Welcome to the Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce, celebrating 30 years of supporting our residents and the business community in Schoharie County. At the heart of every local economy and the backbone of the nation’s economy, you will find a Chamber of Commerce. The Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce focuses on a broad range of events and programs that provide Advocacy,Education and Economic Growth to support its businesses and the community. When you are looking for information or a way to be connected in Schoharie County, look no further, because the Chamber has something for everyone. Together we can continue to make Schoharie County the best place to live, work and play!
The Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce is an organization of business people and other leaders working together to advance the general welfare and prosperity of our community through our endeavors with business, including agriculture, education, government, and tourism.
Board of Directors:
Jamie Casterlin, President
Executive Committee, Economic Advancement, Events Committee, Membership Committee
National Bank of Coxsackie
Jamie Casterlin is a business development officer with National Bank of Coxsackie. Jamie has 15 plus years’ experience in residential and commercial lending throughout Capital Region NY. Jamie is also a member of various community organizations including the Middleburgh Area Business Association, Middleburgh Rotary, West Fulton Arts and Albany County Rural Housing Association.
LeeAnn is a Branch Manager for NBT Bank. With 19 years of banking experience, starting her career as a teller with Central National Bank in 1998. She is a lifelong resident of Schoharie County and serves on several boards in the Schoharie Area, including the Schoharie Community Development and the Schoharie County ARC Foundation.
Georgia Van Dyke, 2nd Vice President
Executive Committee, Events, Economic Advancement, Business and Education Committee
Gobbler’s Knob Family Fun Park
Georgia relocated to Schoharie County from North Babylon, LI in 1986 when she worked for the New York State Nurses Association. She continued to work for the Association as a Nursing Representative and Organizer, and after 21 years of service Georgia retired in 2004. In March of 2005 SUNY Cobleskill recognized Georgia as one of six “Notable Women of Schoharie County”. Georgia is also active in the Town of Wright, Schoharie Valley Lions Club – President 2015, SALT – Co-chair, and Chair of Unmet Needs Roundtable.
In 2003 Georgia established “The Darryl West Van Dyke Memorial Fund” through the Community Foundation of the Capital District. This fund supplies AED’s (portable defibrillators) to businesses and churches throughout Schoharie County. To date the fund has donated ten defibrillators.
Since 2002 Georgia has been president of Van Dyke Enterprises Inc. which, oversees “Gobbler’s Knob Family Fun Park”. Gobbler’s Knob opened in 2001 with a Driving Range and Club house. By 2006 the family business had expanded to and 18-hole lighted miniature golf featuring “Schoharie County Landmarks”. Additionally in 2006 the Ice Cream Parlor/Snack Bar opened and Robert Strong opened the “Muscle Motors Speedway” Go-cart Track.
2009 brought a nine-hole Par 3 course named “D’s Tees” in memory of Darryl Van Dyke. 2011 brought a Bungee Trampoline. The trampoline was replaced by a “Bounce House” in 2014.
In 2009 the County reclaimed Tourism from the Chamber. Shortly after that in early 2010 the Chamber experienced many internal changes. The Chamber’s Executive Director left unexpectedly, thus as Chamber Board President, Georgia stepped into that role for the next three years. At the end of Georgia’s term as Board President, she was then hired as part-time Executive Director in 2014. During this time period the Chamber membership grew with 40 new members, a new more user friendly website, a revitalized Business EXPO.
Georgia looks forward to supporting businesses in Schoharie County and the continued growth of the Chamber.
Eric Efthimiou – Treasurer
Agricultural Business Representative
Farm Family Insurance
Christopher J. Guldner
Director, Tourism Committee Chair
Chris Guldner is an experienced business owner, consultant and facilitator. While serving in the US Navy as a nuclear reactor operator, electronics technician and instructor, he earned a B.S. in Human Resources Management. Entering the civilian world, he worked in various industries throughout North America as an instructor, manager and workplace performance improvement consultant. He founded and operated a chain of three restaurants Saratoga County while actively participating in local organizations focused on economic development and tourism including the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce and the Saratoga Convention & Tourism Bureau. In an organizational development capacity, he helped facilitate and draft a 10 year strategic plan for Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory and their parent company, Bechtel Marine Propulsion Corporation. Through Fulton Montgomery Community College, he serves various businesses (including WalMart Distribution Center, Beech Nut and KeyMark Corp.) in the region by providing management and leadership training and consulting. He currently owns the Bull’s Head Inn restaurant in Cobleskill which has received awards for Best New Business of the Year (Schoharie Chamber of Commerce), Best Restaurant in Schoharie County (Capital Region Living Magazine) and Citizen of the Year (Cobleskill Rotary). He has been chairing the Tourism Committee for the Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce since 2014. He has a demonstrated track record of business development and leadership within the hospitality & tourism industry and beyond.
Shannon Almy – Secretary
Fenimore Asset Management
Shannon Almy was raised in Schoharie County and currently resides in Sharon Springs with her husband, Keith. She enjoys volunteering, and is actively involved in her local church. Shannon is an alumni from the Cobleskill Central School, and SUNY Cobleskill, and having completed an MBA from the University at Albany. Shannon is the Client Relationship Manager at Fenimore Asset Management, Inc. and has been with the company since 2002.
New York Power Authority
Jessica Kirby is the Community Relations Supervisor for the NY Power Authority Blenheim- Gilboa Visitors Center and Lansing Manor. From 2012 to 2019, she was the Managing Director of Apple Barrel Country Store & Café. Prior to that, Jessica has been a Cruise Sales Consultant at Cruise.co.uk and Banking Advisor for Halifax Bank in Redditch, England.
Jessica was born and raised in Schoharie County. She is a 2000 graduate of Schoharie High School and attended Keuka College in the Finger Lakes. She has spent 10 years living in California and England before returning to Schoharie in 2012. She is a dual British American citizen.
Community involvement is extremely important to Jessica. Besides being on the Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors she is also on the Board of Directors for Schoharie Valley Association and President of the Reflections Memorial Foundation. Jessica has previously been a committee member for NY Rising Community Reconstruction Program, and member of the SALT PR & Marketing Committee, Schoharie Alliance, and Schoharie County Business Generators Group, as well as, an EMT Aide for Scho- Wright Ambulance.
Business & Education Committee
SUNY Cobleskill Liberty Partnerships Program
Deborah Veith is the Director of the SUNY Cobleskill Liberty Partnerships Program, a New York State Education Department grant-funded dropout prevention program for area middle- and high-school-aged students. Deborah grew up in the hilltowns of Albany County, graduating from the Berne-Knox-Westerlo High School. She has spent the last 25 years serving youth and families in Schoharie County, where she raised two children with her husband, Sherwood Veith. Deborah has an A.A. from SUNY Cobleskill, a B.S. from SUNY Empire State College, and a M.S. from The Sage Colleges. She has served on the Boards of the Schoharie County Community Action Program and the Schoharie County Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse.
Dr. Susan Zimmerman
SUNY Cobleskill Provost
Events Committee, Membership Committee
Schoharie County ARC
John Goldswer II joins the Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce in January of 2018 bringing with him extensive business experience in multiple fields including the advertising, marketing, print media, sales, customer service and management.
John joins us from the Schoharie County ARC as their Assistant Director of New Pathways Employment Services. He is responsible for the overall operations of Employment and Vocational Services. He acts as point of contact for ARC/Employment Services including by not limited to areas such as program admissions, program development and work site evaluation.
John leads the department by • Assisting in the development of employment strategies • Business, school and community relations • Interviewing, retention and overall work place culture of the department staff
John, a graduate of Richmondville Central School and Cazenovia College, looks forward to being involved with the growth of the Schoharie County business community.