Linda and Claudio Marini were the co-owners of Barbarini Alimentari and Mercato, a restaurant and market in the Historic South Street Seaport area which were totally destroyed by Superstorm Sandy. The Marinis live nearby in the financial district with their three children and had to vacate their family home for a period of time. While a lot of neighbors and businesses struggled to pick up the pieces since Oct. 29, 2012, few had as difficult a time as the Marinis. They met with Business Advisor Rawle Brown and reviewed their options, including the city and state programs set up for victims of the storm. Due to the destruction of infrastructure and a new corporate structure, they determined that rebuilding at the same location was not feasible, but they were committed to staying in the financial district. With gritty determination, the Marinis chose to rebuild and signed a lease for a ground floor spot in the high-rise building at the corner of Ann St. and Theatre Alley. Their new restaurant, Da Claudio, opened its doors in November 2014 and has has been a tremendous success. The couple said their three children pitched in, willingly giving up allowances and vacations. “As a family we made sacrifices,” Linda says. “We saw this challenge as a life lesson for our children - we needed to set an example for them. We are a small business, essentially a mom and pop shop.” The SBDC helped the Marinis secure over $750K in funding from the New York Business Development Corporation. Da Claudio will give the Marinis another chance to give back to their community.