About Us

Committed to our communities since 2014.

Smart Staffing Group, Inc. icon

Who We Are

SMART Staffing Group, Inc. is a full-service staffing and recruiting firm based in Poughkeepsie, NY that focuses on identifying and recruiting top talent for a diverse set of industries. A Certified Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE), our team is committed to putting people first.


Here, we understand the critical importance of developing talent solutions that align with your business’s values, strategy and culture. Acting as an extension of your HR department, we efficiently and consistently connect the right professionals to every opportunity. When you partner with SMART Staffing Group, Inc., you know that every candidate we recommend will be poised to add value.

Our Leadership

Mercy, Co-Owner

Mercy Turugh


Cecilia, Co-Owner

Cecilia Fiterman-Cook


Co-owners Cecilia Fiterman-Cook and Mercy Turugh met as coworkers in 2007 and immediately recognized the potential for a powerful business partnership. Both women immigrated to the United States and dreamed of starting and growing their own businesses. Recognizing both shared goals and the shared values of making their communities a better place, the two teamed up to form SMART Staffing Group, Inc. in 2014.

What started as an idea between two coworkers quickly grew into a successful, full-service staffing and workforce development firm. SMART Staffing Group, Inc. gained a reputation for excellence, thanks to the founders’ determination, hard work and commitment to service excellence. Based on that reputation, the firm quickly grew. Today, SMART Staffing Group, Inc. serves a variety of industries, is committed to developing the workforce of tomorrow, and serves a diverse client and candidate base in New York State, in the Mid-Hudson Valley area and in the Tri-State area.

our team


Kristie Gautier

Kristie Gautier is one of our Pre-ETS trainers. Kristie has her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Mercy College. She has worked in the education field for the past 7 years specializing in Special Education. Kristie has experience being a Transition Specialist in the school district which has allowed her to ease into the role of Pre-Employment Trainer here at Smart Staffing Group. Kristie has helped to transform the curriculum to be tailored for all learning levels and styles as well as build a rapport with each student that she comes in contact with and deliver the Pre-Ets training effectively and efficiently.


Diane Ritters

Diane Ritters is the career and Education Coordinator and has several years of experience working in the fields of Education and Psychology. She has a MS Ed from SUNY New Paltz and MA in Psychology from Marist College. Diane started her career as an Elementary School teacher and she currently teaches as an Adjunct Instructor at local colleges. She enjoys working with people to help them reach their goals.


Denise Mannese

Denise Mannese is the Pre-ETS Coordinator. Denise received her bachelor’s degree in early childhood education and administration from SUNY Empire State University. She has worked in the human services industry for 26 years, first as a director of a childcare center, and then in various roles working with the autistic population. Denise believes in the necessity of providing students with disabilities this valuable training to help prepare them for their life after high school. She values both the relationship building process and the training process and hopes to make a difference in the lives of those she serves.


Nicole Gibson

Nicole Gibson is the Administrative Coordinator. Nicole received her bachelor’s degree in theater from Quinnipiac University. What some may not know is that Nicole started here at Smart Staffing Group as an intern and moved her way up to being an official employee at Smart Staffing Group! In her role as the Administrative Coordinator, Nicole does it all! She has brought her technology savvy skills and bright personality to this organization to help it be the best it can be! She values all of the connections she has made to help her get to where she is today and hopes to reach both adults and youth to embark on their own personal journey.

Our Values

It is our mission to provide a talented and diverse workforce to help businesses succeed so communities prosper. We achieve that by living our core values.


Always looking for new strategies to improve changing needs in the workforce.


Committed to always doing the right thing.


Treat everyone with respect and dignity.


Value everyone’s contribution.


We work hard to provide results.


Creating synergy, achieving exceptional results.


Appreciating every opportunity to provide service.

Get started today

Call us at 845-433-0700, or drop us an email.


Latest News

Internship Placements

Some of our placed interns! We have placed interns at various locations such as ReStore, Family Services, Hudson River Truck and Trailer, and Community Animal

Read More