Tom Campion has been a St. Paul resident and partner in the food wholesaler, Superb Meats based in St. Paul, for more than 38 years. In early 2014, a simple plan for a hot dog and burger cookout evolved into a 13-week program called “Safe Summer Nights”. Ultimately, this simple plan evolved into a large joint cooperative operation between the Saint Paul Police Department and other neighborhood businesses.
Tom drew overwhelming support from local restaurateurs and businesses, including Davanni’s, Jerry’s Produce, Pearson’s Candy, PepsiCo, Mancini’s, and anonymous donors. as well as dozens of volunteers. The organizers and volunteers contributed food, beverages, candy, and personal time to serve over 10,000 meals at 10 recreation centers and parks throughout Saint Paul.
Safe Summer Night events attracted thousands of attendees and enabled the police and residents to become acquainted over a meal, rather than during times of troubles. Tom’s dedication and stewardship to Safe Summer Night brought together the community and the police to create lasting bonds of cooperation, trust, and understanding. His actions resulted in significant contributions to community relations between the residents and police. His selfless efforts went above and beyond expectations as a community citizen and as a small business owner. Tom embodies the essence of a “community” hero. The positive relationship his events fostered continue today. and St. Paul is a safer city, thanks to community heroes like Tom.