History of Fedele's Chocolates
Fedele’s Chocolates first opened its doors in Pembroke, Massachusetts at “Pembroke Crossing” on December 17th, 1987. From the start, our commitment was to provide superior confections and exceptional customer service. This still continues to be our top priority for our family owned and operated shops.
Ron Fedele grew up on the North end of Brockton, MA two houses down from the Gowell family. Richard and Evelyn Gowell employed Ron at their chocolate shop from 1966 to1972 and their love for the confectionery business rubbed off onto Ron. Although Ron pursued a career in plastics extrusion, his passion to one day own a chocolate shop stayed with him throughout the years.
Kathie O’Brien met Ron in 1975 and they married in 1976. Kathie worked as a secretary at the Foxboro Company and had some retail experience, having worked in the food service industry and Sears through her high school years. Together they dreamed about what their chocolate shop might look like and from the late 70’s they looked for potential areas to open a shop. They attended trade shows and took business courses to further their plan. Mr. Gowell helped Kathie and Ron buy their showcases and kitchen equipment long before Fedele’s Chocolates had opened its doors. He even drove with Ron out to Schenectady, New York to check out a shop that was up for sale, but Richard and Evelyn evaluated and advised Ron about other considered locations in Norwell and Walpole. Their influence and mentoring had a huge influence in the creation of Fedele’s Chocolates. Ron and Kathie’s goal was to open where there were no chocolate shops close by and they finally found a great spot in Pembroke which met all their criteria. The lease was signed in September of 1987 and the work began.
Kathie and Ron had two sons at this point, Joshua (7) and Shawn (5). They began with Kathie opening the shop at 10 am every day while Ron continued working his regular job at the Barbour Corporation in Brockton. Kathie would homeschool the boys while packing the chocolates and Ron would arrive around 2 pm everyday to cook and dip. They hired their first employee in May of 1988. The shop moved in 1990 down the street to its present location. It was actually a customer who told Ron about the shop at 95 Church St. She thought it would be a better location and she was right.
In 1990 Kathie and Ron had their 3rd child, Rebekah. All three kids have worked at the shop at one time or another and Shawn continues to work side by side with Ron helping the business, being one of the head chocolatiers, as well as teaching staff and his Dad a few new tricks.
Our staff has been our most valuable asset over the years. We have had over 150 employees who have served our customers and we are extremely grateful for their individual efforts and sacrificing spirit throughout the many years. Please be sure to come in and say hi to them. We’re sure they’ll make you understand why we so appreciate them and their dedication to Fedele’s Chocolates.
Since 2004 we have won fifteen awards for “Best Candy Shop on the South Shore”, a distinction we are very proud and honored to have.
With the Lords help, this is just the beginning of what we hope will become a long history of a dream come true.