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Hudson Valley Concierge Service supports local high school students with annual college scholarships

On June 2nd Hudson Valley Concierge Service partnered with Community Matters 2 to award scholarships to two students from Poughkeepsie High School. The Reach for the Stars Scholarship was created by Micah Bennett and L’Quette Taylor. Micah’s role as Communication Director for CM2 gives him the ability to be a public liaison for the community, listening to their concerns and facilitating solutions. He also assists in planning events and supports L’Quette and the CM2 mission throughout the local area. 

“I thought to myself, why can’t we doing something bigger, two men working together to benefit others. Put your best foot forward and lead by example.”

Micah Bennett

Micah shared how he became involved in the organization and scholarship fund. “I joined the CM2 Board because it’s mission aligned with my passion for community and my personal goals. As an entrepreneur, I always wanted to give back. I wanted a way to be a source of inspiration for others. As my business grew, I was introduced to L’Quette while attending several local events. I would hear him speaking at these events and thought, who is this guy? I was extremely impressed with what he was accomplishing with is organization. I knew he and I were going to were going to be best friends. From there, we rolled together like rocks down a hill.”

Micah has a strong vision and endless passion. He loves serving others in his community. “I should be able to connect and work with people regardless of their positions, jobs, class, etc.”

During the past year, many scholarships, and donations to non-profit organizations in the local area have dropped off significantly. It was then that Micah knew this was the perfect opportunity to do more.

“I thought to myself, why can’t we doing something bigger, two men working together to benefit others. Put your best foot forward and lead by example. If we can use our influence and platforms collectively, we could counteract all the negative we are hearing about on the news. Too many good things in our community get drowned out among the noise. This was our way to give back.”

Micah Bennett

Micah continued, “We wanted to go big and make an impact and follow the momentum. Our community really needs it now. I thought, what do our people need? What is the next step for our community? We found that education of kids 11-17 is our sweet spot and that would make the most impact.”

Micah shared where some of his drive came from. A few great mentors from his past came to mind.

“When I was in school, Mr. Goodermoulte taught me entrepreneurship. I loved that class. He told us that risk is inevitable. With entrepreneurship, it comes daily. He would ask the class, “What are you going to do with it and how will you have your customers understand what you do?” That phrase has stuck with me ever since.”

Micah shared insights from another influential mentor in his past. “Mr. Witte, my math teacher was amazing. He never gave up on me. He was a hard Brooklyn type of guy. He loved sharing the obvious, he was very “matter of fact speaking” and it resonated with me. I was able to relate with him at a deeper level. Learning the value of math taught me how far in life numbers would take you. He never gave up on me, he worked tirelessly to teach me the basics and laid a strong foundation for my life. With him I took away the power of focus. You may not like everything, but you need to know a little bit about something.”

With a solid foundation of drive and community spirit, it easily shines a light on how Micah’s effort to give back has been a common thread throughout his life and career. This year Hudson Valley Concierge and Community Matters 2 gave out several scholarships totaling $3750 dollars to students from Poughkeepsie and Highland High Schools.

On a recent Facebook video posted after the event, L’Quette Taylor shared how impressed he was about this year’s recipients.  “One of the things that I saw that was truly inspiring to me was this year’s achievements. The Poughkeepsie High School Valedictorian had a 101 GPA. The Salutatorian had a 99.8 GPA. Each were two black women. That is amazing and should be celebrated.”

Micah shared his vision for the future of the joint scholarship. “Our goal is to give 5 to 10 student scholarships in the coming years. We are aiming high and want to make a huge impact. Whether we achieve it physically or not, that is the goal we will achieve with community support.”

This year’s Reach for the Stars Scholarship winners included 6 students, Makayla Lanier, Raejanae A. Wilson and Carlos Reyes of Poughkeepsie High School. Highland High School winners included Dana Georghiou, Christian Schaible, and Destinie Clarke.

If you or your business would like to join HVCS and CM2 in honoring the next generation of students with college scholarships, you can reach out to L’Quette Taylor at [email protected] or Micah Bennett at [email protected] for details.

About the sponsoring companies:

Started in 2018, Community Matters 2, Inc. has fostered the connections between local Poughkeepsie organizations to take pride in their neighborhoods and to focus on the younger generation coming up. We believe for a community to thrive, people must work together and be the change or improvement they are asking for. Visit their web site here: https://www.communitymatters2.org/

HV Concierge began servicing clients in 2012. It was created to fill a growing need across the Hudson Valley for personal and transportation services for busy individuals, businesses, and families alike. It’s mission is  to provide 3 exceptional services: Transportation, Delivery and Personal. Their premise is to give clients their time back being in 2 places at 1 time. They are a full-service business that covers Dutchess, Orange and Ulster Counties as well as the surrounding area. Learn more about their services by visiting HV Concierge on The DPVN Network at:  https://www.dpvn.net/hvconciergeservice

Micah Bennett – For The Record

Micah Bennett, CEO of Hudson Valley Concierge Service was recently highlighted by Marist College in their For The Record series. As an alumnus of Marist College, Micah had the opportunity to share his story of how his career started within the hospitality business.

“From the time a guest gets out of their car and walks through those double doors, you have 30 seconds to change that person’s day, give them the best experience, and put a smile on their face.”

MICAH BENNETT

Photo: Marist College – For the Record

SASHA TUDDENHAM tells the story of how it all began. Read more about his journey as a highlighted alumnus of Marist College here: https://maristftr.com/micah-bennett

For The Record is an initiative that was established in 2016 by Marist College’s student newspaper the Marist Circle. The idea of the initiative was introduced by then Editor in Chief Bernadette Hogan ’17 and Creative Director, Goodman Lepota ‘18. The initiative was created to highlight inspiring stories of students from Marist College. It was presented in three different ways; through photography displayed at a gallery exhibition, an web-online version, and weekly magazines. It featured 74 student’s stories. The success of the initiative came from attracting more than 400 gallery visitors. This included having more than 40,000 unique visitors on the website and engaged up to 3000 student newsletter subscribers.

How this Minority Owned Concierge Business is Changing the Personal Service Landscape

Micah Bennett – Owner of Hudson Valley Concierge Service

In a world where time has become a commodity for the modern busy lives we lead, one company has risen to the challenge to provide a level of service that is second to none. From medical and airport transportation, courier and delivery services to personal shopping, Hudson Valley Concierge Services has become the authority in simplifying your life.

We had a chance to meet with the owner and CEO, Micah Bennett to get a glimpse into how HV Concierge started, his views around entrepreneurship and his personal philosophy on building a minority owned business in today’s competitive landscape.

Micah, how would you describe HV Concierge to a potential client?

“HV Concierge provides three services: Transportation, Delivery and Personal Services. Our Premise is to give our client their time back being in 2 places at 1 time. We can pick up your groceries, wait on line for a new item release as well provide medical and airport transportation.”

“I always had a passion for helping others and starting my own business watching and working with my parents. My parents always said if you want it, go work for it. Even though I came from a well to do family. The point was you needed to earn your keep.  I started shoveling snow, walking seniors or neighbors’ pets, cutting grass, washing neighbors’ cars. I noticed that I had a gift to generate and run a business on a small scale, so I was confident that I could start one, one day. “

It is said that it takes a defining moment that spurs individuals into action, what was yours?

“In 2012, I graduated from Marist college, and I wanted to grow throughout the company of Marriott, but I didn’t want to relocate away from my family again.  I just got back from being in Binghamton for 3 years attending Broome Community College and I didn’t want to be away and there was no room for me to advance my career here locally. I was willing to work at McDonalds and work up the ladder, but they turn me down. Can you believe it McDonalds turned me down a Marist Graduate?” Micha laughs, “ I was offered a job for Ross Stores right after I graduated from Marist I turned a 50K job down in NYC. I didn’t want to miss out on life from just traveling.”

I said you know what, I’m going to make something happen for myself and I think the time is now to create my own opportunity.

MICAH BENNETT

Every entrepreneur has a moment that stands out. Micah’s moment came after connecting his innate skills with opportunity by helping others in his community with miscellaneous tasks. “I didn’t even know the whole time I was doing concierge work. Literally clients made a request and I got it done. That was my “Ahh Ha moment” and Hudson Valley Concierge Service was born.”

Micah started out with personal services and delivery/courier clients. In 2015 Micah added Hudson Valley Concierge Service Transportation.  “Clients loved that they could now get driven to the store or somewhere local without riding in a taxicab with it smelling like smoke, driving with poor driving experience, drug habits, etc. What we provide is peace of mind and assurance that you are safe and going to have a world class experience.”

As a business owner, how would you describe your management and leadership style?

“I would describe my management and leadership style with these 3 styles – Laissez-faire, Charismatic, and a Pacesetting. I have a hands-off approach; I do not like to micromanage unless I have too. But I like to have team members that are free thinkers and include me when the time is needed. Pick up the task and go. We know the vision, the plan, the goal. I lead with love, charm, build relationships amongst my team, listen, and learn their internal goals and external goals so we all achieve together. I expect my team to continuously to be working in the sense building the brand. Even though I have high benchmarks for our team to attain.”

“Our team works in a cohesive manner to streamline and work efficiently and effectively.”

The word “entrepreneurship” gets thrown around a lot these days, how does that apply to you in 2021? 

“I define it as one who decides to think outside the box, knows they’re about to take a road of risk and adventure. The journey is both rewarding and a great life lesson. Achieving money is not one desire but seeing the development of their vision coming to life. The greatest gift is when your vision impacts and changes the lives of others!”

“You have to have the right mindset that you’re going to fight through every day and you’re going to make this business work!”

MICAH BENNETT

What would you say to other minorities if they are considering starting their own business?

“Dive in jump in. On my very first day of sharing my business to the world I was faced with racism. Today by God’s grace I am here to stay. If I can do it so can you. It doesn’t matter if your black, purple, green, India, Spanish, White, Arabic, race should never determine or predict what you can or will do. “

Micah continues, “Be committed, be consistent, be true, love yourself, love your family, love your friends, treat people with respect and if someone is in need help them; food, clothes, talk, etc. and If you put God first, all will fall into place.  In the bible God says “Ears have not heard, eyes have not seen, mind has not imagined what I have in store for you”. With that being said, if you have a talent and a skills that people can use do not waste time, step into your spotlight and create what you want. God is there to guide you so START Working!”

What advice would you give other minority owned businesses as they navigate the current business landscape in 2021?

“Research, plan, and implement. Ask questions there are a lot of resources out there. This pandemic has shown us that we need to be flexible and learn how to adapt. If you learn anything listen to your customers, focus on the ones you serve already. And just give them a call and find out what ways they could use your service or product get feedback.  If you don’t have to create new client and you can resell or remarket to a current client that’s a win. They will also tell their friends and you will solidify a quality base of support – Quality vs Quantity.”

Do you have any mentors and if so, how do they help you grow Hudson Valley Concierge Service?

“I have many mentors more specific my parents and L’Quette Taylor (more like we mentor each other),  Ramon Pinero and Dave Astiant. My business has increased multiple ways but the most impact that I really enjoyed and loved was seeing the human factor, the connection of my company with the community during the Covid Pandemic. Stepping up partnering with other business, non-for-profits feeding the -homeless, sick , shut in, front line workers. HVCS was truly able to step in the light and connect on a micro level with our community because of L’Quettes organization, Community Matters 2.”

Micah attributes many things to his success; His parents, wife, kids, staff, church, family, and God. The overarching theme for is having people believe in him and leaning on a great support system. Micah smiles “I was instilled with a solid foundation from early age, manners, respect, work ethic, love, helping others and emphasis on family.”

Looking back, is there anything that you would do differently in your career?

“Honestly no I am grateful for the course and the journey I am on. It literally was a reason and only God knows. I am simply happy now that instead of being resistant to go after my goals I’m happy that I am now following my dreams.”

HV CONCIERGE SERVICE TEAM