• HVYP Leadership Bios

  • Michelle Barone-Lepore Michelle Barone-Lepore

    I am the Senior Vice President of Marketing at Rhinebeck Bank in Poughkeepsie. I graduated Cum Laude from Marist College with a B.S. in Marketing. You may have heard me on the radio as the Saturday afternoon live host on 96.1 Kiss FM. I am also a professional singer and perform at some of the Valley’s most well-attended events.

    Not only do I sit on the Hudson Valley Young Professionals Advisory Council, but I am also co-chair of the Fundraising committee. This year I am also co-chairing the “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes” event hosted by Family Services, which last year I helped organize and host. Additionally, I dedicate time to Poughkeepsie’s First Friday initiative – helping to stimulate economic growth in the City of Poughkeepsie. I am passionate about my career in marketing and I have a deeply vested interest in our local community. I love to leverage my skills and experience to help businesses and organizations thrive. 

  • Geoff Brault Geoff Brault

    I'm originally from Philadelphia, went to high school in Connecticut, and fell in love with the Hudson Valley after graduating from Marist College. At work, I'm the Digital and Brand Strategist at MidHudson Regional Hospital handling a multitude of marketing and communications responsibilities. At night and on the weekends, I'm the radio play-by-play voice of Marist football and basketball, and host of The Classroom, a weekly academic-based sports talk show on Fox 1220 WGNY.

    Outside of the office and arena, I enjoy golf, travel, and eating at all of the amazing restaurants in Dutchess County. After being involved with the Hudson Valley Young Professionals for more than five years in a variety of roles, I was elected co-chair in 2017. 

  • Shelia Bogan Shelia Bogan

    Home is where the heart is, so I returned to Wappingers Falls after graduating from St. Michael's College in Vermont ('15), where I earned my BA in Media Studies, Journalism, and Digital Arts. I’m proud to be a Community Development Manager at the American Cancer Society, where I currently oversee the Hudson Valley Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk.

    I spend a lot of time networking in the community and enjoy volunteering as well. I'm currently the co-chair of the Membership and Communications committee of HVYP, a supporter of the Dutchess County Out of the Darkness walk (American Foundation for Suicide Prevention), and a proud member of the Leadership Dutchess class of 2019. In my spare time, I enjoy traveling, spending time with my family, seeing live music, and giving back to the community. 

  • Melissa Clark Melissa Clark

    I first fell in love with the Hudson Valley while working toward my B.A. in International Relations at SUNY New Paltz, which recently named me a 40 Under 40 alum. After college, I spent two years in national service as an AmeriCorps VISTA in Poughkeepsie and went on to earn my M.A.from SUNY Empire State College in Social & Public Policy.

    I’ve held various positions at United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region, most recently Director of Community Impact. In additton to serving as HVYP’s Community Outreach Coordinator, I serve on the Orange County Youth Bureau Advisory Board, Dutchess County Economic Development Advisory Council, as Co-Chair of the Dutchess County Bringing Agencies Together Coalition and as Board Chair for the Emergency Food and Shelter Program for Dutchess and Orange. In my spare time, I’m hanging out with my husband, puppy and tortoise at home in Poughkeepsie. 

  • Devan Cleary Devan Cleary

    I work for The Hodgkins Agency, a financial services practice based out of the City of Poughkeepsie. I am heavily involved in the community, whether at networking events building business, or volunteering for different organizations, such as the Dutchess Regional Chamber of Commerce, to help build a strong community. I enjoy cooking on the grill during spring and summer, as well as spending time with family and friends. I enjoy watching football and baseball, especially if it’s the Mets or the football Giants. 

  • Heather Fitzsimmons Heather Fitzsimmons

    I'm originally from the Hudson Valley and grew up in Poughkeepsie. After graduating from The College of Saint Rose in Albany, I moved back to the Hudson Valley. Working in the Career Center at Mount Saint Mary College, I helped students and alumni prepare for their next step - the job hunt - and seeking opportunities to gain experience their their field of study.

    I joined HVYP in August 2014 and became an Advisory Council in September 2015. Being a member of HVYP has helped me grow both personally and professionally and the connections I have made are priceless. After being away from the Hudson Valley for school, HVYP helped me to get more connected to my local community (and there are a lot of fun events!). In my free time, I love being outdoors, gardening, or trying to decide which DIY project or recipe to try next (I’m a total foodie). 

  • Freddy Garcia Freddy Garcia

    As a Bronx native, I moved up from New York City to the Hudson Valley 7 years ago after accepting a position at Marist College. Currently, I serve as the Special Assistant to the President for Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Engagement responsible for providing leadership, innovation, and vision to promote diversity and inclusion among all constituents of the College. I also serve as a liaison to the community developing key relationships that advance the mission of Marist College.

    On top of serving on the HVYPl Advisory Council, I am a proud board member of the Catharine Street Community Center, Family Services, Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce and Rhinebeck Bank. As you can see, I am deeply passionate not only about my professional career but also making an positive impact in my community. I enjoy getting out on the greens for a round of golf, watching and occasionally playing basketball, and spending time with family and friends. 

  • Angela Lombardi Angela Lombardi

    I am currently employed at a local family-run business started in 1979 by my father John Lombardi... CIA Security in Fishkill, holding a marketing degree from Marist College School of Business. I’ve enjoyed being a part of the Advisory Council since 2016, as well as the Education & Professional Development, and Special Events committees with the Hudson Valley Young Professionals. I’m a New York City Marathon runner, and enjoy singing on the side. 

  • Don Minichino Don Minichino

    A DCC and MSMC grad, I’ve been a journalist, photographer/videographer, ad agency exec, and now an economic developer. If you’re not moving, you’re just taking up space! As Director of Business Attraction for Think Dutchess, I’m often busy pitching site selectors and corporate executives across the U.S. on the competitive advantages of doing business here. I’ve been an Advisory Council member since 2015 and co-chair its Communications Committee. In 2017, I was honored as a Forty Under 40 Mover and Shaker.

    I’m an annual participant in the Fishkill Polar Plunge, serve on Poughkeepsie’s First Friday Committee, and run an annual fundraising campaign to benefit Sparrow’s Nest. When I need a break, you can find me on the 7 Line en-route to Citi Field, or in the stands at The Dutch. You might also find me on Amtrak traveling cross-country, finessing my photo skills at historic sites and waterfronts, running Spartan Races, biking rail trails, or kayaking the Hudson. Who knows what adventures lie ahead! 

  • Eddie Monroy Eddie Monroy

    I can proudly call myself a true Hudson Valley Product. I grew up in Orange County, started my college career at DCC, and became a Hall of Famer within the Business School at SUNY New Paltz as I completed both my undergraduate and post-graduate studies.

    I have a strong passion for both business and helping others reach their dreams! I’m currently Director of Consulting for Strategy Leaders, where I work with a diverse group of small-medium-business owners to grow revenue, profits, and sustainability. I’m on the board of the Westchester Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, advisor with Educate 2 Envision, and co-chair of HVYP’s Education Committee, and sit on its Advisory Council.

    In my downtime, I’m active on the soccer field scoring goals, traveling to new locations, enjoying brew tours (as well as brewing!), & spending time with friends and family. 

  • Matt Mullaney Matt Mullaney

    A lifelong resident of the Hudson Valley, I work for a multi-generational regional automobile dealer... Hudson Cadillac Buick GMC in Poughkeepsie, where I am the General Manager. In addition to being on the Advisory Council for the Hudson Valley Young Professionals, I am also a board member for The Chamber Foundation. 

  • Justin Semke Justin Semke

    After graduating from Northeastern University in Boston, I was very excited to move back home to Dutchess County. Now that I have been back for a number of years working as a Financial Advisor with Ameriprise Financial, I know I made the right choice. I truly enjoy working with individuals to help them navigate life and achieve their goals. When I am not working, I love to spend time with my fianceĢe andour dog hiking, driving around the area, visiting family, or sometimes just hanging out at home. I also enjoy giving back to the community as a member of the LaGrange Sunrise Rotary. 

  • Born and raised in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., I completed my undergraduate degree at Marist College in 2007 and then continued my studies at Mercy College earning my Masters in HR Management in 2009. A proud 2018 recipient of the DCRCOC 40 Under 40 Award, I am the Senior Learning & Development Business Partner for Tompkins Mahopac Bank handling the training and development for our team members.

    My volunteer activities vary from being a Career Coach at Dress for Success to paddling in the annual dragon boat race, to running for a cause or co-leading the 2017 Leadership Dutchess class. I  love living in the Hudson Valley and enjoy being part of the vibrant community. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, getting out on the rail trail and getting miles in, reading, grabbing some great food and a good glass of bourbon.


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