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Owner Spotlight: Tom Mazzei

Get to Know our Owners

Cardinal was founded in 1987 by brothers Thomas and Don Mazzei and ever since, through their vision and leadership, Cardinal has been committed to delivering outstanding community management services to clients throughout the DMV region and Naples Florida area. At Cardinal, we pride ourselves on being a local company – our owners live right here in the DMV and our Executives are all Northern Virginia natives. Our local ownership invokes a sense of home and with that feeling there’s a sense of family. At Cardinal, our company is one big family and we want you to get to know our family!

Today we introduce owner and CEO Tom Mazzei, CMCA®, AMS®, PCAM®, CAM®. Tom shares his inspiration for starting the company, some of the most memorable moments of his career, what sets Cardinal apart from the competition and why the next time you see him in person you may ask him to sing for you.

What was your inspiration for starting Cardinal Management Group?

I always wanted to own my own business.  At first, I worked for another management company. Afterward, I was the “Executive Director” of a very large condominium association in Northern Virginia working directly for the Association for several years. We did not have a management firm;  just a bookkeeper, administrative and maintenance staff.  It was at this place where I honed my craft and realized the system of management we developed could be a business model for better community management on a larger scale.  With this in mind, we launched Cardinal Management Group, Inc.

Where did the company name come from?

We tossed names around for a long time prior to settling on Cardinal. It meant many things to us: Virginia state bird,  “Cardinal” as in “of prime importance, principal” and also because I had been living and working in the Cardinal Forest area of Springfield Virginia at the time. It all made sense.

How old were you when you started/joined the company?

I was 30 years old. Those were the days my friend!

The company has been in business for a very successful 33 years, what is your vision for the new decade?

The  industry is changing and has been rapidly evolving with the advent of new ways of working and new technology. Cardinal has always been in front of change, an industry leader, and the owners are committed to the idea of innovation and being the best.  One thing that will never change though, is customer service.  We are responsible for people’s most precious and valuable asset; their homes. Old fashioned, outstanding customer service will never be obsolete.  It remains the core of everything we do.

What do you believe sets Cardinal apart from the competition?

As a family owned company, we are invested in our employee’s and in our communities.  We truly care about what we do, promote professionalism and empathy in our culture, and delivery of service. That is why our motto is “We manage to make a difference”.

What is one of the most memorable or monumental moments of your career at Cardinal?

That’s a tough question because there have been many memorable moments. Oddly enough, it is the little things that mean the most. At the conclusion of a large meeting, a fairly new employee approached me to tell me how happy she was to be working at Cardinal. She had worked for many companies over the years and had never seen an ownership and senior management team of any company be more motivational and exciting to be around with such a commitment to excellence and doing right by all”.  It’s moments like this that get me up in the morning!

What is one funny or interesting fact about you that many may not know?

I love to sing and preferably in front of an audience (and I’m pretty decent at it). I was in a band as lead singer for many years and have sung at many weddings of friends and family over the years.