As Pamela celebrates nearly three decades with Home-Tech, the Board Members promoted her to the role of President. “Pam knows the ins and outs of every department in this company and has helped this company grow through her hard work and dedication,” states board member and Training Manager Brian Schraufnagl. “I couldn’t think of anyone better suited for the role of President.”
From Ohio Girl to Home-Tech Executive
Thirty-eight years ago, she arrived in Fort Myers from Akron, Ohio with her husband, who happened to be the brother of Home-Tech Founder & CEO, Steve Marino.
“I had never been to Florida; I hadn’t even been on an airplane,” she says, “but, the minute we debarked down the steps of the plane at Page Field and I got a whiff of the warm tropical air – I knew that this was where I was supposed to be.” Pamela was only 19-years old at the time. Now as the President for Home-Tech and a Board member, she laughs at the memory, “I never imagined I’d come this far, doing something I absolutely love.”
Soon after the move, her husband urged her to join him working at Home-Tech, and she found herself in a back office, inputting invoices and trying to learn all she could about the appliance and AC business. Soon, Pamela and her husband expanded the business to Port Charlotte. The couple relocated to Charlotte County with their two young sons and Pamela remembers working out of a tiny office on a shoestring budget.
Charlotte County Location
“I did everything – from Service Agreements, sales, the financials, all of it,” she remembers. “We had a little window air conditioning unit and no hot water for the first few years and we used the dryer top to hold the copier and I stored my paper supplies in the dryer. If the kids were sick, I’d just bring them to work. I’d have a computer in front of me, a phone in my ear, and a kid on my lap. It was gratifying though,” Pamela says, “We built it, with care, one customer at a time. Whenever I got a service call, I’d imagine it was my mom or dad calling,” says Pamela. “I treated my customers the way I’d want someone to treat my parents. A high level of customer service is so important to me.”
Pamela and her husband amicably split and she stuck with Home-Tech. Pamela returned to the Fort Myers office as Assistant Service Manager and it was a far cry from her Charlotte County duties. “Home-Tech grew quickly and I grew along with it,” she says. From there she became the Service Operations Manager, Chief Operations Officer, and now the President of Home-Tech.
Passing the Baton
Steve Marino, who previously held the role of President and is retaining the position of CEO, said about Pamela, “In the past 30 years Pam Marino has learned all the many stages and facets necessary to provide convenient in-home service. No one, I mean NO ONE, knows and understands in-home service like Pam Marino. Like any serious business, promotions come by your talent and skills. The fact is, she earned it the old fashion way, sweat and long hours.”
There have been so many improvements to our internal operational systems. I remember in the old days when we hand wrote call tickets and parts orders. The only marketing we did back then was the phone book, newspaper ads, radio and TV so that’s really changed with the internet and Google advertising. The company parties and picnics were so small with a handful of people who were very close friends. Now at the Home-Tech Christmas party we’ll have 300 people attending. It’s more of a struggle now to know all of the employees. The only reason I know the new technicians is that I’m on the Board that helps select them.
Pamela looks back at 1990 again, “I was actually crying the first day I came to work with the thought of leaving my kids,” she says. “But, my mother always told me that I had my dad’s work ethic.” Pamela’s dad worked for Gillette in Ohio and her mother told her that she’s just like him – in love with her work. “When I think of that,” says Pamela, “it makes me smile because my dad is my hero.”
In Love Too with Community Service
If Pam looks familiar to you it may be because you’ve seen her at various community events. Her passion is the Partners for Breast Cancer Care. Partners for Breast Cancer Care is a non profit who provides breast health care to under-served clients in Lee, Collier, Glades, Charlotte and Hendry counties at no cost to them. Pamela is currently the Vice President and helps organize many fundraising events. She also attends many of the charity events that Home-Tech sponsors annually. She’s known for diving in wherever her heart calls her.
Long Friendships At Home-Tech
“Working with friends for 29 years has been really nice and is not something that everyone gets to experience,” Pamela recounts. “The camaraderie of so many years together has built us into such a great team. We jump through hoops to make sure we are providing the best possible experience for our customers.”
From all of your friends at Home-Tech, congratulations!