With the untimely passing of Jason “Jay” Shenkman who had built a following as a bartender at the Chophouse Grille in Mahopac, I got to thinking about some of the amazing people who work for our Putnam County businesses. Customers were attracted to the fun atmosphere he fostered at the Chophouse. We tend to focus on the business owners and the entrepreneurs. Jason left behind such a legacy in the Putnam County business community, it seemed worthwhile to dedicate this article to hima and other star employees in Putnam County.
You know a star employee the minute you meet one. He or she possesses the ability to change someone’s mood and make a transactional experience to a personal one. A few come to mind in Putnam County. For example, Rob Breidster of the service department at Park Ford is by far the most amazing customer service person I have ever dealt with. People buy cars from Park Ford just so their vehicles will be serviced by Rob. Or take Pam Zacotinsky, ad executive for Quarterly magazine. She has as much passion and client relationships as any dedicated owner would. There are also many food establishments where the entire staff go above and beyond to make people feel at home, such as Florrie Kays in Carmel, or Buccis and Ramiro’s in Mahopac.
Putnam County has so many examples of star employees that it makes the flip side all the more frustrating. Among local business owners’ largest complaints is the difficulty of hiring and then keeping good employees and staff. I make a personal promise for the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce to give this issue more attention. We have partnerships with such groups as the Putnam Workforce Partnership, the Westchester-Putnam Workforce Board Career Center and the Department of Labor and need to further collaborate to develop our workforce.
-Jennifer Maher, Chairwoman, the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce, “A business advocacy group”