Linda Sirico, local healthcare executive and community leader, has a passion for giving back
“I’ve known Linda for over 40 years, and she remains one of the most amazing women I have ever met. She is loyal and is always there for others, no matter what time of the day or night. Linda embodies the characteristics of a true giver, she dedicates her life to giving to others." Penny Nieberg
You meet people in life who are simply unforgettable. Maybe it’s a brief encounter at a social event, or you see them on a regular basis in your work or personal life. The person who immediately turns the energy up, attracting attention when they walk in any room.
Linda Sirico, is just that type of person. Her easy smile is radiant and her warm laughter contagious.
Linda and her husband Tom, began their love story in Brooklyn, Tom owning popular boutiques. Later, their success rocketed in the mortgage and real estate industry. The couple eventually moved from NYC, to Holmdel ,NJ, where they raised their son Tommy. Ten years ago, Linda launched a new career locally in the healthcare industry.
Now that their son is soon graduating from Rutgers, the couple made a move to the Jersey Shore, now living in beautiful Spring Lake. Always on the go in her professional, charitable and personal life, Linda is not one to idle.
As executive director of business development for Monmouth County’s Comfort Keepers, a leading provider of in-home care, Linda dedicates her working hours to bringing the best in home healthcare to seniors and their families. She has brought Comfort Keepers to a whole new level, networking the company with all the relevant organizations and businesses in the county.
TAPinto had the pleasure of interviewing Linda:
Linda, highlight a little about your background, where you grew up, etc?
“I grew up in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, with very solid people. I met Tom, the love of my life there and some of the best individuals you can imagine. Brooklyn folks are loyal and real. Whenever I run into someone from Brooklyn, that I haven’t yet met, I can tell before they even speak. It’s in their genuine smile, their swagger, their confidence. I am proud to say I grew up in Brooklyn. As much as we loved living in Brooklyn, we were ready for change. After we married, we moved to Staten Island, NY, and then found our home in Holmdel, NJ, where we raised our son Tommy.”
Linda, tell us about your family.
“I was 21 years old when I met a young man who owned multiple successful boutiques in Brooklyn, NY, on 86th Street. He had heard about me from many people and he really wanted me to work in his boutique. I had a job in Manhattan, but he kept begging me to work for him on weekends… I eventually took the job. I was perfect for his professional life, and he was perfect for mine, and then we became perfect for each other’s personal life as well. We went on to marry, and we have been friends for 35 years and married for 29."
Linda, you are a successful businesswoman that could choose many career paths. Why did you choose healthcare and specifically senior health care?
“Growing up in Brooklyn, my dad had become a quadriplegic at age 40, so my mom went back to school and began a career in home care nursing. I saw the companies she worked for and I noticed the differences in them. I made a career switch to healthcare over 10 years ago. After carefully researching the market, I chose Comfort Keepers because I love helping people, and Comfort Keepers is all about the best possible care for the client, it’s a company that is truly interested in making a positive difference.
Linda, you are involved in the charity world, and are always helping nonprofits. The organization that you highlight often is The Monmouth Park Charity Fund. What makes that charity standout among the others for you?
“When I became acquainted with The Monmouth Park Charity Fund, I knew it was a perfect fit for me. First, the Chairwoman Maureen Lloyd is one of the most genuinely good people I have ever met. She is a blessing and one of the kindest and most beautiful person I know. MPCF gives to over 50 charities a year, enabling me to help identify and support the local charities who I see are truly making a difference right in our communities. My grandmother used to tell me growing up, ‘The hand that gives is the hand that’s full’. I don’t mean that I give to get, I mean that I’ve been very lucky in my life, and to share that is divine. The MPCF is a circle of giving that is always helping, every day somewhere in Monmouth County someone is having a better day, a hot meal, a bed to sleep, clothes to wear, a class to attend, a hand to lift them… because of the dedication and hard work of the MPCF. That I am sure of.”
Maureen Lloyd, Chairwoman of the Monmouth Park Charity Fund comments, “MPCF has been incredibly blessed with the amazing dedication and energy Linda Sirico has brought to our Board of Trustees and to all of our event committees. Always a smile on her beautiful face and a positive attitude, Linda has been a huge part of MPCF’s success in introducing new donors to our organization and raising critical funds needed to support over 50 nonprofit agencies in our community. On a personal note, I am proud to call her a true friend!”
Linda is currently working on the success of the upcoming September 5th, 2020, Monmouth Park Charity Fund Kentucky Derby. It’s an event that sells out every year, attracting the Who’s Who in Monmouth County for one of the best parties of the year. The MPCF raises nearly half a million dollars annually to support the charities who provide the most support for those in need in our communities.
Executive Director of the MPCF, Deb Heptig comments, “Linda Sirico walks the talk! She is someone who does what she says she is going to do, and much more. The words that come to mind about Linda among many great words, are integrity and altruistic. Linda has integrity! She is truly an asset to our team!”
Linda, you are often referred to as a “Great Connector”. You are known for connecting people, businesses and charities. What do you attribute that to?
“My whole life I have been truly gifted on how to connect the dots. It comes naturally to me. I am not a jealous person and I feel that if someone can benefit from meeting another person, then I’m excited to make that happen. I am blessed with common sense, something not so common these days. Sometimes that person that you think is giving you not so nice looks from across the room, just may be the right person to connect with if you just give them a chance. It’s about being productive. It’s about planting that seed and letting it grow. I believe God put us here to be productive and if I can see a way to help someone, I will. As a part of connecting people, I recruit for EXIT Realty East Coast. They have a very beneficial recruiting program and I love telling others how EXIT Realty East Coast, is the premier realty company of our time. They have so many beneficial programs, tools and services, available to members of their sales team, and they really do put the client first.”
Linda, what connection comes to mind as one you are most proud of?
“I don’t like to take credit for connecting anyone else to success. However, connecting myself with the Monmouth Park Charity Group is something I’m so proud of. I am honored to serve on our Board of Trustees, and to work with our committee. They took a leap of faith with me, and I am so grateful that they did. I teach my son that if you help at least one person every day, then at the end of the week you have helped seven people. I know that through the MPCF I am helping others in our community, that feels really great.”
Local businessman and member of the MPCF committee, Ray Garland comments, “I honestly can say I have never met anyone like Linda Sirico. Every time I attend an event where they are honoring someone, I think, ‘We need to honor Linda!’ All day, every day, Linda is helping others. Whether it is through her job where she makes sure she connects the right care for the right person, or in her business networking where she makes connections that are life-changing for many, or in her charity work where I have never seen someone as tenacious. She is patiently giving of her time and always generous with her resources.”
Linda, what were obstacles in your life that were difficult to work through?
“Tom and I went through a tumultuous time having a child and after seven pregnancies and the loss of our son Michael, we were blessed to finally bring home a healthy baby boy named Thomas. My greatest accomplishment and blessing has been my son Thomas."
Linda, what is a perfect date night?
So being married to my best friend, every night is date night. We have so many similarities and likes. We love romantic dinners, flowers and candles and a good movie. Our best family day is Sunday. We get together and make a great meal and everyone plays board games. We watch football… those are cherished times."
TAPinto spoke with Linda’s husband Tom:
“Linda is beautiful on the outside, but she’s even more beautiful on the inside. She is the best person I have ever known, male or female. I lost my mom when I was 10 years old and I truly believe Linda was sent to me as a gift from my mother above. I see how my wife goes through life helping everyone every day. My son and I are so blessed to have her. She really is the strongest person I know. She has been through a lot in her life yet she still always puts others first.”
Linda, what are your favorite hobbies?
I used to really enjoy tennis but as my hips were wearing out that had to end! When one door closes, another one opens and today I enjoy long walks on the boardwalk, going to the theater to see plays and decorating my home. I don’t know if cooking is considered a hobby but I’m passionate about cooking! Being Italian I was born with a silver spoon in my hand! I love to cook and I have to say I get rave reviews!”
Linda, I keep hearing there is no better host than you What is your favorite meal to prepare?
“I love simple things. Friends always think I can make anything, which is flattering, I have no fear in the kitchen. If it doesn’t come out perfect the first time, it will be the second time. My stuffed zucchini is a crowd pleaser and my Sunday gravy is always a hit.”
Linda, where is your favorite place to eat?
“My favorite place to eat is our home (and Linda laughs that infectious laugh). My husband and son agree. We know we can order up whatever we want and it’s going to taste the way we want it to! If you ask me what our favorite restaurant is, I would tell you that I enjoy Osteria Cucina Rustica in Marlboro, NJ, they have excellent food. Wolf Gang Steak House in Manhattan is also a favorite, and we love Whispers in Spring Lake.”
Linda, You have a larger than life personality and are referred to often as the life of the party. Where does your personality come from?
“When you lose a parent at a young age you realize life is short and to appreciate life and treasure every moment. I do have my father’s sense of humor, so I am always laughing because I see things that maybe other people don’t see. I love entertaining and watching people. I am one of those people who can talk and listen at the same time, observing as I’m talking. So, I don’t miss too much.”
Linda, where is your favorite vacation spot?
“A beach is a beautiful thing. Traveling outside of NJ, we love Delray Beach in Florida and all it has to offer. We have traveled all the islands taking Tommy with us. Soon when he graduates, we plan to take him all over Europe."
Linda, who is your role model?
“Believe it or not and this may sound corny but it’s the truth. My role model is my husband Tom Sirico. We’ve been together so long and I’ve learned so much from him. He is the kindest most beautiful person I know. He has incredible patience and understanding. He has this wonderful ability to rise above situations that would make anyone else crazy, myself included. He loves me with every breath he takes or at least that’s how he makes me feel. He is a loving father to our son. Tom Sirico is never petty or small. He helps people all the time. He is a wonderful Christian who never looks for the credit he deserves, he lets others shine in his light. I am so proud of my husband. I know how blessed I am to have him."
Linda, in close of our interview, and it's been a real pleasure, do you have any regrets and what is the best decision you have ever made?
Without hesitation and with a hearty laugh, Linda responds, "I have no regrets, only life lessons and the best decision I ever met was marrying Tom Sirico."
And the love story continues...
Linda Sirico is the director of business development for Comfort Keepers in Monmouth County. She is a proud member of the Monmouth Park Charity Fund Board of Trustees, a founding member of the Holmdel Chamber of Commerce, an active member of the Navesink Business Group, and a volunteer for many community organizations, such as Lunch Break of Greater Red Bank and SCAN. Linda is also a recruiter for EXIT Realty East Coast.