Up & Comers
20-somethings who are helping to shape business in Florida.
? M. Thure Caire, 24, Tallahassee, is Leon County's youngest elected official, holding an unpaid board position on the Ochlockonee River Soil and Water Conservation District. Caire served as outreach coordinator for the Think About Personal Pollution campaign and is vice president of Leon County Young Democrats and rules chairman for the Florida Young Democrats. He has been a research analyst for Tallahassee's stormwater management division for the past two years and is planning to go to med school this fall.
? Brie Turek, 25, Orlando, is press secretary for Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. She earned her bachelor's in advertising/PR/marketing from the University of Central Florida and her master's in corporate communications from Rollins College. She worked in more than eight semesters of internships in PR during UCF years and interned at Curley & Pynn, which hired her before she graduated.
? Kevin O'Connell, 25, Orlando, is managing director of a Northwestern Mutual Financial Network district office. He is the youngest person the company has ever appointed to such a position. His office employs 12 financial representatives and seven interns.
? Neil Bell, 27, Tallahassee, is director of Summit Outdoor Advertising, a Tallahassee-based billboard company he co-founded in 2004. Company started with $600 and one billboard and now has 100 displays in Jefferson, Leon and Wakulla counties. His company has been nominated for "Emerging Business of the Year" by the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce. Bell just served a term as president of the Greater Tallahassee Advertising Federation.
? Sabrina McLaughlin, 26, Navarre, owns The PR Girl Inc., a public relations firm. She has a bachelor's degree from the University of Alabama with a double major in public relations and American studies and is pursuing a master's degree. McLaughlin is one of the youngest professionals in the country to hold the professional Accredited Public Relations designation. She's also the youngest to be nominated as Florida representative for this year's Professional Achievement Award presented by the Southern Public Relations Federation.
? Eric Galbut, 29, Miami Beach, is a founding principal at Hudson Capital, an integrated Miami real estate company founded in 2004 that primarily converts apartments into condos and now has more than 130 employees and seven active projects worth more than $1.2 billion. He's developing Dolphin Reef Waterfront District in Jacksonville, a $400-million mixed-use community along the St. Johns River.
? Grant Killingsworth, 29, Miami Beach, is a commercial real estate broker with Holly Real Estate in Miami. He's recognized as one of the top 20 brokers in south Florida.
? Will Royall, 24, Ocoee, is president and CEO of two Orlando companies: Royall Media, an event audiovisual production company with four employees, and Advertise HD, a digital advertising firm he and two partners launched this year with 10 employees.
? Maija Renko, 29, Miami Beach, is a doctoral candidate and graduate assistant with Florida International University and its Eugenio Pino and Family Global Entrepreneurship Center. Born in Finland, she is still a partner in a consulting firm she co-founded there. She will receive double doctorates: One in Finland and the other at FIU.