Syracuse Woman Magazine - July 2022

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

july GUEST COMMENTARY Bridget Rooney In the heart of summer fun.................................................. 6

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OUT & ABOUT Visit CNY's wine country........................................................................8 SPECIAL FEATURE Karen Mihalyi & Alison Mullan-Stout Connecting music to peace.......................................................10

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WISE FEATURED ENTREPRENEURS Pitch Finalists.............................................................................. 16 ON THE COVER Michaela Medici Defying the odds.................................................................... 19

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WOMEN'S HEALTH Upstate Cord Blood Bank celebrates five years of operation............................................................................... 24 Healthy Eating: The grill is not just for men...................26 This summer, slow down and enjoy the little things.........................................................................28

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NSPIRE Elizabeth Karpen...................................................................... 30 Jill Gallagher............................................................................... 32 McKenzie Houseman.............................................................. 34 UPCOMING EVENTS............................................................................. 36

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IMOVERS & SHAKERS........................................................................ 38

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GUEST COMMENTARY

In the heart of summer fun Bridget Rooney

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yracuse, Onondaga County, and all of Central New York are excited to once again welcome the summer season with open arms. With plenty of sun, shows and savory sips, Syracuse is your one-stop destination to experience a perfect weekend adventure, a fun family affair or a unique and

spontaneous trip. With summer festivals happening nearly every weekend through September, your schedule is sure to book up quickly. Syracuse is home to a wonderfully diverse population of welcoming communities, and summertime is when we get to celebrate them all. From Greek and Polish to Middle Eastern and Macedonian, Syracusans and visitors have the opportunity to come together, eat traditional and worldly cuisines, and celebrate the many customs that have shaped our city. Most festivals are free and family oriented. When you’re not filling up at festivals, you can find dozens of food trucks Downtown and throughout the county. The very popular Syracuse Food Truck Association rounds up tons of trucks every Tuesday at Shoppingtown Mall in Dewitt, Wednesdays at the Great Northern Mall in Clay, and Fridays at the Everson Museum of Art Downtown. Choices ranging from American BBQ, loaded baked potatoes, sweet treats and more hit the streets for you to enjoy no matter what you’re in the mood for. In the last 10 years, the craft beverage scene has exploded in the Central New York and Finger Lakes Regions. Visit Syracuse has affiliated with regional beverage partners to offer the official Sip on Syracuse (SOS) Beverage Trail, which features 25 of the finest wineries, breweries, cideries, and distilleries in the area. Sample farm-to-table, family-run businesses along the trail while uncovering the incredible views and brews the Syracuse area has to offer. Music is in the air, and it flows throughout the region. The St. Joseph’s Health Amphitheater at Lakeview invites a variety of genres such as top country stars, classic rock legends, solo pop artists, and kid-friendly bands to perform shows all summer long. Attendees get to enjoy their favorite bands and musicians with amazing sunset views overlooking Onondaga Lake. Premier artists such as Kenny Chesney, Earth Wind & Fire and Sting are set to take the stage this 2022 season to name a few. Other venues throughout the county that feature local and national recording artists are Coleman's Authentic Irish Pub, Sharkey’s in Liverpool, Kegs Canalside in Jordan, and Paper Mill Island in Baldwinsville, to name a few. Green Lakes State Park is one of Syracuse’s top summer spots. The perfect place for golfing, walking, jogging and swimming, this park is an ideal spot for packing a picnic and spending the day enjoying the calm turquoise waters. With plenty of playground areas, charcoal grills, and lifeguards on duty, it’s a lovely spot for a fun-filled family day. Green Lakes also offers glass bottom kayaks for both single and double kayakers. Another notable spot to get outside and enjoy is Chittenango Falls State Park. This waterfall stands at 167 feet tall, giving visitors the ability to enjoy the view from the top or trek it gorge-side to experience a new perspective from below. Skaneateles, the quintessential Finger Lakes Village, is another picturesque summertime spot to visit. Take a day to enjoy this quaint community filled with shops, restaurants, bistros and more, or walk near the lake and just relax. From delicious foods and drinks to top-tier entertainment and amazing outdoor activities, Syracuse has something for everyone to enjoy. No matter what you choose, you’re sure to have a great time. This summer, we invite visitors to join the residents of our welcoming community and celebrate everything Syracuse and Central New York. For more tips on how to enjoy your summer, head to www.VisitSyracuse.com.

SyracuseWomanMag.com contact@syracusewomanmag.com

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David Tyler dtyler@eaglenewsonline.com

DESIGN

Andrea Reeves

PHOTOGRAPHERS Alice G. Patterson Ashley Casey Jason Klaiber Eric Rose David Tyler

CONTRIBUTORS Ashley Casey Kate Hanzalik Jason Klaiber Donna Knapp Lorna Oppedisano

Bridget Rooney Eric Rose Ken Sturtz Jennifer Wing

Cover photo by Alice G. Patterson

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Unlike any other publication in the Syracuse area, our feature articles address major topics that interest local women. Each issue includes articles on health, fashion, fitness, finance, home matters, dining, lifestyle and personal perspectives, as well as a spotlight on local Syracuse women. Ads are due on the 15th of the month prior to publication. The print magazines will be distributed locally in over 350 locations and will be in your inbox electronically by the middle of every month. The publication is available free of charge.

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The magazine is published 12 times a year by Community Media Group, LLC and Eagle Publications, 2501 James St., Suite 100, Syracuse, NY 13206 Copyright © 2022 Community Media Group, LLC. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or republished without the consent of the publishers. Syracuse Woman Magazine is not responsible for unsolicited submissions, manuscripts, photos or artwork. All such submissions become the property of Community Media Group, LLC and will not be returned.

Bridget Rooney is a digital marketing strategist with Visit Syracuse. JU LY 2022

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OUT & ABOUT

Visit CNY’s wine country

THREE WINE TRAILS... LESS THAN 90 MINUTES AWAY FROM SYRACUSE Jennifer Wing

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here is so much to see and do in each of New York’s diverse wine regions and you can do it all your own way! Plan your next trip with these helpful resources from the state’s Wine Trail Network and I LOVE NY (New York Department of Economic Development.) One way to see the diverse landscapes of New York State is by visiting its wineries. Some are nestled into sloping lakeshores while others are tucked into the woods, or part of a scenic rural vista. How to visit varies, too. Depending on the experience, you may take a bus tour or limousine service or even a bicycle or boat. Or perhaps you’ll sip wine on a train, watching the countryside pass you by. Decide what you want your wine experience to look like and start planning now. With so many choices, it can be hard to decide where to go. Below are three options that are less than an hour and a half away.

Cayuga Lake Wine Trail

According to the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail brochure: “The CWT offers a variety that is unmatched in wine touring and tasting… Nowhere else will travelers experience such a multitude of premium wines, attractions, comfortable lodgings, fine restaurants, friendly people and splendid scenery.” The first organized and longest-running wine trail in America was established in 1983 to promote wineries located within the Cayuga Lake American Viticultural Area (AVA) as a collective, according to cayugawinetrail.com. “From the first sip to your last look at the lake, the Cayuga Lake Wine Trail will impress and inspire you. We call it America’s First Wine Trail, but you truly choose your own path when you visit the wineries, soak in the scenery and make memorable moments with friends. “Wining and dining are favorite pastimes, but there is so much more to explore along Cayuga Lake. From secluded waterfalls to lakefront restaurants, this quintessential Finger Lake sets the scene for unforgettable day trips and getaways.” Wineries include: Americana Vineyards – 4367 E. Covert Road, Interlaken; 888-600-8067, americanavineyards.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Monday. Dog-friendly with amenities that include wine slushies, a taproom and restaurant. Buttonwood Grove Winery - 5986 State Route 89, Romulus; 607-869-9760, buttonwoodgrove.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Featuring a cidery and wine slushies, this winery also has accommodations available, with four cabins available from April through November. Cayuga Ridge Estate Winery – 6800 Route 89, Ovid; 800-598-9463, cayugaridgewinery.com. Open 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Dog-friendly, featuring a gift shop and restaurant. Goose Watch Winery – 5480 State Route 89, Romulus; 315-549-2599, goosewatch.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday. Dog-friendly, has water access and a cidery. Hazlitt 1852 Wineries – 5712 Route 414, Hector; 607-546-9463, hazlitt1852.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Dog-friendly, features food and wine slushies. Hosmer Winery – 7020 State Route 89, Ovid; 888-467-9463, hosmerwinery.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Dog-friendly. Knapp Winery – 2770 Ernsberger Road, Romulus; 607-930-3495, knappwine.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Amenities include distilleries, wine slushies and a restaurant.

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Long Point Winery – 1485 Lake Road, Aurora; 315-364-6990, longpointwinery.com. Open noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Featuring boat access and a winery. Lucas Vineyards – 3862 County Road 150, Interlaken; 800-682-WINE, lucasvineyards.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Featuring wine slushies. Montezuma Winery – 2981 US Route 20, Seneca Falls; 315-568-8190, montezumawinery.com. Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday. Dog-friendly, with amenities including a meadery, distilleries and wine slushies. Montezuma Winery Six Eighty Cellars – 3050 Swick Road, Ovid; 315-530-2663, sixtyeightcellars.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Dog-friendly, accommodations available. Rasta Ranch Vineyards – 5882 Rt. 414, Hector; 607-546-2974, rastaranchvineyards.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday. Featuring live music. Six Mile Creek Vineyard – 1551 Slaterville Road, Ithaca; 607-272-9463, sixmilecreek.com. Open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. Featuring distilleries as well. Swedish Hill Winery – 4565 State Route 414, Romulus; 607-403-0029, swedishhill.com. Open 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Tuesday. Dog-friendly, featuring a cidery, distilleries and wine slushies. Thirsty Owl Wine Company – 6861 State Route 89, Ovid; 866-869-5805, thirstyowl.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday to Saturday, 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sunday. Dog-friendly, amenities include a boat access, cidery and restaurant.

Seneca Lake Wine Trail

According to senecalakewine.com, Seneca Lake Wine Trail wineries are dedicated to upholding high levels of cleanliness and best practices to help protect staff, the local communities and visitors. For more information call the Wine Trail Administrative Office at 877-536-2717. The wine trail wineries include: Anthony Road Wine Company – 1020 Anthony Road, Penn Yan; 315-536-2182, anthonyroadwine.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, last tasting at 4 p.m. Atwater Vineyards – 5055 NY 414, Burdett; 607-546-8463, atwatervineyards.com. Open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Monday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday. Other beverages available. Bagley’s Poplar Ridge Vinyards – 9782 NY 414, Hector; 607-582-6421, bagleysprv.com. Open daily 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., with last tasting at 4:30 p.m. Pet-friendly. Belhurst Estate Winery – 4069 West Lake Road, Geneva; 315-781-0201, ext. 8, belhurst.com. Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily; tastings end at 7:15 p.m. Featuring three hotels, two restaurants, winery and craft beer and a spa-salon. Boundary Breaks – 1568 Porter Covert Road, Lodi; 607-474-5030, boundarybreaks.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily for outside tastings only. Pet-friendly. Castel Grisch Winery – 3380 County Road 28, Watkins Glen; 607-535-9614. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Pet-friendly. Caywood Vineyards – 9666 NY 414 Hector; 607-582-7230, caywoodvineyards.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Pet-friendly. Chateau Lafayette Reneau – 5081 NY 414, Hector; 607-546-2062, clrwine.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Pet-friendly, lodging on-site, other beverages available.

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CK Torrey Ridge Winery & Meadery – 2770 NY 14, Penn Yan; 315-536-1210, ckcellars.com. Open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Pet-friendly. Fox Run Vineyards – 670 NY 14, Pen Yan; 315-536-4616, foxrunvineyards.com. Tasting room open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, last tasting is at 5:30 p.m. each day. Café is open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Pet-friendly, dining on-site. Fruit Yard Winery – 5060 NY 14, Dundee; 607-243-8866, fruityardwinery.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, last tasting 4:30 p.m., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, last tasting 3:30 p.m. Fulkerson Winery – 5576 NY 14, Dundee; 607-243-7883, fulkersonwinery.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Featuring u-pick fruit and lodging on-site. Glenora Wine Cellars – 5435 New York 14, Dundee; 800-243-5513, glenora.com. Open 10 a.m. through 6 p.m. daily with a sunset service from 6-8 p.m. Friday and Saturday (June 1-Sept. 30 hours.) Featuring dining, a picnic area and lodging. J.R. Dill Winery – 4922 New York 414, Burdett; 607-546-5757, jrdillwinery.com. Open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Pet-friendly, with a picnic area. Lakewood Vineyards – 4024 NY 14, Watkins Glen; 607-535-9252, lakewoodvineyards.com. Open from 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Pet-friendly. Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars – 9224 NY 414, Lodi; 607-582-6011, lamoreauxwine.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Pet-friendly. Leidenfrost Vineyards – 5677 NY 414, Hector; 607-546-2800, leidenfrostwine.com. Open 10 a.m to 5 p.m. daily, last tasting at 4:30 p.m. Pet-friendly. Miles Wine Cellars – 168 Randall Crossing Road, Himrod; 607-243-7742, mileswinecellars.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Pet-friendly, with lodging on-site. Penguin Bay Winery – 6075 NY 414, Hector; 607-546-5115, penguinbaywinery.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Monday. Pet-friendly. Prejean Winery – 2834 NY 14, Penn Yan; 315-536-7524, prejeanwinery. com. Open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily. Seneca Shore Wine Cellars – 929 Davy Road, Penn Yan; 315-536-0882, senecawine.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 4:30 p.m. last seating and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, last seating 3:30 p.m. Tabora Farm and Winery – 4978 Lakemont-Himord Road, Dundee; 607-678-4343, taborafarmandwinery.com. Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Food/dining available. Three Brothers Wineries and Estates – 623 Lerch Road, Geneva; 515-585-4432, 3brotherswinery.com. Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Dining available on-site; other beverages available. Toast Winery – 4499 NY 14, Rock Stream; 607-535-4277, toastwineryflx.com. Open 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 10 a.m. through 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The newest winery on the trail. Ventosa Vineyards – 3440 NY 96A, Geneva; 315-719-0000, ventosavineyards.com. Open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Features dining on-site at Café Tosacana. Wagner Vineyards Estate Winery – 9322 St. Rt. 414 Winery, Lodi, NY 14860, 607-582-6450, wagnervineyards.com. Tours & tastings at a decades-old lakeside winery with a cafe & brewery specializing in craft beers. SYR ACUSE WOMAN MAGA ZI N E

White Springs Farm Winery – 4200 NY 14, Geneva; 315-781-9463, whitespringswinery.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday last tasting at 4:30 p.m., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday last tasting at 3:30 p.m. Other beverages available.

Keuka Lake Wine Trail

On keukawinetrail.com: “The Finger Lakes of New York is the largest and most celebrated wine producing region in the Eastern United States. At its heart lies Keuka Lake, whose spectacular beauty and glacially- deposited soils inspired early grape cultivation and the birth of America’s wine industry in 1860. Our wineries craft some of the most beautifully balanced and vibrant wines, and we take equal pride in the warmth of our hospitality. Experience a truly memorable getaway. Visit us anytime – many wineries are open daily, year round – we hope to see you soon along the Keuka Lake Wine Trail.” Wineries include: Heron Hill Winery - 9301 County Road 76, Hammondsport; 800-441-4241, heronhillcom. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Hunt Country Vineyards - 4021 Italy Hill Road, Branchport, huntwines.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 1 1 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays. Keuka Spring Vineyards - 243 E. Lake Road, Penn Yan; 315-536-3147, keukaspringwinery.com. Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Vineyard View Winery - 2971 Williams Hill Road, Keuka Park; 3 15-694-7262, vineyardviewwinery.com. Open noon to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sunday and Monday (June through August hours.) Weis Vineyards - 10014 Day Road, Hammondsport; 607-284-4011. Open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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SPECIAL FEATURE

KAREN MIHALYI & ALISON MULLAN-STOUT

Connecting music to peace Lorna Oppedisano

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hen she was in her mid-20s, Karen Mihalyi read the book “What Color Is Your Parachute? Your Guide to a Lifetime of Meaningful Work and Career Success.” It gave her three answers. “One was be an activist. One was do healing work — counseling. And the other was do music — do the choir. Lo and behold, here I am, many years later, and that’s how I’ve arranged my life,” Karen said. Now, after decades of leading the Syracuse Community Choir as founder and executive director, Karen is restructuring the organization with the help of Alison Mullan-Stout, assistant to the director. Karen discovered her love of singing at a young age, when she organized a singing group that performed around the small town where she grew up. She followed that path through her childhood, singing in choirs and musicals at school. “I was going to study music at Syracuse University, but then the Vietnam War happened,” she said. Karen decided to put all her efforts into stopping the war. When students went on strike against the war, she dropped out of college to devote her time and energy to peace work. After spending a year in Europe, she returned and cofounded the Women’s Information Center and worked on antiwar projects. Around that

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time, she met and learned from singer/activist Holly Near, who Karen credits as the first person she heard talk about the importance of cultural work and the power that music and art have in that space. Karen’s next big step in organizing others into song was during the inaugural year for Woman Harvest, a weekend of workshops, singing and safe space for conversation created by the Women’s Information Center. She put out a call for interest and had about 100 women singing. Thinking back, she admitted it was daunting, since she had never arranged music or directed a choir before. It ended up being an amazing experience, she said. “To stand in front of these 100 beautiful women, singing — singing is the most amazing thing — but then to put together something that was in harmony and to raise my arms and everyone would sing, it was thrilling,” Karen said. “People talk about directing, but if you’re really there and you’re looking at everybody, it’s so beautiful and so vulnerable.” She was hooked. They continued to gather the large women’s choir at Women Harvest each year and even had smaller performances Continued on page 12

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SPECIAL FEATURE

Connecting music to peace from page 11 during the year, including a trip to sing at a women’s march in Washington, D.C. “That was an amazing thing. A lot of different kinds of women joined in,” Karen said. “We were singing and witnessing and soothing and giving courage to the women who were being arrested.” In the early 1980s, Karen’s peacemaking work took her to Nicaragua with three other women, an experience that eventually inspired the creation of the Syracuse Community Choir. “That was my first taste of what it’s like to live in a country that’s fighting a war, but also the incredible poverty much of the world lives

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in. But what people were doing in this revolution to create a different society was really amazing,” Karen said. “One of the biggest takeaways I got from that trip was that art belongs to the people.” Karen was driven to found an organization open to anyone and not impeded by money or perceived talent. With that, the Syracuse Community Choir began in 1985. “We believed that everyone could sing, that everyone had a right to participate in creating beauty and art, and that we would do whatever was necessary to look at the barriers that kept people from participating,” Karen remembered. “What we tried to do and we’ve

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tried to do since then is create the kind of world that we want, right in the choir.” Since its founding, the choir has grown to include a separate children’s choir and teen choir and hold two main concerts each year — a winter solstice performance and summer solstice performance — along with other performances at local performing venues, rallies and schools. In 2016, Alison saw a flyer for the choir’s performance and decided to attend.

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“I was just blown away. There were puppets coming down the aisles and there was humming in the dark,” she said. “There’s a real message to the music. I’ve always loved music and loved singing with people.” Just as Karen had been hooked that first year of the Women’s Harvest choir, Alison, too, was hooked. Initially helping in a volunteer capacity with several projects, Alison’s role in the Syracuse Community Choir grew until she joined the staff. Along with a small number of paid staff, there are many volunteer opportunities in the organization. Continued on page 14

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SPECIAL FEATURE

Connecting music to peace from page 13 “It’s a way for people to be involved and to have a role,” Alison said. “As I started to get more involved, it really gave me a deeper sense of community.” When the pandemic hit, it impacted the choir drastically. In-person rehearsals and performances halted. The team, led by Karen and Alison, set up virtual programming for Wednesday evenings, when they would typically hold rehearsals. Along with singing, they also held social justice programming. When it could be done safely, they did sing-outs to visit and sing with members who had limited or no access to technology.

These past couple years have given the team an opportunity to evaluate what they want the organization to look like and what goals they want to achieve moving forward. “The pandemic means that we have to reorganize everything,” Karen said. “It’s been daunting really to figure out how.” As Karen begins to transition to a smaller role, they know no one can take her place, Alison said. She explained they are thinking about what a less hierarchical structure might look like and applying for grant funding for additional staffing.

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Their commitment to accessibility and diversity in the choir remains a top priority, Karen said. “We have these goals that are connected to worldwide movements — worldwide desires to live with equity, to figure out, ‘How do we create a world where every voice matters?’” Karen said. “That’s our theme statement: we believe that everyone can sing and every voice matters.” SWM For more information on the Syracuse Community Choir, including upcoming performances, visit syracusecommunitychoir.org.

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COVER STORY

MICHAELA MEDICI Defying the odds

Michaela Medici’s beauty studio opened at the start of the pandemic, but has managed to survive and thrive. Now she’s expanding. Ken Sturtz

"I came into 2020 with my spirits high, ready to conquer the world, open a business.” —Michaela Medici

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COVER STORY

MICHAELA MEDICI

Defying the odds

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ost people would assume Michaela Medici knew at an early age that she wanted to be a stylist and open a salon. After all, the 30-year-old now owns a trendy downtown Syracuse beauty and wellness studio that caters to the hair, makeup and skincare needs of its clients. But most people would be wrong. True, Medici fell in love with hair and makeup at an early age. She didn’t have to look far for inspiration: her grandfather owned a salon in Cazenovia for 25 years and two uncles owned salons in the area. And in high school she always seemed to be getting her hair and makeup done or doing it for someone else. “It’s definitely something I’ve always been passionate about, but I didn’t think that I could make it a career,” she says. While growing up in Syracuse Medici wasn’t really sure what she wanted to do and says she wasn’t particularly eager for college. At first, she thought about becoming a nurse and went to Onondaga Community College. She liked the idea of helping people, but the math and science classes turned her off. Then she changed direction and attended St. Bonaventure University, studying journalism. Afterward she began working at several bars and restaurants in and around Syracuse. “At 20, you’re making tons of money and it’s so much fun, but you realize that it’s not something you want to do forever,” she says. Medici says her mother didn’t want her bartending all night and sleeping all day, so she took a part time job at the front desk of a salon. She loved working there and interacting with the

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people. The experience helped push her to enter beauty school. She quickly realized that while she loved beauty school, it was going to be a challenge since she was still working two jobs and living on her own. Each day Medici got up around 6 a.m. and got to the salon before 8 a.m. to answer emails and set things up. She’d dart out to beauty school, which ran from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and then bartend until 10:30 p.m. or 11 p.m. Some days she had to change clothes three times. Between work and school, she rarely had time to socialize with friends. It took her about a year to complete all 1,000 hours of coursework. She never considered quitting, she says, because she was constantly looking ahead to the future when she’d have just one job that she loved. “As much as it was a grind it was also so exciting,” she says. After graduating from beauty school in 2015, Medici worked at several salons over the next few years, first as a commissioned stylist and later as an independent contractor renting a booth. She also did hair and makeup on the weekends for weddings. She enjoyed the work, finding particular satisfaction in bringing out a client’s inner beauty and confidence. Medici soon realized that as much as she enjoyed what she was doing, she eventually wanted to strike out on her own. Her uncle, a sales representative in the beauty industry, advised her that the number one thing that takes down a booth renter is themselves.

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“When you become a booth renter you become a small business,” she says. “You’re responsible for everything and it was a big investment.” She gained valuable experience from renting a booth and continued building a following. Medici soon decided she was ready to open her own business. To save money she moved out of her apartment and into a house on Tipperary Hill with two friends and began searching for a space to lease. She found a 4,500-square-foot space on West Genesee Street, just off Clinton Square. “So, I came into 2020 with my spirits high, ready to conquer the world, open a business,” Medici says. It was a big commitment for the 27-year-old, but she signed the lease in March 2020, naming the business The Emerson after the street she and her friends were living on. The pandemic quickly slammed the brakes on construction. Medici had no idea when her contractor might be able to resume work. She endured “heart-wrenching anxiety” in those chaotic, uncertain days. “It was hard,” she says. “If you’ve never owned a business you don’t know what the steps are.” With construction halted and salons forced to close anyway, Medici found herself out of a job. In need of a way to stay afloat financially, she began assembling weekly glamour care packages and delivering them to her clients. Continued on page 22 SYR ACUSE WOMAN MAG.COM


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COVER STORY

Defying the odds from page 22

“I wanted it to be an experience for the client... I wanted every single person who walked in here to feel invited, included, worthy, comfortable.”— Michaela Medici

She hung on and says that as difficult as everything was she was moved by the support of many of her clients. Medici was able to begin construction again and pushed ahead. She possessed a vision for her business’s style and design down to what the place was going to smell like. She wanted to counter the hectic and crowded feel that salons sometimes have. “I wanted it to be an experience for the client,” she says. “I wanted every single person who walked in here to feel invited, included, worthy, comfortable.” She chose an open, minimalist concept and a design and name that made the space somewhat ambiguous. At first glance it could be an art gallery or photography studio as easily as a salon. “I wanted people to walk by and not be quite sure what it is,” she says. “It can be whatever you want it to be.” The Emerson opened in November 2020. At first it was just Medici, a friend and a former co-worker from another salon. Before the trio could add anyone else the pandemic forced the business to close down. Medici felt defeated and said she was very depressed. She’d sunk so much of herself into the business – her boyfriend had even proposed at The Emerson in March 2020. Adding to the pressure was the knowledge that it wasn’t just her future that was hanging in the balance. “Now I’m not only responsible for myself, I’m responsible for a team,” she says. “Looking back, they believed in me and I can’t thank them enough for that.” JU LY 2022

She refused to give up, opening the business for retail only and limping along by selling products and gift cards. In 2021, things began to improve. Medici was able to reopen and business started picking up. Today she is busier than ever. Her business has 16 stylists and employees and is open nearly seven days a week. She still clocks about 40 hours a week as a stylist, booking 18 months in advance. She carves out a couple days a week to handle other responsibilities such as paying bills, handling human resources and running the business’s social media accounts. She still does hair and makeup for weddings on the weekends. Medici says The Emerson has enough space that she regularly hosts pop-up events featuring things such as yoga and reiki. It’s also frequently rented out for events such as bridal showers and brunches. The Emerson will soon expand, adding about 2,000 square feet of space from a former restaurant next door. Medici says she needs more room to offer facials and would like to open a juice bar. She also plans to build a separate bridal suite to accommodate the growing number of bridal parties that get ready there. Construction is scheduled to begin this summer. As if she weren’t busy enough between running her business and planning an expansion, Medici is also getting married on New Year’s Eve. But she doesn’t seem to mind the chaos. “I think I thrive in chaos, but I think I was also put here as part of my greater plan to show people you literally can do whatever you want,” she says. “Every single day I’m just so grateful to be here.” SWM FOOD, FASH ION & ENTERTAI N M ENT EDITION


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WOMEN'S HEALTH

Upstate Cord Blood Bank celebrates five years of operation

MOTHERS DELIVERING CORD BLOOD AT BIRTH HELP SAVE LIVES

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he Upstate Cord Blood Bank, the region’s only not-for-profit public cord blood donation center, is dedicated to saving and improving lives through the life-saving gift of cord blood. The term “cord blood” may sound daunting, but it’s actually quite simple. After a baby is born and the umbilical cord is cut, the blood remaining in the umbilical cord is called cord blood. Cord blood is abundant in Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSCs), which are blood-forming stem cells, similar to those contained within bone marrow. These stem cells can reconstitute an immune system, and have the ability to treat, repair, and/ or replace damaged cells in the body. For those suffering from blood cancers such as leukemia and lymphoma, and as many as 80 other life-threatening diseases, a cord blood transplant might be the only hope of a cure. “Umbilical cord blood is typically discarded as medical waste,” said Dr. Matthew Elkins, medical director of the Upstate Cord Blood Bank. “We encourage expectant mothers to donate so

that lives may be potentially saved through this painless, five-minute process just moments after giving birth. Cord blood donation is completely safe for mother and baby; labor and delivery is not affected and no blood is taken from the newborn; it is only removed from the umbilical cord after birth. The designation of Upstate Cord Blood

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Bank as a public blood bank is important in that there is no cost to donate and donated cord blood is available to anyone who needs it. Once donated, the cord blood is stored in the bank and made available to transplant centers in the United States and throughout the world for patients in need. The cord blood units will be listed on national and international registries to

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be matched to patients who need them. Any units collected that are not suitable for transplantation may be made available to researchers, with parental approval, both at Upstate Medical University and around the country. Deciding whether to donate cord blood is best done during the early months of pregnancy. Various forms are completed by the expectant

parents and submitted directly to the cord blood bank. After delivery, the blood is removed from the umbilical cord and then packaged and transported to Upstate’s 20,000 square-foot facility that features a state of the art processing laboratory and cryogenic storage containers. The Upstate Cord Blood Bank, opened in 2017, operates under strict guidelines and protocols, established by state and federal health organizations, including the state Health Department; Food and Drug Administration; AABB Center for Cellular Therapies; and the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy. The center partners with Crouse Health, St. Joseph’s Health and Upstate Community Birthing Center to collect cord blood immediately after a baby is born. SWM To learn more, visit upstatecordbloodbank.com.

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HEALTHY EATING

The grill is not just for men

WOMEN TAKE CHARGE OF THE BARBECUE REVOLUTION Eric Rose

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ver the years, so much has changed in the average American household, and the traditional roles of men and women have changed drastically. Of course, I am stereotyping, but I think it is safe to say that in years past it was traditionally the woman’s role to do the shopping, plan the dinner and prepare everything. Except when the grill was involved! That’s only for men … (Ha Ha). People have been debating men and grills in different forums for a very long time. In an old Forbes magazine article, I stumbled across from 2010, Meghan Casserly explains why men love grilling: Grilling is sort of dangerous (there’s fire!), it lets dudes hang out together while also providing some sort of neutral entertainment (getting to watch one guy do stuff and possibly also criticizing him while he does it), and it requires minimal cleaning (self-explanatory). Casserly also notes that this is a particularly 20th-century American phenomenon — in early hunter-gatherer societies, cooking meat over a fire was largely women’s work, and in most of Southeast Asia, Mexico, and Serbia, for instance, it still is. The reason we associate grilling with men is, like many stubborn gender stereotypes, a product of the 1950s and suburbanization. Suburban homes with

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backyards led to the popularity of the backyard barbecue, and parenting books at the time stressed the importance of present fathers who’d spend time with their families, when in an earlier era they may have spent that free time at the pub with other dudes. Oh, how things have changed. More recent studies have shown that women are doing significantly more grilling these days. In fact, they are competing against the men and winning nationally sanctioned BBQ championships across the country. The Food Network and other similar channels look a lot different now, once dominated by males there is now more equality. Legends like Julia Childs, Cat Cora, Paula Deen, Lidia Bastianich, Ina Garten, Sara Moulton, Giada De Laurentis and Rachel Ray can be credited for paving the way for generations to come. Who stands behind the stoves and grills has forever changed, and we are much better for it. This Fourth of July, the backyard barbecues will be fired up and celebrations will be plentiful as it has truly become an American food experience. One thing that is sure to be different this year is that there will be significantly more women ‘MANning the grill.’

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Grill like a pro this summer with my expert tips:

If you want to become the next best grill master at your summer BBQ party or simply just up your grill game, follow my great tips on how to grill like a real professional. Although it may look like hard work, all you really need is a grill, a few tools, some delicious fresh ingredients, and of course, a little planning and patience. Pick out the best meats: You can grill almost any protein, but the leaner the protein the less forgiving the protein will be. Look for meat, pork and fish that has abundant amount of marbling throughout the muscle or a fattier content. After all, fat is flavor! Make sure your grill is ready: It is all in the preparation. You want to start your grill well in advance to make sure it is fully up to temperature. Use a grill brush to clean the surface thoroughly and right before grilling use a paper towel with a little vegetable oil and wipe the grates. When finished, keep the grill on for a little bit to burn off the particulates for next time. Proper tools: Make sure you invest in a good set of long handled tongs and turner to make sure you do not burn yourself. A good digital thermometer is a must. It is the key to ensuring the desired

Utica Greens Grilled Pizza

Grilled pizza can be topped with whatever you can imagine. The secret to a perfect one is not to put too many toppings on because the pizza will not cook properly. So less is more. Make it interactive and have guests make their own unique pizza or give my CNY favorite a try.

Makes 4 Pies INGREDIENTS:

DOUGH 1 ¼ oz. envelope active dry yeast (about 2¼ tsp.) 1 tsp. sugar ¹/³ cup (42 g) whole wheat flour 2½ tsp. kosher salt 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for bowl 3 cups (375 g) bread flour, plus more for surface GREENS 1 bunch Escarole 3 Tbsp. salted butter Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes ½ Tbsp. Pepper Relish 1 garlic clove ½ oz. Parmesan, finely grated (about ½ cup) ASSEMBLY Bread flour (for dusting) Extra-virgin olive oil (for brushing and drizzling) 1 1-lb. ball mozzarella, torn into bite-size pieces Step 1 Stir yeast, sugar, and 1¼ cups warm (not hot) water in the bowl of a stand mixer until yeast dissolves. Let sit until mixture is foamy, about 5 minutes.

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temperature. Meat is easy to cook because it can be grilled directly on the BBQ itself. However, other foods like vegetables and buns can get too burned (or even fall through the grates) if they are placed directly on the rack. Thankfully, there are tons of useful products that you can buy to elevate your grilling game. Consider purchasing a griddle or grill basket. Meatless Options: Want to impress you guest? Consider grilled options like vegetable crudité appetizer, Mexican street corn, kabobs, or the always impressive grilled pizza. It’s always a winner and you can even purchase pizza stones to put on your grill although the best flavor comes from cooking it directly on the grates. Grilling Basics: Bring your protein to room temperature before grilling so it cooks evenly. Before putting on the grill make sure you oil the surface. Season your protein well and avoid overly wet or sweet marinades during the grilling process. Know your temperatures (can be found easily on the web) and use a trusty thermometer. Let all proteins rest before serving for at least 4 minutes to allow for the juices to redistribute evenly. SWM

Step 2 Add whole wheat flour, salt, and 2 Tbsp. oil to yeast mixture and mix to combine. Fit mixer with dough hook and, with mixer on low speed, gradually add 3 cups (375 g) bread flour, mixing until a shaggy dough forms, about 4 minutes from when you start adding the flour. Stop mixer and scrape down sides of bowl to incorporate any dry bits into dough. Increase mixer speed to medium and knead until dough is smooth and shiny, about 5 minutes. Step 3 Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and knead briefly to bring together. Shape into a ball, place in a large lightly oiled bowl, and turn to coat. Cover bowl and let dough sit in warm draft-free spot until doubled in size, 1–1½ hours. Make your toppings while your dough is rising. Step 4 Clean and cut Escarole into small pieces. Heat butter in a large skillet over medium-high. Add escarole and season with salt, crushed red, and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they wilted and bright green. Remove from heat and stir in pepper relish, grated garlic, and parmesan cheese. Stir and set aside. This can be made a day ahead of time.

Step 5 Divide dough into 4 pieces. Working one at a time, gently shape into balls. Transfer to a lightly floured baking sheet and cover. Let sit 20–30 minutes. Step 6 Next place a ball of dough on a lightly floured surface and, using your fingers, press out to a 12” diameter. Prepare grill by turning half on medium heat and leaving the other half off or on very low. Step 7 Brush dough with oil. Place, oiled side down, on grill over direct heat and cook until large bubbles appear across surface, dough stiffens, and underside is dark brown, about 2 minutes. Brush top with oil, turn over, and cook just to lightly dry out second side, about 30 seconds. Move dough over to cooler side of grill. Top with portion of Utica greens mixture and ¼ of the mozzarella cheese. Carefully slide pizza back over direct heat. Cook until cheese is melted, and toppings are heated through, about 2 minutes. If dough is in danger of burning on underside but toppings need more time, return pizza to cooler side, cover grill, and cook another 1–2 minutes. Move to a cutting board to cut and serve.

REFERENCES From Adweek “Why the Backyard Grill Is a Guy Thing” https://www.adweek.com/ brand-marketing/why-backyard-grillguy-thing-150559/ From Nutrition Journal “Who’s cooking? Trends in US home food preparation by gender, education, and race/ethnicity from 2003 to 2016” https://nutritionj. biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/ s12937-018-0347-9 From Newsweek “Are Women Better Grillers Than Men?” https://www. newsweek.com/2014/08/29/arewomen-better-grillers-men-264941. html From The Telegraph “Why Are Men Drawn To The Rituals Of Barbecue” https://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thefilter/10941165/Why-are-men-drawnto-the-ritual-of-barbecues.html From Smithsonian magazine “Why Do Men Grill?” https://www. smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/whydo-men-grill-121562921/ From Forbes “Grilling, Guys, and the Great Gender Divide” https://www. forbes.com/2010/07/01/grilling-menwomen-barbecue-forbes-womantime-cooking.html From NPR “Women Chefs Still Walk ‘A Fine Line’ In The Kitchen” https://www.npr.org/sections/ thesalt/2018/08/31/639398136/ women-chefs-still-walk-a-fine-line-inthe-kitchen

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WOMEN'S HEALTH

This summer, slow down and enjoy the little things Donna Knapp

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entral New York summers are short, and it is easy to attempt to jam as many activities as possible into the few months we can classify as summer. When children are out of school, we default to filling their days with camps, play dates, day trips, etc. Amid playing chauffeur, event planner, chef, and referee, time for ourselves to rejuvenate and relax can go by the wayside. Even without children in the home, we often create an extensive list of summer to-do projects that always seem to be the priority over relaxation and leisure. We have all seen the memes on social media of the almost empty gas gauge or nearly depleted cell phone battery, with the tag lines of, “We wouldn’t let this happen to our car, cell phone, etc., so why do we let it happen to ourselves?” As women, we might look at these seemingly innocuous posts and think to ourselves, “Yeah, happens all the time.” We recognize that we deplete ourselves, but rarely do anything to slow our roll and relax and enjoy leisure time. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in 2019 that women engage in an average of 4.9 hours a day of leisure activities. Men on average spend 5.5 hours per day on leisure activities. The difference of .6 hours a day might not seem like a significant amount but extrapolated over the course of 12 months that equates to 9.1 less days per year women spend engaging in leisure and self-care! The most frequently identified leisure activity for men and women was watching TV. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has identified Eight Dimensions of Wellness that encompass a wholistic approach to overall health. SAMHSA “invites you to think of wellness as meaning being healthy in many dimensions of our lives. That includes the emotional, physical, occupational, intellectual, financial, social, environmental, and spiritual parts. These dimensions are interconnected, one dimension building on another.”

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If we focus all our attention in one or two dimensions, we are neglecting other areas that are necessary for overall health and wellbeing. If you visualize each dimension as a bucket, the time we devote to engaging in relaxation or leisure activities bolsters our emotional, social, environmental, physical, and spiritual dimensions when the stress of everyday life presents itself. The staff at Prevention Network has embraced the concept of the Eight Dimensions of Wellness and has incorporated the information into our prevention education presentations, parenting program, and social media messaging. We have also embedded the practice into the culture of our organization. We recognize the importance of attending to all the dimensions in our lives. As with any unfamiliar theory, it takes practice to remind ourselves to focus on our overall well-being in the different dimensions. Summers are prime moments to create lasting family memories. During the summer of 2022, the women of Prevention Network challenge you to carve out time for yourself to enjoy simple pleasures too. Here are a few of the ways we plan to practice self-care and spend our leisure time this summer. • Spend time away from the phone, going swimming and spending time on the water • Eating fresh ice cream, taking my dogs to new hiking spots in the area and spending time at Green Lakes • Reading by the water • Syracuse Mets games – favorite summer activities are baseball-related • S’mores around the campfire and cook outs • Sitting in the hammock in the backyard • Connecting with nature at beaches and waterfalls • Daily walks, eating healthy • Connecting to spirituality • Spending time outside in the shade • Starting the day with music, not the news • Putting things in your weekly schedule that make you feel good, like getting your nails done, a massage, or brunch • Growing flowers and herbs. • Reading on the front porch

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As you can see, our list does not involve activities that take a lot of time, money, or planning. Be spontaneous if the opportunity presents itself. I was recently presented with the last-minute prospect of a weekend away. I hesitated because I had plans with my family and loads of chores that needed to be completed. I realized that nothing I had planned was time sensitive or could not be rearranged. All I needed to do was embrace the moment and go for it. I am so glad I packed that bag and took a couple of days for me. The picture below is from my time away enjoying the simple pleasure of an ocean view. If you would like to learn more about SAMHSA’s Eight Dimensions of Wellness, you can find their “Step by Step Guide to Wellness” on our website at www.preventionnetworkcny.org under the resource tab, in the mindfulness/wellness section. Author and artist Mary Ann Radmacher reminds us that “It is of the small joys and little pleasures that the greatest of our days are built.” How are you going to engage with life’s simple pleasures this summer? I wish you many long walks, ice cream eating, porch reading days ahead. SWM

Celebrating over 12 years as a Medicare specialist Medicare consultation & enrollment services

Donna Knapp is a team leader in community engagement and development at Prevention Network.

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INSPIRE

ELIZABETH KARPEN

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Local businesswoman has treats to beat the heat Jason Klaiber

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aving spent the last 20 years in the ice cream biz, Syracuse resident Elizabeth Karpen sees to it that every cone handed out at her shop is sprinkled with love and every shake is swirled to perfection. The owner of Fifi’s Ice Cream & Sweets, a fixture in the Eastwood community, the 35-year-old has been a server of frozen treats by the intersection of Midler Avenue and James Street since her junior year of high school. Back then, the stand in that space was known as I’ll Be Dipped, but it was on the verge of being called Kristen’s under the ownership of Solvay businessman Kevin Marino, who passed away last month. Toward the close of Karpen’s college days, she discovered that her relied-upon place of employment break to break and summer to summer would be vacated, so she stepped in right then and there to carry the baton and keep the corner parlor going as a destination for those desiring delicious desserts. Already well-versed on the managerial side from her time spent scooping ice cream and picking up on all that could go wrong at Kristen’s, Karpen decided to put her experience to the test in 2008 by opening Fifi’s, which takes from a nickname given to her by her baby nephew. Then only 21, Karpen said looking back that it was a “scary” prospect to own and operate a business at that stage, though to take some of the load off, she knew to depend on assistance from her father if needed as well as the returning co-workers she had progressed with over the years. Roughly three seasons into Fifi’s run, it moved diagonally to a strip at 3021 James St., where it’s been ever since, as part of a development deal overseen by the owner of the block that included the establishment of a Kinney Drugs at the previous spot. With that slight relocation, Karpen found a way to incorporate indoor seating fitting about 25 people so the shop could stay open into the colder months, making it more of a year-round operation rather than a seasonal, weather-dependent one that would’ve lasted from the first glimpse of spring until partway through September. While directing greater attention to cakes for birthdays and various other celebrations, she went on to build up the menu with hot cocoa bombs, lattes and autumnal treats like pumpkin ice cream pie to better maintain the customer base at the far ends of the calendar. Despite its continuing success, Fifi’s has, nevertheless, not been without obstacles. On rainy days, for example, when the picnic tables to the side of the building are empty and the average person doesn’t immediately think of snagging ice cream, it can be tougher to draw customers back in, but the employees will turn to both delivery services and the creation of quippy social media posts to get the ball rolling again. SYR ACUSE WOMAN MAGA ZI N E

“That’s all you can do I guess, because when it rains, it rains,” Karpen said. On top of that, she feels thankful that so many local high schoolers apply for jobs at Fifi’s, many of them from her alma mater Henninger, but the downside is that she often has to repeat the cycle of hiring workers once they venture off to college and earn internships. Additionally, since it tends to be the first-ever job held by those applicants, she finds herself teaching the new faces a supplemental, introductory list of skills relating to customer service and food preparation. There are also those times when refrigeration equipment unpredictably breaks down after being overworked or overheated, but Karpen holds onto the belief that she and her ever-changing group of employees have had a “pretty lucky go at it overall.” Considering herself a natural born multitasker, Karpen was accustomed to carrying on a balancing act for roughly a decade as she split time between Fifi’s and a manager role at Luigi’s Italian Restaurant, all while learning additional tricks of the trade with every busy week. With the restaurant removed from the equation, those days of going back and forth are now over, however, and she can focus more time on decorating “extravagant” treats and inventing “unique” specials for the Fifi’s menu. “Before that, I would’ve had to rely on the younger employees to execute the ideas in my head, and not enough time would’ve gone into preparing these items or making sure they’re in stock,” she said. Through it all—from the second half of her high school years to today—Karpen’s favorite part of serving ice cream and other desserts has been to see the smiling children eager to reward their sweet tooth, especially when they mix in gummy bears and Nerds candy as toppings without blinking an eye. Even if some people standing in line take 10 minutes to decide on their choice, she also appreciates seeing customers gander in awe at the expanded list of flavors on the menu, which includes smoothie bowls, flurries, and sundaes from caramel apple crunch to rocky road. There are also healthier options offered, such as sugar-free dishes. For those younger age groups and others who wish to join in, Karpen said she’s also currently ironing out the details for a summer reading program tied to the shop that gets participants off their phones, at least temporarily. In the past, Fifi’s has helped to organize other events like school fundraisers, Easter egg hunts and gift certificate giveaways. SWM The shop is open from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 2 to 10 p.m. on Fridays, noon to 10 on Saturdays, and noon to 9 on Sundays. For more info, head over to fifisicecream.com.

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INSPIRE

JILL GALLAGHER

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Family and fashion make every day a special occasion Ashley M. Casey

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oyce Seubert always insisted on saving her most precious pieces of jewelry for a special occasion. As an organist for St. John the Evangelist Church in Camden, Joyce had more than 1,000 such occasions — weddings, funerals and ecumenical services — to bring out her best. “She had some beautiful pieces of jewelry that my father and my uncle and my brother gave her,” recalled her daughter, Jill Gallagher. But after Joyce was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2013, it became clear to the family that each day with Joyce was a special occasion. They encouraged her to enjoy her jewelry, so she would pair her dazzling accessories with pajamas and a bathrobe around the house. Gallagher and her mom bonded over their love of fashion and a shared dream. “The two of us always wanted to open a boutique together,” Gallagher said. While Joyce would not be physically present for that dream to come to fruition — she passed away June 28, 2018 — she has been there in spirit as her daughter has built Boutique Joycé in the village of Manlius. “Her friends will carpool and come visit me at the store,” Gallagher said. “They love to look through the store and say, ‘Oh, your mother would have loved this.’” A business teacher by day, Gallagher opened Boutique Joycé in early 2020, just weeks before the COVID-19 pandemic descended. With rent due and vendors to pay, Gallagher was understandably nervous. “It was a scary time, but our community was so supportive. We made it through,” said Gallagher. The boutique survived — and thrived — during the pandemic thanks to Gallagher’s social media savvy and the strong support system that is her family: her son, Jack, a student at FayettevilleManlius High School; her husband Brian, a school administrator; and her brother David, who often pitches in at the store on weekends. “I’ll be here a lot in the evenings and my husband takes care of dinner,” she said. The greater Manlius business community has helped the boutique blossom as well. For starters, Gallagher said, she is surrounded in the Tops Plaza by businesses owned by women or geared toward women’s interests, such as Dazzle, Cork Monkey and SkyTop Coffee. “It’s a very women-driven plaza,” she said. Gallagher has made connections outside her immediate neighbors as well. “If I don’t have something, perhaps I'll send them to The Station [603],” she said. “We point customers in the direction of each other’s stores.”

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Boutique Joycé offers women’s and men’s apparel, accessories and other items such as candles and body care products. When it came to selecting products, Gallagher first sought out brands she and her mother favored. “She was just so chic and sophisticated,” Gallagher said of her mom. “She was a musician as well, so that came through with her creativity.” Joyce served as St. John’s organist for more than 50 years. In 2011, Joyce received an Immaculata Award from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Syracuse in recognition of her years of service. “Never be afraid to try new things. It’s what you like, not what everybody else likes. Everyone is an individual,” Gallagher said of the style lessons her mother passed on to her. Gallagher has inherited Joyce’s love of accessories, evidenced by the collection of gold, silver and black bangles on her wrists and a statement ring with a vibrant palette. Accessories can transform a few basic wardrobe items into several outfits. That versatility is important to Gallagher as a busy teacher, mom and entrepreneur. “Going from being a teacher to working in the store several days a week, I try to wear something that is versatile, business casual, but also on trend,” she said. After more than two years of working from home, shoppers are anxious to refresh their work wardrobes for their return to the office, Gallagher said. “I think people were sick of being in sweatpants and no makeup for a while, so they’re ready to get back at it,” she said. Gallagher strives to attract shoppers of all ages. Fashion bridged the generational gap between her and her mother, after all. As for what’s next for Boutique Joycé, Gallagher said she is hoping to amp up the shop’s online presence. Once she and Brian retire from the education world, they would like to open a second boutique in Florida, where they have a second home. What would Joyce think of the boutique that bears her name? “She’d be elated,” Gallagher said. “Every time I’m here, I know my mother’s here with me.” SWM

Boutique Joycé is located at 119 W. Seneca St. in the Tops Plaza in the village of Manlius. For more information, visit boutiquejoyce.com or facebook.com/ BoutiqueJoyceManlius or call 315-692-2122. Follow @boutique_joyce_manlius on Instagram.

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INSPIRE

McKENZIE HOUSEMAN

JU LY 2022

FOOD, FASH ION & ENTERTAI N M ENT EDITION


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20|East founder's story of finding life in death Kate Hanzalik

T

he beauty of death is that it can motivate us to bring things to life. This seems to be the truth that led McKenzie Houseman to create 20|East, an award-winning shop that sells locally sourced food, flowers and gifts in Cazenovia. It also seems to be the truth that inspired others to support her along her journey. In 2009, her brother, Tim Hughes, started the woodworking shop, Cazenovia Cut Block. Houseman loved working with him, managing the business, helping with sales of cutting blocks and kitchenware at the Cazenovia Farmers Market on the weekends. But like all good entrepreneurs, she noticed a problem that needed to be solved. “Farmers had to drag their stuff every Saturday; [it was] so much work. And then in the winter there aren’t as many opportunities . . . It’s so easy to go on a computer, click, and it arrives at your door. But these people put their heart and soul into their business.” So she thought, “Why not create a space where they can sell all year long?” Why not? That was a good question, and she had a few good answers. She was trained to be a special education teacher, even though her passion for the profession had faded; she had kids and wanted to stay at home to raise them. The timing just wasn’t right. But in 2015, Houseman’s life took a turn. She was diagnosed with breast cancer, then just one month later, her brother died at the age of 39. By 2017, she simply couldn’t wait any longer to bring her business to life. “My husband said, ‘You have to do it.’ He was super supportive. My whole family was supportive,” says Houseman, who comes from a family of small business owners, starting with her grandfather opening the popular Braeloch Restaurant in 1946. “So I just did it. There was never a doubt.” She opened 20|East on Cazenovia’s main road, Albany Street, and incorporated Cazenovia Cut Block into the shop as a way to honor her brother and ensure his young children would have his business for their future. “He was so passionate about it, and the community was passionate in supporting us,” she says, noting how much this motivates her. “I never want to lose that feeling.” That feeling is palpable when walking into 20|East. The shop has become an eclectic go-to place where people can get both essentials and novelties that are perfect for special occasions, or any occasion. A few good things to eat: in-season produce, a variety of artisanal cheeses and chocolates, Pastabilities stretch bread, Center Street Market pies. A few good gifts to give: Dale Bowers’ artfully crafted stones engraved with inspiring messages, which are as unique and special as the collection of handmade jewelry whose proceeds go to charity. The store is more than just a place where products are sold. Houseman says, “I don’t feel like I’m in retail. I feel like I’m a collector of stories because every single thing in that store I know who made it, where it’s from, maybe sometimes why they made it.” 20|East quickly became a fixture in the community. Then COVID hit. “I changed my business model to help the community at the time. We didn’t shut down one day because we had food from farms.”

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They also sold hand sanitizer and toiletries, and they even did deliveries. “I think [20|East] helped put people at ease. So I learned you’re not just a business; you’re part of a community. It’s a big responsibility and I take it very seriously.” As her leadership role in the community grew, she was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time. Nevertheless, she persisted. She got a mastectomy, and with the help of her team at 20|East, the business continued to thrive. Her ability to innovate during a personal and public crisis is why she received the 2022 Madison County Small Business of the Year award from the Small Business Development Association at Onondaga Community College. Today the cancer is gone, and she’s nearly done with her treatment. Meanwhile at 20|East, Warrior Mugs tell her story. Made by MaryAnn Hughes, these ceramic mugs are intended to honor women with breast cancer, including Houseman. According to Hughes, “Each time I make a warrior mug, I think about these strong women and I pray over each mug, for hope, strength and peace . . . for the one who will receive it and for their difficult and beautiful journey.” Houseman’s struggles have brought out the best in those around her. “They all come into the store to check out how I’m doing. They send cards, drop off food. Things that make them think of me, they drop off at my house. I find stuff on the porch all the time. It’s so sweet,” she said. “I’m not just a business. I’m a person, and they know it.” She also praises the people who work at 20|East because she knows she can rely on them when she doesn’t have the energy to work. What’s especially inspiring is Houseman’s optimism. “I think the biggest part is attitude. There’s been a lot of obstacles, and things that have gone wrong. But so much has also gone right, so I try to focus on the things that are going right.” For women looking to start their own business, she says, “Don’t just pick something out of a hat. You have to love it. Pick something [you] feel passionate about, that [you] connect to somehow, and be ready to work 24/7. . . Surround yourself with good people, if there is anyone to take the burden from you.” For Houseman, her mother helps with accounting and her sons pick up products from vendors. As for the future of 20|East, her main focus is to keep doing what she's doing. Other than that, she's exploring options for deliveries and ways to have more of an online presence. She’s also collaborating with other small business owners to become the “pulse of Caz” through Eat Shop Play Caz, a social media site where people can learn about happenings in the area. But she prefers to live in the moment rather than think too far into the future. “Right now I live day to day, just going through treatment . . . I’m not as hands on as I’d like to be and that’s so frustrating. I can't wait until I'm healthy enough to be [at the shop] full time and do all the things that I want to do. So I guess it’s that simple. I just want to be healthy.” SWM To learn more about 20|EAST and Cazenovia Cut Block, visit 20-east.com. You can also follow 20|East on Instagram (20.east) and Facebook (20/east).

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UPCOMING EVENTS Fridays throughout the summer

Food Truck + Music Fridays

What: Stop by the Everson Community Plaza each Friday during the summer to enjoy food truck fare, live music, and art. In partnership with the Syracuse Food Truck Association. Where: Everson Community Plaza 401 Harrison Street, Syracuse, NY 13202 When: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., live music from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

Monday, July 4

‘Teal There’s a Cure’ 5K

What: The 14th annual Maureen T. O’Hara “Teal There’s a Cure” 5K run/walk benefits theOvarian Cancer Research Alliance, Upstate Cancer Center and GRACE'S (Gynecologic cancer survivors Reinforcing Awareness, Caring, Education and Support), a local support organization for women with ovarian and other gynecologic cancers. For the in-person event, registration is $30 until June 20 and $35 until noon on July 3. Registration on the day of the in-person event is $40 (cash or check only). For the virtual event, registration is $30 until June 20 and $35 until the end of July. Raffle tickets also can be purchased online. Virtual participants can post their time and photos on the virtual event leaderboard. Participants can honor their loved ones by adding a name on the back of their t-shirts with a $100 donation. Printed registration forms are available throughout the village of Marcellus, including the town hall. Where: Marcellus Park, 2443 Platt Road, Marcellus, NY 13108 When: Race starts at 8 a.m.; awards ceremony at 9 a.m. Info: Visit runsignup.com/Race/NY/Marcellus/TealTheresACure5K to register or email tealtheresacure@gmail.com

Sunday, July 10

Gage Center’s Birthday & Anniversary Celebration

What: Celebrate the Gage Center’s 20th anniversary and founder/ co-executive director Dr. Sally Roesch Wagner’s 80th birthday. Attendance is limited to 50 people and registration is required. To RSVP, email: matildajgagefoundation@gmail.com or call 315-436-5800. Where: Matilda Gage Center for Social Justice Dialogue, 210 East Genesee St. Fayetteville, NY 13066 When: 1 to 5 p.m.

Wednesday, July 13

Syracuse Community Choir Concert in the Park

What: The Syracuse Community Choir will host its Concert in the Park, entitled The Right to Live in Peace - El Derecho de Vivir en Paz+. Participants are invited to come at 5 p.m. with a picnic and learn the songs at 6:15 p.m. before the concert begins at 7:15. Following the concert there will be dancing under the stars with Mark Hoffmann Swing This! The concert will be interpreted for the Deaf by Maggie Russell. Where: Thornden Park, near the pool Thornden Park Dr., Syracuse, NY 13210 When: Concert begins at 7:15 p.m. Info: info@syracusecommunitychoir.org Cost: $0 to $25 sliding scale

Saturday, July 16

Pink on Purpose Breast Cancer Walk, Run & Ride

What: The annual Pink on Purpose Breast Cancer Walk, Run & Ride is a fun run hosted by Shades of Inspiration to raise money for the organization’s community services and help fund the Annette Briggs Scholarship, which is presented to a high school student entering college in honor of the organization’s founding member. Where: Onondaga Creek Walk (corner of Midland & Bellevue Avenue) When: Registration at 9 a.m., walk/run begins at 10 a.m. Info: contactus@shadesofinspiration.org or on facebook at shadesofinspirationinc

Wednesday, July 20 to Saturday, July 30

Agatha Christie's "Murder on the Orient Express"

What: A story of romance, tragedy, and primal murder. What better way to spend a pleasant evening? One of America’s premiere playwrights, Ken (Fox on the Fairway, Lend Me a Tenor) Ludwig has created a brilliant stage adaptation of Christie’s most popular mystery. On a winter’s evening in 1934, a snowdrift stops the luxurious Orient Express, literally in its tracks. By morning, it is one passenger less; an American tycoon lies dead in his compartment, stabbed, his door locked from the inside. With a longlist of suspects, detective Hercule Poirot must identify the murderer before they strike again! When: Performances are Wednesday through Sunday Where: Cortland Repertory Theatre, 6799 Little York Lake Road, Preble, NY 13141 Info: www.cortlandrep.org

Thursday July 21 to Saturday, July 23

Curbstone Festival & Sidewalk Sales

What: Shop sales of clothing, shoes, jewelry, toys, home accessories and more, along with displays by area nonprofits. Children will be entertained by strolling magicians/balloon artists throughout the weekend. Where: Genesee, Jordan and Fennell Streets, Skaneateles, NY When: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday & Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday Info: Contact the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce at 315-685-0552 or visit skaneateles.com or facebook.com/skaneateleschamber

Friday, July 29 to Sunday, July 31

44th Annual Antique and Classic Boat Show

What: More than 80 antique and classic boats and motors will be on display in the water and on land, plus concerts, a boat parade, a photo-shoot cruise aboard the Judge Ben Wiles, children’s activities, demos, raffles and more. Awards presented in 35 categories, including the highly coveted People's Choice Award. Organized by the Finger Lakes Chapter of the Antique and Classic Boat Society and the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation with presenting sponsor M&T Bank. Admission is free. Where: Clift Park, 15 W Genesee St, Skaneateles, NY 13152 When: 3 p.m. to dusk Friday, July 29; 9 a.m. to dusk Saturday, July 30; 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, July 31 Info: Contact the Skaneateles Area Chamber of Commerce at 315-685-0552 or visit skaneateles.com or facebook.com/skaneateleschamber

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JU LY 2022

FOOD, FASH ION & ENTERTAI N M ENT EDITION


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MOVERS & SHAKERS

Will serve patients on Syracuse’s west side

St. Joseph’s Health welcomes Rebekah Kaufman, MD, a board-certified physician specializing in family medicine, to St. Joseph’s Physicians. In her role as primary care physician, Dr. Kaufman joins a team of diverse and experienced health care professionals who provide high quality care to the underserved community on Syracuse’s westside. In addition to family medicine, Dr. Kaufman provides obstetrical and gynecological care to patients. “I enjoy seeing a variety of patients – from newborn to end of life care— and practice a holistic approach to addressing the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual concerns of my patients,” said Kaufman. “I hope to work as a partner to my patients, to give them an opportunity to heal, grow, and gain confidence managing chronic conditions.” Kaufman earned her medical degree from SUNY Upstate Medical University and her bachelor’s degree from SUNY Geneseo. In 2021, Dr. Kaufman completed her family medicine residency at St. Joseph’s Health. She is certified by the American Board of Family Medicine. Dr. Kaufman is seeing patients at St. Joseph’s Health Primary Care Center – West at 321 Gifford St., Syracuse, N.Y. 13204. To schedule an appointment, please call (315) 703 2600.

Boys & Girls Clubs adds four women to its executive team including first female executive director

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Syracuse has made big organizational changes. They’ve added four women to its executive team. At the helm, Jenni Gratien was named its new executive director. Gratien’s appointment makes her the first woman to have this position at the organization. She brings with her a wealth of experience and excitement. She joins BGCS from Chadwick Residence where she worked for almost 12 years and served as the executive director for the last six. Her passion and commitment to improve the lives of individuals who belong to underserved communities is captured in her favorite quote by Ghandi “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Gratien has hit the ground running and has already begun to make an impact in her new role. Her focus is to always keep the organization’s mission at the forefront of everything BGCS does. “I am delighted to lead the Boys & Girls Clubs of Syracuse as the first ever woman Executive Director in the club’s history,” says Gratien. “I am honored and excited to work for an inclusive organization that makes our community’s children a priority. As a leader, it is important that our team feels valued; as such, I will prioritize personal development, authenticity, and our collective strive for unity to ensure that Great Futures Start Here.” Adrienne Kelley is BGCS’ new director of fund development. She brings with her over 11 years of experience from her previous role as assistant director of development at Francis House. Kelley has over 20 years of fund development experience in the nonprofit world. She has come on board with the goal of extending BGCS’s reach, building on established relationships and forging new partnerships that will help to support and exceed the needs of the young people BGCS serves. "I feel honored to be a part of an organization that provides a safe environment for our youth,” says Kelley “It’s a place where they learn life and leadership skills-a place where they can build relationships that will help to shape successful futures." Stacey Nichols has joined the executive team as the director of marketing. She has over 15 years of Marketing experience that forges across industries.

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Locally she has worked with the Rescue Mission and WCNY among other organizations. She is ready to hit the ground running, making both the needs and the news of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Syracuse more visible. Her goal is to highlight the story of the youth and, to invite the community at large in for an up-close view of how the Boys & Girls Clubs of Syracuse has and will continue to shape the futures of its youth. “I am from a community much like those of the youth we serve,” she says. “When I look at them, I know that if given the right support and tools, we are looking at future artists, doctors, entrepreneurs, lawyers, politicians and teachers. We are looking at kids who can be whoever and whatever they aspire to be. I am honored to play my role to support BGCS’s mission to get them there.” Kenyata Calloway has also been added to the executive team after being promoted from unit director of the Fayette Street club to programming director, overseeing all three clubs. Calloway returned to Boys and Girls Clubs of Syracuse in November 2021 after nine years. Before leaving the organization, she worked at BGCS for eight years in several different positions. As Women’s History Month ends, Calloway sums up the enthusiasm of her new role and the additions to the executive team perfectly. “Behind every strong woman is a tribe of other strong women who have her back.” About the Boys & Girls Clubs of Syracuse: The Boys & Girls Clubs of Syracuse has been a leader in youth development in our community for over 125 years. The Boys & Girls Clubs provide a fun, safe and positive environment fostering academic success, good character and citizenship that directly impacts our local community. Learn more at BGCSyracuse.org. Connect with us at Facebook.com/BGCSyracuse & @bgc_syracuse on Instagram.

Local accountant named chair of PRC

Linda Gabor, CPA, CFE has been appointed as the chair of the Peer Review Committee (PRC) of the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA). PRC oversees the administration of the AICPA and PICPA Peer Review programs in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The PRC is responsible for ensuring that peer reviews are performed and accepted in accordance with the AICPA peer review standards. Gabor is the partner-in-charge of the audit services group at Grossman St. Amour CPAs PLLC and has over 28 years of experience in public accounting. She also leads the firm’s Employee Benefit Plan Audit Practice. Linda’s areas of expertise include audit and attest engagements, financial statement reparation, internal control review, and fraud examination and deterrence. Her audit industry areas include affordable housing, employee benefit plans, manufacturing, healthcare, higher education, not-for-profit, public school districts, and retail distribution organizations. She is a member of the Employee Benefit Plan and Government Audit Quality Centers of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, and also sits on the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants Peer Review Committee. She is an advisory board member of Maureen’s Hope Foundation. She lives in Clay with her husband and two children.

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