We're pleased to introduce you to Don Forchilli, our new Harbor Club Membership Director. If you haven't already met Don, you're in for a treat. He's an incredibly outgoing and friendly individual. We recently sat down with him to learn more about his professional background, his new job here, what he loves most about Harbor Club and some fun facts about him, too.
Tell us about your position at Harbor Club, and how long have you worked here?
My official start date as Membership Director was October 18, 2021, so I've only been here for a few weeks. Even though I've been here a short time, it's been a great experience so far.
Tell us about your professional background and what about it has prepared you for your work at Harbor Club?
My background is in hospitality -- more specifically, the food and beverage industry. I had been involved in that for 40 years. It's a profession that requires you to be a really good people person. You’ve got to be able to read them and get to know them. You’ve got to anticipate and understand needs...and deliver on them. Most importantly, you’ve to be a good listener. All of these acquired skills translate well into the work I do for Harbor Club today.
Have you discovered a favorite part of your job?
So far, I've enjoyed interacting with many people from diverse backgrounds. I get to talk to folks from all over the country. In fact, I just had a great conversation with a woman who currently resides in Albany, New York. She called to inquire about membership as she was contemplating moving to Harbor Club. My hometown is Albany, New York! So, we had a great conversation. Talking to people and cultivating warm relationships is undoubtedly a favorite part of the job for me.
What do you find most rewarding about your work at Harbor Club so far?
The work atmosphere has been most rewarding. The food and beverage industry that I came from is not exactly known for its warmth. So when I came to work here, it was a bit of a culture shock -- in a good way. Everyone gave me such a warm reception, and the team already feels like family. It's refreshing, wonderful, and certainly unique to Harbor Club.
Considering your new position at Harbor Club, what do you feel is the main benefit of being a member here?
Much like my work atmosphere, that sense of warmth and kindness extends out into the Harbor Club community. Considering my interactions with members, there is a fondness among neighbors. It's a tight-knit group of people who genuinely care about one another. All of our members feel like they belong. I've heard from many that the feeling of friendliness is what inspired them to move to Harbor Club. It's a rarity in other communities.
Out of all the events, sports, and fitness activities available at Harbor Club, which one is your favorite and why?
I actually have two favorite amenities. The first is the golf course. I love playing a great track, and Harbor Club is one of the best. The course is gorgeous and very well maintained. The layout is a ton of fun to play -- challenging yet rewarding. My second favorite amenity is the dog park at The Grove. I must admit that my dogs are my babies. I have a three-year-old purebred miniature schnauzer, and she's a total diva. We also have a Schnauzer-Yorkie mix. He's a rescue, and he's just nuts. They're both very charismatic and bring my family lots of joy.
Are there any new member events lined up for this year?
We haven't strategized around new events yet, but I'm working hard on some of our major events, like Breakfast with Santa and even the Golden Egg Hunt for Easter. In the meantime, my priority has been getting out in the community to meet as many people as possible. In fact, my first weekend here, I volunteered to work a hole at the Men's Member-Guest golf tournament. It was a great way to introduce myself to folks and get a good feel for the neighborhood.
Considering what you've experienced so far, what is your favorite part about the overall lifestyle at Harbor Club?
I probably sound like a broken record at this point, but honestly, it's the gracious, welcoming, and friendly atmosphere -- it's something unique to Harbor Club. Everyone here enjoys each other's company. They're happy to lend a hand to whoever needs it. There is respect for one another. It's refreshing to see and experience.
When not working, what do you like to do for fun? Are there any hobbies you enjoy?
I'm a runner. Both my wife and I are avid in the sport. In fact, we just finished a 10k at The Covington Cheerios Challenge. Believe it or not, I got second place in my age division (60 and above!) My wife and I try to do at least one race a month, and we're training toward doing half and full marathons again in the future.
Care to share any other interesting, fun facts about yourself?
At the age of 26, I joined The National Guard. I went to basic training at Fort Knox, Kentucky, as a tanker. I did pretty well. I'm proud to say that I was named Outstanding Soldier of the Year and received the General George S. Patton Outstanding Tanker Award.
Not only are we incredibly thankful to Don for his service, but we're also very grateful to have him as part of the Harbor Club team. Whether you'd like to learn more about Harbor Club memberships or not, Don would love to chat and get to know you. So feel free to stop by the Harbor Club offices to say hello or send a note. Either way, you'll make an incredible friend in the process.