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Team LBA

The LBA has a purpose-driven mission to grow the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the greater Olean area.

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Erick Laine

Erick Laine is the former CEO and Chairman of Cutco Corporation, who passed away in December 2020, at the age of 87. Mr. Laine is known for his remarkable entrepreneurial leadership and generosity in the Olean and greater Cattaraugus County community. The Laine Business Accelerator is funded by the Erick Laine Entrepreneurship Fund, a memorial created after his passing, through the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation (CRCF) and administered by Olean Business Development Corporation (OBDC).


Give First

Give First

The accelerator in a phrase - “Give first mentality.” The group aims to eliminate scarcity mindset in business and ignite and foster entrepreneurial spirit, by creating a sustainable business community that gives first to the community.

Help others to fly

Help Others to Fly

The cohort businesses may begin with a goal of individual business growth. However, they grow the most through the community that is formed among everyone in the program. A milestone for one, becomes a milestone for all to celebrate.

Inspire innovation

Inspire innovation

New ideas don’t easily spark without a group effort. The LBA Community encourages all forms of innovation, the more out of the box idea, the better. The cohort members bounce ideas off of one another and create solutions to each other's challenges that they may not have come up with otherwise.


tom cullen

Tom Cullen

Co-Founder, Director of the LBA (and director of SBU Innovation Center)

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bob forness

Bob Forness

LBA Managing Team Member (OBDC President & Executive Director)

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courtney curatolo

 Courtney Curatolo

LBA Managing Team Member (Director SBDC@JCC)

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sarah bray

Sarah Bray

LBA Co-Founder (JCC Associate Professor of Business & Entrepreneurship)

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jake theodore

Jake Theodore

LBA Intern (JCC Business Class of 2023, SBU Management Class of 2025)

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Steve McClain

Steve McClain

LBA Committee Chair-OBDC Board (Digital Marketing Manager-Cutco)

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kathleen martell

Kathleen Martel

LBA Managing Team Member (JCC - Director of Workforce Development)

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mac bush

Mackenzie Bush

LBA Co-Founder (SBU Marketing Class of 2023)

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Sean Campbell

Business Development & Operations Associate (OBDC)

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tripp breen

Tripp Breen

LBA Summer Intern (SBU Business Administration Class of 2023)

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jim stitt

Jim Stitt

LBA Co-Founder (Board Chairman-OBDC, Board Chairman-Cutco)

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todd palmer

Todd Palmer

SBU Management Chair, Professor of Entrepreneurship, Director of SBU C4 Student Consulting

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brianna shay

Brianna Shay

LBA Managing Team Member (Coordinator of Innovation and Entrepreneurship @ JCC)

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morgan wahl

Morgan Wahl

LBA Co-Founder (SBU MBA Class of 2022)

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riley polizzi

Riley Polizzi

LBA Intern (SBU Marketing Class of 2024)

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Saidy Bolya

LBA Intern (SBU Marketing Class of 2024)

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