Westerville Chamber taps Tom Bernardo ’12 Business Person of Year
The Westerville Area Chamber of Commerce introduced Tom Bernardo, owner of Giammarco’s Pizza & Pasta, as the 2012 Business Person of the Year. Tom is being recognized for his commitment to the thriving Westerville area community, personal business accomplishments and his outstanding community involvement. The Westerville area is proud to have a fine family-run establishment like Giammarco’s Pizza & Pasta.
“I left a long corporate career and needed to make a decision in life as to what I was going to do. I spent many years in New York, New Jersey, Chicago and all over the country, but Westerville has always been home,” Bernardo said. “I was born and raised here. Being recognized by your home town, friends, family, neighbors and the overall community provide an overwhelming feeling of pride and joy that is hard to describe.”
Bernardo has been a valuable member of the Westerville Area Chamber of Commerce since 1999. Tom has opened his doors to host numerous Chamber functions such as Strategic Planning workshops along with several Young Professionals events. In addition to his involvement with the Chamber, Tom is a founding and active member and former Chairman of the Genoa Township Business Association and current Senior Vice President of Franchise Sales and Development for Harris Research, Inc. (Nashville, Tennessee). He is also heavily involved in the community through the Westerville Area Resource Ministry (WARM) and all Westerville City Schools.
“Tom employs over 50 people and offers many high school and college students an opportunity to gain real-life customer service, providing many young adults with their first paying job. Tom also gives back to the community as Giammarco’s sponsors and supports many sports programs and youth teams,” Rick Rano, RE/MAX Affiliates and Selection Committee Member, said.
Other activities Bernardo is involved with include the following: an active coach for the Junior Football League of Westerville and i9 Sports League, member of the Cornell University Alumni Varsity Football Board of Directors and Board Member for the Parma Panthers Football Team (Parma, Italy).
“Tommy Bernardo is one of the hardest working people I know. He has to be, he owns a restaurant,” David Bianconi, Owner of Bel Lago Waterfront Dining, said. “From first-hand experience, Tommy knows how to treat his customers and employees alike. He is well liked and even more importantly, respected. He is a credit to the Westerville Community and I am proud to call Tommy a friend.”
Bernardo lives in Westerville with his wife Marianela, daughters Sabrina and Samantha and sons Lance and Thomas. He is a graduate of Westerville North High School and Cornell University.
“Winning this award makes my wife and I feel like we were right! Westerville and Genoa Township appreciate and support our dream. That validation is what is most satisfying. It shows that when you base a decision on providing a great experience and great food and give back to the community, people will support you,” he said . “It proves that you can launch a dream and build a business on the strength of the community and the support of great neighbors. I am very proud to be a part of this community and am very honored for my wife and for the entire Giammarco’s staff to have received this award.
This year’s Business Person of the Year Award finalists included Connie Emerson, Concord Counseling Services; Polly Clavijo, Revolution Group; and Jason Carpenter, Environmental Pest Management.
Join your Chamber in honoring the Business Person of the Year, Award Finalists and a 2012 Year in Review at the Annual Dinner and Business Person of the Year Award Presentation on Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 5:30 p.m. at the Hilton Columbus Polaris, 8700 Lyra Drive, Westerville.
The cost to attend the Annual Dinner and Business Person of the Year Award Presentation is $40 per person OR $400 for a corporate table of 10 (corporate table includes table signage and program listing). The registration deadline is today, Thursday, January 17.
Thanks to our sponsors: Presenting, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield; Chairman’s Awards, OhioHealth; and Business Person of the Year, Associated Insurance Agencies.
For information about this event or other services of the Chamber of Commerce, contact the office at 614–882-8917 or visit < www.westervillechamber.com >.
Other upcoming Chamber events include: Women in Business Luncheon, featuring “Bring Your Principles to Work”, with Jane Grote Abell, Chairman of the Board and Owner of Donatos Pizza, Wednesday, January 16 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Embassy Suites Hotel, 2700 Corporate Exchange Drive; Business After Hours, Thursday, January 17 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Brookdale Senior Living, 6377 Cooper Road); Business After Hours, Thursday, February 21 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at HCR ManorCare Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, 140 Old County Line Road); and Chamber University, featuring a Small Business 101 Panel Discussion on February 13 from 8:00 to 9:15 a.m. at the Chamber Office, 99 Commerce Park Drive.
The Westerville Area Chamber of Commerce provides community leadership and advocacy on behalf of its members. Comprised of over 640 individuals and businesses, the Chamber has served the business community for over 40 years.