New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce Regional Report

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FALL 2009


THE NEW NORMAL The Changing Customer-Business Paradigm By Kelley Granger


he way markets consume products and services is being profoundly changed by a convergence of influences. While the economic hardships of the past year have played a large part in the transformation of our collective behavior as customers, innovative uses of communications technology and a growing eco-consciousness are also among the catalysts spurring change. Perhaps, at the root of this revolution, our ideals are changing. We aren’t just looking to save a buck, we’re looking for true value and an authentic relationship. We’re seeking businesses that have a bigger picture of social and environmental responsibility in mind. We want integrity and candor from our merchants and salespeople. We want to be smart about how we spend our money—we’ll stretch each dollar as far as it can go and expect that business will still provide us with above-average service and options. In order to stay relevant, businesses will have to accept these terms as a “new normal,” a restructured set of customer expectations that will shift business interactions in a new direction. Continued on p. 12



A Good Incentive


The Bottom Line


Decanting Wine Wisdom


Member Profiles: Self-Improvement

The CPAs of Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell offer tax tips at the business luncheon on November 18.

Part-time unemployment, Sen. Gillibrand pushes for federal funds for manufacturing, and more.

An interview with Kevin Zraly, founder of Windows on the World Wine School.

Lifebridge Sanctuary, Jai Ma Yoga, be clutter FREE, Vicki Koenig






C2G is the Hudson Valley’s premier environmental professionals for tank & environmental services. Recommended and trusted by school officials, attorneys, realtors, property managers, residential homeowners and insurance companies. • Tank Removals/Abandonments • Well Installation & Monitoring • Soil & Water Remediation • Petroleum Facility Compliance Audits • 24 Hour Emergency Spill Response • Water, Soil, Air Testing/Monitoring • Geoprobe Services • Phase I and II Site Assessments • Liquid/Soil Transportation & Disposal • Oil/Water Separator Cleanings • Vac Truck Services


Foam abandonment is an economical, approved method of tank closure when removal is not an option and no leaking of the tank has occurred.

CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS 165 Sherwood Avenue Farmingdale, NY 11735 Phone: 631-414-7757 Fax: 631-843-6331

NEW HUDSON VALLEY LOCATION 83 South Putt Corners Road New Paltz, NY 12561 Phone: 845-255-4900 Fax: 845-255-4909 2


Letter from JOYCE MINARD


More than low prices, today’s customers want and expect emotional value and consistent quality.

{ Michael Gold / The Corporate Image


o matter what sector of the economy you call home, some aspect of the “new normal” applies to you. With the causes and effects of the economic downturn, ideas about accountability and value have changed for everyone. The decisions we make today, from household budgeting to capital projects, must be made in light of these new ideas. These are strange times, but they are exciting times, ripe for creative choices, a rediscovery of fundamental needs and an examination of what’s truly important in our lives—family, health, happiness, community. The “new normal” applies to each of us in a different way. Questions like “Do I really need this?” take on a more profound meaning as we decide what is important to us and begin to make a place for ourselves in this current economic climate. Value, or relative worth, has displaced cost as the name of the game these days; “How much is it worth to me?” is a deeper, more topical question than “How much does it cost?” and it is the essence of what drives the “new normal” in our everyday lives. Relationship building is a key component of modern economic survival, and the best relationships are built upon a foundation of trust. Businesses and organizations must work harder than ever to secure that trust from consumers who, for good reason, approach the marketplace with a healthy amount of skepticism. More than low prices, today’s customers want and expect emotional value and consistent quality. William J. McEwen, a global practice leader at the Gallup Organization and author of Married to the Brand, sums this idea up nicely in a recent blog post for Gallop Management Journal: “Price is only one promise, and, long term, it may not speak to the consumers’ emotional needs or their desire for self-expression.” We are proud of our mission to serve our membership and the economic health of the

40TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION Events in the planning include a trip aboard the Catskill Dinner Train and an Epicurean Farm Tour of small town farms and historic sites in the heart of the Catskills. For information on celebration events, email John Novi at


Hudson Valley; that mission is, and always has been, at the core of everything we do here at the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce. Our relationship with you, our members, is the most important factor in our pursuit of new ways to maximize value and meet your emotional needs and that relationship must work both ways. We urge you to get in touch with us by phone, by email, or in person to let us know what you need, what you want, and what you expect from us in the “new normal.” We look forward to hearing from you.


3 Restaurants






Route 213, High Falls 845-687-7777 for hours





Mike Arteaga’s Health & Fitness Centers

60 Park Lane Highland, NY 12528 (518) 947-6644 / fax (518) 947-6796 Contact: Julie Slaughter E-mail: Website: Category: Insurance Services

15 Cottage Lane Rosendale, NY 12472 (845) 943-6442 / fax (845) 943-6443 Contact: Carol Preziosi E-mail: Website: Category: Embroidery

3425 Route 9W Highland, NY 12528 (845) 691-6161 Contact: Mike Arteaga E-mail: Website: Category: Health/Fitness Center

Ash-N-Oak Home Improvements

Garvin Fine Art

Minard & Puglielle, PLLC

Contact: Alex Garvin E-mail: Website: Category: Artists

3605 Route 9W Highland, NY 12528 (845) 834-2555 / fax (845) 834-2559 Contact: Jason Minard E-mail: Website: Category: Attorneys—General Practice

19 Hummel Road New Paltz, NY 12561 (845) 750-5330 / fax (845) 633-8283 Contact: Peter Silva E-mail: Category: Contractors—Home Improvement

Blue Stone Cottage Bed & Breakfast 440 Mohonk Road High Falls, NY 12440 (845) 687-7717 Contact: Heidi Racioppo E-mail: Website: Category: Bed and Breakfasts, Cottages

Blustein, Shapiro, Rich & Barone, LLP 90 Crystal Run Road, Suite 409 Middltown, NY 10941 (845) 692-0011 / fax (845) 695-1397 Contact: James Yastion, Esq. E-mail: Website: Category: Attorneys—General Practice, Attorneys— Estates & Elder Law

Brewer Land Surveying 275 Fair Street, PO Box 3836 Kingston, NY 12402 (845) 339-1487 / fax (845) 339-1488 Contact: Tess Brewer E-mail: Category: Real Estate/Land Surveyors

Casa Villa Restaurant 395 Albany Avenue Kingston, NY 12401 (845) 331-7646 / fax (845) 331-6846 Contact: Jose and Casandra E-mail: Website: Category: Restaurants

Catskill Mountain Multisport

George Tukel Contact: George Tukel E-mail: Category: Economic Development

Health Alliance of the Hudson Valley 105 Mary’s Avenue Kingston, NY 12401 (845) 334-3151 / fax (845) 334-4781 Contact: Sylvia Murphy E-mail: Website: Category: Hospitals

Hudson Valley Tent 249 Hill Avenue Montgomery, NY 12549 (845) 778-3175 / fax (845) 913-1510 Contact: John Pergolizi E-mail: Website: Category: Rentals/Tents & Party Supplies

Hunter and Janke Plumbing & Heating PO Box 7118 Newburgh, NY 12550 (845) 895-1020 / fax (845) Contact: Bill Janke E-mail: Category: Plumbers

Indian Ridge Preserve 500 Crescent Avenue Highland, NY 12528 (914) 474-1332 / fax (845) 691-2485 Contact: Leonard Auchmoody E-mail: Website: Category: Inns & Lodges

246 Main Street, Suite 15 New Paltz, NY 12561 (845) 633-8720 / fax (845) 633-8720 Contact: Greg Sautner E-mail: Website: Category: Bicycle Sales & Repairs, Sports —Triathlon

Ingraham Shovel Co.

Cranston & Dolan, CPAs

Juice Plus

280 Rt. 299, Suite #4 Highland, NY 12528 (845) 834-2701 / fax (845) 834-2702 Contact: David R. Dolan, CPA E-mail: Website: Category: Accountants


514 Plutarch Road Highland, NY 12528 (845) 255-7778 Contact: Dan Ingraham E-mail: Category: Contractors—Excavation 1 Ridge Road New Paltz, NY 12561 845-255-8545 Contact: Tom Losee E-mail: Website: Category: Nutrition/Weight Loss

Nu-Cavu 857 Plains Road Wallkill, NY 12589 (845) 895-9000 Contact: Carmela Vitoro E-mail: Website: Category: Restaurants, Catering

Prism Solar Technologies 180 South Street Highland, NY 12528 (845) 883-4200 Contact: Stephen Filler E-mail: Website: Category: Manufacturers

Psychological Rehabilitation Services 65 Chestnut Hill Road Stone Ridge, NY 12484 (2nd office in Hauppauge, Long Island, NY) (845) 687-7067 / fax (845) 687-7067 Contact: Kendra Haven, PhD, Dr. Cristine Svetina E-mail: Category: Psychologist

Star Real Clothing Corp. 26 North Chestnut Street New Paltz, NY 12561 (845) 255-6868 Contact: Tami Friedman E-mail: Category: Clothing

Terri Coonrad Hershkowitz, NP.-PC 370 Violet Avenue Poughkeepsie, NY 12601 (845) 471-1807 / fax (845) 471-1815 Contact: Terri Coonrad Hershkowitz, PC E-mail: Category: Mental Health Services

Tress Olay 101 Main Street New Paltz, NY 12561 (845) 255-1575 / fax (845) 255-0353 Contact: Amanda Potts E-mail: Category: Beauty Services

Members who joined as of August 15.







The New Normal The Changing Customer-Business Paradigm The financial dislocations of the past year have created a new environment for business, one in which restructured customer expectations are paramount.


A Good Incentive Year-end Tax Tips and Credit Highlights


Photo Essay: Taste of New Paltz


Legislation & News Affecting Your Business


Event Spotlight: Kevin Zraly Business Luncheon


Event Spotlights: Golf Outing/Bomb-Proof Business Seminar


The CPAs of Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell will offer year-end tax advice at the November 18 business luncheon at the Ship Lantern Inn.

Photographer Teresa Horgan spent the day chronicling the 19th annual event at the Ulster County Fairgrounds on September 13. A larger selection of images can be viewed on the Chamber’s Facebook site!

New York State offers employers a “Shared Work” program to ease unemployment, Sen. Gillibrand pushes for federal money to spur manufacturing, New Yorkers are paying high rates for education and health care.

Windows on the World Wine School founder Kevin Zraly talks with Regional Report about wine prior to his October 14 business luncheon at Mohonk.

On October 3, the Chamber will host its 24th annual golf outing at the Hudson Valley Resort and Spa. On November 20, the Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation presents the latest in its professional development series.

Member Profiles: Self-Improvement Regional Report checks in with Lifebridge Sanctuary, Jai Ma Yoga, be clutter FREE, and Vicki Koenig, MS, RD, CDN.

Paint Brushes Pastels Canvas Easels Sketchpads Journals Stationery Handmade Papers Scrapbook Materials Sculpey Craft Kits Knitting Supplies Felt Greeting Cards Precut Mats Ready Made Frames Matboard Glue Dover Books Balsa Wood Rulers Office Supplies Novelties FALL HOURS:

(August 24th - May 17th)

MON – FRI 10 AM to 6 PM SAT 10 AM to 5 PM SUN 12 PM to 4 PM SUMMER HOURS: (May 18th - August 23rd)


Recent Chamber Events


Upcoming Events


Member Updates


Member Renewals


Membership Matters

MON – SAT 10 AM to 5 PM SUN 12 PM to 4 PM 83 Main Street New Paltz, NY 12561 P 845.255.9902 F 845.255.1016 [ ]



NPRCoC BOARD AND STAFF Board Officers CHAIR Ernie VanDeMark Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp.

Chris Drouin Beyond Wealth Management ND 2 VICE CHAIR Craig Shankles PDQ Printing and Graphics TREASURER Mindi Haynes Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell, LLP, CPAs FINANCIAL ADVISOR Jerry Luke Fox Hill B&B 1 ST VICE CHAIR


Paul O’Neill Attorney at Law

Board of Directors

Frank Curcio Clear Channel Radio of the Hudson Valley Helen Gutfreund LMT, Bodymind Massage Therapy Constance Harkin Ulster Savings Richard Heyl de Ortiz Historic Huguenot Street Kay Hoiby Free Fall Express/dba: Blue Sky Ranch Dr. David Ness Certified Chiropractic Sports Practitioner Kathleen Packard KathodeRay Media Diane Reeder The Queens Galley Shelley Turk Rocking Horse Ranch Susan Van De Bogart St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital Helise Winters SUNY New Paltz (CRREO) EMERITUS MEMBERS

Robert Leduc Mohonk Mountain House Rick Lewis Riverside Bank Margaret McDowell Bermac Home Aides, Inc. Ofc. Scott Schaffrick New Paltz Police Department Sue VanVoorhis M&T Bank


Thank you to everyone who went above and beyond in our move to 257 Main Street. The hard work and assistance of all those who volunteered their time, expertise, and services is deeply appreciated, as are the many members and friends whose sincere good wishes helped us through.

The New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce is a distinguished member of:

American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) Chamber Alliance of New York State (CANYS) The Business Council of New York State, Inc. (BCNYS) Mid-Hudson Pattern for Progress Southern Ulster Alliance Business Marketing Association—Hudson Valley Chapter New York’s Tech Valley Chamber Coalition Hudson Valley Regional Coalition (One Valley—One Voice) Who We Are

The New Paltz Regional Chamber, organized in 1900, is an active and trusted voice in the regional business and residential community that forges strong relationships between businesses and residents and promotes growth, prosperity, a sense of local pride, and a high quality of life in the Hudson Valley region.

Joyce Minard President Christine Crawfis Director of Marketing & Communications Cathy Hyland Membership Director Lucy Paradies Assistant Director of Finance & Membership Janet Nurre Communications & Programs Administrator

The newly formed Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz aids and augments the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce’s current slate of successful educational programs. The Foundation envisions a comprehensive program of educational activities and scholarships, all geared toward educating and supporting the community.

Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz Board Members

Regional Report is published quarterly by the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Chamber Staff

Sally Cross SUNY New Paltz Foundation VICE CHAIR Kathy Ferrusi Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union SECRETARY Joyce Minard New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce BOARD MEMBER Teresa Thompson Main Street Bistro CHAIR


Information in this publication was carefully compiled to ensure maximum accuracy. However, the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce cannot guarantee the correctness of all information provided herein. Readers noting inaccurate information should contact the Chamber with corrections and updates. @2009 New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without the written permission of the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce and Luminary Publishing is strictly prohibited.






1 Ulster County Executive Michael P. Hein cuts the ribbon to officially open the New Paltz Park and Ride on June 10. The new park and ride is located on Route 32 North across from Stewart’s Shops, on land leased from Michael Rizza of New Paltz Auto. 2 Attendees enjoy a gorgeous evening of networking and gourmet hors d’oeuvres at the NPRCoC August After-Hours Mixer on August 13 at Depuy Canal House. The mixer celebrated the Canal House’s 40th anniversary in its landmark location in High Falls. 3 Joyce Minard, NPRCoC president and Maryann Genco enjoy the Hudson River view from Buttermilk Falls Inn and Spa, featured on the Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz 6th Annual New Paltz Regional Garden Tour. The Garden Tour, held on July 12, featured gardens on or near the Hudson River as part of the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial celebration.



UPCOMING EVENTS Saturday, October 3

Wednesday, October 14

24th Annual Golf Outing @ Hudson Valley Resort and Spa, Kerhonkson

Business Luncheon @ Mohonk Mountain House, New Paltz, featuring Kevin Zraly

Play golf and support community outreach! Eighteen holes of golf will be followed by a gourmet barbeque, featuring a sensational silent auction and awards presentation. Proceeds of the Golf Outing benefit the Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz Educational Scholarship Fund and the New Paltz Youth Center. Hole-in-one prizes include $10,000, a Callaway Big Bertha iron set, a Sharp LCD flatscreen TV and round-trip airfare for two. Golfers are invited to participate in foursomes or as individuals and non-players are invited to attend the awards dinner, where prizes will be awarded for a putting contest, the longest drive, and other demonstrations of golfing skill on Hudson Valley Resort and Spa’s par 3 course.

Kevin Zraly is the founder and teacher of the immensely popular Windows on the World Wine School, graduating over 19,000 students since its inception 32 years ago. He has been teaching wine for over 30 years and has studied wine-making techniques in California and all the great wine regions of Europe.

Time: Registration and continental breakfast begin at 10:00 am; shotgun start at 11:00 am; cocktail hour, auction, and dinner begins at 4:00 pm Place: Hudson Valley Resort and Spa, 400 Granite Rd., Kerhonkson Cost: $80 per player, $300 per foursome (includes dinner, auction and cocktail hour); $35 for dinner, auction and cocktail hour only. Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail

Fall Business Card Exchange @ Performance Sports and Wellness, New Paltz

Thursday, October 8

After-Hours Mixer @ Ireland Corners Automotive Group, Gardiner Acknowledged to have the best-appointed service waiting area in the Hudson Valley, our October after-hours mixer at Ireland Corners Automotive Group is the perfect vehicle for high-octane networking. Time: 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Place: Ireland Corners Automotive Group, 600 State Route 208, Gardiner Cost: Complimentary to members, $5 nonmembers Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail 8

Sponsor: Riverside Bank Time: 12:00 noon – 1:30 p.m. Place: Mohonk Mountain House, 1000 Mountain Rest Rd., New Paltz Cost: Complimentary to Corporate Partners, $18 for members, $25 non-members Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail Friday, October 30

Welcome Performance Sports and Wellness to the neighborhood and grow your business connections with our popular quarterly networking event. Performance Sports & Wellness incorporates Dr. David Ness’s chiropractic practice with acupuncturist William Weinstein (Mid-Hudson Acupuncture), exercise physiologist and triathlete coach Dorothy Hamburg and sports massage therapist Brian Sechler. Time: 7:30 – 9:00 a.m. Place: Performance Sports and Wellness, 3 Cherry Hill Plaza, New Paltz Cost: Complimentary to members, $5 nonmembers Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail Wednesday, November 4

New Member Breakfast @ Terrace Restaurant, SUNY New Paltz Meet the NPRCoC board and staff and learn how to capitalize on your Chamber membership at this special by-invitation-

only breakfast for the Chamber’s newest members. Sponsor: Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz Time: 7:00 –9:00 a.m. Place: Terrace Restaurant, SUNY New Paltz campus Cost: Complimentary Invitation only, reservations required. Call 845255-0243 or e-mail to RSVP or to request an invitation. Tuesday, November 10

After-Hours Mixer @ Bridge Creek Catering, New Paltz Invigorate your business with some mid-autumn networking—and check out Bridge Creek Catering’s new location on Jenkinstown Road­­—with our November after-hours mixer! Bridge Creek Catering provides handcrafted restaurant quality food, attentive staff and an appreciation of your most celebrated events. Time: 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Place: Bridge Creek Catering, 30 Jenkinstown Road, New Paltz Cost: Complimentary for members, $5 nonmembers Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail Wednesday, November 18

Business Luncheon @ Ship Lantern Inn, Milton, featuring Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell, LLP, CPAs Enjoy a gourmet lunch and bone up on your year-end tax planning advice and “greening” the office with Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni and Weddell LLP, CPAs. Sponsor: Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni and Weddell, LLP, CPAs Time: 12:00 noon – 1:30 p.m. Place: Ship Lantern Inn, 1725 Route 9W, Milton Cost: Complimentary to Corporate Partners, $18 for members, $25 non-members Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail


Friday, November 20

Professional Development Series Panel Discussion V, “The Efficient, Disaster-Proof Business” @ Historic Huguenot Street, New Paltz Join panelists from Schain and Company, CPAs and Professional Computer Associates as they lead the way to an efficient, disaster-proof office. Time: 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Place: Historic Huguenot Street’s Deyo Hall, 18 Broadhead Ave., New Paltz Cost: Complimentary to Chamber members; $15 non-members Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail

Thursday, December 3

After-Hours Mixer @ Postage Inn Restaurant and Pub, Tillson Kick off the holiday season by making new contacts and nurturing existing business relationships at Postage Inn Restaurant and Pub. Our holiday mixer always sells out—make your reservations early! Time: 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Place: Postage Inn Restaurant and Pub, 838 State Route 32, Tillson Cost: Complimentary to members, $5 nonmembers Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail

Thursday, December 10

Business Luncheon @ Terrace Restaurant, SUNY New Paltz, featuring Mohonk Mountain Stage Company Back by popular demand, Mohonk Mountain Stage Company will delight and entertain at this special holiday luncheon. Sponsor: Bermac Home Aides, Inc. Time: 12:00 noon – 1:30 p.m. Place: Terrace Restaurant, SUNY New Paltz campus Cost: Complimentary to Corporate Partners, $18 members, $25 non-members Reservations required. Call 845-255-0243 or e-mail REGIONAL REPORT FALL 2009



A GOOD INCENTIVE Year-End Tax Tips and Credit Highlights By Kelley Granger Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell LLP, CPAs will be sponsoring a business luncheon on November 18 at the Ship Lantern Inn in Milton from noon to 1:30 p.m. Two accountants with the firm, Tim Flanagan and Mike Weddell, will provide attendees with valuable tips and information regarding year-end tax preparations and tax incentives for “going green,” all during a gourmet lunch.


hile tax time may not be a part of the year that’s counted down with much enthusiasm, it should still be planned for with prudence. Businesses that arm themselves with both forethought and information about the latest incentives and changes to tax law will make the process a lot smoother and potentially save a considerable amount of money. “September or October is a good time to be talking to your accountant to see where you stand for the first three quarters of the year and see if you can do some planning,” says Tim Flanagan, a certified public accountant with Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell LLP, CPAs (VDD&W). “Are you in a profitable situation or a loss situation? What’s the subsequent year going to look like? [From there, you can] have a plan going forward. Too many times people come in January and February and it’s too late to do the planning.”


Much of tax planning starts with common sense—make sure you’re maintaining a good set of accounting records, whether computerized or manual; keep everything up to date; and keep all of the backup documentation. With good records and enough time for preparation, an accountant can help an individual or business figure out money-saving tax techniques that work best for their situation. A professional can help a business decide when to prepay deductions and defer income, among other tactics. Deferring income can be a useful and money-saving strategy, especially for businesses that find themselves in a high tax bracket at year’s end. Making the Most of Your Filing

Awareness of changes to tax law and new incentives is also essential to making the most of your filing. From the business end, one tax credit employers should particularly be aware of this year is the Work Opportunity Credit. This credit benefits businesses that hire em-

ployees from certain disadvantaged groups, like unemployed veterans, disconnected youth, food stamp recipients, ex-felons, and others. According to the Internal Revenue Service, the maximum first-year wage for eligibility is $6,000. Individuals who worked fewer than 400 hours but at least 120 hours are eligible for a maximum credit of $1,500 or 25 percent, while individuals who worked 400 hours or more qualify for 40 percent with a maximum credit of $2,400. (More information on the Department of Labor website: www. Another change of note is the manufacturers’ deduction, formerly known as the Domestic Production Activities Deduction. For the tax year beginning in 2009, the deduction is 6 percent, but that percentage will increase in 2010 to 9 percent, says Flanagan. He expects a number of similar provisions to arise in tax bills to come as the state and federal government works to continue stimulating the economy.



Don’t Wait! October is a good time to talk to your accountant about where you stand financially from the first three quarters. eep Clean Accounts K A set of good accounting records is the first step toward saving money on your taxes. Aware of Changes in Tax Law Be Tax law changes year to year, and employers can take advantage of programs like the Work Opportunity Credit, which benefits businesses that hire employees from certain disadvantaged groups like unemployed veterans, disconnected youth, food stamp recipients, ex-felons, and others. As state and federal agencies continue to stimulate the moribund economy, expect similar bills in 2010. Green Go Eco-friendly adjustments to your home may pay you back in green on your tax return.

For individuals, one significant change has been the qualified education expense deduction for college-related costs. Flanagan says the deduction was originally just for room and board, but has been expanded to cover additional items. The IRS requires that the student be enrolled in an eligible educational institution and that the money paid for student activity fees, books, supplies, and related equipment be paid to the institution as a condition of enrollment or attendance.

Greenbacks for Going Green

Individuals who have made eco-friendly adjustments to their homes may also be eligible for certain updated tax benefits, says Mike Weddell, Flanagan’s colleague at VDD&W. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 affected two green incentives of interest—the Residential Energy Property Credit and the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit. The first is a credit geared toward homeowners that make energy-efficient improvements to their existing homes, says Weddell, and revises the previous credit amount. Homeowners who install insulation or energy-efficient exterior windows, heating, or air conditioning systems are now eligible to claim up to a 30-percent credit rate to a maximum of $1,500 for improvements made during the years 2009 or 2010. Likewise, the update to the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit modifies some of the previous maximum amounts and offers a credit equal to 30 percent of the cost of qualified property. This credit is used for property enhancements that include items such as geothermal heating units, solar hot water heaters, and wind energy. Weddell does caution clients that are interested in pursuing these credits, because although many caps on the credits have been removed, higher qualifying standards are being implemented. “Sometimes at Home Depot they say ‘tax-credit eligible’ or ‘energy-efficient’ [on various products] and they really don’t qualify—you have to

read the specs on what’s eligible,” he says. Speaking with your accountant before making an energy-efficient equipment purchase is a good idea, he adds. An accountant can provide you with the specific product information that will qualify for various tax benefits. For more information in the realm of tax credits, rebates, and green inc e n t i v e s , We d d e l l r e c o m m e n d s, a tax incentive assistance project website. The site also provides listings of various incentives on state and federal levels. “I think [the variety of green tax incentives] will explode more as the cost of these things come down through more research and development and creating cheaper products for everyone to buy,” says Weddell. “These credits are a stepping stone toward investing now.” BUSINESS LUNCHEON WITH VANACORE, DEBENEDICTUS, DIGOVANNI & WEDDELL, LLP, CPAs

Wednesday, November 18, 12–1:30 p.m. Ship Lantern Inn, 1725 Route 9W, Milton. Sponsor: Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni, & Weddell LLP, CPAs. Reservations required. Complimentary for NPRCoC Corporate Partners. $18 for members; $25 for non-members. 845-255-0243 or e-mail REGIONAL REPORT FALL 2009


THE NEW NORMAL continued from front cover Honesty: Today’s Best Policy

“I think an overriding awareness is the unpredictability and uncertainty,” says John Mallen of JMC Marketing Communications & PR, which has offices in Kingston and New York City. “I think consumers are not seeing a pattern economically that they’ve seen before, or at least for most of those who are post-Great Depression. I think that’s the underlying condition that’s affecting consumers and business-to-business customers today: Rules are changing.” One of the top issues that Mallen notes is of utmost importance to customers in this era is transparency. The public has been shaken to the core with at least 12 months’ worth of headlines blowing open fraudulent and unsavory business practices, from the banks to Madoff to vehicle manufacturers. As a recent example, Mallen recalls a story in the New York Times about bank customers being involuntarily opted in to overdraft protection, a practice which is now making some banks more money than penalty fees on credit cards. So swiping your debit card for 75 cents more than you had in your account sometimes equates to as much as $35 in overdraft fees, he says. Cathy Hyland, membership director for the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce, says that the local business climate is not immune to the need for transparency and trust. “We have to be more service oriented and be helpful, we should do more consulting instead of just selling today,” she says. “Customers are very skeptical, there’s been so much dishonesty reported in the media and we’re experiencing a lot of pain because of the dishonesty. So I encourage our membership to create top-of-mind awareness by getting in at the beginning of the sales process and staying there. As the customer is gathering facts and shopping around, stay in touch and be helpful—be honest and be helpful.” That’s precisely what Dave Stewart of DS Electric does. Since opening his business a little over two years ago, he’s made an effort to provide the best customer service possible. For DS Electric, this means that whenever a 12

prospective customer phones the office, the call will be answered by a real person instead of an automated system or being placed on hold. A recent poll of BusinessWeek readers found that waiting in “hold purgatory” was the top-ranking customer complaint. “If you call and get an answering machine, you’re going to move on to the next [contractor in the phonebook],” Stewart says. “But if you get someone that’s friendly, knowledgeable about what you’re asking, and responsive to your needs, that makes the difference.” Stewart uses a primary secretary to

“It’s how you interact with the people who buy your products and services that really makes a difference.” —John Mallen answer calls, but employs an off-site secretarial service to answer when she’s unavailable. “I feel that for the construction industry, the bar has been set so low. A contractor calling you back in the past has been enough to get a job. That’s changing a little bit because of the market, which is good,” he says. “These days, I do feel there’s more shopping around on cold calls.” After providing the service, clients of DS Electric receive a follow-up call to make sure that they were satisfied with their experience. “Anyone can make a light switch work,” he says. “It’s that follow-through that gets you the recurring work.” Interestingly, it seems too much bending over backward for customers could backfire. Research by the Corporate Executive Board (CEB), an executive network that provides insight into all the major industries, reports that financial institutions that strove to delight customers found the measures didn’t increase loyalty and were unprofitable. Instead, institutions that meet rather than exceed expectations were more successful. “This [latter] approach translates to

increased customer retention while encouraging greater cost control, two key business imperatives in any tightened market,” the CEB writes. Value as Strategy

Evaluating the shift in your customers’ needs can also help your business provide services in a way that is perceived as having more value. For example, Robert Shoemaker of Professional Computer Associates says that his company started offering fixed-pricing IT service packages that have consistent monthly cost, rather than having customers pay on a “break-fix” basis. Shoemaker says this is appealing because his customers will lessen the chance of unexpected repair costs and pay a steady, predictable fee each month. As a business, Professional Computer Associates also benefits from this arrangement—technicians aren’t charging by the hour, which allows them to make quick fixes that will still ultimately be profitable. Quicker, more efficient technicians get more done in a day and make happier clients, Shoemaker says. “It appears that customers are looking for performance more than anything else,” he explains. “They don’t want to fool around with people learning on the job and don’t want them to take abnormal amounts of time to get things done. The expectation when you come in to do work for them is that you’re going to be an expert and get it done. We’ve always had that [expectation], but it seems even more so now because people see that time equals money.” Time also equals money in the retail sense, when consumers are considering the quality of a potential purchase and how long it’ll last before a replacement is necessary. The antiques business in particular has seen a spike in sales for this reason—they offer products often built with superior craftsmanship that have weathered the test of time. Walter Marquez, owner of the Antiques Barn and manager of Water Street Market, has seen a boom in business since the recession began. “As of last year, we had our best year in nine years,” he says. He chalks that up


to being part of the New Paltz tourist draw, but also to people’s desire to buy things that are durable and a sound investment. “Why would people want to spend $200 at Ikea on a particle board dresser you have to assemble yourself when you can find a quality solid oak antique for the same price?” Marquez asks. In spite of having the best year since his store’s opening, Marquez says that not everyone is buying, and there’s a lot more comparison shopping these days—people are thinking twice before purchasing, especially if it’s a big-ticket item. “I find most people are buying things that are useful, not just something to sit on a shelf,” he says. Even though people might be questioning how they want to spend their money, they don’t want a sub-par experience just for the sake of a bargain. Stan Ackerman of the Rocking Horse Ranch in Highland testifies to this fact. “They’re looking to wheel and deal with you but they still want more for their dollar,” he says. And the Rocking Horse Ranch is doing its best to stay ahead of the competition’s curve to retain repeat customers and lure new guests—in just the last couple of years, in the middle of a recession, no less, the resort has added a spa, installed Wii games, renovated room decor, increased the number of meals in its inclusive-room rate, and is finishing an indoor water park that cost the resort well over a million dollars. Yes, the management is a bit nervous about funding these projects during economic uncertainty, but, as Ackerman says, “when the floodgates open, we want to be there right on top.” Customer Clout and Eco-friendly Economics

To stay competitive, businesses will have to acknowledge another change in customer behavior—they see they have power, and that they can change things, says Mallen of JMC Marketing Communications & PR. “I think that’s what we’re going to see play out as the economy adjusts itself. This is a huge sea change in economics and I think we’re going to see a lot more democratization on the consumer side,” he says. You could call it something like “customer ownership,” a phenomenon that’s been spurred on by the web and social networking. It’s creating a new standard that links what you offer with

how you supply it to the consumer—often it’s how you provide and not what you provide that gets customers talking online, and that’s what’s surfacing and haunting companies, says Mallen. “It’s how you interact with the people who buy your products and services that really makes a difference,” he says. “In this environment, humanity wins.” Speaking of environment, what demands are customers placing on businesses concerning their ecological impact? Many local businesses may use a variety of tactics to keep their eco-footprint to a minimum, but they say they haven’t felt a significant customer demand to go totally green—yet. “Psychologically you have to not be threatened by survival [to be concerned with your environmental impact],” Mallen says of consumers. He says recent research shows green moving into the mainstream, and those trends are being shaped by the wealthy population that can afford to pay more for ecofriendly products right now. There’s already evidence of this filtering down, as Wal-Mart hedges its bets that people will pay more for green goods. Though it’s expected to take years to implement, the retail giant plans to put an “eco-rating” on its products and is requiring its suppliers, which are mainly located in China, to meet certain environmental guidelines by 2012 or the company will cease doing business with them. “Increasingly [consumers] want information about the entire life cycle of a product so they can feel good

about buying it. We do not see this as a trend that will fade,” says Mike Duke, Wal-Mart’s chief executive, in a statement. Mallen feels that these ideas of environmental sensitivity will be an inevitable part of doing business in the near future, and that clean energy and environmental initiatives will be driving forces in repairing the economy as a whole. After the Storm Clouds Clear

Though the recession was the main impetus that made us notice changing customer demands, it’s impossible to discount the other factors, like the emergence of social media, that also led to shifts in buyer behavior. Because of this, we can expect that even as the economy rebounds, consumers will still maintain these new expectations. The best thing a business can do, says Mallen, is to step back and take a look at what one thing will better address or accommodate its market. Each quarter, try to implement one of these changes. Figure out how to make consumers go “viral” on your behalf on the web. Ask yourself what opportunities you can provide customers that you may not have thought of before. “If you look at it too big it becomes impossible, you don’t have time and the resources,” he says. “But if you can look at the next three months and what one thing can you strategically do, that might be a winning game.” REGIONAL REPORT FALL 2009


TASTE OF NEW PALTZ Photos by Teresa Horgan

The 19th Annual Taste of New Paltz was another stunning success! Thank you to our proud sponsors­—Hudson Valley Magazine, Chronogram, Cumulus Broadcasting of the Hudson Valley, Time Warner Cable, Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation, Hampton Inn Kingston, Ulster Publishing, Kempner Corporation, and New Paltz Police Benevolent Association—and to all of the dedicated volunteers whose time, effort and support make the Taste of New Paltz possible. See you next year at the 20th Annual Taste of New Paltz, Sunday, September 12, 2010!

Above (Clockwise from top left): Yuoko Yamamoto of Gomen Kudasai, young Tasters with painted faces and cups of sorbet, potato samosas from Main Course, Pete Newman and a wagonload of kids enjoy the beautiful day, Cleoma’s Ghost performing, offerings from Wright’s Farm in Gardiner.



MEMBER UPDATES Stroke Award for SLCH St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital has just received the American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines–Stroke (GWTG–Stroke) Silver Performance Achievement Award, the only hospital in Orange County to earn the distinction. SLCH is committed to improving stroke outcomes in our community, and offers free educational programs to groups interested in learning more about stroke prevention, diagnosis and treatment. Call 845-568-2232 to schedule a presentation. SLCH at Dutchess Stadium Dutchess Stadium was full of families on Father’s Day for the Hudson Valley Renegades’ “Daddy Daycare” game sponsored by St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital. The hospital offered attendees free blood pressure screenings, general health information, and giveaways. SLCH was the first hospital in the region to offer robotically assisted, minimally invasive surgery for prostate cancer. For more information about prostate cancer and men’s health, visit Decorations for UlsterGreene ARC Ulster-Greene ARC’s Day Services on Wall Street in Kingston is seeking a train and village set to decorate their large storefront windows on Wall St. in Kingston for the holidays. In addition, they are seeking four-season decorations to help cheer passersby and visitors. Please e-mail Kristin Harrell at for more information.

vices to the Hudson Valley, Connecticut, and Massachusetts since 1924. For more information, visit Art at Ulster Savings Bank Ulster Savings Bank held an art exhibit at its 2680 South Road, Poughkeepsie branch featuring works from four local artists: Lynne J. Weiss, Grace E. Barna, Carole Farley Gaudette, and Shari Altman. The exhibit closed with a reception on Thursday, July 16. Ulster Savings Bank also featured an exhibit of paintings by Myrna Socol at its 2201 Rt. 44/55, Gardiner branch from July 3 to August 13. Ulster Savings Bank continuously features artwork from many local artists at several of its branch locations throughout the Hudson Valley. Ulster Savings Grant to Gateway A $7,350 grant from the Ulster Savings Charitable Foundation was recently awarded to Gateway Community Industries, Inc. for equipment upgrades in their Technology Resource Center. The Technology Resource Center is used to teach basic and intermediate computer skills to individuals with disabilities to enhance their employability. Gateway Community Industries serves individuals with mental, developmental, physical, and other disabilities in Ulster and Dutchess counties. Formed by Ulster Savings Bank in 2003, the Foundation assists the local community in areas of housing, economic development, education, and health and human services.

Richard Arnoff 45th Anniversary at arnoff

L.I.F.E. Awards from Ulster Savings

Arnoff Moving & Storage held a treeplanting ceremony on May 19 to commemorate Richard Arnoff ’s 45th anniversary with the company. A purple beech was planted at Arnoff ’s Millerton facility, symbolizing the deep roots Richard has throughout the community. Charlie North emceed, Rabbi Neal Loevinger and Dutchess County Sheriff Butch Anderson were among the speakers, and a proclamation from County Executive Bill Steinhaus and citation from Senator Steven Saland were presented. Arnoff Moving & Storage celebrates its 85th anniversary this year, of providing moving and storage ser-

The Ulster Savings Charitable Foundation recently awarded over $39,000 to 15 area students and 12 educators at its Scholarship and Learning Initiatives For Educators (L.I.F.E.) Grant Awards Reception held at SUNY New Paltz. The Foundation scholarships were awarded to recognize outstanding academic and personal achievement by local communityminded students. The L.I.F.E. grant program assists teachers throughout Ulster County with funding for specific purchases or programs that are outside of their regular budget. For more information, call Jeffrey Wood at (845) 338-6322, ext. 3268.

HOW TO SUBMIT ubmit items of general public S interest; no commercial sales announcements, rates, prices, etc. Items must be received no later than the 15th of November, February, May, and August to meet the quarterly deadline for the upcoming issue. The New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce reserves the right to edit all material. E-mail or fax your information, including company name, address, phone number, contact name, and your newsbrief (100-word maximum) to the Chamber office via at or 845-255-5189.

SLCH Stars of the Moonth St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital announces Ray Degraffenried of Newburgh as June Star of the Month and Felicia Selikowitz of Monroe as July Star of the Month. A five-year SLCH employee, Degraffenried is a Maintenance Associate in the Engineering Department at the Newburgh campus. A Case Manager at the Cornwall campus, Selikowitz has been a SLCH employee for nearly two years. SLCH employees are nominated for the Star of the Month award based on Stellar Service Standards, focused on making customers feel comfortable and important, providing timely and orderly service and improving communication with patients and staff. CTPC Assists Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse Craig Thomas Pest Control recently assisted the Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse with expert pest control advice. The organization has been dedicated to the reduction of child maltreatment since 1973, serving more than 12,000 children and 4,000 parents, teachers, caregivers, and adults each year. CTPC serves the Hudson Valley with the latest technology in pest management and is QualityPro certified, placing it in the top echelon of pest management companies in the nation. Craig Thomas Pest Control offers coverage to Dutchess, Orange, Sullivan, Ulster, Columbia, Greene, and Rockland counties. For more information, visit or call 800-255-6777. REGIONAL REPORT FALL 2009


MEMBER UPDATES Staff Changes at Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell LLP, CPAs Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell LLP, CPAs announces the following changes among its staff: Rebecca Hasbrouck of Port Ewen and Kendra Garzione of Modena have been promoted to Supervisor. Both Hasbrouck and Garzione have been with the Firm for seven years and are in the Client Service Department. Colleen Fowler of Modena, William Kearney of Wallkill, Aleta Symon of Wappingers Falls, Jennifer Dugas of Salt Point, and Jason Puckett of Walden have been promoted to Senior Accountant. Fowler has been with the Firm for three years and is in the Tax Department. Kearney, Symon and Dugas have each been with the Firm for five years and are in the Client Service Department. Walden has been with the Firm for three years and is in the Client Service Department.

MetroPool, Inc at 2009 Earth Day Commuter Challenge MetroPool, Inc. honored 23 New York employers for successfully participating in the 2009 Earth Day Commuter Challenge, which was held to encourage commuters to take greener forms of commuting through Earth Day (April 22) and to the end of April. More than 13,000 commuters shared 223,331 rides and drove 6,229,518 fewer miles, which resulted in a savings of 281,887 gallons of gasoline and the prevention of 2,740 tons of greenhouse gas emissions. All winners received environmentally friendly awards designed from blue recycled glass. For more information about MetroPool, Inc., call 800-FIND-RIDE or visit

SLCH Annual Golf Outing Nearly 200 guests participated in St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital’s Seventh Annual Golf Outing, held at Branton Woods Golf Club. The event raised more than $170,000 to help support and promote health care initiatives and the hospital’s mission to provide quality, comprehensive medical care to the region. A complete list of event sponsors appears at 16

James W. Hochstatter Promoted at Ulster Savings Ulster Savings Bank recently announced that James W. Hochstatter of Rhinebeck was promoted to Senior Vice President/Information Technology. He previously served as Vice President/IT Officer in the Bank’s Kingston headquarters. A Purdue University graduate, he currently attends the American Bankers Association Stonier Graduate School of Banking. He is a member of the Association of Information Technology Professionals and the Project Management Institute, and serves as Vice Chairman of the Ulster County Chapter of the American Cancer Society. Mr. Hochstatter joined Ulster Savings Bank in 2004. SLCH Wins Marketing Award Two campaigns created by St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital and its agency, Momentum Advertising & Design, have earned top honors in the Aster Awards competition, a national program recognizing outstanding health care professionals for excellence in advertising/ marketing. SLCH and Momentum Advertising & Design earned awards for print/radio/ billboard campaigns promoting the hospital’s Center for Joint Replacement and Orthopedic Program (Silver) and comprehensive Cancer Program (Bronze). All winners are posted at Art and the River at the Dorsky The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz held the opening reception for “The Hudson River to Niagara Falls, 19th-Century American Landscape Paintings from the NewYork Historical Society” and “Panorama of the Hudson River: Greg Miller” on July 11. Both exhibits will run through December 13 and are part of the Dorsky Museum’s “Art and the River” series, which coincides with New York State’s Hudson 400. For event details, reservations, accessibility, museum hours, or directions, visit or call 845-257-3844. Hudson Symposium at SUNY New Paltz SUNY New Paltz hosted an international symposium, “Henry Hudson, New Netherland and Atlantic History,” on September 25 and 26, 2009, sponsored by the Center for Research,

Regional Education and Outreach (CRREO) in partnership with Ulster BOCES and with financial support secured by Assemblyman Kevin Cahill. It coincided with this year’s Quadricentennial celebration of Henry Hudson’s exploration of the river that now bears his name. The symposium was led by Lou Roper and Dennis Maika along with scholars from the Netherlands, Germany, France, and the United States. For more information, visit Visions of the Valley Exhibit at Mark Gruber Mark Gruber Gallery hosted “Visions of the Valley—Celebrating 400 Years of Life Along the Hudson” from July 18 to September 9. The show featured New Hudson River School artists Carolyn Edlund, Marlene Weidenbaum, Robert Schneider, Jim Coe, Jim Cramer, Paul Abrams, Eric Angeloch, Jane Bloodgood-Abrams, Scott Balfe, Robert Trondsen, Gayle Fedigan, Christie Scheele, and Kevin Cook. The Mark Gruber Gallery is located in the New Paltz Plaza, New Paltz. For more information and gallery hours, call Mark Gruber at 845-255-1241. Larkin Plaza Dedication at SLCH in Newburgh St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital, Newburgh Rotary Club, and the community recently recognized Sen. Bill Larkin with the dedication of Larkin Plaza, across from the hospital’s Newburgh campus. The plaza reflects the shared commitment of SLCH and Sen. Larkin to enhance quality of life, promote a healing environment, and revitalize the City of Newburgh. Please contact Anna Waz at 845-568-2566 or for more information. Bryan Turner Joins Riverside Bank Riverside Bank announces the appointment of Bryan Turner of Pawling as I.T. – Network Administrator. Mr. Turner has been working in the technology field since 2005. His most recent position was Systems Administrator at Plainfield Asset Management, Greenwich, Connecticut. Mr. Turner has a B.A.A. in Management Information Systems from Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, Connecticut, in 2006. For more information about Riverside Bank, call 845-454-5511 or visit


Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell, LLP, CPAs announces that Jennifer Dugas of Salt Point has been appointed to the Board of Directors for the Southlands Foundation and Frank Smith, CPA of Poughkeepsie has been appointed to the Hyde Park School District Audit Committee. Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell, LLP provide accounting, auditing, and tax and business consulting services to clients in the greater Hudson Valley, as well as in other areas of New York State and New Jersey.

When you decide to redecorate

Gateway Receives Job Training Grant The Vocational Transition Center at Gateway Community Industries announces that the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance has awarded Gateway a 16-month grant of $352,029 to create subsidized job training and transitional employment opportunities for low-income individuals to gain meaningful job skills as they transition into careers in in-demand occupations. This initiative focuses on matching the workforce development needs of Ulster County businesses with individuals seeking to obtain job skills and employment. For information, call Helen Edelstein or Mira Bowin at 845-339-0155, or e-mail Ulster County Community Foundation Receives Rotary Club Contribution Kingston Sunrise Rotary Club recently presented the Ulster County Community Foundation with a $600 contribution, the proceeds from the Rotary Club’s annual candy sale. These funds will be matched by a Dyson Foundation Challenge Grant. Funds raised by the Ulster County Community Foundation are used to fund Community Response Grants for Ulster County nonprofits. Inaugural grants were awarded in December 2008 to 11 Ulster County nonprofits. For more information, call Cynthia A. Lowe, director, at 845-338-2535 or visit Absinthe at Aroma Thyme Aroma Thyme Bistro was featured nationally in the May issue of Cater Source magazine for their Absinthe service. Not only does Aroma Thyme, Ellenville, offer an extensive Absinthe menu but it features an Absinthe Bar for catering events. The Absinthe bar serves the classic version with a sugar cube and several

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MEMBER UPDATES cocktails made from Absinthe. For more information, call 845-647-3000 or visit Introducing Mike Artega’s Express Mike Artega’s Health & Fitness Center on Route 9W in Highland is expanding, renovating, and changing to the new Mike Artega’s Express. With a goal of achieving affordable fitness for everyone, Mike Artega’s Highland location is adding more fitness equipment and streamlining costs to serve more people at lower prices in a clean, beautiful facility. For more information about Mike Artega’s Express, call 845-691-6161 or visit CDPHP® Adds Providers CDPHP®, celebrating 25 years of offering an expanded array of primary care physicians, specialists, and other practitioners to its membership, welcomed nearly 80 providers to its Hudson Valley network during the first half of 2009. For additional information about these practitioners, visit the CDPHP website at and use the newly enhanced Find-A-Doc feature. This tool provides pertinent new features such as a simplified search, Google maps, and a radius search by Zip code. ScheinMedia Announces Conference Panelists ScheinMediaConferences announces its first round of distinguished panelists for the Hudson Valley Green Real Estate Development Conference, an invitation-only event to be held on October 28 from 7:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Tech City, Kingston: Joseph Cotter, Founder/ President, National Resources Group; J. Michael Divney, Partner, Divney Tung Schwalbe (DTS); Alan Ginsberg, Owner/Developer, TechCity Properties; and Andrew L. Herz, Partner, Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP. For more information or to register, visit: http://events.

the Hudson Valley. Every month, Hudson Valley Traveler has a travel package Sweepstakes. The June Sweepstakes winner (a $900+ value!) is M.L. Rosendale, from Marlboro, NJ. For more information about Hudson Valley Traveler, visit or call 845-750-6252. Tier One Gold Rating for Ulster Savings Ulster Savings Bank has achieved an overall Tier One Gold performance rating from Freddie Mac for superior investor reporting and loan default management during 2008. Ulster Savings Bank was chosen as one of four New York lenders and one of 45 lenders nationwide to receive the distinction, in recognition of commitment to assisting borrowers in avoiding foreclosure and excellence in loan servicing and payment collection performance. For more information about Ulster Savings Bank, visit New Office for Bodymind Massage Therapy Bodymind Massage Therapy is pleased to announce the opening of its new office in the professional offices at Water Street Market in New Paltz, Suite 321B. The new, handicappedaccessible location opened on September 1st. Please address any questions to Helen Gutfreund, Licensed Massage Therapist at 845-255-3228 or New Horizons Asset Management Group, LLC Relocates Steven Gleason, Managing Partner at New Horizons Asset Management Group, LLC., announced that the firm has relocated its Main office to Suite 3 at 11 Racquet Road, Newburgh. The firm has expanded every year since it was established in 2000 and needed more office space to meet its growing needs. For more information, visit or call 845-567-3930.

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A second edition of be clutter FREE: Sorting Made Simple, written by Rosalyn Cherry of Organized and Clutter Free, will be


published by White River Press. The be clutter FREE guidelines for sorting and clearing apply to any task that needs consistent effort over time. Whether it is writing a dissertation or executing a marketing plan, the action steps of the be clutter FREE method can successfully guide you to meet your goals. The book will be available in book stores and at late-fall. For more information, visit Jennifer Poirier Joins Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell, LLP Jennifer Poirier has joined Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell, LLP as its Billing and Collections Specialist. With over 25 years experience in the manufacturing, oil & gas and building supply industries, Jennifer holds multiple certifications in Customer Service from Skillpath Seminars, Accounts Receivable from Rockhurst University and the Extending Credit/ Commitment to Excellence Series from ABC Supply Company. She is an active member of her community, and is a volunteer for the National Kidney Foundation. Ulster-Greene ARC Seeks Turtle Tank Ulster-Greene ARC’s Recreation Program is seeking a 50 gallon fish/reptile tank (rectangle shape preferred) to house its growing population of turtles. The turtles are lovingly cared for by Jamie DeCicco, the program’s coordinator, along with her staff and co-workers. Please contact Jamie at for additional info or to donate. 2010 Go Red for Women Luncheon Save the date for the American Heart Association 2010 Go Red for Women Luncheon: Friday, February 26, 2010 at The Grandview, 176 Rinaldi Boulevard, Poughkeepsie. The Go Red for Women Luncheon is a part of the national campaign to raise awareness about heart disease and stroke, and is locally sponsored by Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation, Health Quest, The Heart Center, and Wendy’s. Learn more by contacting Andrea Casey at 845-905-2134 or


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Employment Outlook

In an effort to curb unemployment, the New York State Department of Labor is touting a program called “Shared Work” as a layoff alternative. Under the program, an employer can avoid laying off employees to cut costs by offering reduced hours and wages. Employees are then eligible to receive partial unemployment insurance benefits. The program benefits both employer and employee—the employee will typically earn more than if they were on full unemployment, and the employer is still staffed with trained people if business picks up again. Employers interested in the program can visit for more information on plan requirements.

According to the Public Policy Institute of New York State, which releases a monthly economic update, “there are some early indications that employment Upstate may be beginning to stabilize, although the number of long-term discouraged job seekers is growing.” At 2 percent, educational and health services continues to be one of the only industries growing, but has been joined by government jobs (which posted a growth of 1.9 percent), and other services, which grew by 2.9 percent. Construction services still ranked as one of the highest job-loss industries in the state, but was outpaced by manufacturing, which lost a total of 8.3 percent of its workers from July 2008 to the same time this year. As of July 2009, the jobless rate in the Mid-Hudson Valley was at 8.1 percent, or 27,100 unemployed people—still quite a contrast from the jobless rate at the same time last year, which was only 5.5 percent.

Executive Orders In August, Gov. Paterson issued an executive order to remove regulations that are “unnecessary, unbalanced, unwise, duplicative, or unduly burdensome” to state businesses. The first round of reviews will involve seven departments or agencies, including those responsible for environmental, health, liquor, and labor regulations. The order is supported by the Business Council of New York State, whose president, Kenneth Adams, said that “Governor Paterson’s proposal on regulatory reform rightly recognizes that state government needs to remove obstacles to private sector job growth in order for New York’s economy to recover.” But many are concerned about potential consequences. Environmental organizations are worried that repealing certain legislation that encouraged sustainable business practices would be a serious impediment to eco-friendly goals, like the bold carbon emissions targets the governor had just signed off on the day before. A number of people are also concerned that this will give industry the power to control which regulations they want to adhere to.

Manufacturing Jobs Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is pushing a plan to help invigorate New York’s manufacturing

sector, one of the hardest-hit industries in the recession. Since 2001, New York has lost more than 160,000 manufacturing jobs, and nationwide, 30 percent of all employment lost since December 2007 has occurred in that industry. “Manufacturing is very much part of the lifeblood of our economy and will remain so,” Gillibrand said. “There will continue to be efficiencies created by new technologies, but there’s a lot of work that still needs oversight by people who have the skill set to work the machinery.” She’s proposing the Investments for Manufacturing Progress and Clean Technology (IMPACT) Act, which would give states $30 billion to form revolving loan funds to assist in reconfiguring, expanding, or starting to manufacture using clean energy. She’s also proposing legislation to encourage the rehabilitation of railroad tracks with a renewed and increased Short Line Railroad Rehabilitation Tax Credit, which Gillibrand wants to extend through 2013.

Paying for Pupils Recent findings of the U.S. Census Bureau show that New York paid more per student than any other state in the country during the 2006-2007 school year. The state spent $15, 981 a student—65 percent above the national average, $9, 666 per pupil. For every $1,000 of personal income in that academic year, New York spent $37.16 on schools. That amount was the highest in the nation and 42 percent above the national average that year. New York was also 50 percent above the national average when it came to state-provided educational funds, ranking it as the fifth-highest per student amount in the country.

Costs of Care The Business Council of New York State is urging Congress to contemplate what a new healthcare system would mean for New York businesses that have to help fund it. “New York State already has the broadest safety net of subsidized health coverage options of any state in the nation,” wrote Kenneth Adams, council president. “Subsidized health insurance options in New York come at a cost to our businesses and taxpayers. Currently, taxes on New Yorkers who voluntarily buy private health coverage total about $4.2 billion per year, reflecting as much as 10 percent of the cost of health insurance in some areas of New York.” He said that surtaxes to support national healthcare reform would make the business tax climate in our state even worse than it is, already the second most unattractive in the nation. Adams and the council contend that “reforms that reduce the high costs in New York, including mandate and tax relief, and more efficient healthcare delivery, are essential.” REGIONAL REPORT FALL 2009



Decanting Wine Wisdom An Interview with Kevin Zraly of Windows on the World Wine School


or Kevin Zraly, words seem to come easy, whether spoken or written, especially if they have to do with wine. In conversation, he may slip in fascinating factoids about winemaking history in your hometown or may mindfully pause mid-thought and spell whichever winery or grape variety he’s recommending, so you can accurately note it. As the founder of the Windows on the World Wine School and author of the best-selling wine book in the world, Windows on the World Complete Wine Course, Zraly is one of the foremost experts in his subject. In spite of being well aware of that fact, he’s approachable and engaging—a total contrast to stereotypes of buttoned-up, snooty wine connoisseurs. Zraly will talk about wine and his experiences during a Chamber luncheon on October 14 at Mohonk Mountain House. Here, he discusses his travels, the downside to his job, and more—an aperitif to whet your palate for the event. How did your passion for wine, and this career path, begin? I was 19 years old and got a job as a waiter at the Depuy Canal House [which had just] received a four-star rating from the New York Times. My world changed. I went from Budweiser to Bordeaux all within a year. There were only three of us working at the Canal House, so when we got that four-star rating, the place shot up in business from all over the tri-state area. Bottom line: I had to become the bartender at 19, I had to learn everything about the bar. As a history major, wine took me back 8,000 years through civilization. So I really went at it with gusto. Maybe I became a little obsessed with it.


How did that develop into teaching about wine? Ulster County Community College contacted John Novi [chef/owner of the Depuy Canal House]. They offered for us to teach a continuing education wine class, which I did the following year with him. I was 20 years old; it was 1971. That was the beginning of my wine teaching career. You learn by teaching, so we continued classes, then I joined all these wine organizations and was reading every book I could. I traveled to all of the wineries in the Hudson Valley and the Finger Lakes, then I took a semester off from college and hitchhiked to California to study their wines. When I came back I was able to convince SUNY New Paltz to offer a wine course. So as a junior in college, I was teaching seniors a course called Wine History, Types, and Production. After I graduated college I lived in Europe for a year, doing exactly the same thing I did in the Hudson Valley, Finger Lakes, and in California. I had no money; it was rough and tough backpacking, the only difference between the other backpackers and I was that I would carry a suit with me. How would you describe your classes, and your teaching style? It’s education through entertainment. I had a high school history teacher—and I didn’t like history then by the way. I didn’t want to listen to what he had to say, but he was so animated—he would get up discussing World War I with a helmet and bayonet in his hand, pointing it at your face…and look what happened to me, I became a history major. This guy inspired me not to just sit back and teach but to have fun with it all.

Most people would think you’ve got it made with your job. What are the challenges in what you do? I have to get my teeth cleaned four times a year. You don’t want to look at me after a wine tasting, especially for red wine, my teeth are blue. I think the travel is a problem. My 25-hour trip to Australia was not a happy moment for me. So the travel and being away from my family, and missing where I live, which is New Paltz. What’s your opinion on Hudson Valley wines in general? You have winter here; the cold, the frost, and this rain season we just had could be a killer. You have Japanese beetles, they come in and eat up everything. With all of that said, anyone who’s growing grapes and making wine in the Hudson Valley is passionate about their subject. It would be easier to go to other locations, like Long Island or even the Finger Lakes, it gets cold but you have the lake effect. I think that their passion is admirable. I’ve tasted Hudson Valley wine that’s just as good as any European and California wine. LUNCHEON WITH KEVIN ZRALY

Wednesday, October 14, 12–1:30 p.m. Mohonk Mountain House, 1000 Mountain Rest Rd., New Paltz. Sponsored by Riverside Bank. Reservations required. Complimentary for NPRCoC Corporate Partners. $18 for members; $25 for non-members. 845-255-0243 or e-mail


Tee Time

The Chamber Foundation’s 24th Annual Golf Outing


he rolling Shawangunk scenery and lush fairways of Hudson Valley Resort and Spa’s 18-hole golf course will welcome participants of the 24th Annual Golf Outing on Saturday, October 3. The outing will support the Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz’s business education scholarship fund, with additional proceeds going to the New Paltz Youth Center. The golf tournament is open to anyone who wants to play and is organized in a four-person scramble format, where everyone on a team hits one ball off a tee and the game is played from the best ball. “It makes it a lot more fun and there’s not as much pressure on the


Saturday, October 3, starting at 10 a.m. Hudson Valley Resort and Spa Sponsored by the Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz. Reservations required.

$80 per player or $300 per foursome. $35 per dinner guest.

845-255-0243 or download a faxable entry form at

golfers,” says Dr. David Ness of Performance Sports and Wellness, who is the chairman of the event. In the past, winning teams have scored prizes like gift certificates for rounds

of golf at Mohonk Mountain House or Casperkill Country Club. Hole-in-one prizes this year are noteworthy, including $10,000 cash, a Callaway Big Bertha iron set, a Sharp LCD flatscreen television, and roundtrip domestic airfare for two. Registration and a continental breakfast begin at 10 a.m., and the tournament begins with a shotgun start at 11 a.m. The event is limited to 124 golfers. The cost is $80 per player or $300 per foursome. The dinner, auction and cocktail hour is just $35 per guest. For more information, call 845-255-0243 or download a faxable entry form at www.newpaltzchamber. org under the calendar of events.

Bomb-Proof Business Data Protection and Paperless Operations the Focus of Upcoming Professional Development Series


here are a range of data-loss statistics floating around on the Internet, but they all share one thing in common—if your business isn’t able to recover and resume operations quickly after a computer crisis, the chances of the company going under are significantly increased. Making sure your business data is accessible and can be efficiently accessed should be a top priority on your company to-do list. “None of this is really exciting until you turn your computer on and all you hear is ‘click, click, click,’” says Chris Drouin of Beyond Wealth Management. “That’s a nightmare, and it always happens at the worst time.” When talking about security and reliable methods of saving information, it may seem like going against the grain to talk about going paperless and getting rid of hard copies of documents. But storing information electronically not only protects information from fire and other hazards, but it also makes finding it more effective and makes your business more eco-friendly. Marc Schain of Schain and Company, CPA, made the paperless transi-


Friday, November 20, 9–11 a.m. SUNY New Paltz School of Business, Room 110 van den Berg Hall. Sponsored by the Regional Chamber of Commerce Foundation at New Paltz. Reservations required. $15 for nonmembers. 845-255-0243 or e-mail

tion over the course of two to three years. “Initially the decision was made from an ecological perspective to try to minimize usage of paper,” he says. “As we got into it we realized there were more benefits that we were reaping. There was more efficiency, because instead of having to look for a paper document you had your file cabinet in your computer.” Working off the paperless objective, Robert Shoemaker of Professional Computer Associates says companies should then institute a “business continuity” plan to protect against data loss and operational interruption. “Business continuity is a process that

makes sure you’re able to make your business run in case of minor or major disaster and gives you the ability to maximize your potential by using a thin client rather than a fat client,” he says. Shoemaker advocates using a “thin client”— a minimalist workstation that connects to an offsite server and allows employees to access only the program they need—in contrast to the typical PC, a “fat client,” loaded with unnecessary applications. Through different models of thin clients, businesses can store data locally and also archive it offsite. Information will be encrypted and stored securely, potential corruption is limited, and maintenance is simplified. Another benefit: IT needs are funded by cash flow, rather than an upfront outlay on equipment, says Drouin. More details on the topics of reinforcing your files and making your business more efficient will be discussed by Schain and Shoemaker at an upcoming seminar in the Professional Development Series, The Efficient, Disaster-Proof Business, moderated by Drouin on November 20. REGIONAL REPORT FALL 2009


MEMBER PROFILES Self-Improvement

Scottish author Samuel Smiles once wrote that “the spirit of self-help is the root of all genuine growth in the individual.” The region harbors a massive number of businesses that are involved in self-improvement, the goals reading like a collective list of New Year’s resolutions: lose weight, eat better, keep a tidier home, pursue wellness. Smiles also has said that “the duty of helping one’s self in the highest sense involves the helping of one’s neighbors.” We are also lucky that for as much self-help as we have available in the area, many of these businesses answer to a higher purpose, which is beyond the individual—and give back to the community as a whole through donations, service, and providing sanctuaries for hard-working nonprofits.


Lifebridge Sanctuary I

n 2005, the Lifebridge Foundation opened the Lifebridge Sanctuary, a retreat to host nonprofit organizations that help further the foundation’s mission: to promote the concept of interconnectedness of all life and one humanity. The sanctuary property was donated to the foundation in 1995 by the mother of Barbara L. Valocore, the president of the board of directors and cofounder of the foundation. “It was very clear that this location, this place, should be available to many other people,” she says. “The foundation board made the decision to use a lot of its principal to take the foundation in that direction.” The Sanctuary was completed to be a peaceful, eco-friendly haven. From a milliondollar view of the Catskills in the meeting 24

room to the wool rugs, low VOC paint, recycled newspaper insulation, and bamboo floors to the nontoxic cleaning products used for its maintenance, the Lifebridge Sanctuary strives to provide as pure of an environment for visiting groups as possible. “The space, the sanctuary, the view, the land, it was all exactly the kind of quality and place for non-profits in particular to come together in beauty, privacy, and quiet to do their work,” says Kevin Kraft, director of operations. The Sanctuary has hosted local organizations such as Family of Woodstock, Planned Parenthood, and more. “We keep our costs really low because the foundation subsidizes a lot of that through its mission,” says Valocore. The property is not open to the public because the site is reserved solely

for those organizations to work in uninterrupted privacy. “A lot of nonprofits don’t have the opportunities because of budget constraints to go to facilities of beauty and privacy and, as a result of that our feedback is sincere gratitude that the foundation has created a place that’s accessible to them to do their work,” says Kraft. “And that’s about dignity and respect to the people who are providing service to the community at large.” LIFEBRIDGE SANCTUARY PO Box 327 High Falls, NY 12440 845-658-3439


Kerri L. Vitek

By Kelley Granger

Lorna Tychostup



Jai Ma Yoga A

mi Hirschstein and Gina Bassinette (pictured above) were both looking to offer affordable yoga to the community—but they hadn’t yet met. Coincidentally, both had come from backgrounds in social work and had developed yoga practices, and met through a mutual friend. “[Yoga has] been such a gift in our lives,” says Hirschstein. “We wanted to make it available to everyone and create a space where other things could be offered as well.” Today their studio, Jai Ma Yoga, is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary with a diverse array of instructors. Each teacher is certified in a number of yoga disciplines and blends their knowledge, which ranges from Ashtanga and Kripalu to Anusara and Iyengar, to create unique classes. “We have a wide variety of classes, but we really focus on alignment,” says Hirschstein. “That’s sort of the continuum in our teaching, even though [the teachers are] all different with totally different multiple certifications.” Students of the school can also feel comfortable knowing there’s also a wide variety of class levels, which include yoga for those with moderate to advanced experience, “gentle” for those who’ve had recent surgery or chronic pain, “restorative” to eliminate pain and illness,

and prenatal yoga classes and children’s lessons for ages 5 through 11. Jai Ma also offers belly dancing classes and Sanskrit chanting sessions that practice Bhakti Yoga. Chanting events are held without cost at 6 p.m. on the 2nd and 4th Fridays of the month. As if providing a place for growth and to nurture wellness isn’t enough, Jai Ma gives back to the community in other ways, too. They have a yoga mat rental box, with all proceeds donated to local nonprofits, and put on food drives and other fundraisers to support organizations from Family of New Paltz to those aiding tsunami victims. “It’s important for us to give back to community,” says Hirschstein. “We do work exchange for those who can’t afford to pay for classes and we also gift people who can’t afford classes. Yoga is such a wonderful tool and it’s touched our lives so much we feel it should be accessible to everybody. And one of the fundamental parts of yoga is giving back.” JAI MA YOGA 69 Main Street New Paltz, NY 12561 845-256-0465

36 Main Restaurant & Wine Bar 87 Motel Acapulco Grill Alfandre Architecture, PC Allied Locksmiths Allways Moving & Storage American Heart Association Anderson Center for Autism Antiques Barn at Water Street Market Autos by Joseph, Inc. Avery & Co., LLC Barclay Heights Bed & Breakfast Bernetta’s Place Inn By The Lake Bicycle Depot Blackberry Barn Bright Beginnings Preschool Brykill Farms C2G Environmental Consultants Carbon Treatment Systems, LLC Casa Mia Restaurant Center for Therapeutic Massage Chelsea Modular Homes Building Systems LLC Clarkson’s Appliances Coldwell Banker Currier & Lazier Realtors - K. Rinaudo Colucci Shand Realty - L. Majetich Hansen Colucci Shand Realty - M. Dorris Colucci Shand Realty - T. Colucci Shand Commercial Associates Realty Inc. Copeland Funeral Home Inc. Cornerstone Services, Inc. Country Maids Concierge & Cleaning Service Crosspoint Solutions, LLC D.J. Abstract Co. David Clouser & Associates Daybreak Virtual Office Solutions, LLC Deep-Six Underwater Systems, Inc. Di Stasi, Moriello and Murphy, PC Edible Arrangements Elinor B. Descovich, OD Ellenville Regional Hospital Ellinwood & Krasinski, CPAs Fair-Rite Products Corporation Fall Fittings, Inc. Frank’s Steak House Freefall Express, Inc. DBA The Blue Sky Ranch



MEMBER RENEWALS Gadaleto’s Seafood Market & Restaurant Glen F. Kubista & Associates Glenn & Breheney PLLC Headless Horseman Hayrides & Haunted Houses High Falls Mercantile Highland Rotary Club Inc. Hudson Heritage Federal Credit Union Hudson River Valley Tours Hungry Ghost Guest House & Herb Garden Hunter Mountain Resort Indian Ridge Preserve Inn at the Ridge Inn at Twaalfskill J. Philip Zand, Attorney Jacob’s Music Jenkins & Lueken Orchards Joey’s of New Paltz JT Marks Trucking, Inc. K & E Beverage Katia Gushue Art Studio Kimlin Propane Co., Inc. Lithography By Design Little Ones Little Pond Consulting, LLC Magic Sage Realty, LLC Manpower Maple Lane Apartment Rentals Masseo Landscape, Inc. MCB Security Systems McGillicuddy’s Mellow Marketing Minnewaska Lodge Moondance Ridge Bed & Breakfast Mountain Brauhaus Restaurant MVP Health Care New Paltz Auto Sales New Paltz Golf Course New Paltz Post Office New Paltz Rotary Club Nora Scarlett Studio Inc. NYS Bridge Authority Ohioville Acres P & G’s Restaurant Petfield & Associates, Inc. Pine Haven B&B Pinegrove Ranch and Family Resort Pioneer Cottage



be clutter FREE W

hen you call Rosalyn Cherry for a decluttering session, you can be sure that you’re getting a truly professional organizer—even her book, be clutter FREE: Sorting Made Simple is carefully color-coded in its straightforward, step-by-step instructions to lightening up your load. In fact, the entire book is really a physical manifestation of her advice. Unlike other organization guides that offer lengthy introductions and dense instructions, Cherry boiled things down to the basics with her text, keeping only the most practical words and eliminating the excessive. Cherry credits her cumulative life experiences as having led her to her career in organizing for the past 15 years. Prior to being a professional organizer, she was a systems analyst and then a massage therapist. But aside from being interested in systems, whether modes of stock transfer or the structures of the body, there’s another thread tying together her life’s work. It’s a genuine desire to help make people’s lives better, and it goes beyond just having things in their place. “My favorite part is when I see a difference or a change,” Cherry says. “I like helping people to empower themselves to have a

shift in their life.” The focus of her messminimizing tactics are the questions: Have I used it within the last year? Does it add to my life? Does it reflect who I am? Whether through her book or with in-person organizing services, Cherry helps clients address these questions while being mindful of emotional attachments. “[I help] people see that in spite of the emotional connections that they have to things that they can let them go,” she says. Another important facet of Cherry’s work is that she not only encourages getting rid of things, but giving them to those who need them most. “I have this motto with which to simplify your life: Consume less and share more,” she says. Rather than putting things in storage, she asks clients to think about shelters with residents who have nothing. It’s a lot easier to part with something when you can imagine a person in need using it, she says. BE CLUTTER FREE PO Box 187 New Paltz, NY 12561-0187 212-864-2165


Michael Gold / The Corporate Image



Vicki Koenig, MS, RD, CDN V

icki Koenig’s career in nutrition began after she started investigating ways to ease the food-related health troubles she grew up with. “I had always had food allergies as a child but nobody really identified them as such,” she says. “I had specific symptoms that I was given medicine to treat and as I grew up and was in my early twenties, I had a sense that there was something that I could do that was more natural.” This sense, and the positive outcome she had when she changed her diet, led to a vision of helping others do the same, and, ultimately to Virginia Tech, where she graduated with a masters degree in human nutrition. Today, Koenig helps individuals and businesses create wellness plans through her New Paltzbased business, Nutrition-Wise. On a one-onone basis or through a corporate wellness program, she can meet with individuals or groups of employees to discuss health issues and how to address them through diet. “Studies demonstrate that there’s a really good return on investment when you invest in health of your employees,” Koenig says. “Productivity increases and there are less people that call in sick.” As a supplement to these services, she offers a computer-based program that lets clients do everything from

calculating their body mass index to print shopping lists to add up calorie counts for a particular meal, all under her monitoring. Koenig is also the consulting nutritionist for Stonyfield Farms, producers of organic yogurt and other dairy products, where she responds to customer questions on the company’s “Ask a Nutritionist” web feature and writes its monthly Wellness Moosletter. She also assists in product development through researching and recommending certain amounts of ingredients—for example, she says she gave a strong argument to include the Vitamin D that’s been added throughout the company’s product line. When it comes down to it, Koenig says that knowledge is key—and she can help provide that with her services. “Ignorance is not bliss,” she says. “I don’t know who made that expression. The reality is that information can help you choose and make good choices.” VICKI KOENIG, MS, RD, CDN 7 Innis Avenue New Paltz, NY 12561 845-255-2398

Q-Search, Inc. Raizman Auto, Ltd. Red Pump Studio Retro Systems Rocking Horse Ranch Rosalind Robertson Schain & Company, CPA Schunk IT Consulting Seakill Custom Home Builders, Inc. Shapers of New Paltz Shawangunk Wine Trail Ship Lantern Inn Slotnick Signs and Designs Sobel Orthotics & Shoes St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital State Farm Insurance - Jim DeMaio Agency Studio One Hair Design Sunbelt Business & Practice Brokers Sunray Mobility Services, Inc. That Look Interior Design The Corporate Image Photo Studio The Ranch Pro Shop The River Connection, Inc. Time Warner Cable Town Tinker Tube Rental Ulster County BOCES Ulster County Community Foundation Ulster County Office of Employment and Training Ultimate Homes, Inc. Ultra Seal Corporation Unison Arts and Learning Center Van Vliet Orthodontics Village Barber Walden Savings Bank Wallkill View Farm Market & Greenhouse WAMC Northeast Public Radio Waring Storage Water Solutions of New Paltz, Inc. Whitecliff Vineyard & Winery, LLP Wilklow Orchards Willow Realty Wingate at Ulster Woodstock Inn on the Millstream Yaun Co. Inc. Members who renewed as of August 15.




LETS MAKE A DIFFERENCE TOGETHER A strong business community benefits the whole community. In this issue, Membership Director M. Catherine Hyland explores the human side of connecting with and through the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce.


embership Director M. Catherine Hyland recently launched The Business Connection. A cocktail of brainstorming and networking, The Business Connection is a small-group, by-invitationonly meeting focusing upon issues faced by the Hudson Valley business community. In this month’s Membership Matters column, Cathy sat down to answer a few questions about this important monthly event. What gave you the idea to start The Business Connection? MCH: We are a Regional Chamber of Commerce—our members may be in any one of six counties (Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, Orange, Ulster, or Greene). National media cannot tell us what’s going on in our region. We needed to communicate better with each other. Who is invited? MCH: Newer and veteran members alike— it’s a meeting of great and creative minds. Why do people come? MCH: Our members come because A: people like to be helpful and included in collaborative efforts and B: they know I’ll bake something delicious! Have you made any changes based on something you learned at a meeting? 28

MCH: It’s not a change, but I’m reinforcing the customer service aspect of membership. I learned from Patrick Turner of Little Pond Consulting that “if our clients do not have a reason to look beyond us, they never will.” What does the Chamber gain from The Business Connection? MCH: By connecting our members, communicating more effectively, and frequently organizing collaborative gatherings we gain the faith of our membership and they trust that we are doing all we can to benefit them. What connections have been made at the meetings? MCH: The real connections have been information related. The local business climate in some industries was actually up. Walter Marquez of The Antiques Barn at Water Street Market reported an increase in business, noting that “during a recession, the treasures come out of the closet.” What is your favorite thing about The Business Connection? MCH: The camaraderie that is quickly created between members. Any closing words? MCH: When a business joins, we do not take for granted that they know how to realize the


Wealth Management Jason Beach Paychex Kristina Hidalgo Pine Haven B&B Cathy Hyland New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce Peter A. Ingellis Ideal Cleaning Solutions Jeff Mehl Daybreak Virtual Office Solutions Lucy Paradies New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce Amanda R. Potts Tress Olay Patrick Turner Little Pond Consulting

benefits of membership. Our Membership Success Committee and staff welcome opportunities to interact with our members. If a member cannot attend an event, we encourage them to send an employee instead. Every member business receives visibility and promotion without attending events, but relationships are created by showing up and connecting with other members. Our lives, business and otherwise, are about relationships. People buy people. M. Catherine Hyland Membership Director



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257 Main Street New Paltz, NY 12561

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