Schenectady County business leaders cited for progress

The group behind Schenectady County Community College’s first dormitories was recognized Wednesday f

The group behind Schenectady County Community College’s first dormitories was recognized Wednesday for its help in revitalizing the county.

United Group of Companies is one of seven organizations or community leaders who will receive top honors from the Chamber of Schenectady County in its 24th annual Business Awards.

It was a rare piece of good news Wednesday for the Troy-based developer, which announced the same day that its vice chairman, James Quinn, had died from injuries sustained in a Clifton Park plane crash that two weeks earlier killed company chairman Walter Uccellini.

“We’re honored to be recognized by the chamber for such a wonderful achievement,” said UGOC Development Executive Jeffrey Buell in an email.

That achievement was the construction of a dormitory project 10 years in the making for SCCC. College Suites at Washington Square encompasses four stories and 112,000 square feet and includes 264 beds. When doors open Friday at the dorms, it will be the first time SCCC students have college housing.

At an Oct. 23 chamber ceremony at the Glen Sanders Mansion in Scotia, UGOC will receive the Renaissance Award for its contribution to the “revitalization of Schenectady County by renovating or constructing an outstanding building.”

“Not only does it provide students with a missing piece of the college experience, but in this instance it also injects new blood into the wonderful momentum that Schenectady is currently experiencing,” said Buell. “We are more than happy to be a part of it, and thrilled to call Schenectady a partner in this noble venture.”

Also recognized was More Perreca’s, the café offshoot of longtime Schenectady staple Perreca’s Bakery on Jay Street. Directly adjacent to the family-run bakery renowned for its hard-crusted bread, More Perreca’s offers breakfast, lunch and dinner reminiscent of “any Italian grandma’s kitchen.”

It received the chamber’s “Rising Star” Award, given to a business in operation for two years or less that has demonstrated commitment to the community and exhibits “potential for long-term success.”

Applied Robotics received the Tech Valley Innovation Award, which features a business demonstrating “extraordinary technical advancement,” according to the chamber. The Glenville-based company focuses on the integration and design of robotic automation equipment.

Jumpin’ Jack’s Drive-In owner Mark Lansing was recognized with the Entrepreneur of the Year Award. His popular Scotia eatery opened triumphantly this spring after considerable damage from Tropical Storm Irene last year. The chamber award deems Lansing a “natural-born leader and charismatic go-getter” of a small business enterprise.

The Executive of the Year Award honoring leadership in a large organization goes to Mark Little, senior vice president and chief technology officer for GE.

The Enterprise of the Year Award goes to Benchemark Printing, which recently acquired nearly two acres near its Schenectady facility to expand and add 12 new jobs over the next three years. The award recognizes a business with 100 employees or less distinguishing itself through achievements in growth and management.

Corporation of the Year was awarded to the Capital District Transportation Authority for its achievements in growth and management, as well. The corporation boasts more than 100 employees.

The chamber also will honor MVP Health Care’s David Oliker, who will soon retire from his post as president and CEO.

A committee of chamber members selected the award recipients, and included Nell Burrows of Upper Union Street and Scotia Business Improvement Districts; Scott Cietek, of the Schenectady County Metroplex Development Authority; John Halstead, of Zalucki & Halstead; Bill Mather Sr., of HMS Agency; and Ray Seefeld, of Superior Business Products.

Categories: Business

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