Have you ever seen a fashion show at Macy’s, read an advertisement for Vanity Fair lingerie in The New Yorker, or dried yourself on a Martex Towel? If so, you might know Plymouth Harbor resident Jane Smiley, who was featured in our June Insights Program. Jane has lived an exciting and active life – working in fashion advertising in New York City, serving as an advocate for women in the workplace, and promoting education and scholarships for youth. Jane shared with us how she broke the barrier for women in top executive positions during the 1950s, and how her journey eventually led her here to Plymouth Harbor.

You can view Jane’s full Insights presentation here:

Insights is a monthly connection where residents can share stories and insights about their lives, careers, and hobbies with Plymouth Harbor employees.  A feature of Plymouth Harbor’s developing employee wellness program, OnBoard, Insights is offered at noon on the fourth Friday of each month.  Open to all employees, lunch is provided, supported by gifts to the Plymouth Harbor Foundation employee assistance fund. Thanks to resident Phil Starr, each Insights presentation is videotaped for viewing by employees unable to attend the live event.

Upcoming Insights Presentations:

July 24                           Senator Marlow Cook:  “Politics are Politics”

August 28                     Ted and Fran Rehl:  “Inspired by Music”

September 25             Walt Mattson:  “Community College & the Newspaper Business”

October 23                         Susan Mauntel:  “Taking Risks and Winning”

By Isabel Pedersen

When you first meet Lorna Hard, do not be deceived. This gentle, soft-spoken woman is the winner of a bitter bureaucratic war. As the Board Chairman of the Council on Aging of Southeastern Vermont, she became convinced that the clients would be better served by an independent 501 (c)(3) agency.

Founded under Lyndon Johnson’s Older Americans Act of 1965, the council in Wardsboro, Vermont, had always been under the supervision of Vermont’s Windham Regional Planning Commission. Her local group was funded by the government, by state and local grants and some private fundraising. The Windham “umbrella” group put up stiff resistance to the breakup. Before the years-long fight was settled, Lorna was threatened with a personal liability suit and hate mail. It was “very horrible” but, as she said, “the good guys won.”

Lorna, a graduate of Smith College, spent an early and life-altering year wandering around the world. After tasting life, and sometimes working, in far-flung places, she settled in for 22 years at the United Nations as an International Civil Servant. Most of her career was in Conference Services, helping with planning and day to day meeting servicing.

Cleveland, Ohio was home for her earliest years, then Basking Ridge, New Jersey. But she soon fell in love with New York City and never looked back.

In 1982, she married Fred Hard, whose career was in finance. When Fred went to Bermuda in 1986, she retired, keeping an apartment in New York as she would for about 20 more years. Upon Fred’s retirement in 1989, they moved to Wardsboro, where they stayed until coming to Pelican Cove and then to Glenridge for four and a half years. Sadly, she lost Fred just two months before moving to Plymouth Harbor, a change they had been anticipating eagerly.

During their 20 years in Vermont, they traveled widely and were especially fond of our Southwest, as evidenced by the big collection of Indian fetishes in her apartment. Whether you want to talk about the Zunis, horrible bureaucracies you have known, or exchange travel stories with one more inveterate traveler, you will enjoy meeting Lorna.

Jay Price, Member at Large Trustee

Jay was born in Southport, Connecticut and raised in Manchester and Stowe, Vermont. After finishing high school in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, he moved to Wichita, Kansas to serve six years in the 8th Air Force Strategic Air Command. After his Air Force service and education at Wichita State University, he joined Boeing Military Co. Aerospace Group, and worked on National defense projects. In 1984 Jay moved to Sarasota, FL and spent 12 years traveling and managing worldwide, special access international defense projects for Fairchild Weston and its successors, Loral Aerospace – Lockheed Martin. He then served as Director, Corporate Accounts for an international telecommunications firm. His board service includes chair of the St. Thomas More Finance Committee. He and his wife, Leslie Juron, co-chaired the Girls Incorporated of Sarasota County Capital Campaign and were both awarded the Girls Inc. Visionary Award.

Jay Price is a First Vice President – Investments and Financial Advisor with the Juron Price Wealth Management Group of Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC. Jay and Leslie have two rescued English Springer Spaniels and have lived in The Sanderling Club on Siesta Key for 19 years.

By Al Balaban

When her mother, 101 years old, passed away last September, Fran Nikolich decided it was time to move from the home she and her late husband, Paul, had bought in Palmer Ranch 21 years ago. They had grown up and spent most of their adult lives in Detroit, MI, Paul as a commercial printer, Fran, as cosmetologist.

When they agreed, after both retiring, to buy a place in Florida, Fran called mother to inform her of their plans. Her mother’s reply: “Buy another one for me.” Although she had been invited to live with them, “she wanted her own thermostat” and continued an independent life until her final days.

Although growing up with a powerful, intimidating, old-fashioned Italian father who tried to pressure her into an arranged marriage in Italy with a son of his friend, Fran found her own voice, refused, and eventually gained her father’s respect.

Although they had met when she was a teenager, Paul, a cousin’s friend, reconnected with Fran after his service in the U.S. Navy. They had a close, loving relationship which produced Georgeann (living in Tampa), Michael (now in Panama) and six grandchildren.

An early fascination with hair-styling led Fran, after graduating from high school at 16, to cosmetology school, licensing, and eventually ownership of two successful hair salons. Thirty years later, she and her husband retired to Florida in 1994. After 45 years of happy marriage, Paul passed away. Wanting to be active and involved, Fran worked as a hostess at the elegant Michael’s on East for the last ten years.

Fran has been a painter in various media for some time, as evidenced by the beautiful work that hangs on the walls of her bright, sunny apartment. This is a passion she wants to pursue and is already taking the necessary steps. She will be a welcome addition to our talented artists.

By Barbara Leverone

wellnes12Only within the past few decades have scientists begun to embrace the concept of neuroplasticity, the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. Prior to this, it was believed that after childhood, adult brain anatomy was fixed, only changing in the direction of decline.

Dr. Michael Merzenich, considered to be one of the world’s leading researchers in the field today, has repeatedly validated, along with many others, that the adult brain, in response to experience, is indeed plastic and capable of change.

Dr. Norman Doidge, psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, and research faculty member at both Columbia University and the University of Toronto, went wellnes1on to explore this hypothesis. He documented Merzenich’s experiments along with many other leading-edge scientists in his 2007 best-selling book, The Brain That Changes Itself. In Dr. Doidge’s most recent book, The Brain’s Way of Healing, he continues to explore the brain’s highly dynamic ability to heal when stimulated by noninvasive use of light, sound, vibration, and movement. Using everyday language, he writes about successful treatment protocols for numerous conditions including Parkinson’s, stroke, multiple sclerosis, balance issues, and chronic pain.

He devotes a chapter of his book to Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais (1904-1984), a pioneer in the field of neuroplasticity. As early as 1949, Dr. Feldenkrais wrote that the brain could form new neural pathways to organize itself in response to demands of the environment. Dr. Feldenkrais even created a method that uses movement lessons as a stimulus to develop new options for thinking, feeling, sensing, and doing.

Learn to move with ease and efficiency, and also improve posture and flexibility through the gentle, exploratory movements of The Feldenkrais Method. Discover how mindful, novel movements can create new neural pathways, and experience firsthand the power of neuroplasticity.

To read a portion of Dr. Doidge’s chapter on Dr. Feldenkrais, click here.

PHOTO CREDIT: Elaine Litherland, Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Doidge, M.D., Norman. The Brain That Changes Itself. New York:
Penguin, 2007. Print
Doidge,M.D., Norman. The Brain’s Way of Healing. New York:
Penguin, 2015. Print.

Lee DeLieto, Sr., Board of Trustees

“I have a personal sensitivity for what the folks at Plymouth Harbor do. Because of that, I was compelled from an objective as well as subjective point of view to want to get involved. It’s an honor to be recognized as a member of The Plymouth Harbor Board, and I’m very proud and pleased to contribute to such an iconic organization.”

Lee DeLieto, Sr. joined the Commercial Group at Michael Saunders & Company more than 20 years ago and he and his partner, Lee Jr., have repeatedly received the “Top Commercial Real Estate Team” recognition. Lee is an active member of various professional organizations including member and Past President of The Commercial Investment Division (CID) of the Sarasota Association of Realtors, member of Sarasota Association of Realtors and the International Council of Shopping Centers.

Community involvement includes Founder and Board Member of Insignia Bank, and current Board Member and Past Chair of Boys and Girls Clubs of Sarasota County. Additionally, Lee is a Past President of the Downtown Sarasota Kiwanis Club, Past Board Chair of the Sarasota University Club, and Past President of the Sarasota Alumni Club of Phi Delta Theta. Lee received a Bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University and an MBA from the Sloan School of Management at the University of Rochester.

John M. Cranor, Board of Trustees

“My first experience with Plymouth Harbor was its ‘connection’ with New College. John Whitney McNeil was, along with his wife, the ‘adult presence’ for the Charter Class of New College. He was also the ‘creator’ of Plymouth Harbor. For nearly fifty years, Plymouth Harbor has been an icon in Sarasota. For most of that time, friends of New College have been residents there. Two local institutions, nurtured by a single, inspired individual, have shaped a half century of growth and history in Sarasota.”

John M. Cranor is the former President and CEO of the New College Foundation, and has over 30 years of management experience in the food service and retail industries. John is an active member of the Sarasota community and has held senior executive positions with several notable corporations, including Pepsi-Cola North America, Taco Bell Corporation, Wilson Sporting Goods, and Frito-Lay Company.

John holds degrees from a handful of prestigious institutions including a Bachelor of Arts Degree from New College of Florida, a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University Graduate School of Business and an honorary Doctorate from Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky. Currently, John serves as the non-executive Chair of the Board of Directors of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, Inc.