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St Pete X features business and civic leaders in St. Petersburg Florida who share their insight, expertise and love of our special city. An initiative of the St. Petersburg Group, St Pete X strives to connect and elevate the city by sharing the voices of its citizens, and to bring awareness to the opportunities offered by the great St. Petersburg renaissance.
 
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Joel Momberg is a people person, and it has served him well. Momberg spent 30 years with All Children’s Hospital, in a range of fundraising roles including Executive Vice President of the ACH Foundation, and 10 more as Chief Executive Officer for the University of South Florida Foundation, before retiring in 2019. “The key is," he explains, "if you…
 
Veteran technology executive Ron Tarro, now a leading investor in early-stage businesses, has a good handle on what it takes for a startup to become a success and generate big returns for investors. As vice president of New World Angels, Tarro keeps an eye out for companies with unique products and founders who can execute on their ideas and who th…
 
In 1985, longtime Tampa Bay Times journalist Lucy Morgan was awarded the Pulitzer Prize (with Jack Reed) for uncovering corruption in the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, the first woman to be so honored for investigative reporting (she was a Pulitzer finalist, for another story three years earlier). In this interview, she discusses her feelings on t…
 
On this episode of SPX, Joe visits with legendary photographer Herb Snitzer, a longtime resident of St. Petersburg. In a non-stop career than spanned more than 50 years, Snitzer - as a professional on assignment for Life and Look magazines, the New York Times and other publications - created dozens of now-iconic images of the great jazz musicians o…
 
On this episode of SPX, Joe is joined by Dr. Sandra Braham, CEO of Gulf Coast Jewish Family & Community Services. Dr. Braham discusses her extensive career in higher education, before moving into the non-profit world. They talk about her transition to Florida, and about her deeply-held spiritual belief that God had a plan for her. She explores bala…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe is joined by Bill Edwards, CEO of the Edwards Group and the Bill Edwards Foundation, and a well-known businessman and philanthropist. Edwards, who arrived in St. Petersburg in the early 1990s, discusses the run away success of his Mortgage Investors Corporation, his contributions to downtown including the renovations of …
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe is joined via Zoom by Jim Craig, founder of Gold Medal Strategies. Craig was the celebrated goalkeeper of the 1980 Olympic gold medal-winning hockey team, known as the Miracle team. Craig shares the story of his success in professional hockey, what it taught him about business and how he has shared those lessons with cli…
 
On this episode of SPx, unicorn entrepreneur Arnie Bellini joins the podcast to tell the story of ConnectWise. He shares how the managed IT services provider went from its founding in 1982 in his parents' house to the area's first company with a billion dollar valuation. Then, he shares his efforts to give back, starting with connecting the dots of…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe is joined in the studio by Fred Bullard, veteran developer and entrepreneur. Bullard, the man behind some of St. Pete's most iconic places, including Feather Sound/Carillon and BayWalk, shares his storied history of entrepreneurial endeavors, lessons learned over the years and what gives him meaning now.…
 
On this episode of SPx, former director of UNICEF (1995 to 2005) and the United States Peace Corps (1993 to 1995), Carol Bellamy joins Joe in the studio to preview her keynote at the Conference on World Affairs. Bellamy discusses the lessons learned from her rich professional history, which began in the private sector, moved to politics, and later …
 
On this episode of SPx, Shipwreck Hunter and Aresty speaker David Mearns joins Joe in the studio to talk about uncovering some of the world's most famous shipwrecks and finding the "unfindable." Mearns shares the painstaking process of locating a shipwreck, the all-or-nothing stakes and the controversies attached to these discoveries. He shares the…
 
On this episode of SPx, Tony DiBenedetto joins our host Joe Hamilton in the studio. In this insightful episode, DiBenedetto walks listeners through the unlikely founding of Tribridge and the $300,000 check that brought it to fruition. He explains the tenets of Tribridge's culture, and the many acquisitions, pivots and evolutions before its eventual…
 
On this episode of SPx, Blake Wilson, a.k.a. BatDad joins our host Joe Hamilton in the studio. BatDad, a viral internet sensation who became famous through the now-extinct platform Vine, has 8.1 million followers on Facebook and 722,000 subscribers on YouTube. Through the last six years as BatDad, Wilson has taken the internet by storm and monetize…
 
Former Tampa Bay Times Political Editor and Senior Vice President of Mercury, Adam Smith joins our host Joe Hamilton in the studio for a conversation on politics, media and the news business. Smith explains why regional newspapers are so important to the vitality of our republic and why he fears they may be on the way out. Joe and Adam cover everyt…
 
On this episode of SPx, author Gilbert King joins Joe in the studio to share new insights from his book, Beneath A Ruthless Sun, and its connections to his Pulitzer Prize-winning second book, The Devil In The Grove. King shares the true story of the brutal man involved in both cases, Sheriff Willis McCall, and how King dug up long-forgotten/buried …
 
On this episode of SPx, our host Joe Hamilton is joined in studio by the unparalleled Iqbal Paroo. There are few people in this world with a life story as inspiring as Paroo's. From his childhood in colonial Kenya to his time in the Kenyan air force, to the traumatic injury that changed the course of his life, Paroo has packed three lifetimes into …
 
On this episode of SPx, our host Joe Hamilton is joined in studio by local glass legend, Duncan McClellan. Nearly a decade ago, McClellan famously moved into what is now known as the Warehouse Arts District, creating the first live, work, and show gallery in St. Petersburg. At the time, people called McClellan crazy. Now, he has had a leading role …
 
On this episode of SPx, we throw back to February with Tampa's 58th mayor, Bob Buckhorn. Our host, Joe Hamilton, sat down with Buckhorn as he contemplated the end of his mayorship, the power of the office and life after. In this rare and insightful conversation with a leader at the pinnacle of his career, Buckhorn waxes on journalism, authenticity …
 
On this episode of SPx, Marcin Kleczynski, founder of Malwarebytes, breaks down the origin story of the company he started at just 15 years old, living with his parents in the suburbs of Chicago. Kleczynski shares how pirated video games led him founding a company with more than 800 employees and four offices across the world. Kleczynski talks misc…
 
On the kickoff episode of Season 2 of the St. Pete X podcast, Dr. Kiran Patel joins host Joe Hamilton in the studio to share his insights about entrepreneurship, philanthropy and wealth as a by-product of personal meaning. Patel, a cardiologist turned businessman whose estimated wealth nears $250 million, has called Tampa Bay home for decades. He s…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe sits down with Bob Glaser, president and CEO of Tampa Bay real estate titan, Smith & Associates. They compare St. Pete's Warehouse Arts District with Miami's Wynwood and talk possibilities of the Tropicana Field site. Glaser shares his expertise on hot topics like downtown development, housing, and what St. Pete needs to…
 
On this episode of SPx, renowned author and lover of cities, Peter Kageyama joins Joe in the studio for an emotional conversation about love and personal evolution, and how those have manifested in Kageyama's latest book. They share appreciation for one of St. Pete's best known co-creators, talk districts and how cities can address gentrification. …
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe welcomes Steve Tingiris, serial entrepreneur and founder of Dabble Lab, to the studio. After many iterations, Tingiris has found the perfect niche for his business, functioning as fractional R&D teams that build tech products and tools for other companies. Dabble Lab's most recent focus has been artificial intelligence a…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe welcomes Jennifer Hall, executive coach and licensed psychologist. The woman behind Mindset Coaching, Hall has more than 20 years of experience in executive coaching and has co-developed two assessment tools - the Entrepreneurial Mindset Index and the Coaching Mindset Index. She talks the evolution of her coaching busine…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe welcomes Marc Blumenthal, founder of Synapse and partner at Florida Funders. In this acumen-packed episode, Blumenthal shares his thoughts on the Tampa Bay startup community and the tipping point that brought him to found Synapse. He reflects on the inaugural Synapse Innovation Summit in March 2018, and how "scaling sere…
 
On this episode of SPx, Lakshmi Shenoy joins Joe Hamilton to talk building Tampa Bay's very own "central landing zone" for tech entrepreneurs, Embarc Collective. A veteran of Chicago's 1871, Shenoy shares her thoughts on the burgeoning entrepreneurial scene in Tampa Bay, and lessons learned thus far as CEO at the helm of a startup supporting startu…
 
On this episode of SPx, we say goodbye to co-host Ashley Ryneska. Ashley has been a staple since the show's inception, but she's moving on to greener (and colder) pastures in New York. For her last episode, she and Joe host her former colleague, President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater St. Petersburg, David Jezek. As head of one of the most impactf…
 
On this episode of SPx, Rick Homans, president and CEO of the Tampa Bay Partnership joins Joe and Ashley in the studio to talk regionalism. Despite Tampa Bay's standing as the 19th largest metropolitan area in the country, fractured advancement efforts have hurt the region's development and hindered collective productivity and wage growth. The Tamp…
 
On this episode of SPx, David Downing sits down with Joe and Ashley to talk the nuances of tourism marketing and what the $1 billion industry means for Pinellas County. Downing explains his deep ties to St. Petersburg and why he returned to the area after starting his career in New York City. He shares the lesser known aspects of VSPC, including it…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe and Ashley host AgileThought CEO, David Romine. Since founding AgileThought in 2004, Romine and his partners have grown the business exponentially. Headquartered in Tampa, the company has expanded to Orlando, and most recently to Atlanta, Georgia. Romine talks endings and new beginnings in founding AgileThought out of th…
 
On this episode of SPx, Peter Schorsch, the politico behind Florida Politics, joins Joe in the studio to talk St. Pete media. Schorsch is a complex and controversial figure in local and national politics. This episode goes deep - we see a surprisingly soft side of Schorsch, as he shares the challenges of building StPetersBlog (which later became Fl…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe flies solo with St. Pete's very own Peter Betzer, President of the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership, and Dean Emeritus of the University of South Florida College of Marine Science. When Betzer arrived in St. Petersburg in 1971, the College of Marine Science had five faculty and a dozen graduate students and the city w…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe and Ashley are joined in the studio by Michael Pastreich. At the time of the recording, Pastreich was in his final days as the President and CEO of the Florida Orchestra. He has since stepped down from his position after 12 years of breathing life into the organization. In this acumen-rich episode, Pastreich shares stori…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe and Ashley are joined by Kristen Shepherd, Executive Director of the Museum of Fine Arts St. Petersburg. The youngest and the first female director of the museum, Shepherd is breathing life into the halls of St Pete's only comprehensive art collection. Equipped with more than two decades of experience working with Sotheb…
 
On this episode of SPx, Ashley and Joe are joined by Dr. Hank Hine, Executive Director of the Dali Museum. Since Dr. Hine's tenure began in 2002, he has overseen the museum's move to its magnificent home at the anchor of Beach Drive and its many special exhibits highlighting Dali's connection and influence on the art community. Dr. Hine talks his r…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe and Ashley are joined in the studio by Dr. Jonathan Ellen of John's Hopkins All Children's Hospital. Dr. Ellen spent much of his extensive career as a social epidemiologist studying HIV/AIDS. In 2012, he was appointed President of All Children's Hospital. Over the next five years his visionary leadership, along with the …
 
On this episode of SPx, Ashley and Joe welcome Joanna Sikes to the studio. Sikes is the Executive Director of the Imagine Museum, which opened in St. Pete in January 2018. Sikes boasts a long career in art curation and deep involvement in the American Studio Glass movement. The Imagine Museum is her fourth museum endeavor. Sikes spent 30 years work…
 
On this episode of #SPx, Joe and Ashley sit down with professional musician, entrepreneur and founder of the Arts Conservatory for Teens, Alex Harris. Harris has been running the highly successful ACT program for four years, the program has grown to serve nine locations and 800 students this year alone. The program boasts a 100 percent graduation r…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe & Ashley welcome a lifetime agent of systemic change, Randall Russell. Russell is the President & CEO of the Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg. In its third year, the Foundation is seeking to create a holistic picture of where Pinellas County is today - to catalyze collaboration with nonprofits, government entities…
 
On this episode of SPx, Ashley welcomes Kelly McBride of Poynter Institute and Kyle Parks of B2 Communications to the show. Get a look at which media outlets this highly connected couple consume the most, and how everyday media consumers can be better fact-checkers. Kelly and Kyle have brought together their respective organizations through shared …
 
On this episode of SPx, Amy Rettig joins hosts Joe Hamilton and Ashley Ryneska in the studio to debunk the many myths surrounding Nielsen and their evolving work in measurement and data analytics (and subsequent advertising) since the company's founding in 1923. This year, Nielsen celebrates doing business in Florida for 50 years. Nielsen lives and…
 
On this episode of SPx, we throw back to last May, when Joe sat down with Mike Harting to talk through St. Pete's past, it's evolving present, and what's coming for the future. Touching on topics ranging from arts and culture, to business and development - from Central avenue's spotty history, to its smashing independent business scene - this conve…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe & Ashley sit down with Station House owner, Tampa Bay Investor, and curator of St. Pete's cool vibes - Steve Gianfilippo. His company, Gianco, is poised to open two new locations of his beloved St. Pete co-working and community space in the next year. The Station House Arcade, soon to open on the 600 Block of Central Ave…
 
On this episode of SPx, hosts Joe & Ashley sit down with iQor CEO Hartmut Liebel to get to the bottom of iQor's unique business model. They discuss how St. Petersburg won out over cities like Chicago, Charlotte and many others for iQor's global headquarters, and what the company is looking for from a talent perspective. Liebel shares his passion pr…
 
On this episode of SPx, Joe and Ashley attempt to pitch an HGTV show with Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas CEO, Mike Sutton. In this lively and insightful discussion, Sutton talks tactics and challenges behind his first experience as CEO and how he's leveraged his background to grow Pinellas’ Habitat into the second largest affiliate in the country…
 
On this episode of SPx, host Ashley Ryneska welcomes local change agent Emery Ivery, Chief Impact Officer of United Way Suncoast to the show. Ivery talks the business of philanthropy, and the impact the United Way has made through thriving corporate partnerships with companies like Baycare, the Tampa Bay Rays, and Duke Energy. He shares the values …
 
On this episode of SPx, Ashley and Joe co-host Beth Houghton, executive director of the St. Pete Free Clinic. Houghton has received the most shout-outs on our show to date - for good reason. Equipped as a CPA, attorney, and MBA, this local powerhouse has chosen to spend the last six years leading one of the largest non-profit organizations in Tampa…
 
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