Biz Buzz: H&R Block

From left, aret: Lisa Kern, Calvin Lockey and Nikki Velleux.

You may be wondering why there would be a story in October about H & R Block. Many do not think about the company until tax season. However, H & R Block has more services to offer the community throughout the year than merely filing taxes.

Marketing Managers Nikki Velleux and Lisa Kern, joined by their Office Manager, Calvin Lockey provided clarity about the company. Hare Taylor, LLC owns two CPA firms and seven H & R Block franchises within the area, with their newest location being on Panama City Beach.

Lisa was born and raised in Frankenmuth, Michigan. She graduated from Frankenmuth High School and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Psychology with a minor in Marketing from Saginaw Valley State University, also in Michigan. Lisa explained how she had “worked everything from cleaning pools to marketing for a flower shop.” For a time Lisa was a stay at home mother with two adopted children: Gabriel, age 13, and Laela, age 11. In 2012 Lisa moved to the Panama City Beach area and began working for Chuck Taylor, owner of Hare Taylor LLC. After three years, Lisa went to work for a nonprofit children’s home society in Panama City for one year. Later, Lisa went to work for Panama City Toyota. However, after about two years she went back to working for Chuck. Her experience with so many aspects of marketing and giving back to the community has made her invaluable to the company.

Nikki is originally from Providence, Rhode Island. She graduated from Scituate High School and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice with a minor in Psychology from Johnson and Wales University. Nikki claims she tried her hand at everything from retail to hospitality before going to work for MetLife as a Group Underwriter. She was just before being promoted to the corporate office, when she met and married Tom, a military Fighter Jet WSO, and moved to Goldsboro, North Carolina. They lived in Goldsboro for about seven years and began raising a family. While living in England at Lakenheath Air Force Base for three years, their third child was born. Like many military families they moved around, this next time to Tucson, Arizona for two years, and finally to Panama City Beach in July of 2017. Tom now works for Tyndall Air Force Base. They have three children: Madison, 11; Shelby, 9 and Reagan, 6. Nikki wears many hats. She is PTO president at her children’s school. She’s a Girl Scout Troup Leader and one of the elves for Salvage Santa. After Hurricane Michael, Nikki and Lisa met and began working together with volunteer recovery efforts.

While Nikki and Lisa are from the north, Calvin Lockey was born and raised in Marianna. He graduated from Marianna High School and attended Florida State University. Calvin then decided to join the Navy, and served for more than 20 years in submarine service. Soon after joining the military, he married his high school sweetheart, Debra Hall. Since then, she has moved with him ten times. The couple has two daughters: Heather and Chelsea. They also have three grandchildren: Abigail, Annyston and Layla. After retiring from the Navy, Calvin graduated from Chipola College and Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. He went to work for the Florida Department of Corrections at Jackson Correctional Institute in Malone. During that time Calvin began learning and working part-time with taxes. At first he worked for a different franchise, but now is proud to work for Chuck at H & R Block.

H & R Block provides complete tax services from personal to corporate returns. The company provides IRS tax notice services. Taxes are very confusing to those of us who do not have a financial background. However, the Marianna H & R Block team explained that if you get a tax notice, bring it in, and they will help you understand what it means and why you are receiving it. If necessary, they will also assist in IRS tax resolution. The company also provides bookkeeping and payroll services. At the local H & R Block office, Calvin has the capability of online tax returns. Don’t forget that Oct. 15, is the C-Corporations and Industry Tax Return deadline.

H & R Block in Marianna loves to give back to the community. They are a proud supporter of the Marianna Farmer’s Market. After Hurricane Michael they provided three appreciation lunches at Madison Street Park during March and April. Calvin explained that there is a heavy emphasis in the organization for supporting local schools and nonprofits. If anyone has needs in the community, contact Calvin.

Visit H & R Block in Marianna at 4466 Lafayette Street, in Marianna. During tax season, January until April 15, the office is open every day. From Thanksgiving until Jan. 1, the office is open three-to-four days a week. Currently, the office is open on Wednesdays, from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., or by appointment. To find out more, call 850-482-9005. What a great business to have in Marianna! Visit the City of Marianna’s website at http://www.mariannafl.city/335/New-Businesses-and-Other-Community-News to learn more about businesses in Marianna.

Kay Dennis, MBA, MPA, A.I.C.P., is the director of Municipal Development for the City of Marianna.

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