Published July 2021
Welcome to FLCAJ’s third summer “Leaders in the Industry” special. These professionals—men and women alike—have made a positive impact on the community association industry in Florida, especially during the past year’s COVID-19 pandemic, and they have each made a difference in their respective fields. They are deserving of our congratulations and recognition.
8200 NW 33 St., Suite 300
Miami, FL 33122
Trycia Arencibia, CPA, LCAM, manages the finance and technology departments of KW PROPERTY MANAGEMENT & CONSULTING, one of Florida’s largest residential property management companies, with more than 1,850 employees and 90,000 units under management. Ms. Arencibia has been an integral member of KWPMC since 2005, ensuring that all association clients receive accurate, dependable, and timely financial reporting.
Arencibia also helps community board members thoroughly understand the financial reports provided and leads the implementation and operation of the firm’s diverse software portfolio and cutting-edge technology. Prior to joining KWPMC, Arencibia was an auditor with accounting firm Berkowitz Dick Pollack & Brant.
400 South Dixie Highway, Suite 420
Boca Raton, FL 33432
Keith F. Backer is the managing partner of Backer Aboud Poliakoff & Foelster LLP. He is Florida Bar board certified in condominium and planned development law and has provided legal services to hundreds of community association clients in Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties over the last three decades. Formerly a partner in the largest community association law firm in Florida, he started his own law firm in 1995 to focus his practice on providing counsel to community associations that prefer the personalized service and continuity of counsel larger law firms may be unable to provide. In 2015, the firm added the expertise of three other seasoned community association lawyers. The firm has continued to grow and currently has eight lawyers representing associations throughout Palm Beach, Broward, St. Lucie, and Miami-Dade Counties.
Roberto C. Blanch has focused on community association law since 2001, and he is board certified as a specialist in condominium and planned development law by the Florida Bar. He focuses on covenant enforcement, interpretation of governing documents, vendor contract negotiation and drafting, amending governing documents, preparing for and attending board and membership meetings, elections and recalls, collections, fair housing issues, and insurance claims. He also assists associations undertaking the turnover process, guiding them on the hiring of experts and representing them in construction defect claims.
Blanch previously served as a member of the boards of directors of the Southeast Florida Chapter of the Community Associations Institute and the Spanish American League Against Discrimination. He speaks regularly at state-approved board member certification courses and educational seminars, and he is a frequent contributor to the firm’s association law blog at www.FloridaHOALawyerBlog.com.
5523 W. Cypress Street #102
Tampa, FL 33607
Annette is the senior vice president overseeing RealManage’s operations in Florida and is responsible for 70-plus communities, ranging in size from 17 condominiums to 1,550 single-family homes. With 29 years of experience in managing communities, she has been a professional portfolio manager of common interest communities for the past 24 years. Annette is a state licensed community association manager and holds both the CMCA and PCAM designations from CAI. Her roles have included setting strategy, operational business management, and supervising and mentoring other CAMs. Her experience extends to training and education, development and oversight of company policies and procedures, and client retention efforts. Over the years, Annette has been a frequent speaker and educator on industry-related topics and issues.
1 East Broward Boulevard, Suite 1800
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
Kenneth S. Direktor serves as Chair of Becker’s Community Association Practice—a group comprised of 50-plus attorneys throughout Florida and New Jersey. Ken focuses his practice on the representation of condominium, homeowners, cooperative associations, and country clubs. Under his auspices, Becker was the first to launch electronic voting software BeckerBALLOT as well as MyCommunitySite.com, a best-in-class community association website development service. In addition, Ken oversaw the creation of Association Adjusting, a public adjusting company created to efficiently and effectively resolve community association property insurance claims. Ken continues to follow in the footsteps of the firm’s founders who “wrote the law” governing the operation of community associations. His passion for the industry and Florida’s communities is unending and remains evident in his lifelong role as attorney, professor, speaker, and advocate.
West Palm Beach, FL 33409
Diana is vice president with Seacrest Services, overseeing the Century Village Division in both West Palm Beach and Deerfield Beach. With over 28 years’ experience in community association management, Diana runs two of the largest 55 and over communities in South Florida—combined, these two communities have over 437 associations and 11,168 units.
As vice president of the CV Operations, Diana continues her efforts to team build, including coaching and developing her team to providing consistent high-quality services. Diana facilitates safety training with her employees on the job site as well as offers continuing education for each department.
Before joining Seacrest, Diana served in the United States Army and was an instructor for Vincennes University’s Adult Basic Education Program.
Diana has lived in South Florida for over 30 years and currently resides in West Palm Beach.
251 NW 23 St.
Miami, FL 33127
Kristen E. Ferrer is an associate at Haber Law. She represents condominium and homeowners associations, counseling clients on all aspects of community association matters, including collections and foreclosures, elections, vendor and service provider agreements, arbitration disputes, and enforcement of governing documents and applicable Florida Statutes, Codes, and Regulations. She also works closely with and provides legal support and advice to boards of directors and managers. She attended the University of Central Florida for her undergraduate studies, earning a bachelor of science in criminal justice and corrections with a minor in sociology. After college, Ms. Ferrer returned home to Miami to attend the University of Miami School of Law. Ms. Ferrer has been a practicing attorney since 2015.
6972 Lake Gloria Boulevard
Orlando, FL 32809
Rebecca started Leland Management more than 20 years ago, growing the company to over 500 employees and serving more than 140,000 homeowners throughout Florida. She is a pioneer in her profession and an advocate for the community association management industry. She is involved in implementing and maintaining high standards of professionalism for association management, both at Leland and throughout Florida. Rebecca has held many leadership roles in the association management community and has developed an excellent reputation for herself and Leland based on honesty, respect, trust, and customer service. A true leader, Rebecca takes an active role in all aspects of the company and leads by example. Through her leadership, Rebecca has instilled a culture of positivity and teamwork, resulting in Leland receiving multiple accolades such as TOP 100, Readers’ Choice Awards winner, and Best Places to Work 10 years in a row!
50 Castilian Dr.
Goleta, CA 93117
Beth Gilbert is the Sr. Director of the community association market at AppFolio and its all-in-one association management software. Beth brings over 15 years of product experience to AppFolio and is currently responsible for developing the vision and strategy for the association market. She is passionate about building relationships with customers to learn about new ways to partner in the success of their businesses. You can read Beth’s articles in various association management publications and join her in webinars where she is often joined by industry experts to discuss a variety of topics.
1220 SW 3rd Street, Suite 200
Plantation, FL 33324
Jordan is the “brains behind the brand” at Castle Group. Often described as having an infectious personality, he is an incredibly dynamic, energetic, and versatile leader. He brings over 20 years of real estate development, project management, property management, and leadership experience to Castle. Prior to joining Castle, he held numerous leadership positions for one of the nation’s largest homebuilders, leading the Florida team to several first place JD Power award finishes. In his present role as executive vice president, he leads Castle Group’s branding, marketing, sales, and strategic growth initiatives. Since joining the company in 2012, Castle has experienced record year-over-year growth in revenue, market share, and brand recognition.
For the past five years he has served on the Foundation Board of Families First of Palm Beach County, and he currently serves as vice president. Jordan holds a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Central Florida and is also a licensed community association manager.
Jeffrey Green is a Martindale Hubbell “AV” rated member of Kaye Bender Rembaum P.L. who has a broad range of experience in the areas of civil litigation, complex and commercial litigation, construction litigation, arbitration, and appeals. Mr. Green supervises the construction and complex litigation division of the firm and routinely represents community associations in multimillion dollar construction defect disputes, construction and accounting turnover claims involving the transition of control of community associations from developers to the non-developer owners, lien claims, bond claims, insurance coverage disputes, code enforcement actions, and other complex litigation matters from inception through appeal.
647 NE 79 Street
Miami, FL 33138
A trio of Colombians shook up the Miami tech scene—one condominium association at a time. Carlos Guzmán, Alan Guvoschi, and Nicolás Turbay were born in Bogotá, but it was the Magic City that brought them together to create. That sense of collectivity is felt in ONR; their app launched in 2018, providing a unified community experience platform facilitating dynamics in condominiums and HOAs. The Latino triptych mixed creativity, digital prowess, and their experience working in Citrix and Miami Ad School, delivering an app that makes the life of managers, boards, and residents in community associations easier—while fostering positive relationships amongst them.
1681 Kennedy Causeway
North Bay Village, FL 33141
Scott Haugland serves as regional director of operations, Southeast, for Atlantic Broadband, the nation’s eighth-largest cable operator, which serves residential, business, and select community customers in 11 states. Scott leads Atlantic Broadband’s business units in the southeastern U.S., including high-growth market segments in Southern Florida, overseeing technical operations, fiber operations, construction, warehousing, facilities, and fleet. Prior to joining Atlantic Broadband last year, Scott held senior leadership roles in the techn-ology sector with Pacer International, Teleplace International, Miami Data Vault, Broadstar Cable and Rover Technologies, and Sureview Systems; and he was a partner with Broadband Technology Advisors.
3515 NW 51 Street
Miami, FL 33142
Rick Hernandez’s career in the painting and coatings industry started with a part-time job at Sears Roebuck and Company and then quickly grew to an assistant store manager position at Sherwin Williams Co.
When Hurricane Andrew hit South Florida on August 24, 1992, he decided to open his own company, and in October 1994 Sepi Corp. was born. The growth of Sepi Corp. went much better than anticipated. The new company was able to service both residential and commercial work.
A few years later the company was rebranded, and the name was changed to Sepi Painting and Waterproofing, Inc., which aided in marketing and led to additional growth. As the years passed, services were added, such as waterproofing, electrostatic painting, and chemical coatings.
Brad Higdon started Bass-United Fire & Security Systems in 1977 as a sole employee, and over the past 43 years he has grown the business into one of the largest independently owned life safety providers in South Florida. As the president and CEO, he carries the highest accreditations in the industry, which include a state fire alarm electrical license and state fire sprinkler contractor license. Brad is factory certified on most fire alarm brands in the industry, along with holding a NICET Level IV Fire Alarm and NICET Level II Fire Sprinkler certification. He has built a company that continually delivers the solutions customers count on to protect their people and property with his dedicated staff, and his expertise and experience have afforded Bass-United many unique installation opportunities.
Don has been at emergency phone solution company Kings III for eight years and has a background of 20-plus years in the elevator trade, serving many roles. He carries a Qualification of Elevator Inspector certification with the National Association of Elevator Safety Authorities and is a Certified Elevator Technician—Supervisor with the National Association of Elevator Contractors, along with 20 additional state licenses nationwide. He sits on the Electrical Code Committee with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and works closely with local jurisdictions to ensure compliance. This experience allows him to provide an unprecedented level of service and expertise to Kings III customers.
11870 West State Road 84 #C-9
Davie, FL 33325
Michael Hough, vice president of GNM Hough, has served as the company’s operations manager since the company was founded in 2009. He is the lifeblood of the organization, and his commitment, honesty, and integrity to serving the customer is what has allowed GNM Hough to grow into a successful service business. His desire to learn new technologies and mentor the field personnel contributes to GNM Hough’s success. Prior to co-founding the company, Michael was the operations manager for a global company that had a branch office located in the South Florida area.
Michael also served our country in the United States Navy for 10 years. During his time there, he was a nuclear reactor operator on a ballistic missile submarine and served as an electronics technician. Prior to leaving the military, he spent the last years there as an instructor in their nuclear power school.
1150 Kane Concourse, 2nd floor
Bay Harbor, FL 33154
Linda started the company over 20 years ago as an advocate for the community association management industry. With 20 years of management experience, she improves properties and streamlines operations for efficiency. Linda is hardworking and resourceful, with a friendly and professional demeanor. She is a skilled community manager with a deep understanding of residents’ preferences and business operations requirements and has a successful history of meeting occupancy and payment goals while improving community satisfaction. Linda is knowledgeable about payment collections, maintenance, and documentation. Linda is a hands-on community manager known for excellent public relations and marketing coordination; she is a highly trained professional, with a passion for working with and for people. She also holds an MBA and has experience with project management including a project that exceeded two million dollars.
201 E. Kennedy Boulevard, Suite 1150
Tampa, FL 33602
Matthew Kuisle is a regional director and shareholder of Reserve Advisors. Mr. Kuisle develops and oversees the Southeast region’s annual business strategy. Since joining the firm 21 years ago, his team has partnered with more than 2,500 Florida association clients to provide peace of mind that comes from long-term capital planning.
Mr. Kuisle holds his RS and PRA designations and is a licensed professional engineer. He is a frequent author and speaker at trade shows, seminars, and other community association industry events. He currently serves as the treasurer of his condominium association in Tampa, where he resides with his wife and two children.
399 Central Florida Parkway
Orlando, FL 32824
Jeremy began landscaping at a very young age as this has been his life passion. This passion led to the formation of Exclusive Landscaping Group in 2008. Exclusive Landscaping is a full-service landscaping maintenance company that has multi-accounts (HOAs and commercial) throughout the state of Florida. Areas include Orlando, Tampa, Daytona Beach, Port St. Lucie, and many other cities/counties in between. Jeremy’s belief is “this is not a job but a true passion.” This belief carries over to all his staff to ensure the betterment of a community or commercial business.
2224 Trade Center Way
Naples, FL 34109
950 South Pine Island Road
Plantation, FL 33324
6151 Lake Osprey Drive, Ste. #300
Sarasota, FL 34240
Forge Engineering, established in the summer of 1996, was started in the kitchen of the Noltons’ home in Naples on a white board after they had become discontented working in leadership roles for a large international engineering firm. Matt was a Florida-licensed professional engineer and general contractor who was well known in the Southwest Florida area. They started from there and created a multi-disciplined engineering firm founded on Matt’s engineering skills and Roxann’s business and HR skills; thus, Forge Engineering Inc. was born.
The business grew steadily and profitably at a fast pace until the dreaded 2008–2010 economic crash that devastated the South Florida economy. As many businesses failed and closed their doors, the principals of Forge Engineering fought tooth and nail to keep their talented staff and their business alive.
Somewhere in the middle of 2011, the Noltons decided they could either continue to slug along in the very weak South Florida economy, or they could reinvent/brand Forge Engineering and strike out with a bold new purpose. After many hours of evaluating the business and South Florida marketplace, they created a new business plan for their company and have never looked back. Forge now has offices on both the east and west coasts of Florida and is a strong, sound leader in the consulting engineering business in South Florida.
Their successful marriage and business partnership have endured for more than 26 years through mutual respect and love for each other, their employees, and their profession.
Their goal is to provide specialized engineering services, delivering unique, sound, and innovative engineering solutions associated with all aspects of the built environment. At the same time, they provide a business environment where their employees can thrive, with numerous opportunities for personal and professional growth so they can enjoy coming to work every day, albeit in a different way these days. They never would have imagined a pandemic situation like we currently find all of ourselves in. Keeping all of their employees safe while still meeting their clients’ needs has kept them on their toes and modifying processes on a daily basis.
Sun Valley, ID
Tom’s background encompasses over 20 years of entrepreneurial leadership, financial consulting, and investment within the real estate, construction, and technology industries. Tom spent his early years in Central Florida. Just prior to co-founding HOALife, Tom was the owner of a medium-sized HOA management company in Boise, Idaho. Tom holds a BS in economics and a masters in accounting and is a certified management accountant. Outside of work, Tom is an avid skier, world traveler, and FAA licensed pilot..
Jordan Parsley has been an Envera team member for 10 years. He started in installation and now leads the service department. Parsley says the past years “have been wonderful, learning from each person as I have grown within the company.” His current responsibilities include maintenance, ensuring systems are online and operational, and working with all departments to communicate with other teams and continue to improve our services. Additionally, his favorite part of managing the service team is working with customers to provide solutions to complex problems or concerns in order to satisfy their needs and maintain a positive partnership.
7900 Miami Lakes Drive W.
Miami Lakes, FL 33016
(786) 953-1221 office / (305) 206-0170 cell
Rebecca Prieto, South Florida team leader and senior lender for Popular Association Banking (PAB), has worked with the team for 20-plus years. In addition to managing PAB’s two lenders in the region, Kenneth Vasquez and Jane Bracken, she manages her own portfolio. Rebecca’s consistent success in generating loans and deposits has contributed to her achievement as PAB’s top producer. She routinely uses excellence in customer service as a competitive edge in this crowded banking niche. Rebecca continues to raise the bar for relationship banking, providing strong leadership to her team, while maintaining the Bank’s dominant role serving the financial needs of community associations.
Rebecca loves working with people and giving back to the community. She currently serves on the board of directors for CAI Southeast Florida, where she also serves as co-chair of the membership committee. She enjoys volunteering for Junior Achievement and UCO of South Florida.
1680 Michigan Avenue
Suite 700, #200
Miami Beach, FL 33139
Gary Pyott is the vice president for the Miami-Dade & South Broward areas for Campbell Property Management, which provides management and financial services for condominiums, homeowner associations, and developer-controlled associations throughout Southeast Florida.
Gary Pyott, a resident of Aventura, is a 20-year veteran in the association services industry and was president of North America’s largest provider of association services for over 17 years. He has been with Campbell since 2019, overseeing the growth and operations of the Miami-Dade region, which Campbell has recently started servicing. He is also chairman of the board for the Aventura Chamber of Commerce and the latest Governor’s appointee to the Regulatory Council of Community Association Managers under the DBPR. Gary is also a state CEU certified course provider and has a wealth of knowledge and experience in the community association industry.
1523 Pine Avenue
Orlando, FL 32824
People come into your life for a time, a reason, and a season, and when Mr. George Ring entered my [Connie Lorenz’s] workplace, I thought it was only going to be for a relatively short time. However, 11 years later he has become one of my most valuable team players! It is a rare occurrence to be able to find a person who represents you and your business as a whole when it comes to direction, values, and beliefs, and George brings all of that and more to the table. His team direction, customer service skills, gentle spirit, and positive outlook have kept our team motivated, safe, educated, and a real stand out!
160 Congress Park Drive, Suite 111
Delray Beach, FL 33445
Certified Residential Management Group began from a mutual desire by founders Perry Rohan and Claire Collins to provide professional management services to condominium and homeowner associations, with the personal touch of a locally owned and operated company.
Perry began his career in 2012 and has held various positions from property manager to regional director and then director of business development and client services. His interviews with nearly 250 association boards led him to develop a “business plan” approach to association management. This management philosophy ultimately became “The Association Management Plan—A Blueprint for the Success of Your Community,” a book and a 12-section planning binder which is used as the foundation for Certified Residential’s management services.
Claire, a licensed real estate broker and property manager, has more than 20 years’ experience as a real estate professional, with a wide variety of work throughout the South Florida area. Claire’s role with Certified Residential focuses on providing board member support services, negotiating contracts, responding to member grievances, processing lease and purchase applications, and issuing estoppel letters.
Certified Residential Management Group—Your Trusted Partner in Residential Management.
110 E. Broward Boulevard, Suite 1700
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301
Will Simons, RS, is the president of the Florida office for Association Reserves, the nation’s oldest and largest reserve study provider and a seven-time winner of the Readers’ Choice Awards presented by the Florida Community Association Journal. Will has earned the Reserve Specialist designation and is also a frequent author and speaker in the industry. Will has completed thousands of reserve studies for all types of residential developments, schools, historic buildings, commercial properties, country clubs, worship facilities, marinas, and more. He also served for six years as the vice president and treasurer of his own homeowners association in South Florida.
245 Riverside Avenue, Suite 300
Jacksonville, FL 32202
Bob has been involved in the Florida Real Estate/Association Management industry for nearly 20 years. As president of Vesta’s Community Management Division, Bob has overseen the Division’s growth from 140 clients in 2015 to over 700 clients supported by 15 regional offices. Strategic acquisitions and organic growth within those regional offices have been the business model that has elevated Vesta Property Services to one of the leading management companies in the state. Bob’s leadership philosophy is simply to find exceptional leaders; provide them the support, tools, and metrics to do their job; and then get out of their way.
7816 S. Dixie Highway
West Palm Beach, FL 33405
Howard Van Natta graduated from Kings College in Wilkes-Barre, PA. He began his career at Van Natta Mechanical Corporation in 1988 as a mechanical subcontractor, eventually becoming a partner 26 years later. In 1994 he joined the Builders Association of Northern New Jersey, where he ascended to a life director and still sits on the board of directors. Howard served as an executive officer for the New Jersey Builders Association from 2008–2012 and sat on the board of directors. From 2014–2017 he was executive vice president of the AirTight Division of Lapolla Industries, Inc., a specialist global manufacturing company.
In 2017 he joined Wrights Impact Window & Door LLC. Howard seeks to achieve and maintain the highest level of excellence in his employees, products, and services. He believes customer focus and integrity are vital elements to the success of any business.
28 Liberty Street, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10005
In 2020, Vinteum raised money for Habitat for Humanity. At the end of 2020, we launched our end-of-year survey; for everyone who participated, we donated money to Habitat for Humanity. Our team picked this charity because they work tirelessly to ensure that everyone has a decent, affordable home for their families. They build sustainable homes for people across the US, Canada, and the world. COVID-19 worsened the housing crisis, with 31 percent of American families unable to afford basic needs. Habitat for Humanity helps them by providing a safe home. The Vinteum team is proud that we contributed to their incredible work.
4541 N. Dixie Hwy.
Boca Raton, FL 33431
John Von Stein is CEO of QXC Communications, a network engineering firm that designs and deploys fiber-optic and fixed-wireless architecture for internet/Wi-Fi, TV, and VoIP for HOA/COA residences and businesses.
With decades spent on the customer side of telecommunications, John understands engineering technology as well as the needs of his customers. He’s used that intuitive insight to create innovative services and pricing structures that deliver incredible value.
John has led organizations both domestically and abroad, from IT to international trading/securities; developed and holds four pending patents; been named to Goldman Sachs SB10k; and guided QXC by delivering future proofed fiber networks that evolve.
2762 SW. Matheson Avenue, Unit A2
Palm City, FL 34990
Ed Williams began his career in a family-owned roof contracting business with more than 150 employees. After 30 years he joined the largest roof consulting firm in the country to learn the consulting business. Two years later, in 1994, he formed his own company and began his consulting practice in Florida. The firm is headquartered in Palm City, Florida, which is halfway between Miami and Orlando. He has been working with condominiums for 28 years in all areas of the roof consulting business.