The goal of Women’s History Month is to recognize the impact that women have locally, nationally and internationally. ULI Southwest Florida showcased some outstanding women leaders this month. Michelle is one of those leaders.
If I could do it all over again, I would have been an urban planner. Having served as an elected official in a capacity of making land development decisions I have come to love all that goes into it… zoning and rezoning, growth management and comprehensive plans, formulating policies, reading and deciphering codes and ordinances, details of PUDs and PDs, and everything else involved in land development.
Because of the amazing experience I had on the Naples City Council, I am now running for Collier County Commissioner, District 4 to take my land development experience to a county level.
What woman inspires you and why?
Women who inspire me are women who take big, bold steps in initiating big ideas like Kristen Coury. After moving to Naples from New York City in 2004, Kristen started Gulfshore Playhouse which is a huge success in our community. Part 2 of her dream is bringing a state-of-the-art Theatre and Education Center to Naples which is well on its way of coming to fruition.
What advice (professional or personal) would you give to your younger self?
The advice I would have given my younger self would have been to:
- Get involved in Toastmaster early on and stay involved in it.
- Don’t be afraid to sit at the head of the table in the dining room, boardroom, or any other room.
- Acknowledge that your learning style is different than others and embrace it.
- Don’t be so hard on yourself. You don’t have to be perfect. Think of yourself as a work in progress.
What lead you to your career in real estate development/land use?
I started volunteering and serving on community and government advisory boards which led me to run for the Naples City Council where I had the honor and privilege of making significant land development decisions for the City of Naples.