Speakers

Rita Craig
Keynote Speaker


Rita draws from her life experience as one of 11 siblings, delighting audiences with her inspirational outlook, anecdotal approach to business strategies and irresistible charm. Well-versed in the issues that confront today’s individuals and well-grounded in down-to-earth reality, Rita knows how to get things done. She has developed and implemented hundreds of customized strategies for clients around the globe on such topics as leadership, ethics, personal success and organizational effectiveness, to name only a few. She insightfully speaks on topics like embracing diversity, managing multi-generational situations and creating vision in a style that is entertaining as well as transformational—as evidenced by her client list of Fortune 50-500 companies in the United States, Canada, Europe, China, Singapore and Latin America, including Microsoft, Tyco, Johnson & Johnson and many others.


A member of the National Speakers Association (NSA) and the Global Speakers Federation, Rita has spoken before audiences of every size. Her publishing credits include Welcome to the Workforce, I Showed You So, and a manuscript entitled, Ethics: The Hot New ‘E’ Word, featured in the NSA’s first-ever book, Paid To Speak. She has an MBA with a Specialty in Human Resources from Nova University, and has also completed Columbia University’s Human Resources Executive Management Program, as well as being an active participant and supporter of numerous community and civic projects in her native Palm Beach Gardens area.





Annalee Leonard

Founder and President of Mainstay Financial Group


Annalee Leonard, Founder and President of Mainstay Financial Group, specializes in working with retirees and pre-retirees to preserve their assets and help ensure that their money lasts. Annalee is licensed in insurance and investments and since 1990 has helped many of her clients lower their
income taxes, protect their estate values, and increase their legacy with their IRAs over multiple generations. 


In 2009, Annalee was accepted into Ed Slott’s Elite IRA Advisor Group™. As a Master Elite IRA Advisor, Annalee is dedicated to solving the country’s biggest and most complex financial prob­lem - effectively managing the distribution of assets from Individual Retirement Accounts. 


Annalee is the host of her own radio show “Winning with Annalee ” and is the author of “It’s More than Returns: Getting to the Heart of Retirement Planning”. She has been interviewed by and quoted in the Wall Street Journal, and on Fox and NBCnews.com. Through affiliation with several hospital
senior affinity groups, she presents Financial Matters, a monthly program on a variety of financial topics relevant to seniors from Mobile, Alabama to Port St. Joe, Florida. She teaches a community education course, Financial Survival for Retirement through Pensacola State College in Florida and Faulkner State Community College in Alabama. 


Annalee was named the 2013 Jack Keeter Study Group Advisor of the Year. She is a member of Impact 100 Pensacola, Suncrest Omni Home Health Advisory Board, and is a Board Member of WOMAN, a national mentoring organization for women in the financial field. A native of Louisiana,

Annalee has resided in the Pensacola area since 1990. Her hobbies are golfing, enjoying the beach, travelling in her motor home and caring for her “smile committee” and office entertainers, Beau, Jolie and Bella.




​​Kathleen Demaria


Kathy DeMaria is a shareholder in the law firm of Smith, Sauer & DeMaria.  She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of West Florida with honors and her law degree from Duquesne University School of Law.


Kathy is one of five practicing attorneys in the Pensacola area certified by the Florida Bar in Wills, Trusts and Estates.  She is the past President of the Pilot Club of Pensacola, the Northwest Florida Estate Planning Council, and the Pensacola Women’s Alliance, and serves on numerous other boards of civic and community organizations. Kathy is also a frequent lecturer on Estate Planning and has authored numerous articles for the Pensacola News Journal and other publications.



Joan Connell, PhD


Joan Connell joined the Mainstay Financial Group team in 2001 after retiring from the Nursing Department Head position at Pensacola Junior College in Pensacola, FL. In 2002, she retired from the US Army Reserves Nurse Corps at the rank of Lt. Colonel.   
In addition to her nursing credentials as a registered nurse (RN), she became certified in long term health care insurance through the Corporation for Long Term Care (CLTC) and American Health Insurance Plans (LTCP). Her 32 years of nursing practice combined with her insurance experience enables her to be Mainstay's Long Term Care and Medicare options specialist.



Gwen Gore

Owner of Gore Business Solutions


Gwen Gore is owner of Gore Business Solutions. She retired after 35 years with the government. She spent ten years with the Social Security Administration as a Claims Representative and 25 years with the IRS in forensic auditing as a Revenue Agent and Supervisory Revenue Agent.   


Her experience gives her a wide range of Social Security law, tax law, and auditing knowledge and skill. She has a BBA in Finance and is an Enrolled Agent, licensed to practice before the IRS and qualified to prepare your tax return. Gwen also offers trusted services for personal finance management including bill-paying, insurance/Medicare claims and managing accounts, or serving
as trustee for estates. She is a member of the National Association of Enrolled Agents, National Association of Tax Professionals and a member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. 


Locally, Gwen is a member of Trinity Presbyterian Church, and serves as Treasurer for the Pensacola Women’s Alliance and Pensacola Symphony Orchestra Guild.  Her motto is “I love paperwork, so let me know how I can reduce yours!”


Dr. Ann Payne-Johnson

Board-certified in family medicine, Dr. Johnson earned her medical degree from Spartan Health Sciences University in Vieux Fort, St. Lucia. She completed residency training at the University of Tennessee Department of Family Medicine in Jackson, Tenn. Dr. Johnson additionally holds a Master of Science degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg, Miss.


Dr. Johnson specializes in family health, including children’s (from infancy to adolescence) healthcare. She has medical interests in preventive care, women’s health issues, and stress reduction, as well as marriage and family therapy.


A self-described gadget “junkie,” in her free time, Dr. Johnson enjoys working out, reading, going to the beach, and spending time with her family. She and her husband, Jerome, have two children.



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