Foundation Events

The Chamber Foundation Spotlight

Dutchess Chamber, Foundation hires, promotes staffers

The Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce and The Chamber Foundation, Inc. announce the promotion of two staff members and welcome two new employees to the team.

Louise McLoughlin has been promoted to Senior Vice President of Business Services. McLoughlin has been with the Chamber for 8 years, serving most recently as Vice President of Workforce Development. With her promotion, she will continue to supervise the day-to-day operations of the Chamber’s Workforce Development Center and Youth One Stop, and will also lead the member services team of Director of Membership Elena McPhee and the new Director of Business Services, Nancy Dewitt, formerly of The Chamber Foundation.

DeWitt educates businesses on the resources and benefits of their membership. She assists with facilitating networking connections as well as evaluating and developing strategic marketing plans. Nancy is also the staff liaison for the Ambassador Committee. DeWitt has more than 20 years experience in the healthcare and marketing industries.

Joining The Foundation is Brianne Kelly as the new Programming Coordinator. She will be responsible for coordinating all Foundation programming, development and event management. A Hudson Valley resident, Kelly recently returned from a 27-month tour with the Peace Corps as a Youth Development Volunteer in Bouarfa, Morocco, working with youth and women on topics such as leadership, empowerment, gender development, AIDS/HIV awareness, health and fitness, volunteerism, employability skills, and English as a foreign language.

Jean Harris also recently joined the Chamber as Director of Events. Harris oversees all Chamber events, coordinating services such as venues, catering, signage, displays, special needs requirements, printing and helping with promotion. Harris has 26 years experience in marketing and advertising at the Poughkeepsie Journal before she joined the Chamber.

“We’re thrilled to continue our culture of promoting from within as well as welcoming new, talented additions to our team. I am confident each will play an important role in our ongoing efforts to serve our local business community,” said the Chamber’s President and CEO Frank Castella, Jr.

Founded in 1907, the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce is committed to the growth and development of local businesses and the economy. For more information about Chamber happenings, the complete events calendar, or to find out how we might best serve as an advocate for you and your business, please visit dcrcoc.org.

The Chamber Foundation, Inc., was established in 2002 to promote education and training programs for local youth and professionals with the goal of enhancing the Hudson Valley region’s future of economic growth. Its mission is to provide educational opportunities for youth and the workforce, to build and strengthen personal and business capacity, develop leadership skills and foster a commitment to community service. For more information, visit ChamberFDN.org.

Hudson Valley KidVenture coming to downtown Poughkeepsie in 2017

The Chamber Foundation, Inc., the nonprofit fundraising branch of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce, announced at the chamber’s monthly contact breakfast yesterday that Hudson Valley KidVenture is coming in 2017 to downtown Poughkeepsie on May 20-21.

Chamber members, guests, and local celebrities including Q92’s Morning Mayor Joe Daily, Hudson Valley Renegades’ mascot Rascal, the Marist mascot Shooter, Pamal Broadcasting’s Hudson Valley Bear and local kids celebrated the exciting news of this weekend-long, family-friendly event and all of the attractions in the works.

“We are very excited about everything we are planning,” said Nicholas Shannon, executive director of The Chamber Foundation, Inc. “KidVenture is going to be an incredible event that will include a full weekend of interactive activities, performances, demonstrations and hands-on learning and experiences for kids of all ages.”

KidVenture will take over Market Street, The Changepoint Theatre, and the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in the City of Poughkeepsie and is being presented by IBM and Westchester Medical Center Health Network. Gold sponsor is the Poughkeepsie Galleria. Media sponsors are Q92 and iHeart Media, Pamal Broadcasting and Poughkeepsie Journal Media. All proceeds will benefit The Chamber Foundation. Many sponsorship opportunities are available. Please call Rich Kleban at (845) 454-1700, ext. 1023 for sponsorship information.

Hudson Valley KidVenture’s theme for 2017 is “Exploring the Hudson Valley” and The Chamber Foundation is currently recruiting vendors, entertainers, food trucks and more. All information including the vendor registration form can be found at hvkidventure.org.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for local businesses to get in front of our community,” Shannon said. “Both Dutchess County Regional Chamber members and nonmembers are encouraged to get involved in what is sure to be a signature event in the Hudson Valley.”

Tickets for KidVenture can be purchased online at hvkidventure.org in advance for $8 each - $10 at the door.

Questions should be directed to Monica Relyea of Monica Relyea Events, event coordinator of KidVenture for The Chamber Foundation. She can be reached at (914) 204-2004 or email hvkidventure@chamberfdn.org.

The Chamber Foundation, Inc., was established in 2002 to promote education and training programs for local youth and professionals with the goal of enhancing the Hudson Valley region’s future of economic growth. Its mission is to provide educational opportunities for youth and the workforce, to build and strengthen personal and business capacity, develop leadership skills and foster a commitment to community service. For more information, visit ChamberFDN.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foundation awarded Youth One Stop contract for two years

The Chamber Foundation, Inc.—the fundraising branch of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce—is pleased to announce it has been awarded the Dutchess County Workforce Investment Board’s Dutchess County Youth One Stop Program for two years.

“All of the proposals were very strong and uniquely qualified,” said Laraine Kautz, Executive Director of the Dutchess County Workforce Investment Board. “At the end of the process, the Youth One Stop Program, now at The Chamber Foundation, was selected because of the impressive program that the team has created.  They meet the young adults where they are in life and elevate them to where they can succeed in the workforce.  They did a remarkable job in the first two years, learning curve and all. It will be exciting to see how their experience and very ambitious vision grows Youth One Stop over the next two years.”

Youth One Stop, formerly under the auspices of The Chamber, is a comprehensive education and job-training program utilizing local resources to benefit at-risk youth in Dutchess County.

“The Youth One Stop is a great program that motivates and pushes us to work towards the goals we want for ourselves and helps us when we feel we are not where we want to be in life and are not sure how to get there,” said Tatiana Cintron, a Youth One Stop participant.

The program is open to income-eligible Dutchess County youth—including youth with disabilities and youth in foster care ages 16-29—who are facing obstacles inhibiting them from completing school, finishing their High School Equivalency or gaining employment.  Participants explore career options in the community and gain practical experience through jobs and internships as well as gaining access to tutoring, mentorship and degree/certification programs.  

“The Youth One Stop and its staff of mentors has made a name for itself as a valuable asset to the community and of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce for two years. Now, under The Chamber Foundation, can only grow and continue to contribute to the county’s economic growth by supporting employers and job seekers through its resources and services,” said Frank Castella, Jr., President and CEO of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce and President of The Chamber Foundation, Inc. “We are proud to work cooperatively with the DC WIB and the more than 30 community agencies we partner with on a regular basis to deliver exceptional mentoring to our participants.”

The Dutchess County Youth One Stop provides access to skilled, pre-screened workers for employers as well as on-the-job and customized training opportunities. For the job seeker, career preparation and counseling, training or employment advancement opportunities and a full service resource room are also available.

“The Youth One Stop is amazing; through all my ups and downs they [are] right there by my side. My case manager does everything in her power to find a solution to any problem that I have. They’re truly a blessing and wonderful people to have during the good and bad times of my life,” said Takeisha Smith, a Youth One Stop participant.

For a full list of services and more information, visit the Dutchess County Youth One Stop website at www.myyos.org or call (845) 454-7629. The Dutchess County Youth One Stop is located at One Civic Center Plaza, Suite 407 in Poughkeepsie.

The Chamber Foundation, Inc. aims toprovide educational opportunities, develop leadership skills and foster a commitment to community service for youth and the workforce. For more about the Chamber Foundation, visit www.chamberfdn.org


Youth Leadership program helps develop skills


The Youth Leadership program aims to help local high school students develop academic, social and life skills and provides them with out-of-the-classroom leadership experiences.  A two-year program, Youth Leadership focuses on helping students look beyond high school and providing them with tools to prepare for their futures.

The program is open to any sophomore or junior at a public or private high school in the Mid-Hudson Valley. Selection is on a first-come, first-served basis, and sophomores are particularly encouraged to apply.  If you know of a student who could benefit from participating, click here for details or call Nick Shannon at 845-454-1700 ext. 1026 with questions. 

 

Youth Leadership Participants Honored at Ceremony

More than 70 student participants in The Chamber Foundation, Inc.’s Youth Leadership Program were honored at a recognition dinner held June 3 at The Villa Borghese in Wappingers Falls.

The Youth Leadership program aims to help local high school students develop academic, social and life skills and provides them with out-of-the-classroom leadership experiences. A two-year program, Youth Leadership focuses on helping students look beyond high school and providing them with tools to prepare for their futures.

This is accomplished in part through monthly meetings featuring local community leaders and professionals who talk to the students about a variety of leadership and life-skill topics, such as team building, communication and public speaking, money management, diversity, college planning, ethics and finance.

“The Chamber Foundation is very proud of this year’s Youth Leadership students. We have seen growth in their confidence and ability to take on challenges both academically and personally,” said Nicholas Shannon, executive director of The Chamber Foundation, Inc. “We are confident that the lessons they have learned will benefit them well into their future.”

The program splits the students into two tracks focusing on specific skills. Track One, the Junior Achievement Track, is typically for sophomores, and encourages the students to form their own student-based company. In the process, they learn about stock sales and product selection as well as sales and marketing techniques. Students in this track also are asked to complete 10 hours of community service.

Track Two, the Career, Education and Life Skills Track, is geared toward juniors and focuses on preparation for life after high school, including résumé writing, interview skills, college applications and paying for college. As part of this track, students must complete 20-hour internships in their fields of interest.

Students may also complete college-level coursework through the program. Marist College offers discounted courses to juniors and seniors participating in Dutchess Leadership through its Greystone Program. Student Billy Smart was recognized at the dinner for having taken a Marist College course through the program that earned three college credits for $200, saving him nearly $2,000.

The program offered this year’s students a variety of experiences, including a dinner in the Marist College dining hall to give them a taste of campus life. They also went on a trip to Sharpe Reservation for a day of team building and took a Youth Leadership Tour of Dutchess County, visiting sites including Vassar Brothers Medical Center, the Trevor Zoo, Madava Farms – Home of Crown Maple Syrup and The Culinary Institute of America. The exposure to these diverse valley destinations was intended to acquaint students with a wide range of career possibilities.

Enrollment is open for next year’s youth leadership program. The program is open to any sophomore or junior at a public or private high school in the Mid-Hudson Valley. Selection is on a first-come, first-served basis, and sophomores are particularly encouraged to apply. If you know of a student who could benefit from participating, visit www.chamberfdn.org/programs/youth-leadership for details or call Nick Shannon at 845-454-1700 ext. 1026 with questions. The application deadline has been extended to June 19.

The Youth Leadership Program is sponsored by IBM and The Gap, Inc.; the Youth Leadership Recognition Dinner was sponsored by DCH Wappingers Falls Toyota and Health Quest.

The Chamber Foundation, Inc., is the fundraising arm of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce that aims to provide educational opportunities, develop leadership skills and foster a commitment to community service for youth and the workforce. For more about the Chamber Foundation, visit www.chamberfdn.org