Ms. Merchant’s career of more than 30 years of public and private sector experiences enables her to provide clients with a unique perspective. She is President of The Merchant Strategy, Inc. (TMS), has been a Member of the Florida House of Representatives, and is Vice President of the family equipment rental business. At TMS she is responsible for development of new clients, public involvement and government/community relations.
She learned public involvement while helping newly elected Mayor Lois Frankel solve transportation related challenges by communicating with stakeholders. Early proactive communication with neighbors, local businesses, and commuters manages expectations and minimizes inconveniences. TMS regularly teams with engineering firms and municipalities to ensure that all impacted parties are part of the solution.
As a Legislative Assistant and then Member, she learned the process of state and local government from the bottom up. In her award-winning legislative career, Merchant served as Chair of the Appropriations Committee on Transportation and Economic Development, the Juvenile Justice Committee and the Palm Beach County Legislative Delegation, and Vice Chair of the Utilities and Telecommunication Committee.
Merchant selectively teams with planners and developers working on new developments that benefit the region. Her job is to connect the team with the decision makers, both public and private, and to help present the value proposition for home owners, business and any other impacted party. A fifth generation Floridian, she believes in smart growth.
Commitment to community is expressed in Merchant’s service on the boards of the South Florida Fair, Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center and the Historical Society of Palm Beach County. She serves on the Executive Trustee Council for the Palm Beach North Chamber of Commerce. She has been recognized by the Florida Chamber of Commerce, is 6 time winner of the Roll Call Award, given to the Top 40 Legislators, Nature Conservancy Legislator of the Year, Gulfstream Goodwill Industries Award for Dedication (1st ever given), Association of General Contractors of America for Outstanding Service and numerous others.
Merchant earned a Bachelor’s degree in International Affairs, with minors in Spanish and Business at The Florida State University.