Panel to Discuss the Impact of the Pandemic on Small Businesses


On Wednesday, July 22, The Retired Men’s Association of Greenwich, Inc. (RMA) will present: “Greenwich Small Businesses and the Impact of the Pandemic” – a panel discussion with accountant Sean Dowling, banker David Moore, restaurateur Caren Vizzo St. Phillip, and retail shop owners Randy and Kimberly Caravella. The virtual program will take place at 11 a.m. To view the webinar, log on to: bit.ly/30IBj21

Press reports on the economic downturn caused by the Covid 19 pandemic refer to the looming collapse of many small businesses in the country. According to a poll by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce more than 40% of this nation’s 30 million small businesses could close permanently this year. The RMA has organized a panel discussion to see how the pandemic has impacted some of the small businesses in our town.

Owners of three small businesses will talk about how the pandemic is affecting or hurting their businesses. And we will hear reports on those issues from a banker and an accountant who will also speak on the effectiveness of government-related programs in response to the pandemic, including the PPP and CARES programs to help small business.

The panelists are:

  • Sean Dowling is a CFP and President of the Dowling Group in Riverside, a Wealth Advisory firm founded in 1979. He has over 15 years’ experience in Wealth, Tax and Investment Advisory services and has been named a Top Wealth Manager of Westchester County each year since 2013 by Westchester Magazine. A graduate of the University of Connecticut, Sean earned his B.A. degree in Accounting & Finance. Sean is also a graduate of Sacred Heart University’s College for Financial Planning. He has written several articles on wealth management and tax planning. Sean grew up in Old Greenwich and still lives there with his wife and two children.

 

  • David Moore is a commercial lender with Greenwich Bank and Trust and Connecticut Community Bank, primarily lending to small businesses. His specialty is the SBA 7a government backed lending program. Prior to banking, he was with the world’s largest privately held accounts payable recovery audit company. He earned a B.A. and M.A in English from Western Connecticut State University He grew up in Riverside, has been a banker in Greenwich for twenty years, and currently resides with his wife and two children in Darien.

 

  • Caren Vizzo St. Phillip is owner and General Manager of Caren’s Cos Cobber, an American-style bar and grill on East Putnam Ave. in Cos Cob which opened in 2011. She recently also contracted to manage the restaurant at The Griff, newly named Cobber North, located on the patio at the Griffith E. Harris Golf Course in Greenwich. Caren graduated from Greenwich High School and Wheelock College.

 

  • Randy Caravella owns Post Wine & Spirits on the Post Rd in Cos Cob, a boutique wine & spirit shop established in 1987. It carries an exceptional selection of wines from around the world and the largest selection of single malt Scotch in Connecticut, and it specializes in helping customers with wine and food pairings.

 

  • Kim Caravella is Randy’s wife. She owns and operates “habitatgreenwich,” a unique gift and interior design boutique in Cos Cob. “habitatgreenwich” carries a fresh chic mix of organic and modern style, focusing on unique handcrafted gifts, furniture, home and entertaining pieces, original artwork, and everyday essentials. Kim, a career Interior Designer, graduated from Fairfield University and attended the New York School of Interior Design. She also operates the “habitatgreenwich” Gift Shop at the Greenwich Botanical Center and two Interior Design Firms: habitatgreenwich•home and separately co-owns C&C Interior Design with Claudia Duval.
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