Commissioner Anthony “Tony” J. Paradiso was appointed by the Seneca County Republican Central Committee on July 29, 2019. Paradiso will finish the term of former commissioner Holly Stacy. The term is set to expire at the end of 2020. Paradiso was then elected to a four-year term beginning in January 2021. Paradiso has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Bowling Green State University and an Associate of Science Degree from the University of Cincinnati. His professional career started in 1980 when he taught business and coached football at Norwalk High School. He then was owner and operator of Point Drive-Thru Carry Out Convenience Store in Tiffin from 1981-1983. In 1983, Paradiso became an insurance agent specializing in Life, Disabilities and Annuity Sales for Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company in Tiffin. Paradiso left Northwestern in 1991 and was an instrumental player in the purchase of Tiffin Insurance Agency. In 1996, Paradiso formed Heritage Insurance and be Chief Executive Officer. In January 2002, the company merged with Cavalear Insurance and the Ohio Benefit Group to become Celaris Group. For Celaris Group, Paradiso was President of the Financial Services Division. He was responsible for centralizing operations, including accounting, marketing and systems. He also was responsible for developing personnel via training, mentoring and implementing various compensation plans. In 2002, Sky Insurance purchased the agency. Paradiso was the senior vice president for Sky Insurance from 2002-2004. From 2004-2008, Paradiso was the development manager for Majestic Golf Club, in Lehigh Acres, Florida where he oversaw the development of the operation including land acquisitions, sales and construction. From 2008-2012, he was Senior Vice President of Business Development for Maumee Valley Fabricators Inc./RLM Fabircating, Inc. in Toledo. Since 2013 and through 2019, Paradiso was a co-owner of BAS Broadcasting. The company has seven radio stations including AM 1600 WTTF in Tiffin. Paradiso’s first meeting was August 9.
Favorite local restaurant: It’s difficult to choose, there are so many great restaurants across the county. I like the various small-town restaurants.
Favorite road in the county: I just like driving the countryside in my truck and on my motorcycle. Driving the various scenic country roads of the county is an enjoyable experience. Some of these are very well portrayed in Andrew Kalnow’s recent book, Our Town and Country. When I was seeking the appointment to this position, I traveled a lot of county roads I haven’t been on in a while.
Favorite park in the county: I have two, Garlo Park, my grandson went to the Out & About pre-school there. We also love Steyer Park because we live close and enjoy the park.
Why did you want to be a commissioner: I am at a point in my life where it was time to pay back. The timing is right for me personally, and I want to serve. I think the stars are aligned for us in the county to keep doing good things and I want to contribute to that. As I went and met the people who put me in this chair, they told me not to forget about rural America. I won’t do that. As commissioner it’s not just about the city, but about the entire county. The townships, the villages, all the people.
Favorite U.S. President: Ronald Reagan. He was a great communicator. He’s that old-time movie star, just a class guy. When Reagan came into office we became more patriotic. He was all about the flag, the military, being strong. He re-energized the nation and brought the country together. It was a good time to be around when he was president.
Hobbies: I’m a huge Cleveland Browns Fan, I’ve been a season ticket holder for 31 years. I also love spending time with my seven grandkids. I’m a gun guy, I used to spend a lot of time hunting. I’ve hunted all across the country, including in Alaska. I love the outdoors. I also love spending time with friends and family. I am a former pilot. One other interest I have is in military history. I’ve traveled to several military bases, battlefields and cemeteries.
Interesting fact most people don’t know: I’m actually named after my uncle, Anthony J. Paradiso. He was killed in Europe in World War II. My cousin Tony Paulus is also named after him. Paulus started the Sgt. Anthony Joseph Paradiso Support the Troops Fund, which benefits veterans in need in Seneca County. I’m very proud of my uncle.
Favorite music: I’m an oldies guy. I love Bob Seger, REO Speedwagon and The Beatles. That kind of music. I listen to WTTF.
Favorite TV show and/or movie: The Godfather, Saving Private Ryan and Forrest Gump.
Current committee assignments:
Ottawa-Sandusky-Seneca Solid Waste District
Health Insurance Advisory
District Health Advisory Board
Children and Family First Council
Community Improvement Corporation
Seneca Regional Planning Commission
Local Emergency Planning Commission
Ohio State University Extension Office
Fostoria Economic Development Corp.
IT Advisory Committee
Opiate Task Force