The Spadafora Family: Creating a Lasting Tribute
The Cecil and Ann Spadafora family has been a small business leader in the Indiana, Pennsylvania, community and region for many years. Their story began when they founded the original Colonial Motor Mart location in 1946. The garage was built on a commitment to provide excellent value and outstanding service with one simple goal in mind: total customer satisfaction.
Over the years, their growth in the community has afforded the opportunity to expand operations to include: #1 Colonial Toyota, also in Indiana, and #1 Colonial Chevrolet-Ford on Route 30 in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Cecil Spadafora was driven not only to run a successful auto dealership, but to live in a thriving community.
In 1972, Cecil, a 1935 Penn State graduate, concentrated his efforts on building Colonial Land, a family corporation, which operates Wyoming Hall (a private resident hall) and Meadow Lane Golf Course. That history of family ownership has not gone unrecognized.
The University of Pittsburgh Katz School of Business presented the Family Business of the Year Award to Cecil in 1999, and the IUP Center for Family Business honored him with the Distinguished Family Business Award in 2002. Both universities confer the awards to recognize outstanding family businesses and to celebrate the success of families in business and the benefits they bring to their communities, region and nation.
Cecil always stressed the importance of giving back—to his family and to the Indiana community. To create a family legacy, he set up the Cecil and Ann Spadafora Endowment, a scholarship that benefits players on the IUP football team, and the Cecil Spadafora Sr. Golf Invitational. Cecil and Ann's children, Chuck, W.H., Cecil Jr. (Skip) and Jo-Una have been supporting the scholarship and golf invitational for years and are now researching ways to continue the legacy through their estate planning.
Their children all echo the same sentiment when thinking of their parents. Jo-Una says, "My dad instilled a strong sense of responsibility to give back in all of us, and to create a lasting legacy on his and my mother's behalf. Although I have lived elsewhere for more than a few decades, I still maintain a very special bond and continuing sense of loyalty to my hometown."
When Chuck was inducted into the Indiana County Business Hall of Fame in 2017, he said this of his father, "I thank you for teaching us by example on how to respect the little guy as well as the big guy, on how to treat people with fairness and consistency and how to give back to the community and church. I also thank you for teaching us to care for our brothers and sisters and what you meant by 'it is so nice to be nice.'"
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