The Nassau County Sheriff’s Office has just launched our new Autism Decal Program. Sheriff Bill Leeper said the decals are a way to let first responders better assist those with autism. When a deputy pulls over a vehicle and/or has to respond to a residence and they see the sticker either on the back window of the vehicle or near the front door of the home it will alert law enforcement that there is potentially an occupant with autism inside. Our deputies receive specialized training related to the unique characteristics, behaviors, and needs of people with autism, who sometimes have difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication and social interaction or may wander off. With this knowledge, deputies will be better able to communicate and interact with our citizens and calm them in stressful situations. These decals are also free to our community members who have someone in their family with autism. The Nassau County Sheriff’s also offers scent kits which can help our bloodhounds track down an autistic person who may go missing. It stores that person’s scent so they can quickly be found. You can pick up your decal and fill out the registration form at the Nassau County Sheriff's Office.
“As sheriff, I am excited about this decal program and I am proud of the continued efforts of the men and women of the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office to meet the needs of our entire community,” Sheriff Bill Leeper said.
The Nassau County Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce new programs and events for 2023! We are dedicated to providing programming and resources that will help members grow their businesses, and new programs are just the latest in the Chamber’s ongoing efforts to actively listen to the needs of the business community and provide innovative solutions.
Here’s what you need to know about the refreshed, reimagined, and reenergized Chamber programming for 2023:
With the goal of strengthening county-wide connections, Westside LunchMob will offer members a chance for short introductions and networking over lunch while showing support for our area restaurants. Monthly Coffee & Connections and Business After Hours events promise the perfect setting for engaging opportunities like speed networking, business showcases, and prompted icebreakers, with door-prizes up for grabs, too. Monthly Geographic Council Meetings are back and will feature top-notch speakers who will discuss various topics such as growth, infrastructure, and the business development in specific geographic areas of Nassau County.
For those looking for more specialized events tailored towards their professional or business needs, the Chamber offers curated events, including a Health and Wellness Collaborative, which brings practitioners together, and seeks to grow awareness and wellness between health-related businesses in Nassau County. The Nonprofit Roundtable is a unique opportunity for Chamber of Commerce members to collaborate with their peers while finding resources that can help sustain their organizations. Female business owners have the chance to join Girl Boss, a group dedicated to enriching female leadership in our community and providing a safe space for female business owners to seek support from one another on the challenges and successes of entrepreneurship. EmpowHER! Luncheons, created for professional women in any industry, will be hosted quarterly with a focus on providing enriching discussions about growth and leadership. Finally, Work Labs will be offered monthly with varying certified professionals available for one-on-one assistance with topics like social media, Canva, QuickBooks, SEO, and more.
The Nassau County Chamber of Commerce is committed to helping its members succeed by providing educational opportunities and access to valuable resources. If you are a business owner or professional looking for ways to get more connected within your community, we encourage you to attend one (or all) of these valuable networking opportunities. To register and learn more about upcoming programs and events, please visit the Chamber event calendar or email us at info@NassauCountyFLChamber.com.
The Nassau County Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce that Steve Wylie, Associate Vice President of Planning & Business Development for UF Health, will be the Chairman of the Nassau County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors for 2023.
Steve Wylie received his Bachelor of Science & Finance from the University of South Carolina and has been with UF Health since 2017. He has over 30 years’ experience in healthcare management, including executive positions with 21st Century Oncology, Regional Care Hospital Partners, and Health Management Associates. Steve is passionate about furthering the interests of businesses in Nassau County and looks forward to working with fellow Board members to bring lasting and meaningful change to our business community.
“I am incredibly proud to be the incoming Chairman of the Nassau County Chamber of Commerce and look forward to working alongside regional leaders to carefully craft the future of our county,” said Wylie. “I look forward to addressing critical issues, including workforce development, mobility, affordability, and infrastructure. I am committed to working alongside the Chamber’s member businesses through thoughtful collaboration and will continue to provide our membership with unsurpassed value as the premier advocate and resource for businesses throughout Nassau County.”
In addition, the Chamber has announced the Chairman-Elect for 2024 will be Apollo Wright, Publisher of Amelia/Yulee Neighbors. Apollo received a master’s degree in Elementary Education and Teaching from Wagner College and went on to coach college football at various institutions including Florida International University and The University of New Mexico. He is currently the head football coach for Fernandina Beach High School. Apollo is looking forward to bringing the Nassau County business community together and continuing his community service efforts.
The Chamber will also welcome Kimberly Branham-Nelson, CEO of Nelson and Associates Insurance, and Joseph Zimmerman, Owner of The Zimmerman Group, to the Board of Directors. To view the current Nassau County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, CLICK HERE.
The Nassau County Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards process is an opportunity to highlight the impact of outstanding businesses and entrepreneurs throughout Nassau County and we want to congratulate every business, organization and business leader that received a nomination this year.
Award winners will be announced at the Annual Awards Dinner & Gala on Thursday, February 2, 2023. For questions or more information about the nomination process, please contact the Chamber at info@NassauCountyFLChamber.com or (904) 261-3248.
To purchase tickets to the Annual Awards Dinner & Gala, CLICK HERE.
And the nominees are...
LARGE BUSINESS OF THE YEAR
First Federal Bank
First Port City Bank
Summer House Realty
MEDIUM BUSINESS OF THE YEAR
Franklin Equipment Sales
Nelson and Associates Insurance
Story & Song Bookstore Bistro
Wallace Pierson Travel
SMALL BUSINESS OF THE YEAR
A Passion 4 Pooches Pet Spa
Amelia Island Kayak Excursions
Barefoot Amelia Beach Rentals
BizBolster Web Solutions LLC
Destination Amelia Vacation Rentals
Disco Witch Brewing
Dorco Enterprises CPA Firm
Eagleye Printing, Framing & More
Follow That Dream Sailing
Knowell's Lock and Safe Inc.
Luxe Picnics by Les LLC
Mead's Framery and Trophy Store
Pam Bell Photography
Perfect Wick Candle Makery & Bar
Pet Wants Amelia Island
Redbones Dog Bakery and Boutique
The Resale Project
BUSINESS LEADER OF THE YEAR
Kellie Boston | Boston Photography
Bud Braiser | Follow That Dream Sailing
Greg Cook | The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island
Ryan Deems | Destination Amelia Vacation Rentals
Shelly Denis | Disco Witch Brewing
Leslie Diaz | Luxe Picnics by Les LLC
Bob Hartman | Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island
Ed Hubel | Baptist Medical Center Nassau
Stephanie Newberry | AquaGym Fitness
Lori Osborne | BizBolster Web Solutions LLC
Jennifer Panke | Blue Ocean Title
James & Jenny Schaffer | Summer House Realty
Nathalie Wu | Wicked BAO
YOUNG BUSINESS LEADER OF THE YEAR
Bradley Bean | RYAM
Heather Bennett | Paisley Grace Makery
Katie Connors | Nelson and Associates Insurance
Chason Forehand | Pineland Bank
Marty Greye | Culver's
Carl Lindsey | Perfect Wick Candle Makery & Bar/Select Tronix
Justin Taylor | Residence Inn by Marriott Amelia Island
Stephanie Triola | New York Life
Chelsea Waldron | Amelia Island Vacations
CUSTOMER SERVICE PROFESSIONAL OF THE YEAR
Kellie Boston | Boston Photography
Carol "Celeste" Christian | Hampton Inn & Suites Historic Harborfront Hotel
Stephanie Dinius | Amelia Art Studio
Ann Dorsey | Dorco Enterprises CPA Firm
Jan Lacovelli | L. Moore Aesthetics
Bob & Carmen Lyon | Island Promos
Michael Mayhan | Outer Banks Boil Company
Stacy Millett | Wicked BAO
Lana Miltenberger | Launch Printing & Promotions
Leah Parker | Paisley Grace Makery
Lisa Sanborn | First Federal Bank
Madison Tipton | Amelia Island Kayak Excursions
Robin Turner | Nelson and Associates Insurance
Savanna Varney | Nelson and Associates Insurance
NONPROFIT OF THE YEAR
$1,000 Start-Ups Consortium
Barnabas Center, Inc.
Care Centers of Nassau
Fernandina Beach Main Street
Fernandina Beach Pride, Inc.
Northeast Florida Fair Association
Rotary Club of Fernandina Beach
Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare
The Arc Nassau
'Give the Gift' of Local
From November 17th-December 31st, we're celebrating small, local businesses and promoting our 'Give the Gift' of Local campaign. The Nassau County Chamber of Commerce is encouraging every person in our community to support friends and neighbors by shopping, dining, and exploring local.
Local Businesses are a Big Deal to Nassau County
Small, local businesses made up over 60% of all new jobs this year, but consistently face challenges from rising costs to filling vacancies and everything in between. On average, $68 of every $100 spent locally stays in our community. Shopping small can make a big difference, so join us and pledge to support local this holiday season. Simply print out the shop local pledge, take a photo of you holding the sign and/or take a selfie holding it, and share on social media. If we all make the pledge to shop small, imagine the difference we can make to our local economy!
If you're a small business owner, we'd like to help you be a part of the 'Give the Gift' of Local campaign:
Members of the Nassau County Chamber of Commerce:
Please take 10 minutes to provide your feedback and help us improve our membership services and benefits. Chamber member respondents will be treated to 'sammies' (sandwiches) in November as well as entered to win prizes. Only current employees of Chamber of Commerce members are asked to complete the survey.
By answering these questions and providing feedback, we can all work together to ensure the Chamber is fulfilling your specific business needs. The survey will be open until Friday, October 28, 2022. If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact the Chamber at info@NassauCountyFLChamber.com or (904) 261-3248. To complete the survey, click below.
The Nassau County Board of County Commission is working with the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) on a Broadband Availability Map and a speed test to identify broadband internet service availability throughout the state. Participation in this internet speed test will help Nassau County and the state of Florida identify gaps in high-speed internet service.
The Broadband Availability Map identifies a location’s speed, connectivity, and access to broadband services. These insights allow the state of Florida to better identify and reach unserved and underserved areas of the state. The map will be an asset to local communities and internet service providers to assist with broadband planning efforts.
As part of DEO’s efforts to encourage public participation collaboration and ensure a high level of transparency, the Florida Broadband Availability Map will be continuously updated on the webpage. Please note that the map is not complete and will continue to be updated as more data is added and changes in broadband availability are identified.
DEO is enlisting the help of the public to take an internet speed test to assist in further developing Florida's Broadband Availability Map. Your participation will help the state of Florida identify gaps in high-speed internet service in order to advance the state’s overall broadband infrastructure expansion goals. Using your internet connection, the speed test will measure the speed of internet transmission between your device and an outside server. The speed test can be completed using any device that has an internet or cellular connection and takes less than one minute to complete. After taking the speed test, you will receive immediate results from your test. Results will populate the map once you complete the speed test and will include your download, upload, latency, and ping speeds. The data collected from your internet’s speed test will be displayed on the Florida Broadband Availability Map in real time.
To take the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s speed test, please click the following link: DOE SPEED TEST.
Callie's On The River, located at 181040 Autumn Road in Hilliard, is celebrating its Grand Opening tomorrow, Saturday, October 15th!
There will be sheep feeding, magnet fishing, dock fishing, tours, delicious food and much more! Attendees will also have a chance to win a free weeknight stay in one of the brand new cabins. To learn more, click the event below or visit www.CalliesOnTheRiver.com.
The Chamber's Annual Awards Dinner & Gala, scheduled for Thursday, February 2, 2023, is our biggest and most prestigious event of the entire year.
Every Chamber member has the unique opportunity to decorate a table at the event, allowing their business or organization to be seen by hundreds of Gala attendees. From pirate-themed tables (complete with treasure, of course), to tables with a candy tower centerpiece that even Willy Wonka would envy, we've seen it all! Signing up to decorate a table is free and only costs what members are willing to put in to the decorations.
Click below to download a table decorating form today. Need ideas? Scroll down to view photos of table decorations from previous years or email info@NassauCountyFLChamber.com for more information.
PLEASE NOTE: Space is extremely limited and tables will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. Your table is NOT reserved until you have returned the completed form to the Chamber, either in-person or via email.
Nassau County has two shelters opening at 12:00 p.m. today. They are as follows:
Special Needs Shelter:
Hilliard Middle Senior High
1 Flashes Drive
Hilliard, FL 32046
General Population and Pet Friendly:
Callahan Middle School
450121 Old Dixie Highway
Callahan, FL 32033
If you are planning to go to the Special Needs Shelter, please ensure that you have completed the special needs registration through the Department of Health. They can be reached at 888-353-8387. You can also register online at https://snr.flhealthresponse.com/. If you have already registered, you will be contacted by the Department of Health.
Everyone visiting a shelter should be prepared to bring:
Bus routes/transportation has been established. Please see graphic below for details. If you need special accommodates to ride a bus, please call Emergency Management at (904) 548-0910.
Please continue to remain vigilant and follow public safety announcements. They can be heard on NOAA Weather Radio; Local radio stations 89.9 FM, 104.5 FM and 690 AM; and local news stations Channels 4, 12, 30 and 47.
Information related to the storm can also be found at www.OneNassau.com. Follow Emergency Management on social media at Nassau EM or at www.twitter.com/NassauEM.
If you have any questions, please contact Nassau County Emergency Management at (904) 548-0900.
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