April 18, 2024

Businessman and philanthropist Vito John Germinario, was recently honored by The Lido Civic Club of Washington, DC, at its 89th Annual Past Presidents Night Gala, as the 2018 Man of the Year.

Germinario, is the President and Co-owner of GPR, Inc., a commercial glazing company and LGV Group LLC, a commercial real estate development company.  He is also the CEO of Make-A-Wish Foundation, Mid-Atlantic, and serves on the board of a number of non-profits including on the National Museum of American Religion, the Excel Academy for girls in Washington, and St. Peter Preparatory school among others.

In presenting the award, Lido President Thomas  Regnante said that “It is our greatest honor to name Vito as the 2018 Lido Civic Club Man of the Year because he embodies the very spirit of being an accomplished Italian American. Vito is an astute business executive with the warmth and heart of gold of everyone’s favorite Uncle. He embodies the very spirit of this esteemed award.”

Vito and Kristi Germinario

In accepting the award, a clearly emotional Germinario said that being recognized by the Lido Civic Club would have been very special to his late parents. He said he “humbly” accepted the award “on behalf of my parents Madeline and Antonio Germinario, Italian immigrants, who vested every ounce of energy into my three siblings and myself to become contributing members of the community. They also stressed the importance of education at an early age.”  He also credited ” the Sisters of Saint Francis and the Jesuits of St. Peter’s Preparatory High School, who shaped me into an Italian American, who instilled within me the culture to put others first. I’ve been fortunate to excel in my career, which allows me to fully support those in need, and in particular, the many children who I’ve come to know, love and support as they overcome the odds.”

Germinario recounted his surprise at being accepted into St. Peter’s Prep, a competitive Jesuit high school in Jersey City, N.J., and remembered his parents wondering how they would pay the tuition. But Germinario, then 14 years old, and a football player received a four-year academic scholarship. He said he never forgot what the principal told him: “to whom much is given, much is expected.”

The black-tie event was held on November 10, 2018, at the Bethesda Country Club in Maryland, and was  attended by more than 225 guests.  The event raised over $100,000 for the Lido Scholarship Program. The Gala included a cocktail hour, dinner, a Silent Auction, and dancing to a live band.

The Lido Civic Club has an 89-year history of promoting Italian-American heritage, providing college scholarships, participating in the Wounded Warrior program and other worthy civic endeavors. (Francesco Isgro)