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Stephen Grimm, Director of Marketing

The Buffalo Niagara Partnership announces first 5 participants in their Minority-Owned Business Initiative

BUFFALO, N.Y. — The Buffalo Niagara Partnership (BNP) has a long-standing commitment to promote a diverse and inclusive business climate in the WNY region. To further this commitment, BNP has joined forces with Bank of America and National Grid to create an underwriting fund to sponsor BNP memberships as part of their new Minority-Owned Business Initiative.  

 “We are very excited to help underwrite BNP’s Minority Business Initiative,” said Ted Janicki, President, Bank of America Buffalo. “Bank of America has long focused on supporting the needs of small business owners and entrepreneurs by working with community partners.  Our goal is to address systemic barriers where they exist, drive more opportunity and sustain progress.” 

 This initiative will help break through the barriers that have historically challenged minority business ownership and create a pathway to board membership for participants. By giving minority-owned businesses greater access to BNP’s resources, the program’s underwriters aim to help multiply the participant’s success.   

 “At National Grid, our goal is to encourage and help develop minority-owned business (MOBs) partners to build a rich and diverse supply chain. We believe that this approach is critical to the well-being of the communities we serve, and is reflective of our values, which emphasize inspiration and inclusivity, which give us a competitive advantage.” said Ken Kujawa, Regional Director at National Grid. “We see BNP’s Minority-Owned Business Initiative as a perfect fit with our values, and a pathway to help MOBs in WNY.” 

 To launch the pilot phase of the initiative, five local applicants were chosen to participate. Participants will: 

  • Receive a two-year sponsored membership in the BNP 
  • Leverage resources and content from the Bank of America financial training curriculum, Better Money Habits 
  • Acquire a seat at the BNP’s Executive Exchange. This is a unique peer-to-peer professional leadership development opportunity to meet, share experiences and resolve business challenges with other senior-level managers. 
  • Attend an array of networking and educational events. This is an excellent way to immediately engage these minority-owned businesses with other senior leaders across many different sectors. 

 The following minority-owned businesses have been chosen to participate in the pilot program.  

    • The self-professed “Headshot King”, Yves Richard Blanc is the creative force behind Blanc Photographie. Blanc Photographie can collaborate, script, and conduct your shoot and their entire team is available for travel to your location. 
    • Strickly Business Safety Solutions specializes in Health and Safety Education and Training Consulting. Helping everyone to Be Safe, Be Ready!”    
    • Right Fit Recruiting, LLC is a national recruiting firm that sources the right candidate using various strategies. They maintain unique recruiting standards that are reliable, trustworthy, time-sensitive, transparent, and conducted with a personal touch. 
    • Kiper Moving & Logistics provides superior service and transparent processes to their customers with a variety of moving and transportation options and commodities to meet their individual and company’s needs. 
    • Dyno Group, Inc. is a commercial construction company that focuses on successfully executed institutional and commercial projects.  

 Participants will be introduced in a bi-monthly blog series on starting in February 2022. 

 “The initiative expands opportunities for the region’s minority-owned businesses by taking away the financial barrier to membership, giving them access to BNP’s networking opportunities, programs, services, and events.” explains Dottie Gallagher, President & CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership. “We’ve really thought about what barriers exist and what we can include in this initiative to eliminate those hurdles.” 

 BNP hopes to build upon this year’s pilot phase and support more minority-owned businesses in the future.  

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The Buffalo Niagara Partnership is the area’s regional chamber of commerce and privately funded economic development organization. BNP members employ more than a quarter of a million people in the Buffalo Niagara region. By mobilizing members and strategic partners around common goals, the BNP grows private investment and jobs in Buffalo Niagara through advocacy, business development, and convening. Learn more at