FOLLOW THE LEADERS 2023
Meet the Panelist
Follow the Leaders brings together leaders from Lakeland and the surrounding areas in a panel discussion, where speakers share advice and wisdom with EMERGE members and the community. Ranging from EMERGE alumni to C-Suite executives, from entrepreneurs to non-profit directors, speakers for this event serve as inspiration to the next generation of young professionals in Lakeland. This event provides a rare opportunity to interact one-on-one with community pacesetters and get to know them personally. Meet this year's Expert Executives!
Community Relations Manager of the Lakeland Division, Publix
Brian is a life-long resident of Plant City, a graduate of Plant City High School and Florida Southern College where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resource Management, with a minor in Finance.
He began his career with Publix Super Markets in 1991, and is the Community Relations Manager covering central and southwest Florida.
Brian currently serves as board member for the East Hillsborough Law Enforcement Appreciation Association, board member for Unity in the Community, and as Associate Director for the Florida Strawberry Festival.
Brian and his wife, Jennifer, have three children; Elizabeth (18), Elijah (14) and Emory (10) – affectionately described as the smart one, the sweet one and the devil, respectively.
President & CEO, United Way of Central Florida
Christina, a graduate of the University of Florida, has dedicated her life to nonprofit work. With a master’s degree in family, youth and community sciences, Christina is passionate about improving lives and strengthening our community. Starting her career at United Way Worldwide, Christina has served our Central Florida community for over a decade and is now the President and CEO of United Way of Central Florida.
Christina serves on the boards of Polk Vision, Association of Fundraising Professionals Florida Caucus, and GiveWell Community Foundation. She is a member of Leadership Lakeland Alumni, Leadership Polk, and the Junior League of Greater Lakeland Sustainers. She looks forward to joining the University of Florida Foundation Alumni Board in July and she is a graduate of the UWW Advanced Leadership Program.
CEO, Bonnet Springs Park
Josh has had an exciting career in recreation, tourism and hospitality that has spanned seven states over the past 25 years. He is a graduate of The University of Arkansas. He spent most of his career in the waterpark, theme park, and resort industries before moving into the non-profit sector of privately funded public parks.
Josh joined Bonnet Springs Park in August of 2020 with the goal of making Bonnet Springs Park a world class attraction and destination.
Josh and his wife, Meredith, have two sons, Kyle (11) and Caleb (10). When he is not working, Josh has several hobbies and spends as much time with his family as possible. He enjoys watching his sons play sports, visiting the Orlando theme parks, and he is an avid car enthusiast.
President & CEO, MIDFLORIDA Credit Union
Steve Moseley is currently the President and CEO of Lakeland, Florida-based MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, a position he was promoted to in March 2022.
Throughout his more than 25 years of service at MIDFLORIDA, Mr. Moseley has worked in nearly every aspect of the credit union. He has held positions as the Chief Financial Officer and Executive President of MIDFLORIDA’s Financial Services division prior to his promotion to
President of the Credit Union in 2017. Today, Moseley oversees MIDFLORIDA’s $7 billion in assets and almost 65 full-service branches serving over 450,000 members across the state of Florida.
Prior to his long tenure with MIDFLORIDA, Moseley worked as a C.P.A., attained his MBA from Florida Southern College and his Accounting degree from Stetson University.
Vice President, Lakeland Chamber of Commerce
Phillip Walker graduated from Kathleen High School and has a Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Rollins College. Prior to his retirement as Owner and Agency Principal of a Lakeland Allstate Insurance agency for over 26 years, Mr. Walker was a Lakeland Police Officer. In 2009, Mr. Walker was elected to the Lakeland City Commission where he served on and
oversaw several committees until 2022.
In his current role as the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce’s Vice President, Partnerships & Research, Mr. Walker is responsible for fostering partnerships and collaborations that strengthen the health of Lakeland businesses and delivering locally focused research that will guide
In addition to his role at the Lakeland Chamber, Mr. Walker is a life-long Lakeland resident and proudly serves on the following boards: Salvation Army, Chapters Health System, The Schools of McKeel Academy, and Christ Community Christian Center. He is also founder and member of the Lakeland/Polk County Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Mr. Walker is married to Cappie D. Cooke and they have three adult children, Janelle, Jaela, and Christian Phillip, as well as two other adult children Tony Williams and John Eric Hall who are a part of the Walker family.