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Two Boca businesswoman inspire Junior Achievement

One day she was newly arrived in America, walking to class in the bitter cold. Years later, Marta Batmasian shared her entrepreneurial success story as a Junior Achievement honoree.

“This country has given me opportunity. This was given to us because of America,” Investments Limited owner with her husband James said at JA’s eighth annual Light Up the Night benefit.

Born in Istanbul, Turkey, Batmasian immigrated for higher education, presenting sponsor, Horizon Bank senior v.p. Jeni Chokron said. “Together with Jim…they’re the largest landowners in Boca Raton. And Marta has sat on 25 boards to help reach the underserved.”

PROPEL, founded by the Batmasians in 2004, helps at-risk kids succeed in leadership and education. Board v.p. and last year’s JA honoree Ingrid Fulmer told Boca voice, that’s why she nominated Batmasian.

Honoree Marta Batmasian accepts JA’s award

JA also honored Boca Magazine president and publisher Margaret Mary Shuff, who co-owns a publishing firm with her husband John.

“We appreciate these two amazing women during International Women’s Month,” said JA of South Florida president and CEO Laurie Sallarulo.

Three sets of JA student entrepreneurs from Broward schools sold their wares at  Wednesday’s reception at The Addison.

Mark Warren, whose family foundation was the title sponsor, asked attendees to get involved with JA to help prepare students for the business world. “Teaching is the essence. The idea is for us to take that wisdom and knowledge and pass it on,” he said.

Speakers also included JA board chair Tim Rubin and board member Carlos Alvarez. The JA World Huizenga Center is in Coconut Creek. But the chapter wants to have a larger presence in Boca, Sallarulo said.

By Marci Shatzman

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