In honor of Women’s History Month, DBPR is proud to announce our 2022 Celebrating Women in Business Vlog Series. Each day from March 28-April 1, an episode featuring a one-on-one conversation between Secretary Melanie S. Griffin and one of five trailblazing women will be released.
Captain Carolyn Kurtz
Tampa Bay Harbor Pilot
Captain Carolyn Kurtz is a graduate of the United States Merchant Marine Academy and went to sea on U.S. flag vessels for several years, receiving her unlimited Masters license in 1993. Kurtz was the first woman in Florida to be accepted into the Tampa Bay Pilots Association (TBPA) training program in 1995. Over her 27 year career with the Tampa Ports, she has been a strong advocate for other women. Captain Kurtz sits on the board of First 10 Forward, a non-profit organization benefitting girls and women pursuing non-traditional careers, and serves as an active mentor with the Women Offshore Foundation. Since 2016, Captain Kurtz has served as the chair of DBPR’s Florida Board of Pilot Commissioners, which licenses and regulates the state’s harbor pilots.
Tanya I. Davis
Certified Public Accountant & Partner,
S. Davis & Associates, P.A.
Tanya I. Davis’ CPA career has given her the opportunity to work with a wide range of clients in a variety of industries, including hospitality, sports and entertainment, wholesale distribution, higher education, insurance, healthcare, government and not‐for‐profit. Davis got her start with the global accounting firms of PricewaterhouseCoopers and Grant Thornton, before joining S. Davis & Associates, P.A. (SDA) as an assurance partner in 1997.
Davis served on DBPR’s Florida Board of Accountancy for seven years and was the first African-American woman to do so. During her time with the Board, she chaired the probable cause panel and the minority scholarship committee, which runs the Board’s Clay Ford Scholarship Program. Davis has a firm commitment to community activism and regularly contributes to a variety of professional, educational, social and civic organizations, including counseling minority students interested in entering the accounting field or starting new businesses. She also works with new business owners in developing financial analyses, feasibility studies and business plans to help them succeed.
Patti E. Ketcham
Ketcham Realty Group, Inc.
Patti Ketcham is one of the premier names in Florida’s real estate industry. Her firm, the Ketcham Realty Group in Tallahassee, has been in business for over 20 years and is stronger than ever after having their best sales year in 2021. Prior to her successful real estate career, Ketcham worked in mortgage banking and became the first female president of the Tallahassee Mortgage Bankers Association. Ketcham is also an avid learner and became a licensed real estate instructor in Florida. She has written several courses for continuing education credit in Florida, Georgia and Alabama. Ketcham is a past president of the Tallahassee Board of Realtors and served as chair of DBPR’s Florida Real Estate Commission in 2020. During her tenure, Ketcham was instrumental in keeping the licensing and education options open for real estate associates at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Beachfront Life LLC
Aida Bao-Garciga has a wealth of experience in the fields of interior design and construction and has spent the majority of her 42-year career working for the Miami-Dade County government. Early in her career, Bao-Garciga was the lead project manager and designer for the moving of all county departments to the Stephen P. Clark Government Center upon construction in 1985. She was also the designer for the offices of the mayor, county manager and all the commissioners at Miami-Dade County. Bao-Garciga later served as the interior designer and chief of facilities for the Miami International Airport, which serves as the second busiest airport in the state of Florida. After her retirement from county government, Bao-Garciga formed her own construction and design company, Beachfront Life LLC, performing different projects from large residential to commercial.
Christy Salters Martin
Former Boxer & Boxing Promoter,
Christy Martin Promotions
Prior to her illustrious career as a boxing promoter, Christy Salters Martin was a trailblazer for women in contact sports. After winning a “Toughwoman” contest in college, Salters Martin became hooked on boxing. Her skills were noticed by world-renowned boxing promoter Don King, who signed her to a contract in 1993. She starred on some of the biggest pay-per-view boxing cards in the history of the sport headlined by Hall of Famers Mike Tyson, Julio Caesar Chavez, Felix Trinidad and Evander Holyfield. Salters Martin retired with an impressive 49 victories, two WBC World Championships and was named WBC Emeritus Champion.
Shortly before her career concluded, Salters Martin was the victim of a severe domestic violence attack in which she was left for dead by her then husband. During that time she turned much of her focus to speaking out against domestic violence and trying to help victims and survivors regain their life confidence. She founded Christy’s Champs a non-profit that assists the victims and survivors of domestic violence. Throughout that ordeal, Salters Martin remained committed to her connection in the sport of boxing and became a promoter. She has pledged to use her vast knowledge gained from her career to assist up-and-coming fighters to get to the championship level. Christy Martin Promotions has been a mainstay with DBPR’s Florida Athletic Commission for some time, and she has seen the growth of the industry skyrocket in the Sunshine State over the last three years.
For additional information please contact the DBPR Office of Communications at (850) 922-8981 or firstname.lastname@example.org.