Finalists Named for KUA Board

KISSIMMEE, Fla., May 3, 2018 – The Kissimmee Utility Authority board of directors on Wednesday interviewed five applicants to fill an upcoming vacancy on the five-member volunteer utility board. A sixth candidate was not able to participate in a scheduled interview.

The outgoing director, Ethel Urbina, has served one term on the board and is eligible for reappointment.

Per the guidance of the Kissimmee City Commission, the board narrowed the list to three recommended applicants whose names have been sent to the commission for a second round of interviews and final appointment on June 5.

The recommended applicants are:

– L. ASHLEY COKE, a two-year resident of Kissimmee and principal of Boes Financial Services, Inc. in Kissimmee. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of the West Indies and an MBA degree from the NYU Stern School of Business.

– JERRY GEMSKIE, a retired foreman with Associated Roofers in Chicago, Illinois. He is a 22-year resident of Kissimmee and previously served 10 years as a Kissimmee City Commissioner. Gemskie served for several years as chairman of Kissimmee’s Relay for Life fundraising event to benefit the American Cancer Society.

– ETHEL URBINA is a real estate broker and owner of Mercedes Investments, LLC in Kissimmee. A resident of Kissimmee for the past 15 years, she is a former AT&T executive with service in the U.S., Nicaragua and Puerto Rico. Urbina has served on the utility board since 2013.

The candidate appointed by the city commission will be sworn in at the board’s October meeting.

Founded in 1901, KUA ( is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility powering 74,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.