Author Archives: Ben Jacobs

Rochester Biz Conversations: Jerome Underwood, Action for a Better Community


Jerome Underwood, president and CEO of Action for a Better Community, joins the RBJ to discuss ABC’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the recent “Racism is a Public Health Crisis — Attacking the 2 Pandemics” virtual conference, the obstacles to addressing ...

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Rochester Biz Conversations: Erica Mangers, Watermark Retirement Communities


Erica Mangers, an executive director with Watermark Retirement Communities, joins the RBJ to talk about Watermark’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the organization’s approach to vaccinations, silver linings from the past year and more. WATCH VIDEO This item is part of ...

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A year like no other (access required)

Cars line up to enter the COVID-19 testing tents at Rochester General Hospital in March. (Photo by Kate Melton)

When the RBJ began soliciting input from readers on the top local business stories of 2020, there was little doubt about what would garner the most votes. The COVID-19 pandemic changed business, and life in general, in ways large and ...

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Rochester Biz Conversations: Rep. Joseph Morelle


Rep. Joseph Morelle joins the RBJ for a discussion about COVID-19, legislative priorities, and more. Editor’s Note: Because of technical difficulties, the recording of this interview was interrupted. This item is part of Rochester Business Journal’s video series, Rochester Biz ...

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United Way of Greater Rochester receives historic $20M gift (access required)


The United Way of Greater Rochester on Tuesday announced that it is receiving a $20 million commitment from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott. This one-time, unrestricted grant is the largest single philanthropic gift in United Way’s history. “This is an amazing, historic moment ...

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Baldwin Richardson Foods names Erin Tolefree president (access required)

Erin Tolefree

Baldwin Richardson Foods, a manufacturer of custom food and beverage ingredients, has named Erin Tolefree president. Eric G. Johnson, who had served as president and CEO, will remain as CEO. Tolefree, who joined the company in 2001 as a national ...

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Rochester Biz Conversations: Aqua Porter, Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative


Aqua Porter, executive director of the Rochester-Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative, joins the RBJ to discuss her organization's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, her goals for 2021, the Rochester business community's engagement with the 21-Day Racial Equity Challenge, and more.

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Wealth management and business banking help drive modern day ESL (access required)

Marcelina Nobrega Courtney, ESL's senior vice president of retail banking. (Matt Wittmeyer)

For over 75 years, ESL Federal Credit Union stuck to a traditional consumer banking formula that worked well for the bank, for Eastman Kodak employees and, ultimately, the entire Rochester community. The expansion of services offered into wealth management in ...

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Rochester Biz Conversations: Stefani LiDestri, LiDestri Food and Drink, and Pauly Guglielmo, Guglielmo Sauce


Stefani LiDestri of LiDestri Food and Drink and Pauly Guglielmo of Guglielmo Sauce join the RBJ to talk about their companies’ response to COVID-19, how the pandemic is affecting the food manufacturing industry overall, their silver linings moving forward and more. ...

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