Oneonta and Liberty Workshops Help Small Businesses Get Loans  

WALTON, NY, June 8, 2013 -- Whatever type of small business you have, chances are that at some point, you'll need a loan. In this economy, getting that loan is tougher than ever. For farm, food, and forest products businesses generally seen as riskier, it can seem impossible.


Getting that financing requires more than luck. It takes planning and knowing exactly what lenders look for in loan applicants.


To help improve local small businesses' chances of getting their next loan, the Watershed Agricultural Council is holding two "Financing Your Business" workshops where business owners can meet lenders, learn from them, and discuss with each other ways to beat the odds and get financing.


"We often see banks as faceless institutions, but really they're made up of people," says Josh VanBrakle, Wood Products Utilization and Marketing Specialist for the Council. "We want to help business owners see financing from the lender's side of the table. If they can do that, it can greatly increase their chances of getting a loan."


The workshops are geared toward farmers, food-based businesses, and forest products manufacturers, but any small business owner will find the information useful. The same workshop will be held twice: at the Sullivan County Soil and Water Conservation District building at 64 Ferndale Loomis Road in Liberty on Wednesday, July 10, and at Brooks House of BBQ in Oneonta on Thursday, July 11. Both workshops run from 4:30 - 8:00 p.m. Registration is $20 and includes dinner.


Those interested in attending can register online before Friday, June 28 by visiting or Those with questions can contact Josh VanBrakle at 607-865-7790, ext. 112.


Speakers at the workshop include Michelle Catan and Sam Kandel of the Small Business Development Center, Barbara Puglisi of the Catskill Watershed Corporation, and Robert Yurkewecz and Ryan Hrobuchak of Farm Credit East. Following the speaker presentations, attendees can ask questions of the presenters, share experiences seeking loans, and learn from other business owners during an open forum.


About the Watershed Agricultural Council

Celebrating its 20th year, the Watershed Agricultural Council continues to protect both the Catskills economy and drinking water quality for over nine million New Yorkers. Partnering with farmers, agri-businesses, woodland owners, forest industry professionals, non-profits and others, the Council furthers both regional business profitability and environmental stewardship.


The Council is funded in part by New York City Department of Environmental Protection, the U.S. Forest Service, U.S.D.A and other sources. The Financing Your Business workshop is funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. For more information, visit


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START: June 10, 2013
END: July 10, 2013 

SUMMARY: Finance workshop helps small business owners discover how to improve their odds when applying for credit. Representatives from Farm Credit East, Catskill Watershed Corp., and Small Business Development Center will present and answer questions. 

Josh VanBrakle
Wood Products Utilization & Marketing Specialist
(607) 865-7790, ext. 112
M-F, 7:30am-4:30 pm 



Tara Collins

Communications Director

(607) 865-7090, ext. 226

(607) 643-5148 cell

All other times 

The Watershed Agricultural Council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to support the economic viability of agriculture and forestry through the protection of water quality and the promotion of land conservation in the New York City Watershed region. The WAC is funded by The New York City Department of Environmental Protection, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Forest Service and other federal, foundation and private sources. The WAC is an Equal Opportunity Providers and Employers.