Last week our community lost one of the most amazing , authentic and truly giving people who in only four short years in Florida clearly became known and loved by all who walked in his path.
I fondly called Jim Roque -“Mr. Sarasota.” Jim was everywhere, on many boards and committees and truly worked at each one. He worked so hard in his business and clients begged to come to him because instead of trying to sell, he worked diligently on building authentic and deep relationships with his clients, friends and everyone in the community.
I had the great opportunity to first meet Jim at my Rotary club and then he invited me to his walking group three years ago—which has now become a big part of my life and has led to many wonderful friendships and contacts and keeps building.
Jim truly lived every quality of being a true giver and someone that everyone wanted to be around and he is the epitome of who I look to when I think of the Ultimate Networker, Communicator and Connector.
- Jim had Charisma- you felt better about yourself being in his presence. He truly listened and learned in every conversation. I remember some of our talks during our Saturday morning five mile walks and he always listened and then would give me a compliment, a suggestion or idea and I knew each was extremely sincere and caring. Jim did this with everyone and he would leave that person feeling the same way when he walked away-feeling better about themselves. He knew how to draw someone out and his sense of humor and not taking himself so seriously made him even more charming.
- Jim was a Connector. He loved to create connections. As soon as he knew your interests and passions, he would always say– ” You need to meet so and so”. And then he would make the connection with a sincere introduction. I can count five new friends and business connections that I have made through Jim in the last few years. We are all grateful to Jim and think of him first whenever we connect.
- Jim had a ton of Composure. He was always able to put himself in the other person’s shoes and knew just the right thing to say- when and how with every person.
- Jim was Confident in a wonderful way- He had a combination of great eye contact , facial expressions and tone of voice so you truly knew that he was present and focused when he was in your company. Jim was fondly called ‘Big Jim’- and as we all said ‘ he truly was larger than life’. He had that presence that whenever he walked into the room or walking on the bridge, he was someone everyone wanted to be around and he made everyone feel good and was able to bring them into the conversation. Everyone felt good being around “Big Jim.”
- Jim was Credible– he was the Real Thing- authentic, articulate in his message and knew his stuff cold. I always learned so much from being in his company that I wanted to take notes on our walks.
There is so much more I could say about this wonderful man and most of all he was Kind. He lived as my dear father would say “always giving everyone you meet a smile and a handshake’- and Jim certainly did.
As our dear friend, Dan Bailey recently said about ‘Big Jim’- and he said it best:
“He is in Heaven going through registration and orientation, reuniting with loved ones and making friends with everyone within reach of his oversized arms.”
We miss you Jim and you will stay in our hearts forever.