When Stamford native Jim Ferraro was a student at Trinity Catholic High School, he worked part time at Stamford Florist as a delivery boy. When he graduated they offered him a full time position and shortly after the owners asked if he wanted to take over the business. He discussed the opportunity with his family and decided to say yes. In 1977 at the early age of 20, Jim Ferraro became the small business owner of Stamford Florist.
“I knew that, at minimum, if I upheld the same business standards of service and quality we would succeed. Always answer the phone with a smile. The word ‘no’ is not an option,” says Ferraro.
Ferraro brought his mom on board as bookkeeper and they slowly grew the business with one other employee. In 1982, Ferraro moved Stamford Florist to a free standing building one block from the original location and it has been there ever since.
“About 5 years ago, I decided to move my florist business to First County Bank as the bank I was with had become very commercial. I already had a business checking account with First County Bank for my real estate business which I was very happy with so I moved Stamford Florist to First County Bank and opened a business checking and credit line.”
Ferraro describes his relationship with First County Bank as very personalized. He likes the community feel of First County Bank and the distinctive service he gets. “You’re not just a number,” he expresses. When he walks into a branch, he says, the branch staff knows his first name and his business and can quickly answer questions, refer him to experts within the bank and/or handle his banking needs efficiently.
“The extra they give,” he says, “makes the relationship more than business. There is always someone I can call and talk to, anytime. They are very accessible from the top to the tellers,” he said.
“I also see a lot that they do in the community – such as the Maple Syrup Festival, grants to help build parks and advance students with scholarships. From the little people to the big people, they do so much for our community. It makes me feel good to be a part of it.”
When asked if he’d ever considered changing the name of the business as it continues to expand and grow, he passionately answers no.
“Stamford is a model city in the United States and I feel very fortunate to live and work here. There’s been a lot of growth, a lot of people coming into Stamford to work. I’m proud to carry the name in my business.”
Today, Ferraro has 10 employees working for him, has added homemade Truffles to his service offerings, which he says, is quite popular. As for the future, he has some significant business and finance goals on the horizon including looking into retirement investments and is excited to work with First County Bank to help him attain them.