The Hudson Development Corporation is a private non-profit established in 1976 as a Local Development Corporation for the purposes of sustaining, promoting, and enabling business investment and employment opportunities, as well as strengthening the City of Hudson’s tax base to help secure its future as a desirable place to live work and invest.

To accomplish its mission the HDC shall:

  • Engage with existing businesses in the areas of business retention, expansion, and job creation.
  • Seek out and advocate for new businesses that add market diversity and job skills to our local economy.
  • Collaborate with local government to strengthen Hudson’s tax base and to plan for the future.

Learn More about Local Development Corporations here: HDC is LDC Explanation

Want to be a HDC Board Member? Please fill out this form with your resume/CV and interest letter and submit to Branda@hudsonfirst.com.

HDC Board Application 2021
(The document is a fillable form that you can download and send in electronically. )

Your application will be reviewed by the nominating committee and we’ll be in touch. After a cursory interview, the board may submit questions for you to answer at a board meeting. Thanks for you interest in advance!



Check this list of Economic Development and Community Support Projects that HDC has done for the City of Hudson in the Last 10 Years.

The Hudson Development Corporation’s Board is currently comprised of thirteen Directors, though may have a maximum of fifteen Directors.  Two Directors serve ex officio: the Mayor of the City of Hudson  and the President of the Common Council of the City of Hudson. The remaining eleven (11) Directors are elected to three-year terms, renewable for an additional three-year term. The Directors must be employed by an entity which does business in the greater Hudson Area or practice a trade or profession in the greater Hudson area.

The Directors are responsible for setting policy, supporting the Director and staff, guiding long-range planning and development, monitoring finances and working cooperatively to fulfill the mission of the organization.

Christine Jones, President
Nick Haddad, Vice President
Phil Forman, Treasurer
Paul Barrett, Secretary
Steve Dunn
Martha Lane
Seth Rogovy
Paul Colarusso
Kristen Keck
Pete Schram
Susan Knauss

Kamal Johnson, Mayor, City of Hudson
Tom DePietro, Common Common Council President


Branda Maholtz,
Executive Director
A native of the Pittsburgh, PA area, fell in love with Upstate life while completing her MFA at Syracuse University. Branda taught English and creative writing courses at various universities until moving to New York City for an Acquisitions Editor position at Penguin Group. A resident of Hudson since 2010, Branda has focused on community outreach and business development in various roles including Etsy, Inc. and the Hudson Opera House, as Mayor’s Aide for the City of Hudson all  while working as the Executive Assistant for HDC/HCDPA from 2014-2020. Branda now serves as the acting Executive Director for HDC/HCDPA.

The City of Hudson is located along the western banks of the Hudson River in Columbia County, New York. Hudson has inspired countless explorers, builders, artists, and entrepreneurs over the past two centuries– and continues to inspire a new tide of adventurers today.

After the Revolutionary War, a group of seafaring men from Providence and Newport, Nantucket and Edgartown, fearing retaliation from the British, sought a safe harbor for their vessels. In the spring of 1783, Thomas and Seth Jenkins set out to find such a place and found it in on the banks of the Hudson. They purchased a large tract of land known as Claverack Landing. By that fall, the founders of Hudson, most of whom were Quakers, began arriving in ships with their families and possessions. Some even brought with them houses that had been framed out in Nantucket.

At their first meeting in 1784, the founders, who called themselves Proprietors, set to work designing the city. In 1785, the City of Hudson was chartered, making it the first city to be chartered in the new United States.

By 1788, Hudson had become a commercial city with a considerable population, warehouses, wharves and docks, ropewalks, and the din of industry. Its economic mainstays were whaling, sealing, and international trade. The discovery of petroleum in the mid-1800s decreased the demand for whale oil, and this, combined with the coming of the railroad in the late 1840s, which transected the north and south bays, caused Hudson to enter a period of decline.

Even as the railroads sealed the fate of one era, they fostered the beginning of a new era and enabled new industries to prosper. In the 19th century, knitting mills and cotton mills opened and brickyards flourished, as did breweries and an iron works. But by the end of the 19th century the economy of the city once again began to decline. The cement industry, which had arrived about 1900 and dominated the economy until the Great Depression, finally closed in the late 1960s.

During the middle years of the 20th century, Hudson’s economy continued to be depressed, and because no one could afford to do so, or was able or interested in doing so, many of Hudson’s elegantly simple buildings, along with its mansions, rode through time unappreciated, neglected, then abandoned, and finally, for some, demolished. Despite depredation caused not only by neglect and the passage of time, but by planned demolition and ill-considered destruction, it remains a cause for celebration that the city of Hudson has retained so much of its superb architectural heritage.

In the past two decades, Hudson has renewed itself as it had twice before in the 18th and mid-19th centuries. The city, with its architecture and unique character, has come once more to be avidly appreciated, and more importantly, saved and restored by some long-time residents and by many new devotees of the city—all the spiritual if not the actual heirs of those who built—and rebuilt—Hudson better than they found it.

courtesy of Historic Hudson