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Florida Chamber chooses Kitson & Partners CEO Syd Kitson as regional chair

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On Wednesday, the Florida Chamber of Commerce named developer Sydney Kitson as Southwest Florida Regional Board chair.

Kitson, who is CEO of private real estate development firm Kitson & Partners, will serve a one-year term as one of 12 individuals in the Regional Chair Program.

“As an active business leader in the Southwest Florida region, I am excited to serve as the Florida Chamber’s Regional Board chair,” Kitson said, “and have the opportunity to get fellow business leaders involved in the mission of securing Florida’s future.”

Kitson was appointed by Chamber Chair Steve Knopik, President and CEO of Bealls, Inc., to work with the region’s business and legislative leaders to promote a competitive business environment.

“Syd Kitson has a long history of being a team player and has proven leadership skills, which is vital when keeping Florida competitive,” Chamber CEO Mark Wilson said. “Syd will volunteer his time and talent in support of the Florida Chamber’s fight for free enterprise.”

Kitson made national news in 2006 when his firm purchased Babcock, a 91,000-acre cattle ranch taking up 142 square miles of Charlotte and Lee counties. He then sold 73,000 acres of the parcel to the state, making it the largest land preservation deal to date, to the pleasure of many environmentalists.

The Florida Chamber of Commerce, founded in 1916, is considered the voice of business and is the state’s largest federation of employers, chambers of commerce and business associations.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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