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EDC honors Shah for ‘Distinguished Service’ Lovell for ‘Volunteer of the Year’
Awards presented during the EDC’s signature Annual Meeting

Space Coast, FLA (February 19, 2023) – During its Annual Meeting on January 24 at the Maxwell C. King Center for Performing Arts, the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast (EDC) awarded the Gary R. Cunningham Distinguished Service Award for Economic Development to Mr. Manesh “Mike” R. Shah, Founder and CEO of Southeast Petro Distributors, Inc., and its EDC Volunteer of the Year Award to Ms. Shaunna B. Lovell, former Director of Space Launch Delta.

“Mike Shah has not only demonstrated success in the business world but has also exemplified what it means to be a community leader. Through his commitment to giving back and improving Florida’s Space Coast, he leaves a lasting impact that benefits both the present and future generations,” said EDC President and CEO Lynda L. Weatherman. “Shaunna Lovell’s innovation, resource mobilization skills, and support for community projects have greatly enhanced the EDC’s programs, making her an exemplary volunteer for positive impact. Every community would be fortunate to have someone like Mike Shah or Shaunna Lovell.”

The Gary R. Cunningham Distinguished Service Award for Economic Development was established in 2006 and is presented to an individual who has made long standing, consistent, and highly valued contributions to further economic development through community efforts on the Space Coast. “Like the namesake of the award he received, Mike understands the importance of community engagement. He has always been committed to employing his resources for the betterment of the Space Coast and toward ensuring that others have opportunities to realize their dreams” said Artemis I.T. CEO Travis Proctor, Chair of the EDC Board of Directors.

“Companies create jobs, but success depends on the employee and stakeholders, coupled with the company’s involvement in the local community. Which is very important. That’s what is so great about the EDC – their mission is to make our community THE community of choice, so that businesses want to come here, and so that they are successful within our community”, praised Mike Shah.  “My goal has been, and will continue to be, to empower others to achieve the American Dream. Everybody can achieve their American Dream if we all help each other, together.”

“I’m very grateful and honored to receive the Distinguished Service Award. Thank you, EDC, executive staff, and board of directors,” expressed Mike Shah.  “I love Brevard County. I call myself one of the locals. I have turned my American Dream into reality, and my appreciation for that goes to a lot of people; my friends, the community of Brevard County, my family, my wife, my children, and of course Southeast Petro.”

Mr. Shah’s unparalleled work ethic and business acumen have driven remarkable success through his career. An influential advocate, Shah’s powerful voice draws support for diverse causes, leaving a lasting impact on business development, and philanthropy. This award recognizes his outstanding leadership and contributions, solidifying his legacy in both business and community service.

The EDC’s Volunteer of the Year Award is presented annually to an individual who has gone above and beyond the call of duty for the betterment of Florida’s Space Coast.  Shaunna Lovell’s pivotal role as a liaison between the EDC, Patrick Space Force Base, and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station has been instrumental in fostering collaboration and driving positive outcomes.

“Her outstanding dedication and commitment to community service have set her apart. Particularly noteworthy are Shaunna’s efforts in securing base support for EDC Defense grants, significantly benefiting the military community in the Patrick Space Force Base area,” stated EDC President and CEO Lynda L. Weatherman.  “This well-deserved praise reflects Lovell’s commitment to enhancing the economic and social fabric of the region.”

“I stand humbled and honored to receive the EDC Volunteer of the Year Award. Growing up in a military family taught me the value of community support,” stated Lovell.  “The Space Coast has embraced our military and demonstrated commitment to a robust community. Thanks to the EDC, my family, and continued engagement, we’re building a community filled with joy. Here’s to a future of prosperity, unity, and boundless possibilities. Thank you, EDC, for this honor.”

Awards were presented as part of the event program which also included the unveiling of “Florida’s Space Coast: Tomorrow Launches Here” brand. To learn more visit


About the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast
The Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast (EDC) is dedicated to attracting new business and investment and expanding existing industry throughout the Space Coast, influencing change on government laws and regulations affecting economic development, promoting the Space Coast to encourage new investment, supporting efforts of Space Coast military installations, and relaying new programs and procedures to assist manufacturing and high-tech companies. The EDC is a private, not-for-profit coalition whose stakeholders are business leaders committed to the economic growth and stability of Florida’s Space Coast. Visit