May 14 – The Community Loan Fund of the Capital Region, along with our funding partners, are proud to announce the first round of grant recipients today. These small businesses applied for and were approved for the COVID-19 Small Business Continuity Grant Program. Grant awards will help stabilize these businesses and secure their future in the Capital Region.

The program has been funded through generous donations from Neil and Jane Golub, the Capital Region Chamber, Berkshire Bank, Citizens Bank, KeyBank, as well as other municipalities and community organizations. The grant program is administered by the Community Loan Fund of the Capital Region.

“We are so pleased to be able to help minority and women-owned businesses by providing direct relief during this difficult time,” said Linda MacFarlane, Executive Director of the Community Loan Fund of the Capital Region. “This list demonstrates the strength of this business community and our commitment to seeing them succeed, even during this challenging time.”

Grants have been awarded to the following businesses:

  • Malgorzata Staunches, Kids Closet Consignment Boutique LLC, Warren County, $7,500
  • Darlene Myers, MYERS DANCE STUDIO, INC., Schenectady County, $10,000
  • Natalia O’Connor / Florin Vlad, DANCE FIRE STUDIO & FITNESS, Schenectady County, $10,000
  • David Anderson, Anderson Construction Corporation, Albany County, $20,000
  • Lisa Groff, Active and Well Family Chiropractic, Fulton County, $10,000
  • Jennifer Dugan, The Makeup Curio, LLC, Schenectady County, $3,900
  • Patrick Kiley, Publication Studio Hudson, Rensselaer County, $5,000
  • Nancy Cobb, Spinning Yarn Tales LLC, Albany County, $10,000
  • April Weygand, April Fresh Cleaning, Inc., Saratoga County, $10,000
  • Bruce Kersting, Adirondack Chamois Inc., Fulton County, $10,000
  • Kathleen Leiback, Cafe Deli-icious, Rensselaer County, $5,000
  • Mark Yonally, B. Lodge & Co., Albany County, $20,000
  • Rockie Mann, JAFJR Construction Services, Albany County, $18,000
  • Milton Lee Evans, ReWire Group, Saratoga County, $10,600
  • Karen Maxwell, Kema’s Kreations, Albany County, $20,000

The COVID-19 Small Business Continuity Program received an overwhelming response; the Community Loan Fund received 272 applications in just the first week. A full 48% of these applications were from minority and women-owned businesses, including restaurants, daycares, hair salons, small boutiques, spa and fitness centers, dry cleaners, construction companies, florists and dance studios, and 20% of those were from immigrant owned businesses.

The Community Loan Fund also received applications from breweries, tourism-related businesses, cleaning services, sign companies, and more. Collectively, these businesses represent 1,398 employees, all struggling with issues related to COVID-19.

The majority (205) operate from brick-and-mortar locations, including historic buildings, Class-C office space, and industrial retrofits that have taken time, energy, and funding to put back into productive use.

“We will continue to solicit donations and contributions to make future awards,” says MacFarlane. “We can see that our community is in distress, and we want to grow this program to keep up with the unprecedented demand we are witnessing for small business assistance.”