It was glossy and sleek; I automatically assumed it was a national product. But as I looked closer, I noticed it was a local magazine. I was astonished by its quality, and, man, did I think it was cool.
“It” was Ocala Style. I knew at that very moment that I had to be a part of it.
I picked up the magazine, found the name of the marketing director and sent him an email letting him know of my qualifications and my desire to work for the magazine. I received an email back, got an interview, met the publisher Kathy Johnson and was offered a job.
Not long after working there and learning my way, I began to discuss with Kathy the need for a magazine of such quality in Lake and Sumter counties. I explained it would be the first of its kind and this community would love it and most certainly support it. It didn’t take much convincing, since Kathy is a talented visionary and amazing entrepreneur.
We planned a September 2004 launch of Lake and Sumter Style, but we had a major setback.
The delay wasn’t caused by lack of advertising sales; there was no shortage of community support. It was Mother Nature. Lake County was hit by three consecutive major hurricanes, which caused extreme damage to our community. It took months to get things running again, but we pressed forward and made our debut in November.
I cannot explain the sense of pride and the excitement I felt for this magazine and for my community the first time I held Style in my hands. It was a life-changing moment for me.
Time went on, and Style continued to be a success. I had the extreme privilege of becoming owner and publisher of Style when my husband, Doug, and I purchased the magazine from Kathy in 2010.
I have loved Style magazine since the day it was born and today I am still extremely proud of what it represents. Thank you, Kathy Johnson, for believing in me and thank you to our readers and advertisers for your continued support.
Here’s to another decade of Style.