Businessman Camilo Pichardo has much to say about
the Uphams Corner neighborhood and the people he interfaces with
regularly and all of it very positive. "Listen" to his speech at
the Uphams Corner Main Street Annual Meeting, find out more about his
business (YELP) and learn more about him - his principles, his
attitude, his family and why he cares so much about Uphams Corner.
Uphams Corner Main Street Annual Meeting
The Uphams Corner Main Street annual meeting, held October 23, 2012,
was well attended and full of pleasant surprises. One of them was
a speech given by businessman Camilo Pichardo whose countenance carries
a smile at all times. He spoke with a heavy Domincan accent,
often having to repeat his words or rephrase his sentences.
Though he had a prepared an outline for his speech, he said later on
that he spoke from “his heart.”
Camilo has been working in Uphams Corner for at least 15 years and, he
says, it has never been better. He began his speech with praise;
he ended it with praise and gratitude. He carried himself
throughout with humility.
Dedicated to his extended family here in the United States, he states
with confidence how much he cares about his community and how much he
wants to see Uphams Corner improve. And wanting to “put rubber to
his road here in Uphams Corner,” he has stepped forward and will be
serving on the Uphams Corner Main Street Board of Directors, sharing
his ideas and his energy.
Two people in particular were the focus of his words of praise, but
we’ll let him tell you who they are when he gives his speech
(below). If you detect a dialectical sound to his speech, you are
right. Imagine a native Spanish speaker who serves his clients
well (many are also Spanish speaking) and who seeks to improve his
English language capabilities.
Camilo Pichardo Addresses Uphams Corner Main Street Annual Meeting
|Good morning everyone. My name is Camilo Pichardo.
Before I give my speech, I want to thank the person that is the reason
I am here and someone that I really feel very proud of, a very
important part in my life and my family. I feel proud and I never have
known somebody or some person like her. It is Miss Linda [Webster].
In this community, she has done many good things. I was telling you my
name was Camilo Pichardo and I am the owner of Discount Shoes Store,
773 Dudley Street. I have been there around five years . But before
that, I worked at Style for around seven years which is now where Foot
Locker is located. So I've been in this neighborhood for a long time. I
love this neighborhood.
Now since Max [MacCarthy], I am one of the incoming board members of
the Uphams Corner Main Street. I have recently been working with him. I
want to talk a little bit about why I want to join the board.
Like Gregory at Paraiso, Max has been a consistent help, assisting me
with little things, from getting my business name more available on the
Internet to helping me with infrastructural concerns on Dudley Street,
to getting my business more involved in local events. He is great in
What I can say about Max is he cares about everyone. He is helping
everyone. He listens to everyone. He has time for everyone. He is
unstoppable. (the room burst out in joyful laughter) He worries about
everyone around here.
He also helped me to apply for the LaunchPad program which is an
Internet program offered by Dorchester Bay and Uphams Corner Main
Street to help my business get an even larger presence online.
Approximately 30 businesses have applied and we will hear about the
results in a couple weeks. That will help bring new customers to our
Upwards Corner Main Street has also been working on designing a kiosk
to promote local activity and local businesses like mine. They went
through a design process, asking businesses what they think. Max asked
me to give feedback, which I did. I think it is going to be very good
Why did I join this board? Through multiple interactions, I know that
Max and Uphams Corner Main Street care about the local businesses
around here. They are coming up with a lot of great ideas to help us. I
want to be part of this. He has shown how I can provide my feedback to
drive the world of Uphams Corner Main Street and best help business. I
want to see this neighborhood improve.
I have been in this neighborhood for a long time and I think I can help
improve things. I hope through my efforts with Uphams Corner Main
Street I can help my own business grow.
Interview with Camilo Pichardo, October 25, 2012
||I was born in the Dominican Republic and came to United States around
1995. I came here because my wife's family was already here and we
wanted all wanted to be together. I really like the idea of being
together with the whole family here in United States.
||How did you earn money when you first came to the United States?
||On the second day that I was here in United States, I walked around the
corner and was offered a job. It was a retail clothing store. Yes, I am
good with customers and I enjoy working in a retail environment.
||How did you know that you would like retail?
||I knew I would like being in the retail environment because in the
Dominican Republic, I used to work for the casino and I was also a
long-distance call operator for five years. I like working with people.
I'm very glad that I came here. Because being with my family, things go
better. I'm very happy with my family. I have three kids, Stephen who
is 17 years old and goes to Boston Latin Academy, Stephany who is 14
years old an also goes to Latin Academy. My youngest (11) is Madeline
Camila. She goes to the McCormick School in South Boston. She is
going to take the test for the exam schools. Hopefully all three of my
kids will be together.
||Have your experiences with Uphams Corner Main Street changed with the new Executive Director, Max MacCarthy?
||In the 16 years or more that I've been working around here in Uphams
Corner, the only time Main Street ever came here was to ask for money,
for donations, $20 or $25. With Max it is different.
|| Why? Is he giving YOU money?
|No. Ha ha Ha. No, not really.
|I just want to make you, make us both, laugh. Ha ha Ha
|He is so good with the community and all the businesses. He is bringing
us really things that are going to make our business grow, like getting
us to the Internet, Facebook, yelp , twitter and other such programs.
I do not have a computer online in my store. I have it in my house.
With all the programs that Max is offering us, nobody ever did that
before, during the 16 years I've been here. So he is doing things that
nobody's done before. He’s a really nice guy.
|I walked past here and I see you, sweeping in front of your store. Do
you know how good that makes me feel? “Oh my God, a business is
cleaning in front of their store.”
|I do it every day. I try to every day clean the front of the store.
That’s so the guy who passes by every day from the city, he doesn't
have to clean everything. I try to help him. That way I'm saving time
for him. And I'm helping them in some way.
I have a request: Over here we need to have a couple more trash cans.
It is not right that people are throwing the trash on the sidewalk. But
I always try to help. I like to keep things clean.
|Tell me more about Miss Linda [Webster].
Camilo: Linda is incredible. Linda is part of my heart. I have never
seen somebody like her in my life. Of course I like my wife better
because she's part of my family.
But Ms. Linda is different from everybody that I knew before. When I go
to church, I pray for her. I pray for her family. I pray for everybody.
She has treated me like nobody else has. It's not just the way she
treats me and the way she treats everybody. She worries about the
community. She worries about everybody.
She wants the community to grow. She wants everything to look clean and
nice. She wants to improve the community. She wants the community to
look different. She wants more people to come around here to Uphams
Corner. She wants everybody in this community to feel better. I can see
in her face that she has a nice heart.
|Posted: November 3, 2012
Nancy J Conrad