2015 Good Neighbor Award Recipients


Roberto Baldor, RE/MAX Properties SW Inc.
Organization: Dr. Phillips YMCA

Roberto Baldor is a volunteer for the Dr. Phillips YMCA, where he serves on the organization’s board of directors and is a Leader’s Council Level major donor. Bobby also volunteers with the Dr. Phillips Little League as both a coach and board member, and supports both Palm Lake and Dr. Phillips elementary schools.

Bobby and his wife, Halle, together are sponsors of the Bridges of Light Foundation for Children, which helps impoverished and/or abused children in Orange County.

Charles Brenner, C Brenner Inc
Central Florida Veterans Memorial Park Foundation, Inc.

Charlie Brenner’s efforts as an eight-year board member of the Central Florida Veterans Memorial Park Foundation, Inc., have seen some dramatic results: the raising of $1.5 million and the construction of a memorial park at the new Veterans Administration Medical Center.

The memorial honors the more than 1,000 veterans from Orange, Lake, Brevard, Osceola, Seminole, and Volusia counties who never returned from service, and it serves as a place of healing and reflection for their friends and families.

James Batenchuk, Charles Rutenberg Realty
Organization: Shriners Hospitals for Children - Tampa

James Batenchuk has served for the past seven years as chairman of the Sam Swope Memorial Charity Ride, an annual motorcycle event that takes a full year to organize and benefits the Shriners Hospitals for Children - Tampa. Jim has pursued corporate sponsorships, private funding, and prize donations to the tune of $1.85 million during his tenure as chairman.

There’s no holiday break for Jim; he also spearheads a Christmastime toy drive for impoverished children through his local Shrine.

Donna Cox, Real Estate Firm of Orlando
Organization: Eastside Baptist Student Ministry

Donna Cox is a 20-year volunteer with the Eastside Baptist Student Ministry, for which she raises money to fund mission trip scholarships. The scholarships are provided to students in difficult situations who would not otherwise be able to experience the personal reward of serving others during a mission trip.

Donna and her husband coordinate an annual golf tournament, an affair that contributes to the $10,000 she has raised and the 1,500 hours that she spent on behalf of the ministry this year alone.

Cynthia Egeli, Keller Williams Winter Park
Organization: Orange County Volunteer Advocates for Children

Cynthia Egeli – through the Legal Aid Society of the Orange County Bar Association – serves the best interests of children who have been removed from their homes and placed into the foster care system.

As a trained “Volunteer Advocate for Children,” Cindy ensures that all needs of her assigned child are met, whether those needs are medical, psychological, educational, or otherwise. She also protects the child during any necessary investigation processes and even interviews prospective adoptive families.

Henry Lopez, Tuscawilla Realty, Inc
Organization: Green H.O.P.E.

Henry Lopez volunteers with Green H.O.P.E., an organization created and run by students wishing to help those with autism, cancer, or atlanto-occipital dislocation. Hank’s fundraising efforts enable Green H.O.P.E.’s student volunteers to participate in awareness walks and to help with retreats for families of children with cancer.

In addition to raising money and providing guidance to young volunteers, Hank also contributes a portion of each of his closings to the organization.

Gislene Moorman, Parker Realty Group
Organization: Women’s Residential & Counseling Center

Gislene Moorman is the co-founder of Space To Grow, a non-profit group dedicated to supporting women and children in need. This year, in honor of the group’s 10th anniversary, Gigi hosted a party at the Women’s Residential & Counseling Center and provided residents with 200 “Baskets of Love” filled with toiletries, laundry items, and $10 in quarters.

Gigi personally contributed more than $5,000 in cash and in-kind donations to the effort, and spent more than 250 hours on the project (in addition to recruiting another 200 volunteer hours from others).

Wendell Philp, La Rosa Realty, LLC
Organization: Housing 4 All

Wendell Philp is the founder and an ongoing volunteer for Housing 4 All, an organization that seeks to bridge the homeless into affordable housing with supportive services and an emphasis on homeownership and self-sufficiency.

His personal efforts range from providing educational sessions to women with children in temporary facilities, to forming alliances with other housing entities. Wendell also appeals to REALTORS®, landlords, property owners, and property managers to provide affordable housing to those with barriers such as a credit problem or criminal history.

Theodora Uniken Venema, Downtown Brokers LLC
Kids Beating Cancer

Theodora Uniken Venema volunteers with Kids Beating Cancer (an organization that provides resources and support for children with cancer, leukemia, and related life-threatening diseases) and serves as executive director of its advisory board.

Theodora is a fundraiser for the organization’s benefit events, and her own contributions have earned her a spot on its donor wall. This year she also raised funds for a CD that featured the voices of 30 children beating cancer as they sang the original song “My Own Hero.”

James Weinberg, Park Place Realty Associates
Base Camp Children’s Cancer Foundation, Inc.

James Weinberg is a 12-year volunteer with Base Camp Children’s Cancer Foundation, Inc., an organization that provides services to all the children in Central Florida facing cancer and other hematological illnesses.

As chairman of the group’s board of directors, Jim uses his fund-raising skills and community resources to support events such as the “Celebrity Waiter Luncheon” (the last one netted $32,000) and 5k runs, plus programs such as celebrations to mark the end of chemotherapy. Jim even arranged for free office space when the organization was getting started.