Qué está pasando: 4to trimestre de 2022

Newsletter sponsored by: Banco TD
TD Bank logo

Consejo de Construcción, Bienes Raíces y Desarrollo (CRED)

Economic Development Government Affairs (EDGA)

Consejo Verde

Alianza de Hotelería y Turismo

HR Connexions

Consejo de marketing profesional

Rockland Emerging Business Owners & Professionals (REBOP)

Iniciativa Tecnológica

Women’s Leadership Council




Consejo de Construcción, Bienes Raíces y Desarrollo (CRED)

CRED supports and empowers RBA members who are in real estate, development, and construction through networking, resource sharing, education and advocacy.

It was a delight to have our meeting at the Orangetown Town Hall with the support of Orangetown Supervisor Teresa Kenny, who gave our audience a comprehensive account of the  amazing growth and future outlook on Orangetown as a whole.  Rick Tannenbaum of Houlihan Lawrence Commercial provided an overview of real estate, development, with responsible zoning, the need for additional housing units, and the importance of regional planning.

Our meeting in November was held at the Patriot Lounge in Stony Point.  The presenters were Jim Monaghan, Stony Point Town Supervisor, who shared the town’s initiatives and economic development news, and Steven Breen, M&T Bank, Vice President of Business Banking Relationship Manager, who explained an analysis of financial vehicles in today’s dramatically adjusting environment of commercial lending. Thanks to M&T Bank who sponsored food for the after-meeting networking.  

Michael and I have enjoyed Co-Charing the CRED Council and getting to meet the attendees and presenters.  Each meeting our attendance is increasing and the community support is phenomenal.

Please contact us for any ideas on topics of interest:
Michael Chang- michael.chang@randcommercial.com

Tivona Cunningham- tivonacunningham@gmail.com

Economic Development / Government Affairs

The 4th quarter of each year always is active for folks interested in government affairs and 2022 was no different. We were facing an election that could (and, in fact, did) result in the first woman being elected governor of New York State ( a true milestone); concerns about public safety linked to bail reform; inflation; issues regarding affordable housing; the effects of the Climate Leadership Consumer Protection Act and, of course, Congestion Pricing.

To gain insights and perspectives on these and other issues, our Economic Development/Government Affairs group invited Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski and (then) Sen. Elijah Reichlin-Melnick to meet with us. Both gentlemen presented very frank comments on how they thought their respective chambers might be addressing these and other issues in 2023.

Two days after Election Day, the group met to discuss the results and ramifications for Rockland. This included some candid and pithy commentary on such outcomes as Mike Lawler’s victory over Sean Patrick Maloney, Lee Zeldin beating-out Kathy Hochul in Rockland and Bill Weber’s victory in the race for District 38 in the Senate.

Alianza de Hotelería y Turismo

 Craig Smith, Managing Director of the Phoenix Theater Ensemble, joined our HTA group to talk about the success of the Phoenix Festival. This first-time effort produced some stunning results and there are plans to repeat the event in 2023.

Craig noted that 59% of those attending Festival events were from outside of Rockland, with the heaviest representation from New York City, New Jersey and Westchester County. Disturbingly, there was very little representation from the Hudson Valley. He also shared that the event employed 135 local people, brought in approximately $50,000 in sponsorships and accounted for a roughly $275,000 investment having been made in Rockland.

Also joining us was Paul Adler, Chief Strategy Officer, Rand Commercial, who was invited to speak about the company’s new Hospitality Division. This is a unit dedicated to serving the needs of the sectors served by the RBA’s HTA: restaurants; bars; catering complexes; hotels; waterfront properties such as marinas; amusement and resort properties. The new division will be servicing New York and New Jersey and will be headed up by Richard Pellegrino.



Consejo Verde

It’s all about Incentives, Tax Credits and Sustainability.

The highlight of the Green Council’s 4th Quarter was the December meeting held in conjunction with the Palisades Institute of Dominican University NY titled “Sustainability Opportunities For Small Businesses Forum”.  A distinguished panel of speakers provided advice for small business owners and decision-makers on sustainability. The panel included Bill Madden, Veolia; Joe Porrovecchio, EPS Corporation; Jan Degenshein, Degenshein Architects; John Lyon, Rockland County and Kai Wu, Orange and Rockland Utilities.

In October, the Green Council did a presentation on the Inflation Reduction Act and Tax Credits for builders and developers.  We also discussed home owner incentives for solar installations, electrification and support for more stringent energy code.

A roundtable discussion in November focused on attendees introducing their companies and discussing what initiatives they are taking to improve efficiency and sustainability.

Respectfully submitted,

Tony Lisanti, CEM, CPHC
Integral Building and Design
Jan Degenshein, AIA, FAICP, LEED AP
Degenshein Architects
Green Council Co-Chairs

Our November meeting was a joint meeting with the RBA Women’s Leadership Council. Topic of the day was all about flexibility and work life support for anyone, including small companies looking to maintain productivity while allowing employees the opportunity to decide how to work with new challenges facing us since the pandemic. Our speaker, Kathryn Sollmann, who is an author, speaker and career coach and also started a group called The 4 Jobs Club, brought many insightful information to the group via ZOOM.

Topics adressed included:

  • The 4 Jobs Reality: Why One-Third of Women Have One Foot Out of the Workforce
  • How Small Companies Can Support Big Work-Life Issues: A Look at Basic Employee Resource Groups and More
  • What Work Flexibility Really Means: Thinking Beyond Just Working at Home
  • How to Structure Flexibility for Teams, Not Just Individuals

Reminder: We will be posting our meetings on the RBA calendar so that you can keep abreast of when we are having our meeting since we don’t meet every month.

Please reach out to one of us to be added to our invitation list. Meetings are open to all who are either in the HR profession or are involved with the HR role at their company or owners of their company.

HR Connexions was formed in 2013 and  we would love to see the group continue to grow.  Please reach out to one of us to be added to our invitation list. Meetings are open to all who are either in the HR profession or are involved with the HR role at their company or owners of their company.


Liz O’Halloran & Lena Bodin


Doreen:  db@rocklandbusiness.org

Lena:  lena@4prs.com

Liz:  ohalloranl@coned.com

The September meeting featured Jeff Lewis and Risa Hoag presenting ideas for enhancing your fall marketing. Some of the pointers included ordering gifts early, taking advantage of year-end opportunities to share your expertise, planning with your team for 2023, and considering ways to partner and collaborate with other businesses.

The October meeting titled, The Future of Interactive Video & Commerce Automation was presented by Jay Wolff, Senior Vice President of KERV Interactive. Jay gave us an overview of his company’s dynamic marketing technology that really isn’t available through any other source at the moment. It uses popular video technology to transform a previously passive medium into an active encounter. KERV is cutting edge and uses AI driven technology to bridge content, commerce, and media through precise automation.

The November meeting, titled, “RCBJ – Why Hyper Local News Matters and Why it Should Matter to You,” was presented by Tina Traster, Publisher of the Rockland County Business Journal, the first digital-only news organization covering exclusively Rockland County designed to serve the community with stories about the economy, retail, real estate, business profiles, and more. Tina discussed the kinds of news stories that generate interest by the readers of her 24/7 digital news platform and how RBA members could benefit from those opportunities.


Rockland Emerging Business Owners & Professionals

REBOP was thrilled to host Rockland-area professionals with a safe and festive in-person event at Two Ladders Brewing in West Nyack after over a year of virtual gatherings. The Holiday Mixer exceeded expectations, hosting more than 20 attendees, including an RBA Ambassador and Clarkstown Town Supervisor George Hoehmann! Everyone was able to network and try some of the craft beers, all unique to Two Ladders Brewing. It’s no surprise that we are going into 2023 feeling optimistic about the upcoming events this new year will bring. Cheers to an amazing 2023 ahead!

Co-Chaired by David Palma, Payed Processing, Jason Horowitz, Triforce Commercial Real Estate LLC

REBOP has held monthly Zoom calls to network and connect with our peers.

To learn more about REBOP visit the REBOP Facebook page facebook.com/reboprba

‘Tis the Season to be Scamming

Zelle, Paypal, Venmo, Cash App are digital payment methods that allow you to make or receive payments quickly and easily; either directly from your bank account or between parties through online transfers. Many people and businesses who are seeking safe contactless payment options have grown more comfortable using mobile payment apps since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but scammers have been taking advantage of the quick and sometimes anonymous access to cash that these mobile payment apps often provide.These payment services are among the best ways to send money. But because funds are transferred directly and quickly to recipients’ accounts, and transactions don’t carry the same consumer protections as credit or debit card fraud, it’s critical to use them safely. During the presentation, we identified some of the most common scams people might encounter, as well as information on how to keep safe.

Technology Initiative Co-Chairs:
Justin Schwartz, Atlantic Tomorrow’s Office; Brian Campbell, Rockland Pros; Barbara Shapiro, TD Bank 


Women’s Leadership Council

Fuel your business aspirations with the help of Women’s Leadership Council

The Women’s Leadership Council wrapped up the fourth quarter in grand fashion with an exciting joint forum between the WLC and HR Connexions entitled “How Every Company on Any Budget Can Simplify Flexibility & Work-Life Support.” The guest speaker, Kathryn Sollman, is a well known author, speaker, and career coach who specializes in supporting professional women in navigating transitions and re-inventing themselves throughout every age and stage of their lives. Kathyrn waxed eloquently about the many full time jobs women hold as mothers. parental caregivers, and heads of households, in addition to being corporate employees. She stressed the importance of flexibility in managing these many roles, and highlighted strategies whereby both individuals and organizations can create and perpetuate workplace cultures that promote a work-life balance.


Stephanie Madison, madisons@mharockland.org;

Julie Sadowski, julie@rocklandgives.org