JIM BARFIELD: Committed To Making A Difference
By Dr. Jim Palermo, Editor-In-Chief // November 11, 2013
2013 CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIAN
ABOVE VIDEO: Jim Barfield has indeed made a difference here on the Space Coast. He is an Elder of the Horizon Point Church in Rockledge, the Board Chairman of the KLD Youth Foundation, sits on the Boards of Directors of Space Coast Volunteers In Medicine (SCVIM), Junior Achievement of the Space Coast, LEAD Brevard and Jess Parrish Foundation, is an officer and Board Member of the Economic Development Commission (EDC), and Chairman of the EDC Space Coast Defense Alliance.
Fifty-plus year resident of Brevard County, Jim Barfield, built a business from scratch, which is recognized as one of the largest military medical services companies in the country.
Since 2004 Luke & Associates has been contracting with military installations around the world to provide high quality physicians, dentists, nurses and other health care personnel, and in 2012 was recognized as No. 22 on Inc. Magazine’s Inaugural Hire Power Awards list as one of the top 100 job producing companies in the United States.
Jim points to situations in his teen years and the subsequent success of Luke & Associates as catalysts for his passion and commitment for personally making a difference in the lives of others in his community.
During his mother’s long and ultimately losing battle with cancer, Jim was moved and inspired by the way his community rallied around his family, helping in a multitude of ways during her illness and after her death.
“I made a solemn promise to myself then that I, too, would commit to making a difference in others’ lives,” said Barfield.
He has made good on that promise through both Luke & Associates’ philanthropic generosity and focus on community volunteering, and the personal time and talent that he has dedicated to so many causes here on the Space Coast.
“The fact that there are such a multitude of worthwhile humanitarian organizations in our community creates a dilemma related to which ones to choose to support and actively engage in,” Barfield said.
“Anyone can write a check for a good cause, but not everyone can engage in a meaningful way and identify what personal strengths and influence can be brought to bear as a force for an organization to make a real difference in peoples’ lives.”
“Active involvement is constrained primarily by time, so I have focused on organizations that target family, health, children and leadership.”
He has applied his Bachelors of Science degree in environmental health from East Tennessee State University, Masters degree in Health Policy and Management from the University of South Florida, and experience as CEO of Luke & Associates to his humanitarian work, of which he said, “Anyone can write a check for a good cause, but not everyone can engage in a meaningful way and identify what personal strengths and influence can be brought to bear as a force for an organization to make a real difference in peoples’ lives.”
KIDS, HEALTHCARE PRIORITY
Barfield has indeed made a difference here on the Space Coast. He is an Elder of the Horizon Point Church in Rockledge, the Board Chairman of the KLD Youth Foundation, sits on the Boards of Directors of Space Coast Volunteers In Medicine (SCVIM), Junior Achievement of the Space Coast, LEAD Brevard and Jess Parrish Foundation, is an officer and Board Member of the Economic Development Commission (EDC), and Chairman of the EDC Space Coast Defense Alliance.
When asked about his most gratifying community involvement, Barfield again points to his priorities of health and children through SCVIM and KLD.
His commitment to and support of SCVIM is celebrated vociferously by SCVIM’s former Executive Director and Clinic Co-Founder, Paul Ringenberger and the clinic staff.
When asked about Barfield’s contribution to the clinic he said, “As a charter member of our board, Jim was involved with SCVIM well before the opening of the clinic, and was vital to our initial and now to our ongoing success through his diligent work behind the scenes to help us build our infrastructure and enlist both philanthropic and professional community support.”
SCVIM fills a major void in our community health.
“There is a serious need for healthcare for those who cannot afford health insurance and health care, and SCVIM is a program where medical providers volunteer their time and talent to make a difference in individuals’ lives,” Barfield said.
His wife, Darlene, volunteers her time and talent at the clinic as an OB/GYN Nurse Practitioner, and is also very involved with KLD.
“God put us on this earth for a purpose. You just have to know when it’s time to act and GO DO IT!”
KLD holds a special place in Barfield’s heart and mind. Referring to the transformations in the children with learning disabilities who have completed the KLD program, he said, “The commitment to the kids at KLD brings all of the little pieces together to accomplish some amazing things.”
Summing up his approach to “paying it forward,” Barfield says, “God put us on this earth for a purpose. You just have to know when it’s time to act and GO DO IT!”
ABOUT THE 2013 CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIAN AWARDS
The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards were created to recognize outstanding individuals and organizations that dedicate their Time, Talent or Treasure to help people in need locally – and around the world.
This year, more than 30 deserving humanitarians will be honored during the Gala, which will be held Thursday, Nov. 7 at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, with the festivities beginning at 6 p.m.
“Over the years, our editorial team has had the distinct honor and pleasure of identifying and featuring the many members of our community who give back so much and are dedicated to reaching out and helping others, here and throughout the world, in a multitude of ways,” said Maverick Multimedia Editor-In-Chief Dr. Jim Palermo.
“We remain firmly committed to identifying and telling those stories and providing a timely media platform to recognize Space Coast and Central Florida residents’ altruistic contributions on a regular basis in our magazines, as well as SpaceCoastDaily.com,” said Dr. Palermo.
This inspiring and compelling event is sponsored by Brighthouse Networks, Health First, Brevard Physicians Network, MPAC ACO, Community Credit Union, Knudson Brain & Spine Law Injury Office, Florida Pain, Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine, CentralFloridaMedicine.com and SpaceCoastDaily.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION or to make a reservation to attend the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards Gala call 321-615-8111 or e-mail SpaceCoastMedicine@gmail.com.