After half-century of success and support, Guglielmo steps down at Rome Chamber
ROME — After 50 years of service, William “Bill” K. Guglielmo has retired as president of the Rome Area Chamber of Commerce.
Guglielmo began his career at the chamber in February 1973 during the Richard Nixon administration. He earned the role as president of the chamber in 1996, and has led the Rome Chamber since.
Guglielmo was born in Rome and graduated from Rome Free Academy in 1967. He earned a bachelor’s of science degree in management science from the University of Buffalo, and an associate of applied science degree in business administration from SUNY Morrisville.
He began as a staff assistant with the Rome Chamber in 1973. At the time, the chamber was located on the second floor of the Niagara Mohawk Building at 127 W. Liberty St. Guglielmo worked his way up to director of Government Affairs & Membership Development, administrator, executive vice-president and then president in 1996.
For much of the past half-century, he was synonymous with business development in the Copper City; a staunch advocate for the community and its business sector.
“During my 50-year career with the chamber, I thoroughly enjoyed working with the dedicated membership who volunteered their time, talent and resources, offering programs to promote business opportunities and encourage economic growth in Rome and the region,” wrote Guglielmo in a letter to the chamber’s Executive Board announcing his retirement.
“It was an honor and a privilege to work alongside so many creative, dedicated, and sincere people. I will miss all of them dearly, and with very fond remembrances,” he continued. “Thank you for the opportunity to play a part in successfully advocating for the Rome business community.”
John Calabrese, current chamber chairman of the board, said Guglielmo’s life work has been the Rome Area Chamber of Commerce “and making Rome a better place to live, work and raise a family.”
“He is a pillar in the Rome community and rest assured, any significant advancement that we have experienced in our community, Bill Guglielmo played a role in that advancement, in a way only Bill can,” Calabrese said.
“All that have worked with Bill have been inspired by him. Our Executive Committee, board and staff, celebrate Bill today, and congratulate him on his retirement and distinguished career as the president and leader of our Chamber of Commerce,” he added.
Mayor Jacqueline M. Izzo recalled memories of working with Guglielmo as a staff assistant with the Rome Chamber.
“Bill Guglielmo is one of my greatest friends in the City of Rome, and one of my first jobs out of college was working as a staff assistant at the chamber, and Bill was already there,” Izzo remembered. “We became great friends, and that friendship has continued for about 40 years.”
“I don’t have enough good things to say about Bill. He’s lead the chamber very well. He’s been a big part of this community for his entire life, and especially in his professional life,” the mayor said. “I don’t know if anyone else has been involved in every aspect of the community as Bill has been. Bill has done many things to help people and be a champion of the community.”
The mayor said Guglielmo also played a great role in supporting businesses and promoting economic growth in the city.
Rome businesses, “Couldn’t have had a better advocate,” said Izzo. “I hope he and his wife can enjoy some retirement. Bill has always been an integral part of Honor America Days and was part of all the activities, and we’ll miss him being out there for the parade and concert. There’s not a better person, or gentleman, than Bill Guglielmo.”
Rome Area Chamber of Commerce was incorporated in 1912 for the purpose of actively working to protect the commercial interests of the city and foster its growth. with no government funding, the chamber is completely independent and able to act quickly on matters of concern to the business community.
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