by Jen Topa
It brings me pleasure to serve in the role of Street Liaison for the City of Rochester, because the position merges my background in Sales and Marketing with my love of city living. Before taking a job with Highland Planning, I spent eight years working for Automatic Data Processing (ADP) in New York, Cleveland, and then Rochester. Fresh out of college, my sales territory was the Garment District in New York and I soon grew to love the stories that unfolded as I spent my days foot canvassing. And, yes, sweat shops did exist.
Building relationships is my passion, and for the past five years, I have been walking the commercial corridors in the southeast and northwest quadrants of Rochester. Each time I embark on a new area, I am fascinated by the entrepreneurs I meet and their passion for the businesses that they run. There are so many interesting stories within each storefront, and it brings me joy to discover each one.
I focus on informing businesses about the financial assistance programs that the City has to offer and I work with business associations to attract people to their commercial districts. Our goal is to spur investment through grant and loans. Through my work on Show on Monroe, South Clinton Goes Batty and Springtime on Dewey, I have helped to plan events that showcase these vibrant avenues. I also help to organize Clean Sweep, advertising campaigns and small business promotions.
Ultimately, I hope that my work will improve the commercial corridors, occupy all the storefronts, and help businesses thrive. When it is all said and done, I want to have a positive impact on my city.