It’s not easy to surprise Pat Caracciolo of Pat the Dog, but somehow we managed to do just that at the May Chamber Breakfast when City of Minneola Vice Mayor, Pam Serviss, presented him with the Ann Dupee Gem of the Hills Award. The award was developed to honor residents or organizations who are making significant contributions to the South Lake County community through their time, actions, talents and dedication.

Caracciolo has arguably one of the most diverse backgrounds out there having worked with a variety of animals including killer whales, polar bears, parrots, and American bald eagles. Currently, he focuses his energy on his successful dog boarding and grooming business aptly named “Pat the Dog.”

In addition to his successful business, Caracciolo is the chair of Project Scholars, which has awarded more than $800,000 to more than 400 students since 2003.  He also serves as the incoming chair for the South Lake Chamber of Commerce and continually sponsors the Chamber and Community Foundation of South Lake’s Outstanding Student Leader Award. If that’s not enough, he helped sponsor Paws for Peace Walk for Harbor House of Central Florida and continually donates and contributes to Future Farmers of America.

Congratulations, Pat!

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