NATIONAL EDUCATION & LEADERSHIP AWARD
THE POLO FAMILY
The Polo family story started in 1940 when Sebastian Marco Polo married Mary DeAngelis. Sebastian, commonly known as “Subby,” and Mary had two sons; Paul S. Polo was born in 1942, and Michael S. Polo was born in 1945. Subby worked primarily as a barber and Mary as a seamstress. The couple also owned a pizza restaurant, and Subby served for one term as a state legislator in the Connecticut House of Representatives in the mid-1970s. In 1941, soon after their wedding, Subby and Mary joined the Order Sons and Daughters of Italy in America’s (OSDIA) Hartford Lodge #333. This began the Polo family’s dedication to our beloved Order, which is now in its third generation of service.
Soon after Subby joined the Order, he took on leadership positions, proceeding quickly through the Local Chairs and becoming the Hartford Lodge President for two terms. Subby was then elected to the Grand Lodge of Connecticut, and he proceeded through the State Chairs to become Grand Lodge of Connecticut State President for two terms. Soon after, Subby was elected National Trustee of the Supreme Lodge, and he also served for many years as Foundation Trustee. In 2001, Sebastian received one of the highest awards that OSDIA bestows on a member—the Dr. Vincenzo Salerno Award—at the 47th National Convention. Subby was a proud member of OSDIA for 68 years until his death in 2009.
In 1960, Subby and Mary’s oldest son, Paul, also joined the same Hartford Lodge #333 and became the youngest Lodge President at the age of 21. Paul was elected Delegate to the National Convention in 1985 and, like his father before him, he proceeded through Chairs until he served as National President in 1995-1997. Paul also served in the Marine Corps before becoming a Master Tube Bender in the aerospace industry and took a part-time job to help pay for his parents’ 25th wedding anniversary. Thirteen years later, Paul owned the aerospace manufacturing business until he sold it in 2004. Being too young to retire, Paul partnered with his youngest son, Michael, who also owns a successful aerospace business, which has continued Paul’s 56 years in the aerospace industry.
Paul also served as Sons of Italy Foundation President for eight years. Paul was the Vice Chairman for Italian Americans for U.S. President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore. President Clinton appointed Paul as an alternate delegate to the U.S. Small Business Administration. President George H. W. Bush placed Paul on the Presidential Roundtable and on the Christopher Columbus Foundation for six years. In 2007, Paul was awarded the Guglielmo Marconi Award, OSDIA’s highest honor bestowed on any individual. The Order has been very important to Paul, and it holds a very special place in his life. After 62 years of service, Paul remains an active member today. Paul is married to his wife, Nami. Paul has three sons. Paul’s oldest son, Dr. Paul S. Polo Jr., DDS, is married to Angela Polo, and they have two children and two grandchildren. Paul’s middle son, Daniel, has three children and five grandchildren.
Subby and Mary’s younger son, Michael S. Polo, joined the Order in 1965 as a member of the same Hartford Lodge #333 as his parents. Michael served in many roles at the local lodge. He was then appointed National Deputy to the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, serving in several leadership roles under three state presidents. In 1995, as a delegate to the National Convention, he was elected National Trustee. After his term, he returned to his lodge in Connecticut, and in 2001, Michael was elected Grand Lodge of Connecticut State President, the first time in Connecticut Grand Lodge history that a father and son held that position. Michael then served as Trustee for the Sons of Italy Foundation. Michael also worked as the Head of Facilities and Maintenance at Hartford Hospital, spending more than 30 years in the healthcare industry. Michael has one son, Thomas Polo, who is married to Kara Polo and has two daughters.
Of Subby and Mary’s four grandsons, Michael G. Polo, the youngest son of Paul and his partner at ACMT, Inc. & ACMT South LLC, joined the Order in 1980 at the age of 16. Michael founded the Shoreline Sons & Daughters of Italy Lodge, the first nationally approved Sons and Daughters of Italy named lodge. Michael served in several state roles and currently serves as the National Third Vice President, continuing his 40 years with the Order.
The Polo Family has shared three generations and 80 years with the Order Sons and Daughters of Italy in America. Every meeting, phone call, and trip feels as though they are visiting relatives because the Order is family to them. The Polo Family looks forward to many more years ahead of serving the Order and visiting with this beloved extended family.