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Proudly Recognizing Sullivan County Pride for Twentythree Years

awards A Special Section of the Sullivan County Democrat

Congratulations to Our Friends Businessperson of the Year:

GREG J. GOLDSTEIN Distinguished Achievement Award:

ALEXIS L. EGGLETON Pride of Fallsburg:

IRA & NATHAN STEINGART & CINDY PERLMUTTER And a special congratulations to all the winners


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Business person of the Year

Greg Goldstein The Misner Agency Story and photo by Eli Ruiz


oodbourne resident Norman Misner founded the Misner Agency, in his hometown in 1928, and under the current leadership of Roscoe native Greg Goldstein, it has experienced tremendous growth. In 1975 Goldstein joined his future fatherin-law Ralph Holmes as one of only two employees at the agency; Greg would eventually marry Ralph’s daughter Linda. Holmes had bought the business from Misner in the ’50s and kept the name. With Holmes’ passing in 1982, Goldstein took over the day to day operations at Misner, and in 1984 he bought the remaining interest in the company from his mother-inlaw. “I can’t believe it’s been 30 years already,” exclaims Goldstein in a recent interview with the Democrat. Today, Misner employs 20 with three additional locations in Livingston Manor, Bloomingburg and Westown (Orange County). Goldstein’s even gotten his two sons, Eric and Todd, into the insurance business act. Goldstein, as always, focuses on his customers, affirming, “Our clients are why I’m still in this business. We have so many wonderful, longstanding clients that go way back with us. It’s just been great to serve the people and families of the area and helping them get through tough times.” And regarding the importance of the Misner Agency to the area, Goldstein says, “We pay good salaries, we provide 401K, health insurance and more to our employees. We’re also active in the community.” Goldstein, a former Neversink supervisor and Fallsburg School Board President, and current Lions Club member, is very active with the Boys and Girls Club and for the last four years has emceed the organization’s annual Celebrity Dinner; an event that just last month raised more than $60,000 for the Club’s many local initiatives. Goldstein also gives generously to arguably the county’s largest charitable event: The an2014

Greg Goldstein has seen the Misner Agency grow to four offices since he joined in 1975. nual WSUL/WVOS Heart-A-Thon. “I just find it absolutely incredible how the people of this county give so much of themselves,” he said. “We are a very poor county but somehow people constantly reach in their pockets and give to the great many causes here. I was raised in Roscoe and I was taught early on to give back to your community and that’s what we do here.” Though it certainly has its share of issues Goldstein is bullish on the future of Sullivan County: “I think right now, with the possibility of the casinos, the future looks good. [Casinos] certainly not the end all be all for the area but… I just think there are a lot of positives to be excited about. I do believe that much better days are ahead.…” “Greg provides jobs and stellar service, but he strives to be an exemplary role model to the business community,” praised Chamber of Commerce President Cathy Paty. “His volunteerism is commendable and his dedication is an incredible attribute to our county.” As for the Chamber Pride award, Goldstein is humbled: “It’s an amazing honor, to be sure. The ladies here at the office do a heck of a lot for the community throughout the year and it’s nice to be recognized. It’s amazing to be recognized in your own community and we’re all very proud [of the honor].” P R I D E AWA R D S 5

SING LOUD, SING PROUD! Congratulations to all the Pride Awards recipients.


You represent all that’s good and right in our community.

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Every organization needs a great leader. Alexis Eggleton is ours. She manages a staff of 67 in 16 clubs in nine locations. More importantly, she guides 3,000 futures. 7RGD\¡VUHFRJQLWLRQLVDWUXHUHà HFWLRQRI\RXUSRLVHJULWDQGGHGLFDWLRQ to our mission to help youngsters forge themselves great futures. With fondness and appreciation, The Board of Directors & Staff OF TOWN OF WALLKILL INC.


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Distinguished Achievement

Alexis Eggleton Boys & Girls Club By Guy Charles Harriton


enzel Washington may get the attention because of his celebrity as the national spokesman for the Boys & Girls Club. However, it’s the tireless leadership of people like Alexis Eggleton which gives teens an opportunity to discover what makes them “great.” Eggleton, the Chamber Pride’s Distinguished Achievement Award recipient, is the executive director of the Wallkill chapter, which serves a number of schools in the region, including five in Sullivan County. She embodies the very essence of the club’s motto, “Great futures start here” with infectious enthusiasm and unparalleled dedication. The 2000 graduate of Roscoe CS earned a BA at Ohio State University and went on to spend six-and-a-half years as Legislative Aide/Communications Director for the Sullivan County Legislature. In that position she wrote speeches, conducted policy analysis and research and had a big hand in organizing the county’s Bicentennial in 2009. She raised $75,000 in private and corporate donations to support the many bicentennial activities. This fundraising talent would come in handy at the Boys & Girls Club, where she has helped expand the scope and geographic reach of the programs since taking over in January 2010. Eggleton is a graduate of the Club’s Executive Advanced Leadership Program and belongs or has participated in long list of community groups and organizations. Eggleton noted, “The Boys & Girls Club gives members an opportunity to discover what makes them great, whether its the arts, or music, or the myriad educational opportunities which leads to great professionals.” With so many mothers and fathers working or kids coming from single-parent households, Eggleton emphasized, “every child is at risk… whether it be middle class or upper middle class. Kids with no supervision have been known to make wrong choices, but 2014

Contributed Photo

Alexis Eggleton has made a huge difference in the lives of thousands of children served by the Boys & Girls Clubs. having them in the Boys & Girls Club environment and with strong role models they have a great time and learn something,” Eggleton added. Eggleton called former Boys & Girls Club member Denzel Washington “an inspiration.… He’s been a national spokesman for more than 20 years. He’s from New Jersey and does a wonderful job as national spokesman. He really embodies what the organization is all about in the many commercials he has done, which are directed by Ron Howard. “Let’s not forget Taco Bell. They just made a $30 million dollar contribution,” she added. “This represents the largest financial commitment to the Boys & Girls Club of America in its 108-year history. It’s a groundbreaking five-year partnership to support teens on their path to graduate high school and ready themselves for a successful future.” According to Eggleton, anyone can “parlay poor decisions into the right ones and have an incredible careers. “They all don’t become famous actors, like Washington, but they make up the very fabric of our society as doctors, teachers and civil servants,” she elaborated. “Our kids are required to do a community service once a month, so they don’t choose destructive paths like gangs.” she said. And this month it involved the simple endeavor of planting flowers and lifting spirits. She closes with an apropos statement, “It’s really a great experience for the kids.” P R I D E AWA R D S 7

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Congratulations Elaine 17089

Congratulations to All the Pride Award Winners & Honorees

From Henry & Elizabeth Kubenik

The Board of the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance is proud of and congratulates our Executive Director

Elaine Giguere For nearly 40 years Elaine has supported the arts in Sullivan County and the Upper Delaware Region. Her drive and initiative has helped nurture and grow a vibrant arts scene, many arts organizations, and countless individual artists.


Distinguished Service Award Honoree



Distinguished Service

Elaine Giguere Delaware Valley Arts Alliance By Guy Charles Harriton


n this day and age, it’s difficult to keep any business or non-profit afloat – especially those based in the arts. Then there’s the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, which breaks the mold and has been around since the nation’s Bicentennial. Executive Director Elaine Giguere said the secret to DVAA’s success is a lot of hard work and surrounding herself with people who embrace the arts and her vision. “It truly is a ‘homegrown’ endeavor that began as a grassroots operation,” said Giguere, this year’s Distinguished Service Winner. “It has evolved into an organization that has had exhibits featuring hundreds of artists and has a film festival each year that is legendary.” And like a true entrepreneur, Giguere doesn’t want to single out any artist, but considers all the artists that show in her two-gallery building brilliant. Both the Loft and Alliance Galleries occupy the DVAA headquarters on Main Street in Narrowsburg. Let’s begin at the beginning. “We started with a handful of people who were on the Bicentennial Committee for the town [of Tusten] and wanted to see more cultural activities,” Giguere said. “We went from that to owning a building and we renovated the theater, which was originally a commercial movie house. We have a film festival every year that is highly attended.” The Riverfest is an annual endeavor, that Giguere is quite proud of and marvels at its popularity in the tri-state area and beyond. Music, art and the environment are the theme. It embodies the spirit of the river valley and highlights area artists work. The Big Eddy Film Festival is another highly popular program sponsored by the DVAA. It aims to advance the traditional art of storytelling by showcasing the newest and best independent films from around the world. Giguere is especially proud of the musicians who make DVAA-sponsored concerts at 2014

Contributed Photo

Longtime Delaware Valley Arts Alliance Executive Director Elaine Giguere embodies its mission to “advance the arts in the region through support and encouragement of artistic, innovative programs, advocacy and artistic business and government alliances.” the Tusten Theatre a must stop for music lovers. And the talent is enormous. Take, for instance, Aztec Two Step, a group that is highly touted and has a huge following, and who will play May 3. Giguere says that concertgoers will be astounded by their renditions of the Everly Brothers and Simon and Garfunkel classics. Her selection for the Pride Award is wonderful, she says, but again her modesty comes into play and she thanks the community for its support of arts and culture. All of it, she notes, would not be possible without the grants the Alliance receives from New York State and the community and other sources. Giguere’s five-year plan includes a broader spectrum for the Alliance. She envisions “the entire county and each town having vigorous arts programs.” P R I D E AWA R D S 9


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Young Emerging Leader

Brad Rutledge The Keats Agency Story and photo by Eli Ruiz


t is only fitting that Brad Rutledge was chosen by the Sullivan County Chamber of Commerce Pride Committee as recipient of its Young Emerging Leader award. After all, he is co-chair of the Young Emerging Leaders (YEL, a Chamber of Commerce task force) and sits on the Chamber’s Board of Directors and the SullivanArc Foundation. “I am incredibly honored and completely humbled,” Rutledge said of his honor. “I’ve been working hard to do the right thing for my clients… and giving back to the community. To be recognized is fantastic.” Originally from Cincinnati, Rutledge met Jackie Weyer, who grew up in Monticello. The couple married in 2001 and, as Rutledge related, “after several visits to Sullivan County, I found that I loved this area and thought it the perfect place to raise our children. We decided to call Cochecton home and have been here since 2005.” Jackie manages her mom’s, Dr. Maureen Whipple’s, two dental offices in Callicoon and Monticello. The couple has two children, Annabelle, 10, and Matthew, 7, who attend the Sullivan West district. Brad said he loves the beauty of the area, and enjoys the spectacular views from his home on County Route 114. “It’s a great community, with a really good youth program,” Rutledge said. While attending the University of Cincinnati, Brad would discover his true calling, deciding to pursue a career in sales. “I started out selling new Toyotas, which lasted about four months,” Rutledge said. “I sold a new 4 Runner to a gentleman who managed a mortgage company, and he recruited me to come on board as a loan officer. I spent many years in mortgages before deciding that I wanted to learn more about the insurance field. I obtained my insurance licenses and went to work for Allstate Insurance.” Later, after making the move to Sullivan County, he joined the Keats Agency in Mon2014

Brad Rutledge, a transplant to Sullivan County, has been an asset to his community. ticello as a Nationwide Insurance agent. Rutledge, in a quest to increase his knowledge and better serve his clients, said, “I am currently looking to take the classes and exams to become a Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC).” As a man who takes pride in working for Keats, which has been in business for 20 years, Brad said, “I truly enjoy creating ‘aha’ moments for my clients. In other words, those times where I find a need for coverage that a client didn’t know they had, and I am able to provide a competitive insurance solution to address it.” In his spare time Rutledge is a singer and rhythm guitarist for the local band Far Beyond Gone. And he has high hopes for his community. “I’m really looking forward to the future of Sullivan County and try to always look for the positives of the area,” affirms Brad. “I’ve set my family’s roots here and think that the sky is the limit for a revitalization here. I’m looking forward to the growth that the proposed casino resort destinations will bring to this area. This will provide opportunities for my insurance business, my band, and for all residents of the county. It’ll be the catalyst to great things.” P R I D E AWA R D S 1 1


Mike & Sandi Cassaro Keller Signs Story and photo by Fred Stabbert


hen he was just a 17-year-old dock worker in Staten Island, a signpainter who was supposed to paint a registration number on a barge didn’t show up on time. The barge couldn’t leave the dock without its numbers. Mike asked his boss if it was all right if he got some paint and a brush and did the job himself. When the signpainter finally showed up – hours late – he asked who had painted the ship. Mike, a little embarrassed he might get in trouble for doing someone else’s work, admitted to it. The signpainter was so impressed with Mike’s work he actually offered him a job. The rest, as they say, is history. Seven years later, after his apprenticeship, Mike became a Master Sign Painter and was “allowed to put my brush on someone’s truck.” That was 1967. Twenty years later Mike sold his business and moved to Sullivan County, hoping to open his own shop. But Rose Keller, who owned Keller Signs, offered him a job first. Four years later, Mike owned Outdoor



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Mike and Sandi work on a sign at the Keller Sign’s main office at 1022 Route 17B in Mongaup Valley. Media Corp., Keller Signs’ parent company. “We handle everything, big and small,” Mike said. “From billboards to stickies. Everything we do is custom.” Daughter Sandi returned to the company after earning her Master’s in Printmaking from SUNY New Paltz with a BA in Art Education. “It’s great. I get to work with my dad every day and he gets to see his tuition dollars at work,” she says with a big smile. Mom Vicki is the bookkeeper when she’s not working at Monticello Middle School as a Special Education aide. Keller Signs’ business office is actually in Mike and Vicki’s house and sometimes Vicki is a little sensitive at being left at home. Mom says, “Sure, you get to go to work and goof off and I get to stay home and do all the work.” “We make it look easy, because we love it,” Sandi says. “Throw it at us, we love challenges. “My favorite words are, ‘I don’t know if you can do this.’” Once the dynamic duo finishes a face [the code name for a billboard] Mike calls his son, Mike III, to help him hang it. “Michael helps us out part-time,” Mike said. “We have 80 faces and take care of many others, too.” And if by chance you read a sign at Bethel Woods, the Monticello Motor Club or Villa Roma, you might be seeing Kellers Sign’s handiwork. “Sandi brought me into the 21st Century,” Mike said, his brushes and paint now a thing of the past. “With the new technology you can do so much – banners, paper or vinyl.” This year’s Town of Bethel Pride Winner certainly has pride in their town and its people. 2014


Scott & Juliete Gaebel Youngsville Garage Story and photo by Sharon Space-Bamberger

n 1995, Scott and Juliete Gaebel became the owners of Youngsville Garage, which has been in the Gaebel family for nine decades. The business is located at 4014 State Rt. 52 in Youngsville and offers complete automobile services including maintenance, repairs and towing. The couple bought the garage from Scott’s father, Rodney. The business was established in 1925 by Scott’s great-grandfather, Paul. (Though grandfather Milton also worked in the family business, he’s better known for starting the bus company which bore his name and carried generations of students). “I went to college for a while, but I learned auto mechanics hands-on from my father and my great-grandfather,” Scott related. “I was taught a lot by my great-grandfather, who was a man with an eighth grade education.” Juliete Gaebel added, “At one time Youngsville garage sold used vehicles. The 2006 flood, (which sent flood waters cascading down Shandelee Road and straight through the business, picking up cars as it went) was the end of that.” Scott and Juliete are Sullivan County natives. Juliete was born in Grahamsville and Scott in Youngsville. Juliete graduated from Tri-Valley CS and Scott from Jeffersonville


Juliete and Scott Gaebel pause for a photo during a busy workday. She is the business’ full-time bookkeeper and office manager. Youngsville CS. Youngsville Garage has four employees in addition to Scott and Juliete, who is the bookkeeper. She revealed, “I do it all when Scott goes to Canada to hunt whitetails. Our daughter Abby is interested in shooting and wants to go with him when she is old enough.” Scott is a Town of Callicoon Councilman, now into his second term. He became interested in politics because “of my father. He was once Callicoon Supervisor and later a Sullivan County Legislator. We want to help our community.” Rodney is currently Republican Elections Commissioner. The couple has three daughters, Katerina, age 20, who is majoring in Accounting at the University of Albany; Emily, age 13, a seventh grade student at Sullivan West; and Abigail, age 11, a fifth grade student at Sullivan West. Scott is proud of the four-generation family business and said, “Almost ninety years of history was made possible by our loyal customers to whom I am very grateful. Without good customers a business can’t exist,” he said.

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Lloyd & Roger Brucher Fosterdale Equipment Story and photo by Dan Hust


Brothers Lloyd (left) and Roger Brucher run Fosterdale Equipment, a New Holland dealer (among other brands) and a popular stop along Route 17B in the Town of Cochecton. just as varied, stretching from the northern Catskills to the southern Poconos, and from Interstate 81 in the west to the other side of the Hudson Valley in the east. All are signs of Fosterdale Equipment’s staying power – and ability to evolve – amidst a constantly-shifting economy. That’s good news for its future. “We’re very slowly and calmly coming back,” Lloyd affirms.



loyd Brucher gestures to Fosterdale Equipment’s candy jar, sitting prominently on the front desk, right where people come to pay. He uses it to gauge how well his and brother Roger’s farm equipment business is faring. “It’s the number of times a week you have to fill it,” he notes, explaining that the more often he replaces the free candy (and it’s the good stuff, from Tootsie Rolls to Jolly Ranchers), the better business is. The brothers Brucher have spent the past four decades watching the industries they serve ebb and flow. They’re grateful that, right now, the tide is in their favor. “Our orchard customers have had two good seasons in a row,” says Lloyd. “And the dairy industry is experiencing a high.” Up until recently, non-agricultural customers were outstripping ag-based clients at Fosterdale Equipment, located in a highly visible spot at Fosterdale’s four corners (where 17B and 52 meet) in the Town of Cochecton. But ag customers have made a resurgence, and today the split is about 50/50. At the height of this year’s busy summer season, Lloyd expects to have nine employees – a mix of part-time seasonal workers and established employees like Joseph Kaiser, who’s been their service manager for more than 20 years. The depth of service is matched by the breadth of offerings. The shop is filled with practical items like tractor tires and truck hitches, but it also features toys and tools, even portable mini-fridges, catering not just to farmers but hunters, truckers, and do-ityourselfers. Outside sits a variety of farm and lawn equipment, dominated by New Holland, though brands include Dixie Chopper, Bush Hog and McHale, among many others. Fosterdale Equipment’s customer base is

P R I D E AWA R D S 1 5


Matthew Lanes & Dominique Jenkins Matthew’s on Main

Story by Fred Stabbert III Photography by Nyssa Calkin


hen Matthew Lanes and Dominique Jenkins moved to Callicoon 11 years ago, little did they know they would fall in love – with the town and its people. “We didn’t realize what it means to open a business in a small town,” Matthew said. “It’s much more than we expected, in a good way. “It is really nice to be part of the community and be accepted into the community,” Dominique said. Their restaurant, named Matthew’s on Main, is a blend of their two spirits, with Matthew’s flair in the kitchen and Do-




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“I’ve never worked harder… And I also have never been happier,” Mattew Lanes said about owning a business. minique’s engaging personality. Housed in Callicoon’s oldest building, which dates back to 1865, Matthew’s on Main offers nouveau American cuisine in a comfortable atmosphere. “Our goal is to have something for everyone, in their price range,” Dominique said. “From chicken wings to quail. “Matthew likes to make his cuisine interesting and we serve hearty, large portions,” she said. “We like to make our guests comfortable from the minute they walk in the door to the time they leave… satisfied.” Matthew has embraced the lovacore movement – purchasing many of his cheeses, salads and other vegetables at the weekly Callicoon Farmer’s Market outside his back door. Patrons can find local quail, rabbit and other locally grown meats added to the menu on a regular basis. And besides offering meals in the downstairs restaurant, Matthew’s has a dining room upstairs for private parties and also does off-premise catering. A melting pot for second homeowners, visitors, full-time residents and sportsmen looking for a good meal, Dominique said, “Everyone is important to us.” Looking forward to this summer, Matthew and Dominique can’t wait for Sunday, June 8, the Annual Callicoon Tractor Parade. “The Callicoon Tractor Parade is like Mardi Gras,” Matthew said. “It’s our busiest day of the year.” And from there Callicoon will swing into the Street Fair, weekly Farmers’ Markets and a variety of events which attract interest in the riverside hamlet. 2014


Ira & Nathan Steingart • Cindy Permutter Steingart Printing Story and photo by Dan Hust



From the left, siblings Nathan Steingart, Ira Steingart and Cindy Perlmutter have kept their great-grandfather Max Schwartz’s printing business in the family. The enormous six-color Heidelberg printing press behind them is the heart of their production department, producing business cards, annual reports, booklets and posters. After all, while Steingart Printing’s famous Borscht Belt resort postcards may be fond memories (and valued souvenirs), people still need fliers, signs, business marketing tools and niche publications – and they don’t necessarily want to do it themselves or deal with an impersonal company far away. “We are working hard, and we keep up with technology,” affirms Ira. “We’re bestknown for our customer service and quality.”

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or nearly 100 years, Max Schwartz’s heirs have run the printing business he started in 1915. Still located on Main Street (Route 42) in the heart of South Fallsburg, originally it was called, appropriately enough, the Max Schwartz Company. Today it’s Steingart Associates, better known by its dba of Steingart Printing. And three of Max’s great-grandchildren continue to run it. Brothers Ira and Nathan Steingart grew up in the business, graduating from sweeping floors as kids to overseeing sales & production (Nathan’s specialty) and developing new clients (Ira’s focus). Sister Cindy got married and moved away, but eventually she and her husband Bruce Perlmutter returned, and Cindy took a job at the family business as a typesetter. She still can be found setting type, albeit in front of a computer screen, overseeing the entire pre-press process. The trio are also dedicated community members: Cindy active with the Fallsburg Lions, Nathan on the Fallsburg Town Board, and Ira a Sullivan County legislator. As Ira notes, what helps the community helps Steingart Associates, which employs seven locals beyond him and his siblings. “I’m trying to make a difference in economic development so businesses can survive,” he explains. The printing business in particular has undergone a series of transformations, from the early days of setting type by hand to color printing presses to today’s computer-driven design. In order to stay competitive in a world that’s switched from paper to electronics, the Steingart siblings are eyeing the purchase of a new digital press. P R I D E AWA R D S 1 7


Lost Lake Resort forestburgh Double Diamond Story and photo by Dan Hust


ost Lake is about to be found – by hundreds, potentially thousands, of people. After years of preparation, the first 400 lots of this 2,507-lot upscale development are being offered for sale. Starting at $70,000, each is around a quarter- to a half-acre, nestled deep in Forestburgh’s woods and surrounding the 54-acre, spring-fed Lost Lake. “I can see where Forestburgh got its name,” says Wallace Layton, regional sales manager for Lost Lake’s developer, the Dallas-based Double Diamond. “I’m in awe every time I drive up here.” Lost Lake will be Double Diamond’s sixth development and the closest to New York City, whose residents are anticipated to be the resort’s majority customer base.

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18 P R I D E AWA R D S

Wallace Layton, left, and Kelvin Gorr have already started marketing Lost Lake properties in Forestburgh to current residents of Double Diamond resort properties around the country. What they’ll soon find across 2,080 acres will include a nine-hole golf course, clubhouse, swimming beach, marina, picnicking and fishing areas, hiking/biking trails, and an Amenity Village offering a restaurant, spa and fitness center designed in a rustic contemporary style by Joseph Rominski Architecture. Future phases will expand the offerings, gradually opening up the rest of the property to development. But the forested setting will remain, as Double Diamond has made a successful business model out of blending their developments with the natural landscape. “Three hundred acres has been set aside for wildlife,” notes Lost Lake’s land sales representative, Kelvin Gorr. “And quite a bit of the property has views.” Many purchasers opt never to build on their lots, instead choosing to simply enjoy the amenities. Those who do build have to adhere to architectural and landscaping guidelines, ensuring the natural setting is largely undisturbed. Lost Lake will become a magnet for muchneeded employment, with 150 positions anticipated at full buildout. “I feel very confident that all seven phases will be here in the next five years,” predicts Layton. Town of Forestburgh residents will also benefit not just from a new tax base but by being able to access the resort’s amenities themselves. “We’re very excited to be part of the community,” Layton affirms, “and we’re very excited and honored to be nominated as the Pride of the Town of Forestburgh.” 2014


Phil Hillriegel Hillco Manufacturing Story and photo by Frank Rizzo


n Fremont Center, in an unassuming building he erected himself, Phil Hillriegel does something that is increasingly rare as our country moves further away from its industrial heyday. He actually builds things. Hillriegel and his crew of nine at Hillco Manufacturing create small, specialized parts – such as carbide rotary files – for big and small industrial clients that include General Electric and Boeing. They are aided by a raft of high end computer-guided machinery (computer numerical control or CNC, in industry parlance) that can cost in the six figures. Growing up nearby on his parents’ – Phil and Nancy’s – dairy farm, Phil early on showed a knack for something that would put him in good stead in the future. “I was good at fixing machinery,” he recalled. When Phil and wife Catherine moved eight miles away, across Kellams Bridge to Wayne County, PA, he took up the family tradition. But Phil discovered, as did hundreds of others in our area, that raising dairy cattle had become a tough going. “I was broke,” he stated flatly. Soon he hooked up with Russell Hall in Hancock, who ran a machine shop, and learned the business. Fourteen years ago, he opened Hillco. So how does an aspiring business get to the point of providing parts to the “big boys”? “You start small, working with subcontractors,” Hillriegel explained. “Once they realize the quality of your product, they’ll come back.” The kind of specializing manufacturing skills he engages in cannot be acquired in any trade school, Hillriegel noted. His crew mainly learned on the job. The machines, he added “run 24/7 and require constant maintenance.” “It’s similar to milking cows,” he laughed. “It’s a seven-day-a-week job. But it pays a bit 2014

Phil Hillriegel next to one of his more expensive machines, a New Unison Corporation Flexible Grinding System. The computer-controlled system can work faster and more accurately than any human. more!” Hillriegel laments the decline in American machine tool manufacturing. “Most of our competition is overseas,” he said. “You either have to build it faster or better.” His remote location isn’t a problem, said Hillriegel, what with major highways within driving distance. “Ninety percent of our stuff goes via UPS,” he noted. Phil, 47, and Catherine have four children: Tom, employed by Osmose, which services electric and telecommunications utilities; Tim, who works with Phil; and Tyler and Taylor, still in school. Phil noted how many people, on entering his shop, have the same reaction: “I can’t believe this is here.” “Most of the stuff we make here you can’t buy [off the shelf], it’s gotta be built,” Hillriegel noted. As for the future: “We’re not going to get any bigger, we’ll just get better at what we do.”

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Lou Monteleone The Corner Story and photo by Any Tikka

ou Monteleone owns the Corner Store in Eldred, the Liquor Store attached to it, and has recently expanded with an outdoor pizzeria across Route 55. The Piazza has a wood burning brick oven, the only one in Sullivan County that he imported specially from Italy. “It’s unique to the area,” he said, “It’s different, so it brings people here to try something different.” “It was unexpected,” he said about winning the Sullivan County Chamber of Commerce Award. When asked why he thought he got the award, he said, “I do quite a bit for the community, maybe that’s why. It’s a Pride Award. I do take pride in what I have, in the town and the area. I think it gets a bad rap sometimes because it’s small, but you can still



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Lou Monteleone has both deep business and charitable roots in the Town of Highland. make a difference. You run a business, you try to please people. It’s bringing people here from out of town, maybe that’s why.” Monteleone said the business is doing well, paying the bills, although it was a hard winter with high power costs. “That’s why local support is important,” he said. “Business is always more in the summer. We get some second homers. I don’t do much advertising, it’s all word of mouth.” Lou stated he doesn’t want to step on other business’s toes. “That’s why we don’t do subs, just hot foods, we try to be different.” Area residents know Monteleone as a tireless campaigner for those less fortunate. Among them is the beloved Santa Express that many now consider the start of Christmas Season in the county. “It gives towns something to center their celebrations on,” Lou said, “and many people even book their holiday visit to coincide with the Santa Express. It brings tourists to the area. I’ve had calls from Connecticut, and Central Jersey.” Lou is also a member of countless charitable organizations, including the Lions Club, he puts on Easter Bunny parties, raises money for St. Baldrick’s, has erected “Giving Trees” at his business and started the Human Line of Hope against cancer that’s spread throughout the country.. He received Sullivan County Care Coalition’s Award in 2013. Previous to opening The Corner, he was part of running operations at the Eldred Preserve for 30 years. Originally from Brooklyn, Monteleone moved to Eldred when he was 10. Lou is married to his wife June, and his brother Frank occasionally helps out in the outdoor Piazza. 2014

Congratulations to all allPG PG the Sullivan Pride Award Winners! Sullivan P ride A ward W inners!

We also welcome Dr. Clifford Teich of Bloomingburg to our family! 36 North Road, Bloomingburg, NY 12721, phone (845) 733-4515


CALL C A ALL (845) 342-4774



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Congratulations To All Sullivan Pride Award Winners!

Joseph N. Garlick Funeral Home Inc. Exclusively Serving the Jewish Community Jewish Owned & Independently Operated

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~Joel & Ken Ross~ Congratulations on your well-deserved achievement!! It is a pleasure to work for people who truly care about their employees and treat them like part of their family. Many of us have been part of the Ross Electric family for a good part of our lives. Kindly accept our congratulations on this wonderful recognition of all your hard work and dedication, not only to the community of Sullivan County, but to your employees as well. You both have made us all very proud!!

845-292-1000 22 P R I D E AWA R D S


~From Your Loyal, Dedicated Employees~



Joel & Kenny Ross Ross Electric By Sharon Space-Bamberger


Contributed Photo

Joel and Kenny Ross are partners in the 70year-old business. field experience. I learned outstanding business abilities from my father, Joel. I enjoy going to work every day.” Kenny and his brothers all graduated from Liberty High School, Kenny in 1978, Steve in 1977 and Eric in 1983. Kenny plans to dedicate the Pride Award to, “My brother Steve, whom I worked with for many years until his tragic death. He is greatly missed by all.”

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oss Electric has been located in the Town of Liberty for almost seventy years and has been continuously owned by three generations of licensed electricians named Ross. As 76-year-old Joel Ross tells it, “My father Harry Ross moved his family here from the Bronx in 1943 or 1944.They came to Liberty because I had asthma and the air was better here. “Harry Ross was an electrician who began Ross Electric out of his garage. From there we moved the business to Oberfest St. behind the electric company,” Joel added. “We had a fire in 2002 and moved to our present location. Anything electrical, we do.” The elder Ross continued, “My father Harry trained me and he trained my sons Kenny, Steve and Ricky. Kenny and I are in business together. Ricky (Eric) is in Boynton Beach, Florida and has his own business, Rick Ross Electric. My son Steve died two years ago when he struck a deer with his motorcycle. I still have nightmares about it.” Joel graduated from Liberty High School in 1955. He has been married to his high school sweetheart, Joan Melnikoff, for 55 years. The couple’s sons and their wives gave them six grandchildren. Kenny’s children are Esti and Alli, Steve’s children are Josh and Nicole, and Rick’s children are Caelian and Aden. When asked his favorite part of the business, Joel didn’t hesitate. “The interaction with my customers,” he said. “It’s always nice to look back at what we’ve completed. I’m proud of what our company produces. My sons are good people and very honest. They followed along the lines I set in business.” Kenny credits Ross Electric’s longevity and success to those they serve. “ Our business is here because of a long list of customers who have remained with us for decades and our employees who are second to none,” Kenny noted. “We have over 250 years of combined experience with all of us here at Ross. I was lucky to be able to start out working on sites with our founder, my grandfather Harry, for

P R I D E AWA R D S 2 3


Richard Codichini River Runner’s Roost Story and photo by Anya Tikka


ichard Codichini, who started River Runner's Roost restaurant in Pond Eddy last summer, says local officials in Lumberland have been instrumental in getting his business off to a good start. “They could not have been more helpful, you just had to call them if you needed something, and they’d try to help,” he reminisced. “They are business-friendly.” The business did not open until almost August, but it was very busy right from the get-go. “Once school started, it slowed down, which is natural for any business,” Richard continued, “but we stayed open until November, Thanksgiving.” “My old customers from the other business would come up, and they’d give me suggestions, like they’d like to see some Italian


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Richard Codichini stands next to the slow smoker that’s in the process of being moved outdoors for the summer. It cooks meat 'by itself' overnight. food, so now we do barbecue, steaks, Italian, and pretty much bar and grill,” Richard added. This year, he’s moving his prized, new slow smoker from the kitchen to the outside where smoke alarms won’t go off as easily. “I’m going to open the restaurant as soon as I get everything ready,” Richard said when interviewed in early April. Contractors were busy making renovations indoors, and also expanding the outside patio that was started the previous year. “I thought it was a saleswoman when the Chamber called,” he recounted, laughing, but eventually Chamber President Cathy Paty got through that he’d actually won an award. “It was quite a surprise, I didn’t expect it,” he said. “I don’t know why I got it. I’m friends with a lot of people, and I’ve made a lot of friends since I’ve owned this business. It’s been great up here. If I put I’m going to have a change on Facebook, within one hour I get one thousand responses,” he said. People respond, they give me ideas, like ‘how about a lower price lunch?’ so I’m thinking of putting on a six-dollar grab-and-go menu. You get a soda, a sandwich, and a salad, and you’re out the door. I go with what the people want, instead of what I want to do.” The new location is attracting a new clientele, and Richard’s previous customers from Gino’s Restaurant in Port Jervis are now following him to his new location. Richard’s family all help run the business with him near the Delaware River and on Route 97 in Pond Eddy. 2014


Drs. Dean & Linda Tintle Wurtsboro Veterinary Clinic By Guy Charles Harriton


he Wurtsboro Veterinary Clinic’s Mission: “To provide high quality pet health and wellness services to assist your pet in living a longer, happier and healthier life. “To provide our clients with access to leading edge products and service and authoritative educational content focusing on enhancing the human animal bond.” That mission is just what the Wurtsboro Veterinary Clinic has been doing since 1984. And as a testament to this mission, veterinarians Linda and Dean G. Tintle have seen it grow from a small, part-time outpatient clinic to the buy full-service hospital it is today. The Tintles are graduates of the prestigious College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University, and got married their senior year at the school. Dr. Dean has a special interest in surgery, dentistry and practice management. He hails from Pompton Lakes, NJ and joined brother Kevin’s Middletown Veterinary Hospital after graduation. In the mid-1990s he joined his wife’s growing practice, which had started as a satellite office. Dr. Linda also comes from North Jersey and is an aficionado and expert on Shar-Pei dogs, sensitive to their special health issues. To this end, she began working with scientists at Cornell’s College of Veterinary Medicine to research and help correct health problems of this beautiful breed, which she first owned in 1981. She has a special interest in internal medicine and has collaborated on research in cancer and inflammatory bowel disease. Dr. Linda has received many honors and wears many hats – she is president of the Orange County Animal Emergency Service in Middletown; Regional Director and Past President for the Hudson Valley Veterinary Medical Society (HVVMS); served on the Ex-


Contributed Photo

Drs. Dean and Linda Tintle have grown the Wurtsboro Veterinary Clinic into a full-service animal hospital. ecutive Board of the New York State Veterinary Medical Society; and serves on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University. The pets of Wurtsboro and surrounding areas are her main focus, though Shar-pei owners come to consult her from as far away as Virginia. Working in Wurtsboro is “the best of both worlds,” especially since she grew up in a rural area, and loves its community pride and spirit. At the same time, she noted, “I’m close to Cornell and New York City, where I do research.” Not one to forget where she came from, Dr. Linda says she enjoys being a mentor to young veterinarians and although she sees retirement down the road, she says, “I can’t see myself being anything but a vet.” She and Dr. Dean strive to prevent illness whenever possible. And, like good doctors, the Tintles “recommend individual programs designed specifically for your pet and may include a comprehensive physical exam, internal parasite testing, heart worm and flea control, vaccination programs, spay or neuter, dental- health exam and specialized blood and urine tests for all stages of your pet’s life.” P R I D E AWA R D S 2 5

Dean & Linda, Congratulations on your achievements!

s ation l u t a r Cong e A ward r P id pients Reci Your Hosts Bill & Bob Sipos


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Susan & James Sheeley Sheeley Oil & Excavating By Guy Anya Tikka


usan and James. R. Sheeley run their Sheeley’s Oil and Excavating business together in Grahamsville. “I do bookkeeping, phone work, all office work,” Susan explained. “We do a lot of home heating fuel, and all aspects of excavating,” James added. “We’re a small town business. I try to do a very good job for a reasonable price. I stand behind my work,” James expanded about why he thought he received the Pride Award. “It’s nine months of excavating and contracting,” he continued. “Oil is 12 months but concentrated in winter.” Sheeley’s Oil and Excavating has two long term workers who, according to James, do a lot and are a big part of its success: Patrick Gorman and Ronald Mickelson. “My grandfather started the business,” he continued. It was founded as the Earl D. Sheeley and Son Oil Inc. firm, just for oil and trucking which in the ’30s and ’40s was coal, milk, and ice. In fact, there are still two businesses. James founded Sheeley’s Oil and Excavating, but also kept the Earl D. Sheeley on the advice of their attorney. A big part of James’ work consists of projects, including septic work, installing driveways, all site work for new home projects, and drainage work, as well as heating oil.

Ben Knight



Neversink, NY (845) 985-0516 2014



Our Community is Grateful to have you.

Congratulations James & Susan Sheeley!

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Susan and James Sheeley now run the firm founded by James’ grandfather in the 1940s. “We work a lot for (the Catskill Watershed Corporation (CWC), who are the agents working with replacing septic systems in the New York City watershed,” Susan said. “It works very well.” The CWC is a Local Development Corporation established to protect the water quality in the New York City West of the Hudson River Watershed . “When they called us, I was very happy and proud,” Susan said about her reaction to the news they had been chosen for the Pride Award. “James works very hard, and he does a wonderful job. All our customers call me and tell me what a great job he’s done. So it’s great to be recognized for that.” “I was happy they were thinking of me, and appreciating the time I put in,” James added. “A lot of that is to due to my two long term employees. It’s a team effort. They take pride in our work.” “Grahamsville is a nice small town. I’ve always tried to help in the best way I can,” he concluded. The Sheeleys have three children, Michael, married to Deanna; Megan, married to Jason Bates; and Karyn, married to Mike Diescher. They are the proud grandparents of Brea Sheeley and Aedea Bates, with another on the way thanks to Michael and Deanna.

shaver enterprises, inc.


P R I D E AWA R D S 2 7


Dr. Mary Austin Austin Physical Therapy By Dan Hust


ustin Physical Therapy literally began in Mary Austin’s home. The physical therapist had up till then worked mainly in hospitals and schools, offering her services privately only to parents of infants and toddlers not yet in school. But word spread of her capabilities. “This outpatient business started with a few people in the front living room of my house,” Mary recalled. “In 2007, the outpatient business took up half of my family’s living space, so it was moved to our present location on the main street of Roscoe.” Roscoe has been Mary’s home for nearly her entire life. A graduate of Roscoe Central School, she earned a physical education degree from Ithaca College, then headed north to Upstate Medical University in Syracuse for a degree in physical therapy.

Her first job was with Boston Children’s Hospital in Massachusetts, but when she married in 1977, Mary moved to Syracuse, where her husband worked. They decided to return to her hometown in 1985. “Roscoe was a good fit for my family, as a positive environment for my children to grow and develop,” Mary affirmed. “Although they all live in other areas now, friends and family in Roscoe gave them a secure foundation to start their lives and develop the self-confidence and security to attain higher education and develop successful personal and professional lives.” And they have their mother as a continuing role model. In 2008, Mary earned her clinical doctorate in physical therapy from Massachusetts General Hospital Institute.


Sullivan Pride Honorees Celebrating Over 100 Years of Community Banking!

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Bryce & Jamy Flynn Everyday Apparel By Guy Charles Harriton


veryday Apparel, owned by Bryce and Jamie Flynn, is the the epitome of the American success store. “We started 18 years ago out of our garage,” Bryce commented, adding that now they have a huge store that has five full-time employees and meets the needs of those who wear uniforms throughout Sullivan County and beyond. The Flynns purchased Universal Uniforms and changed the name to Everyday Apparel some eight years ago and “revamped all the product lines and updated everything,” much to the delight of their customers. Updating everything translates into the highest quality embroidery, screen printing, plaques and awards. Contractors who put their companies’ names and logos on their uniforms and area police, fire and sheriff’s departments couldn’t be happier with the level of service. This includes clients such as Monticello and Liberty

Police Departments. And if contractors need boots and clothing, they need not go any further than Everyday Apparel. Everything is designed in-house i.e. logos for businesses and uniforms. “We carry all sizes to accommodate all employees,” Bryce said. And, where do Bryce and Jamy see themselves five years down the road? “Still providing the highest level of service and quality products and expanding the business,” they responded, “and doing the right thing for people.” That was a phrase said numerous times in a heartfelt manner. The Pride Award, “Makes us feel good that we are recognized for the hard work we’ve done for the past 18 years,” Bryce said.



We Value our Clients


by Providing

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845.888.5656 r ou iscpa m P R I D E AWA R D S 2 9


Patrick & Peggy Harrison Rasmussen’s Furniture/Funeral Home Story and photo by Anya Tikka


atrick and Peggy Harrison have owned Rasmussen’s Furniture Store in Narrowsburg since 2004, and, “Business is doing well,” said Patrick. In the same transaction, they purchased the Rasmussen Funeral Home next door from Ron and Jane Rasmussen. The funeral home dates from 1898. The furniture store is 109 years old, and both businesses have the distinction of being owned by only two families. The Harrisons, who “work together 24/7” according to Peggy, run three businesses, and still find time for community involvement and their children’s school activities. The energetic couple sat down in their Main St., Narrowsburg furniture showroom in between appointments. “It’s the only way to be,” beamed Peggy when asked about what keeps her so happy in her busy schedule, and Patrick agreed. “It’s the oldest [type of] business in the United States,” Patrick said, explaining the link between furniture and funeral homes. “Historically, carpenters made the coffins, and it went from there.” Patrick is a third generation funeral director, and Peg also comes from a family with roots in the business. A few years after moving to the area the


Harrisons opened the Harrison-Rasmussen Funeral Home in Barryville. The couple expressed surprise at getting the Pride Award. “We’re very honest,” Peggy mused over why the furniture store got the nomination. “We always try to participate, and give back to the community.” Patrick completed her thought, something the couple did repeatedly. “We’ve sponsored sports, and contributed to charities,” he said. About their furniture business, Patrick and Peggy said they have a very loyal customer base, the members of which keep coming back. “People will always buy quality,” Patrick explained, noting that they serve an area beyond Sullivan County. “A customer last week furnished his whole new house in Breezy Point, Long Island from our furniture store,” Peggy said. Both are originally from the area; Patrick from Archbald, PA, and Peggy from Matamoras, PA. The couple has two kids, Patrick 14, and Molly, 13. The furniture store is open every day, except Mondays.

of Sullivan County

Published by Catskill-Delaware Publications, Inc. publishers of the Sullivan County Democrat in cooperation with the Sullivan County Chamber of Commerce. Publisher Fred Stabbert III Editor Frank Rizzo Design and Layout Rosalie Mycka Director of Marketing Laura Stabbert Display Advertising Director Liz Tucker Advertising Sales Katie Peake & Cecilia Lamy Advertising Design Petra Duffy Business Manager Sue Owens Production Tracy Swendsen

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Patrick and Peg Harrison in their furniture showroom, ready to serve their customers.

Tuesday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. 90 Main Street, Narrowsburg, NY 12764




Congratulations to all the Sullivan County Pride Award Winners! Your enthusiasm, commitment and long list of stellar accomplishments is a tribute to each and every one of you. We thank you for your efforts in helping to make Sullivan County such a great place to live, work and play. May you all have much continued success as you carry on with your life’s endeavors. And to Greg Goldstein, Elaine Giguere, Alexis Eggleton and Brad Rutledge… Not only are you wonderful people to your outstanding families but also to the family which is Sullivan County. We thank you for having such a strong sense of pride in our county From all your friends at the…

“Sullivan County’s Hometown Newspaper, Since 1891” 845-887-5200 2014

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Pride of Sullivan County 2014