Written by Miami Today on October 10, 2002
NEW IBM CHIEF: Former IBM Brazil chief Bruno Di Leo was named general manager of the company’s Coral Gables-based Latin America division, replacing Donn B. Atkins, who will now serve as worldwide vice president for software sales and marketing. Mr. Di Leo started with the company 27 years ago and headed management posts for Peru, Andean Country operations and later Brazil. IBM Latin America operates in 20 countries throughout the region and employs about 10,000 people, 250 of whom are in South Florida.
ARTS CENTER FUNDING: The Performing Arts Center Foundation on Tuesday unveiled the next steps of its 8-year-long fundraising campaign, a video pitching the project to donors and Musical Chairs, a program that sells donors selected seats in the arts center when it opens in the 2004-05 season. At a lunch at the Renaissance Miami Biscayne Bay Hotel, Tony Burns told guests the new program would offer assigned seats for donations ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 in a complex lottery. The earlier fundraising program, Premier Seating, had a floor of $50,000.
HOW MANY YEARS?: While the arts center fundraising at the 8-year mark has brought in pledges of $50,000, the goal now has been raised to $80,000, lunch guests were told. Reflecting the long-standing effort to fund the two buildings on Biscayne Boulevard, Sherwood Weiser, chairman of the Performing Arts Center Foundation Board of Directors, drew a laugh when he greeted guests by saying, "Welcome to what I think is the 43rd annual meeting of the Performing Arts Center."
SHOW ME THE MONEY: The City of Miami needs tangible prove the project to relocate and expand the Miami Museum of Science and Space Transit Planetarium in Bicentennial Park is significantly funded before the city will releases the $3.5 million matching funds it allocated from Miami bonds, City Manager Carlos Gimenez says. He said he met recently with Bob McCammon, recently appointed interim president of the museum, and delivered that message. Museum officials refused to comment Tuesday.
EXTENDED RUN: Coconut Grove Playhouse directors extended to Oct. 31 the deadline to submit resumes to fill the new executive director job. The board hired Lydia Harrison & Associates to conduct the search. The position would split off management of the financially challenged venue and leave Producing Artistic Director Arnold Mittelman, who has been running the playhouse since 1985, handling programming. Qualifications include a master’s in a related field or a combination of education and experience in business, development, finance, public relations, marketing or theater management. The executive director is to develop and implement strategic plans and manage day-to-day business.
CORAL WAY BEAUTY: Miami commissioners Tomás Regalado and Joe Sanchez will discuss plans to enhance Coral Way between Southwest 1st and 37th avenues. in a 6 p.m. community meeting Oct. 15 at Our Lady of Lebanon Church banquet hall, 2055 Coral Way. They will present a preliminary version of the Coral Way Beautification Master Plan & Design Standards and hear feedback. Details: (305) 416-1445.
WHERE HOUSED: 3 PL of The Americas Inc., a third-party warehousing and distribution firm, just leased 138,000 square feet of warehouse and office space at the Beacon Centre in Miami, said Brian Smith with Alliance Commercial Real Estate Group, the tenant’s broker. AMB Property Corp., the landlord of the space at 8501 NW 17th St. secured a tenant for 10 years, he said.
DEMOLITION IN DADELAND: After its $22 million purchase of the former Williamson Cadillac site near Dadeland Mall, Gulfside Development will demolish buildings there by month’s end with plans to begin work on the $150 million mixed-use Downtown Dadeland in early 2003. The 7.5-acre site is bound by North Kendall Drive to the north, South Dadeland Boulevard to the west and US 1 to the south and east. Downtown Dadeland will include 416 residential units spread across seven low-rise buildings and 120,000 square feet of retail. According to sales agent Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell, the residential units are more than 60% sold. Williamson Cadillac occupied the site nearly three decades.
ALL ABOARD: Greyhound Travel Services is launching tour operations in South Florida’s tri-county area. The company recently acquired Gray Line Southern Florida as one of 30 charter brands operating within its portfolio. Gordon Barr, GTS president, said the merger of the two names will offer travelers daily tours of Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, Orlando and the Everglades. He said company brochures will promote local destinations and users will be able to book tours to Miami-Dade County via the company’s website by month’s end. Details: 1-800-425-0053 or (786) 425-2800.
YMCA LEADERSHIP: Alfred Sanchez, who had been director of government and community relations for Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises and who first came to Miami as an executive of the American Red Cross, has been named president and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Miami. The United Way is holding a reception from 6-8:30 p.m. Oct. 17 at the Don Shula Hotel, 6842 Main St., Miami Lakes, to welcome him. Details: (305) 825-9622.