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IMPACT: Crafting a Thriving Venture for the New Economy

  • Etsy Hudson 359-361 Columbia Street Hudson, NY 12534 (map)

Presented by

Antidote Collective  +  On Belay Business Advisors

In partnership with

Etsy  +  Re>Think Local

A series of 6 workshops that provide universal tools and ideas for "craft" entrepreneurs and local businesses at all levels.

What do we mean by "craft" entrepreneurs? Not only those who do crafts — like artists and artisans. It's a sensibility describing anyone who cares deeply about their enterprise and brings skill and passion to it.

With social/environmental/personal values (Localism, Triple Bottom Line), inner awareness, community vision (and community building) woven throughout, these workshops do more than give you tools and tactics. They help you be what you want — with purpose.

Each hands-on workshop — limited to 40 participants — is led by a topic expert (and the series facilitators) and includes a mindfulness exercise, individual exercises, and opportunities to share ideas with your peers throughout.

Craft your impact — for yourself, your venture and your community.

Who Should Attend?

  • Etsy sellers
  • nonprofiteers
  • artisan retailers
  • makers/boutique manufacturers
  • restaurateurs
  • hospitality, lodging, tourism 
  • local retailers
  • service businesses

Limited to 40 participants.


Oct 5  /  Visioning + Branding
Scott Tillitt
determining purpose and strategic direction, aligning your brand with your purpose, creating a high-impact brand system

Oct 12  /  Communicating Your Value(s)
Ajax Greene
mindful, goal-oriented selling of yourself through language (verbal and written), passion, and posture

Oct 19  /  Marketing
Melissa Gibson
sales, advertising, online marketing and social media, marketing plan, marketing your values

Oct 26  /  Accounting + Finance Issues
Sarah Jacob
What’s a P&L, a KPI? Why should you care? Learn how to create financial health and well-being for your business. Make friends with your numbers.

Nov 2  /  Legal Strategies
Gary Schuster
intellectual property, partner contracts, benefit corporations, Community Capital (Direct Public Offerings, crowdfunding)

Nov 9  /  Personal Leadership
Colette Ruoff
growing yourself to grow your business, giving feedback, engaging in difficult conversations

Schedule subject to change. People listed are the lead presenters (bios below). All workshops are co-facilitated by Ajax Greene and Scott Tillitt.

Workshops are Mondays, 6 – 9 PM. Light food and beverages provided.


Individual workshops: $70

Series: $375 / $300 for partners (Etsy sellers and members of Re>Think Local, BEAHIVE, Columbia Chamber) **

Scholarships: reduced fee of $195 for the series (a $180 savings) or $35 per individual workshop (50% off), compliments of Etsy.

Light food and beverages included.

** For the Etsy sellers discount, sellers must have an existing shop on

A portion of the proceeds will support Re>Think Local, a nonprofit collaborative of locally owned independent businesses, artists, farmers, and nonprofits co-creating a better Hudson Valley.


Melissa Gibson
President/CEO / New In Town

Melissa is a seasoned marketing and business development professional with over 20 years of experience. With degrees in Agriculture Economics and Management from Cornell University and a Masters of Brand Management from the University of Georgia, Melissa began her career with a pioneering database marketing company and then went on to found her own business development consulting firm, New In Town. She continues to work with individuals, businesses and organizations seeking to acquire new customers and successfully nurture and build brand equity, with a special emphasis on grassroots growth platforms, small business collaborative marketing and innovative idea generation.

Ajax Greene
Founder/CEO / On Belay Business Advisors
Co-founder + Vice Chair / Re>Think Local

Ajax is a well-known and respected serial social entrepreneur, triple bottom line and localism evangelist, trusted generalist business advisor, and connector of confidential business transactions. He has turned his abundant creativity, talent and positive energy to building organizations and a community that expresses a deep commitment to being conscious of the triple bottom line of people, planet and prosperity. He is a co-producer of Social Venture Institute / Hudson Valley, a weekend retreat for world-changing social entrepreneurs.

Sarah Jacob
Founder / EssJay Consulting

Sarah founded EssJay Consulting in 2011 and works with small businesses in the Hudson Valley as an outside Chief Financial Officer. She provides financial leadership and analysis to bring the clarity business owners need to thrive and grow. She previously spent four years as a portfolio manager for TA Associates Realty and managed a $1 billion portfolio of commercial real estate assets. Prior to that she spent four years as a financial analyst for Fidelity Investments. Sarah graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BS in Finance from the University of Connecticut.

Colette Ruoff
Founder / Terra Nova Facilitation and Consulting
President / SageArts

Colette is a seasoned Leadership Development specialist with 17 years experience in leading workshops for global corporations such as McKinsey and WPP as well as smaller organizations such as The Robin Hood Foundation, BALLE and New Island Capital. Her organizational consulting firm, Terra Nova, provides consulting services, leadership development and coaching to social entrepreneurs to support them in building their leadership and aligning their people behind their mission. She has a MBA from NYU, is a Gestalt Psychotherapist and is a Certified Integral Coach. In 2014 Colette launched a local nonprofit arts organization called SageArts, which brings singer-songwriters together with local elders to write a song about the elders' lives.

Gary Schuster
Senior Counsel / Jacobowitz & Gubits, LLP
Co-founder + Board Member /  Re>Think Local

Gary’s varied law practice includes formation, transactions and counseling for corporations, LLCs, partnerships and many kinds of not-for-profiits; purchases and sales of businesses; commercial and residential real estate transactions and leasing; franchising; estate planning, administration and litigation; guardianship proceedings; and media, copyright and trademark. He has been a leader in educating the public about New York’s new benefit corporation. He also has extensive experience in music and art, which includes past employment with ASCAP, The Songwriters Guild of America, Dunvagen Music Publishers (owned by the composer, Philip Glass) and Knoedler Publishing (publishers of the artist, LeRoy Neiman). He has represented clients in art, music, film, video, dance, theater, photography, fashion modeling, publishing, the internet, museums and arts centers.

Scott Tillitt
Founder / Antidote Collective + BEAHIVE
Co-founder + Board Chair / Re>Think Local

Equal parts strategist, publicist, marketer, social entrepreneur, nonprofit leader, and writer, Scott has an insatiable interest in big ideas and the behaviors that drive people, what resonates with them, and how to communicate with them. He has 20+ years of experience and a broad perspective promoting ideas, products and services in various culture-shaping domains. He's instrumental in a social enterprise, a nonprofit, and various projects and community engagements that are focused on making the Hudson Valley a more vibrant, sustainable, locally-rooted and human-scale place to live and work. Scott is a co-producer of Social Venture Institute / Hudson Valley, a weekend retreat for world-changing social entrepreneurs.

Promotional Partners



Schumacher Center For New Economics

Schumacher Center For New Economics

Columbia County Chamber of Commerce

Columbia County Chamber of Commerce

Columbia Economic Development Corp

Columbia Economic Development Corp