It was a crazy year, from hurricanes to Haynie’s mayoral blues. Here’s what we took away as the best, the issues that defined us and our insider picks for don’t-miss people and places.
By Marie Speed, John Thomason and a select committee of people who do, indeed, know it all
SALARY WORTH EVERY PENNY
Controversial football coach Lane Kiffin receives a 10-year contract and a base salary of $950,000 from FAU. In his first season as head football coach, the Owls score the best season in the school’s history, 11-3, win their first bowl game since 2008, and tie or break 45 individual school records.
NIGHT ALTERNATIVE TO NETFLIX
Game night at the Mizner Park Amphitheater this summer (June 22 and July 20) will feature grown-up games with LED ping-pong, mini golf, life-sized lawn games and food trucks, with a DJ spinning tunes from the ‘80s.
BOCA HIGH UPS ITS GAME
Brandon Walker, formerly with Cooper City High, is hired as the new football coach at Boca High. Walker played college football at Elmhurst College as an offensive lineman. After graduating, he had coaching stints at Delaware, Fordham and North Florida Christian before returning to South Florida in 2006. Walker takes over for Eric Davis, who stepped down in January after four seasons with the school.
WORKOUT THE REALLY COOL PEOPLE DO
Circuit training at Gravity + Oxygen with a personal trainer.
UP-AND-COMING POWER COUPLE THAT DOES NOT WANT TO BE A POWER COUPLE
Mike and Amy Kazma are always behind the scenes because they like it that way, but the spotlight eventually finds everyone—especially those who deserve a community shout-out. The Kazmas have lived in Boca Raton since 1996 with their two children; Mike is CEO of Amzak Capital Management. They have been involved with the Junior League of Boca Raton, the Boca Raton Historical Society, the Florence Fuller Child Development Centers, Boca Raton Regional Hospital, the George Snow Scholarship Fund and Boca Helping Hands, among others. The family also runs the Kazma Family Foundation Board of Directors, a nonprofit organization that provides scholarships and supports education initiatives and other charitable activities. The Kazmas donate money and time to Boca Raton, and we’d name them our prom king and queen this year, if the city had a prom.
NONPROFIT THAT IS KILLING IT
The George Snow Scholarship Fund gives $1.2 million in scholarships in 2017 to 147 kids who are now college-bound—its best year ever.
NEW STATUS SYMBOLS
- Gucci sneakers
- A Moke fun “car”
- Rescue dogs
- Nike and Jimmy Choo Off-White brands; in fact, anything by the avant-garde Off-White brand founded by Virgil Abloh is BIG
- Vacations to Iceland and/or Antarctica
- Personal trainers
- Sacred geometry tattoos
- A total alt-diet: dairy alternatives, meat substitutes, gluten-free wheat
- Resort CEO John Tolbert raises $194,000 for the George Snow Scholarship Fund in Boca’s Ballroom Battle and a month later is helping deliver hurricane supplies to Puerto Rico.
- Entrepreneur and philanthropist Bobby Campbell logs in his 16th year of hosting a vintner dinner for Boca Bacchanal.
- Longtime Boca volunteer and celebrated foodie Joyce DeVita is named Woman Volunteer of the Year by the Junior League of Boca Raton.
- Lynn University’s Barbara Cambia, active in several organizations, is named this year’s Diamond Award winner by the Boca Chamber.
See who else made the Best of Boca 2018 list:
Best of Boca: Food & Drink
Best of Boca: Retail & Business
Best of Boca: People & Lifestyle
Best of Boca: Issues & News
Best of Boca: Arts & Entertainment