In this issue . . .   
BOARD NEWS   New Chairman: John O'Rourke III begins term as Chairman
FOCUS ON FUNDS Foundation currently accepting grant applications
UPCOMING EVENTS Register for the 2016 Tour of Kitchens!
MERRICK SOCIETY  Become a member, make a difference in your community    
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John O'Rourke III begins term as Chairman
John O'Rourke of MONTICA JEWELRY joins Coral Gables Community Foundation Board of Directors

John O'Rourke III, President of Montica Jewelry, was sworn in as the 16 th Chairman of the Coral Gables Community Foundation at the 2016 Board Installation & Reception on January 20.

John has established one of the premier jewelry stores in South Florida with Montica Jewelry and is considered a diamond expert and a leader in the industry. Additionally, he is currently a Board Member as well as past Chairman of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce, has served in the capacity of Vice President for the Coral Gables Business Improvement District  and participated on numerous boards over the years including Economic Development, Make-A-Wish of South Florida, and CHARLEE Homes for Children. John has also served as Chair of the Foundation's Community Giving Committee. 

The Foundation is excited to work with John to further enhance our philanthropic footprint in the City Beautiful!

We are proud to announce our 2016 Executive Committee Appointments

John O'Rourke of MONTICA JEWELRY joins Coral Gables Community Foundation Board of Directors   Carlos F. Garcia Coral Gables Community Foundation chair  
John O'Rourke III | Chairman
Carlos F. Garcia | Immediate Past Chairman
Jack Lowell | Chair-Elect
Scott A. Poulin | Treasurer
Matthew Meehan | Secretary
David Olazabal | Chair, Community Giving Committee

Foundation holds annual Board Installation & Reception
The Coral Gables Community Foundation Board of Directors gathered at Tarpon Bend Raw Bar & Grill on January 20th for its annual Board Installation.

The 2016 Board of Directors and officers were sworn in by Coral Gables Mayor, Jim Cason. New Board members this year include Pedro Parra, President and CEO of Mercantil Commercebank Trust Company, and Brian Quintana, a senior tax accountant at Goldstein Schechter Koch and Chair of the Foundation's Ponce Society of Young Professionals. Certificates of Appreciation were presented to outgoing Board members Zeke Guilford, Andria Hanley and Marielena Villamil for their valuable contributions to the Foundation over the years. 

To view more photos from the event, please visit our Facebook page.

Pedro Parra joins Foundation Board of Directors

The Coral Gables Community Foundation welcomes Pedro Parra to its Board of Directors. Pedro serves as manager of  Mercantil Commercebank's personal banking and trust division, as well as President and CEO of Bank subsidiary Mercantil Commercebank Trust Company N.A. Parra joined the Bank in 2000.

Pedro is a member of the Board of Directors for Mercantil Commercebank Trust Company, N.A.; Mercantil Bank and Trust Limited (Cayman); and Mercantil Commercebank Investment Services, Inc.  

The Foundation is pleased to welcome Pedro to our Board of Directors!

Brian Quintana is new PSYP Chair, joins Board of Directors

The Coral Gables Community Foundation is happy to welcome Brian Quintana to the Board of Directors. Brian will serve as the 2016-2018 Chair of the Ponce Society of Young Professionals (PSYP), the young professionals' outreach program of the Foundation.

Brian is Senior Tax Accountant at Goldstein Schechter Koch (GSK). He started with the firm in 2012.  Actively involved with GSK and the community, he is a member of the the firm's Real Estate Practice Group, Restaurant Group, a Grant Advisory Board Member for GSK Cares, the firm's philanthropic fund, and a member of the GSK Recruiting committee. He also serves on the Columbus High School Alumni Executive Board. 

Brain joined the PSYP in 2014 and is looking forward to serving as Chair.
"I am excited to lead a group that is going to be involved and give back to the community in more ways than just financially, but by also volunteering our time and effort for the betterment  of the City of Coral Gables," Brian said.

Board member Sissy DeMaria featured as a "Gables Great"

Coral Gables Community Foundation Board member Sissy DeMaria was recently featured as a "Gables Great" in the Coral Gables News series.  Sissy's deep Coral Gables roots and passion for philanthropy are highlighted in the article.

Sissy is the Owner and President of Kreps DeMaria Public Relations & Marketing and founder of Give A Buck for Special Equestrians, a non-profit organization that funds therapeutic horseback riding and equine-assisted therapy programs.
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The Foundation remembers Claire-Frances Flanagan Whitehurst

Long-time Coral Gables Community Foundation friend and Merrick Society member Claire-Frances Flanagan Whitehurst passed away on Saturday, November 14, 2015. She was 81.

For years, Claire-Frances championed the Foundation and was a supporter of many local organizations and causes. Always one to lend her time, she dedicated her energy on many occasions to assist with events and support her community.

The Foundation is thankful for Claire-Frances' friendship and will remember her fondly.
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Funding available through the 2016 Community Giving Program

Chaired by David Olazabal, the Coral Gables Community Foundation's Community Giving Committee reviews grant applications on a bi-annual basis. This year's application deadlines are April 18 and September 19.

The Foundation's areas of interest include education, arts and culture, health services, historical preservation, and social services (for the elderly, youth and disabled). Grantees should be IRS recognized ยง501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.

Those wishing to apply can do so on our website. For any questions regarding the grant application process, please contact Mary Snow, Executive Director of the Foundation.
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Register for the Tour of Kitchens today!

Thank you to our 2016 Tour of Kitchens sponsors

Top Chef Sponsors
Gourmand Sponsor

Gourmet Sponsors
Foodie Sponsor

Media Partner

Take the Tour of Kitchens with Bike Walk 
Coral Gables
For those who wish to bike the Tour of Kitchens,  Bike Walk Coral Gables  is offering guests the opportunity to take the tour in a group bike ride. This is a great way to travel to each stop, enjoy the beautiful weather and even burn off some calories so you can enjoy the food provided by our participating restaurants guilt-free! Experienced bicycle tour leaders from Bike Walk Coral Gables will guide Tour participants on safe routes to the Tour stops. If you are interested in biking the Tour, please contact Deborah Swain at 305.496.2374  or by February 4, 2016.

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Create your legacy today! 

Each year, beautiful homes are featured on the Foundation's Tour of Kitchens event



Merrick's vision for better living continues today as involved Coral Gables stakeholders strive to maintain the look and feel of the City Beautiful. Do you have a vision for Coral Gables? The Coral Gables Community Foundation established the Merrick Society so that visionary people like you can continue George Merrick's dream. The Merrick Society promotes and preserves key philanthropic activities in Coral Gables and raises unrestricted funds for the Foundation. Merrick Society donors commit to a three-year annual contribution of  $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, $10,000, or more. Merrick Society donors are invited to the annual benefactor reception and other special events, and receive a lapel pin in recognition of their participation. To find out more, please contact our Executive Director, Mary Snow, at 305.446.9670, or via email at


305.446.9670 |  

Led by community leaders, the Coral Gables Community Foundation provides the philanthropic conduit to connect individuals and corporations looking to positively impact the success of the community. Celebrating 25 years, the Foundation has been at the forefront of the evolving needs of Coral Gables, while effectively bringing together beneficiaries and benefactors to fund programs with the greatest impact and benefit to "The City Beautiful."