Chamber President Hands out Cell Phone Number as Gesture of Accessibility
On Thursday, September 4, 2014 the Orange County Chamber breakfast crowd gleefully welcomed Lynn Allen Cione to her new role as President. Cione described her orientation at the chamber like being a 'kid in a candy store.' In a speech at the breakfast held at West Hills Country Club, Cione got things rolling with some early-morning networking. "Networking is really scary," she said as she glanced around at the faces of a hundred and fifty early morning risers.
"Hi. I don't know you. I'm Lynn Cione," she said as she glided across the room with her hand extended. A surprised attendee, Nancy Levine, introduced herself to the packed room-full. "Get used to it," Lynn told the crowd. "Everything we do is about helping you grow your business."
Lynn grew up on the South Shore of Long Island. The daughter of a retired police officer has a terrible fear of guns. She graduated from Cornell University, staying a year longer for an opportunity working in prisoner's rights. The former Park Slope resident said she cried when her husband landed a job in the Hudson Valley in 1987 because she had a great apartment in Brooklyn. She added, it has ultimately been a wonderful decision moving to the Hudson Valley. The move led her to positions with the Goshen Chamber, Village board, a challenging post as Water Commissioner, and eventually Goshen Chamber President.
Sean Maloney welcomes Lynn to her Presidency at Orange County Chamber
Cione announced that her experience working for the New York City District Attorney and her familiarity with government advocacy are what landed her at the Orange County Chamber. Expect a big push for business-friendly politics under her leadership. Attending the breakfast were Michael Sweeton, Town of Warwick Supervisor; Assemblyman James Skoufis; Steve Neuhaus, Orange County Executive; Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney and former Goshen Village mayor, Scott Wohl.
Don't call her Lynn from Goshen. Yes, she is, but she's much more than that.
And she insists that we are a collective 'more' born from our stories of triumphs and trials.
"We're not going to follow. We're not going to get out of the way for anybody. We are going to lead and it's going to be because of you. I need your ideas. I need to know what it is that you want to do. I'm open for anything. You have to be creative."
Jim Smith, President, Advance Testing
Then she handed out her cell phone number to the breakfast attendees in a gesture of granting access.
Resources that have impressed Cione pertaining to the Orange County Chamber include: education, seminars, programs, networking, events and committees galore.
"What's a chamber?" she asked. "Relationships. That's why people join.
That's why we're here: We're here for you to grow your business."
Orange County Chamber support staff and ambassadors check in breakfast guests at West Hills
Cione excitedly applauded her staff who are dedicated and relentless assistants to the chamber's many business owners. She made mention of the relationship building that the county chamber does with the smaller business organizations and declared an ongoing plan which will allow for the continual building of those relationships. She had this to say about business owners:
"You took all your vision, everything you had; all your resources, all your money, all your future and you put it into your vision. That's insanely brave. Insane, but brave.
We've had to fight some gremlins for lack of a better word, economically and business-wise over the past number of years. It has been very, very difficult....but people have been able to hang on because the entrepreneurial spirit is stronger than almost anything. It's like the will to survive. So, I applaud you. "
With regard to the Hudson Valley, this former Long Islander had this to say: "Sometimes the news says doom and gloom and oh my gosh. Do you know where we live?! This is a great place."
Lynn, I want to meet with you!
Let's schedule some time when the EXPO is over and you can catch a breath.
Let me show you what I think the sharing of good news can do for the Hudson Valley and beyond!
-- Stefanie Pearl, Publisher, Happy Hudson Valley
Orange County Chamber Expo (businesses on display for all to meet and greet) is TOMORROW (9/10) from 12pm - 7pm. Free admission this year thanks to some very generous sponsors. See you there -- at Anthony's Pier 9..