Thursday, March 23, 2017

Orlando, Fla. — The Central Florida Livery Association (CFLA) recently announced that they have secured the domain name for their website. The Orlando-based non-profit organization purchased the domain in an effort to elevate the CFLA brand.

"We always wanted since day one, but our board unfortunately voted against the idea last year due to financial circumstances. It was a bit early for us.” said Wendy Kleefisch, CFLA president.

New CFLA vendor director, Ryan Hilberth, CEO of Rental Limo and Book.Limo, made an effort to spruce up the association’s website's design and encouraged the CFLA to seriously consider acquiring the domain after bringing in new vendor sponsorship money.

CFLA President Wendy KleefischCFLA President Wendy Kleefisch "Looking at other marquee limo associations such as the NLA, GCLA, and LANJ using “four-letter dot org” domains, it was a no-brainer that we needed to figure out how to get this domain name ASAP for the CFLA," said Hilberth.

CFLA Vendor Director Ryan Hilberth of Rental Limo and Book.LimoCFLA Vendor Director Ryan Hilberth of Rental Limo and Book.Limo After raising the funds necessary to make the deal happen, the board voted again recently on the initiative, this time deciding to invest heavily in the CFLA's online home once and for all. The association will also give each of their members a personal email under the domain.

In other news, the CFLA held its vendor appreciation meeting on March 7 to allow vendor members a chance to share swag items and an elevator pitch to its members. Battisti Customs sponsored the meeting, and President Bill Battisti was welcomed as guest speaker.

The next CFLA meeting is scheduled for April 11.

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CD RetreatBy now, you know that a Chauffeur Driven Retreat will deliver world-class education and networking opportunities wrapped in an unforgettable city experience. This June 22 through 25 join us at the Hotel Nikko in San Francisco for an unparalleled event. The full pass is priced at just $799, thanks in part to all of our sponsors, including Platinum Sponsors Grech Motors and Ford-Lincoln Limousine & Livery Vehicles. Here is just a bit of what’s included in that price tag…

Kicking off the retreat in style, retreat goers will be able to network the night away at our Opening Reception Sunday. You can live it up at the posh Starlight Room, located at the penthouse level of the Sir Francis Drake hotel. Name your drink while you dine on hot hors d’ourves, prime rib, and roast turkey in this icon of San Francisco nightlife.

Day One promises tailor-made industry education, we have titled it Contingency Planning: Stress-Testing Your Business for Likely Shock Scenarios. Part one is dedicated to your staff. The session—featuring highly respected industry colleague Kristina Bouweiri of Reston Limousine and Christina Davis of The LMC Group, author of our monthly HR Coach—will explore such areas as preparing for the sudden loss or death of a key employee, or dealing with the departure of multiple employees in a short period of time. Moderated by Kristen Carroll of The LMC Group (and frequent contributing writer to CD), the series will tackle additional thorny and often frustrating topics with proven strategies, balanced solutions, and a bit of humor.

Hornblower Spirit NightAfter a brief break for a delicious lunch, part two will tackle the finance side of your business. This series, moderated by Jason Sharenow of Broadway Elite Chauffeured Services Worldwide, includes speaker Kathy Kahne of Windy City Limousine. These industry leaders will discuss how to ready your company and financial positioning before economic dips. This session will give you the peace of mind you need to think intelligently during a crisis rather than impulsively.

After the education on Day One “shocks” your system, you can see more of the City sites--relax and unwind on a Hornblower Cruise. Yes, a private yacht has been chartered for your sailing pleasure Monday night. Step aboard the San Francisco Spirit and be treated to a welcome cocktail as you take in the skyline views on this expansive 150-foot beauty. Our extravagant dinner evening will include a three-course meal and drinks while you revel in sites along the San Francisco Bay.

Day Two features Embracing Change at the Speed of Trust, a program worth more than the cost of the entire retreat. This session will show you how to improve loyalty, leverage change, and close the trust gap within your company. After this heady two-part FranklinCovey session and a catered lunch, you may want some downtime. Relax and enjoy an evening break on your own, but we’ll have suggestions for dining and drinking—keep making those connections. You may want to turn in early, we don’t want you to miss the tour of Napa Valley on the final day.

Executive Retreat education and workshopsEasily a value of $300 itself, our Napa Valley experience is certain to wow you. Hop on a Grech bus for a boxed breakfast and luxury tour up St. Helena highway to this world-famous wine-making region. The first grapes were planted here in 1838, and centuries of winemakers have caused Napa Valley to now rival international vintages. We have a delicious catered lunch at Napa Ford Lincoln plus three wineries on the schedule; here are just a few details about each…

Over 25 years ago, Spain's oldest winemaking family ventured to a new world. After being greeted with a flute of Grand Reserve Sparkling Brut Rose (retail $50 per bottle), a wine educator will teach us about the Carneros region and the vintages it is known for--you will enjoy a private tour of the grounds, warehouse, production and the barrel room where our tasting of three hand-selected Reserve wines will occur amid the ambiance of the old world.

You know the name for a reason. In 1876, brothers Jacob and Frederick Beringer started with a dream of making wines that would rival the finest in Europe. Upon arrival at the vineyards, you’ll be greeted with a splash of wine before starting up to the caves.

Napa ValleyThis private experience will include the detailed history of the Beringer family and this oldest continually running winery in Napa Valley. Retreat goers will sample a second vintage in the caves, surrounded by historic tunnels and aged barrels. Visitors can’t help but be impressed by Rhine House mansion. You’ll stop here for our last splash of wine and a photo op.

Founded in 1964, Sterling Vineyards is an experience unto itself. Perched 300 feet above the town of Calistoga, Sterling Vineyards offers panoramic views of Napa Valley. Their tram is the only one of its kind in Napa valley, offering stunning views as groups ride to or from the winery. You’ll be tasting four of their exclusive wines and following the winemaking process from grape to glass at our own pace. All of this makes it easy to see why Sterling Vineyards is one of the most visited wineries in the Napa Valley.

We are including all this and more for the cost of a pass, and your spouse can join for only $399. Don’t wait to register, this retreat is limited to 200 operators, and you should not miss the action. If you would like more information on the retreat or any of the highlights above, contact Jess Pavlow our director of events at 856.452.0323. Visit for more information.


L to R: BCF Executive Director Ira Goldstein, New York City Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez (D-10), BCF Chairman Berj Haroutunian, and former TLC Commissioner Matt Daus of Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf New York, N.Y. — The Black Car Fund (BCF), New York’s non-profit organization protecting for-hire drivers and passengers, announced EmpireCLS Worldwide Chauffeured Services has joined in order to provide its drivers with workers’ compensation coverage.

Founded in Norwood, New Jersey in 1980, EmpireCLS has a long history in high-level ground transportation service, and BCF is very excited to be adding to its list of covered bases. BCF Chairman of the Board, Berj Haroutunian said, “We are proud to have such a prestigious and diverse company joining The Fund. EmpireCLS has a long history spanning over 30 years, and in that time has offered nothing but exceptional service at every level. I look forward to a mutually beneficial, long-term relationship with EmpireCLS, and I am glad the leadership recognizes the value The Fund will add to its already impressive level of service.”

According to New York State statute, all bases (or central dispatch facilities) that obtain more than 90 percent of their for-hire business on payment other than direct cash by a passenger but do not own 50 percent or more of the cars it dispatches are required to obtain membership with BCF.

“The Black Car Fund has an extraordinary history, and I was thrilled when I learned EmpireCLS met the requirements for membership. Not only is it a cost-effective way of providing our workers with mandated workers’ compensation coverage, but its available Safety and Wellness classes will largely bolster the training my drivers currently receive in-house,” EmpireCLS’ Chairman and CEO David Seelinger says. “At the end of the day, The Black Car Fund not only effectively addresses a need, but it also contributes to a higher level of customer service, and in turn, increased business.”

EmpireCLS is not the only company to join recently — Commonwealth Worldwide Chauffeured Transportation of N.Y., Carey Limousine, and Tristar Services (US) have also become members of BCF. Executive Director Ira Goldstein says: “The Fund is excited to be adding such prestigious and diverse companies to its family of covered bases.”

In other news, Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez (D-10) was recently honored by the Fund. About 30 members turned out to hear Councilman speak about issues related to the chauffeured transportation industry. Rodriguez has been the chair of the transportation committee of the city council for nearly four years, and BCF looks forward to working with Councilman for the duration of his term. “He is always willing to listen and learn more about the for-hire transportation and taxi industries,” says Jason Fromberg, communications and social media specialist for the Fund. “He was instrumental in getting the Taxi and Limousine Commission’s mandatory vehicle retirement for black cars repealed.”

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