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North Pinellas business digest for March 16

Students at Westlake Christian School take compulsory instrumental music in fourth and fifth grades; it’s an elective in middle school.

Westlake Christian School

Students at Westlake Christian School take compulsory instrumental music in fourth and fifth grades; it’s an elective in middle school.

The Sales and Marketing Council of the Tampa Bay Builders Association earned a Silver Award as one of the nation's top councils and was the only one in Florida to be so honored.

According to council president Heather Jaxheimer-Mills with Ryland Homes, the Tampa Bay Sales and Marketing Council was one of five finalists in a field of 800 entries in the national awards competition at the recent International Builders Show in Las Vegas.

TBBA's council received the award based on excellence in membership efforts, programs, seminars, education, council marketing and awards programs, including the Parade of Homes.

With a membership of more than 200 sales and marketing professionals from the Tampa Bay area, the council promotes better and more efficient sales practices through networking, speakers and a variety of educational programs for sales professionals so consumers can enjoy a more positive and informed home-buying experience.

The TBBA is headquartered in Brandon and serves Tampa Bay-area construction-related businesses in Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties. It promotes professionalism and continuing education within the tri-county building and development industry and encourages industry participation in the community at large.

For more information, visit tbba.net.

• • •

Officials from Nationwide Title Clearing Inc., a Palm Harbor-based research and document-processing provider for the mortgage and financial industry, recently attended a legislative breakfast meeting Jan. 31 at the Palm Harbor Library hosted by the Greater Palm Harbor Chamber of Commerce.

According to NTC CEO John Hillman, understanding the legislative and regulatory agendas being pursued by elected representatives allows NTC to tailor its support of community events to align with the programs that benefit NTC's employees.

NTC, a land records research company, has been involved in many community outreach activities, including food and blood drives, Toys for Tots, the annual Harbor Art Festival and the American Cancer Society's Relay For Life of Palm Harbor.

• • •

Westlake Christian School, named a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence by the U.S. Department of Education in 2012, has earned accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Westlake already holds accreditation from the Florida Council of Independent Schools.

Accreditation is a voluntary method of quality assurance developed more than a century ago by American universities and secondary schools, designed to distinguish schools adhering to a set of educational standards.

SACS is one of the six regional accreditation organizations recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and is a division of AdvancEd, the world's largest education community, serving more than 30,000 public and private schools across the United States and more than 70 countries.

With this distinction, Westlake joins a handful of schools in the Tampa Bay area to have earned both the FCIS and SACS/AdvancEd.

"The recognition and affirmation of our program represents another hallmark moment in Westlake's history as a school and is confirmation of our high standards and commitment to quality education," said Jayanne K. Roggenbaum, Westlake's head of school.

Westlake Christian School, a ministry of Palm Harbor United Methodist Church, is located at 1551 Belcher Road, Palm Harbor.

Mail business news to Tampa Bay Times, 1130 Cleveland St., Suite 100-A, Clearwater, FL 33755; fax to (727) 445-4119; or email nbeall@tampabay.com.

North Pinellas business digest for March 16 03/14/14 [Last modified: Friday, March 14, 2014 3:17pm]
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    Nation

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's ban on travelers from six majority-Muslim countries is set to be replaced as soon as this weekend with more targeted restrictions on visits to the United States that would vary by country, the New York Times reports, citing officials familiar with the plans.

    President Donald Trump's ban on travelers from six majority-Muslim countries is set to be replaced as soon as this weekend with more targeted restrictions on visits to the United States that would vary by country, officials familiar with the plans said Friday. The new restrictions, aimed at preventing security threats from entering the United States, could go into effect Sunday after the conclusion of a 90-day policy review undertaken as part of the administration's original travel ban. Though the restrictions would differ for each country, people living in the targeted nations could be prevented from traveling to the United States or could face increased scrutiny as they seek to obtain a visa. [Associated Press]
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    The University of Florida football program is valued at  $682 million, making it the most valuable by far in the Sunshine State. Pictured are UF cheerleaders leading the crowd in a Gator cheer on Clearwater Beach last December during the Outback Bowl Beach Day on Clearwater Beach. [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
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    Various decor and memorabilia fill the walls and shelves at New World Brewery in Ybor City.
Long time music venue and hangout New World Brewery in Ybor City will be closing it's doors and moving locations. Patrons enjoy one of the last events before New World Brewery changes its location to Busch Blvd in Tampa.  [Photo Luis Santana | Times]
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    Food & Dining

    Floridians would like their bowls of pasta to never, ever end.

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[Times]