Tom Golisano will lead Columbus Day Parade in NYC

ROCHESTER N.Y. (WHEC) — Rochester-area philanthropist and Paychex founder Tom Golisano will lead the 2022 Columbus Day parade on New York City’s Fifth Avenue, as the grand marshall.

The parade in NYC celebrates Italian-American heritage and culture and is the U.S.’s largest Columbus Day celebration. Golisano, who is of Italian descent, will lead 100 marching groups including bands and floats.

The parade will begin on Oct. 10 at 11:30 a.m. Christopher Loiacono, president of the Columbus Citizens Foundation, said Golisano was chosen because of his philanthropy work.

“Tom’s personal philanthropy and the work of the Golisano Foundation have greatly benefited the state of New York, and we are thrilled
to have him lead New York City’s Columbus Day Parade this fall,” Loiacono said.

Golisano has provided funding to three children’s hospitals, including the Golisano Children’s Hospital in Rochester. In 1985, he founded the Golisano Foundation, which has grown into one of the world’s largest foundations for providing grants to help people with intellectual disabilities.

Golisano has also provided funding to construct facilities at local colleges, including the Rochester Insititute of Technology, Nazareth College, and Roberts Wesleyan.

Past grand marshalls at the parade have included Frank Sinatra and Sophia Loren. Golisano said he’s excited to celebrate Italian-Americans through his role in the parade.

“It’s an incredible feeling to join the great Italians and Italian-Americans who have served as Grand Marshal in the past,” Golisano said.

The Columbus Day Parade will be televised by New York City television station WABC starting at noon.