Vena called Storey a natural leader after the fashion of Joseph Procacci, chief executive officer and chairman of the board of Procacci Bros. Sales Corp., who also helped bring the new market to reality.
“These are people that step up when they’re called upon,” Vena said. “We have lots of people that are following in those footsteps.”
Characteristically, Storey doesn’t like to take credit for the market’s successful opening. He attributes the successful market opening to the work of the many leaders who helped push for its relocation.
In the early 2000s, Storey and Richard Nardella, chief executive and financial officer of Nardella Inc., began the long process of relocation by meeting with the staff of Vincent Fumo, a former state senator.
Later, others, such as Vena, Procacci, George Manos, president of TM Kovacevich International Inc., and Louis Penza Jr., the market’s 2011 chairman of the board and partner with Pinto Bros. Inc., spearheaded the process to construct a new terminal market.
“Jimmy and I had a lot of fortitude,” Nardella said. “We stuck to it.”
It took many hours of meetings — the wholesalers would arrive for work at 3 a.m. or 4 a.m., finish their workday at noon, then try to push the political leaders to construct the market during late afternoon meetings, Nardella said.
“We talked to and put pressure on a lot of people, but it finally came to be,” he said. “We have a beautiful, Class A type of market.”