Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Associates Elects New Chair and Appoints Two Board Members

Organization Sets Sights on Future for Nathan Benderson Park
SARASOTA, Fla. - June 4, 2019 - PRLog -- Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Associates (SANCA), a not-for-profit 501(c)3 business created to manage Nathan Benderson Park (NBP), is proud to announce the election of Ronald A. Shapo as Chair of the Board of Directors. In addition, the Board has selected two new Directors, Randy Mallitz and Michael S. Taaffe.

Shapo began his career as an accountant, spent two decades primarily as a trial attorney handling complex business issues, and then served as an attorney for numerous companies in transactions and projects totaling billions of dollars, with emphasis on real estate, public /private partnerships and corporate/ finance. He retired from the international law firm of Holland and Knight, LLP in 2017 and currently serves as a mediator and arbitrator. In addition to his role as Chair of SANCA, Shapo is a community member of the Sarasota Memorial Hospital Board Finance Committee and the President of Professional Business Consultants, assisting businesses in financial and operational issues, and risk analysis.

"Nathan Benderson Park should be celebrated as a community jewel! It is an exceptional economic and tourism generator, it has placed Sarasota on the national and international sports scene, and it is an iconic park serving the public – one that has also delivered $142 million in economic benefits for the county, representing a 600% economic return on the investment," Shapo said. "In five short years, we are off to a great start. As Chair, my goal is to help SANCA look to the future, seize opportunities and build upon the strong foundation we have created to date."

Speaking of the new Directors, Shapo said: "The addition of Michael and Randy is a tremendous plus for the Board and the community. Each has been extremely successful in his vocation and has generously given his time and effort to many civic and charitable causes. Each will now bring his devotion, commitment and skills to benefit SANCA, the park and the community."

A partner with Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP, Michael S. Taaffe is a preeminent trial attorney and director of Shumaker's Broker-Dealer and Data Breach Groups. He has been a member of numerous local charitable boards and has a lifelong involvement with rowing, including service as a founding member and coach of Sarasota Crew, which he led to several regional, state and national championships. Each of his four children has rowed for college crews, including at Trinity, Princeton, Stanford and Harvard.

Co-founder and principal of the Mallitz Investment Group, Randy Mallitz served as president and CEO of divisions of Aearo Technologies for 16 years in the U.S. and Asia, during which he built the company's sales to $600 million. Prior to that, he was CEO of Kardon Industries for 16 years. Mallitz has a strong record of leadership founded on principles of effective planning. He has been active in various charities in the Sarasota community, including the Board of Jewish Family and Children Services and Board Chair of Aviva. Preceding his election to the SANCA Board, he served on the Board of the Nathan Benderson Community Park Foundation.


Suncoast Aquatic Nature Center Associates Inc. (SANCA) is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 business created to manage Nathan Benderson Park, a 600-acre public park which also serves as a venue for major regional, national and international events, such as the World Rowing Championships, NCAA Championships and the Olympic Pentathlon Trials. In its first five years of operation, the organization has achieved $142 million in economic impact for the county, hosted 14 major national and international events. In 2018, alone, 600,00 visitors and patrons came to the park, including 475,00 local users. Programs include Circus Sarasota, the July 3rd Fireworks, Movie Nights, Triathlons, classes, safety instruction, camps, team building and many more. The mission of SANCA is to improve the quality of life for our community and be an economic generator for our region. For more information, visit

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