Ocean County entrepreneur earns SBA New Jersey 2022 Small Business Person of the Year Award

Beverly Zaccherio, founder and president of Senior Solutions for the Jersey Shore based in Point Pleasant, is this year’s U.S. Small Business Administration 2022 New Jersey Small Business Person of the Year.

The Small Business Person of the Year Award is part of National Small Business Week, held this year from May 1-7. This year’s NSBW theme, “Building a Better America Through Entrepreneurship,” highlights the resilience, ingenuity and creativity of these award winners who, like millions of small businesses across America, have navigated challenges from the pandemic and contributed to our nation’s economic comeback.

SBA New Jersey District Director John Blackstock joined Zaccherio near her Ocean County office to present her with the district honors.

Zaccherio built Senior Solutions for the Jersey Shore after being laid off from her former job at a leading crystal manufacturer in 2008. As she found herself unemployed and in need of another full-time position, with a 3-year-old son at home, she pivoted.

Zaccherio reinvented herself professionally by creating a small business in the health care industry.

Though originally intended as a temporary career move, Zaccherio soon found herself drawn to the field and what she saw as an unmet industry need.

“So many families I worked with told me that, if they’d known other options were available, they would have pursued them rather than, for example, selling their mom or dad’s home so quickly and moving them to an assisted living facility or nursing home,” she said. “People are often just lost and struggling when it comes to making life decisions for their elderly loved ones.”

Along with her personal consulting work, Senior Solutions also employs eight trained specialists who provide such in-home health aide services as light housekeeping, cooking, errand-running and home organizing.

“Many seniors want to stay in their homes, and we strive to enable that,” she said, “looking out for red flags on their behalf, reminding them to take their medication, providing companionship and more.”

When COVID-19 began to appear in the Garden State at the onset of the pandemic and businesses shut down, Zaccherio applied for and received a COVID EIDL advance. Thanks to that payment of funds, she was able to continue offering her business’s services while keeping her 11 employees on payroll, preserving their jobs and salaries.

Blackstock hailed Zaccherio’s perseverance as an entrepreneur.

“Small business owners like Beverly are tough as nails,” he said. “They stand up and continue time and time again. Beverly’s drive, determination and ability to take calculated risks while also tapping into a pool of available resources make a positive difference in our hometowns across New Jersey. Thanks to small business owners like Beverly, America’s economy continues to build back better from COVID and move forward. Congratulations, Beverly, on such demonstrable achievements, especially in the face of adversity.”

The NSBW Virtual Summit will be held Monday through Thursday, and will include honoring small businesses around the country, educational sessions, online business resources and exciting speakers. Highlights of the summit will include virtual booths to develop one-on-one connections with public- and private-sector partners, and the summit will conclude with the awards ceremony honoring more than 60 small business owners, including Zaccherio as New Jersey State Small Business Person of the Year.