Local Men Who Earn Our Admiration
By Michelle Cannon Epting
The definition of success is different for everyone. For some, success is not just measured in the wealth in a man’s bank account but in the legacy that is passed on in both his professional and personal life. As Father’s Day approaches, we stop to appreciate the men in our lives who have influenced the Space Coast community in several ways. Their roles involve hard work, dedication, devotion, and, above all else, love. The following five men have taken the qualities that make them successful professionals and applied them as father, demonstrating all the qualities of successful and admirable men.
Born and raised in Baker City, Oregon, Greg Ellingson was the oldest of five siblings. After high school, Greg attended the Air Force Academy, from which he graduated top of his class. After several years gaining program management and engineering experience in the Air Force, he relocated to Cape Canaveral in 2000 to work in the space industry and married his wife, Jen, a fellow Air Force officer.
Recognizing the potential of the Brevard County market, Greg began to invest in real estate and established Ellingson Properties with several partners in 2005. As the broker/owner, Greg ensures that the company addresses the technological needs of customers in a global real estate market. He emphasizes “hometown family values” and provides outstanding customer service. As one of the highest grossing brokers in Brevard County, he holds several certifications, and belongs to numerous real estate organizations.
Greg and his wife believe in instilling discipline, core values, and integrity in their children, values learned and strengthened by proud military service and successful entrepreneurial ventures. Greg sees a parent’s most important job as being a good role model. A self-proclaimed “bedtime book reader and snuggler” to 4-year-old Brooke and “terribly annoying tickle monster” to one and a half-year-old Grayson, Greg most values “the true wonderment that exists with [his] children” as they discover the world around them.
Dr. Mauricio Castellon
Dr. Mauricio Castellon grew up on the southwest coast of Florida in Port Charlotte. He received a medical degree from Ponce School of Medicine and became board-certified in plastic surgery and, seeking a warmer climate in 2001, opened the Aesthetic Plastic Surgery Center.
One of the most rewarding parts of his profession has been performing breast reconstruction surgeries for women after mastectomies. He also finds it gratifying to help his cosmetic patients feel better about themselves, with an emphasis on improvement rather than taking something away.
His biggest personal achievement is producing three great kids, 15-year-old Christian, 14-year-old Vanessa, and almost 4-year-old Juliana. “The biggest gift of life is influencing another human being to be great. My children are great human beings.” Dr. Castellon strives to teach his children to be good, responsible people, who appreciate how fortunate they are and want to give back. “We are all given special talents, and the greatest gift is to use them to help others.” He says a father is a provider, a leader, and a role model. He wants his children to try their best at whatever they attempt, to treat others as they wish to be treated, and to “do whatever they do with love and enthusiasm, and it will resonate wherever they go” in life.
Dr. Rajesh Gutta
Dr. Rajesh Gutta aims to be a role model to his children, demonstrating a balance between work and family. “A father should support and guide his children,” Dr. Gutta explains, “promoting personal development and self-confidence, and helping them to become well-rounded good people.”
Dr. Gutta is a board certified internist, specializing in emergency medicine. He attended the University of Michigan Medical School, where he met his wife, dermatologist Dr. Anita Saluja, graduating in 1996. He has served as President and Finance Chief for the HRMC Emergency Department Group. He is also a member of the newly formed Brevard Physician Associates, which will integrate specialists in emergency medicine, anesthesiologists, and radiologists in providing services to all Health First hospitals and seamless transitions to outpatient facilities.
Dr. Gutta and his wife have two children, 13-year-old Sajan and 10-year-old Priya. Sajan and Priya are quite accomplished in their own right. The two won their school spelling bees this past year and were the first brother/sister pair to compete at the county level. They have both also competed at the state chess tournament for their grade levels.
Jason Stanley grew up in Las Vegas while his father was in the Air Force. Jason’s father dabbled in new home building and remodeling, as Jason’s grandfather had before him. In the mid-1980s the family moved to Satellite Beach, where Jason grew up and graduated from high school. While studying business administration, the young entrepreneur started a successful commercial lawn service business and met an investor/mentor who led him to get his real estate broker license and general contractor license.
In 2003, Jason Stanley founded Stanley Homes, Inc., which has become one of the fastest growing new homebuilders in Volusia and Brevard Counties and specializes in affordable custom homes. The company has survived recessions and economic downturns because Jason practices a manageable growth strategy.
Jason is the father of three children, 17-year-old Bree, 15-year-old Gia, and 13-year-old Logan, whom he and his wife love raising on the Space Coast. The family enjoys the outdoors and traveling. While his children were younger, he coached them in almost every sport. As they have grown older, the children have received valuable lessons from their successful father, both in business and in life. Jason values giving his children a role model as a hard worker. “Success is not a product of luck; but a product of hard work.” He is proud of his children’s growth as individuals, and, indeed, they must be proud of his achievements as an entrepreneur and a father.
Dr. Ravi Rao
At the age of four, Dr. Ravi Rao’s engineer father brought his family from India to Chicago in pursuit of the American dream. His parents stressed the importance of education and hard work to their seven children. Dr. Rao graduated from Northwestern University in Chicago, earning his bachelor’s in science and his medical degree. He became a board certified nuclear cardiologist and interventional cardiologist.
Recognizing a need for exceptional cardiac and vascular care in the southern Volusia County and northern Brevard County region, Dr. Rao relocated to the Space Coast. He established Heart Care Centers of Florida in Titusville, where patients can receive comprehensive care in one site, which Dr. Rao believes is the future of interventional cardiology.
Family has always been a large part of Dr. Rao’s life. He and his wife have two daughters, 14-year-old Shanti and 12-year-old Meera. As a father, Dr. Rao emphasizes education and the importance of a sound mind and sound body. His girls are active in golf and tennis, and he spends weekends watching them play. At night, after a long day caring for patients, Dr. Rao revisits middle/high school as he helps his daughters with school projects and homework. “I work very hard so my kids can enjoy their lives. I love my career and my family; it’s a balance. I want my kids to be good people.” With Dr. Rao as an example, it is no doubt that this will come true.