In 1992, after a decade spent working in a public relations position, Nancy Gold struck out on her own. “I decided that after 10 years, change would be a good idea,” she recalls. “I had picked my company’s name, chosen the logo and printed business cards, and ended my job on a Friday. The next Monday, I launched the Gold Standard.” She’s been in business for herself ever since.
Gold grew up in California, then came east to major in history at Wellesley. After a stint teaching English in Hong Kong and living in Brooklyn, she moved to the Valley and went into public relations, eventually becoming director of marketing and public affairs for the nonprofit Historic Hudson Valley.
“I learned a lot about communications, public relations, and dealing with the business community and media. All that experience came in handy when I opened my own business,” says Gold, who lives in Katonah.
Gold’s firm handles everything from press relations and advertising to events, social media, and Web site development. “That’s what I love about it. There’s such a variety of content,” she says. “In any given day I’m dealing with clients who run anything from hotels, hospitals, arts groups, and small businesses.” Gold says handling this wide spectrum of clients doesn’t get confusing: it’s “just a matter of keeping all the balls in the air at the same time.”
Gold’s clients range from startups and small businesses to large companies, as well as arts organizations, nonprofits, and health-care services. The Gold Standard also focuses on regional tourism and marketing, including the promotion of the popular Hudson Valley Restaurant Week.
In 2008, the company was nationally certified by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, an organization that helps firms owned and run by women to succeed. In order to support others, she cochaired the Alliance of Hudson Valley Women Business Owners; since 2005, she has been a board member of the Women’s Enterprise Development Center, a nonprofit group that offers training for female entrepreneurs in the lower Hudson Valley. “I really believe in helping and mentoring others; I could have used more of that kind of support when I started out,” she explains, citing the importance of having a long-term, concrete business plan as advice she frequently gives to others.
Gold is a firm believer in the Valley’s economic viability. “There’s a lot of business out there, regardless of the recession. I think there’s tremendous opportunity in the region; there’s a lot of room for finding your own level as a business and making yourself known.”
Fledgling female entrepreneurs shouldn’t shy away from the ups and downs of owning their own business, Gold says. “Creating a life doing work that you’re passionate about is well worth the stress and effort. It’s very satisfying. Don’t be afraid to go out and live your dreams.”