Orange County Mayor Jerry L. Demings announced Friday that he has formed the new Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force in an effort to work on a measured approach to restarting the local economy from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The task force will create recommendations for re-opening Orange County businesses that have temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The recommendations will include, "a measured and sensible approach to ease restrictions, while ensuring the safety of all," according to a press release sent by Orange County.
“These are some of the best and brightest minds in our community, and the public-private Task Force will come up with recommendations to reopen Orange County using the most safe and sensible avenues possible. I am confident we will be able to get Orange County and Orlando on the way to economic recovery while we save both lives and livelihoods,” said Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings.
The first virtual meeting of the Task Force, chaired by George Aguel, president of Visit Orlando and Tim Giuliani, president of the Orlando Economic Partnership, will be the morning of April 22, 2020.
Aguel and Giuliani will head up a group of nearly 50 individuals representing such areas as local hospitals, theme parks, financial institutions, hotels, as well as small business owners. Representation will also be from Osceola, Lake and Seminole Counties.
Orange TV will carry the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force meeting live. Viewing options include Channel 488 on Spectrum, Channel 9 on Comcast, 1081 CenturyLink Prism TV, WSWF Channel 10.2 (over the air), stream live at www.ocfl.net/orangetv and you can view via the Orange TV app on ROKU in the Education category.
“On behalf of the thousands of tourism businesses we represent, we are grateful for Mayor Demings’ leadership in establishing this Task Force as a united effort to achieve a successful recovery,” said George Aguel, President & CEO of Visit Orlando.
“The (Orlando Economic) Partnership continues to hear from our local businesses who have been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. While many are hoping to reopen soon, we must ensure a safe and thoughtful environment so that our economy can thrive once again,” said President of the Orlando Economic Partnership Tim Giuliani.
Below are the 42 entities represented on the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force:
Advent Health, Scott Brady, MD, Senior Vice President of Ambulatory Services
Alfond Inn, Jesse Martinez, General Manager
Black Business Investment Fund (BBIF), Inez Long, President and CEO
CareerSource Central Florida Pamela Nabors, President and CEO
Central Florida Auto Dealers Association, Evelyn Cardenas, CEO
Church Street Entertainment, Doug Taylor, Managing Partner
Darden Restaurants, Dave George, EVP and Chief Operating Officer
Don Julio’s Mexican Kitchen, Florencio “Larry” Rodriguez, Owner
Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, Kathy Ramsberger, President & CEO
Florida Department of Health in Orange County, Raul Pino, MD, Director
Highwood Properties, Steve Garrity, Vice President
J Henry’s Barber Shop, John Henry, Owner
Johnny Rivers Grill & Market, Johnny Rivers, Owner
Lake County Agency for Economic Prosperity, Brandon Matulka, Executive Director
C. Spa & Nail Spa, Mary Chau, Founder and CEO
Mosaic Hair Studio, Mike Van del Abbeel, Salon Owner
National Entrepreneur Center, Jerry Ross, Executive Director
Nelson, Mullins/Broad and Cassel, Wayne Rich, Of Counsel
Orange County Public Schools , Barbara Jenkins, Ed.D, Superintendent
Orlando City Soccer, Alex Leitao, CEO
Orlando Health, George Ralls, MD, Medical Chief Quality Officer
Orlando International Airport, Phil Brown, CEO
Orlando Magic, Alex Martins, CEO
Orlando Shakespeare Theater, Douglas Love-Ramos, President
Orlando Venues, Allen Johnson, Chief Venues Officer
Osceola County, John Newstreet, President/CEO Kissimmee Chamber
Prospera, Augusto Sanabria, President and CEO
Rejoice in the Lord Ministries & President, African American Council of Christian Clergy, Pastor Roderick Zak, CEO
Rosen Shingle Creek, Dan Giordano, General Manager
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Brad Gilmour, Vice President of Operations
Seminole County Government, Tricia Johnson, Deputy County Manager/Chief Administrator for Community Relations and Economic Development
The Mall at Millennia, Steve Jamison, General Manager
Truist, Sandy Hostetter, Central Florida Regional President
UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management, Youcheng Wang, Ph.D., Dean
Unicorp National Development, Chuck Whittall, President
Universal Orlando, Rich Costales, Executive Vice President of Resort Operations
Vineyard Wine Bar & Healthy Bistro, Deborah Linden, Owner
VMD Ventures, Harold Mills, CEO
Walmart, Inc., Monesia Brown, Director of Public Affairs and Government Relations
Walt Disney World Resort, Thomas Mazloum, Senior Vice President, Resort & Transportation Operations
WaWa, Todd Souders, Senior Director of Florida Operations and New Market Development
YMCA of Central Florida, Dan Wilcox, President & CEO
Watch the 38 minute press conference in which the task force is announced below.