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Charity Pros announces Hurricane Ian “Heroes”

Charity Pros recently announced its “Hurricane Heroes,” a group of local officials, business owners and community leaders in the Fort Myers and Fort Myers Beach areas who stepped up for the community in the wake of Hurricane Ian. The Heroes will be honored at the organization’s Hurricane Heroes All-Star Concert on Oct. 7, which features a star-studded lineup including headliner Matchbox Twenty as well as Don Felder, Red Hannah, Jay Allen, Matty Jollie, Sheena Brook and more.

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno and the Lee County Sheriff’s Office were recognized as heroes for their efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian, particularly the work in coordinating the Lee County Sheriff’s Office with outside agencies and search and rescue missions that took place after the storm’s devastation.

Mayor Dan Allers of Fort Myers Beach has been named a hero for his work in the development and recovery of Fort Myers Beach. Allers was appointed mayor of Fort Myers Beach two months after Hurricane Ian and has spent the past 10 months leading the island back to a state of recovery. Dan and his business partner at the time, Tim Ryan, turned their golf cart business at 820 Buttonwood Drive into a location for people to drop off donations and supplies for victims. The location is now home to Fort Myers Beach Strong, a registered 501(c)(3) organization.

Ed and Kim Ryan, founders of Beach Talk Radio, assisted in raising more than $300,000 for Fort Myers Beach. The pair collected donations and held fundraisers, using the funds collected to purchase supplies to donate to victims of Ian. They provided information to Fort Myers Beach residents and homeowners across the country throughout the hurricane’s journey. Their radio show was an accurate resource and a voice for impacted Floridians before, during and after the hurricane.

Pastors Shawn and Mallie Critser of Beach Baptist Church were recognized for establishing their church as a central resource and a disaster recovery center for FEMA, then turning it into a long-term recovery resource center for the community. The church continues to provide groceries, supplies, bus passes, gift cards and more daily to those still in need as well as pastoral counseling and Sunday church service.

Doug Miller and Amy Eldridge, owners of FK Your Diet, have been named heroes for providing more than 500,000 meals and countless truckloads of supplies to those affected by Ian. Their restaurants continue never to turn away anyone needing a meal, whether they can pay or not. Originally founded to help Foster Kids & Families, FK Your Diet continues to support local neighborhoods heavily impacted by the storm by delivering groceries and supplies every week.

“There are so many stories and unsung heroes out there. We will try to honor all we can at the concert event,” said Charity Pros’ Co-Founder Brad Maloney. “An event like this takes an entire community coming together. Our goal is to make the public aware that Hurricane Ian relief efforts are ongoing, and this isn’t over, so many folks still need help.”

The honorees and their stories of activism will be highlighted during the All-Star Concert event at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 7. The event will take place at Hammond Stadium, located at 14100 Six Mile Cypress Parkway in Fort Myers. Proceeds from the event will help support Music Alive SWFL, the Tabarrini Children’s Outreach Foundation and the Charity Pros “Megan’s Wish” program.

For tickets, sponsorships, and more information, visit www.TheCharityPros.org. Attendees are encouraged to wear yellow to show support for Hurricane Ian survivors and those who lost their lives.

ABOUT CHARITY PROS

Founded in 2019 by young entrepreneur Megan Maloney, the Charity Pros is a Ft. Myers 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that advocates and supports children’s programs focused on health, child protection, poverty, education and equality. In addition, the organization has established Megan’s Wish, with a mission to grant wishes to children coping with traumatic circumstance, life-threatening medical conditions or those who have lost a parent or guardian. Charity Pros partners with community events and produces fundraisers including concerts, festivals and expos to support community causes. For more information, visit thecharitypros.org.

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