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Need to create or refine your business plan? Are you seeking assistance with marketing, management skills, or bookkeeping? Could you benefit from some one-on-one mentoring or a formal business start-up course? Help is out there! Schedule a phone or video consultation now

Meet Our Consultants

Eileen Peet

Eileen graduated with her B.S. in Organizational Management from Keuka College. She began her career in business working as the Director of Sales and Marketing for an east coast based company, then transitioning to the world of outside sales for several Central New York based businesses. Eileen has worked with companies of all sizes, in many different capacities. Her industry knowledge and ability to identify what businesses need, how she can help, and what will work, stems from her education and extensive experience in the field.

In 2018 Eileen opened her own marketing business saying: "I truly enjoy helping people grow their business. It becomes a community-wide investment because when one business starts to grow, so does the community around it." 

In 2015 Eileen received the “Shining Star” award from the Southern Tier Binghamton Business Meet-Up and in 2016 she received the “Networker of the Year” award also, from the Southern Tier Binghamton Business Meet-Up. From 2015-2018, she served as an Ambassador for the Watkins Glen Chamber of Commerce, serving as the Ambassador Chair from 2016-2018. 

Eileen enjoys volunteering and ran the children's after-school program for Fusion (now City of Light) from 2015-2018, working with children in Chemung County. Married with two children, when she is not working, she is busy spending time with her family, driving teenagers everywhere while they participate in travel sports, and occasionally getting to hike with her dogs.   

Gladys Brangman

Gladys Brangman is at her best when serving others and has set out to make the small business world more profitable by offering support services and networking opportunities.  Her most recent venture is Business Leaders of Colors (BLOC). She believes that business owners of color(s) can not only survive but thrive as long as they are aware of and support one another. A gathering to celebrate Black History Month, transformed into a network that became a business. BLOC offers business and financial training, marketing, a web presence, and networking opportunities.

Originally from Albany, New York, Gladys came to the area to study at Cortland State. She has a BA in Communications and a master’s degree in conflict resolution and reconciliation from Abilene Christian University. Gladys has lived in the Ithaca area for the better part of 30 years. She makes her home in Lansing, teaches dance when she can and believes that there is no higher calling than that of a servant.   

Tal Cohen

Tal moved to Ithaca 15 years ago from Israel. She has more than 25 years’ experience in marketing, branding and communications. Tal is very involved in the community through BLOC (Business Leaders of Colors) and Alternatives where she helps small businesses with their marketing. She is an active member of the Chamber of Commerce, is on the Board of Habitat for Humanity, a woman business owner and an entrepreneur who has created a catering business including building her own commercial kitchen.

Tal has volunteered in hundreds of ways throughout her life in any place and way she can to help people where they need help. During Covid-19 she made birthday cakes for children celebrating their birthdays during quarantine at pay what you can/if you can, to make sure that no child was not celebrated.

Tal speaks 3 languages – English, Danish and Hebrew, has travelled the world and loves traveling and believes strongly in community, people and making a difference.

Rebekah Carroll

For the past two years, Rebekah Carroll has been the Owner and CEO of STATEMENTS Accounting & Consulting Services, a well-respected and growing firm located in Montour Falls, NY. Prior to that, Rebekah had served the Watkins Glen and Schuyler County business community as the President & CEO of the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce. In this role, she developed a passion for supporting businesses of every size throughout the Finger Lakes region.
 
Rebekah began her career in the accounting office of Schuyler Hospital, where she worked for seven years. In 2005, when she resigned from the hospital to stay home with her young children, she was functioning in the capacity of Assistant Director of Human Resources and Junior Accountant. For the next three years, Rebekah was the sole-proprietor of two different businesses: a registered group daycare (REBEKAH’S PLACE DAYCARE) and a consulting business. While wearing her “consultant” hat, she contracted with Corning’s Gaffer District (Corning, NY) as its Interim Director of Operations, performed all billing services for two small medical offices, performed sales tax recovery projects for local non-profit organizations, and prepared small business and personal income tax returns. 
 
Rebekah is proud to say that she has lived in the area since she was 11. She currently lives in Montour Falls with her husband, Rick, and their children: Ruby, Ryanna, Erin, Ali, Alicia, and Adam.  She earned her Associate’s Degree in Business Administration and Accounting from Corning Community College in 2009. She completed Leadership Schuyler in 2010 and graduated from Chamber Institute with a focus on Organizational Management in 2015.
 
Astra Titus
 
Astra Titus, JD, MSW is a law and social policy analyst and strategist, an entrepreneur, and a fervent mother and wife. Her career has focused on developing and implementing legislation, policy, and programs that serve and/or enhance social justice law and policy. Throughout her career Astra has worked with and within a wide variety of institutions: social service agencies, public interest law firms, small businesses, social policy foundations and think tanks, city and state governments and court systems, State Supreme Court Justices, and the US Congress. From 2019 to 2021, Astra was the owner and CEO of The Curious George Store in Cambridge, MA. She now consults with start-ups and small businesses to aid in organizational development and sustainment.

Astra and her husband Lee have 2 awesome boys – Jose and Hank. They live on Seneca Lake in upstate New York.

Alternatives Federal Credit Union has partnered with Gladys Brangman from Business Leaders of Colors (BLOC) to offer free business consultations to entrepreneurs of color. Sign up for a consultation with Gladys today! Are you a local business owner of color? Visit BLOC's website to join their network!

Alternatives Federal Credit Union has partnered with Civil Advocacy Project, Inc. to offer regular office hours with attorney Veronica Johnson at the branch location at 125 N Fulton St Ithaca, NY. Civil Advocacy Project provides legal advocacy and advising to income qualified small businesses, on a sliding scale basis. Civil Advocacy Project can assist in matters such as the formation of LLCs of other entities, thinking through the adoption of appropriate business policies, or adopting contract templates.

Consultations are available to schedule with Veronica now. This service is open to the public. There is no charge for the first appointment. Office hours are Tuesdays 12:30pm – 4:30pm.

For additional information, please contact Veronica Johnson at [email protected]

You may also contact Business Development Manager, Eileen Peet, [email protected] or 607-216-3425 to learn more.

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