The Bottom Line
Sunday, May 24, 2015

Gem society honors local jeweler

After 56 years in the business, local jeweler and gem specialist Manuel J. Marcial de Gomar, founder of Marcial de Gomar’s Emeralds International, will share his life experiences and expertise on emeralds, conch pearls and the emeralds of the Atocha shipwreck, Wednesday at the Gemological Institute of America in Carlsbad, California. 

 Marcial de Gomar’s career started on horseback in the 1950s in South America; specifically in the dangerous mountains of Colombia. He said a highlight of his career was the recent certification of the world’s largest and first known double-sided star emerald specimen weighing more than 25 carats. The Gemological Institute of America named the gem the “Marcial de Gomar Star.” 

Historical society seats new board members

The Key West Art and Historical Society recently announced the addition of Todd Feit, Sam Kaufman, Adam Russell and Michael Shields to its board of directors.

Executive director Michael Gieda praised the new members’ insights and their backgrounds in arts advocacy and business that will help cultivate the society’s future.

Russell is a sculptor and proprietor of Key West Pottery with his wife, Kelly Lever. Feit is a former KWAHS volunteer who uses his social media expertise to promote the society. Kaufman is an attorney and community advocate. Shields founded the Key West Film Society, as well as the former executive director of the Tropic Cinema and a community activist, arts entrepreneur and producer. 

Those interested in supporting the society’s preservation of three museums, year-round exhibitions and educational programming through volunteering or membership can call Gerri Sidoti at 305-295-6616, ext. 106.

Sloppy Joe’s honors Passafiume

Sloppy Joe’s recently presented the Jean Klausing Award to Employee of the Month Kali Passafiume, a bartender who was recognized for her outstanding performance and dedication to her work.

First State honors Menendez

First State Bank of the Florida Keys recently congratulated Lori Menendez, assistant vice president and marketing manager, for 15 years with the bank.

Menendez joined the bank as an operations specialist in 2000. She was promoted to electronic banking/data support supervisor in 2002 and continued to progress in positions such as operations support manager and deposit operations officer. 

In 2007, Menendez was promoted to assistant vice president and then to assistant vice president/controller in 2009, before assuming her current position in 2013.

Menendez earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Florida. She has served as captain of First State Bank’s Lower Keys Relay for Life team and lives in Key West with her family.