Vice President / Director of Operations & HACCP Coordinator
Jon Pearlman thought his future was amid the bright lights of the big city, but after a few years of neckties, skyscrapers, endless crowds and honking horns, Jon found himself back where he was happiest – just outside the Beltway, immersed in the family fish business.
Jon was taught the value of hard work early in life. In high school, Jon would make a point of getting home early on the weekends so he could get to work at NAFCO, his father’s fish warehouse by 1 a.m. Here he began learning the business from the ground up – acquiring invaluable first-hand experiences.
When Jon headed off to Rider University to major in public relations and fine arts, he thought he had cleaned his last fish and hosed down his last workstation. Upon graduation, he joyfully packed his bags to start his new job as a storyboard artist on Madison Avenue. Then when Jon’s company downsized, he took the opportunity to return home leaving the city behind and moving back to the area with its green lawns and cricket-filled nights.
Jon rejoined his father at NAFCO, and set out to learn every aspect of the operation. Jon was happy to be able to provide his father with a skill the company previously had to outsource: advertising. Jon took over the marketing and design for the company. All the while, he still donned rubber boots and gloves and got down and dirty with the rest of the staff.
In 2005 Jon made the move over to NAFCO’s sister company, Congressional Seafood. Once again he worked his way up the corporate ladder, this time as a salesman. In a few short years Jon was able to secure business from a number of DC’s finest restaurants, hotels and country clubs. He also expanded the businesses delivery area to New Jersey where they service one of the leading gourmet supermarket chains. One of Jon’s proudest accomplishments at Congressional was starting the Seafood Traceability program where they use QR codes to trace the finished seafood products back to their origins in the water. He also serves as the company’s HACCP Coordinator where he is responsible for dealing with the government inspectors keeping Congressional up to date with all the regulations set by the FDA.
Today, as Vice President and Director of Operations of Congressional Seafood, the biggest part of Jon’s job is on the telephone – talking to suppliers, customers, employees and everyone in between. Fishermen and chefs keep odd hours, and the weather doesn’t keep any hours at all, so Jon has to be within arm’s reach of his phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to stay on top of his goal of providing unparalleled customer service.
With his phone tucked safely in his pocket, Jon sometimes sneaks away from work to drive car pools, attend his son’s baseball games or paint with his daughter, who has inherited his artistic flair. When time, Jon and his wife can be found in area nightclubs, fueling his passion for live music of all kinds.