December 7, 2020. The Estero Council of Community Leaders (ECCL) is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr. Gary Bonvillian as Chairperson of its Community& Economic Development Council.

The Community & Economic Development Council, comprised of devoted volunteers, focuses on being well informed of potential community and economic development activity and making timely recommendations to ECCL leadership.

Dr. Gary Bonvillian was president at Thomas University in Georgia from 2006-2016. At Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU), he was the Associate Dean and Founding Director of the Center for Leadership and Innovation at FGCU. Dr. Bonvillian’s research, teaching, publishing, and consulting interests in leading organizations through transitions largely shaped his career as a change agent. He also led the development of international programs in three of his school assignments that resulted in record-breaking enrollments for domestic and foreign partner institutions.

From 2016 until 2020, he consulted for the Lotus Education Group as their Senior Director of International Programs and Research Division. He was recently named the Estero Chamber of Commerce Director of Economic Development. He is a combat U.S. Army Infantry veteran who served in Vietnam, 1969-1970 and is an active volunteer with Hearts and Homes for Veterans in Fort Myers.

Jim Gilmartin, president of the ECCL, said, “Gary will be a significant resource to the ECCL. His interactions and participation in the ECCL and the Estero Chamber of Commerce activities will benefit both organizations, the Village of Estero, and the greater Estero area. We are very pleased he chose to join ECCL leadership.