Thursday, October 30, 2014

JOE'S NEW NEWS ARTICLE: Ulster Latino business leaders hold Spanish speaking entrepreneur seminar


Joe Bevilacqua recording
County Executive Michael Hein

Ulster Latino business leaders hold Spanish speaking entrepreneur seminar

ELLENVILLE –  Patrick Nilo and his wife Paulina were two of about 15 people who attended the Spanish Speaking Entrepreneur Seminar, held at Gabby’s CafĂ© in Ellenville on Wednesday. It was hosted by the Ulster County Economic Development Alliance.

Attendees welcomed by County Executive Michael Hein
Mr. Nilo came to the United States from Chile in 1972 and soon found work at the Granit Hotel in Kerhonkson. When the Granit closed down – it has since reopened as The Hudson Valley Resort and Spa – Nilo said he “could have gone on welfare but that never crossed my mind.”

Instead, he worked at any job he could land until he was offered a chance to buy a cab company.

Today, Patrick and Paulina’s CJ Cab is celebrating its 20th year in Ellenville.

For Genero Garcia, the restaurant business is booming. Four years ago, a second Gaby’s opened in Rhinebeck and he is now renovating a new space across the street from his current Ellenville location.  He wanted to hold the seminar to help people seeking business guidance.

Genero Garcia co-owner
of Gaby's Restaurant in Ellenville, NY
“I remember when I started, it wasn’t an easy task; it was very hard, especially when it comes to the economic part of the business and the legal part of the business and the procedures,” Garcia said.  “It’s very hard because you don’t know what to do, who to call. This is something I wanted to do to help people who want to make a difference here or anywhere.”

Garcia, who was raised in New York City, came to the United States from Mexico when he was 13 years old.

“I always worked. I learned the language. I didn’t go to school a lot, just got the basics. I went to work in the food industry.”

Now Garcia wants to give back to his community by passing on what he has learned about running a successful business.

“You have to know what you really want. You have to have a clear vision of what you are looking for. With my help, we can grow the economy. Small business is what drives the national economy.”

Carlos Campuzano
being interviewed by
Joe Bevilacqua
A panel fielded questions about how to access the banking system, how do you get a loan, the Affordable Health Care Act, and even solar power incentives.

Carlos Campuzano worked for a community bank for more than 10 years and said he attended the seminar “to inform the people how to qualify for a commercial loan.”

Hispanics are the fastest growing ethnic group in the United States. According to the 2013 census, they constitute 17 percent of the United States population, or 53 million people.

The total Hispanic population in the Village of Ellenville was 1,154 in 2013.

The Columbia, South America born Campuzano pointed out that in Ulster County alone, there are almost 20,000 Spanish speakers. In Ellenville, there are Spanish speakers from Mexico, Central America, and South America.

“They are here because there used to be a lot of jobs here—factories; unfortunately, they closed,” Campuzano said.  “Apparently, they are still here but now, they want to open their own businesses in this area. They like to live in this area. They don’t want to move.”

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