When I first read about Julie Camardo, CEO of Zweigle’s Inc., she sounded like someone I would want to become friends with in real life. We’re both similar in age, commitment to community, as well as also being active in numerous groups that support women or women-owned businesses.
Julie is a woman who has gone above and beyond for the people and the community she cares about. That was certainly evidenced in the nomination submitted on her behalf.
Born in Rochester, NY, Julie attended Providence College and received a BA degree in Psychology. She moved back to Rochester in 2002, when both her grandfather and mother were still at the family-owned business. Over the years, she evolved from office to sales, becoming Vice President in 2005, and President in 2009. Zweigle’s Board of Directors named her CEO in 2015. She now serves as the 5th Generation owner and CEO of Zweigle’s Inc.
The picture of resilience
In her first seven years at the company, she overcame her mother’s death while also raising her three children as a single mother. During this time, she also led two expansions of the company with a focus on hiring and developing new talent from the poorest areas of the Rochester, NY community.
Her commitment to community is obvious through her involvement in local groups. She sits is on the Board of Directors for MCC Foundation, ESL, Rochester Chamber of Commerce, Holy Childhood and Special Touch Bakery. She is a strong supporter of United Way, Golisano Children’s Hospital, Susan B. Anthony House, and The Strong. She is also a current member of the Vistage organization.
The prepared meats company is guided by four core values of quality, caring, accountability and integrity. Those values are obvious when you look at one of Julie’s passion for helping people in her community to get out of poverty. One of her stated directives is to target more than 33% of the new jobs created for those currently living in poverty within the Rochester community.
Though I don’t know her personally, I can tell Julie is the kind of woman you want to stand beside and you want to cheer on. Her advice to women coming into manufacturing was to be open to learning from those who came before you. Her three children, the 140-year old company she’s at the helm of, and the community in which she’s an active advocate for are extremely lucky to have her.