The First Annual Florida Cigar Summit Luncheon with Florida's Republican Leadership was held at the Historic J.C. Newman Cigar Factory in Tampa's Ybor City on Friday, February 26, 2010, where cigar manufacturers, cigar leaf growers, cigar brokers, premium cigar retailers, and consumers had the chance to discuss the issues facing Florida's Cigar Industry.
The Florida Cigar Summit was planned in conjunction with the Cigar Association of America, the International Premium Cigar and Pipe Retailers Association, and the Cigar Rights of America. It included a tour JC Newman's Cigar Museum and a tour of Tampa's only cigar factory that is currently rolling cigars.
Invited Republican Leadership guests included Attorney General Bill McCollum (Florida Gubernatorial Candidate), President Jeff Atwater (FL Senate), President Designate Mike Haridopolos (FL Senate), Majority Leader Alex Diaz de la Portilla (FL Senate), Representative Will Weatherford (FL House of Representatives). Additional invitees included the following Florida Senators: Thad Altman, Mike Bennett, Victor Crist, Don Gaetz, Rudy Garcia, Andy Gardiner, and John Thrasher. Invitees from the Florida House of Representatives included the following: Steve Crisafulli, Chris Dorworth, Scott Plakon, and Steve Precourt.
Chair Committee Members included Corona Cigar Company, J.C. Newman Cigar Company, Rocky Patel Cigars, Tabacalera Perdomo, and Thompson Cigars. VIP Host Committee Sponsors included Arturo Fuente Cigars, Camacho Cigars, CAO International, Drew Estate, Nestor Placenica, and Oliva Tobacco (Tampa). Manufacturer Sponsors included Action Label, Alec Bradley Cigars, Ashton Cigars, Casa Fernandez/AGANORSA, EP Carillo Cigars, Felipe Gregario Cigars, Flor de Gonzalez Cigars, House of Oxford, Graycliff Cigars, Gurkha Cigars, IPCPR, La Flor Dominicana Cigars, Mederos Cigars, Miami Cigar, Mike's Cigars Distributors, Oliva Cigar (Miami), Padron Cigars, Puros Indios Cigars, Torano Cigars, and Xikar.
The event was a huge success and we look forward to the next FL Cigar Summit!