Read more about Santo’s career, life, and family, and why he’s the right candidate for Allentown City Council.
Meet Santo Napoli
Committed To OUR City.
Santo Napoli For Allentown City Council
About Santo Napoli
Santo Napoli was born in Reading, PA, to parents who immigrated from Sicily, Italy. His mother was a seamstress and his father was a machine operator who manufactured leather for car seats. Both faced difficult work conditions, with his mother working in a sweatshop and his father facing exposure to a lot of chemicals in his work with cowhides. Santo learned from his parents to work hard and to be humble. In his words, “They worked their tails off so I would have more opportunity than they had.”
Santo became the first in his family to attend college, graduating from Alvernia University in 1995 with a degree in Marketing and a minor in Management. To pay for college, he worked as a landscaper during the summer and at a sneaker store during the school year, where he was able to apply everything he learned in his business classes. Santo fell in love with the sneaker business and became manager of the store when he graduated.
Moving To Allentown
After a couple of years of running the sneaker store and learning all the ins and outs of the business, Santo wanted to try it on his own. In 1999, Allentown didn’t have a great climate for retail, but Santo saw the potential of the downtown and decided to give it a shot. He opened New York Urban, a menswear store, in the 600 block of Hamilton Street, and his business became so successful that he opened several more locations. Santo has devoted his career to creating jobs in Allentown, supporting his employees’ entrepreneurial pursuits, providing affordable options for school uniforms, and catering to a wide variety of customers.
In 2014, Santo opened his current menswear store on Hamilton Street, assembly88. Despite the challenges of this past year, assembly88 has a solid customer base and has grown its online business tremendously. The store has won Best Men’s Shop of the Lehigh Valley three times, and many of Santo’s employees have gone on to run their own successful stores in Allentown. Santo wants to take his small business experience to City Council, so he can expand the strong retail climate of downtown to all parts of Allentown.
Santo also works as a commercial and residential landlord in both Allentown and Reading. He strives to keep rent low, which helped a few of his commercial tenants attain enough capital to start their own successful clothing and shoe stores on the East Side. As an upstanding landlord, Santo became passionate about bettering the housing stock in the city and protecting residents from absentee and negligent landlords. Santo realized that he needs to run for City Council in order to truly advocate for residents.
Santo serves on numerous boards across Allentown, which has given him exposure to a diverse array of community stakeholders. In 2018, Mayor Ray O’Connell placed him on the Allentown Parking Authority Board, and in 2019, Santo was asked to serve on the Allentown Chamber of Commerce Board.
Santo began volunteering with the Downtown Allentown Business Alliance (DABA) in 2013, and he has been serving as chair of the board since 2017. At DABA, Santo designed and helped implement the Allentown Merchant Program (AMP) card, which is a gift card that must be spent downtown. To date, the program has brought over $325,000 in revenue to downtown merchants. In 2015, DABA named Santo Volunteer of the Year for his role in creating the AMP card.
Santo lives in the West End with his wife, Jasmine, who was born to immigrant parents from Bangladesh. They have a son who is a 1st grader in the Allentown School District. Santo feels a strong connection to his Sicilian roots, so he frequently travels back to Italy to see his family. He is a lover of Italian, gardening, and the Eagles.
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