Treasure Coast Food Bank has named four community leaders to its Board of Directors. Christine Kelly-Begazo, Richard P. Tambone, Scott Bass, and Maj. Petri Hayes all recently began their board service. The new members add expertise to the board in the areas of agriculture, education, public safety, and economic development.
“We welcome Christine, Richard, Scott, and Maj. Hayes to the Board of Directors and look forward to the wealth of expertise they have to share,” said Judith Cruz, President and CEO of Treasure Coast Food Bank. “Their knowledge and longtime dedication to the Treasure Coast will help us as we work to fight hunger and alleviate its causes.”
Christine Kelly-Begazo has been an agriculture educator for nearly three decades, starting with a 4-year stint in the Peace Corps in Honduras. She is a County Extension Director and Agent in the University of Florida/IFAS Extension office located in Vero Beach.
Kelly-Begazo holds a master’s degree in agronomy from the University of Florida and has worked with the agricultural community in Indian River County since 2004. She initiated the Peanut Butter Challenge in Indian River County, a food drive among all the ag extension offices that collects peanut butter for local food banks. In 2020, she received Distinguished Service Awards for Excellence in Extension Education Programs from both the Florida Association and the National Association of County Agricultural Agents. Kelly-Begazo will serve as Treasurer of the Board.
Richard P. Tambone is a leading Florida and New England commercial, industrial and multifamily real estate developer responsible for the acquisition and development of more than 15 million square feet of office, research, industrial, medical, and multifamily projects in South Florida, the Southwest, and the Greater Boston markets.
From 2016-2022, Tambone Companies had the opportunity to serve as the master developer for the City of Port St. Lucie to market and expedite the sale and development of land within the 1,200 acres of Tradition Center for Commerce with the goal of spearheading economic development in the region.
Scott Bass is Deputy Superintendent of the School District of Indian River County. He has served nearly 30 years in public education, beginning as a science teacher and sports coach in Glades County. After leading several schools as a principal and assistant principal, he served as Assistant Superintendent for the Glades County School District, supervising operations, human resources, career and adult education as well as principals. He was elected Glades County Schools Superintendent in 2012 and re-elected in 2016.
Under his leadership, the school district experienced significant achievements, including third-highest graduation rates in Florida and second-highest kindergarten readiness scores. He was named Deputy Superintendent for Indian River County in 2020, and oversees school safety, district operations, human resources, and supervision of all the district’s principals.
Major Petri Hayes commands the Department of Detention within the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office, which includes numerous divisions that oversee inmates. He holds a degree in Criminal Justice and a graduate certificate in Public and Environmental Affairs from Indiana University. He served with the Indiana Department of Corrections for 10 years prior to moving to Florida.
Petri joined the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Office after completing the Florida Corrections Officer Proficiency Course through Indian River State College in 2009. He was a member of the agency’s Gang Intelligence Task Force, serves as Commander of the jail’s Emergency Response Team, and worked to develop a physical fitness training course for members of the Emergency Response Team. Petri also serves the community through tireless work organizing and coaching basketball camps and leagues for youth in St. Lucie County.
Mitch Hall, General Manager of Walmart Distribution Center #7038, will continue in his role as Executive Board Chairman for the 2022-23 year. He will serve along with Vice Chairman Peter Tesch, President of the Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County, and Secretary Mark Satterlee, Deputy County Administrator of St. Lucie County. Professor Emeritus Ed Skvarch is Past Immediate Chairman.
Returning to the board are David Jackson, legislative aide to Congressman Bill Posey, and Karl Zimmermann, a community advocate from Vero Beach.
ABOUT TREASURE COAST FOOD BANK
Treasure Coast Food Bank is the only food bank and largest hunger relief organization on Florida’s Treasure Coast, providing the community each year with millions of meals valued at more than $50 million through robust programs and in partnership with 400 charitable organizations in Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin, and Okeechobee counties. In addition to emergency food distribution, Treasure Coast Food Bank operates a full roster of direct service programs that not only solve the immediate problem of hunger, but help individuals and families gain long-term food security, better health outcomes, and self-sufficiency. Treasure Coast Food Bank is a member of Feeding America, the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. For more information on Treasure Coast Food Bank, call 772.489.3034, log on to stophunger.org, visit our Facebook page at facebook.com/tcfoodbank, or follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/tcfoodbank.