Leadership Manatee Alumni Association

2018-2019 Board of Directors 

Jannon Pierce, President


Jannon Pierce is the Vice President, Resource Development, for Easter Seals Southwest Florida. Leaving behind a successful career as an executive with Capital One Financial Services, she relocated to Manatee County in 2005 and began volunteering at Bradenton Christian School (BCS). The non-profit sector in which she has volunteered and worked since her move has captured her heart. Her local journey has included stops at BCS in Admissions, Public Relations and Education Technology Director roles prior to her start at Easter Seals SWFL in 2014. Volunteerism is very important to her and includes Manatee Chamber’s Project Teach and Big Bank Theory programs, Take Stock in Children mentor, BCS Athletics online commentator, Night Under the Stars Board member, Woodland Early Childhood Center Board member and numerous community events. In her current role, the areas of responsibility include fundraising, marketing, human resources and community relations. Jannon is a 2016 graduate of the Leadership Manatee program and holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Averett University.



Nick Azzara, Vice President

Nick Azzara is a native of Clarksville, Tenn. He attended journalism school at the University of Tennessee and worked as a journalist over the first seven years of his career. He joined Manatee County Government in 2008. Nick is Manatee County’s public information officer and oversees information on the County television channel, its social media networks and on its website. He also oversees state legislative affairs for the Manatee County Commission. Nick married his lovely wife Tiffany in 2008 and they have two hilarious little boys, Andrew and Matthew.

Janet Samuels, Treasurer

Janet Samuels is an Associate Professor of Mathematics at the State College of Florida. She has been the advisor for the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society chapter at SCF since 2012 and is currently on the Faculty Senate Executive Board. In addition to her MA in Mathematics form USF in Tampa, she completed an MA in Online Teaching and Learning form USF-SM in May 2017. Janet moved to Manatee County in 2001. She currently resides in Palmetto with her husband and three children. Janet is a graduate of the Leadership Manatee Class of 2017 and she believes strongly in giving back to the community. She spends time with her children doing roadside clean ups, volunteering at Our Daily Bread, and served as registrar and compliance officer for a local Pop Warner youth football organization.

Renee Isrel, Secretary


Renée Isrel is the Chief Administrator Officer for  the Manatee County Public Safety Department.  Born and raised in Atlanta, Renée started her career in banking and finance before moving to Manatee County in 1991 where she began her work in public service.  Her responsibilities include planning, developing and directing major programs and projects for the Public Safety Department.   Renée is a 2017 graduate of Leadership Manatee and loves serving the community in which she lives.  Renée enjoys all the amenities the county has to offer, taking full advantage of its beautiful beaches, parks, preserves and museums. 

Cheryl Albright

Cheryl Albright is an occupational therapist and the owner of Soul To Soul Yoga, LLC/All Ages Therapy Services, DBA. She is a graduate of East Carolina University in 2003. Cheryl moved to Manatee County in 2015 and has been very active in the community. She serves on the board of directors for Manasota Family Network on Disabilities, current OT South Bay Forum president, active participant in the Developmental Disability subcommittee in Sarasota County, and disability subcommittee for the Department of Health at the state level. She currently resides in Bradenton with her husband. Cheryl is a graduate of the Leadership Manatee class of 2018. She has an older brother on the autism spectrum and continuously advocating not just for her brother but anyone with a disability for inclusion and acceptance in our community.

Daniel Anderson

Daniel Anderson is a CPA with Mauldin & Jenkins, specializing in Financial Statement Audits of Local Government and non-profit organizations. He is a graduate of Leadership Manatee’s 2017-2018 class. Daniel grew up in Bradenton, graduating from Manatee High School before attending college at the Florida State University (Go Noles!). In addition to the LMAA Board, Daniel also serves on the board of the Manatee County Seminole Club, is a member of the FICPA State & Local Government and Young CPA Committees, and is actively involved in Manatee County Younglife and in the youth ministry of Goodlife Church. Daniel loves spending time outdoors with his wife, Gina, and their son, Nolan.

Terri Behling

Terri Behling works at the Manatee Chamber of Commerce as the Vice President of Workforce and Community Development. Prior to joining the Chamber, she worked at the Southwest Florida Water Management District for 12 years in government relations. Terri was part of the 2007-2008 Leadership Manatee class and served as President of LMAA for two years. She is also heavily involved in the Florida Public Relations Association and served as President in 2016-2017. Terri is married to Chris Behling and they have two daughters, Allie and Marissa.



Tim Bingham

Tim moved to Manatee County in 1996 from Kentucky.  He has been working for Anna Maria Oyster since October of 2004.  He was the General Manager of the Ellenton location for seven years until he opened the newest location at Bridge street on Bradenton Beach.  He is the Managing Partner of the AMOB on the pier.  Tim is a new graduate of Leadership Manatee and excited to be involved with the LMAA Board.  He also sits on the Bridge Street Merchants board and is a member of the Anna Maria Chamber of Commerce.  Tim is the proud father of two children.

Amanda Broadway

Amanda has called Manatee County home since 2012. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and obtained her MBA at Nova Southeastern. From an entrepreneurial background, Amanda currently works in the tech and e-commerce industry. She loves giving back in the community through her involvement with The Junior League of Manatee County and serving at Bayside Community Church. Amanda's husband, Larry, is a Senior Director with the Pittsburgh Pirates, so you may spot her chasing around her two boys at LECOM Park quite frequently!

Christi Haley

Christi grew up in Plano, Texas and relocated to Manatee County with her husband in 1993.  Fresh out of college, she wanted to find a position where she could make an impact in the community – and decided to volunteer at Pace Center for Girls.  Instead of volunteering, she accepted a position and has served as the Special Projects Manager for over 25 years, helping to grow the small grass roots organization into an award-winning agency, earning the prestigious Chamber Non-Profit of the Year in 2017.   Christi specializes in fundraising, grant writing, budgeting, and database development – and will likely encourage you to adopt a duck for the Lucky Ducky Race for Pace!  Christi and Perry are also the proud parents of two adult children, Caitlyn and Randy.

George Kruse

George Kruse is Principal of Pursuit CRE, a commercial real estate firm focused primarily on workforce housing in Manatee and Sarasota counties. He grew up in Sarasota and moved to Manatee County in 2008. George graduated from University of Florida with a degree in Finance and received his MBA from Columbia Business School with a dual focus in finance and real estate. George is a graduate of the Leadership Manatee Class of 2018 and is active in both housing and child services in the area. He is currently on the City of Bradenton’s Affordable Housing Advisory Committee, the Chamber’s Attainable Housing Task Force and the Board for the Sarasota/Manatee Columbia Alumni Club. He spends his time volunteering with Junior Achievement, acting as team parent manager for his son’s travel hockey team and running all over town. George is married to Jessica, and their son and daughter both attend Johnson IB School in Bradenton.

Jim Lee

Jim Lee immigrated to the U.S. from the U.K. and grew up in Seattle. He received degrees from the University of Washington, University of Colorado and Nova-Southeastern University. He has worked in Washington, Alaska, and Florida. For 19 years he held Department Director positions with local governments in Florida coordinating building construction, land use planning, and real estate development. He was Building Director for Manatee County for eight years.

Jim has spent the past five years with the Peace Corps. Three years as Director of Management and Operations in China followed by short term assignments in Micronesia and the Philippines. He returned from Manila in June of this year.

His professional certifications include membership in the American Institute of Certified Planners and designation as a Certified Flood Plain Manager by the Association of Floodplain Managers.


Mike Ludwig

Mike, Business Banking Manager for Synovus, has been in financial services for over 20 years. Originally from North Carolina, he graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 1999 with a BA in Political Science. Mike moved to Manatee County from Orlando in 2015 and is a graduate of the 2016 Leadership Manatee class. He has served on a variety of boards including One Heart for Women and Children and the Manatee County Family YMCA. Mike is happily married with two awesome sons and enjoys watching Tar Heel basketball.

Timothy Wolfrum


An Ohio native, Tim moved to Bradenton in 2006. He has served as the Communications Director at Tidewell Hospice for almost four years. Before joining Tidewell, Tim was a veteran of the newspaper industry and worked at the Bradenton Herald for nine years, the final four as sports editor. A 2017 Leadership Manatee graduate, Tim is honored to serve on the LMAA board of directors. Tim and his wife, Kristin, now live in Parrish. They have two children and attend Parrish United Methodist Church.

Michael Wood


Michael Wood is the Development Director of Outcomes & Grants for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Manatee County. He has held progressively responsible positions within the Clubs since 2012. Michael is responsible for the administration of all public and private grants. He has been successful in bringing the Clubs more than a million dollars annually in operating revenue. He is gratified to be working for an organization that is committed to improving the lives of children within our community. Michael is a proud Buckeye. He was born, raised and educated in Columbus, Ohio. He holds degrees from Ohio State University; B.A. in Political Science focused on public policy development and a Master in City & Regional Planning. Michael wanted to start his planning career near a Florida beach. In 1989, Manatee County Government provided that opportunity and he quickly embraced all things strangely wonderful about living on the Gulf Coast. The majority of his professional planning career was with Manatee County, where he was the Comprehensive Planning Administrator. He is proud of his work within local government, helping to make Manatee County a better place to live, work and play. He twice oversaw the review and update of the Manatee County Comprehensive Plan, managed the county-wide visioning program; Imagine Manatee, led the development of the Affordable Housing Partnership Program, initiated the Community Development Block Grant Program and established the Neighborhood Enhancement Grant Program. He is a proud homeowner of a continuous renovation project: a 100-year-old Bradenton bungalow, complete with ghostly (now protective) spirits. When he is not repairing/improving his home, he and his husband enjoy the beach, their dog, the Rays, Florida Gator football and Ohio State football, not necessarily in that order. Michael is a graduate of the Leadership Manatee Class of 2018.

CONTACT US: lmaaboard@gmail.com

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