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Southwest Florida trade group names member of the year

Jopie Helsen, owner of the Sailor’s Wharf in St. Petersburg, Fla., was named Member of the Year.

Jopie Helsen, owner of the Sailor’s Wharf in St. Petersburg, Fla., was named Member of the Year by the Southwest Florida Marine Industries Association at its recent annual dinner.

“Jopie has been an outstanding advocate of the marine industry for many years and has played a huge role in the growth of our association in the Tampa Bay region,” association president Hans Wilson said in a statement.

“In particular, his role in protecting the interests of recreational boating in the development of St. Petersburg’s master plan for their downtown waterfront is a classic example of what drive and determination can achieve,” Wilson said. “The marine industry is very fortunate to have someone as dedicated as Jopie is to the boating lifestyle.”

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