When Peter Gisondi started his New York-based painting contracting company in 1952, he probably never envisioned it would one day make his son a TV star. But 58 years later, Peter Gisondi Jr. became known to viewers as the head painter on the Discovery Channel's "Construction Intervention" show.
The family firm, Peter Gisondi & Co., Inc., was hand-picked by show host Charlie "The Bulldog" Frattini, who had worked with Gisondi and his brothers John and Anthony previously on a large project in Queens.
"He saw our style of workmanship on the job and met with us to discuss the opportunity of appearing on the show," says Peter Gisondi Jr. "We jumped at the chance to help Charlie make the dreams of area business owners come true."
In each episode, Frattini's crew (also including a head electrician, master carpenter and project superintendent from other New York firms) had four days to save struggling businesses from a construction job nightmare. Among them: a wine store in Brooklyn, a hot wing shop in Harlem, and the Blarney Stone, a restaurant that has experienced tough times since the 2001 terrorist attack on the neighboring World Trade Center.
"The most challenging part of being involved in a complete demolition and reconstruction of an existing business in four days is knowing when and where to start painting," Peter says. "If you start too soon, all your work is damaged. Start too late and the job doesn't get completed on time."
The impromptu band of contractors relied on Sherwin-Williams' quality coatings and delivery service to meet the show's super-compressed deadlines.
"We used the Duration line to cover walls and trim, and Sherwin-Williams' vast array of specialty finishes saved the day time and time again," says John Gisondi. "We needed dryfall, direct-to-metal, stains, varnishes, matte finishes, eg-shel, semi-gloss and just about every product Sherwin-Williams produces in order to make each build beautiful."
The company's vast chain of stores enabled the TV construction crew to get the necessary supplies wherever the shows were being filmed.
"The regional support team of Sherwin-Williams employees are the best in the business," says Anthony Gisondi. "Regardless of what time of day or night we needed the materials, they delivered them to the site so that the projects could be completed successfully."
In the end, it was an uplifting experience for everyone at the company.
"The hopes and dreams of local families and business owners depended on the unselfish dedication of Charlie and the crew," says John. "The Peter Gisondi & Co. team members were proud to be part of that crew. Giving back to your community is a necessity that all companies need to expand upon. If we all spread good karma, the world will be a better place to live in."
Even if that world has changed dramatically since Peter Gisondi Sr. first started slinging paint.
"The economics of the painting industry have drastically changed since my father founded the company in 1952," Peter Jr. says. "What worked 20 years ago may not be effective today. If you don't try different and unique ways to improve your sales and marketing, your company will not survive in these tough economic times."