High School: Ramapo High School
College: Rockland Community College
Pete Clemente is a local guy who has worked extremely hard right out of high school and has opened up three successful businesses in Congers.
He grew up "on the other side of the tracks" or in other words not the most desirable area in Pomona. Growing up where he did influenced his strive to take charge of his life.
"That experience was enough to make me realize early in life that I'd be responsible for my future, not someone else," said Pete Clemente.
After he left high school in 1988 he immediately started up Pete's Chimney and Gutter company. He cleans and repairs chimney's and gutters, power washing, roofing, tree-work, etc. Over 20 years later this business is still operating and is one of Rockland's premier chimney sweep shops.
His next business venture was 12 years later and is still thriving. Clemente's Martial Arts and Fitness Center offers mixed martial arts, kickboxing, spin, bootcamp, personal training and fitness classes to children and adults.
It took about 20 years but finally in 2005 he opened Sweet Pete's. This front end shop has an impressive menu of ice cream concoctions to satisfy almost any ice cream enthusiast.
In 2006 he got his own radio show called The No Holds Barred Show, which can be heard on Sirius 92/XM207, on Sunday nights from 8 - 10 p.m. The radio show focuses on discussing the latest in mixed martial arts.
"When Howard Stern moved to Sirius satellite six years ago, I felt I had to be part of this major rebirth. I pitched him an idea about a mixed martial arts talk radio mixed in with stupid, immature humor. He loved it but passed on my show. Sirius sports picked it up and the rest is history."
As a spinoff from his radio show he has started a clothes line called Funktionally Insane. The line is sold at MMA events nationwide and through his NHB website.
Hustle. That's the name of the game for Pete. On any given day while sitting on a bench outside the ice cream shop on Lake Road you may catch Pete pull into the parking lot in his chimney/gutter work van. He may be stopping by the shop or popping into his mixed martial arts office. He's constantly coming and going.
As a small business owner Pete employs local residents. In addition to running the business he also manages the 14 high school and college kids working at the ice cream store, the four instructors, receptionist and janitor at Clemente's, the two Pete's gutter employees and the six employees from the radio show.
Of course the goal of running a business is to make money, to build the business and support the family, but Pete is quite generous in giving back to the community.
"We have done fundraisers for relay for life, light the night, hunger-thons, kick-a-thons for Jerrys kids as well as fundraisers for breast cancer, pancreatic cancer and lymphoma."
Most of the time when he is fundraising, it is indicated in the advertisements he runs in Rockland Essentials, Smartshopper, Valpak, Rockland Magazine and online.
At the end of the day Pete acknowledges what is the driving force behind his hard work and his success.
"My wife Nicole is the main reason I do what I do. She is behind me every step of the way and encourages me and stands by me, whether I win or lose, succeed or fail. With a wife like her I can, and will, do anything I want to do."
Running four businesses, having a popular radio show, plus a family isn't an easy task to handle but Pete seems to thrive on the stress.
As Confucius said, "Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life."
Perhaps this is the secret to his success.
Keep this long time local businessman in mind next time you are in need of chimney work, looking for a workout, or want a sweet treat. And if you are into MMA, checkout his radio show on Sundays.