Former business leader passes away

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Dr. John D'Ambrosio

MYRTLE BEACH – If you mentioned the nickname ‘Dr. Johnny’ in the area business community, you automatically thought of Dr. John D’Ambrosio, the longtime president of the Orange County Chamber of Commerce.

The man who led the business community for some 30 years died on Friday, November 19. He was 71.

D’Ambrosio and his wife, Marilyn, had moved to the Myrtle Beach area several years ago, but retirement wasn’t for him. He was hired as president of a regional Better Business Bureau.

He was president of the Orange County Chamber of Commerce until his retirement in 2014. But, he was a leader in the business community long before.

At one point, there were two regional chambers of commerce in Orange County – the Eastern Orange Chamber and the Orange County Chamber. It was D’Ambrosio, as president of the Eastern Orange Chamber, who orchestrated the merger of the two into one countywide business advocacy group and retained the presidency

In good economic times, he boasted the unified chamber had more members than any other chamber in the Hudson Valley.

“John was a great personal friend and was great for the business community,” said his longtime friend, Alan Seidman, resident of the Construction Contractors Association of the Hudson Valley.

“John was a longtime friend and a tremendous asset to the small business community in Orange County,” said County Executive Steve Neuhaus. “John proudly developed the Orange County Chamber of Commerce into a successful organization that is widely respected by its peers and members. I am deeply saddened by his passing and my thoughts and prayers are with his family.”