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Buffalo Next: What to know about the week ahead for Buffalo Niagara business | Business Local

What to know about the week ahead

An annual conference on racial disparities in health care takes on added significance this year in the wake of the racist mass shooting at a tops market on Buffalo’s predominantly Black East Side.

The gunman charged with killing 10 and injuring three people is an avowed white supremacist and the hate crime drew international attention to segregation and poverty in Buffalo.

The Igniting Hope conference on Saturday, Aug. 13 at the University at Buffalo’s Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences – and on Zoom – offers a means for the community to hold discussions and take action on social justice issues, said one of its organizers, dr Tim Murphy, a SUNY Distinguished Professor at Jacobs.


The Igniting Buffalo Conference offers a means for the community to hold discussions and take action on social justice issues, said one of its organizers, Dr. Tim Murphy, a SUNY Distinguished Professor at Jacobs.

Mark Mulville/News file photo

The free conference will run from noon to 7 pm and the 2022 theme is “Advocating in a New Reality: Breaking Barriers, Maintaining Resilience and Reconstructing a Community of Care.” Registration is at

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Igniting Hope, now in its fifth year, has resulted in lasting efforts including three new local entities aimed at addressing health disparities: the Buffalo Center for Health Equity, UB’s Community Health Equity Research Institute and the Erie County Office for Health Equity.

This year’s Igniting Hope keynote speakers are:

• Rev. Dr. Heber Brown III, founder of the Black Church Food Security Network, which advances food security and food sovereignty by co-creating Black food ecosystems anchored by Black congregations in partnership with Black farmers.

• dr Ruth S. Shim, associate dean of diverse and inclusive education, director of cultural psychiatry at the University of California, Davis, and co-author of “Social (In)Justice and Mental Health.”

• Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, activist, professor of African American Studies at Northwestern University and author of “Race for Profit: How Banks and the Real Estate Industry Undermined Black Home Ownership.”

The Buffalo Niagara Partnership will host a virtual workshop at noon Tuesday on “Creating a Positive Work Environment.” The event is free for BN360 individual and corporate members, and $25 for nonmembers.

Niagara County WorkSourceOne will host an outdoor job fair 11 am to 2 pm Wednesday (weather permitting) at Ida Fritz Park, 105 West Ave. in Lockport. Nearly 40 employers are registered to attend.

Community Access Services (CAS) of WNY, a local nonprofit affiliate of Evergreen Health that helps communities of color in Buffalo and Erie County access health care, will host its annual backpack giveaway and community event from 11 am to 4 pm Friday, Aug. 12 at the organization’s main office, 3297 Bailey Ave.

Each year, CAS hosts the free community event to provide students with school supplies for the upcoming school year. In addition to distributing supply-filled backpacks, the event will feature kid-friendly interactive activities, community resource and information tables, free snacks, music and more. CAS also wants to offer rapid HIV testing for adults on-site.

Supplies will be distributed on a first come, first served basis.

Students at the University at Buffalo’s clinical nutrition master’s program at UB’s School of Public Health and Health Professions are greeting patrons at the Tops on Jefferson Avenue with free nutrition information and counseling, food samples and store tours. The students are soon-to-be dietitians who aim to serve the community’s nutrition needs now and in the future.

The Tops location reopened July 15 following extensive renovations after a white supremacist targeted the store, located in a predominantly Black neighborhood, shooting and killing 10 people and injuring three others there on May 14.

The UB nutrition students will be at the store offering information on specific health themes for three more dates this month: 4 to 8 pm Aug. 8 (oral health); 4 to 8 pm Aug 16 (general nutrition); and 10 am to 2 pm Aug 26.

This newsletter from The Buffalo News will bring you the latest coverage on the changing Buffalo Niagara economy – from real estate to health care to startups. Read more at


Recent news tied to Buffalo Niagara’s economy

Rising natural gas prices are expected to lead to a big jump in profits at National Fuel Gas during the coming year.

Developer Douglas Jemal has a deal to buy the Mansion on Delaware.

SUNY-Erie Community College students and faculty are raising concerns about plans to reshape the school.

Athenex’s battered stock jumped after reports from India indicated two companies there are interested in buying the struggling Buffalo pharmaceutical company.

Plans to bring apartments to vacant buildings in the Millard Fillmore hospital complex at Gates Circle are moving forward.

New Era Cap Co. is bringing on new minority investors – and they also are the Buffalo-based sports apparel company’s most prominent customers.

A Grand Island pharmaceutical company is taking the wraps off a $76 million expansion that brought in 100 new jobs.

The state is gearing up to start offering bonuses to health care workers as part of efforts to keep and attract people to a field that has struggled to fill vacant positions.

Five local companies are getting nearly $400,000 in grants from National Grid for expansion projects.

Buffalo Bills and Sabers owner Terry Pegula is branching out into the financial services world.

How can banking services be brought to underserved communities? Bank on Buffalo plans to take them on the road.

New Kaleida Health CEO Don Boyd is building out his executive team and has announced several key appointments.

The state’s legal cannabis market is still taking shape, but there are plenty of opportunities and pitfalls for storesgrowers and anyone else looking to jump into what likely will be a big new business in New York.

A Niagara Falls fitness equipment maker has been acquired by a private equity-backed company that already owns some big national brands.

Legislation to restore the pension savings of the retired Delphi workers has gained support from the left and the right in Congress. It passed the House on Wednesday, and supporters are hopeful the Senate will follow suit.

A bill that would fund a series of technology hubs across the country – and possibly in the Buffalo Niagara region – has been passed by the Senate.

Buffalo Next reporters Jonathan D. Epstein, Jon Harris, Natalie Brophy, Matt Glynn, Janet Gramza, Samantha Christmann and Mike Petro contributed to this roundup.


Five reads from Buffalo Next:

1. With Covid waning, Tourists are returning to Niagara Falls. But international travelers still haven’t come back in the same numbers and that’s leaving a big hole in the local tourism market. Inflation and fears of a slowing economy aren’t helping, either.

2. Rich Products relies on innovations and new products to keep its business growing – and a good portion of those efforts are based in Buffalo.

3. The rules for would-be cannabis store operators remain murky – and that’s just one of the challenges they face as the launch of a legalized marijuana marketplace approaches.

4. David Balkin, the new president of SUNY Erie Community College, is moving quickly to make his mark on the struggling institution.

5. Amazon’s big distribution center in the Town of Niagara is approved, but it still has plenty of hurdles to clear.

The Buffalo Next team gives you the big picture on the region’s economic revitalization. Email tips to [email protected] or reach Buffalo Next Editor David Robinson at 716-849-4435.

Email tips to [email protected]

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