PO Box 458Brunswick, GA 31521
501(c)(3) - EIN 84-3251316 - © 2021 FORWARD BRUNSWICK
Acknowledging that “service is the rent we pay for being” is what brought Michele Jackson Seals back home. A third-generation Brunswick native, Michele has committed her time and talent to support and encourage the children and families of Brunswick and Glynn County. As an educator with more than 20 years of experience, she understands the important connection between a viable and supportive environment and a viable community. As an active member of the local service community, she also appreciates the vibrant potential Brunswick has.
Seeing Brunswick continue to flourish is important to Michele as she and her husband are raising their daughter to love and contribute to the city they continue to call home. She hopes to be an integral part of encouraging current and future residents to advocate and participate in the total development of Brunswick.
Lance Sabbe has been a resident of Historic Downtown Brunswick since 2008 after relocating from Southern Arizona. He and his wife are passionate about Brunswick and the wonderful community that exists here in the Golden Isles. Over the last several years he has had the opportunity to invest energy and time into multiple boards and activities including: Historic Brunswick Foundation, Former Chairman of SPLOST Oversight Committee, Glynn Avenue Design Guidelines Committee, ESPLOST PAC, Historic Brunswick Neighborhood Planning Assembly, Former Chairman of NewCity Brunswick, BATS Oversight Committee, and current Chairman of Brunswick Planning & Appeals Commission. We have a great community, but with the help of Forward Brunswick, we can build partnerships to improve the quality of life for everyone in our community.
Lance currently is a Partner at h2o creative group a downtown Marketing & Design Agency.
Shrimp and grits changed her life! Erin’s first visit to Brunswick was in 2018 where she stayed while attending the Shrimp & Grits Festival on Jekyll Island. She and her husband immediately fell in love with The Golden Isles, and they relocated from Smyrna, GA to Glynn County in 2020. Brunswick, in particular, drew her family to The Golden Isles because of it’s undeniable charm, rich history, and opportunity for economic vitality.
Erin brings 15+ years of corporate experience to the nonprofit realm. Her Finance, Internal Audit, and Product Manager experience groomed Erin for Forward Brunswick’s Executive Director role where she applies her valuable organizational, leadership, and cross-functional skillset. Working on a balanced team with User Experience in her former Product Manager role taught Erin the importance of listening to her clients and understanding their environment, routine, and wants and needs. She recognizes the value of teamwork and demonstrates the power of partnership.
Brad Piazza is the founder and CEO of Port City Partners, a Real Estate Development firm which seeks to develop sustainable properties that inspire, revitalize and fit within the fabric of the Historic Downtown Brunswick community. Brad’s involvement with Forward Brunswick seeks to channel his deep expertise in commercial real estate development and marry it with his guiding passion for meaningful community development. Brad has been a leading voice in the revitalization, smart growth and success of Brunswick’s development. Port City Partners’ recent contributions include the renovation of the historic Leotis building and addition of “Port City Lofts”, an affordable-luxury waterfront project offering boutique residential living and commercial spaces in the heart of the city; “Port City Park”, the Golden Isles’ newest outdoor event venue, and “The Bijou,” a newly renovated commercial building in the historic Bijou Theater building. Through thoughtful projects and his active contribution to initiatives such as Forward Brunswick, Brad aims to increase quality of life for residents and visitors of the Golden Isles and to bring more people downtown to live, work and play.
Ed Farley has always used his sales, manufacturing and marketing skills to help nonprofits and community ventures. His private sector career and experience, spanning several years, has provided the perfect balance to help further Forward Brunswick goals.
Ed moved to Glynn County in 2014 after 12 years in Forest Products with a national company in Atlanta. Prior to Atlanta, Ed worked in Executive Marketing and Sales roles throughout the United States, and he continues to share his Marketing and Sales experience through consulting opportunities.
Ed started his venture in The Golden Isles as a member of the Citizens Revenue Committee of Glynn County. Shortly after, Ed joined BATS (Brunswick Area Transportation Study – Citizens Advisory Committee). He also proudly serves as a Board Member of the Boys and Girls Club of Southeast Georgia. This local experience has given insight into the potential for Brunswick and other Glynn County municipalities. His commissions on committees provided the impetus to join Forward Brunswick and become an integral part serving as a Board Member and leader of the Communications team.
Ed has always believed in giving back to the community and feels this responsibility is important for success. His communication and management skills have provided a foundation for Forward Brunswick as it grows into a strong and viable organization. His energy to advocate for Forward Brunswick and the City of Brunswick to provide economic vitality is unmatched.
Forward Brunswick’s mission aligns with the focus of Don’s 15 years as a community volunteer and his passion for historic preservation. After engaging in The Coastal Community Foundation’s 2019 process to revitalize downtown Brunswick, Don Myers saw the importance of additional housing to further improve the overall economic vitality in Brunswick.
Don is in his fourth term on the board of the College of Coastal Georgia Foundation, having chaired the ad hoc Center for the Arts advisory committee for six years. He has been recognized for service by United Way of Coastal Georgia, the St. Simons Rotary, Glynn Visual Arts, and St. Simons Land Trust. His engagements in Brunswick through fundraising strategy development have included Safe Harbor’s campaign for the Windolf Residence on Norwich St., the new building for St. Francis Xavier Catholic School on Newcastle St. He works to have his professional and volunteer fundraising experiences support Forward Brunswick’s fulfilment of its vision.
Don and his wife Susan have resided in The Golden Isles since 2006.
William Bernard McCloud is a Glynn County native and Brunswick High graduate. He loves his home town and wants to see improvement to the city of Brunswick. Bernard is an active community member and is committed to improving quality-of-life for Brunswick residents, visitors, and stakeholders. In addition to Forward Brunswick, Bernard’s passion for our community is apparent through his experience as a board member for Communities of Coastal Georgia Foundation, Altama School Council, and The Boys and Girls Club of Southeast Georgia.
Bernard currently works for Sea Island Company and wife, Shelia, owns Victory’s Cleaning Service Inc. They have two adult sons and faithfully serve as members of Greater Works Ministries where he serves as a deacon. Bernard looks forward to contributing to the growth of Brunswick and enhancements to Glynn County.
Collaboration is key, something Al McKinnon, President & CEO of South Coast Bank, knows and appreciates well. With more than 36 years of banking experience, serving on the board of Forward Brunswick is an opportunity to collaborate with other business leaders to create a vibrant, diverse, and cultural environment in downtown Brunswick. South Coast Bank is headquartered in the heart of downtown Brunswick and is committed to nurturing the growth and success of the area. McKinnon hopes the project helps bring residential housing to an energetic downtown area where businesses can grow and thrive, fostering an atmosphere that continues to make the Golden Isles a tourism destination and a place people want to live. In addition to serving on the board of Forward Brunswick, McKinnon is also on the Glynn County Airport Commission and is a member of the Brunswick Rotary Club, McKinnon and his wife Pam are members of Wesley United Methodist Church and have three adult children.
Ben Slade has a profound belief in the value of voluntary group action to ameliorate community and societal challenges. This is what Forward Brunswick is all about. Improving neighborhoods, encouraging new housing across the economic spectrum. Improving our parks and connecting them with trails which will afford young people, in particular, the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors.
The famous management thinker of the 20th century, Peter Drucker, observed that voluntary group action is the hallmark of American society. It is collective action, not from the top, but from the level of society which is closest to the people. Forward Brunswick offers everyone the opportunity to make our community healthy and prosperous for all its citizens.