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MIAMI-The Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce has awarded its 2002 Sand in My Shoe Award to real estate developer Armando Codina for his numerous contributions to the civic, social and development life of South Florida since 1980 when he started Codina Group Inc. in suburban Coral Gables, FL.

The award will be presented at a dinner on Feb. 8, 2003 at the Hotel Inter-Continental, 100 Chopin Plaza in Miami.

Codina has served as co-chairman of the Community Partnership for the Homeless as well as for We Will Rebuild and was the founding chairman of the Florida International University Board of Trustees.

He has also chaired the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce. He is on the boards of AMR, BellSouth, FPL Group and General Motors.

“I typically shy away from awards, but the Chamber of Commerce is a really special organization,” Codina tells Globest.com. “I believe that my contributions to the community are my duty and obligation.”

Codina, 56, was born in Havana and came to the United States in 1960. He was educated at Jacksonville University, Jacksonville, FL, where he began his entrepreneurial career delivering birthday cakes to fellow students, according to an Entrepreneur Hall of Fame Web site.

Codina was inducted in the Hall of Fame in 1995.

Among Codina Group’s larger ongoing projects are the 205-acre Beacon Center in West Dade county, a planned 4.5 million-sf mixed-use venture that will encompass office, retail and other commercial endeavors; and Deering Bay Yacht & Country Club, a 286-unit luxury residential bayfront community in South Dade county.

The Chamber established the Sand in My Shoes Award in 1981. Past recipients include Alvah Chapman Jr., the late publisher of The Miami Herald, 1983; Bill Colson, 1986; M. Anthony Burns, chairman, Ryder Inc., 1991; Tad Foote, 2000; and the late Leonard Miller and his wife, Susan Miller, of Lennar Partners.

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