Seven candidates have volunteered to serve on the Old City South Neighborhood Association. Here are short bios on each of the candidates:
Gail Crocetta was born in upstate New York where
she and her husband Pat lived and raised their 2 children. Gail graduated from
the State University of New York at Albany and became a Rehabilitation
Counselor (CRC). She managed vocational programs serving individuals with
disabilities and other barriers to employment.
relatives in Palm Coast, Gail and Pat often visited St. Augustine and spent
several years looking for a neighborhood in the city that felt comfortable. In
December, 2009, shortly after retiring, Gail and Pat purchased their house at
289 St. George Street. It took a year of renovating to make it feel like home.
From all the activities of our historic city to the coziness of our
neighborhood, they feel St. Augustine is the perfect place to live.
traveler, Gail also enjoys kayaking, bicycling, and hiking, along with
attending spin, pump, and yoga classes. Most of all, she loves spending time
with friends and family. As an OCSNA board member, Gail is most interested in
helping to organize social gatherings, welcome new members, and promote the
bonds that make us a neighborhood.
Burry Gowen is a newcomer to the Old City
South neighborhood, having moved to his home at 5 Tremerton Street in 2011.
Prior to moving to St. Augustine, Burry and his wife Wendy lived in the Boston
area, where Burry taught middle school social studies in the Lexington Public
School system. While at Lexington, Burry
served as Diamond Middle School Social Studies Department Chair from 1998 to
2005 and was named Lexington Public Schools Secondary Teacher of the Year in
2004. Burry has a B. A. in Economics from
Marietta College and an Ed.M. from Harvard University. Wendy and Burry love
their adopted hometown, its historical neighborhoods, and the warmth and
welcoming nature of their neighbors. This year, Burry has served as President
and Treasurer of OCSNA and delegate to the St. Augustine Neighborhood Council.
Margrit Kuehn grew up in Belgium
where she received a degree in Hotel Management. She then spent 12 years
working in hotels and private clubs in food and beverage management in
Montreal, New York, Houston and Chicago. She quit work to raise her 3 children
in Wilmette, Illinois, a Chicago suburb, where she became involved in a
non-profit environmental awareness group for 10 years. She worked closely with
local schools, the village board, the park district and village library. When
she and husband Mark Brand became empty nesters and retirees, they moved to St
Augustine in December of 2015. In her leisure time Margrit enjoys playing
tennis, gardening and getting together with friends. This year, Margrit has served
as board member-at-large for OCSNA and a member of the St. Francis Park
Kathy Marquis is an Army brat who grew up all over the
world. She married a Navy pilot and got to see even more. As a result, she
developed a love of history. She and her husband, Rick, moved to the heart of downtown
St. Augustine in 2000. Kathy remains an active community member. She participates
in the Women’s Exchange, the Las Adelphas Garden Circle and the Island Girls
Book Club. She is a faculty member in the UNF OLLI program and in March 2016
was named a 2016 NWLI Woman of the Year for her work in the community. She
serves on the board of the Corazon Theater and enjoys playing trivia at the
Corazon on Wednesday nights. For Kathy
and Rick, living in the oldest city in the U.S. has been a perfect fit. This
year, Kathy has served as Board member-at-large for OCSNA, as Chair of the St.
Francis Park Committee, co-chair of the Social Committee and alternate delegate
to the St. Augustine Neighborhood Council
Jack Martin moved to St. Augustine in 2005. Along with his wife Mia,
they operated the Cedar House Inn Bed & Breakfast for five years,
becoming knowledgeable in city business processes and the tourism industry.
After selling the B&B in 2010, Jack and Mia wanted to remain downtown and
currently reside at 325 St. George Street.
Jack’s formal education includes both technical and business
management degrees. His experience in HOAs include President of a 110
home neighborhood association and Vice President of the Master HOA,
totaling 4500 homes in Pembroke Pines, FL. While operating the Cedar House Inn,
Jack filled various roles in the St Augustine Historic Inn Association,
representing 26 inns in St. Augustine. Jack also spent limited time serving the
Old City South Neighborhood Association (OCSNA) working to revitalize the
organization. This year, Jack has served as Vice President of OCSNA, board liaison
to the OCS History Committee and as a member of the St. Francis Park Committee.
Jim Kelly – After graduating as an ensign from
US Navy Officer Candidate School in 1957, Jim served aboard LST1163 for 3
years. On leaving the Navy in 1960, Jim spent 40 years self employed in the
marketing and sales of high technology products in a number of fields including
nuclear science, space science, space high performance optics, semiconductor
manufacturing and energy conservation to name a few. He owned and operated a
small R & D company that did contract research and development work in state
of the art manufacturing and products.
Upon retiring in 2005, Jim earned a Florida real estate license and
worked as a business broker for 3 years at Watson Commercial. Jim has served as
a volunteer advising on energy conservation for hospitals in Flagler Hospital’s
Engineering Dept. and has volunteered at the St. Augustine lighthouse Maritime
Archeology Dept. Jim has a B.S. in Economics from Lehigh University and a B.S.
in Physics from Columbia University. This
year Jim has served as Board member-at-large, OCS Historian and co-chair of the
OCSNA Social Committee.
Virginia Whetstone Maguire – Born and raised on St. George Street in St. Augustine, Virginia attended local schools, graduating from St. Augustine High School. She earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Administration and Economics from Vanderbilt University and following graduation, she assumed the role of President of Whetstone Chocolates, Inc., a family business started by her parents in 1967.
Virginia has been active locally in
both social service and professional organizations. As President of the Junior
Service League and Chairwoman of the Lighthouse Committee, she led the
exhaustive and successful effort to restore the St. Augustine Lighthouse Tower
and relight the Fresnel lens. She served
as Chairperson for the St. Johns County Visitors and Convention Bureau,
President of the St. Johns County Hotel/Motel Association, and was a member of
the Bank of St. Augustine Advisory Board. She served as a board member on the
Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, the St. Augustine Lighthouse Museum and the
American Red Cross. She is currently a member of the Las Adelfas Garden Circle
of the St. Augustine Garden Club.
Virginia’s hobbies include
gardening, tennis, travel, and jet skiing.
She also holds a First Degree Black Belt in Tang Soo Doo (karate).
She purchased her home in 1998 on St. George Street, completely remodeled the interior and now lives there with her husband, Bruce Maguire and her two dalmatians. This year, Virginia has served as Board member-at-large and member of the OCSNA Treasurer’s committee.
The election for a new OCSNA board for 2019 will be held as part of the General Neighborhood Meeting on Thursday, March 21 (6pm – 8pm) at the Corazon Cinema and Cafe, 36 Granada Street. Voting will be limited to members-in-good-standing of OCSNA on the day of the meeting. You do not have to be a member of OCSNA to attend the meeting, but if you would like to join OCSNA, we can sign you up at the meeting. Dues are $15 per household and we accept cash, checks and credit cards!