Florida Trend | Florida's Business Authority

Monday's Afternoon Update

Floridian of the Year
Mark Wilson: Man on a Mission

In his 15th year as CEO of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, Mark Wilson has vastly broadened the organization’s influence into areas that might seem unconventional. Breaking the stereotype of a clubby establishment focused solely on the business community, the Florida Chamber has set ambitious goals — such as cutting Florida’s childhood poverty rate in half, helping working families gain access to quality daycare and focusing on mental health — to strengthen the social fabric of the state amid its surging growth. More from Florida Trend.

National Hurricane Center forecasts tropics season fizzle out as cold front aims at Florida

Forecasters with the National Hurricane Center are sticking with their prediction of the 2023 hurricane season going out with a whimper this week as tropical cyclone formation is not expected during the next seven days in the Atlantic. The 2023 Atlantic hurricane season ends Nov. 30. But National Weather Service forecasters on Monday, Nov. 27, were watching a cold front that has emerged off Florida's northeast coast, extending down to Cape Canaveral. More from the Gainesville Sun.

North Florida economic forecast: An optimistic outlook for 2024

While Jacksonville area unemployment has crept higher this year from a record low in 2022, the economic outlook for 2024 is optimistic, but with concerns. A monthly survey of Northeast Florida manufacturers by the University of North Florida’s Local Economic Indicators Project showed the business activity outlook for the next 12 months is positive. More from the Jacksonville Daily Record.

The volume of SBA loans in Central Florida has grown this year. See who is giving them out.

The volume of 7(a) loans in the region has increased from the previous fiscal year, as the total amount of loans to be guaranteed rose from $243 million in FY2022 to $280 million in FY2023. That is according to data from the Small Business Association, which measures the fiscal year as October to September. More from the Orlando Business Journal.

Prominent Brevard charity on verge of collapse as former CEO faces criminal probe

One of Brevard County's most prominent charities has been all but shut down amid a wide-ranging crisis that includes crumbling finances, a criminal investigation into its former CEO and a flurry of questions about an obscure executive account, according to dozens of leaked emails between its executives and board of directors. More from Florida Today.

A workout that rocks: Bouldering gym with yoga studio opens in Orlando

Even though flat Florida doesn’t have outdoor opportunities for rock climbing, indoor climbing and bouldering is on the rise with new venues popping up to meet the demand. Central Rock Orlando is the latest addition to the area’s indoor climbing offerings. The 25,000-square-foot space near the Florida Mall is now open with bouldering walls, a yoga studio and a gym with cardio equipment and free weights.

» More from the Orlando Sentinel.


Out of the Box
In an instant, poems on demand

Merk the Moment poets wrote original poems based on a question and answer session with clients at Shopapalooza last weekend. They turn strangers’ stories into verse. The Tampa Bay Times tried to do the same with theirs.

» Read more from the Tampa Bay Times.