Simon's Cares Blog

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Simon's Cares Blog: Showcasing Simon's Community Involvement

Ambassadors to Central New York Businesses


One of the many great aspects of our membership with CenterState CEO in Central New York is the Ambassador Program in which our local sales executives participate. CenterState CEO is a regional business leadership organization, chamber of commerce, and economic development strategist based in Syracuse, New York. Members of the Ambassador Committee attend a short monthly organizational meeting and then act as “goodwill” ambassadors who provide recognition and appreciation for local businesses. They attend special events and present a certificate of recognition for grand openings, ribbon cuttings, special events, and more. According to CenterState CEO’s Director of Member Services, Sharon Abert, “It’s a great opportunity to be able to celebrate businesses in our region who are deserving of recognition for all kinds of success. I, as well as the volunteers on the CenterState CEO Ambassador committee, are passionate about the recognition provided. It means an awful lot to a business owner or manager to have a group of these volunteers come in and extend congratulations, present a certificate and take a picture for an upcoming newsletter.”

David Capria, an Ambassador from Simon’s Agency,enjoys volunteering. “I get to meet the people who are investing in our community. These people are the ones who have a vision and see the positives of owning and operating a business in Central New York,” he says. Furthermore his colleague at Simon’s who is new to the area, adds, “I attend these functions because they allow me to have an understanding of what types of businesses are opening or celebrating their longevity and growth in this community. Plus, it’s always nice to see someone achieving success after going after an enormous goal like owning their own business.”

For one appreciative local business owner, Syracuse Poster’s Luke Tremaine, this means the world to him and his business’s prospects. “We appreciate the support the ambassadors showed our business and we are so grateful for the many contacts we made from it,” he says. Similarly Jamie Dennis, General Manager at the Jefferson Clinton Hotel echoes the same appreciation, “We were honored to have them join us and thrilled to be included in their newsletter. Not only were we included on their online presence but several Ambassador’s tweeted about the event, which provided an even greater reach.” 

The Ambassadors stopped by this morning to congratulate us on our #1 ranking on Tripadvisor!

— Jefferson Clinton (@TheJCHotel) March 13, 2015

@SyracusePosters opening with $10 posters in 6 min-crazy!!!

— Matt Capogreco (@mattcap76) March 10, 2015

In addition to the attention paid in person by the Ambassadors, social media has played an increasingly important role in extending the reach of these celebrations. Recognizing social media as an important component to these events, Sarah Roche, Communications Coordinator for CenterState CEO, created a style sheet and registered a hashtag (#CEOAmbassadors) to assist in consolidating and branding the program as a whole and to help volunteers coordinate their messages. “The CenterState CEO Ambassadors are a huge asset to the community. They welcome, celebrate and encourage business in our region. As we increase the digital footprint of CenterState CEO, it made perfect sense to empower people who were already creating an impact and posting to social media,” she says.

Ambassadors have celebrated 62 businesses through the first half of 2015 and the publicity gained for these businesses throughout CenterState CEO media, and shared by Ambassadors across Twitter and Facebook, provides a wealth of free exposure they might not otherwise receive. For committee members the opportunity to meet and network with fellow volunteers as well as recipient businesses makes the effort all the more worthwhile. For Simon’s it’s both an honor and a privilege to participate in this program and offers our sales staff a unique blend of recognizing local achievement and networking with local business leaders.

For more information or to become a volunteer, please contact Sharon Abert at or visit the CenterState CEO Get Involved web page.

Pictured above:  Manlius, NY - David Capria joins fellow CEO Ambassadors to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Cavalry Club on April 8, 2015.

Syracuse, NY - David Capria joins fellow CEO Ambassadors to celebrate the Jefferson Clinton Hotel's #1 Hotel Ranking on TripAdvisor for 2014 on March 13, 2015

Liverpool, NY - Chrissy Alexander and David Capria join fellow CEO Ambassadors to celebrating the grand opening of Runnings on May 15, 2015.


Syracuse, NY - David Capria joins fellow CEO Ambassadors to celebrate the 15th Anniversary of Avalon Document Services on May 26, 2015.

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