LEGOLAND Builds Management Team; The James Brown Family Foundation Takes Home CountryRoad Communications; K12 Alerts Patents Urgent School-Notification Platform

Iryna Lomaga Carey

Revolving Door


Iryna Lomaga Carey, an expert in commercial real estate law with an extensive background in shopping-center leasing and acquisitions, has joined the real estate department of Kurzman Eisenberg Corbin & Lever, LLP, as partner. Ms. Carey will continue to focus her practice on commercial real estate transactions, such as commercial sales and acquisitions, joint ventures, commercial leasing and commercial finance.

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LSW Chauffeured Transportation has announced the promotion of John D’Agostino to fleet and driver manager. In this new position, John will be responsible for recruiting new LSW drivers, as well as creating a comprehensive ongoing training program to educate employees on everything from proper dress code to safety regulations. In this role, John will also administer employees’ records and ensure compliance of all regulations, as well as developing and managing LSW’s rigorous vehicle-maintenance system.

LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester, which opens at Ridge Hill in Yonkers in March, has announced the trio of executives leading the new family destination.

Chris Mines, general manager, recently served as head of Operations at Madame Tussauds Las Vegas and as commercial manager for Madame Tussauds New York. Before crossing the pond, Chris was the business manager for all retail at the British Airways London Eye (now the The EDF Energy London Eye). He graduated from Bradford University with a bachelor of science degree in history and politics, and earned his master’s in Heritage Management from Birmingham University.

Monique Perretti, marketing manager, is a Westchester native, and comes to LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester following positions as marketing and entertainment manager at Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway and marketing coordinator for Wusthof-Trident of America, Inc. She also has worked for several media companies, including VH1 and Track Entertainment. Perretti graduated from Manhattanville College with a bachelor’s degree in arts management and communications, and is currently pursuing her MBA in communications and media management and marketing from Fordham University.

Charles Graytok, finance manager, started his career with Merlin Entertainments in January 2011 at Madame Tussauds New York before coming on board at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester. Before Merlin Entertainments, Charles worked for various companies in the entertainment industry, including Blue Man Group and Manhattan Theatre Club. He graduated from Wheeling Jesuit University with a bachelor’s in business management and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in accounting.

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First Niagara Financial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:FNFG) has promoted Avi Patel to serve as the multi-state bank’s chief marketing officer. As CMO, Patel is responsible for First Niagara’s branding and marketing strategies, as well as management of departments and agency partners tasked with implementing those strategies through traditional and interactive advertising, marketing and promotions. Prior to joining First Niagara in 2011, he served as a vice president of Wilmington Trust Co. in Delaware.

The Katonah Museum of Art’s Board of Trustees has announced the appointment of Belinda Roth as interim executive director as of Dec. 3, 2012. Roth, a resident of Katonah, has worked as development officer at the museum since 2008. She received her BA in art history from Williams College, an MA in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU, and an MBA in marketing, management and strategy from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University. Prior to joining the museum, she was a marketing manager at American Express.

The Ritz-Carlton, Westchester, recently welcomed Madelyn Bader as public relations/sales coordinator. Prior to joining the Ritz-Carlton, Bader honed her skills at Abigail Michaels Concierge, a concierge service for luxury apartment buildings in New York City, and MARQUEE, a New York City nightclub. In her new position, she is responsible for coordinating all media efforts, as well as the development of marketing and promotional materials. Additionally, she supports all outreach efforts to bolster the property’s reputation and image within the community.

The Westchester Library System (WLS) has named Amanda Goodman to the organization’s board of trustees. Goodman serves as the District X representative, covering Port Chester, Rye Brook, Rye City and Rye Town. Goodman is the executive director of Beaute Prestige International, a division of Shiseido Cosmetics in New York City. She attended Montclair State College in New Jersey, receiving a bachelor of science degree in business administration. Goodman has spent her career in the sales and sales management area working for cosmetics and fragrance companies with major retailers such as Saks, Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s. She has concentrated on building tailored programs for these accounts to increase revenue and market share.

Doug KitchenDoug Kitchen, the Connecticut account representative for A.G. Williams Painting Company, was recently named to the Board of the Connecticut chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). Kitchen, who previously served as the Society’s liaison for industry partners, joins the eight-member board as a member at large. Kitchen has been a member of the A.G. Williams management team since July 2010.

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The James Brown Family Foundation has retained Mount Kisco-based CountryRoad Communications to manage publicity for the Foundation’s various charitable outreach programs. The appointment dovetails with the announcement that rock legend Mick Jagger and film and television producer Brian Grazer (A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13) will co-produce a biopic chronicling the life of the Godfather of Soul. Deanna Brown-Thomas, daughter of James Brown and president of the James Brown Family Foundation, envisions a PR campaign that will highlight milestones of the film’s production, as well as to raise visibility for the foundation.

The Business Council of Westchester (BCW) has issued a call for nominations for The Westchester County Business Hall of Fame, presented by MasterCard Worldwide and Entergy. Established in 2002, the Business Hall of Fame awards program recognizes the lifetime achievements of Westchester County businesses in five categories: small business, entrepreneurs, corporate citizens, family-owned companies and women in business. Members of the business community are encouraged to nominate a client, colleague, vendor, friend, or their own business; nominees do not have to be Business Council members. Nominations are accepted online only, at, and must be submitted by Jan. 11, 2013.

Linda Whitehead, a partner with McCullough Goldberger & Staudt, LLP, and Associate Ari Tran successfully secured municipal approvals from the City of Rye to allow Serendipity Labs, Inc., to convert the former Biltmore Jeep dealership into a members-only office. The approvals make possible the adaptive reuse of an underutilized property. The former car dealership at 80 Theodore Fremd Avenue has been converted to a 7,000-square-foot location that offers members access to private enclave spaces, shared workspaces, meeting rooms, collaboration studios, “workbars,” and a lab-café and a lounge area. The new facility opened in November for use by members and their guests.



Pam Hart, a published poet and the Katonah Museum of Art’s writer-in-residence, has been awarded an NEA Creative Writing Fellowship. Hart was one of 40 individuals to receive the Fellowship out of 1,137 applicants. The Fellowship, a cash award of $25,000, will fund Hart’s poetry writing over the course of the next two years as she continues working on a book project that is already underway.

On its 10th anniversary, White Plains-based K12 Alerts, a national provider of emergency and routine communications, has been awarded US Patent No. 8,180,274 for its comprehensive messaging system, “Managing and Messaging Critical Student Information.” The system delivers voice, email, and text messages to parents of students or staff members in any situation. It also empowers school officials to upload student emergency and medical contact information at any time to create unique group identifiers for instant group emergency notifications.

Dominican Sisters Family Health Services recently recognized Geoffrey Thompson and Elizabeth Bracken-Thompson of Croton-on-Hudson for their community leadership roles and dedication to serving and supporting others in the community. The couple was presented with the 2012 Mother Mary Walsh Award at the organization’s 20th anniversary luncheon held recently at Tappan Hill in Tarrytown. The Thompsons are partners of Thompson & Bender, a public relations and marketing agency located in Briarcliff Manor.

Mount Kisco Child Care Center (MKCCC) recently partnered with Junior League of Northern Westchester (JLNW) to give to families in need during the 32nd Annual Holiday Sharing Drive. The Holiday Sharing Drive is JLNW’s signature philanthropic effort that delivers food, clothing, and gifts to more than 250 families in need, including several from MKCCC during the holiday season. Moving trucks, donated by Whalen’s Moving & Storage, pick up the donated goods from the storage facility at the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Westchester in Mount Kisco. The goods are transported to MKCCC, where members of the Yorktown High School varsity hockey team unload the boxes to be stored and distributed.



Westchester (barely) works out a 2013 budget and the controversial design picked to replace the Tappan Zee Bridge.

While the most recent meeting between President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner yielded no progress (as of this writing) towards a deal to avoid the so-called “fiscal cliff,” County Executive Robert P. Astorino signed a budget for 2013 that he characterized as a “responsible compromise” that includes no increase in the County property tax levy or any raiding of the County’s fund balance.

In a tense exchange, the Westchester County Association had previously charged that the attempt by the Westchester County Board of Legislators to withdraw $16 million from the County’s reserve fund to balance the 2013 budget would jeopardize the County’s Triple-A credit rating, causing job loss, reduction in essential services and future deficits. The WCA also questioned the transparency of the proceedings by giving residents no time to comment on their budget proposal.

Controversy also permeated discussions surrounding the proposed new form of the Tappan Zee Bridge, as Governor Cuomo and State officials presented three design finalists. The three conceptual designs were offered by three bidders vying to replace the existing span. With the final decision hanging in the balance, Tappan Zee Constructors won the State’s advisory committee recommendation. Offering the least expensive design at $3.1 billion, the consortium, which includes the company that built the current crossing more than five decades ago, offered a suggested design marked by strangely angled H-shaped towers on each span.



Property: 50 Main St., Westchester Financial Center, White Plains

Brokered by: Jeffrey Warner, vice president of Leasing, Mack-Cali (914) 593-7910;

Availability: 55,800
square feet (700 to 22,500)

Selling points: A downtown office building across from the White Plains Metro-North station, the property features excellent access to I-287, I-87, Bronx River Parkway, and Metro-North. The building has 24/7 access, with a library, the courthouse, and the Galleria Shopping Mall one block away. Adjacent to retail services and plazas, and across from the railroad and bus station, the building is 35 minutes to Grand Central by express train. The lobby features two-tone polished granite walls, thermal granite floors, and a two-story atrium with mezzanine served by a floating stairway from the main floor. The atrium houses the Robert Martin Gallery, an art gallery open to the lobby.



MONDAY, 1/13/13
The Power of E-Mail Marketing

Webster Bank, 1 N. Broadway, White Plains; noon – 2 pm; $20 per person (includes catered lunch). This members-only event will feature guest speaker Ellen DePasquale, regional development director of Constant Contact, who will discuss how to create strong business relationships using easy and inexpensive email marketing techniques. The seminar will explore the basics of what email marketing is, why it works, how it integrates with social networking sites, and how to use it in your business planning and marketing strategy to achieve special goals. Space is limited to the first 20 PWW members to register.,

MONDAY, 1/17/13
Business After Business

Microsoft Store, 125 Westchester Ave., White Plains; 5 – 7pm. Join long-time and new members of the Business Council of Westchester (BCW) as they gather for an evening of networking at the new interactive Microsoft store at The Westchester. Member tickets are $25 for those who pre-register; $30 at the door. Future Member tickets are $40 for those who pre-register; $45 at the door. To pre-register, go to

MONDAY, 1/23/13
Speed Networking

Doubletree Hotel Tarrytown, 455 S. Broadway, Tarrytown; noon – 2 pm. Ring in the New Year with new connections. Meet other business leaders and professionals at this BCW event, where you will have a chance to speed-network with 10 or more connections. Each connection will last three to four minutes, to be split between you and your partner. Attendees will have the opportunity to reconnect with those people they would like to have a more in-depth conversation with, as well as meet other attending business professionals over a light lunch for the second portion of the event. Register at

WEDNESDAY, 1/30/13
Business & Law Taxes Workshop

120 Bloomingdale Road, White Plains; 1 – 3 pm.. Presented by SCORE Westchester, the workshop will cover which business structure to use and why, the cost of forming a corporation, the necessity of a written partnership or shareholders agreement, the tax deductibility of home-office expenses, lease provisions to look for, and many other salient topics. Call (914) 948 3907 or visit for details.

Marketing, Advertising, and PR

120 Bloomingdale Road, White Plains; 1 – 3 pm.  Presented by SCORE Westchester, the workshop will offer insights on the basics of market research and analysis, creating a marketing plan, defining advertising objectives, overview options to get the word out, discussion of costs, and when PR may be appropriate and possible. Call (914) 948 3907 or visit for details.


Do you have tips, scoop, or gossip concerning business in Westchester? If so, our INComing blogger, Lisa Cesarano, is all ears. Please e-mail her with a short pitch to

Upcoming events should be submitted no later than Sunday, December 30, to be considered for the January 8 edition. Please submit business-related events only; no fundraisers or consumer events.


Our Wine & Food Festival returns June 4-9!

Our Wunderkinds event takes place on May 23!

Our Best of Business Ballot is open through May 15!

Our Healthcare Heroes Awards event takes place on May 9!

Our Westchester Home Builders Awards take place on April 4!

Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Forum is March 14!

Unveiled: A Boutique Bridal Brunch is February 25!

Our Best of Westchester Elimination Ballot is open through March 6!

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