A Conversation with Larry Capoccia, Alexandria Metal Finishers

After leaving Italy with his young wife in the 1960s, Loreto “Larry” Capoccia took his experience with metals to a new home in the U.S., and soon to Alexandria Metal Finishers


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After leaving Italy with his young wife in the 1960s, Loreto “Larry” Capoccia took his experience with metals to a new home in the U.S., and soon at Alexandria Metal Finishers, where he eventually became owner. He also served as secretary, vice president and president of the AESF Baltimore-Washington chapter. More than 50 years later, he continues leading the company as a proud American and proud part of the surface finishing industry.

PF: How were you involved in the finishing industry in Italy?

LC: I was in a foundry, both in the mechanical aspects and as an artist. I worked with the casting of bronze, brass, aluminum, silver and gold.

PF: What was it like immigrating from Italy in the 1960s and trying to find work in the U.S.?

LC: It was a bit of a culture shock and I had difficulties with the language. I was very fortunate to find a job at Alexandria Metal Finishers after being in the U.S. for only one week.

PF: What’s the best piece of advice you were given?

LC: It was from my first boss, Tony Facciolo: “Don’t worry about your accent; people will listen to your knowledge and skill.”

PF: What was your first job and what did you learn from it?

LC: A silversmith, and I learned about stripping metals, then repair and replating.

PF: If you had $100,000 to give to a charity, which one would it be?

LC: I would want to give it personally to a poor family.

PF: What was your first car, and what is your dream car?

LC: First car was a Fiat 500 in Rome. My dream car is a 1929 Ford pickup truck.

PF: What leadership traits have helped you along the way?

LC: Honesty, hard work and being a good teacher.

PF: What did you want to be when you grew up?

LC: I hoped to be a soccer player or an air force pilot.

PF: Favorite place you’ve ever lived?

LC: Switzerland.

PF: What organization do you most admire?

LC: Aerospace companies; Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin.

PF: If you could trade jobs with anyone for a day, who would it be?

LC: A teacher in high school.

PF: Where would we find you on a typical Saturday?

LC: Riding through the countryside in my Porsche 911.

PF: Best way to keep competitive edge?

LC: Quality and commitment are most important.

PF: Personal heroes?

LC: John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr.

PF: How do you motivate people?

LC: By example.

PF: How do you motivate yourself?

LC: It’s in my genes

PF: Three greatest passions?

LC: Driving in the countryside, horse farms and wineries.

PF: Best business decision?

LC: The ones I don’t agree with myself.

PF: Worst business decision?

LC: When I listen to other people to try to go along.

PF: Words that best describes you.

LC: Pain in the neck, hardworking, friendly and self-made.