August 19, 2017

Townie Blogger Leonardo Pushing Positive

2012 EPHS Grad Dominic Leonardo

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Have you come across a blog called 'Townie Brands' while you surf the internet? In this era of social media there are many blogs, posts or email blasts. Generally the tone of many social media posts is negative or branded by some as "fake news." One local blogger is trying to change that trend. 2012 East Providence High School graduate Dominic Leonardo is the creator of Townie Brands.

"Townie Brands tells the story of local businesses, entrepreneurs, and nonprofit organizations in East Providence through video, text, and photos," said Leonardo. In a recent interview with The Reporter, Leonardo explains that his goal is to promote the good, mostly regarding local business. If the young Leonardo isn't part of the local Chamber of Commerce, he should be. "My goal is to showcase innovative high-quality products and services provided in East Providence. I started writing about businesses that personify Townie Pride in November of 2016 as a response to a rise in negative content posted on social media and in the news about our city. I look for businesses and organizations providing quality products and services while giving back to the community," explains Leonardo.

Although the big box type stores are prevalent in the market place, Leonardo believes that people value the intimacy and exceptional customer service small businesses provide. He has done his homework for sure. "There are 96,688 small businesses in Rhode Island employing 223,651 workers. Over half of the state’s private workforce is employed by a small business. The natural tendency to cheer for the underdog has lead me to explore these small businesses and local entrepreneurs to discover the types of goods and services provided by my neighbors who are bold enough to compete with multinational corporations. My blog provides a platform for locals to learn more about their local small businesses, entrepreneurs and nonprofit organizations," Leonardo explains.

After EPHS Leonardo then graduated from Providence College in 2016. He majored in Economics and minored in Finance. He does all of his blogging after hours and independent from his job. "I work in the financial services industry but my employer said I can't use their name in any way for my blog. I work on the blog after work and on weekends. I do not receive any compensation from the organizations or individuals about which I post. The purpose of my blog is to provide a platform for small businesses to connect with our community and to promote local entrepreneurs," he added.

Much of what Leonardo does come from his community pride. "Some of the most innovative and quality products and services in the State of Rhode Island are created and provided right here in the City of East Providence. Townie Brands shines a light on East Providence businesses, entrepreneurs, and nonprofit organizations that personify Townie Pride. I strive to provide a platform for individuals to connect and learn more about their local businesses and entrepreneurs," adds Leonardo. His posts have highlighted small businesses, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits that do businesses in East Providence.

This young Riverside resident and Townie truly believes that locals would like to support community businesses and want to invest in neighborhood businesses. He doesn't receive any compensation from the organizations or individuals about which he posts. "The purpose of my blog is to connect local business with the public. That's all." Readers can check out his Facebook page - Townie Brands - and read about all the EP businesses and entrepreneurs that Leonardo has highlighted. Readers of Townie Brands can also email suggestions for their favorite local businesses. "The idea is simple. The more we know about our local organizations the more inclined we are to support them, creating a vibrant East Providence economy. Discover the local businesses you drive by every day. I hope these stories inspire locals to support small businesses with whom we share a sincere interest in the welfare of our community," said Leonardo. For more information, go to http://www.towniebrands.com/

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