Join Us for Our Exciting Veterans Day Luncheon
Honoring our Treasured Veterans
Featuring Guest Speakers: Congressman Byron Donalds and Commissioner Rick LoCastro
Friday, November 10, 2023 at 11:30 AM at the Naples Hilton
Florida Congressman Byron Donalds – Representing District 19
Byron Donalds grew up in Brooklyn, New York, and he is also the proud son of a hardworking and loving single mother. His mother dedicated her time instilling in him that greatness requires sacrifice, which drives him as a devoted family man and United States Congressman.
Byron is a graduate of Florida State University and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in finance and marketing. Byron’s career led him to Southwest Florida, where he worked in the banking, finance, and insurance industries. Elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2016, Byron represented Hendry County and east Collier County in the State Capitol. During his tenure in the Florida House, Byron served as the PreK-12 Quality Subcommittee Chair during the 2018-2019 Legislative Session and served as the Insurance & Banking Subcommittee’s Chairman 2019-2020 Legislative Session. While serving in the Florida House, primarily focused on elder affairs, criminal justice reform, and ensuring that each child has access to a world-class education.
Byron is committed to serving and giving back to the community that gave him so much. He has served Southwest Florida in many ways, including previously serving on the Board of Trustees for Florida Southwestern State College after being appointed by then-Governor Rick Scott. Byron continues to volunteer in his church as a youth leader and a mentor. He also enjoys volunteering as a coach in youth football and basketball leagues.
Congressman Byron Donalds lives in Naples, Florida, with his wife, Erika, and their three sons: Damon, Darin, and Mason. Byron has spent his entire adult life serving others, whether it be through volunteering, business, or leadership. He is committed to representing Florida’s 19th Congressional District’s conservative values in Washington DC to ensure a stronger Florida and a stronger nation.
Rick LoCastro – Chairman Commissioner, Collier County District 1
Prior to his election and Naples civilian executive positions, he was a senior Air Force officer commanding in leadership positions worldwide. He held military positions in Germany, Hawaii, the Pentagon, and NATO, and lived and worked in 80+ countries. He served as a senior Commander on Andrews Air Force Base supporting the President of the United States and all Air Force One missions. He then led a multi-national NATO unit at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, where he was a Senior Commander responsible for all security, engineering/maintenance, transportation, administration, human resources, supply, logistics, food service, safety, and linguistic translation, supporting the 26-nation command.
Following his Europe assignment, he next served as Base Commander of Eglin Air Force Base in Ft. Walton Beach, Florida. There he ensured support to the 725 square mile base (Department of Defense’s largest installation) and directed all base operations for over 35,000 personnel with $16 Billion in infrastructure. He also supervised the Air Force’s 4th largest Medical Center encompassing 1,500 medical staff supporting 85,000 beneficiaries and 300,000 annual patient visits.
He then served as Base Commander of the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado, (where he is also a 1988 graduate) responsible for 4,500 personnel and all support to the 25-square mile installation including the Service Academy. He commanded all Air Force Academy base support, housing, food service, and a Medical Center supporting 4,000+ cadets, a military community of 35,000+, and 500,000+ visitors annually to the military Service Academy. Finally, he was Director of Manpower & Personnel for U.S. Strategic Command, overseeing all human resources (HR) programs for the United States’ classified nuclear and space forces. In 2001, he commanded his unit to selections as U.S. Air Force Mission Support Squadron of the Year and was also personally selected as the 2001 U.S. Air Force Senior Personnel Officer of the Year. Rick has worked for two U.S. Presidents, for General Norman Schwarzkopf, and was also the Aide to an Air Force 4-star General for three years. In 2012 he retired from the U.S. Air Force as a full colonel.
Honoring Our Veterans
- Admiral Jerry Johnson – 4 star former Vice Chair of Naval Operations and commander of Second Fleet
- Jim Lane – Purple Heart, Silver Star Army Ranger Vietnam Veteran
- Charlie Sues – Army Veteran
- Wayne Smith – Purple Heart Air Force Vietnam Veteran and POW
- Fred Sexton – Purple Heart Marine Vietnam Veteran
- Richard Lee – Purple Heart Marine VietnamVeteran
Veterans lunches will be paid for by our members.
WHEN: Friday, November 10, 2023 11:30 AM
WHERE: Naples Hilton, 5111 Tamiami Trail N., Naples, FL 34103
TO PURCHASE TICKETS: https://interland3.donorperfect.net/weblink/WebLink.aspx?name=E356036&id=3