Robert J. Kresse, Chairman
Mr. Kresse resides in Buffalo and is an attorney with Hiscock & Barclay, LLP of Buffalo. Mr. Kresse serves on a number of boards and community organizations including the Margaret L. Wendt Foundation, King Urban Life Center, Martin House Restoration Corporation, Green Downtown Buffalo, Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy, Erie County Medical Center Lifeline Foundation, New York State Preservation League, and the Buffalo Green Fund. Mr. Kresse is a graduate of Canisius College and Georgetown University Law Center. “Bob Kresse’s enthusiasm and longstanding dedication has been instrumental in helping to protect cultural landmarks, support innovative programs and foster successful public-private partnerships that have helped improve the quality of life for Western New Yorkers,” stated former Governor Pataki. “I’m confident his energy and commitment as Chair of the Niagara River Greenway Commission at this critical and exciting time will help provide a strong foundation as it works to create opportunities among the scenic parklands and beautiful waterfronts that are hallmarks of the Buffalo-Niagara region.”
Paul A. Dyster, Vice-Chairman, Chairman,
Citizens Advisory Committee
Mr. Dyster currently serves as the Mayor of Niagara Falls. He resides in Niagara Falls and has extensive community and government experience. He served as a city councilman in Niagara Falls from 2000-2003, is a current member of the Executive Board of the Friends of the Buffalo Niagara Rivers (Buffalo, NY), a member of the Niagara River Environmental Coalition, a founding member of the Niagara Waterfront Revitalization Task Force (Niagara Falls, NY), a member of the Board of Directors of the Niagara Arts and Cultural Center, Inc. and member of the Board of Directors of the Niagara Experience Center, Inc. Previously, Mr. Dyster was Director of the Graduate Program in International Affairs and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics at Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. He is also the owner of Niagara Tradition, a local business specializing in retail and wholesale supply and manufacturing of ingredients and equipment for brewing and winemaking.
Alice Roth, Secretary
Alice Roth served as Mayor of the City of Tonawanda from 1990 thru 2001. As Mayor, Mrs. Roth was committed to protecting and enhancing the city's natural resources that include park and green space along the Niagara River, Erie Canal and Ellicott Creek. One of her major accomplishments as Mayor, was the revitalization of the City's Erie Canal waterfront. Today, Tonawanda' Gateway Harbor is one of the busiest harbors on the Erie Canal system. In addition to the harborfront, the Tonawanda portion of the Erie Canal Heritage Trail was developed; Niawanda Park's Riverwalk was enhanced and extended inland along Two Mile Creek Road into the Town of Tonawanda. For many years, she served on NY Canal Corporation's Recreationway Commission and is the former Vice-Chair of National Parks Service Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor Commission. She currently serves on the Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, City Planning Board and chairs the City Arts Board and Historical Society Development Committee.
Ronald J. Pilozzi, Chairman, Local Government Advisory Committee
Mr. Pilozzi currently serves as the Mayor of the City of Tonawanda. He previously served as Councilman for eight years from 1994-2001 and was a member of the Management Team at General Motors Powertrain, Tonawanda Engine for over 30 years and retired from GM in 2002. Mr. Pilozzi is a past President of the Town of Tonawanda Development Corporation, a member of the Tonawanda Empire Zone Administration Board, a former loaned Executive to the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County and served on the Board of Directors and Life Member of the Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 77.
Edward T. McDonald
Mr. McDonald resides in the city of North Tonawanda and recently retired after eighteen years as Business Representative for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local # 264. Mr. McDonald is an Executive Board Trustee of Teamsters Local #264, Secretary of Teamsters Joint Council #46, a member of the International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plan and member of the Phi Epsilon Kappa Honorary Education Fraternity.
David Hahn-Baker (DHB) after graduating from Princeton in 1981 worked in Washington, D.C. for a number of national environmental organizations including, the National Clean Air Coalition as a Field Organizer, Senior Lobbyist for the League of Women Voters and as Political Director of Friends of the Earth.
In 1989 he moved to Buffalo, NY and established his own firm, Inside/Out Political Consultants, whose organizational motto is Inside Washington, D.C. skills with Outside Washington, D.C. thinking. He has worked since then as an environmental consultant focusing on environmental justice issues and the disproportionate impact of pollution on people of color and lower-income communities.
During that time his clients have been environmental advocacy groups from the National Wildlife Federation to Greenpeace who though taking a different general approach to environmental issues need help working on the concerns of non-traditional environmentalists. He has also worked extensively for the national foundation and grant-making community such as the James C. Penney Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation.
Locally his clients have included the Community Action Organization of Erie County which administers the Head Start program and he is helping organize its Environmental Justice project and the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo helping it establish an environmental grant making program.
Sean A. Edwards
Mr. Edwards resides in the Hamlet of Sanborn, New York where he is currently the Business Agent for U.A. Plumbers & Steamfitters Local No. 22 providing as liaison between members of the Local Union and Employers. Mr. Edwards served as a council member for the Town of Lewiston, participating for the Town in negotiations with New York Power Authority Relicensing Settlement Agreement.
Commissioner Emeritus Advisory Committee
Paul G. Leuchner
Mr. Leuchner is a resident of Grand Island. Prior to joining the US Army Corps of Engineers Buffalo District Office in 1973 he worked as a research assistant spending considerable time in the North Atlantic Ocean on oceanographic vessels operated by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. During his career with the Corps of Engineers that spanned more than 30 years he worked as a wetlands biologist, water resources planner and project manager. The last half of his career was spent managing the Department of the Army water resources regulatory permit program that covered three states. While employed by the United States Government Mr. Leuchner served as an environmental advisor to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works in Washington. He also spent time at the Office of the Chief of Engineers where he assisted with the drafting of the national environmental compliance plan for Corps of Engineers operational facilities. Mr. Leuchner is a member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary spending considerable time on the waters of the Niagara River. He is the Chairman of the annual Paddles Up Niagara event sponsored by the Niagara River Greenway Commission.
Richard F. Soluri
Mr. Soluri, a former executive in the insurance industry, served as Mayor of the Village of Lewiston from 1994 thru 2009. As Mayor and a lifelong resident of Niagara County, as well as through his extensive involvement in numerous community organizations, Mr. Soluri has played a leadership role in expanding tourism opportunities and economic development in the Village and along Lewiston's waterfront. He is a past Vice Chairman of the United Way of Niagara, a member of the Niagara County Chamber Commission, a member of the ArtPark & Co. Advisory Board, a founder of Service Organizations of Lewiston (S.O.L.E.) and director of the Niagara Tourism and Convention Corp.
John J. Giardino
Mr. Giardino resides in Buffalo and is past Chairman of the Buffalo Niagara Jobs Initiative and served as a Board member of the Buffalo Urban League, Buffalo Zoo, National Conference for Community and Justice, Olmstead Conservancy, and Buffalo Fiscal Stability Authority a number of other community organizations. Mr. Giardino acted as lead negotiator in the innovative Olmstead parks merger and management plan and is Chief Executive Officer of Centerstone Development. Mr. Giardino is also a special counsel in the Buffalo law firm of Phillips Lytle LLP.