About IAED

Meet IAED

Who is Ithaca Area
Economic Development?

Ithaca Area Economic Development (IAED; formerly Tompkins County Area Development) is a private non-profit economic development organization serving Ithaca and Tompkins County. We are New York State’s first and only Accredited Economic Development Organization, one of only 70 across North America.

Since 1964, we’ve maintained a singleness of purpose: create a supportive business environment that attracts, grows, and retains companies that provide high-quality employment. IAED provides consistent, customized economic development leadership needed to help you grow and prosper. It’s who we are and what we do.

Through forward-thinking, strategic partnerships with businesses, government, academic institutions, and area non-profits, we’re your one-stop shop for success. Check out this website and some of the amazing things we’re doing. Then get in touch and let’s get creative together!

Driven by Our Mission. Guided by Our Vision.

Building a thriving and sustainable economy in Ithaca and Tompkins County.

Our Mission

Ithaca Area Economic Development is dedicated to building a thriving and sustainable economy that improves the quality of life in Tompkins County by fostering the growth of business and employment.

Our Vision

A flourishing economy with exciting, innovative firms that inspire and attract a talented workforce.

What we do

Our Services

Business Services

IAED provides direct incentives and customized resources that fit the needs of businesses at every stage of growth and development.

Economic Strategy

The 2015-2020 Tompkins County Economic Development Strategy, developed and delivered by IAED, accompanies and advances the Tompkins County Comprehensive Plan.

Leadership

IAED president, Heather McDaniel CEcD, and staff serve on boards and committees at all levels of governance, sharing their expertise and shaping programs and policy.

Who We Are

Our Dedicated Team

IAED is dedicated to helping businesses start, grow, and stay in Ithaca and Tompkins County. Our team employs its vast knowledge and experience to support a healthy and prosperous local economy and community.

Heather McDaniel

Heather McDaniel

President

Chuck Schwerin

Chuck Schwerin

Managing Director of Business Services

Kurt Anderson

Kurt Anderson

Director of Development and Strategy

 Ina Arthur

Ina Arthur

Manager of Administrative Services

Measuring up

Our Accomplishments

IAED celebrates previous years’ accomplishments via an annual report.

2021

2020 was a year of incredible challenges for everyone and IAED worked tirelessly to support local businesses impacted by COVID-19 and plan for recovery while also completing our planned work for the year. 

 

  • 13 Projects
  • $239.9M in New Investment
  • 775 Retained Jobs
  • 147 Projected New Jobs

2020

In 2019, our local economy was strong and IAED celebrated many successes.

  • 23 Projects
  • $87M in New Investment
  • 159 Retained Jobs
  • 54 Projected New Jobs

2019

In 2018, unemployment hit record lows, jobs grew by 3%, and IAED welcomed a new president.

  • 11 Projects
  • $98.7M in New Investment
  • 279 Jobs Retained
  • 54 Projected New Jobs

 

Board of Directors

Executive Committee

Dr. Greg Galvin, Chair

Chairman & CEO, Rheonix Dr. Galvin is Chairman and CEO of Rheonix, Inc., a microfluidic-based, fully automated, molecular diagnostic systems company. He is also interim CEO of Mezmeriz, Inc., an early stage MEMS device company, and Executive Chairman of Incodema3D, a metals additive manufacturing provider. Until 2013 Dr. Galvin was the President and CEO of Kionix, Inc., a MEMS company he co-founded in 1993. He currently serves on the boards of Rheonix, Incodema3D, and Mezmeriz. Dr. Galvin was a member of the Cornell University Board of Trustees from 2011 until 2015. He currently serves on the Advisory Council of Cornell’s College of Engineering, the Advisory Council of Entrepreneurship at Cornell, and the Advisory Council of the Cornell Department of Materials Science. In 2010 he was a regional Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award winner. Dr. Galvin was honored by Cornell as the 2014 Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year. He has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology, a M.S. ’82 and a Ph.D. ’84 in Materials Science and an M.B.A. ‘93 from Cornell University.

Cathy Hart, Vice Chair
General Manager, Ithaca Marriott Downtown/Monks on the Commons

Cathy is the General Manager (GM) for the Ithaca Marriott Downtown/Monks on the Commons. She moved to Ithaca in December 2015 and opened the hotel and restaurant a year later. Cathy has been in the hospitality industry for 35 years with the last 31 years with Marriott. Cathy spent many years in the sales discipline until taking on her first GM role in 1998. The Ithaca Marriott is Cathy’s 5th GM role. With her combined sales and GM background, Cathy realizes how important business development and economic growth are to the success of her business. Cathy also serves as a board member for the Downtown Ithaca Alliance. The Ithaca Marriott employs 105 associates and has welcomed over 100,000 guests to the hotel and over 200,000 patrons, many local, to Monks since opening two years ago.
Jeff Gorsky, Treasurer

Partner, Sciarabba Walker

Jeff joined Sciarabba Walker in 1992 and has been a partner since 2001. He is head of the firm’s Consulting department and serves as leader of the firm’s High-Technology and Emerging Businesses specialty practice area. His emphasis is on small business consulting, new business startups, local entrepreneurs, and taxation.  Over the years, he has assisted clients in strategic planning, mergers and acquisitions, business valuations, financing, and new business startups.

Jeff currently serves as the Treasurer of Ithaca Lacrosse Club, a board member of Tompkins County Industrial Development Agency and Tompkins County Development Corporation.

Mary George Opperman, Secretary

Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Cornell University

Mary is committed to advancing an equitable workplace culture and advances this goal as an advocate for approximately eighteen thousand staff and faculty on campuses in Ithaca, Geneva (NY), New York City and Qatar, as well as dozens of research facilities across the country and beyond, and as an ambassador with the local and regional communities. Her portfolio at Cornell includes oversight of the Division of Human Resources, the Office of Inclusion and Belonging, Institutional Equity and Title IX Compliance, and the Center for Regional Economic Advancement. Mary is passionate about creating a culture of belonging at Cornell that values and supports employees as whole persons, and in turn, is mindful of the connection between the workplace, the individual, and the community in which we live.

Mary is an active supporter of her community and has served on numerous boards of local and national organizations. She is currently serving on the boards of the Ithaca Area Economic Development, the Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council, the Legacy Foundation of Tompkins County, the Sciencenter, the Boyce Thompson Institute, the National Academy of Human Resources Foundation and Ithaca College. She is also a member of the Governing Body for the New York HR Leadership Summit and the ILR Advisory Council.

Prior to joining Cornell in 1996, Mary spent 13 years in the human resource function at Harvard University. She is a fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources and is certified by the Society for Human Resource Management as a senior professional in human resources. She has a Bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Oneonta in political science and a Master of Science degree in organizational behavior from Cornell University.

Greg Hartz, Tompkins Financial
President, Tompkins Trust Company

Mr. Hartz has been the President and Chief Executive Officer of Tompkins Trust Company, and Executive Vice President of Tompkins Financial Corporation since January 01, 2007.  Prior to his current role, he was a Senior Vice President of Tompkins Trust Company, with responsibility for Tompkins Investment Services since 2002. Mr. Hartz has been a Director of Tompkins Trust Company since January 1, 2007.  Mr. Hartz is a native of Ithaca having graduated from Ithaca High School and Cornell University.  In addition to serving on the board of TCAD he serves on the boards of Cayuga Medical Center and Cayuga Health System, and The Legacy Foundation.
Lisa Holmes, Interim County Administrator

Interim County Administrator, Tompkins County

Lisa Holmes has served as Interim County Administrator for Tompkins County since June, 2021.  In this role she serves as the County’s chief executive officer, overseeing the activities of county departments and preparing and administering the County’s annual operating budget.  Prior to her current role, Lisa served as Deputy County Administrator, Interim Human Resources Commissioner and Director of the Tompkins County Office for the Aging. In these various capacities Lisa has worked conscientiously to deliver quality services to County residents, center equity in policies, procedures and budgets, maintain fiscal responsibility and attend to the development and morale of staff.  Lisa holds a B.S. from Cornell University and an MPA from Northeastern University.

Laura Lewis, City of Ithaca
Chris Malcolm, Wegmans

Manager, Wegmans

..

Directors

Johanna Anderson, INHS

Executive Director, INHS

Johanna is the Executive Director at INHS, a $43 million nonprofit organization that provides a comprehensive array of affordable housing programs and serves a seven county region in central New York. Johanna has dedicated her career to helping low-income people find quality, safe housing that fits their needs. She has over 15 years of experience in expanding access to affordable housing, building livable communities, and leading economic development efforts to reach diverse populations throughout the nation. Johanna has deep expertise in affordable housing finance and community real estate development, as well as a strong track record of developing successful collaborations among government, private sector, nonprofit and community partners. Prior to INHS, Johanna worked at community development financial institutions in NYS and Maine serving low-income and tribal communities. She created pilot programs in Washington DC and in rural Minnesota to help people obtain access to affordable housing. Johanna has a BA from Colorado State University, a MBA in Nonprofit Management from Husson University. She holds nationally-recognized certifications in homeownership programs and housing development finance, and serves the Tompkins Trust Company Board of Directors.
 

Rosemary Avila, Tompkins County Workforce Development Board

Interim Director, Tompkins County Workforce Development Board

 

Julie Baker, Ursa Space Systems, Inc.

Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, Ursa Space Systems, Inc.

Julie co-founded Ursa Space Systems in 2014 to connect information-rich satellite data with critical decision makers around the globe. As Ursa’s COO, Julie leads the administrative team supporting Ursa’s successful operations and serves on Ursa’s board of directors. She is a passionate leader in workplace diversity, playing a key role in creating Ursa’s diverse and 50% female workforce. Julie has 30 years of experience in the software industry, including 15 years in engineering and technical management. She holds a Master of Science in computer science from Stanford University and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Texas at Austin.
 

Larry Baum, Past Chair

Founder, The Computing Center

Larry founded the original organization that became The Computing Center in 1978. Today, Larry spends much of his time looking at the overall strategic direction of the company. He is very interested in how technology can be better integrated and leveraged into companies and organizations to make them more efficient and ultimately better managed.

Shawna Black, Tompkins County Legislature
Katie Borgella, AICP, Tompkins County

 
Commissioner of Planning and Sustainability, Tompkins County

Katie serves as Commissioner of Planning and Sustainability for Tompkins County. There, she oversees an eleven-member department responsible for implementing the Tompkins County Comprehensive Plan, which is a long-term vision for the future of the community. Topics of focus in recent years have been in housing, energy, land conservation, tourism, and development. Prior to her current role, Katie served as a civil engineer for the Federal government.
Illa Burbank, Incodema, Inc.

President, Incodema, Inc.

 
Illa is the president of Incodema Inc., a rapid prototype manufacturing firm in Ithaca. She joined the firm when it was a start-up in 2001. Prior to becoming president, Illa served as CFO. She helped grow the company, acquire Newcut as a sister company and spin-off Incodema3D as its own entity. Illa has served as adjunct professor at Ithaca College and taught Financial Statement Analysis to bankers. Prior to Incodema, Illa was a commercial credit analyst and commercial lender at Tompkins Trust Company. Illa has a B.S. in Finance and an M.B.A. ’13 from Ithaca College. She is active in the community including having served as scout leader for 8 years, founder of IthacaSTEM Advocates and creator of a business plan competition for Ithaca high school pre-engineering students.
 

John Collett, Cayuga Health Systems

Vice President / Chief Financial Officer, Cayuga Health Systems

John has worked at Cayuga Health Systems for the past 22 years, with the last eight as Vice President/Chief Financial Officer. John has served on several Community Boards over the years including Hospicare & Palliative Care Services and Cayuga Addiction Recovery Services. John currently serves on the Board of Directors and Finance Committee of the Racker Center.
 
 

Sophia Darling, Boyce Thompson Institute

Vice President / Chief Operations Officer, Boyce Thompson Institute

Sophia Darling is the Vice President and Chief Operations Officer for the Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI), an independent, nonprofit research institution. In addition to her role at BTI, Sophia facilitates Women In Leadership and Diversity and Inclusion courses for eCornell. She serves as Secretary for the Association of Independent Research Institutes. 

Sophia is a native of Groton, NY, and graduate of the Groton Central School District (GCSD). She currently serves as the President of the GCSD Board of Education, on which she has been a member for 11 years. Sophia earned a B.A. in accounting from Niagara University and an M.B.A from Syracuse University.

Jerry Goodenough, Heorot Power
Vice President of Development, Heorot Power

Jerry Goodenough has been VP of Development for Heorot Power for the last 1.5 years.  For five years prior to that he was the Chief Operating Officer for Upstate New York Power Producers.  He has also held various roles with the AES company including Plant Manager of the Cayuga Thermal Facility.  Jerry started his career working for NYSEG as an engineer and worked for them for over 12 years.  He has a B.S. in Physics and an MSEE.  Jerry is President of the Dryden Sports Boosters and served on the United Way Board for 9 years, acting as Treasurer for the last two years.
Tom Knipe, City of Ithaca
 
Deputy Director for Economic Development, City of Ithaca.

Tom serves in the City’s Department of Planning, Building, Zoning and Economic Development as Deputy Director for Economic Development. Previously, he worked in the Tompkins County Department of Planning and Sustainability as the first Director of the Tompkins County Tourism Program. The Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce honored him recently with the Howard Cogan Tourism Award for his work to strengthen Tompkins County’s tourism economy and his “exceptional creativity and vision” in leading the program. Tom holds a Masters Degree from the Cornell Department of City and Regional Planning where he was the 2011 recipient of the Thomas W. Mackesey Award. He started his career as a high school English teacher in Japan and has also worked as director of an educational not for profit organization and event director in Portland, Oregon. He lectures regularly at Cornell University and Ithaca College and currently serves on the boards of the New York Upstate American Planning Association, New York Bicycling Coalition, and Bike Walk Tompkins.
Wendy Kobler, Ithaca College
Anne Koreman, Tompkins County Legislature
Ed Lavigne

Supervisor, Town of Lansing ..

 

Laurie Linn, Communique

President, Communique Marketing & Design

Communique is a woman-owned enterprise that specializes in professional marketing and advertising, serving over 50 small to medium sized nonprofit and for-profit businesses on the East Coast. Linn is an active volunteer in Tompkins County and has accepted several leadership positions with many organizations for the continued health and vitality of Ithaca’s quality of life and economic sustainability.

Joel Malina, Cornell University
Vice President for University Relations, Cornell University

Joel M. Malina serves as Vice President for University Relations, coordinating Cornell’s internal and external communications functions as well as the university’s relationships with federal, state, and local policy makers and stakeholders. In coordinating University Communications, Malina supervises a large staff working in three critical areas: Communications, Media Relations and News, and Marketing. He also works closely with the deans and the communications directors of Cornell’s colleges and schools. Malina’s primary responsibilities in this arena include leading the development and implementation of a university-wide communications strategy and serving as Cornell’s principal spokesperson. As head of Federal, State and Community Relations, Malina directs the university’s public policy efforts and coordinates its involvement with government-focused higher education associations. With offices in Washington, DC, in Albany, and on the Ithaca campus, Malina and the Government and Community Relations staff serve as liaisons between Cornell and elected officials, agencies, and other stakeholders at the federal, state, and local levels. Malina also works closely with the director of government and community affairs at Weill Cornell Medical College and the director of external relations at Cornell Tech. Malina came to Cornell from Washington, DC, where he served as CEO and general manager of Wexler | Walker, one of the nation’s top public policy consulting firms. Over the course of 21 years at the firm, Malina established himself as one of Washington’s premier strategists and coalition practitioners, managing numerous successful lobbying and communications campaigns on behalf of Fortune 100 companies, non-profits, and trade associations.
Dr. Jeff Matteson, TST BOCES

District Superintendent, TST BOCES

Dr. Matteson has been an educator for over thirty years as a teacher, assistant principal, principal and superintendent in Vermont and New York State. He is currently in his ninth year as the District Superintendent of the Tompkins-Seneca-Tioga Supervisory District. This dual role includes Chief Executive Officer responsibilities at the nine district Tompkins-Seneca-Tioga Board of Cooperative Services (BOCES) and he reports directly to the New York State Commissioner of Education as her representative to the field. On the state level, Dr. Matteson served as the Chair of the District Superintendents of the BOCES of NY from 2018-2020. In addition, he was appointed by the Commissioner of Education to the TeachNY Roundtable and represented his colleagues on the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Think Tank, the National Board Certification Work Group and the Computer Science Standards review committee. In the Tompkins County region, Dr. Matteson currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce where he serves as Board Chair. He is in his third term on the Tompkins County Workforce Development Board, where he serves on the Executive Committee.

Deb Mohlenhoff, Tompkins Cortland Community College

Director of Community Outreach and Engagement, Tompkins Cortland Community College

Deb Mohlenhoff is currently the Associate Vice President for College Relations at Tompkins Cortland Community College as well as the Program Director for Leadership Tompkins and Leadership Cortland. She oversees the College’s Marketing and Workforce Development departments and serves as the College’s representative for legislative advocacy. She is recently left her seat on the City of Ithaca Common Council after serving for over 12 years. She has an undergraduate degree in Communications from Ithaca College and a Master’s in Public Administration from Binghamton University. She is a member of many local boards and has served nationally with the American Cancer Society Leadership Training Team and as a member of the advisory board for the National Society of Leadership and Success. She is currently chairing the Special Olympics Games Operating Committee for the State Games to be held in Ithaca. She regularly provides strategic planning as a consultant for non-profits with a specialty focus on Gallup Strengths, Organizational Leadership, Generations in the Workplace, and Volunteer Management.

Brian Noteboom, North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters

Local 277 Representative, North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters Brian has been a Union Carpenter for 32 years and is currently a Union Representative for the New England Regional Council of Carpenters. He attended the United Brotherhood of Carpenters (UBC) Apprentice program to start his Trades career in 1987. He has held various leadership rolls in the local union before becoming a Representative in 2003. Brian attended Tompkins Cortland Community College as well as many training classes at the UBC International Training Center to strengthen his skill set as a union representative. Brian lives in Newfield, and with his personal experience and skills, built his home in 2002. He also uses these skills to help with volunteer projects involving his local church and community (Friends of Stewart Park playground build 2018). He is currently the Financial Secretary of Local 277 and had previously served as the local’s Treasurer.  Brian has a drive to grow the union trade’s membership in Tompkins County. A great career can be had with the local apprenticeship programs offered and the individual’s willingness to work hard.  

 

Tom Robinson, BorgWarner

Plant Manager, BorgWarner Morse TEC

Tom Schryver, Cornell University
Executive Director for the Center for Regional Economic Advancement, Cornell University

Tom is the Executive Director of Cornell’s Center for Regional Economic Advancement (CREA) and is a Visiting Lecturer at the Johnson Graduate School of Management. CREA’s programs include Rev: Ithaca Startup Works, the Southern Tier Startup Alliance, and support of Cornell’s regional economic advancement efforts. Tom leads the Upstate NY I-Corps Node, and is the lead instructor for Cornell Engineering’s Commercialization Fellows program. He serves on the teaching team for eLab, Cornell’s student business accelerator, and teaches entrepreneurship and business strategy at Cornell. He is an experienced entrepreneur having served as a startup founder and senior finance executive of high-growth companies. Previously, he was Director of Finance for the Triad Foundation, where his responsibilities included investing the Foundation’s $250M portfolio to top-quartile returns. His board affiliations include the Cornell Agriculture and Food Technology Park and Tompkins County Area Development, and as board vice-chair of the Business Incubator Association of New York State. Tom co-chairs the Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council’s Innovation Culture workgroup. Tom has an AB and MBA from Cornell, where he was a recipient of the MBA program’s Albert J. Fried Fellowship for Leadership and Academic Excellence. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).
Jennifer Tavares, CEcD, Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce

President & CEO, Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce

Jennifer Tavares, CEcD, has been President of the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce since 2014.  Prior to leading the Tompkins County Chamber & Convention & Visitors Bureau, she was the director of economic development for Chenango County and also director of the Potsdam Chamber of Commerce. Jennifer currently sits on the Workforce Development Board, Air Services Board, the Mozaic board, and the Chamber Alliance of New York State board; she also serves as President of the Tompkins Chamber Foundation.   

Jeremy Thomas, Cornell University
 
Senior Director of Cornell Real Estate

Jeremy is responsible for directing real estate development activities for Cornell, which includes strategic planning, oversight of acquisition, sale and leasing of all of Cornell’s real property assets. In his position he also oversees management, construction and financing of nonacademic real estate. He manages an annual $30 million portfolio of transactions, acquisitions, dispositions, real estate gifts, leases, licenses, easements and construction projects.
 
Shawn Wilczynski, Cargill Salt Mine
Plant Manager, Cargill Salt – Cayuga Mine

Shawn is originally from South Dakota and is a proud husband and father. He is also a proud Veteran, having served six  years in a Navy nuclear power program. He has nearly 22 years of experience in underground mining including 20 years with Cargill across three different mining operations. In his current role of Mine Manager, Shawn is responsible for safe, efficient and sustainable operation of the Cayuga Mine which has been a proud part of the community for over 100 years. Shawn has a passion for community involvement and has been a board member of the Sciencenter for five years. “It is an honor and privilege to be joining the TCAD board and working with others to achieve business creation, retention, and expansion.” – Shawn Wilczynski

Our Supporters

Thank you to our
Platinum Investors

Our investors believe in IAED. Their support enables us to provide the consistent, customized economic development leadership that helps our businesses, community, and economy prosper. We’re successful because of them.