AIDA appoints director search committee, hires mirco-enterprise grant administrator


The search for a permanent director of the Amsterdam Industrial Development Agency moved forward yesterday with the appointment of a search committee by Board Chairman Pat Baia. On the committee will be Joe Emanuele, who is currently serving as the interim director, board members Michael Rossi, Michael McCabe, and Baia, Mayor Michael Villa, Alderman Chad Majewski, board attorney Chuck Schwartz, and former Montgomery County personnel director Richard Baia.

The search committee will work to establish the job description and benefits, as well as conduct interviews and make a recommendation for the position. The full AIDA board will make the final decision on the hire. Emanuele said that the committee will look to promote the job opening state-wide through New York State economic development agencies.

Baia commended Emanuele on the job he has done so far as interim director since being appointed after the resignation of former director Jody Zakrevsky in September.

“I’m happy to say we hit the ground running with Joe Emanuele. The agency is doing all that we are required to do under Joe’s watchful eye. He’s putting a herculean effort into this,” said Baia.

Also at Thursday’s meeting, the board approved a measure to bring on Nick Zabawsky to help administer a New York State micro-enterprise grant that was awarded to the city last year. Zabawksy currently serves as the director of the Amsterdam Urban Renewal Agency, but also provides grant services through his company Orion Management. Zawbawsky’s fee has yet to be determined, but Emanuele said the cost will come out of the administration fees awarded to the city along with the grant.

The Montgomery County Business Development Center applied for the grant on behalf of the city, but asked AIDA to take over the administration of the grant after the resignation of one of the center’s staff members.

While AIDA has done some initial work in scoring the applications of 13 area businesses for the grant, the process was put on hold with the resignation of Zakrevsky.

Given the grant period ends in December 2018, Emanuele said, “We need to get moving on it. That’s why we wanted Nick. Nick has done this before, so he’s experienced with this, he knows the contact people in Albany.”

Tim Becker

Tim Becker is the owner of Anthem Websites Inc. which publishes The Compass. He serves as both editor and a writer.