All posts by wellingtonINSIDER

Service Is The Key To Keith Jordano’s Success As An Independent Insurance Agent

Service Is The Key To Keith Jordano’s Success As An Independent Insurance Agent

Being available to listen is a key to the success of Keith Jordano’s 30-plus career as an independent insurance agent. Recently, the Jordano Insurance Group, the firm he founded and leads, expanded its services to assist with home and auto insurance coverage as well.

Originally from New Orleans, Jordano moved with his insurance firm, founded in 1993, to the western communities 20 years ago.

“When I first went into the insurance business, my manager told me not to give out my cell and personal phone number,” Jordano recalled. “I told him the day I could not be accessible to my clients was the day I should not be in the business.”

This is a goal that he has kept his focus on ever since.

“I’ve made myself available for my clients when they need me. Most insurance agencies all sell the same companies’ [products] at the same price, as the providing insurance company sets the price. The difference is the service,” Jordano explained. “We are here because of our clients, mentors and family.”

He noted other areas that Jordano feels set him apart from his competition, such as “listening to the client and working with them to find their needs with a personal touch.” 

The cliché about an agent who can “sell snow to an Eskimo” is the story of a terrible agent, Jordano remarked.

“To sell them the right heater or blanket is to find their needs and sell them based on that,” Jordano said. “We listen and try to place clients where they are protected at a price they can afford. We try to cover our clients with a blanket of protection.”

On April 1, 1999, Jordano resettled in the western communities after traveling all over the eastern United States.

“It may have been April Fools’ Day, but we got the last laugh,” Jordano said. “After 20 years, we are going strong and growing our footprint of products and services. We travel around the United States and meet people from all walks of life, occupations, social and economic status, and we have learned how to listen to their diverse needs.”

While Jordano’s firm previously focused on varieties of life insurance and health insurance, he now offers a more comprehensive array of services.

“The Jordano Insurance Group represents home, auto and motorcycle insurance; Medicare supplements and Medicare Advantage plans; as well as individual and group health and benefit packages,” Jordano said. “We try to get to what our clients really need and lead them to where to find it.”

Jordano stressed that the benefit of his firm is truly listening to each client’s needs.

“Whatever plan they need, we make them feel protected, safe and still have money to feed their family,” Jordano explained.

Jordano and his wife Lois have three grown children: Melissa, 36; Robin, 35; and Adam, 31. He described his hobbies as gardening, sports, charity work and community involvement.

An active member of the Rotary clubs in Wellington and Royal Palm Beach, as well as the Central Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce, Jordano has served as a board member and officer in all of them, even being named small business of the year, as well as being named to the industry’s Health Underwriters Soaring Eagle membership and leading producers roundtable.

“Living in the western communities has been one of the best moves our family has made,” Jordano said. “We have many friends, with many of them starting as clients. I’ve tried to make all my clients feel like a friend and mean it. Our community is safe and friendly with lots to do. It is a great place to live, work and raise a family.”

The Jordano Insurance Group is available online at, where there is an option to reach out for a quote. Jordano can be reached via e-mail at or through his cell phone at (561) 307-2622. For specific information on life and health insurance, call (561) 333-6228. For auto and home insurance questions, call (561) 225-2659.


Bowen Realty’s Paris Lynn Addington Brings Her Clients A Lifetime Of Local Experience

Bowen Realty’s Paris Lynn Addington Brings Her Clients A Lifetime Of Local Experience

Paris Lynn Addington of Bowen Realty is well-versed in the day-to-day life of area residents. She lives here and has spent a majority of her life in Palm Beach County. However, her story began on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.

“I was an army brat, born in Paris, France,” she recalled. “My father decided to name me after that beautiful place. We left Paris when I was six months old.” 

Addington’s family relocated from the City of Lights to South Florida while she was still in diapers. 

“I have lived here most of my life,” Addington said. “I graduated in 1981 from John I. Leonard High School. I’ve lived in Royal Palm Beach, Wellington and Loxahatchee, and I know the western communities very well. I have watched Wellington develop from the beginning, from just a few golf courses and homes to the thriving community it is today. My kids have attended school in the Wellington and Loxahatchee areas.”

She headed west for a while before returning to Palm Beach County.

“I’ve spent the last nine years in Dallas, Texas, where we have some family,” Addington said. “We moved back last year to be with our growing family and couldn’t be happier to be home again.”

Addington entered the real estate field for reasons that are both personal and professional.

“I decided to get into real estate because I genuinely love the area and the people and have family in the business,” she said. “I specialize in finding homes that people will love, and that includes either buying or renting.”

Of course, when the time comes to leave their home, Addington is sympathetic to the emotions that situation conjures up.

“I also understand that people’s homes are their pride and joy, as well as one of their biggest investments,” she said. “I will work hard to market their home when the time comes to sell.”

Not only is Addington happy with her career choice, she’s glad to be working for a company that supports her and provides the tools necessary to enhance her performance.

“Working for Bowen Realty truly benefits all of our clients, either buying or selling,” she said. “We offer many years of experience and offices all over Palm Beach County and Port Saint Lucie. We use the latest marketing tools available and can market homes on many platforms.”

The future for buyers, sellers and renters looks bright.

“I believe that the real estate market in Palm Beach County, specifically in the western communities, will continue to grow and prosper,” Addington said. “With so many people moving to Florida, our economy continues to expand and strengthen. After all, who doesn’t want to live in paradise?”

Addington has seen many parts of the nation, but it is Wellington and the surrounding areas that she holds most dear.

“In my opinion, the western communities are the best places to live,” she said. “It has fantastic schools, shopping, dining, world-famous equestrian facilities and everything you could possibly need. It’s great for young people just starting out. From young families to senior citizens, there is something for everyone.”

Paris Lynn Addington is based out of the Bowen Realty office at 1168 Royal Palm Blvd. For more information, call (561) 301-1289 or e-mail


Patients Benefit From Award-Winning Wound Therapy Program In Wellington

Patients Benefit From Award-Winning Wound Therapy Program In Wellington

C It was a simple MRI to determine the cause of pain in Cindy Johnson’s left shoulder. No big deal; this was not Johnson’s first experience with an MRI or healthcare services. As a two-time breast cancer survivor and an amputee of her right hand, she has become a bit of an expert when it comes to healthcare. Zip in, zip out — find the source of the pain and quickly start treatment.

As part of the preparation for her eventual hand prosthetic, Johnson was wearing a mesh compression sleeve on her right arm. She was required to wear it for the majority of the day, and she was looking forward to receiving the prosthetic and regaining some use of a right hand. However, it was not long after the MRI started at a local radiology center that she noticed something was not quite right.

“A few minutes into the MRI, I felt pain in my right arm and thought, ‘I should not be having pain’ but decided to endure it since it was only going to be for a few minutes,” Johnson said. “But when the MRI was completed, it was obvious something was not right.”

Her right arm was blistered and had second- and third-degree burns above her right elbow. It turns out that the compression sleeve had silver threads woven into the fabric, and those reacted with the MRI, resulting in the burns to her arm. The burns were significant enough that she would need wound care therapy to heal.

However, this is the point where she considers herself a bit “lucky” to be a breast cancer survivor. She had met Dr. Kathleen Minnick, who served as the medical advisor for her breast cancer support group and is the co-medical director of the Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Wellington Regional Medical Center. Little did Johnson know at the time that meeting Minnick at the support group would eventually be very important to her own health because, in May 2018, Johnson was found unconscious and facedown at her home.

It is not known how long, but Johnson was on the floor an estimated three or four days before she was found. The resulting wounds included five significant pressure ulcers on her face, right thigh, left knee, right ankle and her right chest. In addition, her right hand was under her body during the entire time, and the damage was too significant to be repaired. The hand had to be amputated.

Because of her previous relationship with Minnick from the support group, Johnson chose to have wound therapy treatment for the hand amputation and the pressure ulcers at Wellington Regional Medical Center.

So, when facing wound care again after the MRI burn, she returned to the wound treatment center that always treated her like an old friend and had such great success.

“I chose to come back to the Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Wellington Regional Medical Center because of the success of my first wound care experience,” Johnson said. “It is such a friendly place. Everybody there knows me and treats me like family. I am very appreciative of what they have done for me.”

Having completed her treatments for the MRI burn, the wound care center recently held a “graduation ceremony” for Johnson, which included a graduation hat and tassel.

In contrast to Johnson’s treatments to heal wounds from a traumatic injury, John Shore was being treated at the wound center in an attempt to prevent the amputation of his right toe. Shore, a Type 2 diabetic, originally cut his toe on rocks after swimming in the ocean. He was not too worried. After all, it was not much more than a scratch. But, as a diabetic, the risk of complications from wounds on the foot are significantly higher — and his scratch eventually turned into a dangerous wound that not only risked his toe, but his entire foot.

“After seeing my doctor, I was immediately admitted to Wellington Regional Medical Center because the wound on my toe was so significant,” Shore recalled. “I was given the option to amputate the toe or try wound care in an attempt to save it. After meeting the team at the Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Wellington Regional Medical Center, I choose wound care to try and save my toe.”

Shore’s wound was so significant, he had to start emergency treatment that same day. Unlike Johnson, Shore was a candidate for the center’s hyperbaric chamber. With hyperbaric treatments, a patient is placed in a chamber that is pressurized to the equivalent of going about 49 feet under the surface of the ocean. Inside the chamber, Shore breathes 100 percent pure oxygen, which is carried by his blood to the wound to help promote the body’s natural wound-healing functions. A patient usually receives about 40 treatments, Monday through Friday, each lasting between 90 and 120 minutes.

Shore is 14 treatments into his program and has already seen significant results and said his doctor is amazed at the results so far.

“The care here has been absolutely phenomenal,” Shore said. “I can’t picture going any other place. It is more than just medical care here. The staff is wonderful, and they treat me like family. Five minutes into meeting them for the first time, we were laughing like we had known each other our entire lives.”

The Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Wellington Regional Medical Center recently received the distinguished Center of the Year award. More than 600 centers had the opportunity to qualify for the award, but only six centers received the recognition. In order to qualify, stringent quality measures must be met, such as high levels of healing outcomes, low days to heal and excellent patient satisfaction rates. The recognition is a reflection of the program achieving quality patient care and clinical outcomes.

In addition, the center was also awarded the prestigious President’s Circle award in recognition for outstanding performance in the areas of patient satisfaction and wound care. To earn the distinction, Wellington Regional Medical Center’s wound care center achieved patient satisfaction rates higher than 92 percent and a healing rate of at least 91 percent in less than 30 median days to heal, for a minimum of two consecutive years.

“The Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Wellington Regional Medical Center continues to provide advanced treatment therapies for our patients,” Minnick said. “It is an honor for our team to be nationally recognized by Healogics for our quality, and patients who choose our program for their care can be confident that they have access to the most current treatment protocols and therapies.”

Dr. Arthur Hansen, co-medical director at the Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine, agreed. “We have known for some time that Wellington Regional’s elite wound care program ranks among the best in the nation,” he said. “This designation is an indication of the medical team’s commitment to providing the best possible wound care services in the country.”

To learn more about the Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Wellington Regional Medical Center,  call (561) 753-2680 or visit


Support Group For Families Navigating Mental Illness Now Meeting in Wellington

Support Group For Families Navigating Mental Illness Now Meeting in Wellington

Four decades ago, two mothers gathered together in Wisconsin, thirsting for mutual understanding and in desperate need of empathy and support. Each woman had a child suffering from schizophrenia, and from small beginnings around a kitchen table, the National Alliance on Mental Illness — or NAMI — was created.

The purpose of the organization is to support families of those with mental illnesses by providing education, advocacy and support, striving to see families and their loved ones sail smoothly through stormy seas.

Now, a NAMI family support group has arrived in Wellington.

Since its conception in 1979, NAMI has grown to an organization consisting of 1,000 affiliates nationwide, with the Wellington group falling under the umbrella of NAMI Palm Beach County.

While the national nonprofit is currently based in Virginia, it is constantly establishing and equipping affiliate branches around the country. These individual branches then continue to organize family support groups within their respective areas, the newest in Palm Beach County being the Wellington group.

The members began their monthly meetings in March of this year, meeting at Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue Station 30 at 9610 Stribling Way. They continue to meet at the same location, beginning at 3 p.m. on the third Sunday of every month. Each meeting is different, but they all center around the encouragement and support of family members of individuals with mental illnesses.

This isn’t the first NAMI group that has attempted to set sail in Wellington. According to Katherine Murphy, the director of programs for NAMI Palm Beach County, there was a Wellington group that tried to start up a few years ago, but it never earned its sea legs. That’s when Tracy Bem stepped forward.

While Bem had frequented the previous Wellington group, she started getting more involved with NAMI. “I started hooking up with the NAMI group and taking all the classes again, and I realized the need for a support group out in the western communities,” Bem said. “That’s when I talked to them, and I took the training so that I could do it, because it definitely meets needs.”

There is a significant stigma surrounding people struggling with mental health issues. Both Bem and Murphy emphasized the importance of experienced and empathetic help when dealing with the issues of loving somebody with a mental illness.

“When you have somebody with a mental illness, you need a resource,” Bem said. “You need people with the same situation.”

Murphy noted that people without an accepting and understanding community may have a lower chance of caring for their loved one as effectively as individuals who do have this type of support system. “If families are isolated, alone, they don’t have resources, they don’t have support,” Murphy said. “They might not have that endurance to continue to support their loved ones.”

According to Murphy, the hope is that these NAMI family support groups can reinforce the family members and provide them with helpful tools and resources to press on.

Bem added that people who don’t have a loved one with a mental illness don’t understand the frequent difficulties of the situation. Bem compared the seriousness of mental health conditions to that of a disease like cancer. Unless people see mental illness as an actual — often deadly — disease, she said, they tend to think the family member is merely going about things the wrong way.

“They blame it on you, but when it’s a mental illness, you need somebody who totally understands it to share with,” Bem said. “So that is a huge need. I mean, there should be a support group every day of the week.”

NAMI, according to Murphy, works to educate the family members on the best ways to communicate with a mentally ill family member.

“Sometimes, if we don’t have training in communication or different techniques, different ways to work around things, we might not have the whole toolkit,” Murphy said. “One of the things about NAMI, the family support group, and everything we try to do, is to empower families and to give them the tools and resources. There’s the emotional support, but then there’s also the very concrete tips and tricks.”

Each family support group facilitator goes through a two-day training of the NAMI model and guidelines, and they are all volunteers who are loved ones of a person with mental illness.

“What we offer at NAMI is the ‘lived experience,’ so our groups aren’t led by clinicians, they’re led by family members,” Murphy said. “It’s family members speaking to other family members — people who understand what it’s like to sit in the waiting room, people who understand what it’s like to have to call 911 when times get tough, and people who know what it’s like to go on that journey.”

For this reason, NAMI considers itself a complement to clinical care and not a replacement for it.

Along with the family support groups, NAMI provides services such as NAMI Connection, a group for people with mental health conditions, as well as mentoring programs, mingling activities and more.

Everything NAMI offers is free-of-charge, Murphy noted.

“NAMI’s goal is to help the family to be there for the long term,” Murphy said. “We want to provide them with the tools, support and resources to continue to support their loved one for the rest of their life.”

If you have a loved one struggling with a mental illness, or if you would like to learn more about NAMI Palm Beach County programs, call (561) 588-3477 or visit


Exercise Is Medicine Fighting Physical Inactivity Is Crucial In Modern America

Exercise Is Medicine Fighting Physical Inactivity Is Crucial In Modern America

“Sitting is the new smoking” and “exercise is medicine.” Those were two of the big-picture thoughts which I shared with the Rotary Club of Wellington on Thursday, June 13. On that day, I discussed the national issue of physical inactivity during this gathering of Wellington community leaders.

In addition to writing for Wellington The Magazine, I also serve as the director of communications for PHIT America, a national nonprofit group working to reverse the current “inactivity pandemic” in the United States. I have also spent more than 30 years working in the communications sector of the sporting goods and fitness industry.

Right now, this “inactivity pandemic” impacts the lives of 81.7 million Americans. The issue of physical inactivity negatively impacts healthcare costs, academic achievement and military readiness.

During my recent presentation, I shared a number of facts about the magnitude of the physical inactivity problem in America. I could tell by the expressions on the faces of the Rotarians that they were surprised by the depth of physical inactivity in the U.S.

How bad is the state of physical inactivity in the U.S.? According to the Physical Activity Council, nearly 82 million Americans are physically inactive. This is largely driven by America’s sedentary lifestyles, which has prompted many medical doctors in the U.S. to declare that “sitting is the new smoking,” and the medicinal benefits of exercise are so strong that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) uses the mantra “exercise is medicine.”

Sadly, 40 percent of adults in the U.S. are obese. Parents and other adults must get physically active during their free time. You can’t sweat on the Internet, so start by putting down cell phones and turning off laptops. Then, they will be free to lead family fitness sessions in their neighborhoods, after dinner on weekdays and during the weekends.

Adults must get physically active for their own benefit, and they must serve as role models for their children, as physical inactivity is affecting the vast majority of young people in the U.S. In fact, less than 10 percent of children ages 6 to 17 are physically active to healthy standards, according to the CDC.

To further confirm the importance of parents and grandparents serving as fitness role models for their children and grandchildren, there is a recent study performed by the British Journal of Sports Medicine that examined fitness levels of children from 50 different countries. Sadly, the results of the study revealed that U.S. children ranked 47th in global fitness. Overall, American children are just not physically fit. Kids, too, need to put down their cell phones and take a break from their tablets.

To get started on the path to physical activity, you don’t even have to leave your desk. There are five simple forms of exercise that don’t require any kind of equipment or athletic experience. They are called “deskercizes.” They can be performed at home, at work or at school.

  • Paper Pushups — With your arms outstretched, while grabbing the edge of your desk, lean at 45 degrees and start doing pushups. Consider 20 every hour on the hour.
  • Book Press — Pick up the heaviest book that you can hold with both hands. Then, extend the book above your head, and then lower it down behind your neck. This will help your triceps.
  • Shoulder Blade Squeezes — To improve your hunched posture, stand up and squeeze your shoulder blades back and forth. Hold the squeeze on your shoulder blades for 10 seconds.
  • Chair Squats — Stand a few inches from the edge of your chair, lower yourself until you are seated in your chair, stretch out your arms parallel to the ground and keep your back straight.
  • Standing Calf Raises — While grabbing the back of your chair, put your feet together, and get up on your tippy toes. This process strengthens your calf muscles.

Physical inactivity in the U.S. is having a major impact on military readiness. Believe it or not, but the U.S. Army went on record with PHIT America in 2017 to produce an op-ed to address physical inactivity in the U.S. In U.S. Army & PHIT America Respond To Obesity News: National Defense Is At Risk If Physical Inactivity Is Not Reversed, the U.S. Army made a plea to U.S. education leaders to bring back daily physical education to schools because too many military recruits coming out of high school are not physically fit, and, therefore, not capable of making it through boot camp without getting injured because their bodies are not used to basic levels of physical activity.

Learn more about how fighting the “inactivity pandemic” at


From Soil to Oil Oliver’s Harvest Brings Natural CBD Oil To Wellington

From Soil to Oil Oliver’s Harvest Brings Natural CBD Oil To Wellington

Longtime Wellington residents Frank and Herta Suess are ahead of the curve in the trending field of CBD oil. Oliver’s Harvest, the two-year-old company named after their son, is dedicated to bringing a natural product to people looking for a safe option for treating a variety of issues from pain and inflammation to insulin control.

The variety of products available is impressive. Herbal supplements help with specific issues, such as joint support, sleeping issues and blood glucose management for Type 2 diabetics. Tinctures are concentrated CBD oils that provide more broad-spectrum support for general wellness.

“CBD with melatonin — I take that,” said Frank Suess, who has used CBD oil since before starting this venture. “I used to take Lorazepam, which is a prescription and addictive. I switched to our product, and it works well. With the Lorazepam, you need time to wake up, but with this, I felt rested and not drowsy.”

Suess has been involved in the healthcare industry through his Wellington-based businesses for decades, so it was a natural fit to base Oliver’s Harvest here as well.

Early on, Suess realized that while his pharmacist’s recommendations were solid, to develop a full product line, he needed an expert. So, he brought in a biomedical researcher to keep them on the cutting edge of the field. That is when Jamila Mammadova joined the team as the company’s research and development director.

“We want to refer to scientific data behind everything we claim,” Mammadova said. “We have studies on rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer’s, inflammation, pain sensitivity, insulin sensitivity for Type 2 diabetes and social anxiety. Currently, there is a clinical trial going on in Israel for inflammatory bowel diseases, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Currently, there is no cure for these chronic diseases, and people are just living with it. They need an anti-inflammatory that will be able to calm down the body’s response, and CBD does exactly that.”

CBD — which stands for cannabidiol — can also be purchased in treats like gummies and honey sticks. These offer full-body effects and an energy boost.

“That’s one of the huge advantages of CBD — it does not have side effects. It doesn’t make one nauseous, it doesn’t numb your emotional responsiveness,” Mammadova explained. “You can’t damage your liver if you take it long term, and you can’t overdose with CBD. Because it’s such a natural product, it is safe for consumption.”

The company uses one source for its hemp-based CBD oil — a farm located in North Carolina where the Suess sons Oliver and Marcus work in the business. The hemp is grown, and the oil extracted, in the same facility.

“We want to control the quality,” Suess said. “Oliver does the bulk shipping from up there, and Marcus runs the extraction facility, which is like a brewery for CBD.”

Considering the connection between hemp and the soil, knowing where and how the product is grown and managed is vital.

“The quality of the soil is so important because hemp absorbs everything in the soil. It used to be used to clean the soil from contaminates. That means that anything in the soil becomes part of the plant, and what is in the plant becomes part of the extract,” Mammadova explained. “That’s why you want to keep soil as clean as possible for growing hemp. We also send out samples to an ISO-accredited third party for lab tests, ensuring that the product is high quality.”

Another popular CBD oil product is a line of pain creams specifically designed for tackling localized pain. Creams are combined with either lidocaine or capsaicin to treat pain in two ways.

“Lidocaine and capsaicin are analgesics that will numb the pain for short-term relief. The CBD component goes into the source of the pain and reduces inflammation to keep it from coming back. This is both short- and long-term pain treatment,” Mammadova said. “Capsaicin has additional properties. It is a neuroprotectant. That means it prevents nerves from being damaged. That works well for diabetic neuropathy or for any kind of pain that comes from nerve damage, like sciatic nerve pain or carpal tunnel syndrome.”

For many people, pets are family members who deserve the best of care, like any of their human relatives. Oliver’s Harvest has a line of products to help animals, including dogs, cats and even birds cope with pain and anxiety.

“It actually works faster with pets,” Mammadova said. “They have more receptors that will respond to CBD, so at the first dose, we see results.”

Helping both people and animals is important to the company.

“It fits in with the medical supplies because we already had pet supplies. We have glucometers for diabetic pets, for example. So, it was a natural extension,” Suess said. “We participate in the Noble Paws program, too. For every product that we sell for a pet, we donate a product to a rescue facility.”

Pet products for inflammation, arthritic pain and anxiety come in bacon-flavored tinctures or supplements and peanut butter. The latter is a tasty favorite of dogs that provides a broad-spectrum, full-body effect.

The company is working on additional products, such as a special supplement that combines 10 herbs with CBD to combat anxiety and stress, and another designed for PMS symptoms, including mood swings and cramps. They are also bringing in cigars made with CBD flowers.

CBD oil from hemp comes from the same family of plants that produce marijuana, but there is a key difference.

“The difference between these products and medical marijuana is the THC,” Mammadova said, referring to tetrahydrocannabinol, the active ingredient in marijuana. “That will impact your functionality through the day because you feel high, you feel euphoric. You do not get those feelings by ingesting CBD; you only get the relief.”

Suess understands the concern of many professionals, including police officers, firefighters and truck drivers, to name a few. He stressed that CBD will not impact them in a negative way.

“We are even working with somebody who is developing CBD to treat addicts. Many addicts get started on opioids because of pain. High-strength CBD works for pain,” Suess said. “There are now quite a few trials going on because CBD is non-addictive. So, you can give CBD to help get addicts off pain medications.”

The Oliver’s Harvest factory outlet store is located at 3361 Fairlane Farms Road in Wellington. The doors are open Monday through Friday, excluding holidays, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., but staff is always happy to answer questions and take orders over the phone and online.

Drop by the warehouse in person and receive a 10 percent discount on your purchase.

For more information about CBD oil products from Oliver’s Harvest, call (866) 634-3134 or visit


Kasey Perry-Glass Joins Forces With FullBucket To Bring ‘Be Good & Do Good’ Mantra To Wellington

Kasey Perry-Glass Joins Forces With FullBucket To Bring ‘Be Good & Do Good’ Mantra To Wellington

With many titles to her name, including an Olympic bronze medal and an FEI World Equestrian Games silver medal, dressage star Kasey Perry-Glass could be content with her busy life. However, while she is a competitive athlete driven by success, her passion for philanthropy also plays a large role in her life.

Her drive for success with horses began young, and she quickly advanced up the levels as a young rider when she decided to focus on dressage at age 14. Little did she know that years later, her determination and dedication to the sport, in combination with the talent of her Danish Warmblood gelding Goerklintgaards Dublet, would lead her to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, where she would help Team USA secure the bronze medal. Fast forward a few years, and the pair have had other notable performances at the FEI World Cup Finals, the FEI World Equestrian Games and the Adequan Global Dressage Festival.

Originally from California, Perry-Glass is based in the winter equestrian capital of the world during the season. Her busy routine consists of training multiple horses with the assistance of U.S. Dressage Technical Advisor Debbie McDonald.

Outside of the time she spends in the saddle, Perry-Glass is dedicated to expanding the awareness of philanthropy within the Wellington community and beyond. Her longtime support of Brooke USA, a nonprofit that funds programs to help equine owners in developing countries, has been a key part of her life. Inspired to help working equines in Central America, she was thrilled to recently become a brand ambassador for FullBucket, a one-for-one giving business with an extensive line of veterinary-strength digestion supplements.

Perry-Glass first learned of the company when she needed a higher-quality probiotic supplement for Dublet when travel was stressing his digestive system. Since beginning to use the probiotic line in 2018, following a recommendation from her vet, she not only witnessed the benefits of the scientifically proven ingredients, but she was exposed to FullBucket’s important promise — for every FullBucket product purchased, another will be donated to treat horses and donkeys in developing countries through the company’s giving program. This is a promise that Perry-Glass felt needed to be brought to the attention of all animal lovers, and she proudly joined the team as an ambassador.

FullBucket was founded by veterinarians and surgeons determined to use their business to make a significant difference in the world. The team developed the highest concentration of probiotic-based equine, dog and cat health supplements on the market, but they wanted to continue helping animals. With their mantra “Be Good & Do Good,” FullBucket used the supplements as a springboard into helping working equines around the world.

“When we first began donating products to these communities, we recruited the help of local veterinary colleges to test the donkeys, horses and mules’ stool and soil samples to better evaluate what was needed in their diets,” explained Dr. Rob Franklin, one of FullBucket’s co-founders. “We were then able to craft a unique blend to fit their specific nutritional needs. In addition, we hired local mills to produce the supplement to stimulate job growth, and we developed a channel to distribute on an ongoing basis, which delivers free to the developing communities who really need the assistance.”

While the products are used by top veterinary practices around the country, FullBucket’s unique business model is a steadfast reason that it has become a staple for many pet owners as they make the choice to give their pets FullBucket products over others.

Perry-Glass is one of many to make FullBucket her first choice in keeping her horses feeling and performing their best. 

“I am so excited to be working with a company with such good values and a great product — that is really important to me, and giving back is a passion of mine,” she explained. “What they do for working equines is amazing, and I’m looking forward to telling more people about FullBucket, especially in the animal-loving community of Wellington, and their one-for-one giving business model.”

FullBucket has shaken up the animal healthcare industry as the first successful giving one-for-one business. With support from its customers, the company has distributed more than 13,000 buckets of nutritional products to impoverished villages throughout Central America. Taking their support one step further, FullBucket’s team of professionals organize giving trips to communities that need the most aid. 

“During our annual giving trip, we invite several veterinarians and industry professionals to volunteer in a program that allows them to use their skills and help these working equines and the families that rely on them, and see firsthand what goes on in these impoverished communities,” co-founder Robo Hendrickson said. “For a week, we vaccinate, float teeth, trim hooves and tend to saddle sores like you’ve never seen before.”

It has been nine years since their first trip, and the community behind FullBucket has served hundreds of tons of nutritional supplement and helped thousands of malnourished working equines and their families.

“More than 170 volunteers have experienced the lifechanging gift of serving those in desperate need,” Hendrickson added. “To be able to return to a community a year following our initial visit and see the vast improvement in the health and care of their working equines by our support and the educational tools we provided, makes our journey even more special.”

The devotion of FullBucket’s time and resources to social issues close to her heart epitomizes the philanthropic aspirations of Perry-Glass. 

“We were thrilled to have Kasey as our first official rider in our athlete ambassador program,” co-founder Dr. Keith Latson said. “When we launched FullBucket as a supplement line that developed first-class products for veterinarians to use for digestive issues, we quickly realized that our team shared an innate ambition to help others. We redesigned the business from the ground up to align with our personal objectives to help others and working equines. Kasey shares our passion to try your best each day and to leave people, animals and the world better than you found them.”

Together, Perry-Glass and FullBucket Health are committed to continuing their philanthropic efforts into the future, and she looks forward to joining them on a future giving trip to Guatemala to see the good FullBucket brings to communities in dire need of assistance.

As a team, they hope to bring light to the conditions of the working equines that aren’t always lucky enough to receive top-of-the-line care, or even any care at all. Beyond the beautiful properties of Wellington, there are animals that need help and can benefit directly from FullBucket’s “Be Good & Do Good” mantra.

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New Ambulatory Surgery Center To Open Soon At Bethesda Hospital West

New Ambulatory Surgery Center To Open Soon At Bethesda Hospital West

Having an outpatient surgery procedure is about to get more convenient for residents in Wellington and the surrounding communities. Baptist Health South Florida is opening a new Ambulatory Surgery Center this fall on the campus of Bethesda Hospital West.

At the Ambulatory Surgery Center, surgical procedures that once required a hospital stay of two to three days can now be performed at the new outpatient facility, allowing patients to make faster recoveries and keep their healthcare costs more affordable.

Equipped with the latest in clinical innovation and advanced technology, the Baptist Health Surgery Center is a 15,000-square-foot center designed to offer patients comprehensive outpatient surgical services in a spa-like environment.

Upon entering the new center, patients will be greeted by a team of board-certified surgeons and specialty trained surgical nurses who are dedicated to providing the highest levels of quality and safety. As patients prepare for surgery, families are ushered to the tranquil, natural light-infused waiting room, where they will be able to track their loved one’s progress during their procedure in real time and enjoy complimentary wi-fi.

Thanks to modern medical advancements, such as minimally invasive procedures and new anesthesia techniques that reduce complications, patients can return home sooner from procedures such as orthopaedic knee replacement procedures and gynecologic surgeries.

Looking ahead to 2020, Bethesda Hospital West will embark upon its largest expansion to date. Currently 80 beds with all private rooms, the hospital is going to add 35 medical-surgical beds in all private inpatient rooms, with two new operating suites. Because of the hospital’s butterfly design, the new rooms will be built on the side opposite the existing patient tower. In this way, construction noise can be kept to a minimum for patients at rest. Construction is expected to be completed in 2023.

Bethesda Hospital West was designed to grow to 400 inpatient beds as the community grows. It offers medical and surgical care, diagnostic imaging, rehabilitation services, an intensive care unit and a 24-hour emergency center for adults and children.

“These two new additions to the Bethesda Hospital West campus demonstrate our commitment to the people in western Palm Beach County,” said Roger L. Kirk, CEO of Bethesda Health. “Together with Baptist Health South Florida, we are making outpatient surgical care and inpatient hospital care more accessible, reflecting our continued commitment to providing compassionate care that will meet our community’s needs.”

Bethesda Hospital West, along with Bethesda Hospital East and its affiliated facilities, joined Baptist Health in 2017 to expand access to high-quality, compassionate healthcare across South Florida. Baptist Health South Florida is the largest healthcare organization in the region, with 11 hospitals — Baptist Hospital, Baptist Children’s Hospital, Bethesda Hospital East, Bethesda Hospital West, Boca Raton Regional Hospital, Doctors Hospital, Fishermen’s Community Hospital, Homestead Hospital, Mariners Hospital, South Miami Hospital and West Kendall Baptist Hospital — and nearly 50 outpatient and urgent care facilities, spanning four counties.

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Meathead’s BBQ Is Now Serving Up Tasty Southern Barbecue

Meathead’s BBQ Is Now Serving  Up Tasty Southern Barbecue

The newly opened Meathead’s BBQ is serving up tasty backyard barbecue straight from the smoker to your plate.

What started as a way to raise money for his kids’ school fundraisers soon evolved into a catering business, turned thriving food truck, serving up savory southern barbecue creations to scores of people craving tender meats. 

Now, those meat lovers can curb their taste buds with beef brisket, pulled pork, ribs, sausage and more at a stationary location. Meathead’s BBQ pit master and owner Marcel Hicks, along with his wife Shay and their daughters, are ready to take your order at their newly opened and much-anticipated Royal Palm Beach restaurant. “I want it to have a backyard barbecue feel, like Texas, Louisiana, North Carolina or Georgia,” Marcel Hicks said.

The corner spot is already drawing a fast and steady business in its opening weeks. It sits just a few doors down from Publix in the Crossroads shopping center at the northeast corner of Royal Palm Beach and Okeechobee boulevards. The scent of the smokehouse leads you there.

Meathead’s BBQ has the ambiance of eating in a friend’s backyard, as picnic tables topped with the company logo are within feet of the counter, and customers, workers and the owners share friendly chat.

“People ask me about the process, so I show them,” Hicks said. “Their smiling faces make me want to do it.”

Hicks has been making people smile with his grilling since he was a child and experimenting with different rubs. That’s when the South Florida native earned the nickname “Meathead.” And he’s proud to show people his craft.

“I smoke the meats in a 72-inch water smoker by Myron Mixon. We’re doing 500 pounds of meat a day just at the restaurant,” Hicks explained.

Meathead’s BBQ officially opened June 1 with a ribbon cutting and wishes of success from Royal Palm Beach Mayor Fred Pinto, who stayed to eat. Hicks is proud to be part of the community and to have his family work alongside him. “I feel so blessed,” he said.

The menu includes meat delicacies from melt-in-your-mouth beef brisket, pulled pork and pulled chicken, to baby back ribs, spare ribs and whole chicken.

“Everything’s from scratch, every day, all fresh. I smoke my brisket and pulled pork for 12 hours. Ribs and chicken for four hours,” Hicks said. “I use a dry rub. Nothing here is injected. What I take great pride in is my brisket.”

The three sauces are key. “I like playing with different flavors,” he said. “There’s the hickory sauce with a mustard inspiration from the Carolina region. The sweet sauce is based on the South Georgia-North Florida area, and then there’s the sweet spicy.”

Down home southern sides include collard greens, green beans, candied yams, and mac and cheese, along with potato salad, tossed salad, cole slaw, grilled corn, baked beans and corn bread.

The price for a half pound of beef brisket is $16, while a combo plate with two sides starts at $17. Family meals include a whole chicken with two sides for $25 and a full rack of baby back ribs with two sides for $32. Pulled pork and pulled chicken sandwiches start at $10 for a quarter pound of meat and one side.

There’s something for every barbecue lover. “The triple plate combo is one of the most popular items,” Hicks said. Another popular option is the fully loaded nachos or fries, topped with beef brisket, pulled pork, boneless ribs or chicken.

Daily lunch specials run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays. A sandwich, side and drink special starts at $8. Customers also gobble up the “Turkey Leg Tuesdays” special.

Several drinks made from scratch are offered daily and include a traditional lemonade, sweet tea and fruit punch. Beer and wine are also on the drink menu, starting at $3.

After making a name for themselves at the Wellington Amphitheater’s Food Truck Invasion and many more events across South Florida, Hicks said that there’s potential for a Jupiter location in the future. That’s another area where they’ve built a dedicated following. Also on the horizon are Meathead’s BBQ’s signature bottled sauces and pit master t-shirts.

For this family, they’re savoring the success of their hard work. This year not only marks a milestone as they open their first restaurant, but for high school sweethearts Marcel and Shay Hicks, they’ll soon celebrate their 25th anniversary — a year that is truly sterling for them.

The restaurant is open Tuesdays and Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sundays from noon to 7 p.m. They are closed Mondays. Want your barbecue delivered? Delivery service is offered through Delivery Dudes and Grub Hub.

Meathead’s BBQ is located at 1232 Royal Palm Beach Blvd. in Royal Palm Beach. For more info., call (561) 249-2684 or visit or


Realtor Debbie Swinford Enjoys Helping The Community She Loves

Realtor Debbie Swinford Enjoys Helping The Community She Loves

A career in real estate can be both financially and personally rewarding. For Debbie Swinford of Bowen Realty, her profession provides a way to perform a task that is very personal: improving the lives of those around her.

Swinford, who grew up in West Palm Beach and attended Forest Hill High School, is married with three daughters and three grandchildren.

“As my children got married and the grandchildren started coming, I needed something where I could be available to them, as well as provide income,” she said. “Many friends were Realtors; one of my daughters, as well. So, I went to real estate school, and I have found it very rewarding. Real estate has provided me a way to spend time with my grandchildren and family.”

Swinford has always been interested in helping people. “I’ve done many medical mission trips to Ethiopia, Africa and Haiti,” she said.

Her current job allows her to assist others much closer to home.

“I make myself available seven days a week — after church, of course — to my clients in need of direction and answers,” Swinford said. “I am grateful to have the opportunity to be trusted and help out my fellow man. Nothing is more rewarding than to know you did the right thing and brought happiness to people.”

Swinford makes every effort to assist buyers and sellers who might be confused about the real estate market and are looking for someone who can help them find the perfect situation for themselves and their family. Her connection to her company is strong.

“I will say this industry can be difficult, but when I found Bowen Realty, all that went away,” she said. “We are a locally owned firm that is heavily involved in the community it serves.”

Sometimes, that involvement focuses on a community of one. Swinford is part of a group who have come to the aid of a Lake Worth woman whose home is not in the best of shape.

“She has many issues with her house,” Swinford said. “But it’s paid for, and she is alone and wants to stay there, so we decided to just start helping her.”

Swinford arranged for a company to go out to the woman’s residence and patch her roof — pro bono, she’s proud to say — because raccoons were found running around up there.

“We have a long way to go because the large holes in her roof inside the home need to be totally dry walled,” she said. “We can get her in a better living situation, and as a Realtor, I know how much a person’s home means to them.”

Swinford works diligently for her clients. She looks for the best deals and is confident in her ability to get any deal done in a professional and efficient manner. With all that said, she’s guided by the personal principles that ground her life every day.

“In today’s age, we must help and be honest with one another,” Swinford said. “Setting our own agendas aside for someone else, we can choose honesty or deception. I choose honesty.”

To contact Debbie Swinford of Bowen Realty, call (561) 370-4197.