Boating Community Mourns Bob Roscioli

Founder of Roscioli Donzi Yachts dies of Covid-19.
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Bob Roscioli, founder of Fort Lauderdale’s Roscioli Yachting Center and Bradenton’s Roscioli Donzi Yachts, died from Covid-19. He was 78 years old.

The impact that Roscioli had on the marine business is incalculable, judging from a guestbook on Roscioli Yachting Center’s website. Remembrances are coming in from not just South Florida, but also the Caribbean and from businesses that go well beyond the marine industry.

Roscioli was hands-on and involved in every step of the boatbuilding process.

Roscioli was hands-on and involved in every step of the boatbuilding process.

Most seem to mention not only his kindness and wisdom but also his leadership and drive for perfection. And many spoke of his mantra that seemed to sum up his outlook on life: “Today’s the day!”

"He was the Vince Lombardi of boatyards," vice president of operations for Roscioli Yachting Center Shawn Schmoll told South Florida Business Journal. “He made people better by being in their lives."

Fort Lauderdale’s Roscioli Yachting Center.

Fort Lauderdale’s Roscioli Yachting Center.

Schmoll and others said that Roscioli was among the first to arrive at the facility each morning and often walked the grounds, ensuring teams had all they needed to complete a job. His reputation for hiring and mentoring those with checkered pasts — as well as veterans — is well-known.

Roscioli began a career in the marine business in 1962 and developed a skillset for painting that earned him a client list that included some of the world’s most renowned boatbuilders. His reputation was not only sought after by builders — paint companies sought his acumen and knowledge of application techniques, and Roscioli was said to be the first to use both Awlgrip and Alexseal on a hull.

He founded Roscioli Yachting Center in the late 1960s, eventually leasing the land where the facility now sits after convincing the bank he was worth the $3 million risk.

Roscioli is survived by his wife of 51 years, Sharon; children, Robert and Heather; and three grandchildren.

Jeff Moser reporting courtesy of our sister publication Soundings Trade Only.

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