Are 50-Year-Olds The New Face Of Staten Island’s Entrepreneurs?

By Tracey Porpora
Staten Island Advance, N.Y.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) A new report, titled “Starting Later: Realizing the Promise of Older Entrepreneurs in New York City,” reveals that Staten Islanders over the age of 50 are starting businesses in record numbers, changing the face of entrepreneurship across the borough.

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y.

After a car accident caused temporary voice loss, speech pathologist Denise Cesare decided to reinvent herself.

The Bay Terrace resident launched a swimsuit business at the age of 54.

“It started after I created a makeshift swimsuit out of my own clothing. … I came up with T Suit because they’re bathing suits that fit people to a T,” she said of her online business.

Before she knew it, Cesare had a designer/manufacturer and was in business for herself.

“Today, I feel empowered to be able to run my own business. … I have gone through my share of trials and tribulations in my life that makes owning this business extra empowering. I wanted to show my son that women are powerful,” she added.

She is one of 10,324 Staten Islanders age 50 and older — or nearly one in eight working adults 50-plus in the borough — who own their own business, according to a new report published by the Center for an Urban Future.

The report, titled “Starting Later: Realizing the Promise of Older Entrepreneurs in New York City,” reveals that Staten Islanders over the age of 50 are starting businesses in record numbers, changing the face of entrepreneurship across the borough.

The study, which was funded by Capital One’s Future Edge Initiative, shows that the number of self-employed Staten Island residents 50 and over increased by 31 percent over the past decade — the second-fastest growth rate of any borough. The report also shows the number of business owners age 60 and over increased by 35 percent.

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