Page 1

New life for an old building: Homer’s Briggs Hall reopened for business. Page 2.

Special Report: Healthcare Quarterly. Page 7.









Vol. XXVI • No. 18






May 4, 2012


Burdick Chevrolet rolls into new spot at Driver’s Village


SyracuseFirst, CenterState CEO partner to support local companies





CICERO — Roger Burdick thinks he has his newly relocated Chevrolet dealership on the road to sales growth. Burdick Chevrolet opened at the Driver’s Village Inc. campus in March, leaving its former home at 604 Old Liverpool Road in Salina for the dealership complex at 5885 E. Circle Drive in Cicero. The Chevrolet dealership, which generates about $45 million in revenue annually, could be in line for revenue growth of more than 10 percent this year, according to Burdick, the president of Driver’s Village. “This is a great time to be a Chevrolet dealer,” he says. “Chevrolet is really coming back strong with new products.” Vehicles like the 2012 Sonic (national sales of that vehicle rose 38 percent in April) and 2013 Malibu are giving the brand competitive models, according to Burdick. And the move to Driver’s Village should help the dealership increase its sales, he adds. “We have Interstate 81 going by on the east, we’re right at the intersection between [Route] 481 and Route 11,” he says. “In See BURDICK, page 16


SYRACUSE — SyracuseFirst and CenterState CEO are launching a new partnership to encourage more support for locally owned businesses. Members of SyracuseFirst, a nonprofit launched in 2009 to promote


Cafe Kubal, one of the businesses participating in SyracuseFirst.

See PARTNER, page 18

Anaren continues cost cutting BY KEVIN TAMPONE JOURNAL STAFF

DeWITT — Anaren, Inc. (NASDAQ: ANEN) has continued cutting jobs in the face of declining profits and sales. The DeWitt–based company began eliminating jobs last July and has so far reduced its work force of 1,000 employees by 19 percent, CFO George Blanton said during an April 25 conference call to dis-

cuss Anaren’s latest quarterly results. The moves resulted in personnel savings of $6.6 million, Blanton said. The company also took other steps to cut costs during its most recent quarter that will bring total cost savings to $11 million annually. Total operating expenses for the quarter ending March 31 fell to $9.9 million from $11.8 million in the same period last year. Through the first nine months of Anaren’s fiscal year, ending March 31,

operating expenses totaled $30.8 million, down from about $34 million in the yearearlier period. Anaren, which has locations in the Syracuse area, New Hampshire, Colorado, and China, did not provide further details on the job cuts. The company develops and manufactures components and subsystems for applications in sectors includSee ANAREN, page 17













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• The Central New York Business Journal

CNYBJ.COM BRIEFS News of note for and about Central New York businesses

New bookstore, A Fiction Addiction, to open in Salina SALINA — A new bookstore, called A Fiction Addiction, will soon open for business in a 5,000-square-feet retail space at 2830 Lemoyne Ave. in the town of Salina. The business, owned by Robert Gray, will sell new and used books and expects to open on May 1. Charles Cavallaro and James Babikian own the building, located at the corner of Lemoyne Ave. and Molloy Road. Paul Myles and Martin McDermott of JF Real Estate helped arrange the lease transaction. Financial terms were not provided.

Randi Bregman selected as a 2012 New York State “Woman of Distinction” Vera House Executive Director Randi Bregman has been selected as a 2012 New York State “Woman of Distinction.” Bregman was chosen for the award by State Senator David J. Valeksy and will be honored May 15 at a ceremony in Albany. The senate’s “Women of Distinction” program was created in 1998 to honor New York women who exemplify personal excellence, or whose professional achievements or acts of courage, selflessness, integrity, or perseverance serve as an example to all New Yorkers.

New York egg production rose last year New York poultry farmers produced 1.26 billion eggs in 2011, up 8 percent from 2010. The resulting total value of egg production last year was $83.9 million, up 27 percent from the 2010 eggproduction value of $66.2 million. That’s according to King Whetstone, director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service, New York Field Office.

May 4, 2012

Homer developer’s vision for Main Street area takes hold BROOKE LEONE CONTRIBUTING WRITER

HOMER — Builder and developer Thomas R. Niederhofer has had a vision for refurbishing the North Main Street area of Homer ever since he bought a nearby factory there in the mid-1990s. Now, it’s coming to fruition. Niederhofer, owner and manager of TN Custom Homes, recently invested in the former Briggs Hall Memorial Home, Homer Laundry and Cleaners Inc., and two connecting buildings on the laundry building.

Funeral home

Niederhofer started looking into the Briggs Hall funeral home when he purchased the Marathon Line Factory, in 1995, which is connected to the grounds of Briggs Hall. As in most real-estate negotiations, the owner, Bud Hall, and Niederhofer went back and forth before settling on a price. Niederhofer explains, “Mr. Hall and I had talked on several occasions, so he knew I had always been interested in the property.” The former funeral home is about 6,500 square feet, he says. It is situated on 1.67 acres at 11 N. Main St. and valued at $200,000, according to Cortland County real property tax records.


With great detail, Niederhofer’s crew and sub-contractors reconstructed the roof, windows, and the inside of the former funeral home in March 2011, while also repainting the exterior. “I call this ‘curb appeal’. I do the outside of the building first to brighten up the building and to get a response from the community,” Niederhofer says. Niederhofer has been working with the First National Bank of Dryden throughout his home-building and remodeling career in Homer. During the Briggs Hall renovation, Niederhofer took out a loan from the bank for the purchase price of the building and invested $100,000 of his own money into the project. The improved former Briggs Hall funeral home will now cater to a reception hall on the lower level and two apartments on the


The newly renovated Briggs Hall in Homer. Owner Thomas Niederhofer’s crew and sub-contractors reconstructed the roof, windows, and the inside of the former funeral home in March 2011, while also repainting the exterior. top level. Niederhofer is the landlord and project manager of Briggs Hall. He is bringing the building up to code while remodeling the upstairs apartments. The structure will be able to accommodate 100 people and is leased out to another individual whom Niederhofer declined to name. He says another $80,000 will be invested into the downstairs portion of the property. The tenant will be able to remodel the space to his specific needs, according to Niederhofer. The apartments are refurbished with new windows but still maintain the original older design. “I hope to keep as much of the old appeal that the building comes with as possible,” Niederhofer says. He hopes to bring in revenue from future tenants as soon as possible.

The Laundry and Cleaners

The second piece of Niederhofer’s Homer development includes buying the Homer Laundry and Cleaners Inc. as well as the two connecting buildings. While remodeling the former Briggs Hall funeral home, he was asked by the previous owner of the adjacent

Taste of Success

Wine, Beer & Culinary

buildings about purchasing the property. The structures share a parking lot between the Sherman block and Briggs Hall. Nierderhofer says he has negotiated and completed a purchase offer with the owner. He adds that his loan application was approved by the First National Bank of Dryden for the purchase as well as the remodeling. The property has five storefronts in addition to the three apartments upstairs. “I plan on remodeling it into five retail stores and I already have interest from people in the community wanting to rent space from it…,” Niederhofer says. He will begin with the upstairs apartments first and then work on the exterior of the buildings after that. What Niederhofer calls the “Sherman Block,” has 1,500 square feet of space. Niederhofer sees this remodel as a positive step for the community of Homer. “As Homer’s business district becomes more vital and attractive, more business owners are drawn to it. Local business owners benefit from the increase in customers and the surrounding homeowners are happy beSee BRIGGS HALL, page 23

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The Central New York Business Journal • 3

May 4, 2012

SU names 16 Kauffman Fellows By Kevin Tampone Journal Staff

SYRACUSE — The Syracuse University (SU) Kauffman Entrepreneurship Engagement Fellows program has continued growing since its beginning three years ago. This year’s group totals 16 students, up from 10 a year earlier and just two in the program’s first year in 2009-2010. The students receive one year of tuition at the university and make a commitment to stay in Central New York and start some sort of entrepreneurial venture. Some end up growing companies here and providing real jobs, says Bruce Kingma, SU associate provost for entrepreneurship and innovation. Others use the experience as a springboard to local employment elsewhere. The overall goal is to help some of SU’s best students grow roots in Central New York, Kingma says. “This is helping,” he says. “We’re putting people in Syracuse that have offers elsewhere.” The four fellows from the effort’s first two years all still live in Syracuse. The first group included a co-founder of, which recently attracted $1.2 million in investment and won the $200,000 grand prize in the 2011 Creative Core Emerging Business Competition. The idea that entrepreneurship can be a valid path is catching on among students at SU, Kingma adds. It can provide a route to a living based around a passion or provide unique experience when applying for jobs at other companies. The lackluster employment market is probably a contributing factor to the trend, but not the sole explanation, Kingma says. “When you’re really engaged with experiential entrepreneurship, you simply find it more exciting,” he says. Students often spend their entire college careers working on entrepreneurial projects, Kingma says, thanks to a combination of classes and programs like the Raymond von Dran Innovation and Disruptive Entrepreneurship Accelerator (IDEA), which aims to spark more student ventures. That leaves many of them with a desire to continue that work into a fifth year. Kingma also notes that being an entrepreneur and working for another company aren’t mutually exclusive. Students often combine both successfully, he says. This year’s fellows are working on projects including The Palette, an e-commerce site and mobile shop where SU students can promote and sell their art work, and Performance Driving School, which aims to teach proper driving rules, skills, and techniques combined with car-performance basics, according to SU. Other projects include Waterport, which is developing a

photo courtesy of syracuse university

Andrew Taggart, one of the students involved in the Syracuse University (SU) Kauffman Entrepreneurship Engagement Fellows program. This year’s group totals 16 students, up from 10 a year earlier and just two in the program’s first year in 2009-2010.

portable and self-sustained rainwater-har- spark more entrepreneurship and innovavesting system to turn rain into drinking tion in Central New York. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation water in impoverished villages, and SocialU 101, a platform to help older individuals supports the fellows program and funded the launch of Enitiative in 2007 with a with social media. q The Engagement Fellows program was $3 million grant. launched in 2009 by Imagining America, a national consortium of more than 80 col- Contact Tampone at Sandler_Regionals_1-3PG.qxd 8/7/07 2:22 PM Page 2 leges, and Enitiative, an SU-led project to

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• The Central New York Business Journal

May 4, 2012

Oneida Financial profit rises almost 42 percent

Oneida Financial Corp.

Symbol: ONFC Recent price: 10.60 52-week high: 10.60 52-week low: 8.30 52-week change: 19.80% Exch: NYSE 6-month history

port record first-quarter net income while terest income increased 13.1 percent, or continuing to grow our banking and insur- $790,000, to $6.8 million. That increase ance business,â&#x20AC;? Oneida Financial President stems primarily from a $558,000 increase 11 ONEIDA â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Across-the-board increases and CEO Michael R. Kallet said in a news in commissions and fees on the sale of 10.5 in interest income, non interest income, release. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Oneida Savings Bank is also non-bank products through the companyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s and investment gains, coupled with a de- pleased to report a record level of assets insurance and financial-services subsidiar10 creased provision for loan losses, pro- and deposits at March 31, 2012, while our ies as well as a $311,000 increase in loan duced a strong first quarter for Oneida insurance and financial-services subsidiar- sale and servicing income. 9.5 ies, Bailey & Haskell Associates, Inc. and Oneida Financialâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s earnings results benFinancial Corp. Oneida Financial, (NASDAQ: ONFC), Benefit Consulting Group, Inc., once again efited from a $250,000 reduction in its 9 0RQGD\-XQH provision for loan losses, which fell from parent company posted record first-quarter revenue.â&#x20AC;? Oneida Financialâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s stock closed at $10.40 DWWKH3RPSH\&OXE $400,000 last year to $150,000 this year. of Oneida Savings 8.5 Net charge-offs during the quarter totaled Bank, reported on April 24, the day the company released 5HJLVWUDWLRQEHJLQVDP 8 $43,000. net income of its earnings after the market close. On 6KRWJXQ6WDUWSP The banking company also received $2 million, or 29 April 25, the share price rose 19 cents, or %URXJKWWR\RXE\ N11 D11 J12 F12 M12 A12 cents per share, 1.8 percent, to close at $10.59. Year to date, a boost from $97,000 in net investment QUARTERLY REPORT in the quarter, up Oneida Financial shares had gained 11.5 gains, compared with $224,000 in losses during the first quarter of 2011, when the nearly 42 percent percent. Headquartered in Oneida, Oneida During the first quarter, Oneida company took a $204,000 non-cash impairfrom net income of $1.4 million, or 20 Financialâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s net interest income edged up ment charge in connection with some Financial Corp. (www.oneidafinancial. cents, in the year-ago period. com) is the parent company of Oneida preferred securities. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Oneida Financial Corp. is pleased to re- by $26,000 to $4.9 million while non-in- 7KLVHYHQWLVDJUHDWRSSRUWXQLW\WRVKRZ\RXUFXVWRPHUV\RXUDSSUHFLDWLRQ :HÂśYHJRWWKHFRXUVHWKHIRRGDQGGULQNDQGZHNQRZKRZWRHQWHUWDLQ\RXU Oneida Financialâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s non interest expense Savings Bank, which has 12 branches in &$37$,1 &5(: FXVWRPHUV3URFHHGVEHQHÂż W&1<60(6FKRODUVKLS)XQGDQG+LOOVLGH:RUN grew during the quarter, increasing from Madison, Oneida, and Onondaga counLQGLYLGXDOJROIHURU 6FKRODUVKLS&RQQHFWLRQ +:6&  0RQGD\-XQH $8.9 million a year ago to $9.4 million ties; State Bank of Chittenango; Bailey, IRXUVRPH 0RQGD\-XQH DWWKH3RPSH\&OXE due to increases in compensation and em- Haskell & LaLonde Agency, an insurance ,QFOXGHVKROHVRIJROIZLWKFDUW Founded in 1987, Hillside Workâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;Scholarship Connection is an affiliate DWWKH3RPSH\&OXE and risk-management company; Benefit ployee benefits coupled with increased OXQFKRQFRXUVHEHYHUDJHVDQG 5HJLVWUDWLRQEHJLQVDP of Hillside Family of Agencies. The program serves nearly 4,000youth atâ&#x20AC;&#x201C; 5HJLVWUDWLRQEHJLQVDP Consulting Group, an employee-benefits selling expenses related to the increase in VQDFNV3RPSH\6WHDN 6KRWJXQ6WDUWSP risk of dropping out of school in Rochester, N.Y., Syracuse, N.Y., Buffalo 6KRWJXQ6WDUWSP consulting and retirement-plan administrasales insurance and other non-banking %DNHGLQQHUDQGJROIHU %URXJKWWR\RXE\ NY.Y, and inofPrince Georgeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s County, M.D. Hillside Workâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;Scholarship %URXJKWWR\RXE\ tion firm;longâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;term and Workplace Health Solutions, JLYHÂąDZD\JLIWLWHP products. Connectionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s youth development model is comprehensive and uniqueâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;combining a risk-management company specializing mentoring with job training, partâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;time workhas experience and yearâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;round academic support. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Oneida Financial Corp. continued to deploy our business strategies, which in workplace-injury claims management. position us as a diversified banking and Âł6XSSRUW(GXFDWLRQ Contact DeLore at This event is a great opportunity financial-services company,â&#x20AC;? Kallet said. SPONSORSHIP By Traci DeLore Journal Staff

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The Central New York Business Journal • 5

May 4, 2012

Hobby Lobby boosts full-time minimum wage to $13 per hour Part-time workers’ minimum pay will rise to $9 an hour BY TRACI DELORE JOURNAL STAFF


obby Lobby Stores, Inc., which operates stores in Fayetteville and Clay, recently increased its minimum wage to $13 an hour for full-time employees and $9 per hour for part-time workers. Hobby Lobby says 15,300 of its 21,402 total employees will benefit from the increased minimum wage. Of those employ-

ees receiving pay raises, about 41 percent work part time and 59 percent are full-time employees, Vincent Parker, director of training and customer service, says in an email. The national minimum wage is currently $7.25 an hour. The New York Assembly has proposed legislation that if adopted would raise the minimum wage in the state to $8.50 per hour. Oklahoma City–based Hobby Lobby, which has more than 500 stores in 41 states, says it’s boosting wages to reward and retain current employees. “Our employees are essential to the continued success of Hobby Lobby stores nationwide,” company CEO and founder David Green said in an April 16 news release announcing the increase. “We believe

they deserve to be recognized for their commitment to our company.” This is the fourth year Hobby Lobby has raised its minimum wage, including a hike to $12 per hour last year for fulltime employees and $8.50 for part-timers. Employees earning above the minimum wage are eligible for merit increases, Parker says. Privately held Hobby Lobby does not disclose revenue figures, but Parker says the wage increase reflects the company’s

success, which it believes in sharing with employees. The company plans continued growth in 2012, opening 33 new stores and adding 1,200 jobs. Hobby Lobby recently opened a store in Las Vegas and will open stores in California, Florida, and North Carolina in the coming months. Hobby Lobby also has a store in New Hartford in the Hannaford Plaza. Green founded Hobby Lobby ( in 1972. Hobby Lobby and its affiliates, which include Hemispheres and Crafts, Etc!, carries no long-term debt. Stores are open only 66 hours per week and are closed on Sundays.  Contact DeLore at

SBA honors Chobani with Entrepreneurial Success of the Year Award BY JOURNAL STAFF

SOUTH EDMESTON — Greek yogurt maker Chobani is this year’s winner of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s 2012 Entrepreneurial Success of the Year Award. KeyBank, N.A. nominated Chobani and the Small Business Administration (SBA) selected the company for its dramatic

growth in sales, employees, and business size as well as for its charitable contributions. Chobani got its start in 2005, using an SBA-backed loan to purchase a closed Kraft Foods plant in South Edmeston in Chenango County. The company started with five employees and a yogurt product it sold to a single grocery store. Today, Chobani is the top-selling yogurt in the

country, shipping 1.7 million cases a week to stores nationwide, according to the SBA. In 2011, Chobani expanded its operations abroad and began selling in Australia and Canada. The company employs more than 1,200 people and will hire another 400 later this year when it opens a new production facility in Twin Falls, Idaho. The

900,000-square-foot, high-efficiency facility will be the largest yogurt plant in the country. Chobani founder, president, and CEO Hamdi Ulukaya will accept the SBA’s Syracuse District and Regional awards at a luncheon May 2 in Albany. He will accept the national award during the SBA’s National Small Business Week celebration May 22 in Washington, D.C.

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• The Central New York Business Journal

May 4, 2012

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The Central New York Business Journal • 7


May 4, 2012


INSIDE Social media: Social media presents opportunity for health-care groups. Page 8

v Survey: Major health-care plans’ costs to rise in lockstep. Page 9

v Survey says: Employeewellness programs on the rise. Page 10

v New hires & promotions Health-Care People-On-TheMove News. Page 13

v A supplement to The Central New York

Business Journal

Excellus will keep local emphasis, CEO-elect says By Rick Seltzer Journal Staff


  xcellus BlueCross BlueShield will   remain a regional company with work   forces in various areas of New York, according to the CEO-elect of the health plan and its parent company. “We believe the local employment is good for our company,” says Christopher Booth, who is currently the president of Excellus, Central New York’s largest health insurer. “People like to do business with their neighbors. I think it is the right thing to do for communities, and I think it is the right thing to do for our company.” The Lifetime Healthcare Companies, which is the Rochester–based parent of Excellus, announced at the beginning of April that Booth will be its next CEO and the next CEO of Excellus. Booth will assume the CEO role after the not-for-profit group’s current CEO, David Klein, retires at the end of the year. Excellus currently employs 950 people in Central New York. It employs 400 people in Utica and 30 in the Southern Tier. The Lifetime Healthcare Companies has more than 6,500 employees. Booth first joined the Lifetime Healthcare Companies in 2004 as chief administrative officer and general counsel. He has also held the roles of executive vice president for commercial markets and health-care affairs as well as executive vice president and COO. However, he was familiar with the company before joining it. Booth spent nearly two decades at Hinman Straub P.C., which is the Lifetime Healthcare Companies’ outside legal counsel in Albany. Booth worked closely with the health insurer while at Hinman Straub. The chairman of the Lifetime Healthcare Companies board of directors, Randall Clark, called Booth the “architect of our entire corporation” in a statement announcing Booth’s selection as CEO in waiting. “I was the person that sort of put together the mergers of the Blue plans from Syracuse, Utica, and Rochester, both from a legal structure and a regulatory-approval process,” Booth says. “And then I worked with the company on

“I was the person that sort of put together the mergers of the Blue plans from Syracuse, Utica, and Rochester, both from a legal structure and a regulatoryapproval process,” Booth says. “And then I worked with the company on how it should operate. Both it and its subsidiaries.” how it should operate. Both it and its subsidiaries.” Booth says he will have to refresh his knowledge of some of the Lifetime Healthcare Companies’ subsidiaries as he prepares to take over as CEO, which will make him responsible for those subsidiaries. Currently, he is responsible solely for Excellus. The Lifetime Healthcare Companies’ other subsidiaries include MedAmerica, which provides long-term care insurance to more than

Your local source for business news and information

122,000 national policyholders; Lifetime Health Medical Group, a provider of direct medical care for over 80,000 patients in the Buffalo and Rochester areas; and Lifetime Care Home Care and Hospice, which serves 22,000 people a year. Other subsidiaries include Sibley Nursing Personnel Services, which helps home-care patients and temporary medical-staffing clients in 31 New York counties; EBS-RMSCO, which offers employee-benefits and risk-management services for 4,000 U.S. employers; and Support Services Alliance, which offers employee-benefits services for 6,000 businesses and acts as a general agent for over 300 brokers. “Some of those subsidiaries reported to me in the past,” Booth says. “I’m familiar with them, and I’ve had responsibility for them in the past.” Excellus is reviewing its subsidiaries and their operations, Booth says. He declined to discuss specific plans for the future, however. The 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the federal health-reform law, will be the main issue for the Excellus health plan moving forward, Booth says. The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule on that law’s constitutionality in June. “We don’t know what the court’s going to do,” Booth says. “Our assumption is that the law is going to be in effect, and we have to be ready.” Excellus is preparing to engage consumers in the new state health-insurance exchange called for in the federal law, Booth says. It is also trying to work with hospital systems and doctors to keep down health-care costs. “People are very dissatisfied with the [price] increases year-to-year,” he says. “That needs to be the priority going forward. Some of that work we need to do as an insurance company. Some of that work providers need to do. Some of it needs to be done between insurance providers and community leaders.” The Lifetime Healthcare Companies is a $6.2 billion not-for-profit organization that provides health insurance to more than 1.8 million people and sells long-term care coverage in all 50 states. q Contact Seltzer at

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• The Central New York Business Journal

healthcare quarterly

May 4, 2012

Report: Social media presents opportunity for health-care groups By Rick Seltzer Journal Staff


  bout one-third of consumers use   social media for health discussions,   according to a report released in April by the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) Health Industries Group. Those discussions range from using online forums, Facebook, and Twitter to track and share symptoms to using websites to share opinions on doctors and drugs. For instance, 42 percent of consumers have used social media to check reviews of treatments and physicians, according to the report. Consumers’ use of social media gives health-care entities like insurers, hospitals, medical manufacturers, and privatephysician practices a chance to meet the needs of their customers, according to Karla Anderson, a partner in PwC’s pharmaceuticals and life sciences practice and one of the report’s authors. “Whether you choose to be an active participant or not, people are talking about their experiences and sharing information,” Anderson says. “Recognizing [social media] as a viable and growing channel is, I think, what organizations really need to focus on.” The PwC report, released April 17 and titled “Social media ‘likes’ healthcare: From marketing to social business,” includes a national survey of 1,060 U.S. adults. PwC, which operates in 158 countries and provides quality assurance, tax, and advisory

Social media activity activityamong amonghealth healthorganizations organizations Social-media varies varies by organization type

by organization type

Source: HRI Week in the Life Of Analysis, 2012

services, also surveyed 124 members of interviews with 30 health-care industry exthe eHealth Initiative, national associaecutives. Authors also tracked social-media PwC Health ResearchaInstitute – Social media “likes” healthcare tion of health-information and technology activity from hospitals, drug manufacturChart Pack industry executives. ers, and online patient communities for a In addition, the report includes data from weeklong snapshot.

“It’s interesting when you start to monitor social-media sites,” Anderson says. “You 14 start to see a consensus among consumers See Report, page 12

MEDICAL TRENDS healthcare quarterly

Prescription drug, dental, and vision trends

The Buck Consultants survey also looked at cost trends for prescription drugs, dental insurance, and vision insurance. Health insurers projected a 9.6-percent increase in prescription-drug costs in 2012.

2nd Half 2007

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0% 1st Half 2005




chart courtesy of buck consultants, llc

Medical POS

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Contact Seltzer at


1st Half 2006




  ifferent types of employer  provided health-insurance plans   will increase in cost at virtually identical rates in 2012, according to a recent national survey from Buck Consultants, LLC. The National Health Care Trend Survey 2012, which the human-resources and benefits consulting firm Buck Consultants released April 5, projected that preferredprovider organization plans (PPO), pointof-service plans (POS), health-maintenance organization plans (HMO), and high-deductible health plans (HDHP) will all increase in cost by nearly 10 percent this year. Insurers use the cost-increase projections, or “trend factors,” to help calculate premium rates, according to Buck Consultants. The projections are not the same as planned premium increases, but they generally reflect pressures such as inflation, utilization of services, technology, mandated benefits, and changes in services. This year’s survey shows that insurers are placing less emphasis on plan type when projecting cost increases, according to Daniel Levin, a principal in Buck Consultants’ health and productivity practice and a consulting actuary who directed the survey. “Insurers see these as names of networks and not a delivery model,” he says. “They don’t feel confident that the differences are large enough to warrant using different trends.” Buck Consultants recorded responses from 129 insurers and administrators for the survey, measuring their projected average annual increase in employer-provided healthcare benefit costs. Survey respondents cover a total of about 109 million people, according to the consulting firm. Health insurers operating in Central New York that responded to the survey include Aetna, UnitedHealthcare, and Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, the region’s largest health insurer. However, the survey did not include a regional breakdown of data. The 9.9-percent cost increase projected across plan types in 2012 is lower than increases predicted in previous years. In 2011, survey respondents predicted an 11.2-percent rise in medical PPO costs. They projected an 11-percent jump in medical POS costs. Last year’s survey showed that insurers expected medical HMO costs to rise by 11 percent. And they predicted HDHP costs would increase by 11.1 percent in 2011. Several factors may have helped hold down projected cost increases in 2012, according to the survey. They include consumers spending less on health care because of continued economic difficulties and insurers having a better grasp on anticipated costs caused by federal health-care reform mandates. In addition, wellness programs and preventive care may be helping to hold down costs, according to Levin.

That’s down from 10.7 percent in last year’s survey. Pharmacy-benefit managers, which act as administrators for self-insured plans and insurance companies, predicted cost increases of just 4.6 percent in 2012, down from 6.1 percent in 2011. Generics are probably causing the slowdown in projected drug costs, Levin says. “We thought 10, 15 years ago, if you could get to 60 percent generic utilization, that is terrific,” he says. “Now we’re telling our clients at 71 percent that they can do better. They can get to 80 percent generic utilization.” Insurers anticipate dental HMO costs will climb 4.9 percent in 2012, the survey found, on par with last year’s projected increase of 5 percent. They believe dental PPO costs will rise 5.6 percent, which is also in line with last year, when insurers predicted a 5.7 percent increase. Survey respondents said that costs for scheduled vision services will rise by 2 percent in 2012, the same increase predicted in 2011. They expect other vision costs to climb by 3 percent, also identical to last year’s projections. Buck Consultants employs more than 1,500 people worldwide. The consulting company is a subsidiary of Norwalk, Conn.– based Xerox (NYSE: XRX). q


Journal Staff


2nd Half 2005


By Rick Seltzer






Survey: Major health-care plans’ costs to rise in lockstep

The Central New York Business Journal • 9

Medical PPO Medical PPO Projected Cost Increases


May 4, 2012



0% 1st Half 2005

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SURVEY FINDINGS Survey: Employer wellness programs PREVALENCE OF WELLNESS PROGRAMS on the rise 10


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ore employers are launching wellness programs, and the majority of organizations currently offering wellness initiatives are looking to invest in and expand them. That’s according to the 2011 Willis Health and Productivity Survey by Willis North America’s Human Capital Practice in Atlanta, a unit of global insurance broker Willis Group Holdings, plc (NYSE: WSH). The national survey found 60 percent of respondents indicated they have some type of wellness program, an increase of 13 percent from 2010. Willis also found 58 percent of employers with wellness programs already in place say they plan to expand their wellness plans with added programs or resources. “Wellness programs continue to evolve and it is encouraging to see more organizations initiate programs despite economic pressures and continuing challenges in accurately measuring outcomes and results,” Jennifer C. Price, senior healthoutcomes consultant in the Willis Human Capital Practice, said in a news release. Additional key findings from the survey include:  Of those organizations with a wellness program, 40 percent reported they have an “intermediate” program in place. The survey defined that as having established a wellness budget and providing some incentives for participation, in ad-

May 4, 2012

Over half of survey respondents have some type of wellness program. Of those with wellness programs in place – most would describe their program as a “basic” or “intermediate” wellness program. Employers with 500 or more employees are more likely to have an “intermediate” or “advanced” wellness program.

Prevalence of Wellness Programs

Over half of survey respondents have some type of wellness program. Of those with wellness programs in place, most would describe their program as a “basic” or “intermediate” wellness program. Employers with 500 or more employees are more likely to have an PREVALENCE OF WELLNESS PROGRAMS “intermediate” or “advanced” wellness program.








Plan to offer one in the future


No current program


















dition to offering the voluntary wellness fecting health-care costs. Insufficient data activities of a basic plan. enough staffing/time are other TYPES OF WELLNESS PROGRAMSand – BYnotEMPLOYER SIZE  The most common types of wellness common barriers to measuring success. programs offered by survey respondents The survey included a subset of ques25% include: physical-activity programs (53 tions that also asked employers about A large employer percent), (1,000 tobacco-cessation programs (49 work/life balance programs.39% Findings reor more employees) percent), and weight-management pro- veal that 51 percent of respondents report36% grams (45 percent). ed promoting work/life balance initiatives  When asked about the leading barrier within their worksite-wellness program. to measuring success of their wellness iniThe survey found that helping employtiative, 43 percent of employers said it was 9%ees achieve work/life balance is a signifiA small employerthe influence cant concern of 18 percent of 40% the difficulty of determining respondents, or less employees) of wellness(1,000 compared with other factors af- and somewhat of a concern of 54 percent 50%

of respondents. Flexible start/end times are the most common offering of work/ life balance program options, reported by 81 percent of respondents. Willis said it conducted the survey for the global business market, gathering information from 1,598 employers throughout several different industries, locations, and organizational sizes. It said 57 percent of the respondents had fewer than 1,000 Comprehensive employees and 42 percent had fewer than 500 workers.Intermediate Willis conducted this survey through a web-based program.  Basic

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The Central New York Business Journal • 11

EBRI: Consumer-driven health-plan enrollees are healthier, wealthier BY JOURNAL STAFF


eople enrolled in “consumerdriven” health plans tend to have higher incomes, higher educational levels, and report better health behavior than do those enrolled in traditional health plans. But they are not younger. Those are just a few of the findings of a new report by the nonpartisan Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) that examines trends over the 2005–2011 period. Consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) generally consist of high-deductible health plans (HDHP) paired with a health-reimbursement arrangement (HRA) or a health savings account (HSA). As of 2011, about 21 million individuals, representing about 12 percent of the market, were enrolled in a CDHP or an HSA-eligible health plan. “Consumer-driven health plans are a growing presence in the health insurance market, so it’s important to understand how they differ from traditional health plans,” Paul Fronstin, author of the report and director of EBRI’s Health Research and Education Program, said in a news release. “It is often assumed that CDHP enrollees are more likely to be young than those with traditional coverage, because they use less health care, on

average. However, ees were more likely in most years, the than traditional-plan “Consumer-driven survey found that enrollees to report CDHP enrollees excellent or very health plans are a were less likely than good health. CDHP those with traditionenrollees were less growing presence in al coverage to be belikely to report that the health insurance tween the ages of 21 they smoke or did and 34.” market, so it’s important not exercise reguOther major findlarly, though it could ings in the EBRI to understand how they not be determined report, which examthe survey differ from traditional from ines the population whether plan design enrolled in a CDHP had an impact on health plans,” Paul and how it differs those self-reported Fronstin, author of the factors. from the population with traditional full report report and director of is The health coverage, inpublished in clude: EBRI’s Health Research the April 2012 Education: CDHP EBRI Notes, enrollees were and Education Program, “ C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s about twice as likely the Population said in a news release. of as individuals with With Consumertraditional coverage Driven and Highto have a college or Deductible Health post-graduate educaPlans, 2005–2011,” tion. In 2011, 24 percent of CDHP enroll- online at ees had a graduate degree and 48 percent EBRI says it’s a private, nonprofit rehad a college degree, compared with 12 search institute based in Washington, percent and 24 percent, respectively, of D.C., that focuses on health, savings, retraditional plan enrollees. tirement, and economic-security issues. Health: In six out of seven years of the EBRI says it does not lobby or take policy survey, EBRI found that CDHP enroll- positions. 


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Oswego surgeon moves to larger office suite BY JOURNAL STAFF

OSWEGO — Oswego Health Orthopedic Surgeon Shawn Mills, M.D., has moved his practice, Advanced Orthopedic Group, into a larger suite in the Oswego Health Services Center, located adjacent to Oswego Hospital. The new office (Suite 280) features four patient rooms and a spacious waiting area for patients, as well its own cast room. Along with his new office, Dr. Mills utilizMills es some of the newest orthopedic technology. Earlier this year, Oswego Hospital installed a state-of-the-art surgical navigation system. Dr. Mills joined the medical staff of Oswego Hospital last fall. He is an accomplished orthopedic surgeon, who is board-certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery. He offers surgical-management options for advanced arthritis with joint replacements and is also a long-standing proponent and practitioner of minimally invasive surgery procedures, the hospital says. 

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New York Optometric opens location in Armory Square BY MARIA CARBONARO JOURNAL STAFF

SYRACUSE — A new branch of an optometric business has opened at 85 Walton St. in the Armory Square district. Lou Enzerillo, owner of New York Optometric, opened his second location in Syracuse on April 16. Enzerillo’s first store is at 116 E. Washginton St. He is calling the stores New York Optometric Downtown and New York Optometric Armory Square, respectively. Enzerillo noted the reason he has launched another store, that is not much more than a five-minute walk from the first, has to do with the different areas of the city and different clients. “I want to bring new things to the Armory Square location that currently can’t be found in Central New York. New specialty frame lines such as Lindberg, Lafont, and Salt.optics are eyeglass frames that differ from the traditional eyeglass standards,” he says. The opportunity to lease the Walton Street location presented itself through a previous relationship with the building owner, Robert Ducette. Enzerillo signed the lease with Center Armory Associates LLC in December 2011. Terms of the lease were not disclosed. “We did extensive renovating to the new site,” says Enzerillo, “all new lighting, new flooring, new plumbing (added a sink in the exam room), new paint (including a feature

wall done by Jean Conte), and reworked the furniture/fixtures.” The cost of the renovations was not disclosed. Thus far, Enzerillo has hired one additional, full-time person, optician Lisa Giocondo, for the new location. Later, staffing with depend upon the ebb and flow of the business. For the present time, he’s keeping the scheduling of his current employees flexible. New York Optometric currently has three employees on East Washington Street, not including an optometrist who comes in two days a week, and one employee on Walton Street. Enzerillo will continue to spend the majority of his time on East Washington Street, but will keep his time flexible.  Contact Carbonaro at

REPORT: Companies’ participation is likely to grow Continued from page 8

and people that are patients or caregivers or people that may have questions about health care.” Social-media patterns can show what users do not understand about health care, according to Anderson. They can also reveal consumers’ biases and shed light on treatments that aren’t well known. So a health-care company that is paying attention to social-media patterns would know which consumer concerns need to be addressed, Anderson says. For their part, consumers are already using social media to view health-related information. The report found that 32 percent of consumers look at their family’s or friends’ health-care experiences on social media. Plus, 29 percent use the medium to learn about other patients’ experiences with diseases, and 24 percent view health-related videos or images posted by patients. Surveyed consumers indicated they are likely to trust information from certain medical sources on social media — 61 percent of consumers said they would trust information shared by doctors, and 55 percent said they would trust information from hospitals. Just 42 percent responded that they are likely to trust information from health insurers, and 37 percent said they are likely to trust information from drug companies. Health-care companies display varying levels of activity on social media. The report found that 41 percent of doctors and 39 percent of hospitals are likely to share information via the medium. Only 34 percent of health insurers and 28 percent of drug companies are likely to share information on social-media channels. Interviews show that companies’ participation is likely to grow in the future,

Anderson says. “Even the pharmaceutical manufacturers said, ‘This is too big of an opportunity for us to pass up,’ ” she says. “ ‘Our customers want to talk to us in this way, so we’ve got to find a way that is comfortable for our legal and regulatory teams as well as our external customers.’ ” Consumers indicated they would like to use social media for help with making doctor’s appointments. Nearly three quarters of survey respondents, 72 percent, said socialmedia services to help them know when appointments are available would be valuable. According to the survey 71 percent said appointment reminders would be helpful, and 70 percent said social-media referrals to specialists would be valuable. Speed is important when it comes to interacting with consumers over social media. Among survey respondents, 76 percent said a health-care company should respond within 24 hours when contacted through social media for an appointment request. Almost half, 49 percent, said companies should respond within a few hours, and 29 percent said companies should respond within one hour. The report found similar expectations for other types of social-media interaction, with 70 percent of respondents believing they should receive a response to a social-media request for information within a day. And 42 percent of respondents expect responses to information requests within a few hours, while 23 percent want responses within an hour. “You have to allocate the right resources based on the volume in order to be responsive,” Anderson says. “You have to have the same kind of customer exchange you’d have if you have a 24/7 call center.”  Contact Seltzer at

The Central New York Business Journal • 13

May 4, 2012

HEALTH-CARE PEOPLE-ON-THE-MOVE NEWS EXCELLUS BLUECROSS BLUESHIELD Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, Central New York’s largest health insurer, has promoted Thomas P. Tiernan to regional director of sales. Tiernan will oversee Excellus BlueCross BlueShield’s Tiernan mid-market segment sales, strategy, and retention in the company’s Central New York and Utica regions. Tiernan has been with Excellus BlueCross BlueShield for 12 years and most recently served as regional manager of sales for the Watertown market. Tiernan previously was an account executive with KeyBank Insurance in Watertown for two years. He also spent 16 years as a district agent and regional sales manager with Prudential Insurance, also in Watertown. Tiernan is a graduate of Herkimer County Community College.

FAMILYCARE MEDICAL GROUP PC Theresa Lipsky, M.D. has been named president of FamilyCare Medical Group PC (FCMG), a 65-physician, multi-specialty group practice in Central New York. Lipsky has been vice president of mediLipsky cal affairs at FCMG since 2007. She has been a partner since 1999. Lipsky earned

her bachelor’s degree in human service studies from Cornell University’s College of Human Ecology and her medical degree in 1992 from SUNY Health Science Center at Syracuse. Lipsky completed her familypractice residency at St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center in Syracuse.

MEDICAL MANAGEMENT RESOURCES Medical Management Resources, Inc., a medical billing and practice-management company located in Syracuse, has promoted the following employees. Lisa Nesci (multi-specialty department), Lucrettia Johnson, Michelle Leone, and Michelle Petrus (radiology department) have been promoted to unit leaders. Sarah Burns, Matthew Kelly, Carol Ann Perrigo, Kim Phillips (multi-specialty department), Jennifer Bell, Laurie Joslyn, and Elaine McLaughlin (radiology department) have been promoted to group leaders. Eric Dahlin has been promoted to director of the multi-specialty department, D’Arcy Chamberlin has been promoted to radiology department manager, Susan Stepien has been promoted to compliance specialist, and Ian Yazell has been promoted to network engineer.

NORTH MEDICAL North Medical has announced the addition of Mark Billinson, M.D., to The Women’s Place at the North Medical Center in Clay. Billinson is a board-certified physician of obstetrics and gynecology. He comes to The Women’s Place from a solo private practice in Syracuse, where he practiced

for 24 years after completing his residency at University Hospital. Billinson also was a clinical instructor at SUNY Upstate Medical University. With special interests in breast cancer, menopause and hormone replacement, Billinson speaks nationally on topics such as risk assessment and genetics testing for hereditary cancer syndromes. He is certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

ST JOSEPH’S HOSPITAL HEALTH CENTER St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center has appointed Mary Bishop as behavioral health service line administrator, a new position for St. Joseph’s. In this role, she will integrate all behavioral-health Bishop services. Most recently, Bishop served as executive director of the Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program, the only licensed psychiatric emergency room serving Onondaga and Madison counties. Prior to 2003, she worked in the for-profit as well as the nonprofit sector. During her tenure at Lifetime Health, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, Bishop was responsible for extensive primary and specialty-care service divisions. Bishop received her bachelor’s degree from Colgate University, a master’s degree from the University of Miami, and in 2007, completed an 18 month post-graduate fellowship in Healthcare Leadership

through The Community Health Foundation of Western and Central New York. The following individuals joined St. Joseph’s active medical staff: Justin B. Bertrand, M.D. (family medicine); Clarissa Del Rosario, M.D. (internal med/nephrology); Aran W. Laing, M.D. (internal medicine); Katherine J. Dunham, M.D. (pediatrics); Vanessa R. Gibson, M.D. (thoracic surgery); Peter P. Huntington, M.D. (internal med/cardiology); Carri A. Jones, M.D. (anesthesiology); and Christina M. Yambo, M.D. and Louis C. Rivera, M.D. (emergency). St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center has appointed Jeanette S. Angeloro director of outpatient behavioral health services. In this role, she will be responsible for the outpatient mental-health Angeloro programs throughout the St. Joseph’s system. Most recently, Angeloro was manager of adult services for St. Joseph’s outpatient behavioral health services. Prior to her management role, she served as a clinical social worker at St. Joseph’s. She is a psychotherapist in private practice. Angeloro holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., and a master’s degree in social work from Syracuse University. She is a licensed clinical social worker and certified by the State of New York as a social worker. Continued on the next page




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HEALTH-CARE PEOPLE-ON-THE-MOVE NEWS (continued) David T. OuYang, M.D. (family medicine) and Charles F. Scioscia, M.D. (internal medicine) have joined the active medical staff at St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center.

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BURDICK: Renovation costs totaled just under $2 million, according to Burdick year. His dealerships employ just under 500 people — 450 of which are full time, he says. The Driver’s Village campus also includes dealerships owned by several of Burdick’s relatives. His nephew, Kevin Burdick, owns Toyota, Lexus, and Scion dealerships. His niece, Kelly Burdick Pelcher, owns a BMW dealership. And his brother, Jonathan Burdick, and brother’s son, Dan Burdick, own a Hyundai dealership. Roger Burdick declined to share revenue totals and employment levels for the dealerships his relatives own.

Continued from page 1

terms of the volume of traffic, it’s a very strong location.” The proximity to major arterial roads helps Driver’s Village sell to the north toward Canada and south to Cortland, Burdick says. It also helps the company sell to drivers from Oswego, Fulton, Manlius, DeWitt, and Pompey, he adds. The Chevrolet dealership now shares space with Burdick’s Buick and GMC dealerships. Together, the three dealerships occupy about 50,000 square feet of space in a 450,000-square-foot building at Driver’s Village, although the Chevrolet dealership has its own showroom. Chevrolet, Buick, and GMC all have the same parent company, General Motors (NYSE: GM). Therefore, it makes sense for the dealerships to share backroom space, Burdick says. “Our parts inventories are combined,” he says. “There’s some duplication that will weed itself out.” Burdick moved the Chevrolet dealership about a year after he purchased it. He acquired the dealership and its former facility on Old Liverpool Road in March of 2011. The dealership, which had been owned by Jeffrey Crouse, used to be named Bresee Chevrolet. Burdick declined to disclose the exact financial terms of the acquisition, but says Driver’s Village invested more than $6 million of its own cash in the deal. The company did not use a broker for the purchase, he says.


Burdick’s Buick and GMC dealerships were located at the Driver’s Village campus before the Chevrolet dealership moved there, according to Burdick. The combined dealership space has been renovated to match new General Motors image standards, he says. “Our Chevrolet, Buick, and GMC dealerships are all state-ofthe-art design,” Burdick says. Renovation costs totaled just

Old Liverpool Road facility


Roger Burdick, owner of Driver’s Village in Cicero in his office. The dealership, which had been owned by Jeffrey Crouse, used to be named Bresee Chevrolet. under $2 million, according to Burdick. Driver’s Village used its own employees to complete the work and its own cash to fund it, he adds. General Motors hired the global architecture, design, planning, and consulting firm Gensler to handle the design. Renovation costs include work on both the 450,000-square-foot building where the Chevrolet dealership now resides and a 90,000-squarefoot building located to that facility’s north. That’s because Driver’s Village needed to move some of its operations out of the 450,000-squarefoot building to make room for the Chevrolet dealership. The operations that moved include Burdick’s Suzuki franchise, used-car warehouse, and used-car conditioning center, he says. Crews started renovating the 90,000-square-foot building, which had been vacant, in April 2011. They wrapped up work in the late summer of 2011, which is when the dealership and used-

car operations moved. Then, renovations started on the future Chevrolet dealership space in the larger building. A holding company Burdick owns — called RLB Development, LLC — owns both the 450,000-square-foot building and the 90,000-square-foot structure. RLB leases the buildings to Driver’s Village. Burdick Chevrolet’s new space is smaller than its former location on Old Liverpool Road, which was an 80,000-square-foot facility, according to Burdick. “That was built in 1966,” he says. “In 1966 we didn’t have Japanese imports, we didn’t have Korean imports. General Motors had 50 percent of the market, and Chevrolet was the bulk of that. We may never reach those kinds of numbers again.” GM currently has about an 18 percent share of the U.S. car market. Burdick’s combined Chevrolet, Buick, and GMC dealerships have

85 employees. When Burdick purchased the Chevrolet dealership, it had 75 workers. It lost about 10 employees since its purchase, Burdick says. Driver’s Village sent employees to Old Liverpool Road to replace workers who left, he adds. “We supplemented the people who left with employees that were ready for promotion here,” he says. “And they’re all together now.” The Chevrolet dealership currently has about 350 vehicles in stock and $1.3 million worth of parts, according to Burdick. The number of vehicles will vary seasonally and could drop to as low as 175 in the winter, he says. Burdick also owns Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, Volkswagen, Porsche, Audi, Lincoln, Mazda, and Kia dealerships at the Driver’s Village complex. His dealerships total about $300 million in annual sales, and he predicts revenue will grow by 8 percent to 10 percent this

Roger Burdick is attempting to sell his Chevrolet dealership’s former facility on Old Liverpool Road. He is in the process of completing negotiations with a buyer, he says. “The building is empty and cleaned and ready to deliver,” he says. “We’re working through some technical details. If that all gets ironed out, we could actually consummate that deal very quickly.” Burdick declined to name the potential buyer because negotiations are not complete. The deal could close as early as the end of May, he says. Joshua Podkaminer of Syracuse–based Emhof f Associates, LLC is Burdick’s broker for the building. The facility and land it is on were assessed at $1.6 million in 2011, according to records from the Onondaga County Office of Real Property Tax Services. Burdick paid $2.2 million for the building and land in March 2011, according to the records. The potential sale comes after the town of Salina considered purchasing the facility in late 2011 for use as a town hall and a highway garage. The possibility of that sale died in the fall, when voters struck down a ballot initiative that would have approved the purchase.  Contact Seltzer at

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The Central New York Business Journal • 17

May 4, 2012

ANAREN: A decline in demand for some of the


company’s wireless products drove the sales dip


SYRACUSE — Crouse Hospital has been designated a colorectal robotic Epicenter by Intuitive Surgical, maker of the da Vinci robotic surgical system. As an official Epicenter training site, colorectal surgeons from across the nation will visit Crouse Hospital monthly to observe and learn from colorectal surgeons John Nicholson, M.D., and David Nesbitt, M.D., who use the da Vinci technology for colon and rectal surgery. Both are partners in Colon-Rectal Associates of CNY. Crouse Hospital says it performs the largest number of robotic procedures in Syracuse. It has two da Vinci surgical systems, and is one of just a few colorectal Epicenters in the U.S. and the only designated center in New York State. 

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ing satellite communications, defense, and wireless communications. Profit in Anaren’s fiscal third quarter, which ended March 31, totaled $2 million, or 14 cents a share, down more than 41 percent from the same period a year earlier. Net sales dropped more than 21 percent to $34.7 million. A decline in demand for some of the company’s wireless products drove the sales dip, Anaren Chairman, President, and CEO Lawrence Sala said during the conference call. Sales in the firm’s wireless business totaled $10.2 million in the fiscal third quarter, down more than 32 percent from a year earlier. Company leaders believe the dip in wireless sales is temporary. Customer forecasts are showing strength and wireless sales should increase during Anaren’s fiscal fourth quarter, Sala said. Sales in the company’s space and defense business totaled $24.5 million for the quarter, down 15.1 percent. The dip resulted mainly from a decline of $2.8 million in sales related to Anaren’s work on a subsystem for a product developed by Cicero–based SRC, Inc. that disables improvised explosive devices (IED). Some new radar-contracts customers should give Anaren a boost in the coming months, Sala said. The firm expects $15 million to $17 million in new radarrelated orders as a result, he said. That should help total space and defense sales should recover in the company’s fourth quarter, he added. Also, Anaren announced three contracts on April 9 totaling $11.5 million for subsystems used in airborne applications. The orders are part of a long-term supply agreement with a defense contractor for domestic

and international applications of Anaren’s proprietary electronic warfare technology. Deliveries will begin in the fiscal first quarter of 2013 and take place over 26 months, the company said. For Anaren’s fiscal fourth quarter, ending June 30, net sales should reach $35 million to $40 million with earnings per share of 11 cents to 23 cents, Sala said. 


Continued from page 1

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PARTNER: The group is launching a series of Cuse Mobs to support local businesses Continued from page 1

T:15 in

buying local, will now have access to a dual membership in both organizations. SyracuseFirst has 220 members, including local companies and nonprofits. The organization will maintain its own identity and Chris Fowler will continue as executive director. One of the chief goals of the partnership will be to bring local companies together to do business with each other, says Jane from the inside out.president Add our Amico, CenterState CEO vice of chamber services. The more connections

fe’s work. ry angle.

and relationships the groups can foster among Central New York businesses, the better, she says. Both organizations hold numerous networking events and combining resources makes sense, Fowler adds. “Here we are, trying to get the same people involved,” he says. “Why not try to get all these people together and coordinate?” Working with CenterState will allow for more education and promotion in the business community on SyracuseFirst’s events ex andpert, other initiatives, Amico notes. “We want to build on the events we’ve

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says. The group has run events in the past like a Buy Local Bash that brought together local restaurants, food companies, musicians, and others. The event drew more than 500 people both times it was held, Fowler says. The group also ran a Shop Syracuse Week during the holiday season for the past two years to encourage consumers to shop at local stores. The group is launching a series of Cuse Mobs to support local businesses and educate consumers on the benefits of buying local, Fowler says. Known as cash mobs in other cities, the events began popping up last year, according to Syracuse First. Organizers encouraged participants to ‘mob’ local companies and asked them to spend some cash at a pre-determined location. SyracuseFirst is organizing a Syracuse version of the event through social media and on the group’s website at CenterState CEO, with 2,000 members, is the region’s main business group. q Contact Tampone at

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The Central New York Business Journal • 19

May 4, 2012

Startups That Shoot From the Hip, End Up Shooting Off Their Own Foot


  ave you ever wondered how many   times you have tried to do some  thing half-way, only to discover that it would have been easier if done the right way from the very beginning? My daughter hates to read instructions. She will build a model or assemble a new toy by “intuition.” Sometimes she goes forward one step and back two throughout the entire building process. Sometimes, she spends hours with no glitch until she gets to the end and has to take the entire VIEWPOINT project apart because she made one mistake early on. I can’t tell you how many times she has done this. Her particular affliction might be laziness, pride, or maybe she just likes the challenge and discovery of it all. On the other hand, I am guilty of doing similar things due to being cheap. When I was 23 and bought my first house, I decided I would shovel the driveway instead of paying to have it plowed. A slipped disc and many blisters later, I learned that was not the most efficient choice. Later, I would build things instead of buying them. Each one ended up costing twice the money and 10 times as much time, along with the added insult (and monetary pain) of having to eventually buy the thing anyway. The Small Business Administration (SBA) has done multiple studies that say approximately half of new businesses fail. I have also read dozens of top 10 lists outlining the reasons that new businesses fail. Every single item on those lists traces back to poor planning and preparation. Like me and my daughter, entrepreneurs jump into their startup idea and just start doing. Some do it because they are too lazy to plan and it’s just more fun to start shooting. Others know they have to plan but don’t know how to do it and are too cheap or broke to pay someone to help them. In a recent poll I distributed, 50 percent of the respondents said shooting from the hip cost them between $10,000 and $20,000, and some even more. Most entrepreneurs go forward before thoroughly assessing their startup idea. How much has shooting from the hip cost them? Most likely it’s tens of thousands of dollars. OK, so what do you do if you’re planning to launch a business? Everyone always talks about “the business plan,” which is fine, as long as there actually is one. There are people you can hire to do a generic plan, software, templates, and millions of articles and advice. But the real value of a business plan is not the pretty spiral-bound report at the end. Sure, that is what you need to get a loan. But for purposes of really understanding your business and possibly gaining a venturecapital investment, the finished product is of little value. It’s the process of doing the plan that provides the value. The only way to truly prepare to start a business correctly is to have a professional walk you through a feasibility study (psychographics, SWOT, competition, etc.) and force you to answer all the tough questions about your business. The questions you can’t answer are the most valuable. They will force you to do research and engage in the dreaded “gut

eric egeland

check” where you are faced with a negative you didn’t want to know existed. These are the questions that make you work harder and which raise the self-doubt needed to really give you an intimate understanding of your business and all the outside influences. You will know the six different things that can happen, the odds of each happening, and what to do for every one of them. You will be prepared for the things that pop up instead of being surprised. You will be calm and in control, instead of twisting your guts every night worrying. You will have the next closest

thing to a crystal ball for your startup. Your funding package will be as bullet-proof as possible. You will be empowered in knowing exactly what to do and why you should do it. That is the power.

Efficiency and value

What the SBA studies don’t tell you about the failed businesses is that those entrepreneurs are typically destroyed both emotionally and financially with no insurance and a huge pile of debt. Our studies show that most waste between $20,000 and $40,000, plus months to years of wasted

time “shooting from the hip” before they ultimately fail. I had an interesting “debate” with a 40time serial entrepreneur on LinkedIn last week. He responded in disagreement with my initial posting about how bad it is to shoot from the hip. To summarize our lengthy chat, he was basically saying that taking the whim and chance out of startups is both unrealistic and stifling to creativity and enthusiasm. He saw the process I described above as a bureaucratic waste of time. See egeland, page 20

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Continued from page 19

I always say most fights and divorces are caused by misunderstandings. I clarified that my intent was not to stifle anything. A good feasibility study and business plan simply help entrepreneurs who don’t have the experience of someone who has done it 40 times, as my new friend had. Most importantly, if the “doing” process is done in an educational way, the entrepreneurs emerge prepared for battle. They are trained to swat down objections with wellthought-out and articulate answers. Even if they get an objection they haven’t specifically trained for, their basic training kicks in and they are able to defend their business. If these studies can prevent entrepreneurs from making one mistake without losing the lesson that mistake has taught them, then they have improved their chances, been better educated, and saved money. And ultimately, that’s the goal.  Eric Egeland is president of Capacity Consulting Inc., based in Sullivan County. He provides strategic consulting for multiple industries and has personally created 10 successful startups. Contact him at ericegeland@

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Volume 26, No. 18 - May 4, 2012 NEWS Editor-in-Chief........................Adam Rombel Assistant Editor..............Maria J. Carbonaro Staff Writers........................... Kevin Tampone (Online Editor) ..............................................................Rick Seltzer ............................................................Traci DeLore Columnists....................................Tom Morgan Production Manager.......................Erin Zehr Research Manager.................. Nicole Collins SALES Sr. Account Managers....................................... Bernard B. Bregman Mary LaMacchia Marketing .......................BBB Marketing Inc. CIRCULATION Circulation Management....(315) 579-3927


We Have Gotten Awfully Regal M

  aybe it’s my imagination, but   we seem to have gotten awfully   regal in this country. That’s what came to mind when I heard about the kafuffle over our Secretary of Defense. Leon Panetta has been flying home to California most weekends — on Air Force jets — costing taxpayers $32,000 per round trip. The Defense Department says White House guys agreed to this when they hired him. “No, we didn’t!” the White House guys cry. You can imagine that nobody wants to admit to the deal. Panetta says he morgan just wants to visit his at large ranch and wife and family. Right. Here is a suggestion, Leon. If you want the job in Washington, how about you move your family to that area? And if you don’t want to do that, then pay for your own travel. If you tell us you sacrifice the big bucks to take the low-paying secretary’s job, we agree. You do. So sacrifice, already. If you don’t want to sacrifice, take the big job in business and make millions. And don’t

tom morgan

Administrative Publisher..........................Norman Poltenson Chief Operating Officer......Marny Nesher Business Manager.....................Kurt Bramer

The Central New York Business Journal (ISSN #1050-3005) is published every week by CNY Business Review, Inc. All contents copyrighted 2012. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Cover Price $2 Subscription Rate $88 per year Call (800) 836-3539

HOW TO REACH US MAIL: Send letters to: Editor, The Central New York Business Journal 269 W. Jefferson St. Syracuse, N.Y. 13202-1230 E-MAIL: PHONE: (315) 472-3104


try to make us feel sorry for you for your low pay in government. You will sign book deals worth millions when you retire. And groups will pay you $30,000 to deliver glib speeches. And you already get a lot of perks that kings would envy. Royal treatment is in vogue in Washington. As you know from reports of the Las Vegas bash by bigwigs from the General Services Administration. The top guys may go to jail for their theft from taxpayers. But do you really believe this is an isolated instance? And do you really believe this is the end of such gouging of taxpayers by top guys in government? Seems to me that we could do with less of the royal treatment. From the president down. A few years ago, I saw the president drive down a Manhattan street — with 37 cars and a handful of motorcycles. Yes, 37 cars. But wait. He also had helicopters whap-whapping overhead. And thousands of city cops who barricaded all the intersections, stopped all the cross-traffic for miles. Backed up tens of thousands of cars. All for the president’s visit. His limo-tanks were flown in, of course. Hundreds (at least) of Secret Service guys scoped out the route and building tops and manholes in advance. The other armored cars carried an army of security guys and tons of guns. When the president visits a

small country, his entourage is bigger than its army. He could step out of his limo and declare we had successfully invaded and were taking over. A simple trip to New York City costs several million bucks. That seems outrageous to me. I know, I know, we must protect him. And he might have to launch nuclear weapons at any moment. But it seems a bit over the top. The Brits and French send their leaders overseas without all this regal stuff. And those countries have nuclear weapons at the ready, just like us. It might be nice once in a while to fake everybody out. Tell the world the president has gone to Camp David. Meanwhile, tuck him into a beat-up taxi for his trip to some dinner. He would be safe because nobody would know about it. It would be good for him to experience what ordinary mortals do. (“Uhh, driver… is this what they call a traffic jam? I think I’ve read about those.”) And it would save us millions of bucks per trip. Mind you, those New York City taxis can be pretty pricey. q From in Morgan. Tom Morgan writes about financial and other subjects from his home near Oneonta, in addition to his radio shows and new TV show. For more information about him, visit his website at

Our Region Takes a High-Risk Approach to Investing

  ould you take the advice of a   financial advisor who told you   to invest in only two or three industries? The answer is — of course not. Most individuals, corporations and institutional investors realize the value of diversity within a portfolio. Yet, as a region, we seem to ignore this principle. The good news is that we are seeing investment and expansion take place. According to a recent reVIEWPOINT port in The Central New York Business Journal [March 9, 2012 CNY Construction Projects Special Report], there are more than 60 sizable construction projects throughout the area. No doubt, this is a notable indicator of growth. But before jumping for joy, we need to look at the composition of this growth. Threequarters of these projects are being built for institutions of higher learning, health-care facilities, governmental agencies, and various not-for-profit organizations. The remaining 25 percent is comprised of companies trying to generate a profit. This is not merely a snapshot. The 2011 edition of this report revealed a virtually identical breakdown. Employment and jobgrowth statistics further corroborate this trend. The fact that universities and health-care institutions are expanding should be of little surprise as “Eds and Meds” have long been seen as the shining sectors for our region. Yet, it is worth examining why these sectors are booming while so many other segments

david h. panasci

are lagging. Are organizations in these segments of the economy better run and more solid financially? Or perhaps, based on market demand and demographics, these are the sectors that should be growing. Still, even if these assumptions are true, other factors need to be considered. Those of us who operate businesses in New York State realize how hostile the environment can be for conducting business. Let’s be honest, our region’s de-facto investment policy is driven by a broad range of oppressive taxes that have a chilling effect on business growth. The 75 percent of the expansion projects, as mentioned above, were mostly being built for and funded by notfor-profit institutions. Of course, the notion that organizations with lesser tax burdens are better positioned for growth is hardly a revelation. Make no mistake, I am not criticizing these components of our economy. I believe wholeheartedly that the health-care institutions along with the universities and colleges make a positive and significant impact on the quality of life within the region. They not only bring first rate-services to the populace, but also attract highly qualified professionals, provide good-paying jobs and add to the magnetism of the community. The risk lies, however, in having a business community within a concentrated portfolio of industries. Being too heavily weighted in a narrow range of business sectors can be a formula for disaster — think of Detroit. As with personal investments, a diversified portfolio of economic engines will best create

further opportunity for growth while mitigating the risks of an economy concentrated in too few industries. Without a measurable change in New York State’s prohibitive tax and business policies, we will continue down this path. Last spring, Governor Cuomo said that businesses were leaving the state because of real-estate taxes being too high. He responded by putting forth a cap on property taxes. This is not a solution. Limiting increases on taxes that are admittedly too high does not solve the problem. It is akin to having the homeowner whose house is engulfed in flames being told by the fire chief that the blaze will not get much worse. That is not enough — you have to put out the fire. The other mistake the governor has made is the assumption that the problem comes solely from property taxes. The frosty business environment in New York stems from the total tax burden on business combined with workers’-compensation costs, funding public employee pensions at unsustainable levels, and an array of rules, regulations, and fees. It is time for the governor and the state legislature to recognize the need for having a nurturing environment for all types of businesses. Creating an environment that fosters job growth across many sectors will produce a well-rounded and robust economy providing job security for all in the tax base. That’s q a risk we can live with. David H. Panasci is president of DHP Consulting, LLC in Camillus. Visit his website at


• The Central New York Business Journal

May 4, 2012

may 8 n Ready, Set Go! professional-development workshop from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at SUNY Oswego Metro Center, 2 Clinton Square in Syracuse. You’ve made up your mind: you’re going to adopt a “healthier lifestyle.” But where should you start? Kim Thompson, owner of Healthy Transformations, will work with participants to develop a plan of action. The cost is $99 and includes lunch. For more information, call (315) 399-4100 or visit

May 10 n MACNY’s 99th Annual Dinner at the Oncenter in Syracuse. Visit for details and reservation information as they become available. n Winning Marketing Strategies: Promoting Your Business workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. at Liverpool Library, 310 Tulip St., Liverpool. This free workshop discusses what promotional options are available to you and what will work best for your business. To register, email Regina Drumm at regina.drumm@ n Best Practice: Live Case Studies of Wireless Implementation program from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at The Tech Garden, 235 Harrison St., Syracuse. Panelists will describe live implementations of mobile devices to satisfy business needs, what platforms they evaluated, the device and platform they chose, and why. For more information or to register, visit www.

May 11 n Women TIES Growth Seminar “You Can’t Grow Your Business – Without Growing Your Revenue” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Craftsman Inn, Mission B Room, 7300 Genesee St., Fayetteville. The featured speaker will be Lynn Hidy, president of The cost is $45. Reservations due by May 9. For details or reservations, visit

May 15 n Liverpool Chamber of Commerce Monthly Luncheon at 11:30 a.m. at Quaker Steak and Lube at 3535 Walters Road in Van Buren. The cost is $12 with payment in advance, $14 at the door. Guests are welcome. Require RSVP at

May 16 n A Time to Build from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Holiday Inn in Liverpool. This is a recognition program to honor construction projects and partners that reflect excellence in craft and quality. For more information, visit www. n CNY ASTD Social Media Community Discussion Group at the SUNY Center for Professional Development, 6333 Route 298, Suite 102, East Syracuse. For details, call (315) 546-2783 or email: n HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zone) Program from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. at WISE Women’s Business Center at SSIC, 2610 S. Salina St., Syracuse. The event is hosted by the U.S. Small Business Administration for small businesses to learn how the program works and can increase federal government contracting opportunities. The event is free and open to the public. For additional information, please visit To register, contact the SBA at (315) 471-9393.

May 17 n Introduction and Demonstration of Harrison Assessment Talent Solutions Breakfast Briefing from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at Pathfinders CTS, Inc. offices, 135 Old Cove

Business Calendar


Road, Suite 204, Liverpool. This is a comprehensive web-based tool for employee screening, selection, career and leadership development. There is no fee to attend. To register, visit n A Winning Sales Process seminar from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at CenterState CEO, 572 S. Salina St., Syracuse. For more information or to register, call (315) 470-1997, or visit www.

May 22 n 2012 CCMR Annual Symposium – NextGeneration Materials Characterization from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. will take place at the 120 Physical Sciences Building, Cornell University, Ithaca. For details and registration information, visit n Women TIES Northern New York Luncheon “Understanding the Sales Cycle” from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at SUNY Canton, Roos House, Mezzanine Level, 34 Cornell Drive. Sponsored by SUNY Canton SBDC, the featured speaker will be Lynn Hidy, president of The cost is $29. Reservations are due by May 20. For details or reservations, visit

May 23 n Liverpool Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours event from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at AMF Strike and Spare, Mattydale. The topic will be “Health Wellness, Fitness and Beauty Focus.” No cost to attend. For details, visit

May 24 n CPLP Information Session from noon to 1 p.m. at CenterState CEO headquarters, 572 S. Salina St., Syracuse. CNY ASTD will hold an informational session on the certified professional in learning & performance credential. For more information, call (315) 546-2783 or email:

May 29 n Getting Organized: Organize Your Work Space in 6 Steps workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. at Southside Innovation Center, 2610 S. Salina St., Syracuse. This free workshop discusses how to organize your workspace in six easy steps and create four operating zones. To register, email Regina Drumm at regina.drumm@

May 30 n Social Media, Marketing, and Technology Meet to Grow Your Business discussion from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at The Tech Garden, 235 Harrison St., Syracuse. The event will examine the benefits of social-media platforms and marketing for business and how various technologies can help. For more information or to register, call (315) 470-1997, or visit www.

May 31 n Maximize Your CenterState CEO Membership meeting from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.

at CenterStateCEO, 572 S. Salina St., Syracuse. Meet the CenterState CEO staff, connect with other members, promote your business, learn about educational opportunities, obtain information on programs and seminars, and sign up for committee participation. No cost to attend. Reservations are requested by calling (315) 470-1997, or visiting www.

June 7 n Credit Building for Entrepreneurs workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Southwest Economic Business Resource Center, 119 W. Onondaga St., Syracuse. This free workshop assists entrepreneurs with reviewing their credit scores and the understanding implications for them and their business. To register, email Regina Drumm at regina.drumm@ n CenterState CEO Business Before Hours event from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at the CNY Fertility Center, 195 Intrepid Lane, Syracuse. Contact Lisa Metot at (315) 470-1870 or email: lmetot@ for additional information. n CNY BEST Learning and Performance Awards Ceremony at 5:30 p.m. at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Syracuse, 6301 Route 298, East Syracuse. This is the fifth annual recognition of excellence in learning and performance practices in the CNY area. The cost is $65. For details or reservations, call (315) 546-2783 or email:

june 12 n Build a Business: How to Turn Your Ideas into Realities workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Southwest Economic Business Resource Center, 119 W. Onondaga St., Syracuse. This free workshop assists entrepreneurs with developing ideas into feasible businesses. To register, email Regina Drumm at regina.drumm@

june 14 n CNY ASTD Member Orientation from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at Sandler Training/DB&B Peak Performance Management, 443 N. Franklin St., Suite 100, Syracuse. This is a discussion on why and how to make the most of membership in CNY ASTD. No cost to attend. Register at or for more information, call (315) 546-2783 or email:

june 19 n Liverpool Chamber of Commerce Monthly Luncheon combined with Baldwinsville Picnic at 11:30 a.m. at the Elks Lodge, located on Route 370, near Hayes Road. The cost is $12 in advance, $14 at the door. Guests are welcome. RSVP required; visit

june 20 n Opportunities for Minority and Women Entrepreneurs workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Assisi Center, 800 N. Salina St., Syracuse. This free workshop assists minority and women entrepreneurs with what programs and resources are available to them in pursu-

ing their entrepreneurial endeavors. To register, email Regina Drumm at regina.drumm@

june 27 n Financial Executive of the Year 2012 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Nicholas J. Pirro Convention Center, Syracuse. The Financial Executive of the Year awards are given to financial professionals in Central New York, the Mohawk Valley, and Greater Binghamton for outstanding performance in their roles as corporate financial stewards. The cost is $55, but there is no charge for the finalists. For nomination and registration details, visit

ONGOING EVENTS n Every Tuesday, Cayuga Club Toastmasters from 6 to 7 p.m. at Cornell University, Ithaca, Rhodes Hall, 6th Floor, Conference Room #655. Free and easy parking is available nearby at Peterson Lot. For more information, contact Julia Reich, (315) 3647190 or email: n Every Tuesday, Gung Ho Networking Group from noon to 1:30 p.m. at Ruby Tuesday Restaurant, 3220 Erie Blvd E., DeWitt. Possible referrals for you; this is not a tip club. First visit free. Contact Paul Ellis at (315) 6770015 or visit n Every Wednesday, Syracuse Business Networking from 6 to 7 p.m. at Barbieri’s Restaurant (upstairs level) located on Main Street in the village of North Syracuse. For more information, call Kim Bachstein at (315) 414-8223 or email: info@ n First Wednesday of each month, Business Innovation Days meetings from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at The Tech Garden, 235 Harrison St., Syracuse. Entrepreneurs and small businesses can meet one-on-one with a counselor from the SBDC for advice and customized assistance opportunities. Scheduled by appointment, call (315) 474-0910 or email: info@ n Second Wednesday of every month, Salt City Technical offers by appointment free consultation to entrepreneurs or inventors who would like to have their product ideas evaluated by a staff of trained engineers. For more information or to schedule a consultation, call (315) 456-8461, or visit n Every Thursday, Empire Statesmen Toastmasters meet at 6:30 p.m. at Ruby Tuesday on Erie Boulevard in DeWitt. For more information, visit http://estm.freetoasthost. info or email: president@estm.freetoasthost. info n Every first and third Thursday each month, Liverpool Linguists from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Liverpool First Methodist Church, 604 Oswego Road, Liverpool. For details, visit or call (315) 884-2668 or 457-2581. n Every second and fourth Thursday of the month, The North Star Toastmasters from noon to 1 p.m. at C&S Companies, 499 Col. Eileen Collins Blvd., near Hancock Airport. For more information, contact Sandy Jurkiewicz at or call (315) 470-1802. n Every Friday, 40 Above: Workers in Transition from 9 to 11 a.m. at The Westcott Community Center, 817 Euclid Ave., Syracuse. Helping workers/job seekers aged 40 and above in search for work. Contact John A. Cruty at (315) 569-3964, or at crutij@yahoo. com Continued on the next page

The Central New York Business Journal • 23

May 4, 2012

PEOPLE ON THE MOVE: new hires & promotions CONSTRUCTION VIP Structures, Inc. has added Jeffrey S. Indivero to its staff. Indivero joins VIP as a project manager, bringing with him more than 14 years construction experience with companies such as New Indivero Jersey–based Panattoni Construction and Hunt Construction Group. His experience includes educational, civic, manufacturing, and recreational projects with budgets of up to $85 million.

FINANCIAL SERVICES Clinton Kane has joined Strategic Financial Ser vices as an associate in the corporate retirement plan group. Kane comes to Strategic after seven years with CoughlinGiambrone, Kane where he earned his FINRA series 7, 63, and 66 licenses, registered para planner designation, and certified fund specialist designation. Kane is a 2007 graduate of SUNYIT, where he received a bachelor’s degree in busiLeist ness administration. Michael Leist has joined Strategic Financial Services to lead business development and marketing efforts. Prior to joining the firm, Leist was an associate and member of the investment team at Monument Group, a Boston–based firm specializing in the marketing and placement of alternative-investment opportunities. Kane

is a graduate of Tufts University, where he received his bachelor’s degree in economics. He holds series 7 and 63 securities licenses.

LAW The Honorable George H. Lowe will again be a resident in Bond Schoeneck & King’s litigation department, concentrating his practice on white-collar criminal defense and complex federal civil litigation. He will also offer skills he developed on the bench to serve as a mediator and arbitrator. In addition, Judge Lowe will continue his leadership role in pro-bono matters and other service to the Bar. Judge Lowe recently served as a U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Northern District of New York since February 2004. Before taking the bench, Judge Lowe had been a partner at Bond, concentrating his practice on white-collar defense work and federal-court litigation for 21 years. Prior to joining Bond, Judge Lowe served as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of New York and had a lengthy career as a federal prosecutor. While in practice, Judge Lowe received numerous honors for his service in pro-bono cases and is currently co-chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Committee on Access to Justice. In 2007, he received the Onondaga County Bar Association’s Distinguished Lawyer Award. Judge Lowe is a graduate of Williams College and the Columbia University School of Law. Martin A. Lynn has joined Lynn Law Firm, LLP, headquartered in Syracuse, as an associate. Lynn will focus his practice primarily on negligence claims for personal injury and property damLynn ages, insurance-policy litigation, and product liability as well as commercial litigation. Prior to joining the Lynn Law Firm, LLP, Lynn was an attorney at Gilberti Stinziano Heintz & Smith, P.C. Lynn is a graduate of

the St. John’s University School of Law and College of the Holy Cross and is admitted to practice in New York and before the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern, Southern, and Northern Districts of New York. Lynn is the son of William F. Lynn, managing partner of Lynn Law Firm, LLP.

MANUFACTURING Alina Osbahr is The Eraser Company’s new sales and marketing assistant. She will help oversee press releases, print/web advertising, public relations, samples, customer surveys, trade shows, and Osbahr the newly redesigned Eraser website. Osbahr most recently worked as a freelance website/graphic designer in Syracuse. Osbahr received her bachelor’s degree from SUNY Cortland in advertising and public relations with a minor in website design. She earned her master’s degree in brand advertising from Full Sail University. Osbahr brings with her more than four years experience in the marketing and graphic fields.

NONPROFITS Prudence York has been appointed executive director of Enable. She holds a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling from Syracuse University. York has been employed by Enable since 1986, most recently as director of community services. Mary DiBiase has been named director of community services. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology from SUNY Buffalo. DiBiase has been employed by Enable since 1990, most recently as assistant director of community services. Daphne Washburn has been promoted to assistant director of community services. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from SUNY







Brockport. Washburn has been employed by Enable since 1998, most recently as program coordinator of certified residential services. Michelle McNitt has been named program manager of Medicaid service coordination. She holds a bachelor’s degree in health-services management from SUNYIT Utica/Rome. McNitt has been with Enable since 2008, most recently as a program manager of certified residential services. Julie Poplaski has been promoted to a program manager of certified residential services. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Binghamton University. Poplaski has been employed by Enable since 2009, most recently as an evening shift supervisor in the same department. Matt Seubert has been hired as development director. He is a graduate of SUNY Oswego and has more than 12 years fundraising experience. q

business calendar (continued) n Every Friday, Tip Club of Syracuse, at the Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel, 801 University Ave., Syracuse, 8 to 9 a.m. Call Bernie Bregman at (315) 472-3104, ext. 103 or email: n First Friday of each month, Toolkit Day with SCORE by appointment at The Tech Garden. Counselors provide free, confidential, individual business mentoring to prospective or current busi-

ness owners. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Lynn Hughes at (315) 5792862 or email n Every second and fourth Friday of each month, The SUN Group (Sustainable Upstate Network) meets from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at Tony’s Family Restaurant, 3004 Burnet Ave., Syracuse. For more information, contact Andy Picco at (315) 657-0135

or email: n Every week, Syracuse Networking Professionals. Five meetings to choose from. For details, call Kevin M. Crook at (315) 4391803, or email or visit n CNY Connects is a networking organization of-

fering 12 groups from which to choose. If you are interested in learning more, contact Amy Kaschel of AK Consulting at or call (315) 882-6127 or visit To have your meetings or events the Business Calendar, email them

in to

Briggs Hall: TN Custom Homes employs four people full time Continued from page 2

cause the value of their property increases,” he explains. Niederhofer saw this advancement potential for the community after the Center for the Arts of Homer was established in 2001. According to the mission statement on its website,, the center hopes “to enhance the quality of life for the people of Central New York by engaging them in a broad offering of arts education and entertainment that preserves and enriches the local culture, and provides stewardship for a

historically significant site.” Niederhofer sees this positive organization as the beginning of Homer’s success. He marks this as evidence that businesses can thrive in the community. Niederhofer was a board member for three years, then vice chair for two years, and chair for his sixth year of involvement with the nonprofit. According to Niederhofer, “After two consecutive three-year terms, you have to leave the board.” He is now back as a board member.

Niederhofer’s background

Tom Niederhofer is from the Homer area, where his family has been involved in the community for many years. Tom grew up watching his father and grandfather build homes and remodel previously owned buildings. According to the TN Custom Homes business plan for 19 and 21 N. Main Street, “For over 70 years, starting with Tom’s grandfather, Niederhofers have built hundreds of homes in Central New York, which have increased in value many times their original investment.” Tom started building homes with his

family following his high-school graduation. While in Erie, Pa., Tom and his older brother started up a homebuilding business, Colonial Contracting, which grew into the largest exterior remodeling business in Erie. Tom then moved back to his hometown and is now the owner and sole proprietor of TN Custom Homes on Water Street in Homer. TN Custom Homes employs four people full time. Niederhofer declined to disclose annual revenue. q Contact The Business Journal at



• The Central New York Business Journal

May 4, 2012

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