Accelerate! Hudson Valley

Thank you to all of our attendees, speakers, startups, partners and investors for making Accelerate Hudson Valley a success!

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Registered Attendee Information

If you’re attending the event in-person:

Location: Revel 32: 32 Cannon St, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601

Time: 11:00am

Parking: There are municipal parking lots on Cannon Street and Academy Street. The Cannon Street lot is in front of Revel 32 and the Academy Street lot is in front of The Academy

Review the guest list and start networking now! Check your emails from Upstate Capital and Think Dutchess for information on how to access this portion of the event

If you’re joining the event online:

The event takes place on our online platform. Check your emails from Upstate Capital and Think Dutchess for instructions on how to sign in. Join at 11AM if you’ve scheduled online meetings, or at 11:30pm to watch the program on the Stream

Event Details & Agenda

When: September 15, 2022

Where: Revel 32, Poughkeepsie NY or online

Registration: Secure your ticket here

Overview: Think Dutchess and Upstate Capital present Accelerate Hudson Valley, an event highlighting the start-up community in Dutchess County and beyond. The event introduces a unique and vetted pipeline of entrepreneurial talent to the local community and potential investors. Join us as new businesses advance from ideation to realization.


11:00 AM: Registration & Networking Opens

11:30 AM: Keynote with Geraldine Laybourne

Geraldine is a cable pioneer, TV visionary and network founder for some of the most iconic names in the industry such as Nickelodeon, Disney/ABC Cable Networks and Oxygen Media. Named as one of Time Magazine’s Most Influential People in 1996 and inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 2020, she now focuses her work in the city of Poughkeepsie as the co-founder of DAY ONE Early Learning Community – an innovative project creating early learning opportunities aimed at eradicating generational poverty.

She currently serves on the board of directors of 9 Story, Common Sense Growth, Katapult Studio and Betaworks, and is Vice Chairman of the board of Vital Voices. She previously served on the board of directors at Vassar College, JCPenney, Electronic Arts, Symantec,, Insight Communications, and Kindercare.


12:30 PM: Walking Tours & Lunch at The Academy Food Hall

Remaining within blocks of Revel 32, this walking tour will visit transformative businesses in the area. Each stop has roots than run deep in the Hudson Valley, showcasing local innovation, talent and success. This tour will include Uncharted, MASS Design Group and The Academy (where lunch will be provided), with a representative from each stop providing insight into the company and local projects. Walk with us to learn more!

The Academy Food Hall & Coworking Space: The Academy breathes new life into the central business district of the City of Poughkeepsie. The development embodies the live-work-play focus and encompasses a co-working space, a food hall, a grocery & fresh food market, a coffee shop, a restaurant & bar, and a stunning event space all under one roof. The food hall unites diverse eateries within a communal dining space while showcasing multiple vendors with a variety of affordable and delicious food, made with the highest quality local ingredients.

 MASS Design Group: MASS is partnering with the Dutchess County government and a robust coalition of Poughkeepsie stakeholders as architect and project lead for the Youth Opportunity Union (YOU). The YOU re-establishes a former YMCA site as a community and recreation resource that can be a safe, structured and horizon-expanding space for Poughkeepsie and Dutchess County youth and families. More than just a building, the Youth Opportunity Union represents a comprehensive, cradle-to-career commitment to giving children and young people the best possible start in life.

Uncharted: Uncharted is an award-winning, Platform as a Service company that helps cities and developers reduce the cost and complexity of deploying and managing last mile infrastructure. Using their proprietary technology platform to fuse data, Uncharted helps cities access smart city insights at a fraction of the typical cost so every city has the opportunity to be a smart city. In partnership with the City of Poughkeepsie, the Poughkeepsie pilot program included the development of a digital twin and the deployment of edge infrastructure to reduce the cost of final-mile infrastructure and data management.

Please note, the walking tour is not required. An alternative lunch and agenda option will be available for those not on the tours.


Roundtable Conversations

With each discussion facilitated by a Hudson Valley industry expert, the Accelerate Hudson Valley Roundtables will focus on 4 diverse topics ranging from Food-Based Business Plans to Funding Fundamentals.


3:00 PM: High Growth Startup Pitches with Investor Q&A Panel

Introducing the Startups

Busie | The easiest way to bring your charter business online

Busie is building the operating system for group ground transportation helping operators launch e-commerce, digitize inventory and pricing, and open up direct integrations with various demand channels. We take this currently offline industry and bring it into the digital age. An easy way to think about what we do is we are a combo of Shopify and Amadeus (or insert relevant GDS system here). Learn more on Busie’s website.


ClothesLyne | A Laundry Community

Clotheslyne has created a laundry community where, in just 5 minutes, a customers can easily and inexpensively outsource their laundry demands while simultaneously providing a fair and equitable entrepreneur experience for local service providers. We have taken the laundry industry and made it scalable by introducing a pool of new omnipresent service providers. Learn more on Clotheslyne’s website.


ConConnect | The first professional networking platform for the formerly Incarcerated

ConConnect connects formerly incarcerated people to employers and services through professional networking technology. And streamlines work for caseworkers and social workers through a best-in-class CRM to enhance their client and organizational outcomes. Learn more on ConConnect’s website.


cue | Event Management Platform for Event Pros

cue is the next-generation event management platform addressing pain points for event professionals through innovative design and deep understanding of the event industry. Learn more on cue’s website.


Edenesque | Clean. Simple. Artisanal Plant-Based Milks

Edenesque makes outrageously delicious plant-based milks that reflect our company’s core values. We manufacture oat, almond, pistachio and cashew. Learn more on Edenesque’s website.


Fortmesa | Make your business a security business

FortMesa provides cybersecurity program orchestration software to IT service providers. FortMesa enables IT providers to sell, plan, deliver, and document cybersecurity roadmaps to their small and medium sized business customers. Learn more on FortMesa’s website.


Rebelbase | Easy-to-use project-learning platform

RebelBase harnesses the power of people who know what’s broken, by guiding them as they build new solutions using our B2B2C SaaS platform. Our “project builder” modules guide teams as they refine new solutions and engage communities around them while putting the power of innovation in everyone’s hands. Learn more on RebelBase’s wesbite.


USEFUZE INC | Success Re-Defined!

USEFUZE is a mobile platform that helps skilled workers in building, managing, and growing their business or side hustle.The truth that no one is talking about is that the freedom and flexibility over your work-life isn’t free, today’s worker is facing a new set of challenges. Learn more on USEFUZE’s website.


Meet the Investor Panel

Leon Greene: Leon Greene is a repeat founder and executive with over 25 years of diverse experience: product, strategy, operations, technology, and finance. He is a Managing Partner of the Hudson Valley Startup Fund, and serves as Board Member and advisor for two portfolio companies. Before entrepreneurship, he held executive and operational leadership roles at a fortune 1000 real estate company and he helped build a leading internet services provider.

Debi Jantzen: Debi Jantzen is a Senior Associate at Decisive Point and spearheads Investor Relations and Fund Administration for the firm. Previously, Debi worked at NationSwell, a social impact media company that consulted with corporations, foundations and nonprofits on their Corporate Social Responsibility and impact campaigns. Debi is a founding junior advisory board member of Women in Funds, a community for women in the investment fund space.

Marcia Mitchell: Marcia Mitchell is a Director at NY Ventures (NYS Innovation Venture Capital Fund). NY Ventures supports and invests in diverse entrepreneurs and their high-growth companies across the state to secure a healthy, sustainable and economically vibrant future for all New Yorkers. Before NY Ventures, Marcia was a Senior Associate at ff Venture Capital, an early-stage VC firm based in NYC.


4:00 PM: Placemaking & Entrepreneurship Panel – Building & Investing in Community

The Placemaking & Entrepreneurship Panel will bring together business leaders who have firsthand experience building and investing in the local community. As experts in real estate development and entrepreneurship, each of these panelists will share how their local projects facilitate entrepreneurship and discuss key topics that you do not want to miss!

Eric Baxter: As Vice President of Baxter, Eric is responsible for implementing development, construction, and partnership strategies. Under his stewardship these divisions have seen significant growth and have quickly established Baxter as a leader in the real estate development and construction community. Eric successfully executed the state’s first Participation Loan Program (PLP) loan to introduce affordable units to Newburgh through Baxter’s joint venture project WireWorks. He is highly regarded for his ability to generate opportunity for small businesses throughout the region.

Joseph Kirchhoff: Joseph T. Kirchhoff is the Principal and CEO of Kirchhoff Companies, an integrated real estate development, investment, and management firm, with a national footprint currently developing in New York, Florida, Connecticut, Ohio and California. Founded in 1986, the firm emphasizes its quality real estate products and sterling industry reputation. Kirchhoff Companies also emphasizes its design, development and investment prowess and has pride in providing the highest level of quality projects throughout. Joe has been honored by numerous organizations for his active role in the community.

Jacob Reckess: Jacob Reckess serves as the President of PAZ Management, Inc. (PAZ), a leading family-owned business that has operated in the healthcare and real estate development industries for over 40 years. Jacob assumed the role of president of PAZ in 2021, and has emphasized a desire to continue the PAZ focus on integrity-based projects that help build community. Currently, PAZ is developing the Arlington of Poughkeepsie: the conversion of the former Arthur S May School on Raymond Avenue into a green energy, sustainable mixed-use project in the heart of the Arlington Town Center.

Lynne M. Ward: Lynne M. Ward, Executive Vice President of National Resources since its formation, has been active in development of multiple industrial, residential and mixed-use projects in the New York Metro Area under two branded portfolios – i.Park and UNO. National Resources has developed several i.Park mixed-use campuses in former industrial infill locations, resulting in the creation of 40,000+ new jobs in spaces occupied by 30 to 50 new companies per location. Lynne is primarily involved in securing approvals and financing and in the origination of viable tenancy for the project.

5:00 PM: Networking Reception




Sponsorship: Complete and submit this form.


Thank you to our 2022 Accelerate Hudson Valley Sponsors!


Corporate Sponsor

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Leader Sponsor

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Advocate Sponsor

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A premier business-led organization, Think Dutchess Alliance for Business brings together 10 agency partners creating a one-stop shop for your site selection, financing, incentives, permitting and advocacy, strategic planning and counseling, marketing and networking needs.