For family-owned Arnoff Moving and Storage, community is everything.
Founded over 95 years ago by Louis Arnoff, Arnoff Moving and Storage has always operated with a people-first philosophy. Today, five generations later, with over 180 employees, the Arnoff team attributes its successful corporate culture to employee empowerment, and a robust community impact.
With each generation of the Arnoff family, the concept of giving back has meant something different, but for all generations it has been a core value both within and beyond the business.
For Louis Arnoff, it meant extending a hand – and a job - to people that wouldn’t otherwise have found employment. He was known for treating employees with kindness and respect and valuing each contribution, no matter how small. When Richard and Phyllis took over the company they continued to expound on the concept of giving people an opportunity to help themselves through training and jobs with good benefits. They focused on returning Vietnam veterans, those without high school diplomas, and local residents who otherwise were unskilled.
When Richard and Phyllis gave the reins over to their sons Marc and Michael in 1980s, not only did the concept of community impact expand, but so did the community itself.
As Arnoff Moving and Storage began opening new locations in Massachusetts, Florida and Malta, NY, Marc and Michael began to think about new ways to give back.
In Florida, Marc became involved in the Martin County Sheriff’s “Say No to Drugs” task force. Every Christmas he drives Santa to the children’s hospital and throughout the Ft. Pierce city center in an Arnoff truck, bringing joy to the families who need it most.
At the helm of Arnoff Moving and Storage headquarters in New York, Michael and Lisa have put service at the forefront of their family and business life. Whether it’s the Lion’s Club or Little League baseball, the mantra at Arnoff Moving to management is “get involved.” They, and various members of the Arnoff family and extended team, have served on the Chamber of Commerce board and committee, they have lead teams for the Heart Association Walk, and they have led mission trips to Appalachia to provide warmer and safer homes. They also continued a proud tradition of supporting their employee’s community involvement with financial contributions to their selected organizations.
Both Michael and Lisa believe that the best way to encourage others to make a difference is with their own example. Michael uses his knowledge and resources to facilitate projects that include shipping sporting goods to children in Africa through the “Kicking Back” program. He’s been pivotal in providing storage for the Vassar-Haiti project, a nonprofit organization that promotes Haitian art, fosters sustainable development in Haiti, and mentors student and community volunteers in the principles and practice of global citizenship.Most recently, Michael spearheaded a project that entailed moving bolts of fabric for Unshattered, a local organization that creates sustainable employment for those who have no safe community to return to after recovery from addiction and/or trauma.
Having been married to Michael for 35 years, Lisa’s giving nature has had a strong influence on how the company interacts with the communities it works with. Lisa has been involved in the Jewish Community Center for years in a multitude of roles, and recently served as a volunteer apprentice at the Poughkeepsie Farm Project. She is especially proud of her work with the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation. As Chairman Emerita, and head of their annual Spring Brunch for the last 15 years, Lisa led the charge that raised nearly $1.5 million dollars for the Foundation, which aims to fund support services and outreach for people affected by breast cancer within the nine counties of the Hudson Valley, New York.
As the fifth generation of Arnoff’s begin to grow their own families and take on professional leaderhship roles, their interpretation of service is unfolding within new and different communities. Daniel, Craig and Nicolas have each followed in their family tradition and are heavily involved in the day to day business of Arnoff Moving and Storage. Each of them works closely with local Chambers of Commerce, including those in Dutchess County, the Capital District and Rensselaer County. They have also taken on personal service projects, ranging from Daniel’s position as a board member of the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum, to Nicolas’s work as a volunteer logistics coordinator for the Special Olympics NY. Craig oversees the warehousing and logistics for over 100,000 pounds of canned food items collected throughout NY’s Capital District and distributed to families in need. Brian Arnoff, Chef and Owner of Beacon-based restaurants Kitchen Sink and Meyer’s Olde Dutch, has been a long time supporter of Family Services going back to his time in high school when he worked with Mel Garrett to establish the Bright Nights program. He also works with various nonprofits throughout the year to support sustainable farming, food justice and education.
The Arnoff family feels especially lucky to count Emma, Jamie, Amanda and Lauren among them as partners and wives to their young men. Each has demonstrated a likewise passion to give back to their communities by helping to manage large not-for-profits, counseling at risk youth, and employing an entrepreneurial spirit to help heal those around them.
The entire Arnoff family feels blessed to be presented this award and share it with their extended family both at the company and in the community to all the lives they’ve touched.