Operation Oswego County Holds 72nd Annual Meeting

Posted on June 14, 2024

Operation Oswego County Holds 72nd Annual Meeting

Economic Development Organization Presents Annual Highlights, Achievement Awards, Elects New Board President

Operation Oswego County (OOC) held its 72nd annual meeting on Thursday, June 13th at the Lake Ontario Event and Conference Center in Oswego, NY.

Ellen Holst, president of the OOC board of directors, welcomed 170 representatives of businesses, government, education, labor and other community organizations to the meeting.

Key note presenter Joseph Pacher, Senior Vice President of Operations at Constellation Energy, spoke of Constellation’s economic impact on Oswego County, how their plants help New York State to meet their clean energy goals, and their plans to continue to invest in and relicense Nine Mile I, Nine Mile II, and the James A. FitzPatrick nuclear plants. Collectively these plants produce 2,514 MW of power which is enough to power two million homes. Pacher also reported that Constellation paid more than $69 Million dollars in state and local taxes in 2023, which directly supports local schools and municipalities. He also stated that looking back to 2017, Constellation has made over $615 Million dollars of capital investments into the three nuclear sites in upstate NY including Nine Mile I & II, FitzPatrick, and R.E. Ginna in Wayne County.   

Austin Wheelock, Executive Director of OOC, reported that in 2023, projects assisted by OOC and the County of Oswego IDA (COIDA) resulted in the creation or retention of 630 jobs with over $130 million in capital investment associated with 33 new, expanded or retained facilities in the targeted industry clusters of manufacturing, healthcare, tourism and hospitality, agribusiness and energy. Projects were spread over 16 municipalities around Oswego County. Wheelock also reported on marketing highlights and collaborative initiatives with key stakeholders such as National Grid, Oswego County Tourism, SUNY Oswego, the Port of Oswego Authority, Oswego County Workforce New York, and the Greater Oswego Fulton Chamber of Commerce.

Three business organizations, a successful entrepreneur and a long-standing economic development advocate were also honored for significant contributions to economic development and job creation in Oswego County.

The Ally Award for 2024 was presented to Onondaga SBDC in recognition and appreciation of the vision, commitment and leadership exhibited by the Onondaga Small Business Development Center to provide critical entrepreneurial training and technical assistance to the small businesses and entrepreneurs of Oswego County; and for being a vital and essential partner in economic development in Oswego County, NY.

The Business Excellence Award for 2024 was presented to River View Pediatrics in recognition and appreciation for demonstrating outstanding leadership and commitment in operating and retaining River View Pediatrics in Oswego County; for showing resiliency, adaptation and growth in a changing market for pediatric healthcare services; for the vision to revitalize and expand into a vacant building; and for its 40+ years of business excellence in the City of Fulton in Oswego County, NY.

The 2024 Jobs Award was presented to Broadwell Hospitality Group in recognition and appreciation of the significant contribution and economic impact of Broadwell Hospitality Group on the Oswego County economy by providing high quality tourism attractions and hospitality services in the City of Oswego and Town of Scriba; for employing over 200 persons across multiple venues; for the opening of the Splash Indoor Water Park Resort in 2023; and for its 49 year history of business growth in Oswego County, NY.

Dr. Ali Hawthorn received OOC’s 2024 Dee Heckethorn Entrepreneur Award in recognition and appreciation of exceptional entrepreneurial spirit, creativity and dedication to expanding Highland Animal Hospital, a small animal veterinary clinic in Oswego County; for receiving the SBA Woman Owned Small Business of the Year Award for Upstate New York; and for her vision to improve the quality of life for animals and humans alike in the Village of Central Square, Oswego County, and beyond.

H. Leonard Schick was honored with the 2024 Martin Rose Economic Developer Merit Award in recognition and appreciation of H. Leonard Schick’s outstanding record of leadership, expertise, support and commitment to enhance the economic vitality of Oswego County’s businesses, industries, communities and citizens; by serving on the Board of Directors of the County of Oswego Industrial Development Agency for eighteen years; and for serving on numerous other boards and organizations that are vital to economic development and quality of life such as the Mexico Chamber of Commerce, Fulton City School Board of Education, and Fulton Youth Soccer.

The OOC Board elected a new slate of officers to two year terms. Pete Cullinan, retired, Exelon, as Board President, John Sharkey IV, Universal Metal Works, as Vice President, Tricia Peter Clark, ConnextCare, as Treasurer, and Eric Behling, Behling Orchards, as Secretary.

The OOC board of directors re-elected board members Edward Gilson, County Legislator; Brian Heffron, CiTi BOCES; Ellen Holst, Oswego County Opportunities, retired; John Sharkey IV, Universal Metal Works; and Ronald G. Tascarella, Pathfinder Bank.

The OOC board of directors also elected Joseph Demars of Huhtamaki and Collin Palm of the Fulton Companies for 1-year terms, Tom Roman of Fulton Savings Bank, Rachel Pierce of the Workforce Development Board of Oswego County, and Ryan Malone of WD Malone Trucking & Excavating for 3-year terms.

Retiring from the OOC board of directors was Tim Hardy, after 6 years of service; Vincent Lobdell, after 17 years of service; Joseph McConnell, after 4 years of service; Joseph Solazzo, after 18 years of service; and David Turner, after 29 years of service.

For more information about economic development services in Oswego County, call OOC at 343-1545 or visit www.oswegocounty.org.

Greater Oswego-Fulton Chamber of Commerce

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