Melanie Griffin

DBPR is proud to announce our 2023 Celebrating Women in Business panel and networking event, moderated by Secretary Melanie S. Griffin.

Attend the Event – RSVP by Friday, April 7 HERE.

Dynamic female entrepreneurs and professionals from around the state will gather in the heart of downtown Tallahassee on Tuesday, April 11 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Tallahassee for a panel discussion with DBPR licensees moderated by DBPR Secretary Melanie S. Griffin. After, attendees will participate in small group discussions with panelists and additional industry leaders regarding topics such as leadership, mentorship and professional development.

Then, attendees are invited to gather atop Eve on Adams until 7:30 p.m. for a networking reception hosted by industry partners to continue celebrating women in business while enjoying breathtaking views of Tallahassee’s skyline.


Ana Melendez

CEO of A&E Wholesale of North Florida

Ana Melendez is the CEO and owner of A&E Wholesale, which is a distribution company that provides over 3,000 items in the categories of beverages, candy, chocolate, medicine, cigars, automotive supplies, and paper products to over 1,200 convenience stores in North Florida and South Georgia.

During her time in Tallahassee, Ana has won the 2017 and 2022 TAN Awards for her lobbying contributions in the Florida Senate and House of Representatives. In 2017 she was invited by the DBPR to be a panel leader for the “Celebrating Women in Business” event held at FSU. In 2018, she won the Golden Ace Award in recognition of her leadership and commitment to Authentic Community Engagement. She has made contributions to AMI Kids, Second Harvest of the Big Bend, Legal Aid Foundation, Seminole Boosters, and The Kearney Center/CESC. Additionally, she currently serves as the Vice President of the Florida Association of Wholesale Distributors Board of Directors, as the Treasurer for the CESC (Kearney Center) Board, and a Board member of the Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce, Second Harvest of the Big Bend, and the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra.

Prior to purchasing A&E, Ana was the Director of E-Commerce at Essendant, a Fortune 500 distributor of office products, furniture, and cleaning supplies.  As one of their youngest Directors, Ana led the launch of Innovera, a private label brand of technology products available in Walgreens and Costco and grew the brand to $60M in annual sales.  This included traveling to countries such as China and Taiwan with her global sourcing and quality teams.  She also managed the $300M OEM technology accessories business for Essendant that included brands such as Logitech, Kensington, and Sony.

Ana holds a BSBA in Marketing and an MBA from The Ohio State University.  She was also one of 60 Latino CEOs around the country that were accepted into the Stanford Business Scaling Program in 2017 and graduated from the Jim Moran Institute SBEP program in 2022. Her interests include painting, performing on alto saxophone, car racing, sports, and traveling.  Originally from Mexico City, Ana currently resides in Tallahassee, Florida with her husband Michael and her son Addison.

Lorena Holley

VP & General Counsel, Florida Retail Federation

Lorena Holley joined the Florida Retail Federation as General Counsel & Vice President in March of 2018.

Prior to joining FRF, Holley served as General Counsel of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services under Agricultural Commissioner Adam Putnam starting in January of 2011.

Prior to joining the Department, Ms. Holley spent a number of years with the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC), most recently serving as a Senior Attorney with the Commission’s Office of General Counsel Division of Appeals, Rules and Mediation.  During her years at the PSC, Ms. Holley also served as a Chief Advisor to a Commissioner, advising on legal and policy issues related to the economic regulation of Florida’s electric, gas, telecommunications, and water and wastewater utility industries.

Ms. Holley also spent several years working in private practice for the law firm of Rutledge, Ecenia, Purnell & Hoffman, P.A., where she provided legal representation to local governments and private utility companies.

Prior to joining the PSC, Ms. Holley was a staff attorney with Legal Services of Greater Miami, Inc. where she worked as an advocate and representative of indigent clients before various forums including the United States Social Security Administration, Citizen and Immigration Services, and the Florida Department of Children and Families.

She received her J.D. in 1999 from the Texas Tech School of Law in Lubbock, Texas and is a member of the Florida Bar.  Originally from Chile, Ms. Holley grew up in Austin, Texas, and now resides in Tallahassee, Florida with her two sons.

Maryam Ghyabi

CEO & President, Ghyabi Consulting & Management
Adjunct Professor, Embry-Riddle University

Maryam Ghyabi-White is the CEO/President of Ghyabi Consulting & Management (GCM) and serves as an adjunct professor of civil engineering at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

In her current role at GCM and as the former CEO/President of Ghyabi & Associates, Inc., Maryam provides leadership and support to position the company at the forefront of the engineering industry. Maryam also oversees finance, production, procedures and policies, resources, and revenues of the company throughout the firm and its second-generation firm’s 28-year history. She is also in charge of the firms’ business development and public relations initiatives. Maryam has represented the firms at the global engineering industry level and at the local level and has represented the firms at legislative sessions and government functions.

Recently, Maryam served as a member of Governor Ron DeSantis’ transition team, advising the Governor on environmental and water quality policies affecting residents, officials, businesses, and transportation network systems.


  • St. John’s River Water Management District – Former Board of Trustee and Treasurer, Current Governing Board Member, Vice-Chair
  • Truist (formerly SunTrust) – Board of Trustees
  • PACE Center for Girls – Board of Trustees
  • University of Florida Transportation Institute External Advisory Board
  • Volusia County Economic Development – Women in Business Symposium – Chair
  • Advanced Technology Center – Board
  • Volusia County Expressway Authority Coalition – Chair
  • I-4 St. John’s River Bridge Coalition – Chair
  • Transportation Outreach Program Board – Chair
  • Women’s Center Board at Daytona State College – Former Chair
  • – 2004
  • Volusia County Area Responsible Development – Former Chair
  • Central Florida Transportation Commission Task Force
  • Floridians for Better Transportation – Former Chair
  • Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Technical Coordinating Committee – Volusia County Representative

Co-Owner, Poco Vino Wine Bar & Market

Amanda Morrison, a certified sommelier, is a hospitality innovator in Tallahassee, previously known for growing Social Catering from a catering service to a hospitality venue management company and beyond.

Morrison’s Happy Motoring was one of the first businesses to revitalize a 15-year abandoned gas station in the South Adams corridor, which has since evolved into a thriving social district.

Her newest property, ‘Poco Vino,’ brings similar versatility to downtown Tallahassee as a boutique wine shop, wine bar, gourmet market, and private event space.

She is passionate about crafting memorable experiences through good food, good wine, and the spirit of service.

Featured Mentors


Florida Department of Elder Affairs

Secretary Michelle Branham was appointed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis to serve as the agency head for the Florida Department of Elder Affairs in December 2021. Under Secretary Branham’s leadership, the department serves Florida’s nearly 6 million seniors over the age of 60, providing services and supporting initiatives through Florida’s Aging Network to help seniors live well and age well in the state.

Secretary Branham brings more than 20 years of experience to her role – in public policy, public health, and public relations and more than a decade of senior executive experience in federal and state-level public policy initiatives including advanced healthcare and Florida senior initiatives.

Prior to her appointment, Secretary Branham was Vice President of Public Policy for the Alzheimer’s Association for nine years. She served as Chair for the State of Florida’s Alzheimer’s Disease Advisory Committee and was an Advisory Member for the State Plan on Aging Task Force. Additionally, she co-chaired the State Health Improvement Plan Alzheimer’s priority area and was appointed by Governor DeSantis to serve on his Safe and Limited Return Task Force during the public health emergency.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in political sciences from Stetson University and a master’s degree in theological studies from Emory University’s Candler School of Theology.


Florida Department of Children and Families

Shevaun Harris joined the Department of Children and Families as the Secretary in February 2021 after a nearly two-decade career at the Agency for Health Care Administration.

Prior to joining DCF, Secretary Harris served as Acting Secretary at the Agency for Health Care Administration, where she was responsible for administering the Florida Medicaid program and regulating over 40,000 licensed health care facilities in the state. Secretary Harris has held positions in the health and human services field, providing services to children and adults diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and children receiving services in an inpatient psychiatric program. During her tenure at the AHCA, Secretary Harris led the development of all Medicaid policies and implementation of the agency’s quality improvement initiatives with particular focus on perinatal and behavioral health outcomes.

Secretary Harris is an innovator, spearheading the development of the State’s Canadian Prescription Drug Importation program. She has led several major implementations and served as the lead negotiator for multi-billion-dollar contracts under the Statewide Medicaid Managed Care program.

Joining DCF in early 2021, Secretary Harris has made holistic care for families a priority by strategically working to integrate systems and services. In September 2021, she joined First Lady Casey DeSantis in launching Hope Florida – A Pathway to Prosperity, a personalized approach to helping families overcome barriers to self-sufficiency through community collaboration. Secretary Harris continues to drive innovative prevention and early intervention efforts through the work of the Department and community partners.

She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology, a master’s degree in social work from the Florida State University and a master’s degree in business administration from Quinnipiac University.


Florida Department of Transportation, Finance and Administration

Lisa Saliba was appointed as the Assistant Secretary of Finance and Administration of the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) in October 2021. As the Assistant Secretary of Finance and Administration, Lisa oversees FDOT’s Office of Administration, Office of Comptroller and the Office of Work Program and Budget, who manage the Department’s financial services continuum to include planning, development, finance, administration, quality assurance, and quality control.

Before Lisa’s appointment, she served as the Director of the Federal Recovery Unit in the Governor’s Executive Office. In this role, she provided oversight and management of the Coronavirus Relief Fund and the State Fiscal Recovery Fund.

Lisa served as FDOT’s Director of the Office of Work Program & Budget for ten years leading the planning, development, financing, and implementation of the Department’s $50 billion Five-Year Work Program.

Lisa holds a bachelor’s degree from Florida State University in Mathematics Education with advanced studies in Economics and Financial Analysis. Over her career, Lisa has served in key policy and advisory roles. She has led technical teams in high-demand environments, achieving value and efficiencies in operations and linking policy strategies to tactical action.


Florida Agency for Persons with Disabilities

Taylor Hatch was appointed as the Director of the Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in February 2023. She leads 2,500 employees around the state who are in six regional offices and three state-run facilities. The agency serves more than 60,000 Floridians with seven types of developmental disabilities. APD works with local organizations and private providers to support people who have developmental disabilities and their families in living, learning, and working in their communities.

Ms. Hatch recently served as the Deputy Secretary at the Department of Children and Families, where she focused on shaping and aligning the strategic direction of the Department while overseeing policy and operations for child and family well-being, substance abuse and mental health, economic self-sufficiency and quality and innovation. Prior to the Deputy Secretary role, Ms. Hatch served as the Assistant Secretary of Economic Self-Sufficiency where she led the direction of Florida’s public assistance programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Medicaid, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Homelessness and more. In this role, she brought her experience of workforce policy to reimagine the services provided through public benefits to support individuals in achieving self-sufficiency.

Before joining DCF, Ms. Hatch served as the Director of Workforce Services at the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) where she was responsible for the management and oversight of the state’s Reemployment Assistance program, Labor Market Statistics, and One-Stop and Program Support of workforce programs, including the partnership with the local CareerSource Florida network boards across the state.

Prior to her tenure at DEO, Ms. Hatch served as Senior Director of Policy and Legislative Affairs Director at the Department of Management Services, Deputy Legislative Affairs Director for DEO, and also gained experience in private sector consulting. Serving in these capacities, she was integral in advancing legislative and strategic priorities, streamlining operational functions, and building collaborative relationships with internal and external stakeholders.

A Florida native, Ms. Hatch lives in Tallahassee with her husband Eddie and three children.


Owner, Hearth and Soul | Co-Owner and Vice President, Tri-Eagle Sales

Susie Busch Transou is a business woman, mom, grandmother, volunteer and friend. Growing up in St. Louis, Susie Busch Transou has always taken the Anheuser-Busch philosophy “Making Friends Is Our Business” seriously – both in her personal and professional life. While attending Duke she met Tripp Transou, the man with whom she would move to Tallahassee, raise three children, and through Tri-Eagle Sales (a Florida specialty beverage distribution company) serve north Florida’s beverage needs.

Susie’s love of hospitality blended with the desire to enrich the lives of others has come together to make Hearth and Soul a dream come true.

After years of business and hospitality experience, Susie’s entrepreneurial spirit was stoked when she was inspired at a milestone birthday gathering of old and new friends to reflect on unmet needs in her world and what feeds her soul. The answer led Susie to create a unique concept in retail that is reminiscent of the home; a haven within this fast-paced world where friends can connect and an inviting place to acquire carefully curated items from near and far.

A place called Hearth and Soul proudly serves friends in Tallahassee, Florida; Austin, Texas; and St. Louis, Missouri.


Senior Vice President, River City Development Group

Nina Sickler is a registered Professional Engineer in Florida with more than 30 years of design, management, and leadership experience.

Ms. Sickler holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree from Georgia Institute of Technology, and she began her career as a design engineer which expanded into project management, team management, and entrepreneurship. Ms. Sickler rose through the ranks to Vice President of an international design firm, and in 2006 founded a highway and bridge engineering firm which was acquired by a regional design and construction firm in 2017. Ms. Sickler currently serves as Senior Vice President of River City Development Group with a focus on sustainable commercial, multi-family, and affordable housing.

She has more than 25 years of experience designing and managing capital programs for Government Agencies. In addition, she served as Chair of the Transportation Committee for ACEC-FL (American Council of Engineering Companies, Florida) and is an appointed member of the Jacksonville Small and Emerging Business (JSEB) Monitoring Committee.

Ms. Sickler understands the full spectrum of successful business operations including financial planning, start-up requirements, accounting, business planning, marketing, and employee relations. She graduated from the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce ATHENA Powerlink business mentoring program in 2012. Ms. Sickler was named one of Jacksonville’s Ten “Women of Influence” by the Jacksonville Business Journal in 2011 and Top 50 Women Business Leaders in Jacksonville by Women We Admire in 2023.


CEO of Jones Construction & Design, LLC

Kerwyn Jones-Wilson is the owner and CEO of Jones Construction and Design, LLC as well as an active realtor. She is the first woman to become a Florida Master Builder and has served the Big Bend area as a Certified Residential Contractor for more than 15 years and a licensed Real Estate Salesperson for more than two years.

She was the recipient of the 2022 Woman of Distinction Award at the Southeast Building Conference. Ms. Jones-Wilson also served as the 2020-21 President of the National Association of Women in Construction – Tallahassee Chapter, as well as the Charter Founder of the Gadsden Chapter of the Future Builders of America and Treasurer for the Community Economic and Development Corporation.

In addition, Kerwyn Jones-Wilson is the TradeswHERk Campaign Coordinator with Women Wednesdays where she coordinates training and job opportunities for women, minorities and youth in construction and other skilled trades.


National Director, Asphalt Pavement Alliance

Amy Miller sits at the helm of the Asphalt Pavement Alliance – a coalition of the National Asphalt Pavement Alliance, the consortium of State Asphalt Pavement Associations, and the Asphalt Institute serving as the National Director. She is a founding board member of the Women of Asphalt, Inc. and immediate past president.  She is a founder of the North Florida Structural Engineers Association and former president of the State Chapter.

In addition to working in the construction industry, she is also a founder and former board members of St. Johns Classical Academy, Inc., a charter school with two campuses in Clay County.  Most recently she has formed Ancora Management, Inc., a management organization dedicated to assisting charter schools.  She is currently serving as the chair for the Clay County Chamber of Commerce and is a licensed general contractor and professional engineer in Florida.

A Florida native, she earned a B.A in Environmental Engineering and an MBA, both from the University of Florida.


Government Affairs Director, Massey Services

Suzanne T. Graham is the Director of Government Affairs for Massey Services Inc. Prior to joining Massey Services in 2011, she was the owner of American Pest Control Management Inc., based in Port Charlotte, FL.

In her current role Suzanne serves as a company representative for federal, state and local government officials, community stakeholders and allied industries. This includes maintaining relationships with elected officials and developing community partnerships to create a beneficial impact on the community and Massey Services. Graham also coordinates all government relation issues and tracks laws at the state and federal levels that impact the pest management and landscape industries.

In 2005, Suzanne became a Florida Certified Building Contractor. She was the first woman to become president of the CDBIA, and in 2012 became the second female president to serve the Florida Home Builders Association. Suzanne just completed serving three years as the President of the Florida Pest Management Association. She has opened new doors for other women in the industry. She has helped build a foundation and shatter the glass ceiling for women to follow, and through trials and tribulations, helped frame others’ successes.

Years of experience in the industry and involvement in the various trade organizations on the local, state and national levels has prepared Suzanne for this position, including:

  • Florida licensed Pest Control Operator
  • Certified Building Contractor
  • 2019-2022 President of the Florida Pest Management Association
  • 2013 President of the Florida Home Builders Association (FHBA)
  • 2006 President of the Charlotte –DeSoto Building Industry Association
  • Co-chairman of the Florida Pest Management Association Governmental Affairs Committee and Political Action Committee
  • Member of the National Pest Management Association Public Policy Committee
  • Member of the National Association of Landscape Professionals Public Affairs Advisory Council
  • Director of the National Association of Home Builders and Trustee on the Political Action Committee
  • Member of FHBA’S Political Action Committee and the Charlotte DeSoto Building Industry Association’s Governmental Affairs Committee
  • Appointed by Governor Rick Scott in 2012 to the Southwest Regional Planning Council

Rapid Response Coordinator, CareerSource – Capital Region

Reenee “The P.L.U.G.” Williams, Rapid Response Coordinator for CareerSource Capital Region, has over 10 years of Marketing, Public Relations, and Event Planning experience.

After 8 years as a Publicist, BET & Soul Train Awards Production Assistant, and Day of Event Coordinator in the music and entertainment industry, Reenee Williams desired a change and entered the corporate world where she was the Marketing Director for H&R Block traveling to 56 offices across 3 states planning events and teaching Marketing & Business2Business techniques. She then transitioned to Operations Manager, Sales Director, and General Manager for a national gym where she developed and taught Leadership, Team Building and Marketing Strategies for over 3 years.

Reenee’s passion to not only help people but make a successful and positive impact on all those she meets eventually directed her into the Nonprofit space. Reenee is a Certified Business Engagement Professional and works at CareerSource Capital Region, a nonprofit located in Gadsden, Leon and Wakulla county. Starting as a Business Employer Solutions Account Executive assisting IT, Professional Services, Government, Education and other Nonprofit agencies with recruiting, training and retaining local talent, Reenee’s savvy networking and relationship-building skills soon opened the door for a new opportunity as the Rapid Response Coordinator, assisting businesses of all sizes and across all industries with proactive strategies to minimize and prevent employee layoffs and minimize and prevent business closures. Reenee’s motto is “I dot the I’s and cross the T’s and connect you to the resources you did and did not know that you need.” Known as “The P.L.U.G”, Reenee uses Partner Leveraging for Ultimate Growth to connect businesses to their community.

In her free time, Reenee enjoys traveling with her family, staying in adventure Air B&Bs, going out in the ministry, cooking, singing and white-water rafting.


Executive Officer, Charlotte DeSoto Building Industry Association

Donna Barrett is the Executive Officer of the Charlotte DeSoto Building Industry Association. Donna is originally from Queens, NY and moved to Port Charlotte, FL in 1993.

After her move to Charlotte County, Donna started working for JCPenney in Port Charlotte and starting as Seasonal help to Assistant Merchandise Manager before being promoted to Pinellas Park as a Specialty Manager and in 2000 was promoted to her dream job as a buyer for JCPenney Outlet Stores in their corporate office in Plano, Texas.

Hurricane Charley hit Charlotte County, FL in 2004 and it was the deciding factor for Donna to come back home to our paradise and became a buyer for Bealls Outlet Stores.

In 2008 Donna started working at the Cultural Center of Charlotte County as the Sales & Marketing Manager, overseeing the retail shops, events, theater and most important the 1000 of volunteers that built “The Place That Friendship Built”.

In 2013 Donna was elected by the board of directors to become the Executive Officer. Since joining the CDBIA, our family has grown to nearly double in size and have worked hard to be a strong voice for the building industry. She helps work with building relationships in the community, throughout the state and nationally educating and helping people learn about the vital building industry.

With the love for her community and the construction, Donna serves on the Charlotte Technical College Advisory Council and is a board member for PORCH (Peace River Community Housing Partners) and served on Charlotte County’s COAD (Community Organizations Active in Disaster). Donna served as the Chair of the Florida Executive Officer Council from 2015-2017 and serves as the EO Liaison for the NAHB Membership Committee and serves on the NAHB EOC Public Relations, Non Dues-Revenue and Program Development Committees. In 2019 Donna was named the National Association of Homes Builders Local Executive Officer of the year.

Donna is a graduate of Leadership Charlotte Class of 2010 and was inducted into the Charlotte County Chamber Leadership Hall of Fame in 2019, and has been involved in many charities including Boys & Girls Club, Port Charlotte Bandits Football & Cheer, YoungLife and Arts & Humanities Council, and was humbled to receive the inaugural Community Champion Award by the Gulfcoast Partnership in 2018.

Donna is married to Mike, and has 2 children, Caitlin and Matthew and her Boston Terrier Olivia Grace.


CEO & Founder, BERNEXIS Construction and Development

Pamela Jones-Smith is founder and CEO of BERNEXIS Construction and Development, LLC, a dynamic; 100% woman-owned commercial construction management and design firm. With nearly 20 years of specialized experience in construction and real estate operations, Pamela’s proven leadership and expertise continues to generate outstanding value for businesses, communities, and real estate stakeholders.

Since beginning operations in 2015, BERNEXIS has built a strong reputation of excellence in delivering high-quality cost-effective construction, site work, roofing, demolition, and excavation projects. BERNEXIS exemplifies its vision of being “trailblazer’s in the construction industry” by combining innovative construction-based technologies with top-notch safety and quality control mechanisms to meet and exceed the needs of its extensive client base. BERNEXIS’ continued success is a result of a solid work ethic, dedication to employees, and commitment to client satisfaction.

Prior to establishing BERNEXIS, Pamela served in advisory, project management, and broker roles at various organizations where she managed a range of multidisciplinary construction projects. Pamela currently holds licenses as a general and roofing contractor, lead renovator, claims adjuster, and real estate agent while maintaining several certifications as a SBA 8(a) a business development program with the federal government, maintenance of traffic (MOT), FSESCI Inspector, and OSHA 30.

Pamela received a bachelor’s degree in interior design from Florida State University. She lives in Tallahassee, FL with her husband, Sterling, and has two children, Victoria and Sterling II.


Vice President for Workforce Innovation, Tallahassee Community College

Kimberly Moore has spent over a decade in the workforce development arena.  She currently serves as the Vice President for Workforce Innovation at Tallahassee Community College (TCC).  In the position of Vice President, she is responsible for developing strategic solutions that address the needs of employers and those seeking to enter or advance in the workforce.  Prior to joining TCC, she served as the Chief Executive Officer of WORKFORCE plus, the regional economic and workforce development body.

Ms. Moore is a graduate of Tallahassee Community College with an Associate of Arts degree.  She continued her education at The Florida State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice  and continued on to earn her M.B.A from Webster University and a Doctorate from The Florida State University.   She is a proud member of Leadership Tallahassee Class 24 and Leadership Florida Class 33.

In addition to her role at TCC, she continues to give back to her community through service.  Note a few of Ms. Moore’s many volunteer roles include serving as Chair- Leon County Research Development Authority, Vice-Chair of Florida A&M University Board of Trustees, Vice-Chair of the Economic Vitality Leadership Council, Truist/SunTrust Community Advisory Board, Rutger University Advisory Board, Board of Director for the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce and Wakulla Chamber of Commerce.

She has been recognized locally, statewide  and nationally for her service and commitment to excellence with accolades including: Tallahassee’s Top 26 Women in Business (2007), the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Leadership Pacesetter Award (2009), the Dr. Reginald Rolle Memorial Economic Development Champion of the Year Award (2010), Florida Diversity Council’s 2014 Florida’s Most Powerful and Influential Woman Award, Tallahassee Woman Magazine’s 2016 ‘Women Who Mean Business’ Innovator of the Year Award, 2017 inductee to the Tallahassee Community College’s Hall of Fame, 2019 Economic Innovator of the Year, Florida State University – Omicron Delta Kappa (Honoris Causa) – 2020,  2021 Idahlynn Karre Exemplary Leadership Award, 2021 TCC Eagle Award and 2022 Trailblazer Award.


Director of Tax Services, Thomas Howell Ferguson P.A.

Since 1992, Stacey has been providing tax and consulting services to a variety of corporate clients.

A graduate of Florida State University with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a Master of Professional Accountancy from Mississippi State University, her responsibilities include planning, supervision of staff, review of tax returns, and research on tax engagements and special projects. In addition, she has been involved in the preparation of several applications for exempt status and numerous unrelated business income tax issues.

Professional Associations:

  • Member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)
  • Member of the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FICPA)
  • Member, Florida Society of Association Executives


Community Activities:

  • Board of Directors, Joanna Francis Living Well Foundation
  • Treasurer, The Downs Syndrome Association of Tallahassee
  • Treasurer, Gym Force Gymnastics Booster Club
  • Past President and Past Treasurer, Alpha Gamma Delta House Association

Founder & Owner, Ivy Ventures, Inc.

Noted as the first female in Florida to have earned both licenses as a general contractor and professional engineer, Lee-En Chung, P.E. founded Ivy Ventures – a construction consulting firm in sunny Sarasota, Florida. Lee-En inspects new commercial construction for banks and owners throughout Florida – documenting the progress of the trades and approving disbursement of funds.

As an active Columbia Engineering alumna, she mentors students and helps them with summer internships and career opportunities. Lee-En is a member of International Women’s Forum and Women Presidents Organization; she was a speaker at the 2022 WPO conference in Montréal.

Lee-En enjoys yoga, orchids and baking cheesecake.