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The Short Version: Floridians who know they deserve a higher caliber partner than they’re finding in the online dating world can turn to the expertise of Sheryel Aschfort of South Florida Introductions. Sheryel and her team use diverse styles of matchmaking, an extensive database of personally vetted clients, and professional photography to help connect singles with the person they deserve. South Florida Introductions boasts more than 1,000 marriages in more than 26 years in the business, proving that the matchmaking service knows how to help people find love.
Sheryel Aschfort, the Director of South Florida Introductions, loves to tell the story of Scott, a client who decided — on a whim — to fill out a questionnaire on her website in hopes of finding the woman of his dreams.
As is routine, Sheryel first speaks with all potential clients who seek her advice to see if they are a good fit for her matchmaking agency. She likes to start by reviewing some of their information to get a feel for their personality. But Scott had a stunning reaction.
“He said, ‘Just stop right there. Throw that paper in the garbage,'” Sheryel said. “I asked him why, and he told me he didn’t think I could find who he was looking for if he couldn’t do it himself.”
Scott, a top executive at a national company with two masters degrees, often attended black-tie fundraisers and groundbreaking ceremonies — but that’s not who he really was, Scott told her.
“He told me how he likes to go to these functions, but then he spends four days riding a horse, an ATV, or climbing a mountain, and he needed a woman who could do all of those things,” she said.
Sheryel’s thoughts went to Veronica, a client whose husband had passed away. Veronica was a horse rider and owns a jewelry store. She was financially stable, ready to date, and just a year younger than Scott. Sheryel felt it was a perfect match — but Scott wasn’t so sure.
“I told him, ‘I have the girl for you,’ and he said, ‘Impossible.’ He told me he was traveling for the next six weeks, and if he was interested when he got back, he’d let me know. I said, ‘Fine, but in the meantime, I’m going to send you a link to your future wife’s pictures, so you know who you’re going to marry,'” Sheryel told us.
The next morning, Scott called. He had seen Veronica’s pictures and wanted to meet her. He signed up immediately as a client, and, six months later, the couple married at Veronica’s ranch.
“That’s why I’m still doing it,” Sheryel said. “You have your ups and downs helping people find love, but when that happens like that — and I have a thousand of those stories — it is incredibly fulfilling. I knew on the phone Scott was going to marry Veronica.”
For 26 years, Sheryel has relied on two critical traits to make good love connections for her clients. First, her memory is strong — so if there’s someone in her database who might be a match for you, she’ll remember. Second, she gets a good read on people.
“I figure people out. Everyone has two personalities: One personality goes to work, and the other personality is truly who they are,” she said. “The personality that goes to work needs to be the opposite of your partner, and your real personality needs to be the same. So when people say opposites attract, they’re correct, and when they say like-minded people need to be together, they’re also correct.”
She works with two other matchmakers, both of whom have been with her for years. Nina, who has worked with Sheryel for 25 years, makes matches based on hearts and souls, sometimes even using numerology and astrology. David, meanwhile, has been on the team for 11 years and relies on facts and logic to connect people.
“We make a pretty good team because we’re uniquely different, which is great,” she said.
Most of the singles Sheryel works with range from 35 to 75 years old, and they’re only matched with other clients.
“We interview every client, and that makes us unique. We’re member-to-member only. I will only fix you up with other paid members who have had a background check done and who I know as a person,” she said.
That process differentiates South Florida Introductions from other matchmaking services that often make a client pay a hefty price only to have the matchmaker go online or around town to find someone they hardly know. With Sheryel, each client goes through a criminal background check and has a personality and desire screening. If no one in her database fits your requirements, she won’t waste your time or money by bringing you on as a client.
“We’re a visual matchmaker, and that makes us more popular with men because men do not like going on blind dates.” — Sheryel Aschfort, Director of South Florida Introductions
Another feature that sets the organization apart is that it isn’t a blind date service. That’s important when clients are trying to find a partner who lives up to all of their expectations.
“We’re a visual matchmaker, and that makes us more popular with men because men do not like going on blind dates,” she said. “They like that they’re going to get the advice, and the structure and background, but they’re going to see the other person before they make a decision.”
The process is straightforward. Once you fill out a questionnaire online, you’ll meet with Sheryel so she can assess your personality. In the interview, she’ll ask you about the age range and most important characteristics you want in a potential partner. Among other things, she’ll ask detailed questions about the income level, education, and religion you want to see in a partner.
On the first meeting, she’ll pull 10 to 20 profiles of clients who meet your desires based on your description. But once she understands who you truly are, she’ll narrow that list to a select few.
“When I determine your personality, I will figure out the personality you need, and then I pull out a few people who I think would be a match for you,” she said. “Then, you get the feel of how this works.”
When you become a member, you’ll meet with Nina, who will also review and suggest matches based on her expertise. Then you’ll have a professional photo shoot to create the images that will be used in your profile.
“You’ll write a profile, and I will be your editor,” she said. “Then we go live and make selections. I’ll email you one to three people we think are a match, and, if you agree, we’ll set it up.”
Sheryel’s methods are successful, and sometimes she’ll have a premonition — like with Scott and Veronica. In those cases, when she knows that two people are meant to be together, the match often ends in marriage.
It also helps when her clients are realistic.
“About 99% of the time, people don’t end up with who they think they wanted. They’ll never be successful until they turn it over to us and let us help them meet the right person,” she said. “You are paying for expertise, advice, quality, and safety.”
To help more people find love, Sheryel is working on a book titled “Playing in the Right Sandbox.” Because if you’re not looking in the right place for the love you deserve, you’re just not going to find it, she said.
She’s also hoping to break into radio — perhaps with a podcast — to provide even more relationship advice. She said she believes that people need to prioritize their love lives over less essential endeavors.
“I don’t understand how people spend so much time, effort, and money on trips, travel, boats, cars, jewelry, and real estate. But when it comes to the person you might go to bed with for the rest of your life, it’s $30 a month on a dating website,” she said. “That’s an opposite priority situation. That’s going to change all of the other stuff anyway. When you put a good person in your life, it all changes. Invest in that, and everything will be good.”