Bill Pollock, Chairman Emeritus
Bill is a retired salesman of Employee Benefits for Oswald, Trippe & Co. He has coached youth basketball and baseball teams in Fort Myers. He is a member of Rotary International, a Paul Harris Fellow, and a member of Fort Myers Rotary South. He was instrumental in developing Rotary South’s Lee County Scholar Athlete Award Program and was Chairman the first two years, 1987 and 1988.
Bill grew up in Webster Groves, MO, and was a two-year varsity basketball and three-year varsity baseball letterman at Webster Groves High School (Class of 1958). He was inducted into the Webster Groves High School Sports Hall of Fame in January, 2017.
Bill graduated from DePauw University in 1962, with a B.A. degree in Economics. He and his wife, Jackie, have a son, John Pollock, a daughter, Pam Davis, two grandsons, Coley and Chris Davis, and two granddaughters, Paige and Mallory Pollock.
He became involved with the basketball tournament in 1985. In 1991, he formed the non-profit, Classic Basketball, Inc. to create a structure by which the tournament would have a sound financial future. In the ensuing years, Bill, Donnie Wilkie and a Board of Directors have made the City of Palms Classic what it is today!
Donnie Wilkie, Vice President
Donnie is responsible for the naming of the City of Palms Classic and its national concept – evaluating, recruiting and select- ing the tournament’s participants each year since 1985. He is a proud member of the Boys’ National Selection Committee for the McDonald’s All-American Game. He spent 16 years as a sportswriter and page designer for the Fort Myers News-Press, is currently a free-lance sportswriter for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and compiles, writes and designs this souvenir program. Donnie founded the Charlotte Suns travel basketball program and, for nearly a decade, ran USSSA tournaments that attracted nearly 200 teams each spring. He has one son, Michael, who played for Charlotte High School in the 2005 and 2006 City of Palms Classics.
John Naylor, Executive Director
Forty-five years of experience in all aspects of the resort industry led John to seek the challenges of managing the Culligan City of Palms Classic. A graduate of Northwestern University, John moved to Fort Myers in 1991, where he managed the Pink Shell Beach Resort & Marina and the Sandpiper Gulf Resort on Fort Myers Beach. John currently has a hospitality management consulting business. A Certified Hotel Administrator since 1982,
John serves on the Board of Directors of the Lee County Chapter of the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association, and is on the advisory board for FGCU’s Resort Hospitality Management program. In 2013, John was honored as an official member of the “Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel Junonia Club” by the Visitor and Convention Bureau for commitment and dedication to the county’s tourism industry. He was a founding member of the Lee County Sports Organizing Committee in 1992. He and his wife, Mary Gail, live in south Lee County.
Brennan Whitley is the Senior Manager of Florida Business Operations for the Boston Red Sox. The Ft. Myers native has been with the Red Sox since 2011 when he started as a Spring Training intern. He currently oversees community relations for SW Florida, the annual Internship program, and Event Operations Parking staff and the Customer Service for the team at JetBlue Park. Whitley played an integral role in the Red Sox move from City of Palms Park to JetBlue Park in 2012. He is also one of the founders of the Swings for the Sox golf tournament, which proceeds go to support the Red Sox Foundation’s Lee County Scholars program. He currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Lee County. He is a graduate of University of Tampa where he majored in Sport Management. Brennan currently resides in Ft. Myers with his wife Danielle.
Fred retired from General Motors Acceptance Corporation (Ally Financial) in 2008. He serves as an Elder of the Gulf Coast Church of Christ. He is Vice Chairman of Lifeline Family Center, Inc. and Vice Chairman of The School District of Lee County Independent Sales Surtax Oversight Committee. He is treasurer of the Kappa Alpha Psi Educational Foundation for the Fort Myers Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
Fred received his B.A. degree in Business Administration from Savannah State University in1973. He and his wife, Joanne, moved to the Fort Myers area in 1986. He coordinates the City of Palms Classic's liaisons, who provide assistance and hospitality to visiting tournament teams. They have three children (Keren, Frederick, Jr., and Joseph) and five grandchildren (Chelsea, Gianna, Ryder, Olivia & Frederick III).
Brad Shipley, Treasurer
Brad is a native of Fort Myers, graduating from Bishop Verot High School in 1999 and the University of Richmond in 2003. He is a Certified Public Accountant and President & partner with Wiltshire, Whitley, Richardson & English, P.A.
Brad and his wife Melissa have two daughters, Madison & Peyton.
Pete – a long-time fan of the City of Palms Classic before he joined the board – is a local attorney and past President of Rotary Club of Fort Myers South. and Governor of District 6960. Pete and his wife Cyndi raised their five children in Fort Myers. He is a graduate of Georgetown University (pre-Patrick Ewing) and Florida State College of Law.
Joe North, Esquire
Joe North was born and raised in Fort Myers, and he has been practicing law in Fort Myers for more than 30 years. Joe is a 1987 graduate of The Citadel, which is a military college in Charleston, South Carolina, and he is a 1990 graduate of the Florida State University College of Law. Joe handles all types of accident and injury cases, including Motor Vehicle Collision cases and Negligent Security cases. Joe is very proud that the athletic stadium at the Dunbar High School has been renamed, “North Law Firm Stadium.” He and his wife, Benita, enjoy spending time with their family: Two children (Joseph Jr. and Kem); and, two grandchildren (Kenneth and Gabriel).
Dwight Sedgwick, Director Emeritus
Originally with Lee Memorial Hospital, Dwight started Taylor Rental in Cape Coral in 1981. Since selling the business in 1992, he was a volunteer for several years at Bishop Verot High School in its Development Department, and worked with Classic Basketball, Inc., in 1993 to help develop the gymnasium complex that housed the City of Palms Classic from 1994 to 2015. He has been active in the North Fort Myers Rotary for more than 44 years. He was raised in Miami and graduated from Georgia Tech. He and his wife, Roberta (Missy), have been married for over 49 years and they have two daughters (Joyce and Alison) who graduated from Bishop Verot High School.
Trevor Whitley, Secretary
Trevor is a partner and financial advisor with Marquis Wealth Management Group in Fort Myers. He holds a B.B.A with dual majors in Finance and Family Business from Stetson University’s School of Business Administration in DeLand, FL. The Fort Myers native is active in the community, and currently serves on both the Finance Committee and the Endowment Fund Board of the Episcopal Diocese of Southwest Florida. Trevor also serves on the Board of Directors and is past President of the Planned Giving Council of Lee County. Trevor and his wife Erika have one son, Gabriel.
Skip retired from the United States Postal Service, where he served as a letter carrier for more than 27 years. He is also a licensed real estate salesperson and runs Skis Enterprises. He has served in various positions with the Bishop Verot High School Athletic Boosters, including as Vice President. Skip is also involved in several political campaigns and in many community activities. Skip has been involved with Classic Basketball, Inc., for over 30 years. He and his wife, Iris, have two married sons, Malcolm (Bishop Verot- Class of ’99) and Kyle (Bishop Verot-Class of 2001), as well as two granddaughters.
Jennifer has more than 17 years of experience helping a broad array of clients navigate the markets and pursue their goals. Her mission is to understand what is most important to her clients and create a personalized strategy tailored to their vast and unique needs. Clients often come to her during times of transition, such as retirement or receiving an inheritance. She enjoys collaborating with her clients’ other advisors, such as accountants and attorneys, during the process of developing comprehensive wealth management plans, which includes estate planning and wealth transfer strategies.
Prior to joining Stifel, she began her career as a financial advisor and eventually became a regional leader with Edward Jones in Fort Myers, Florida. She also has previous management experience working at Publix and enjoys serving current and previous Publix employees.
Jennifer attained the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) certification and the Accredited Asset Management Specialist™ (AAMS®) designation. She earned a B.A. in Mathematics from Florida Southern College and holds Series 7 and 66 Securities licenses.
Jennifer has been married to her husband, Mark, for 24 years. They have three children, Garrett, Grace, and Mia
Justin received his law degree from the University of Florida Law School and bachelors degree from the University of West Florida. He has been practicing in Southwest Florida since 2007. Justin currently practices with the Pavese law firm He devotes his legal practice to litigating civil matters within his firm’s Commercial Litigation Group, including business litigation, real estate litigation and construction litigation.
John M. Pollock, CIC, President
John Pollock is very committed to serving his community and industry where he has held several leadership positions. Locally, John serves on the board of directors for the United Way of Lee County, the Advisory Council for Florida Gulf Coast University's Lutgert College of Business, and is a member of the Florida Council of 100.
Merry Coffman is the Director of Marketing Communications for Pure Florida, an on-the-water attraction in downtown Naples. Merry has been with Pure Florida since 2014 and prior was with the Edison & Ford Winter Estates as their Marketing Manager and Education Director. Her passion for the community started as soon as she moved to Fort Myers from Michigan in 2005. Merry has volunteered for many different groups ranging from local Chambers to educational groups. Currently, Merry is a Board Member of Visit Florida, the River District Alliance (RDA) of Downtown Fort Myers and Co-Chair of Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. Merry has been awarded with a Gulf Coast Business 40 under 40 award, Angel of the Arts from the Alliance of the Arts, E-Award honorable mention for Attractions Hospitality and the West Region Robotics Volunteer Award. Her family is her heart. Merry has a 14-year old son Jackson and 10 year old daughter Ava along with her husband of over 20 years, Drew, who teaches science at Tortuga Preserve Elementary School.