People & Businesses: 01-12-23

People & Businesses in the News

January 12, 2023
A BUNDLE OF JOY: Born at Bassett Hospital in Cooperstown on December 13, Alara Yasmine Jean Imtiaz—at 6 pounds 10 ounces and 20 inches—was welcomed by parents Ariel and Farhan Imtiaz of South Kortright, siblings Ayaan, Faris, and Aidin, and grandparents Mehmooda Yasmin Imtiaz and Marianna and Michael Costakis of Long Island. (Photo provided)

SOUTH FINGER LAKE SCHOLARS: Two students from Worcester—Maya Powers and Willow Tompkins—were named to the Dean’s List for Academic Achievement for this fall’s term at Elmira College. Qualifying students earned a term grade point average of 3.60 or higher and were registered for 12 credit hours. Elmira College is ranked nationally as a top college for student internships and their Center for Mark Twain Studies is one of four historically significant Twain heritage sites in the U.S.

AUSPICIOUS ACQUISITION: Digital printing and document service Dataflow has acquired Edmeston-based Prolifiq Sign Studio, increasing the latter’s ability to serve more businesses in upstate New York. Prolifiq Sign Studio, established in 2006, provides interior and exterior printing services, producing signage products and decals for wrapping vehicles and boats. Dataflow has production facilities across upstate New York and is the exclusive area partner of RMX Network, a system of more than 100 independently owned print businesses across the U.S., Canada, and Europe.

SKILLED SWIMMERS: John Hodgson, Cooperstown Central School’s varsity girl’s swimming coach, was named All-Mohawk Valley Coach of the Year for the 2022 fall season. In addition, CCS swimmers Emily Kane and Caitlin O’Sullivan were selected to the All-Mohawk Valley Team, with Kane securing Player of the Year honors. The selections were made through voting from coaches and input from “Observer-Dispatch” and “Times Telegram” sportswriters.

AWESOME ACCOMPLISHMENT: Springbrook recognized the 15-year career milestone mark of Gordon Mumbulo, their assistant director for community homes in the Sidney Plains Region.

BOLSTERING BUSINESSES: Hartwick area digital marketing advisor Susan O’Handley announced a series of new programs, called Bits & Bytes, promoted by Central NY Mobile Marketing and starting in this month. O’Handley’s One-Day Digital Marketing Service aims to help small business owners achieve their marketing goals by offering expertise for a one-day trial, available during January, February and March. “Tech Talks with Susan” offer free, informal Zoom meetings from 8-8:30 a.m. on the second Thursday of each month, starting on January 12, discussing digital marketing strategies. Finally, the Central NY Mobile Marketing Bits & Bytes blog will offer helpful resources and articles on marketing.

Dr. Shannon Toomey Belanger

THE EYES HAVE IT: Dr. Shannon Toomey Belanger recently joined the staff of Costello Eye Physicians and Surgeons at its Oneonta location. Belanger received her Bachelor of Science degree at Syracuse University. She went on to receive her doctorate degree at The Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago, Illinois. After graduating with multiple scholastic scholarships and awards, she went on to do a family practice residency specializing in pediatrics at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. Dr. Belanger was able to perform laser and minor surgical procedures as a resident and spent time working in the hospital caring for all ocular emergencies. Passionate about connecting with patients and helping them achieve comfortable vision, she is proficient in all areas of optometry including glaucoma management, macular degeneration, dry eye disease, diabetic eye exams and primary care. Dr. Belanger lives in Oneonta with her three kids and is an active resident in the community. In her spare time, she enjoys running, hiking, photography and spending time outdoors with her goldendoodle, Lulu.

READING ROCK STARS: Milford Central School announced its 2022 Summer Reading Challenge Winners to be Willow Atkinson (Grade 2), Evie Reder (Grade 2), and Reagan Wellman (Grade 1). Each student received a $20.00 gift card to the Green Toad Bookstore in Oneonta. Held amongst students in grades pre-kindergarten through two and three through six, the Summer Reading Challenge was hosted by the Milford Free Library and the New York Public Library system in collaboration with Milford Central School. The theme of the challenge, which encouraged students to grow their love of reading, was “Oceans of Possibilities,” with the hope of galvanizing interest in the ocean, environmentalism and adventures at sea.

POPPIN’ POP-UP: Though the new Pioneer Street-based pop-up shop “Love and a Truck Collective”—a vintage rental and creative company in Cooperstown—plans to operate through February 28, they have received enough interest to consider staying longer. The company’s name derives from a saying that owners Mike and Kelly Newell would exclaim after one of their numerous adventures in the Toyota Tacoma they drove during each trip. The shop will be bringing in vintage furniture, vintage travel ephemera and “Love and a Truck Co.” merchandise, such as sweatshirts, T-shirts, decals, bandanas, and more in the new year. They operate in collaboration with Mikala Gallo, who sells photography prints. In the coming weeks, Love and a Truck Co. hopes to highlight local makers and artists and host “Sip + Shop” events, having already had success with the latter. The Newells, who have family based in Jefferson, New York, looks forward to connecting with the local community and supporting business entrepreneurship with networking nights and gatherings in 2023. To learn more about Love and a Truck Co., visit

Kurt Holcherr, Antoinette Hull, Cynthia Kukenberger, ONC BOCES District Superintendent Dr. Catherine Huber, Jaqueline Parry, Dr. Deborah Fox, Timothy Powell and Joseph Ballard. Not pictured: board members Collin Miller and Al Rubin. (Photos provided)

Small Gifts Have Big Meaning: Otsego Northern Catskills BOCES Board of Education members were celebrated recently for School Board Appreciation Month. Current President Antoinette Hull and Vice President Joseph Ballard are joined by board members Dr. Deborah Fox, Kurt Holcherr, Cynthia Kukenberger, Collin Miller, Jaqueline Parry, Timothy Powell, and Al Rubin in ensuring that ONC BOCES provides the best services possible to its students, component districts, and community. In celebration of School Board Appreciation Month, three classes at ONC BOCES collaborated to create gifts for the board members. Miniature cornhole games were built by Daniel Amos’ Building Trades students at the Otsego Area Occupational Center, including Cameron Rogers at bottom right. Lindy Lapin’s Visual Communications class at the Northern Catskills Occupational Center—represented at top right by Naleia Burroughs—created the ONC logos to put on the boards and, for finishing touches, Amy Schmitt’s Career Pathways students made miniature beanbags.

Naleia Burroughs
Cameron Rogers

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