Certo Brothers Distributing receives state-wide recognition

October 24, 2018

Historic image of horse and carriage operated by original Certo Bottling, now Certo Brothers Distributing.

Historic image of horse and carriage operated by original Certo Bottling, now Certo Brothers Distributing.

Certo Brothers Distributing Company, a longtime supporter of Niagara County Community College (NCCC) earned the Edward J. Pawenski Business/Industry Partnership Award at the New York Community College Trustees (NYCCT) Awards Dinner on September 22 in Saratoga Springs, NY.  The award is presented to one business in the state annually, recognizing their partnership and commitment with a local community college.

This award has particular significance to the history of NCCC, as Edward Pawenski was a founding member of the College, and the longest serving board member in New York State.  Pawenski left a legacy of giving and service to the college and community, and in this vein NCCC nominated Certo Brothers Distributing to receive the prestigious state-wide award in Pawenski’s name. 

Albert Certo served alongside Edward Pawenski as an original member of the Board of Trustees for the College from 1962-1983.  In addition to the pivotal role in the establishment of NCCC, the Certo family continued to donate their time and resources to the mission of the College throughout the years.  Albert Certo’s nephew, Peter served as a member of the NCCC Foundation Board from 1993-2017, recognizing the value of a partnership between the College and his own business goals saying, “I am a true believer in education.  NCCC is an important institution and provides educated individuals for local businesses to hire.”  Following in the footsteps of her father, Sharon Certo-Chislett shares a connection to NCCC as a member of the current Foundation Board of Directors. 

Over the years, Certo Brothers Distributing has been involved in numerous philanthropic efforts to benefit NCCC, including the sponsorship of Founders Day, Balloons over Niagara, the Foundation Scholarship Gala, and the Alumni Association 5k Run.  Additionally, the Albert J. Certo Memorial Scholarship Fund Golf Tournament raised more than $250,000 for student scholarships, benefiting over 150 scholar-athletes.  Certo Brothers Distributing built one of the first scholarship endowments at NCCC, and they are a sponsor of the Distinguished Student Scholarships.  These scholarships recognize the top students in Niagara County who intend to remain in the county. 

With all donations combined, Certo Brothers Distributing is the largest contributing company to NCCC.  This financial support combined with the efforts and leadership exhibited by Certo Brothers Distributing, make them the ideal recipient of the Edward J. Pawenski Business/Industry Partnership Award.