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Small Business Development Center Welcomes New Staff

PLATTSBURGH, NY (December 11, 2007) - Andrew Allison and Alicia Sirk have been added to the staff of the North Country Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at SUNY Plattsburgh. Allison and Sirk will join two other business advisors responsible for assisting businesses throughout five northern New York counties.

In making the announcement, Dee Clark, SBDC director said, "We are delighted to have such competent and personable advisors added to our staff. Their expertise will add much to our organization."

Allison began working at Disneyland while in high school and was promoted and transferred to Florida Walt Disney World, working in Food Administration. After he left Disney, he started his own business, a retail and wholesale meat market. In addition to Disney, his diverse food industry experience includes work with a five-star hotel, prestigious retail supermarket companies, a tennis and golf resort, a lunch school program, and fast-food establishments, as well as serving as a caterer for a private food establishment. Allison has experience in counseling, leadership in small and large group settings and in public speaking. He has used his talents in many different capacities since coming to the North Country in 2000. Allison received his masters of divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in 2000 and his bachelor's degree from the University of South Florida in 1996.

Sirk was born and raised in the City of Plattsburgh, where her father was stationed at the Air Force base. After spending time away for college and world travel, she returned to the North Country. Sirk worked as an executive director for a not-for-profit organization, a securities paralegal for a mutual funds company, an events coordinator, and a capital campaign consultant/decentralization coordinator for both an arts organization and a $4 million theatre restoration project. Sirk has extensive experience in marketing, media, management, fundraising, grant writing, website layout and development, and public relations. The wife of an Army combat medic, she is an advocate for veterans. When not working, she enjoys singing, acting, and camping. Sirk received her masters in administration and leadership from SUNY Plattsburgh in 2003 and her BA from St. Lawrence University in 2002.

The North Country Small Business Development Center (SBDC), part of the School of Business and Economics at the State University of New York College at Plattsburgh is located at 194 US Oval (old base) in Plattsburgh. The North Country SBDC works one-on-one in a confidential setting with emerging, existing and expanding entrepreneurs, providing these services at no cost to clients in Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Hamilton, Warren and Northern Washington counties for over 20 years.

The North Country SBDC is part of a statewide program funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration and the State University of New York. Businesses seeking advice on management assistance and can contact Andy Allison or Alicia Sirk at 518-564-2523. For more information about the center, visit the North Country SBDC online at www.plattsburgh.edu/offices/support/sbdc.

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