Job Creator: Michael Zaharios III of Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center

ORGANIZATION: Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center (FVEC)
TITLE: Director
BA, Business Admin. and Organizational Communication, UCF, 2009
AA, Political and Economic, Daytona State College, 2007

You might say Michael Zaharios comes by his entrepreneurial spirit naturally. His father and grandfather started their own automotive repair business in New York, then moved the shop and family down to Daytona Beach 35 years ago. As a kid around the shop, Michael found the cash ow of the business more interesting than the cars. So as a student at UCF, he jumped at the chance to intern at the Florida Virtual Entrepreneur Center (FLVEC). Michael wanted to be a part of their mission – to promote and connect Florida entrepreneurs to each other and to supportive resources throughout the business community. And FLVEC was looking for someone with Michael’s passion for entrepreneurship, marketing and technology.

His work for the FLVEC may have started 10 years ago, but the way Michael sees it, they’ve only just begun. FLVEC is the only website providing Florida entrepreneurs – regardless of business size or industry – with the information they need to start, expand or relocate their company. Michael leverages his expertise in technology to drive traffic and visibility to business support agencies, and thanks to excellent search optimization, FLVEC is well-positioned as a resource for the thousands of online searches run for Florida business information each day. He believes this work is helping to elevate Florida’s status as an entrepreneurship state, as well as driving connections between these business owners who can gain inspiration, knowledge, and opportunities for collaboration.

Michael knows that success is driven by strong partnerships, nding inspiration for his own work ethic in his wife Robyn and daughter Penelope. And he is excited to see how FLVEC can continue to support and strengthen partnerships between entrepreneurs and their business communities in the decades to come.◆