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JAXUSA Partnership honors region’s international business leaders at quarterly luncheon

JAX Chamber’s economic development division, JAXUSA Partnership, formerly known as Cornerstone Regional Development Partnership, presented its International Awards at the JAXUSA Quarterly Luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront.

Every year, JAXUSA Partnership presents the International awards to recognize companies and individuals that are positively impacting international growth in Northeast Florida. The winners this year are:

•International Business Leader of the Year – Large Company: COACH, accepted by Omar Tovar, Vice President, Global Distribution

International Business Leader of the Year – Smaller Company: Beaver Street Fisheries, accepted by Mark Frisch, Vice President

International Business Leader of the Year – Individual: the Honorable Lake Ray, Florida House of Representatives

JAX Chamber International Chair and Holland & Knight Partner George Gabel was also honored for his invaluable service to the growth of international business in the region.

“We congratulate our International Award winners for their leadership as a global business partner,” said JAXUSA Partnership President Jerry Mallot. “Their success speaks directly to the strategic eastern seaboard location, excellent workforce and numerous business advantages that exist in our region, which is rapidly becoming a significant international business center.”

With the highest quality products in the industry worldwide, COACH received this award for its focus to increase international distribution and target international consumers. Beaver Street Fisheries, selected for its innovative and diverse business model, started small in the 1950s and is now a multi-dimensional producer, importer and distributor of frozen seafood with more than 400 employees. Rep. Lake Ray was chosen because of his leadership in executing and promoting international trade, including advocacy for the development of the port of Jacksonville and the logistics industry.

PGA TOUR commissioner Tim Finchem was the luncheon’s guest speaker. He spoke about the regional, national and international impact of THE PLAYERS Championship. Each year during the May tournament, more than 130,000 fans from around the world descend on Northeast Florida, creating an economic impact in excess of $150 million. More than 350 businesses from around the world invest in hospitality and sponsorship programs at the tournament.

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