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2017-01-27 / Top 100 People

Carmen Germana


Carmen’s Wholesale Tires

Carmen Germana came to this country when he was 14 years old and worked various jobs until opening his own place in Hornerstown in 1960, later moving it to Johnstown in 1967. Over the years, his store sold almost everything from automotive products to perfume to designer jeans.

In January 2009, the store’s oil heater caught fire and because it was so cold outside, the firefighters couldn’t save the building.

Germana decided to rebuild, but because big-box stores sell everything from soup to nuts, he opted to focus his business on tires, wheels and other automotive products.

“Gone are the days when a guy could walk into Carmen’s Wholesale and get his Christmas shopping done for his wife and kids while getting his winter tires put on,” he said.

For years, Germana has helped buy produce for the Son’s of Italy spaghetti dinners and likes to make and serve the salads.

At 83 years old, Carmen still shows up for work every day and feels fortunate to have his son, daughter and son-in-law to help manage Carmen’s Wholesale, although he wishes he had spent more time with them earlier in his career.

“One ‘mistake’ I made was going into business by myself. When I was younger I worked from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. six days a week… I didn’t see my kids much (until they were old enough to work at the store), and didn’t have time to watch their sporting and other events,” he said

Germana believes a community’s potential can be reached by paying goodwill forward.

“Fifty-six years ago, others helped me to get my business going. Over the years, I have helped a number of people launch their own businesses. I think our community can realize its potential when we help young people become successful in their own business here in town.”

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