In 1910, 17-year-old Angelo Tomasso, Sr. arrived in New York from Italy, determined to succeed in America. Following service during World War I and several years working as a laborer, he used the one piece of equipment he owned – a steam shovel – to establish a construction company, Angelo Tomasso, Inc., in 1923. Tomasso, Sr.’s perseverance is legendary: In the early years, he drove his steam shovel overnight from New Britain to Hartford because the contract for constructing the foundation for the Hartford County Building was to be awarded to the first to arrive on site. He won the contract. During the 1930s and 1940s, Tomasso paved the majority of the roads in New Britain, built the first section of New York’s Taconic Parkway and the original Brainard Airport in Hartford. Always thankful for his blessings, Tomasso became active in the community and established a culture of giving back that is alive and well today. A founding member of several ethnic organizations in the area and personal friends with Franklin D. Roosevelt, Tomasso, Sr. passed away in 1952.