Debbie Safko is a native of St. Petersburg. She graduated from Northeast High School and received her degree in Interior Design from Florida State University where she was also president of Delta Delta Delta Sorority. After graduation Debbie moved to Texas where she married her husband of 26 years. They had two sons. In 2009 Debbie’s world turned upside down when her husband suddenly and unexpectedly passed away. Six weeks later her eldest son chose to end his life. Devastated, Debbie liquidated one business and sold the other along with their properties and moved back to St Pete to begin a new life.
It was then she bought a Curves Fitness Center for Women. She grew the business over the next five years then sold it. During this time, she married her current love and husband, Mark Safko. Together they have three sons. In 2019 Debbie and Mark were offered the opportunity to purchase Paciugo Gelato and Caffe from the original owners. They did so with great pleasure, Debbie currently operates the business while Mark continues his 28 year career as a Risk Loss Specialist for the Mahaffey Apartment Company. They have been blessed with four grandchildren in the past 3 ½ years.
She has been an advocate for suicide prevention, so she started the St. Pete Out of the Darkness Walk to Fight Suicide in 2010 and was a charter board member for the Tampa Bay Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. She is also a Committee Chairperson for Mainsail Art Festival and Recording Secretary for our St. Pete Women’s Chamber of Commerce. Debbie enjoys gardening, taking walks, riding her bicycle, fishing from her kayak, her dogs and attending church.
You can learn more about Paciugo Gelato and Caffe here: https://paciugostpete.com/
May Guest Speaker, Debbie Safko
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