|Meet the Team|
Ester Venouziou, founder and president
Ester Venouziou started LocalShops1 to help her parents find local shops and restaurants when they were visiting from New Jersey. At the time Ester was a full-time journalist at the St. Petersburg Times (now the Tampa Bay Times), and she found she was spending the rest of her time meeting business owners and brainstorming ways to grow Tampa Bay's Buy Local movement. With their support and encouragement, LocalShops1 grew into the area's leading advocate for small businesses, a socially conscious company with a mission. Ester, who has degrees in psychology and journalism from Boston University, moved to Florida in the early 1990s and to the Tampa Bay region in 2003. She has won numerous awards through her work at LocalShops1, where she now works full time.
Mo Venouziou, vice president
Mo joined his sister at LocalShops1 in November 2011, with the goal of integrating the efforts of buy local advocates and business groups across the Tampa Bay. He has a
doctorate in mathematics from Syracuse University and bachelor's degrees
in economics and mathematics from the University of Rochester. In addition to working full time at LocalShops1, Mo is an adjunct professor at St. Petersburg College.
Billie Jo Grassinger Bell