A Siena trustee and Capital Region real estate, finance and hospitality executive has been named the 2020 Civitella Entrepreneur of the Year.
Kenneth M. Raymond, Jr. who credited part of his success to "having a knack for finding the right people" accepted the award at a March 5 reception in the Maloney Great Room.
Siena presents the award annually to an individual who has excelled as an entrepreneur, positively impacted the community, and is driven by the entrepreneurial spirit and Franciscan values of the College.
“Ken Raymond as both a Siena trustee and as the recipient of our Civitella Entrepreneur of the Year award epitomizes what it means to be a Saint,” said Michael J. Hickey '83, executive director of Siena’s Stack Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “He is successful in both his business ventures and community endeavors, and is always willing to lend a helping hand. We are honored that he has agreed to accept this award - he is richly deserving of it.”
In addition to his business endeavors, Raymond is heavily involved in area philanthropic work.
"I say a prayer every morning: ‘Dear God, give me the opportunity to help someone today, and I'd rather that they don't know it’s me.’”
Raymond’s entrepreneurial career spans over 35 years in the real estate, finance, and hospitality industries. He is the broker/owner of Coldwell Banker Prime Properties, the largest Coldwell Banker residential and commercial real estate franchise operation in New York.
He is a partner of Parc Partners, owner and affiliated with Holiday Inn Express and Hilton Hotels, Indigo hotels, and independent brands. He is also affiliated with SEFCU mortgage services, which acquired Home Funding Finders, the largest residential mortgage banker in its market. He is the founder and CEO of Prime Companies, and has led the industry in offering a full line of real estate and hospitality services.
He serves on the boards of trustees of Siena and Paul Smith’s College, and is an emeritus trustee for the Albany Boys Club. He is president of the board for Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Albany, with a strong focus on housing and the reopening of Camp Scully.
He was founder and former president of the Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau, and previously served on the board for St. Gregory’s School for Boys in Loudonville and Friends in Adoption. He is active with Coaches vs. Cancer and Real Men Wear Pink, which raises funds for cancer research for the American Cancer Society.
Margaret E. Madden, Ph.D., interim president, welcomed guests at the reception and noted the success of Siena’s Stack Center in preparing entrepreneur students.
“It gives them the opportunity to be involved in significant, meaningful academic pursuits that lead to impactful careers after graduation.”
Devon Hebert ’20, president of Siena’s Entrepreneur Club, agreed, saying, “The Stack Center gives students practical tools needed to start their own businesses. It teaches us things that can’t be found in any classroom or textbook, and it has brought me closer to where I want to be in my life, which is to own my own business.”
This year the College has announced the endowment of the annual award by Antonio Civitella ’91, president and CEO of Transfinder.
“Tony Civitella was our first Entrepreneur of the Year recipient and has continued to be actively involved in advancing entrepreneurship on Siena's campus and in our community at large,” said Hickey. “We are grateful for his generous gift, which allows us to annually honor successful Capital Region entrepreneurs.”