We had the good fortune of connecting with Margy Bons and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Margy, other than deciding to work for yourself, what else do you think played a pivotal role in your story?
Working for myself was never the goal. My son, Sgt. Michael A Marzano, was killed in Iraq. Supporting his fellow brothers and sisters in uniform was what made me start and continue with the nonprofit. I had to push through the pain and tragedy of his loss so that I could help others and therefore make him proud.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
As a military support nonprofit, there are many organizations trying to assist the needs of our service members and their families. Finding your niche is key. Discovering how you can assist with different programs without duplication is difficult. I would listen to and find a need that had not been met and then we would start a program to help. Once we found funding, which could be just a verbal persuasion or a grant, then we would work out the details of how to incorporate the program into our mission statement. Some programs required stricter guidelines where others were simple. I learned that not all shoes fit the same. I also learned that you have to know your audience when discussing funding. For example, there is a huge difference between accountants and mothers. One wants to know the breakdown of funding and financial strategies whereas the others want to know the needs and stories of those in need as it tears at their heartstrings. While there is a crossover, you must be prepared to deal with all. Talking about my son is easy, helping his brothers and sisters in uniform is as easy as breathing to me but sometimes, I had to remind myself and others that I was, after all, a mother that buried her son and was doing the best with that that I could.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love the ocean and the mountains. I would take them to interesting restaurants that served different foods in interesting ways. We have a restaurant that serves a mason jar filled with a bloody mary and food for two in it. You can get it with or without alcohol and share the skewers for food. Then a ride to an island either by ferry or automobile where you can see mountains, valleys and the ocean all in one journey. We could go to a little town that has little shops with items that can’t be found at your local department store and meet the locals to hear stories of their stores. I think a story has to be told about a place you have visited and must begin with “Oh My Gosh, I did/saw/enjoyed this amazing day, I learned so much” .
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Al Marzano-my son’s father who had to share the pain of losing our son.