Obituary: Gene Cesario, PPAI Board Member

He Was President At Both Everlast Pen Co. And Liberty Playing Card Co.

Gene CesarioGene Cesario, a longtime industry executive, former PPAI board member and Hall of Fame inductee, died on Thursday, August 2, due to complications after heart surgery. Born in 1939, Cesario began his 47-year industry career in sales with Arthur Salm Co., and later went on to lead several companies and initiatives. He was the president at both Everlast Pen Co. and Liberty Playing Card Co. (asi/67340) and, in 2003, founded Advertising Products Suppliers, a group of industry professionals dedicated to improving operations and profitability.

"Gene was an insightful, driven industry executive," said Tim Andrews, ASI president and CEO. "He was a true professional, frequently provided me with great advice and was always there to listen."

Cesario was the recipient of numerous honors that highlighted his leadership and commitment to industry education. Among his many achievements, Cesario was inducted into the PPAI Hall of Fame in 1997. He also served on PPAI's Leadership Advisory Committee, as an ASI Education Day Facilitator and on the board of directors for the Specialty Advertising Association Southwest. "Gene never quit caring about the industry he loved so much," said Steven Meyer, PPAI chair of the board. "He leaves a legacy of great accomplishments both as a businessman and as a volunteer leader."

Apart from his service to the ad specialty industry, Cesario was a member of the Arlington Rotary Club and the Retired Men's Golf Association at Walnut Creek Country Club (TX), as well as a Republican Presidential Task Force Committee leader.

Cesario is survived by his wife of 53 years, Maria, daughters Debbie Cesario and Corine Wofford (Michael), son Paul Cesario (Tracy) and grandchildren Anthony, Andrew, Cameron, Christopher and Dominick (Molly). Funeral services will be held on Monday, August 13 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Jude's Catholic Church in Mansfield, TX. If family and friends wish, they may contribute to the Promotional Products Education Foundation in Cesario's memory.