Introducing Susan Campanella Roney, finalist for the 2019 ATHENA Leadership Award

The Buffalo Niagara Partnership is pleased to introduce you to the finalists for the 2019 ATHENA Awards,® which recognize contributions made by individuals to advance the status of women in the Buffalo Niagara region.

We’ll profile each finalist in the weeks leading up to the awards ceremony luncheon on Tuesday, June 4, at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center. Check back every Wednesday to meet these exceptional women and learn more about their important work in the Buffalo Niagara region.

And if you’d like to attend the ATHENA Awards® Luncheon, the region’s most prestigious event dedicated to the professional accomplishments of those who work to advance women, you can get tickets here.

Meet This Week’s ATHENA Leadership Award® Finalist

Susan Campanella Roney
Partner, Complex Commercial Disputes
Nixon Peabody LLP

Susan Campanella Roney is a partner in the law firm of Nixon Peabody LLP, where she has worked for more than 28 years and today specializes in complex commercial disputes. Susan’s practice is focused on the representation of railroads and other businesses, including the news industry and hospitals and other health care providers, in commercial, labor and employment, and personal injury litigation.

With more than 30 years of experience in representing railroads, Susan expertise in the railroad industry and has won numerous verdicts and dispositive motions for her clients. Susan was the managing partner of the Buffalo office of Nixon Peabody for fifteen years and has held other high-profile leadership positions in the firm, including serving as chair of the firm’s Professional Personnel Committee and serving on the Policy Committee. She was recognized as a “Lawyer of the Year” by The Best Lawyers in America© in its 2019 edition.

Among Susan’s volunteer and community activities, she has been involved with Families of FANA WNY, a non-profit organization established to assist US families who wish to adopt from the Foundation for the Assistance of Abandoned Children (FANA) in Bogotá, Colombia. She has also volunteered her time and talent with Roswell Park Alliance Foundation and Buffalo Prep.

First Job

In college, Susan worked as the personnel and budget administrator for the Buffalo office of the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

Career Highlights

Susan notes the pioneering the litigation practice in the new Buffalo office of Nixon Peabody (then Nixon Hargrave Devans & Doyle) as one of her many career highlights. When Susan joined the firm, she and another woman attorney were the only two litigators amongst primarily corporate, finance, and private equity attorneys. Together, the two began to build the litigation practice from the ground up into the thriving practice it is today.

Best Piece of Advice Given Regarding Her Career

“Plan your work and work your plan.” (Advice given to her by a senior partner at her first law firm.)

Advice to Give to a Woman Just Starting in the Workplace

“Define your own measure of success. Find what you truly want to do and set your own priorities instead of doing what you think others expect you to do.”

About being an ATHENA Award® Finalist

“I am honored by the nomination and selection as a finalist. To me, it is recognition of my career-long dedication to mentoring and supporting young professionals, and my contributions to the community in which we live and work.”

On Buffalo Niagara

“I enjoy the people who live here and the quality of life—this is home.”

Favorite Spot in Buffalo

“Delaware Park.”

Lightning Round: Added Insights
  • Guilty Pleasure: “Reading by the pool.”
  • My Superpower: “Multitasking.”
  • Best Describes Me: “Calm, steady, even-tempered.”
  • Most Likely To: “Travel on a whim.”
  • Best At: “Seeking solutions.”


Attend the ATHENA Awards® Luncheon

The ATHENA Awards® Luncheon is the region’s most prestigious event recognizing the professional accomplishments of exceptional individuals who are dedicated to the advancement of women. Be there when the winners are announced.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019
11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Buffalo Niagara Convention Center
153 Franklin Street | Buffalo, NY 14202

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