At the National Advisory Group (NAG) Conference on March 28, Peter Tamburro received the 2023 NAG Lifetime Award for Convenience Retailing. Tamburro, general manager of Clifford Fuel in Utica, N.Y., operator of 20 Cliff’s Local Markets, has been active in NAG for almost 30 years.
The award ceremony took place at Cooper’s BBQ in Austin, Texas, on the third night of the conference that began on March 26 and continues through March 29.
John Lofstock, executive director of NAG, introduced the award and spoke on Tamburro’s impact on NAG and the convenience store industry.
“Peter’s participation in resurrecting NAG and providing leadership when it was needed most cannot be understated. He gave the association credibility, stability and an abundance of industry knowledge,” said Lofstock.
Tamburro worked for the Nice N Easy franchisee Valley Oil Co. from 1983 to 1993. He helped develop 10 Nice N Easy locations and several Citgo and Mobil marts in the Hudson Valley in New York. He was then promoted to vice president of store operations. In 1993 he was hired as director of franchise operations by John MacDougall, president and founder of Nice N Easy Grocery Shoppes in Canastota, N.Y. Valley Oil had been sold to Mid-Valley Oil (Xtra Mart). Tamburro was later promoted to vice president of franchise operations, followed by senior executive vice president.
Tamburro joined Clifford Fuel when Nice N Easy was sold to CST Brands in 2014.
“Since his involvement with NAG began back in 1995, Peter was always willing to open his doors for others to learn and always brought a high level of energy to NAG events to embody what the NAG experience is all about,” said Lofstock.
Tamburro was elected to the New York Association of Convenience Stores (NYACS) Convenience Store Hall of Fame in 2016. Additionally, he was awarded the NYACS John MacDougall Leadership Award in 2022.
Presentation of 2023 Award
Lofstock played a video tribute put together by Jeff Carpenter, director of education and training, Cliff’s, and then called Carpenter forward to present Tamburro with the award.
“Peter’s passion, vision and humble leadership has created years upon years of success for many companies within our industry,” said Carpenter.
He noted that Tamburro understands building a successful business is about creating a positive impact on the people who work for you and the customers you serve.
“Peter Tamburro is a true industry leader. Without question he’s made a significant impact on the convenience industry as a whole,” said Carpenter.
Tamburro spoke about his enjoyment watching NAG grow and mentioned previous award winners.
“I need to acknowledge the previous award winners: David Johnson, Bill Weigel, Bill Kent, Scott Apter — who’s here right now — Gus Olympidis and my good friend Mary Banmiller, who’s right over here,” Tamburro said at the ceremony. “Your outstanding achievements and contributions to this industry have been inspiring to me, and it’s crazy to think that I’m now counted as one of your peers.”
He also reflected on the time he spent with MacDougall as his mentor, who encouraged him to be involved with NAG, and his time with NAG and Cliff’s.
“I truly absolutely enjoy my time at NAG and the people that I’ve met and the people that I will continue to meet. And I’m so proud of my colleagues at Cliff’s Local Market that are here. I can’t be more thankful to the Clifford Fuel family,” said Tamburro. “When Nice N Easy sold I thought it was the end of the road for me. … And to Clifford Fuel family I can truly say my now 10th year has been the most enjoyable, rewarding job…”