The Otsego County Chamber of Commerce’s Summer Soirée was this evening, celebrating local businesses that promote a good and sustainable life in Otsego County. Information Systems Division (ISD Tech) of Oneonta received the Environmental Stewardship Award for its computer- and electronics-recycling program. The Clark Sports Center of Cooperstown received the Quality of Life Award for helping over 5,500 members live healthier, (including 37 members over 90, who get free memberships). Above, center, are chamber President Barbara Ann Heegan, Quality of Life sponsor Scott White, Bank of Cooperstown president, behind her at left, and George Busch, NBT Insurance vice president/sales. To to the left of Heegan, front row, are ISD partners Ron Ranc and Roxanna Hurlburt; behind, from right, are ISD’s Chris Ranc, Wilhemina Guest and Mike LaBarr. To the right of Heagan are Clark Director Val Paige and her managers, Erin Newkirk, Kathy Graham, Jim DiLiberto and Rich Jantzi. Inset, left, Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, reads citations from state Sen. Jim Seward, r-Milford, who was also represented by his aide, Mira Jergovich, commending the two organizations. The dinner, attended by 80, was in the middle of the Clark’s basketball court. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
ONEONTA – The secret to business longevity, said Al Cleinman, is knowledge.
“We had six people around the table the other day, and I realized that between them, they had 70 years of experience here,” he said. “We employ smart people.”
The Otsego County Chamber of Commerce honored Cleinman Performance Partners this morning with a luncheon celebrating their 30 years in Oneonta, building one of the leading business consultants for larger optometry practices.
By LIBBY CUDMORE • The Freeman’s Journal & Hometown Oneonta
EDMESTON – When she was 16, Joanna Draper had a brain tumor removed and was in a coma for a month. Though she recovered, her short-term memory was all but gone, dashing her hopes of continuing to perform in musical theater.
But now, you can find her serenading customers at the Pathfinder Village bakery and café, where she has worked for two years. “I’m doing so well that they let me work here,” she said. “I sing to the customers. I give them a hug if they’re having a bad day. It’s about treating people how I want to be treated, with kindness and a smile.”
“Her parents recognized that she would fit in here as a hire, not as a service recipient,” said CEO Paul Landers. “And since she started working here, her neurologist has seen her memory improving.”
The Otsego County Chamber of Commerce held a recognition ceremony for 10- and 20-year members at a Business After Hours event in the Foothills Atrium. Above, the honorees pose for a group photo. Front row: Pat Knuth, ARC Otsego; Lizbeth Parent, Corning; Alicia Fish, Catskill Area Hospice; Mary Ann Bollinger, Community Bank, and Stacie Haynes, Susquehanna SPCA. Back row: Chris Hobert, Springbrook; Paul Landers, Pathfinder Village; Jim Kevlin, The Freeman’s Journal, Hometown Oneonta and All.OTSEGO.com; Alan Sessions, CDO Workforce; Nick Savin, ONC BOCES; Pete Armao, Country Club Auto; Dave Ohman, Delaware Engineering; Chris Kuhn, Oneonta Job Corps Academy, and Johnna Peachin, Peachin & Associates. At right, Otsego County Chamber President Barbara Ann Heegan, presents Chris Kuhn, director of OJCA, with his certificate marking 10 years with the chamber. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
NETWORKING – 5:30-7:30 p.m. Celebrate 10 and 20 year member anniversaries with the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce at their Business After Hours event. Foothills, 24 Market St., Oneonta. Info, confirmation, (607) 432-4500.
CAREER EXPO – 5 – 8 p.m. Students, families, adults are invited to learn what careers are available in our region, educational opportunities, more. Meet with business, college exhibitors to learn what opportunities can be found in our backyard. ONC Boces, 1914 Co. Hwy. 35, Milford. 607-432-4500 ext. 104 or visit otsegocc.com
Ahead of opening his Oneonta office on Thursday, Feb. 7, Congressman Antonio Delgado, D-19, met with members of Otsego County’s small business community at Hartwick College’s Shineman Chapel this afternoon. “I’m best equipped as your advocate when I have spoken to you” he told, seated from left, Michelle Catan, Small Business Development Center director; Jill Morgan-Meek, owner, Transitions Boutique; Otsego Now CEO Jody Zakrevsky, and developer Ed May. The discussion was hosted by the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce, and earlier that afternoon, Delgado spoke with the Leatherstocking Young Farmers. At right, Jason Tabor, Principal Financial Group of Cooperstown and President, Friends of Bassett, engages Delgado on his thoughts about solving the county’s housing crisis. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)
COOPERSTOWN – In the end, 170 – up from 125 a week ago, and 155 a couple of days ago – today listened for eight hours to presentations on the United States’ – and Otsego County’s – energy future from some of the most knowledgeable people in New York State.
The venue was the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce’s “Energy Summit: Energy & The Economy,” which finished up in late afternoon in The Otesaga’s pretty-close-to-full ballroom.
When it was over, Al Rubin, chairman of the chamber’s board, and chamber President Barbara Ann Heegan both said they were pleased by the amount of information the 19 varied presenters delivered in mostly 15-minute segments between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
“This wasn’t about debate,” said Rubin. “This was about listening to what other people had to say. This event met and beat our expectations.” But, he added, “The work begins now.”