September 2018
Letter from the Executive Director
As New Yorkers, we know each year really starts in September. Those fortunate enough to spend time away from Gotham over the summer come back relaxed and refreshed. That is, until they get stuck in their first Fall traffic jam - replete with school busses stopping for students, cabs cutting you off, and bikers whizzing by faster than anyone sitting behind a steering wheel. Ah, autumn in New York City, certainly not as romantic as the song.

That said, it's an energizing time of year, teeming with new businesses, fashion, and food as exemplified by the winners of the 2018 StartUP! Business Plan Competition. Victor Hunt's is helping building managers save money and time; Rebecca Deutsch's Impact Fashion brings out its new lines; and Movitsa Simmons is making great progress with her Smooth Pops healthy treats. We profiled them in this very cool video and we encourage all those eager to follow in their footsteps to enter the 2019 StartUP! that commences in October.

As we work with start-up owners, we find some who want to "start over." In a recent report, the Center for an Urban Future found that many people over 50 are seeking new challenges and new careers. The writers noted that Queens has the city's second highest number of entrepreneurs in that age category (58,597). The New York Times profiled some of these businesses, and I was delighted that they highlighted Liz Schwartz of Better Speech Now (a 2012 StartUP! winner); Stephanie Golden's Biggie's Crack Toffee; and Gordon Bennett and Barry Schwartz's Grown in Brooklyn. The latter two companies make their products in Queens - at our Entrepreneur Space incubator.

And speaking of Made in Queens, our initiative supporting locally produced and designed products will take flight very soon. Among other projects, we look forward to helping MiQ vendors sell their goods at the newly renovated Terminal B at LaGuardia Airport. We're going to be in good company.

In addition, our Entrepreneur Assistance Program (link) starts next month, the Home Improvement Contract Training program gives instruction in three languages, and Prime Skills is offered to Southeast Queens residents.

But all work and no play isn't a healthy recipe, so check out It's In Queens to find out about everything fun happening in the borough. Plus, subscribe to our weekly Its in Queens podcast with Rob MacKay and Chris Donovan. They're real Queens guys with real Queens opinions. They're certainly funnier then Michael Che and Colin Jost .

In fact, Rob and Chris have my vote to host next year's Emmy Awards broadcast.


Seth Bornstein
Executive Director
News You Can Use
In addition to killer two-handed backhands and late-match heroics, tennis fans from around the world learned about hotels, restaurants, and cultural venues in Queens during this year's U.S. Open. For the sixth year in a row, the USTA donated a kiosk to the Queens Tourism Council. Volunteers gave away such items as guidebooks, swag (branded key chains, bottle openers, etc), and subway maps while also offering tips and inside information on the borough.  Elected officials, USTA executives, local civic leaders, and employees of the Queens Chamber of Commerce and QTC gathered in front of the kiosk for a group photo on Aug. 22 .
QEDC's award-winning Women's Business Center will host the next Women's Power Networking Breakfast at The Local NYC, a top-notch hostel in Long Island City, on Thursday, Oct. 25, from 8:30 am to 11:30 am. Katie Fiore, the Head of Conversion Optimization at SYZYGY, a global digital agency based in Germany, will present a lecture entitled "Business in a Nutshell: Tools to Help You Launch Your Business." Fiore, a George Washington University graduate,  is passionate about creative problem solving and applying design thinking principles for business and social innovation . Attendance is free, but please RSVP.
Business Is Brewing
Queens is now home to more than 10 breweries. And the good news is that they are all fantastic. So it's no wonder that The NYC Brewers Guild has invited many of them to provide their products to Blocktobertfest on Saturday, Oct. 6. To take place in Brooklyn, this event will serve suds from more than 25 NYC-based breweries.
QEDC Deputy Director Ricardi Calixte leads a team that helps clients obtain M/WBE certification and offers workshops where those clients learn about how to use the status to get government contracts.
Queens Borough Hall
120-55 Queens Blvd., Ste. 309 Kew Gardens, NY 11424
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