Pet care prospers amid pandemic: Sonia’s Pet Grooming

The pandemic rocked a seismic shift in many industries, but pet care has had a rally. According to Forbes, “78% of pet owners acquired pets during the pandemic. Then, with the migration back to the brick-and-mortars, Forbes continues, “The majority of pet owners have increased spending on their pets to compensate for being away from home more.” Well, pet care is the bailiwick of our next featured minority woman-owned business! Drumroll, please: Sonia Nathan runs Sonia’s Pet Groomin...
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Fellow woman-owned business Brooklyn Robot Foundry inspires young engineers

Founder and owner of Brooklyn Robot Foundry, Jenny Young “When we picked [our son] up, he greeted us beaming and said, ‘That was the best! I am going back there tomorrow and the next day and the next day and the next day.’” These are the words of a thankful parent whose boy’s interest has been piqued and imagination set in motion by the robot-building classes at Brooklyn Robot Foundry. Since 2011, Jenny Young has run Brooklyn Robot Foundry, Benchmark client and fellow woman-owned busine...
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C’est si bon with Claire and Odile at WantedDesign

At WantedDesign Manhattan in May 2022, Odile Hainaut (center) and Claire Pijoulat (right), Co-Founders of WantedDesign, initiating the Emerging Designers Showcase hosted by Amy Devers| Jenna Bascom Photography Two extremely stylish polyglot ladies are at the helm of our next featured women-owned business client, the design fair WantedDesign: Odile Hainaut and Claire Pijoulat. As if we needed any more proof that Canva and its ilk (hiss) will never hold a candle to living, breathing pro...
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Why did colonists burn down NYC in 1776? Joyce Gold will tell you, on a walking tour

Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano once recounted an African proverb: “Until the gazelles write their own history, the lions will be the heroes of the hunt.” All the more reason to find out what’s gone down in this capital city of world finance by booking a historic walking tour! Joyce Gold runs Joyce Gold History Tours of New York, another Benchmark client who is a fellow woman-owned business. She is a New York history teacher at New York University and The New School. She has...
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Minority woman-owned Pavilion on the Terrace makes events SO AMAZING!

Our next featured Minority & Women Owned Business Enterprise is Pavilion on the Terrace. Owner Kecia Weaver was already running a law practice when she took on the task of transforming one of the last remaining Greek Revival mansions, on Staten Island’s North Shore, into a premier event venue. Over six years, Kecia painstakingly renovated the Pavilion to its former glory and prestige. Pavilion hosts weddings, anniversaries, retirement parties, Sweet 16s, quinceañeras, Bar / Bat Mitzva...
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Rossana Russo keeps Lunella’s a family-run, autentico affair

Ready for date night? Ready for Little Italy, fritto di calamari, homemade gnocchi, and the perfect espresso to pick you back up? Well, you can satisfy that with a woman-owned business – Lunella Ristorante Italiano. Restaurateur Rossana Russo’s Italian immigrant family has owned and operated various restaurants on Mulberry Street for generations. Lunella’s is located on a narrow block of Nolita (North Little Italy) that evokes old times. There’s the reassuring 1950s-style moon o...
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Metropolitan Music Community performs, with a social conscience

The Metropolitan Music Community (MMC) had Benchmark print their 2021 Winter Concert program. MMC provides adult instrumentalists the opportunity to make music in a friendly setting and share it with the public. The program brims with socially conscious themes: George Floyd, music from marginalized parts of the world, and more. “Unspoken,” the first piece, recognizes George Floyd and Black Lives Matter, the largest U.S. protest movement ever, even larger than the one surrounding the Vi...
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Xavier Mission provides basic needs services and empowerment programs for New Yorkers in need

Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere. More about Benchmark's support for the Sustainable Development Goals. “In a world of plenty, hunger kills over 2.1 million people each year at a minimum. This is one of the ways in which poverty kills, and it is faced by billions of ordinary people all over the world each day. In every country, the poorest people live shorter lives and face earlier deaths than those who are not poor.” (Inequality Kills, Oxfam, 2022) This certainly applies...
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In NYC’s ailing estuary, Billion Oyster Project restoring obliterated oyster population

A Billion Oyster Project participant shows a colony of orange sheath tunicates, a type of sea squirt that they often find at their Oyster Research Stations. Benchmark customer Billion Oyster Project is on a mission to restore the murky New York Harbor one oyster at a time. A single one of these humble mollusks has the power to filter up to 50 gallons of water a day. On top of that, we hurricane-worn New Yorkers should be interested to know that establishing oyster reefs forms a natural st...
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Green Top Farms links local ag to school meals and deals with pandemic hunger

During the pandemic, many Benchmark customers scaled down their production in 2020.  For Al Raddock at Green Top Farms, it was the opposite.  Their food distribution of local, seasonal ingredients ramped up in the face of expanding food insecurity.  Working families' livelihoods evaporated for lack of a public health system strong enough to prevent disease outbreak and to take swift, unified action at critical times.   In schools, Green Top Farms provides food that me...
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