John Giambalvo was 6 years old when his father, Jack, opened his first dealership in 1974.
Through the years, John watched as his dad expanded the business to three stores and eight brands while making sure to give back to the local community of York, Pa.
Now 42 and heading Jack Giambalvo Motor Co., John Giambalvo is continuing his father's commitment to area youth.
"He was really the one that instilled that type of charitable giving," said Giambalvo, who joined the family business in 1996 after graduating from the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and working for a year as a clerk for a York County judge.
As a sponsor of the York County Junior Miss for more than 25 years, the Giambalvo family helps provide scholarships to 28 high school juniors with top grades, community service experience and performance talent.
"They've been a huge backbone of the program," said Lyn Bergdoll, chairwoman of the program, which changed its name this year to the Distinguished Young Women of York County. "Their involvement in the program gives it credibility."
The contributions go beyond money. Giambalvo provides a car for parades and promotes the program through advertising at his dealerships, and his wife, Bonnie, is a mentor to one of the finalists.
"Every year we give to that program, and we are just amazed at the quality of these young ladies," said Giambalvo.
For 20 years, the company also has sponsored a golf tournament to raise money for the local chapter of the Special Olympics.
But it wasn't enough for John Giambalvo simply to maintain his father's charitable programs. Three years ago he created the Giambalvo Family Foundation to expand the company's community involvement. The foundation's first major act will be to sponsor York County's American Cancer Society Relay for Life in June.
"Sometimes you see companies where the father, like his dad, Jack, builds a business, and it's very community-oriented," said Bergdoll. "And then sometimes the next generation does not follow in those footsteps. So to see John following his dad is really rewarding. It's really what makes communities great."