AMA chapter will hold 21st annual Business Development Conference on Nov. 9

AMA logoSUNY New Paltz’s award-winning chapter of the American Marketing Association (AMA) student organization is preparing for its 21st annual Business Development Conference (BDC). The conference, which will take place from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Nov. 9 in the Student Union, provides students of all majors an opportunity to learn from and network with guest speakers experienced in diverse areas of the food industry.

“The Business Development Conference offers a level of engagement and networking that is usually found at professional conferences, not student events,” said Dean of the School of Business Kristin Backhaus. “The entire BDC experience, from planning to implementation to participation, is an outstanding opportunity for our AMA student leaders. I am delighted with the program that the AMA team has put together.”

The speakers at this year’s BDC include the following entrepreneurs and innovators:

  • Janet Davis ’96 (Communication Media), CEO & Executive Chef at JADE Jamaican Grill
  • Larry Gottlieb, CEO of Hudson Valley Economic Development Corporation
  • Myra Kressner ’76 (Education), CEO of Kressner Strategy Group
  • Heidi Reale, Founder of Sparkshoppe
  • Patti Wilcox, Co-Founder of Awestruck Ciders

“We are excited to offer a newly revamped Business Development Conference this year!” said Russel Zwanka, faculty advisor to the New Paltz AMA. “In order to drive an even stronger connection between our students and the business community, we have tightened the timing of the event, turning the engagement into a panel discussion so we hit the ground running with questions from students to panelists who offer perspectives from a wide array of business success stories.”

For the student members of the New Paltz AMA, organizing the annual BDC presents challenges and demands that require problem-solving and organizational skills, valuable qualities employers look for.

“Attending the Business Development Conference as a freshman sparked my passion for marketing and the AMA,” said Katherine Maglione ’16 (Marketing, Visual Arts), current president of the AMA. “Now that I’m an AMA member, I’ve gotten to see how organizing the conference challenges us to apply skills learned through our curriculum, to create an event that allows other students to gain exceptional knowledge.”

Those interested in registering are encouraged to email the AMA at for more information. Attendance is free for all New Paltz students. Light refreshments will be served prior to the beginning of the conference.

About the SUNY New Paltz American Marketing Association chapter
The SUNY New Paltz AMA has grown to become the largest student club in the School of Business, with an average membership of 80 students per semester. AMA membership gives students the opportunity to connect with regional business leaders, participate in professional development conferences and complete AMA Certificate Programs, which supplement their education and make them more attractive to prospective employers after graduation. Over the years, the chapter has completed dozens of market projects for regional organizations including Families of New Paltz and the New Paltz and Ulster County Chambers of Commerce. In 2015 the New Paltz AMA was named the eighth-ranked national chapter at the AMA International Collegiate Conference, from a field of more than 350 U.S. college and university chapters.