Gaetano Gagliano – 100 years as a cultural trendsetter
Ten years ago I joined the ranks of St. Joseph. One of the things that struck me from the get-go was the culture, as it permeated everything. We’ve all heard the refrain “culture eats strategy for breakfast,” yet when you watch someone who truthfully embodies and emanates that philosophy, it is a thing to behold. Gaetano, the founder and patriarch of St. Joseph Communications was that particular person – a true believer in giving of one’s self. And it didn’t have to be complex, as the simple things mattered… case in point, well into his 90s, he would regularly walk into my office, espresso in hand, and wish me a good morning – now that’s culture.
Gaetano, who passed away last year at the ripe age of 98, was beyond doubt a cultural trendsetter and remarkable man. He believed that “on the right foundation you can build anything you want,” and as such, began his company based on genuine values and guiding principles:
- Understanding our customer’s needs and delivering upon them
- Fostering individual initiative, mutual respect, and personal dignity
- Promoting and supporting a culture of continuous learning
- Replenishing the environment upon which our business and quality of life depend
- Reinvesting in our business to fund future growth, value, and innovation
- Giving back to the communities in which we live and work – through the arts, volunteerism, and most importantly – family
It goes without saying, that starting a business from humble beginnings (as a newly landed immigrant from Sicily, in the basement of his Toronto home), to emerging as an Order of Canada recipient with a leading communications company – now beyond its 60th year – is a feat in and of itself. But to do it all, while bringing up 10 children and living by a code based on continually giving of one’s self is extraordinary. His enduring presence reminds us to celebrate family, business, community and the diversity of the world around us. As Tony Gagliano, his son and our CEO puts it, “In a world in which innovation is crucial to success, it has been our experience that taking the road less traveled often leads to the most exciting destinations.”
Gaetano, you were through and through a trailblazer, who clearly took the road less traveled. You are truly admired, and your legacy lives on.
Michael Chase, CMO
St. Joseph Communications
Video Tribute: His Legacy Lives On With Us
August 24th marked a special day: the 100th anniversary of the birth of our Founder, Gaetano Gagliano. His story emphasizes it is possible at any age, and under any life circumstances, to embark on a new journey and realize a dream. Watch our Centennial Anniversary Tribute video for his amazing life story and inspiring legacy.
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