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Office of Vice President and
Chief of Staff
Florida Gulf Coast University
10501 FGCU Blvd S.
Fort Myers, FL. 33965-6565

Phone: (239) 590-1006
Fax:     (239) 590-1066

Press Release


FGCU Small Business Development Center Partners with Cape Coral Police Department to Educate Small Business Owners on How to Protect their Businesses

FORT MYERS, FL - Florida Gulf Coast University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) has joined forces with the City of Cape Coral's Police Department to offer free seminars educating small business owners on how to protect their businesses.

The first seminar, "Employee Fraud, an Inside Look at Your Business," will be held on Thursday, Sept. 24 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Hampton Inn & Suites at 619 S.E. 47th Terrace in Cape Coral, and includes a continental breakfast.

The seminar is free to attend but registration is required. For more information, or to register, contact Judy Pultro at the SBDC Cape Coral office at (239) 573-2737 or register online at

According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners' 2008 Report to the Nation, a typical U.S. Organization loses 7 percent of its annual revenue to fraud. A typical occupational fraud lasts two years before it is detected, and small businesses suffer higher and disproportionate fraud losses. Median loss in businesses with fewer than 100 employees is $200,000 per scheme.

The SBDC will present on the impact employee fraud has on small business. Gerry Moll, District Resource Officer for the Cape Coral Police Department, will present on identifying, reducing and preventing employee fraud. Laura Rhoad, Human Resources Director for Sunshine Ace Hardware, will present on good hiring procedures, and employer's rights with regard to discipline and termination. Moll and Rhoad will educate small business owners on what steps they should take when they suspect an employee is stealing from their business. Paul Poland, Assistant State Attorney assigned to the Fort Myers region, will present on the criminal charges applicable to employee theft, admissibility of evidence, the criminal prosecution process and restitution to the small business owner.

Sponsors for this program include the FGCU mall Business Development Center, Cape Coral Police Department, Sunshine Ace Hardware, Office of the State Attorney of the 20th Judicial Circuit of Florida, the Hampton Inn & Suites, AdSource and McDonald's.

The SBDC and the Cape Coral Police Department are in the planning stages of a second small business seminar on retail theft to take place in early November to prepare small business owners for the upcoming holiday shopping season.

For further information, contact Pultro at (239) 573-2737 or

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