The annual conference of the Florida State Massage Therapy Association, held July 2-6 in Boca Raton, Florida, featured the association’s trademark Successful Start Program, geared to assisting students and new therapists get started in the massage field.

“Massage students and therapists packed the Boca Raton Resort to hear top industry leaders share knowledge on getting started and giving tips and advice on how to achieve success in the massage profession,” said FSMTA President Maureen Gilbert. “This program has become the traditional start for the FSMTA Convention and it gets better every year.” This year, approximately 300 people attended the program, she added.

Other convention highlights included:

• The installation of officers for the next two-year term of office: Maureen Gilbert as president, Deborah McConnell as first vice president, Marion-Padgett as second vice president, Heather Lehnertz as secretary and Terry Anderson as state treasurer.

• Massage Warehouse organized its Sanctuary to raise money for the Touch Research Institutes (TRI). Several other vendors joined in the fund-raising including Massage Envy and the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, and more than $15,000 was raised for TRI.

• The State Awards presentation to: Sports Massage Therapist of the Year, Andrew Harden; Outstanding State Service, Clara Brosnaham, Vivian Madison and Lee Thompson; and State LMT of the Year, Sam Campano.

• A representative of MASSAGE Magazine, the convention media sponsor, presented the FSMTA with a contribution of $4,000.

• Presentation of the Performance Health Humanitarian of the Year Award. (See the News section in MASSAGE Magazine’s September issue to read Florida Humanitarian Honored.”)