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Our Team


JOHNETTE ISHAM

johnette@realizebradenton.com
As Executive Director, Johnette leads mission impact and partnership development.

SOMETHING I NEVER WANT TO DO AGAIN…
Compete in a lettuce-eating contest.

ON THE WEEKENDS…
I pull weeds in my butterfly garden.

LITTLE KNOWN FACT…
I was on American Funniest Videos.

MY MOST INSPIRATIONAL MOMENT…
Meeting Buckminster Fuller.

FAVORITE PLACE TO HANG OUT DOWNTOWN?
In my new kitchen cooking.WHAT IS YOUR HIDDEN TALENT?
Dressing up in crazy costumes.


JOANNA BAILEY

accounting@realizebradenton.com
As Event Coordinator and Support Specialist, Joanna offers her passion for organizing and eagle eye to detail in supporting Realize Bradenton’s staff, events, and daily operations.

I AM PASSIONATE ABOUT…
Organizing and party planning.

AN UNCOMMON FACT ABOUT ME IS…
I love to sing karaoke (I’m not saying I’m good at it).

CHILDHOOD DREAM…
My childhood dream job was to work at a zoo.

FAVORITE HANGOUT…
My favorite place to hang out downtown is the Riverwalk; but I love to eat breakfast at Robin’s, lunch at B’town, and dinner at O’Bricks.

HOMETOWN?
Durham, North Carolina.


ANDREA KNIES

engagement@realizebradenton.com
As Director of Communications and Community Engagement, Andrea is responsible for sharing Realize Bradenton’s initiatives with the community, as well as connecting people to the mission of promoting economic growth in Downtown Bradenton.

I AM PASSIONATE ABOUT…
History. Especially local history. I love to know who stood on the very ground that we are standing on now!

AN UNCOMMON FACT ABOUT ME IS…
I was on an episode of My First Home on TLC.

FAVORITE PLACE TO HANG OUT DOWNTOWN?
Historical Records Library

HOMETOWN?
The teeny, tiny, sweet town of Ireland, Indiana.


LISA DIFRANZA

coorordinator@realizebradenton.com

As Project Coordinator, Lisa’s job is to collaborate, coordinate, and make things happen.

FAVORITE THING TO DO IN BRADENTON?
I love taking a walk from downtown Bradenton into the Village of the Arts.

HOMETOWN?
I’m a New Yorker, born and raised in the heart of Manhattan. My adopted home town, where I lived for decades, is Portland, Maine. 

ON THE WEEKENDS
My partner and I love to visit art and craft fairs and farmers markets, and try new restaurants.

UNCOMMON FACTS ABOUT ME…
– I have an unusual masters degree, in Theology and the Arts.
– During the pandemic I created a piece of art every day for 365 days.

I AM PASSIONATE ABOUT
Creating art, collaborating, eating good food, and exploring coastal places. 


KAREN CORBIN

karen@realizebradenton.com
As Development Director, Karen assures that we tell the story of how we engage people and promote civic pride to encourage partnerships with individuals, businesses, and cultural partners. These partnerships will allow Realize Bradenton do all of the fun and cool things, like public art, free Music in the Park and ArtSlam.

FAVORITE PLACE TO HANG OUT IN DOWNTOWN…
Bradenton Riverwalk, and it’s only a short walk to Mattison Riverwalk Grille when you get thirsty!

WHAT WAS YOUR CHILDHOOD DREAM…
To be a figure skater, I loved to skate!

AN UNCOMMON FACT ABOUT ME IS…
I owned and operated a soft serve ice cream truck for 10 years.

HOMETOWN?
Tolland, Connecticut.

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