This month, 26 years ago, I’m sitting in my little office on Rt. 6 in Willoughby Hills when a lady walked in and asked me to join her in publishing an Italian American newspaper. I told her I would, provided I control all the copy/editorial and she handle all the ad pitches and business.
She said no and as she walked out, I said to this lady, “Kathy, you aren’t even Italian.” She replied, “I know, I’m divorced from one.” As time passed, I mentioned to friends what she had pitched to me. Out of the blue came the news, Kathy had passed away. Sometime later, friends urged me to “take a shot” and publish such a newspaper. A couple of friends and I, including a retired Cleveland policeman, went ahead and La Gazzetta Italiana was born.
Right at the onset, several Italian businesses jumped on board as advertisers. I looked back to the early 1990s and checked the ad records and there was Frato Roll-off Containers, Miceli’s, Orlando Baking, Gino’s Jewelers, Climaco, Climaco, Lefkowitz, Garofoli Law Firm, Nature Stone, Grande’s Italian Cuisine, DiMarco Mechanical, DiCicco Funeral Home, Paul Paratto of (then) Smythe, Cramer, DS Custom Van/Auto Body, Frank Fantozzi of Planned Financial, Alesci’s, Ron Taddeo, M.D., Davitino’s, Pier W, DiStefanos, and all of the summertime festivals, Little Italy Feast, Warren, Youngstown, Canton, and Akron. Of course, nothing stays the same. Advertisers come and go and business changes.
A few years back, PAS Publishing of Hudson, OH “made an offer I couldn’t refuse” and bought La Gazzetta. With new people, new ideas, and new and old advertisers, La Gazzetta remains the respected voice for information in our Italian American community and is distributed and read nationwide. In these ever-changing email, Twitter, Facebook, and website times, the “best is yet to come.” Thank you, one and all. “Never take sides against the family,” continue to support La Gazzetta Italiana.