Sandy Hostetter with her Alumnus of the Year Award.

Financial services expert named Bergstrom Center’s Alumnus of the Year

ORLANDO, Fla. – Sandy Hostetter was honored as the 2019 Kelley A. Bergstrom Real Estate Center’s Alumnus of the Year at its annual Trends & Strategies Conference at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando. She is the second female recipient of the award.

Hostetter is Central Florida Market President at SunTrust Bank. She has over 35 years of experience in the financial services industry. Prior to joining SunTrust, Hostetter was President of Valley National Bank for 16 years, Chief Executive Officer of Florida Community Partners for seven years and Vice President of Corporate Banking for Barnett Bank of Central Florida from 1982-1992.

“It is an amazing honor to be named Alumnus of the Year,” Hostetter said. “I have served on [the Bergstrom Center’s Real Estate Advisory] board for over 15 years and have enjoyed every minute of it. I love interfacing and mentoring the students and watching them develop into seasoned professionals.

“Over the years, I have literally honed my own real estate skills from attending the [Trends Conference] breakout sessions, listening to the speakers and networking with peers throughout Florida. We attract the best of the best when it comes to real estate, representing all sectors and it’s just one of the most meaningful things I do every year.”

Hostetter received her bachelor’s degree in marketing from Warrington in 1981 and an MBA from Rollins College. She is the Chairwoman of the Bergstrom Center’s Real Estate Advisory Board, previously co-chaired the university’s Florida Tomorrow Campaign and has been involved with the Trends Conference for many years.

“This year was even more special because I also became good friends with the Conference Committee who worked tirelessly to put on another outstanding Trends Conference,” she said. “Steve Messing, Ernest Johnson and Jerry Gisclair worked incredibly hard to put together a program that was relevant, educational and forward looking. And for every hour we put in, the [Bergstrom Center] staff put in no less than 15. It’s a great partnership.”

From left: Dr. David Ling, Nikki Wagner, Tim Becker, Sandy Hostetter, Dr. Wayne Archer, Kelley Bergstrom and Steve Messing.

From left: Dr. David Ling, Nikki Wagner, Tim Becker, Sandy Hostetter, Dr. Wayne Archer, Kelley Bergstrom and Steve Messing.

Hostetter is particularly proud to be involved with the Bergstrom Center because of its ability to help students succeed in the real estate industry.

“This center is an incredible gift to the University of Florida and I, along with many others, will be eternally grateful to Kelley for making the establishment of the center a reality,” Hostetter said. “In the last 10 years we accomplished many things, most importantly, that we are the number one public university MSRE program and that’s an accomplishment.

“We have sponsored hundreds of students with scholarship dollars, without which, many of the students wouldn’t have been able to attend. And hopefully, we’ve showcased some opportunities in which developers can do well and do good at the same time. The LIFT Orlando project is a fine example of that kind of project which is not only providing completely restored living units, but is also transformational to the lives of the residents of West Lakes.”

Hostetter has long been recognized for her career and community service. She formerly served as the Board Chair of the Central Florida YMCA Metro Board and is still an active member of their Board and Executive Committee. She is Past Chair of the Mennello Museum of American Art Friends Board and Past Chair of the Winter Park Health Foundation.

She has also served on the Foundation for Foster Children Board and is Past Chair of the 2010-2011 Heart of Florida United Way Board Campaign and continues to serve on the United Way Board of Directors. She also serves on the Florida Hospital Board and the Florida Citrus Sports Board. She is a founding member of LIFT Orlando and serves on their Board as the Housing Committee Chair.  Recently, she was added to the boards of Florida Citrus Sports and 4Roots Farm.

In 2008, Hostetter was named Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser of the Year by the Central Florida Association of Fundraising Professionals for her work on the YMCA Scholarship campaign. She was named Central Florida Woman of the Year by the Women’s Executive Council in 2011. In 2012, the Orlando Business Journal presented her with the prestigious Publisher’s Award, and in 2013 she won the coveted Athena International Leadership Award in recognition of her contribution to the Central Florida community.

In 2016 Onyx Magazine named her as one of its Women on the Move. In 2017, the I4 Business Magazine presented her with the prestigious Women’s Inspired Leadership Spirit of Advocacy award. The American Business Association Foundation also recognized her as a finalist for the 2017 George Bailey Distinguished Service award for her commitment and service in her community.

Hostetter will join 14 other individuals that have also been named Alumnus of the Year. The Bergstrom Center’s Alumnus of the Year award is given to a UF graduate who has made an impactful and sustained contribution to Real Estate education at the University of Florida. All recipients are friends of the Center who have gone above and beyond to grow the presence of UF’s Real Estate program. Read more about the Bergstrom Center Alumnus of the Year.