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6 Who Can Change Your Life

We set out to find people who could make, or may have already made, an impact on your life. The six people who follow can help you get rich (both financially and culturally), can take strokes off your golf game, can show you how to present yourself in a whole new fashion, can simplify your life during a health emergency or can make you stop and savor the sweetness (with a bit of sour) of life. Go for it.


SHARON MACDONALD; Vice President of Oncology and Palliative Care Services/Chief Foundation Officer, Lee Memorial Health System; “We need to make things as easy as possible for people going through treatment.”Sharon MacDonald
Vice President of Oncology and Palliative Care Services/Chief Foundation Officer, Lee Memorial Health Systems 

Sharon macdonald loves to think of the big picture. Talk about ways to improve care, strategic plans and dealing with growth and she lights up. And for two distinct groups of people in need of quality healthcare in Southwest Florida—children and cancer patients—she’s one of the driving forces behind the treatment they receive.

Nearly 15 years ago, she was recruited from Boston to think of a way to link oncology services together in a way that would make the treatment as easy and convenient as possible. The end result is a one-stop center for people afflicted with cancer.

“Cancer is a frightening diagnosis,” she says. “We need to make things as easy as possible for people going through treatment and their families. We heard so many stories of people exhausted just from trying to get to all the services they needed.”

That’s changed, thanks to the Lee Memorial Regional Cancer Center, which is already so successful that three years into its existence plans are underway to build another adjacent center.

While part of her time is spent focusing on the continued efforts to improve patient care at the center, MacDonald’s other hat, which she acquired 11 years ago in an interim capacity, is to help Lee Memorial meet its goals through fundraising. So she spends the other part of her week spearheading a campaign to raise $120 million to build a children’s hospital.

While a children’s hospital unit exists inside HealthPark Medical Center, a dedicated building on that campus would allow Lee Memorial to expand its children’s healthcare options and add more beds for adult acute care. And when she finishes that task, it’s not like she’ll just settle in to an easy administrative roll.

She’s already started working on new ideas. Among other things, she’s interested in creating a more cohesive system of elder care, for which MacDonald says, “We have the right population to create a model for an aging country.”


TOM MORAN & BOB EDWARDS; Managing Directors, Moran Edwards Asset Management Group, philanthropist. “People were pulling back. We decided that it was the time to give more.” (ROLAND SCARPA)Tom Moran & Bob Edwards
Managing Directors, Moran Edwards Asset Management Group, philanthropists

Tom Moran and Bob Edwards can tell you about all the national recognition they and their firm have received, consistently being ranked among the top 100 in their field by publications such as Barron’s and World’s Best Money Managers. They can easily tell you how their funds beat 10-year Lipor averages in various categories.

But that’s in the past. They are worried about the future.

“Our business is based on performance,” Moran says. “That’s how we sell our business. That’s not very common in our industry.”

And they’ve delivered, enriching many local investors as well as people from around the world. Now with more than $2 billion in assets under management, the firm is helping to create generational wealth for its clients.

Edwards and Moran are also enriching local lives through cultural philanthropy. Both are major supporters of the arts. Moran and his wife, Sandi, are the money behind Opera Naples and have contributed to various arts groups over the years. Edwards and his wife, Terry, are major art collectors and have helped finance exhibitions at the Phil, the Patty & Jay Baker Naples Museum of Art and at museums around the state and country. Both couples are trustees at the Naples Winter Wine Festival, which the Edwardses are co-chairing for 2013.

In a town where generosity is a part of life, the duo did something many others didn’t.

“During the financial crisis, things were going crazy in our industry,” Edwards says. “But it was also a crazy time for charities. People were pulling back. We decided, as did Tom and Sandi, that it was the time to give more.”


JULIE HUSSEY; Stylist and Sales Manager at Marissa Collections. “I can help you speak before you even open your mouth.”Julie Hussey
Stylist and Sales Manager at Marissa Collections 

Clothes say so much about who we are before we ever get a chance to speak for ourselves. Hussey wants to make sure you are saying what you want to say.

“I can help you speak before you even open your mouth,” she says.

Spend a couple of hours, and a not inconsiderable sum, with her, and Hussey says you’ll feel better about yourself than you have in a long time. The secret is finding the right fit and styles for your body and the right colors and garments for your lifestyle. Hussey says she closely examines a woman’s body type, but also listens to her talk about her life.

“Some women might only need casual clothes,” she says. “Others might need the right look for an important meeting or an event.”

But even for the most formal affair, the key is to make sure women are comfortable in the clothes. Sure, she has to casually steer some women away from items that might seem sexy on a model, but not necessarily on their body.

“I just say, ‘I see that you like that, but can I show you another option,’” she says.

And by the end of a session, Hussey knows she’s done her job if the woman treats her like a friend or a coach, someone she can trust because she “just made her life easier.”


RANDY ESSIG; Owner, Randy’s Fishmarket. “I was enamored with her recipe. And, on her death bed, she gave it to me.”Randy Essig
Owner, Randy’s Fishmarket 

Essig knows the transformative power of a great piece of Key lime pie. Heck, he can remember the transformation he went through after eating just a mediocre piece of Florida’s official state pie.

After an all-night drive down Interstate 95 in the early ’70s, Essig and a friend stopped at a little hole-in-the-wall raw bar in Port Orange to recharge. As they were finishing up, the waitress suggested trying a slice of Key lime pie.

“That Key lime flavor just sort of caught my tastebuds,” Essig says, still remembering the pie. “After that, I was hooked.”

He experimented, making the pies on his own, and kept at it after he opened his first restaurant in Bonita Springs in the early ’90s. His pies were getting better and better, but he continued searching for the perfect recipe. He found it from a woman on the other side of the state. They struck up a friendship over their shared love of the stuff.

“I was enamored with her recipe,” he says. “And, on her death bed, she gave it to me. Her husband’s probably still upset about that.”

Since then, Essig’s pie has been the cornerstone of his seafood market and restaurant (now located in North Naples). People call in orders from all over the world. Locals ship it to family members or bring it in carry-on bags. It’s the smooth and creamy taste of South Florida in a Graham cracker crust.


JIM SUTTIE; Golf Guru. “I’d say that 95 percent of the people I see are better after an hour with me.”Jim Suttie
Golf Guru 

To call suttie a golf instructor, swing coach or really anything so simplistic just marginalizes what he can do for your game. With a doctorate in biomechanics, Suttie takes a holistic approach to a golf swing that goes way beyond someone telling you to change your grip and shuffle your stance.

His first goal is to find out what you are looking to achieve—better ball flight, more distance, better putting, killing a slice. Then he just looks at what you do naturally.

“There is no one golf swing that you can teach someone,” he says. “You can’t just tell everyone to follow the same path. People have natural rhythms. So it seems obvious that their golf swing would have a natural rhythm.”

Instead of trying to fit you in to what works for someone else, Suttie specializes in giving you the best swing for your body, athleticism and skills. Although he was one of the first people in the country to use video technology to help analyze swings, he says he uses it sparingly now, “Only when it’s really needed.”

Instead, he relies on 42 years of experience and a track record of results. “I’d say that 95 percent of the people I see are better after an hour with me.”

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