling dreams of children battling life-threatening illnesses, since 2007. John Brent will join the nonprofit Oct. 15 as interim executive director.
• The University of North Florida has selected four community leaders and an organization to receive the Presidential Medallion, the highest form of nonacademic recognition awarded by the university to those who have helped guide it. This year's honorees are Lawrence DuBow, Mel and Debbie Gottlieb, Susan Ryzewic and the World Affairs Council of Jacksonville.
• Jacksonville University recognizes Susan Tyler as the winner of its first Online RN to BSN Honor Scholarship. Tyler, of Jacksonville, is a registered nurse in the field of radiation oncology. As the recipient of the Fall I, 2012 session scholarship, she will receive 25 percent off tuition for all JU online RN to BSN nursing classes until she completes her degree. JU will award six scholarships each year to first-time students in the RN to BSN 100 percent online program. Applicants must have a 3.4 GPA or higher upon applying to JU and maintain at least a 3.4 GPA through graduation. Applications are accepted through Monday for the Fall II, 2012 session scholarship.
• Actress and philanthropist Jane Seymour will visit St. Vincent’s HealthCare Riverside campus Friday in support of Kids Together Against Cancer, a St. Vincent’s support group for families who have a parent facing a cancer diagnosis. Seymour will visit with affected families during a reception and then attend a private event where her artwork will be available for purchase. A portion of the event’s proceeds will benefit the Kids Together program.
• The Blood Alliance is partnering with area Walgreens in a community competition to help raise awareness of the need for blood. The winning store will celebrate with a community lunch. Those interested in taking part can visit select locations on Monday. To make an appointment to donate, visit igiveblood.com or call (888) 998-2243. For more information about Monday’s blood battle, call 444-2831.
• The Governor’s Commission on Community Service, Volunteer Florida, will visit John E. Ford Elementary School today for a presentation and site visit, which will feature Duval Reads and Teach for America – two AmeriCorps programs administered by the commission. Duval Reads AmeriCorps members provide reading and tutoring services to students from kindergarten to eighth grade. Members also participate in community events to promote, encourage and support family and adult literacy. Teach for America – Jacksonville AmeriCorps members serve as full-time teachers in K-12 classrooms in Duval County. The program recruits recent college graduates and young professionals to serve two-year terms as public school teachers in most underserved schools.