We’re here to help with your manufacturing needs,  let us know how we can help.

Online registration is officially closed. If you are still interested in exhibiting, please contact Steve Melito for more info.
Those who wish to join us on the day of the expo may do so at the registration desk on Wednesday, June 8th. Please bring $25 in cash, check or credit/debit card.

About the EXPO

Herkimer College
100 Lou Ambers Drive
Herkimer, NY 13350
June 7
Exhibitor Set-up and Reception
4:00 PM – 8:00 PM

June 8
Main Event, Exhibitor Showcase & Networking
8:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Strong, active, and energetic. That’s New York’s Mohawk Valley, the heart of the Empire State and where innovation, efficiency, and profitability are about to grow as fast as the grass in springtime.

Join us for Vitality in the Valley, an annual June event that’s like no other. From the business connections at the networking reception, to the exhibitor showcase, to breakout sessions on fast-moving Agricultural and Manufacturing tracks, you’ll travel from business-as-usual to beyond.

  • Ready to lower your energy costs and explore new technologies? Then take the Agricultural Solutions Track with SUNY Cobleskill’s Institute for Rural Vitality, NYSERDA, and National Grid.
  • Looking for funding opportunities, cybersecurity and operational improvements? Then take the Manufacturing Solutions Track with MVCC’s AIM, FuzeHub, Herkimer IDA, and others.

Don’t worry if you don’t know all of the acronyms. This friendly event lets you connect with the people within the organizations that can help your business grow.

Vitality in the Valley is organized by FuzeHub and hosted by Herkimer College in partnership with the Advanced Institute for Manufacturing (AIM), the Herkimer County Industrial Development Agency (IDA), and – for the first time ever – the Institute for Rural Vitality at SUNY Cobleskill.


  • 7:30 AM
    Doors Open
  • 8:00 AM - 8:30 AM
    Registration and Breakfast

    Location: Main Hall

  • 8:30 AM - 8:45 AM
    Welcome Addresses

    Location: RMCC Theater

    Master of Ceremonies: Everton H. Henriques
    Welcome: Cathleen McColgin, John Piseck, Franca Armstrong, Matt Watson, Elizabeth Lusskin

  • 8:45 AM - 9:00 AM
    Sponsor Presentations

    Location: RMCC Theater

    Lloyd Ploof – Square One Coatings, Jacob Perry – Neff Automation, Cory Albrecht – AIM, Bill McDonald – Herkimer College

  • 9:00 AM – 9:15 AM
    Keynote Speaker I

    Location: RMCC Theater

    John Lorence V.P. Manufacturing Engineering The Fountainhead Group

  • 9:15 AM – 10:15 AM
    Breakout Sessions: Part I

    Room 294

    Manufacturing Solutions Track: How to Fund, Build, and Market a Better Product​ (read more)

    Room 295

    Agriculture Solutions Track: Energy Saving Technology and Grant / Incentive Programs:(read more)

  • 10:15 AM – 12:00 PM
    Exhibitor Showcase & Networking

    Location: Main Hall

  • 12:00 PM - 1:15 PM
    Lunch and Main Keynote

    Location: Lower Level Dining Hall

    Marion Terenzio – President, SUNY Cobleskill

    Elizabeth Dribusch – CEO, NYS Farm Bureau

  • 1:15 PM – 2:00 PM
    Breakout Sessions: Part II

    Room 294

    Manufacturing Solutions Track: Cybersecurity Solutions for Manufacturing​ (read more)

    Room 295

    Agriculture Solutions Track: Energy Efficiency Programs and Funding Opportunities (read more)

  • 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
    Exhibitor Showcase & Networking

    Location: Main Hall

  • 3:00 PM
    Event Concludes




Liz Dribusch is the Chief Executive Officer of New York Farm Bureau (NYFB).  Prior to entering this role in May 2020, Ms. Dribusch was NYFB’s General Counsel and Director of Legal Affairs for more than 20 years. 
Elizabeth Dribusch
CEO, NY Farm Bureau
John Lorence is the Vice President of Manufacturing Engineering at The Fountainhead Group. Fountainhead Group is a Hand, Power & Lawn-care Tools company with an estimated 176 employees; and founded in 1888. John is a part of the Engineering & Technical team within the Engineering & Technical Department.
John Lorence
VP, Manufacturing Engineering - Fountainhead Group


Bill has served Herkimer College as associate dean of academic affairs for the Business, Health, Science and Technology division since 2017. Bill is responsible for the management of the division, including supervision and evaluation of full and part time faculty.
Bill McDonald
Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Herkimer Community College
Everton is a manufacturing virtuoso focused on helping the manufacturing community, industry, start-ups, local colleges and universities, and business leaders to advance innovation and technology.
Everton H. Henriques
NY MEP Solutions Manager | FuzeHub
Since 2007 Cory Albrecht has been assisting manufacturers in the Mohawk Valley Region through the New York State Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NY MEP) Program as the Director of MVCC’s Advanced Institute for Manufacturing (AIM).
Cory Albrecht
Director - AIM at MVCC
After serving on the Board of Directors for a number of years, and serving as Chairman for two, John was appointed to the position of Executive Director of the Herkimer County Industrial Development Agency.
John Piseck
Executive Director Herkimer County IDA
Dr. Cathleen C. McColgin joined Herkimer County Community College in June 2015 as the institution’s fourth president. Dr. McColgin previously served as provost and senior vice president at Onondaga Community College.
Dr. Cathleen McColgin
President, Herkimer College
Steve Melito is the Senior Solutions Specialist for FuzeHub and the host of its NYS Manufacturing Now podcast. He also moderates events for FuzeHub and is a regular contributor to its print and digital publications.
Steve Melito
Senior Solutions Specialist, FuzeHub
Lloyd has a Degree in Chemistry from Clarkson University, and is an author of numerous technical articles in industry trade journals. He possesses over 42 years in metal finishing, and is a Former International Product Manager for Functional Coatings at a large chemical supplier.
Lloyd Ploof
President - Square One Coating Systems
Dr. Marion Terenzio became the 12th president of the State University of New York College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill on July 1, 2015
Dr. Marion Terenzio
President, SUNY Cobleskill
Seth is a Program Coordinator at SUNY Cobleskill’s Institute for Rural Vitality (IRV). Seth coordinates the Institutes the Farm and Food Businesses Development Programs (FFBD) which primarily serves Mohawk Valley agriculture enterprises.
Seth Browe
IRV Program Coordinator, SUNY Cobleskill
Jacob is an experienced Technical Sales Engineer with over 10 years in manufacturing with a strong focus on providing solutions. Now based in Syracuse, Jacob is an alumnus of West Virginia University.
Jacob Perry
Technical Sales Representative, NEFF
Franca Armstrong is the Associate Vice President for Workforce Development and Dean of the Rome Campus for MVCC.  She has facilitated multiple innovative partnerships and serves on the boards of several local and state organizations focused on workforce development.
Franca Armstrong
Associate V.P. of Workforce Management, MVCC
Matt's 20 year career includes senior and executive roles in the public and private sectors, and he has extensive experience in organizational management, program development, policy, and advocacy.
Matt Watson
Executive Vice President for Small Business and Technology Development at Empire State Development, overseeing a portfolio of grant, loan and venture programs focused on small businesses and innovation sectors. 
Elizabeth Lusskin
Executive VP, Small Business Development - ESD