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By Karen Young
Photo by Dave Scavone
Wednesday morning, March 11, NAPS national officers, members in town for the Legislative Training Seminar and a group of distinguished guests, including Postal Service luminaries, gathered at 1727 King St. in Alexandria to dedicate the NAPS Headquarters Building in honor of the late NAPS President Vince Palladino. He served as president from 1992 to 2004.
The temperature was cool—mid-40s—but the sun was out, with no chance of rain on this auspicious NAPS day. A red drape hung over the front of the building from the second-floor balcony. Secretary/Treasurer Chuck Mulidore welcomed everyone to the ceremony. “We have to thank Vinny for this sunny morning,” he declared. Mulidore introduced Jim Stokes, president of STOLADI Property Group, which manages the building.
Stokes said it was an honor for him to be part of the ceremony honoring his former mentor. Vince Palladino was instrumental in purchasing the property in 1994. STOLADI was a new management company; the NAPS building was only their second client.
“Vince was larger than life and an inspiration,” Stokes said. “I’m so excited to have the building named after my hero.” NAPS Northeast Region Vice President Tommy Roma recounted that, in 2000 when he was elected regional vice president, the late Andy Sozzi, then New York Area vice president, told Roma he had to get the NAPS Headquarters building named after Palladino. The years went by. Then, at the fall 2019 Executive Board meeting, Mulidore made the motion to name the building after the late president. The motion passed unanimously.
“My dream has become a reality,” Roma declared. “I want to thank my NAPS family for bestowing this honor on my friend.”
NAPS President Brian Wagner thanked the attendees on behalf of the Executive Board and the 27,000-plus NAPS members for being there to honor Vince. “Our building symbolizes NAPS’ solid commitment to its members,” he said. “Vince’s presidency had a solid foundation; he instilled confidence and hope and worked for the betterment of our members.”
Wagner referred to Palladino’s vision to buy the building. “Vince was well-respected and an influential leader to all of us,” Wagner stressed. “His spirit resonates today in this building and throughout our membership.”
Former Postmaster General Jack Potter, who held the position from 2001 to 2010, said this day was a celebration of Vince’s life. “How dedicated he was to all of you,” he told NAPS members in the audience. “He was great to work with; he understood it took a balance. But he could be very stubborn in representing you!”
“He was so challenged on 9/11,” Potter recounted. “He was concerned for his own family, as well as his postal family. But he was there at work looking out for his postal family.”
Wagner introduced Postmaster General Megan Brennan, commenting it spoke volumes about Palladino’s legacy to have such a prestigious group at the dedication ceremony.
Brennan said she was honored to be at the ceremony representing the Postal Service. “I thank Vince for his passion about the Postal Service and NAPS,” she said. “He was a fierce advocate for supervisors, but a consummate professional. This is a fitting tribute.”
The PMG urged NAPS members to continue advocating for a Postal Service that matters to the American public.
Wagner introduced Marylou Palladino, who was there with her fellow siblings. “We miss our father every day,” she declared. “But the invitation to come to this ceremony makes it sweeter; we are happy to be here.” She thanked the NAPS Executive Board, with a special nod to Tommy Roma, for acknowledging their father and keeping his memory and legacy alive in NAPS.
“Our father recognized this building’s potential,” she affirmed. “Getting the funds was a challenge and he was very proud of it. We are humbly honored, as he would be.”
Then, the red drape was dropped and the building’s new name was unveiled: The National Association of Postal Supervisors Vincent A. Palladino Building.