Meet Sarah Bachwitz, the BN360 Spotlight Professional for April 2019

The Buffalo Niagara Partnership is pleased to present the 2019 BN360 Spotlight Professionals, sponsored by Alpine Films. Each year, BN360 highlights 12 up-and-coming young professionals who strive for professional growth and development, care for their community, and are passionate about the future of the Buffalo Niagara region. Meet Sarah Backwitz, the Spotlight Professional for April 2019.

Sarah Bachwitz

Receivables Finance Implementation Team Lead for Global Trade & Receivables Finance | HSBC
President & Founder | Empower Camp

Inspired by her personal transformation from a shy, soft-spoken teen to an outspoken, fierce-adventurer, Sarah discovered how to lead an empowered lifestyle. In 2016, Sarah hiked 100km across the Gobi Desert in Mongolia and realized that her biggest asset is none other than herself.

A graduate of Ohio Northern University, Sarah is the founder of HSBC’s Young Professionals Employee Group and an alumnus of Leadership Buffalo. She was recognized as a 30 Under 30 Honoree by Buffalo Business First and was recently recognized as Woman in Leadership by New York State Women Inc. Additionally, she is the proud founder of a new non-profit in Buffalo, Empower Camp, which exists to ignite the inner power of young women between the ages of 13 and 18.

First Job Out of School

Following her time at Ohio Northern University, Sarah immediately joined the HSBC team in the Graduate Development Program for Retail Banking and Wealth Management.

Greatest Professional Win

Sarah says that one of the highlights for Empower Camp was winning first place at the United Way’s Next Generation United Pitch 10 Event in February 2017.

“It is important that we have a diverse group of campers who can learn about empathy, kindness and acceptance from each other. With the first-place award funds, we were able to provide camp scholarships for half of our campers who required financial assistance. Our first camp was a resounding success as the campers said that they would recommend our program to others!”

Sarah says that her biggest “win” was “seeing the spark in our campers after they transformed and grew at Empower Camp.”

With HSBC, one of Sarah’s top moments was implementing a $600 million complex trade finance solution for one of HSBC’s top global banking clients in under three weeks. She managed a global team in a very high-stress, high-visibility environment and the team delivered the trade solution successfully and on time.

Best Piece of Professional Advice

“Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely day dreaming, but vision with action can change the world.” -Nelson Mandela

Community Corner

Sarah is an active member of the Buffalo Niagara Community and is involved with:

  • Camp Duffield – Volunteer Camp Counselor and Camp Director
  • Empower Camp – Founder and President
  • Leadership Buffalo – Class of 2014 Rising Leaders
  • Leadership Buffalo – 2017 Youth Leadership Advisor
  • Just Buffalo, Babel & Adult Writing Workshops – Participant

 

Thoughts on Living and Working in Buffalo Niagara

“I have always been extremely proud to be from Buffalo. While other cities may give us a hard time for our snowy weather, I find our city to be bursting with exciting energy as new businesses emerge and social media explodes with new, creative events every weekend of the year. I have so much fun going to events around the city and meeting new friends along the way. Buffalo is home!”

Greatest Hope for the Region

“I have always been extremely proud to be from Buffalo. While other cities may give us a hard time for our snowy weather, I find our city to be bursting with exciting energy as new businesses emerge and social media explodes with new, creative events every weekend of the year. I have so much fun going to events around the city and meeting new friends along the way. Buffalo is home!”

On Being a Spotlight Professional

“I am honored to be recognized as a Spotlight Professional and am so impressed by the accomplishments of the other honorees (and how kind they all are). I am grateful to be a part of such an impressive group.”

Sarah’s Favorites:
  1. Go to Lunch Spot – Underground Coffee House in South Buffalo
  2. Best Buffalo Hidden Gem – Just Buffalo Literary Center’s Babel Series
  3. Dream Vacation Location – My dream is to hike all 46 high peaks in the Adirondacks. Each peak has its own personality and is a distinct challenge and adventure. Thus far, we have done several long day hikes and I am so psyched to begin doing multi-day camping trips to tackle this challenge. Six down, 40 to go!
  4. Best Buffalo Activity/Hobby – The Shamrock Run
  5. Favorite “Buffalo” Food – Bison Chip Dip