Hometown Hero works tirelessly to raise money for local causes

Joyce Mayer, the general manager of Austintown's Panera Bread, is relentless in raising money during fundraisers

Joyce Mayer is a general manager at the Panera Bread in Austintown.


AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – This week’s Hometown Hero goes above and beyond to raise money for local causes.

Joyce Mayer is a general manager at the Panera Bread in Austintown.

She’s in charge of promoting campaigns like their pink ribbon bagels, which are sold each October to benefit Joanie Abdu Comprehensive Breast Care Center. Mayer has sold about 50,000 of those bagels over the years.

Just this month, puzzle piece cookies were sold to benefit the Rich Center for Autism and Potential Development in Youngstown. Mayer has sold about 30,000 puzzle piece cookies.

“Anytime we do have a cause, you better know when you walk in the door, you’re gonna leave with a bagel or a cookie, OK?” she said.

People at Covelli Enterprises said Mayer goes above her expectations. They say what makes her so special is that she’s just naturally like this.

“Joyce is one of the most special people I have ever encountered at Panera. She embraces what Panera Bread means day to day,” said Ashlee Mauti, director of marketing for Covelli Enterprises.

Employees at the Austintown Panera Bread say she always tries to inspire them to do their best as well.

“She’s so fun and she’s so dedicated to her job. She makes it like very homey and friendly here,” said Miamee Buccella. “Everybody is really happy to work. It’s not even like a job to us.”

Mayer said there’s a very good reason that she pushes the restaurant’s campaigns so hard.

“It just forms our bond with the community and the employees and all the organizations. You need that in today’s world,” she said. “You just need the love out there, and you walk in our store and I think you can feel it.”

Mayer’s next challenge is taking on the Panerathon this summer.