The Most Successful Power Couples in Miami

  • Edgardo and Ana Cristina Defortuna This husband and wife real estate team that has a high-end luxury real estate firm that has interests in Latin America, The United States, and Europe. They are one of the most experienced companies and both parts of this power couple are hands on with the growth of the company. Ana serves as the Executive Vice President of the company and is a key component in the companies endeavors across the world.
  • Craig Robins and Jackie Soffer
    Miami is one of the poshest cities in the United States. It is home to many successful businesses and business people. In some cases, there are couples that are considered power couples because each person has their own successful endeavors in the business world. For example, Jackie Soffer ( and Craig Robins. These two real estate giants were married last year after a rather interesting start. Now the two are happily married. Jackie Soffer  is the owner of Aventura Mall and co-CEO Turnberry Associates, a real estate development company. Craig Robins is a successful real estate developer in the Miami Design District.
  • Michael and Nicole Simkins
    Both Michael and Nicole Simkins are from influential families that owned businesses in the area. Michael is the head of Lion associates, a company that sees profits around one hundred million dollars annually. Part of the Lion associates conglomerate is Simkin Industries. Simkins Industries specialized in the creation of folding cartons.Charles Kaufman Enterprises is the business owned by Nicole’s family. Charles Kaufman Enterprises has provided the very best jewelry to the elite for decades. Nicole was a key part of the revitalization in the interest of colored diamonds stemming from the sale of Jennifer Lopez’s blue diamond ( Both parts of this power couple are philanthropists, and make considerable efforts to help charitable organizations across the nation.

PayPal, MasterCard Reach Deal for Store Payments

MasterCard Inc said on Tuesday it had expanded its deal with payment processor PayPal Holdings Inc, which would allow customers to use PayPal’s payment services in stores.

PayPal’s partnership follows a similar deal with MasterCard’s larger rival Visa Inc in July as the company looks to expand its payments network.

PayPal will allow users to select a credit or debit card as the default payment method and share data on transactions made through MasterCard’s tap-and-pay feature, which allows the shopper to wave a card or mobile phone over a reader to pay, the companies said in a statement.

As part of the deal, MasterCard will allow PayPal users to withdraw cash from their accounts using a debit card and also waive the digital wallet fee it currently charges PayPal.

The two companies have an existing partnership for co-branded consumer credit cards in the United States and Puerto Rico.

Read more here.


The Philanthropic Works of Best Buddies International

Best Buddies International is a prominent not-for-profit organization that was established at Georgetown University, a prestigious school in Washington, D.C. The organization was created by Anthony K. Shriver in 1989. The objective at Best Buddies International is to give individuals who have developmental and intellectual problems chances to work and meet others. It’s the planet’s biggest organization that focuses on making life better for people who live with developmental and intellectual conditions. People who have these conditions often have to experience serious financial, physical and social dilemmas. Millions of human beings all around the planet have developmental and intellectual difficulties.

Shriver isn’t only Best Buddies International’s founder. He’s also the 501 organization’s chairman. When he launched this organization, his aim was to encourage positive relationships in people who have developmental and intellectual conditions. Shriver is a Georgetown University alumnus. He’s also a Miami Beach, Florida resident. He’s married to Alina and is the father of five wonderful kids.

Programs for Best Buddies International exist all around the planet. The organization, true to its name, operates on a global basis. Best Buddies International has accredited programs in more than 50 nations all around the Earth. They’re in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Brazil, Russia, South Korea, Indonesia, Egypt, the United Kingdom, India, Spain, Kenya and beyond.

Best Buddies International has the assistance of many prominent and well-known supporters. Corporations that back Best Buddies International include Natixis Global Asset Management, the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, the Ferraro Law Firm, Santander Bank and MGM Resorts International. Foundations that back Best Buddies International include Telmex Foundation.

The organization even has some solid backing from well-known figures. People who back the efforts of this organization include Rick de la Croix, Martha de la Croix, Gerard Klingman, Jackie Soffer, Penney Klingman, George Zoley and Donna Zoley. Government groups that extend their backing to Best Buddies International include both the Illinois Department of Human Services and the Florida Department of Education.

People who are serious about making the future brighter and happier for individuals who have developmental and intellectual issues alike often offer their assistance to this famed organization. People can take part in regular events that assist in the advancement of the organization’s many causes. Examples are the Best Buddies Friendship Walk, the Best Buddies Leadership Conference and the Annual Best Buddies Dallas Gala. The Dallas gala has been going strong for eight full years now.

Women Leadership on the Rise in Commercial Real Estate

The work environment was for a long time skewed against women. Since the 1970s, women could only work in certain departments. Accounting and clerical work were left for them as men filled all the commercial brokerage positions.

Their journey has been long and arduous. There have been pioneers such as Jackie Soffer of Turnberry. Having cemented her role as a renowned entrepreneur in a real estate company. Jackie Soffer serves as a light at the end of the tunnel. Women have used her as an example of what is possible.

The trend has caught on. There are now more women in leadership than there were twenty years ago. Rebecca Maccardini, Joan Woodard, and Beverly Rachel have served at the helm of successful real estate companies.

It`s not that men are being pushed out. Note the contrary, this trend is drawn from a growing realization women bring a unique package. There are innate talents that create a female advantage. These qualities are women’s attention to detail, their perseverance, and exceptional presentation skills.

Women are less threatening to investors. Investors are wary of men who tell them how to spend their money. While men tend to tackle problems head on, women use their discernment. They are more likely to understand. During an interview, they pick up subtle details.

Jackie Soffer has a top management job at Turnberry Associates as co-CEO. She is in charge of the hospitality, retail, and office management. Her counterpart Rebecca Maccardini just stepped down as president the National Association of Industrial and Office Parks (NAIOP). Joan Woodard is the acting chair of the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM). Beverly Rachel is the first president at Commercial Investment Real Estate Institute (read more about women in real estate leadership positions).

A woman’s place in society is no longer behind the scenes. The forces of education, technology, globalization, and the Internet have changed aptitudes and attitudes. The office conversation has matured. Women are treated with utmost respect and are regarded at the same level as their male counterparts in the workplace.

The classroom is another reason women have risen to leadership positions so quickly. Mathematics and the sciences were reserved for the men. For long it was believed, there was no way women would choose maths over the arts. The changing situation in the classroom means women are surpassing men in these subjects.

CEO’s Who Donate To Charity


The David M. Leuschen Charity Foundation was established in 1998 and created to support and extend assistance to the Montana and Wyoming ranch neighborhoods, and is committed to afford for and support individuals who consider Wyoming and Montana their home.

Since the inception of this noble foundation financial contributions have been advantageous to the local fire departments, churches, schools, youth organizations, nature conservancies, museums and television station KVSM in Bozeman Montana, and also provides financial aid to Dartmouth College which is David M. Leuschen’s Alma Mater.

The foundation commenced as a flowing channel to aid Wyoming and Montana high school students to have the advantage to attend Dartmouth College.

He is the creator and senior administrator of Riverstone Holdings in New York and the proprietor of Switchback Ranch which is abutting the boundaries of Montana, and Wyoming in the Northern Rockies.


Weiner CEO of LinkedIn contributed his $14million stock incentive to his employees as an incentive to elevate the team spirit following the company’s stock assets skyrocketing in February of this year. He requested the Compensation Committee to forfeit his yearly equity grant and alternatively deposit those shares back in the “equity bucket” for LinkedIn employees.


Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation was created in 2000 to pandemically embellish healthcare and curtail poverty, and in the United States to inflate favorable educational possibilities.

This is the largest charity non-profit organization on the planet, they propose grants solely to organizations that are tax exempt because, they want to be assured that their substantial contributions flow only into the deserving and beneficial causes.

The proportion of this foundation and their avenues to pursue and implement contributions makes it recognized as one of the forerunners in venture philanthropy.

The foundation is regulated and managed by three trustees, Bill and Melinda Gates who are rated as the second most benevolent philanthropists in the United States and Warren Buffett as the first.

Ana Dutra is CEO and Executive VP of Korn and Ferry Leadership and Talent Consulting. She stated that there is a network between appreciation and accomplishment, because when you get the sense of sincere gratification for your donations, the effective outcome of acknowledged is pulsating through your veins and the recipient becomes energized.

Recognition is thankfulness on a greater plane. Actually, it matters who they are and the part they play in the charity organization the jolt of gratitude on the face of the receiver and on those surrounding him or her have a profound effect that is remarkable and incomparable.

Become a Successful Businessman in No Time

You, Too, Can Succeed in Business!

What most people don’t realize is the people they idolize in business or any other career they pursue, are not really that far away from them. With some practice dedication and discipline, anyone is capable of molding their lives into the career of their dreams.

David Leuschen is the founder and CEO of Riverstone Holdings a private equity firm focused on leveraging investments in the gas and power sectors. Being no stranger to success, David enlightens us on some insight into achieving a successful career.

“Living on the Edge”

I think Aerosmith was alluding to some useful wisdom through these precise words in their hit single “Livin’ on the Edge”. David believes too many people these days play it too safe between the lines of risk. Part of being successful is taking the plunge in to risky situations with enough faith that you know someone or something will be there to catch you when needed. This is exemplified in successful companies through their unwavering ability to invest into innovative strategies that keep them above their competitors. It’s also a great way to get the heart beating again.

“90% of life is just showing up”

Success is the day in day out continued push towards what it is you want. Just by showing a little consistency in something, eventually things will start to work out. David believes that in order to achieve true success, its best to stick to one industry. When he first started Riverstone, he believed he had made the mistake of his life but he stuck with it and eventually opportunity came a knocking on his door.

“Build ups, not buy outs”

It’s much easier to adapt to the flow of life by slowly building. You’re able to ebb and flow in the details that eventually justify the form your company takes. When buying out other companies, it requires a much more macro perspective which David fails to find the understanding of. With a micro perspective in building things you are able to allow for strategy changes as you build an understanding for the business.

“Don’t try to beat the monkey”

In this case, the monkey is the market. Riverstone believes in playing smart which translates into a comprehensive hedging strategy for commodity risks in the majority of its deals.

“Skin in the game”

It’s important to have a motto of going down with the ship if you are the captain. In other words, Riverstone has over $900 million of their own money in their own investments. Because of that, much of their effort is in getting their money back in the first 24 months of any investment. This strongly aligns the GP’s with the LP’s or the firm with the investors.

China Announces Tax Breaks And Subsidies To Boost Employment, Agriculture As Growth Slows

China Announces Tax Breaks And Subsidies To Boost Employment, Agriculture As Growth Slows

SHANGHAI — The Chinese government on Friday announced tax breaks and other measures aimed at creating jobs and promoting entrepreneurship, as the country seeks to boost economic growth, which slowed to 7 percent in the first quarter of 2015, its slowest rate in six years.

A circular published by China’s cabinet, the State Council, on Friday — the country’s Labor Day holiday — acknowledged that China faced “pressure in creating more jobs.” It said the nation needed to implement “more pro-active employment policies,” according to the official Xinhua news agency. The circular said the government should encourage “mass entrepreneurship and startups, so as to foster a new engine of economic growth.” Separately, the Communist Party’s ruling Politburo also called on Friday for increased public spending and further tax cuts, though it did not go into detail.

Competition for International Travel is on the Rise

Competition for International Travel is on the Rise

The U.S. has begun implementing several measures to enhance the international traveler’s arrival experience at American airports. The goal is to attract some 100 million international visitors and billions of dollars each year to the United States by 2021.

International visitors have led the recent tourism records set across South Florida, accounting for nearly three-quarters of all tourism dollars that are spent in the region. To make their arrival easier and more pleasant, the White House has asked for more automated passport control kiosks at busy international airports, elimination of paper customs forms, new technology for passport and customs information to be entered on mobile devices, and more.

Over the last five years, the number of annual international visitors to the U.S. has increased by 19 million – many of those arriving at South Florida’s major airports. As a result, the White

House’s list includes Miami International Airport, one of the nation’s busiest international gateways, and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, which has seen a big increase in international flights.

With an eye toward upscale international guests, CEO & Chairman of Turnberry Jeffrey Soffer has guided major enhancements at both Fontainebleau and Turnberry Isle aimed at enriching guest experiences so both properties remain in-demand resorts. As a result, Fontainebleau Miami

Beach and Turnberry Isle Miami are attractive destinations for many discerning international travelers.

In a joint letter, Department of Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and Department of

Homeland Security Secretary Jeb Johnson said other countries will be competing fiercely for tourists and: “First impressions matter. When overseas travelers arrive at our airports, it is important that they have a positive experience” (read more).

Following strong bookings for Turnberry Associates’ Fontainebleau Miami Beach and Turnberry

Isle Miami during Art Basel and the Miami Beach Wine and Food Festival, an influx of international tourists can be expected to boost occupancy even further.

IBM to Employers: You Need a ‘Millennial Mindset’

IBM to Employers: You Need a ‘Millennial Mindset’

NEW YORK — Millennials. Depending on whom you ask, this now-ubiquitous generational term might evoke disdain, optimism and in the case of some business leaders, absolute panic. The presence of Generation Y continues to grow in the workforce — they’ll make up 50 percent by 2020 — and employers are putting a top priority on optimizing their culture for younger employees.

But what if companies are approaching millennials all wrong? What if staying relevant isn’t so much about catering to millennials themselves, but instead creating a “millennial mindset” that will help catapult a business into the future? According to a new IBM study, that’s exactly what employers need to do — and the first step is to stop believing in widely held, but incorrect stereotypes about millennials.

Organization Spotlight: The Virginia Bar Association

Organization Spotlight: The Virginia Bar Association

The Virginia Bar Association was created in 1888 by attorneys across Virginia in hope of creating a statewide bar organization. The intent of the organization was to set a precedent for lawyers across Virginia in terms of bar admission, examination and work ethic among the legal realm. Virginia, which is conveniently located next to the nation’s capital, is one of only three states in the country to have voluntary (VBA) and mandatory (VSB) bar groups in state.

The Virginia Bar Association has esteemed members of the law community in Virginia serving as members and volunteers for the organization. For example, Doug Nabhan  is a member of the Virginia Bar Association where he serves under the Labor and Employment Sections. Virginia Business magazine has named Nabhan as one of the “Legal Elite” of Virginia and a “Super Lawyer” by Virginia Super Lawyers magazine.