Title: President of Cabbage Key and Tarpon Lodge
Organization: Tarpon Lodge
Committee Position: Member
Born in High Point, North Carolina in 1973, Robert “Rob” Wells moved to Cabbage Key, Florida in 1976 when his parents, Rob and Phyllis Wells, purchased the Cabbage Key Island and business. Cabbage Key, an island off the coast of Southwest Florida, offered a unique and wondrous experience to Rob and his family.
At the time, Cabbage Key had few creature comforts and no electricity, cars or phone service, and Rob learned the benefit of hard work, an appreciation for nature, and the importance of being resourceful and problem-solving. The island and its surrounding waterways were Rob’s neighborhood. He learned to drive a boat before driving a car, and the early days were spent working at the Cabbage Key Restaurant and boating back and forth to school.
After graduating from the University of Florida with a major in Finance in 1996, Rob worked for PaineWebber on the SE Region Municipal Bond trading desk in Orlando before moving to New York City to continue working in bonds for the company. While Rob loved city life and the finance industry, the family business and Florida lifestyle were calling his name.
In 2001, Rob moved home to manage Cabbage Key and The Tarpon Lodge on Pine Island, FL. Shortly after moving back to Southwest Florida, his then girlfriend and now wife, Jessica, moved down to Fort Myers where they have lived since 2003. Rob and Jessica have two teenage daughters, Julia and Caroline.
In addition to running the family business with his parents and brother, Ken, Rob has also been active in a number of local philanthropic and community organizations including The Lee County Tourism Development Council, FGCU Board of Directors, Useppa Island Board of Governors, Bridgeless Islands Task Force, Edison & Ford Winter Estates, Southwest Capital Board among others. In his spare time, Rob and his family love to boat, travel and cheer on the Florida Gators.