Seniors Moving Forward and Jamie Reminisces About Lakeland on this #WorkingWomenWednesday Featuring Rita Rodriguez, Ira Anderson, Jessica Rivelli, Gabby Soriano and Kara Barr

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Opening up the program today was Rita Rodriguez, Senior Move Manager and Owner of Seniors Moving Forward. Rita has been a Senior Move Manager for over 6 years and is a member of The National Association of Senior Move Managers. In short, she helps primarily seniors and their families with relocating, decluttering, downsizing and finding places for unwanted items.  Seniors Moving Forward is also a great resource for many other related services. Working closely with family attorneys, guardians and case managers makes for a smooth transition when assisting Seniors with downsizing or moving into assisted living facilities. Rita also actively volunteers and has been involved in community service since the age of 12 and today volunteers her time with Santas for Seniors where Seniors receive gifts from volunteers around the community. Rita understands the complexities of working with seniors during a move and talks about some of the nuances she understands such as the attachment to pictures or collections and how little things can affect them emotionally. Reach out to her today at or via phone at 813-748-5562!

Our next guest was Ira Anderson – Director with the International Accounting and Assurance firm, BDO. Ira joined BDO in 2015 and has over 25 years of public accounting experience. As an assurance director, he devotes his time to providing audit, review, compilation, financial advisory and tax services to clients predominately in the central Florida area. He has served nonprofit organizations, as well as privately held companies in manufacturing, distribution, construction, retail, service and private equity group sectors. Prior to joining BDO, Ira served as an assurance partner for Crowe Horwath in Lakeland, Florida. Ira and Jamie talked briefly about the BDO model but quickly digressed into a community talk focusing on Lakeland. Jamie first moved to Florida in 1996 to attend Florida Southern College in Lakeland so Jamie has strong ties to the community too. Ira talked about how Lakeland has developed over the past two decades and the Catapult group which works to keep economic development moving in Lakeland. They touched on the role of Millennials in Lakeland and they share a funny exchange about The Rocky Horror Picture Show of all things. Jamie reminisces about his days as a Fraternity brother in Pi Kappa Phi too during the segment while a student at Florida Southern College and we learn that Jamie is a vandal and not always so professional – tune in to hear more On Demand at or on iTunes. Find out more about BDO at!

At 8am it was #WorkingWomenWednesday where we feature the members of one of Tampa’s most influential networking groups, The Working Women of Tampa Bay. Jessica Rivelli checked in with us to discuss the upcoming Working Women Conference being held September 8th and 9th at the Straz Center. She mentioned a few of the speakers (out of the 28+ being featured) including that of Melissa Dohme who will be speaking on domestic violence. Her story will strike an emotional cord as she survived an attack from her ex-boyfriend in which she received 32 stab wounds and barely survived. Her survival is truly a miracle and she will be just one of the many featured speakers at the conference. Be sure to use promo code Meloni for 10% off of the ticket and register at!

Our next guest on the program was Gabby Soriano, Marketing Director with Hyde Park Village which is owned by WS Development. Hyde Park Village, located on Swann Ave in South Tampa, is a booming area right now with new Restaurants Goody Goody and On Swann recently opening and much more development in the Village on the horizon. Jamie, along with co-host Stella Giudicelli, talked about the shops and appeal of the community which is anchored by many stores including L.A. Fitness and Timpanos as well as the CineBistro! The development is poised to become a huge attraction in South Tampa, successfully rebounding from the downturn result from the opening of the International Plaza which is also discussed on this segment. There is still some vacancy too in the Village so if you are a business owner looking for an entry point into South Tampa, consider Hyde Park Village as an option. Find out more at or reach out to Gabby today at 813-464-6042!

Closing out the show was Kara Barr, Owner of Whiskey Bent Barbeque Supply located at 2401 Merchant Ave in Odessa, Florida. This company is your one-stop shop for anything and everything related to barbequing. Kara opened the location just over 6 months ago and sales are booming with this niche business. From sauces and rubs to grills and aprons, they have anything you need to have a great barbeque! The business, franchised and founded out of Lakeland, is a unique concept and Jamie elaborates on how he wishes he knew of the store earlier. Many people pick up barbeque supplies from their local grocer but Whiskey Bent takes it to the next level. They have over 120 sauces in stock and top of the line grills plus they give classes on how to barbeque! BBQ is an art form. As such it is open to much interpretation. A true connoisseur is always looking for new ways to perfect his or her craft. For that reason, Whiskey Bent – Odessa hosts BBQ classes that teach new skills and tricks from competitors who practice their craft at competitions across the country.  They have an upcoming customer appreciation day this weekend and Kara stresses the family environment in the store, how they know their customers by name. Find them online at or give them a call today at 727-375-1901!

Rita RodriguezIra AndersonJessica Rivelli (Small)Gabby SorianoKara Barr