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AMHERST, NY –You may have noticed more construction cranes in the air, more places to live and shop, new hospitals, new hotels, new restaurants and the list goes on and on.
That is the Buffalo renaissance.
It’s real and it’s what we are celebrating at The Event this year.
“Each of our award winners has contributed to the growth and quality of life in our community, and we are proud to take this opportunity to honor their success and #LetItShine, says Amherst Chamber of Commerce President/CEO A.J. Baynes.
The Chamber’s annual Celebration of Business Excellence will be held on Monday, October 21, 2019. The Event will be held from 5:30 p.m.-8:00 p.m. at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens.
Our Business of the Year has a long legacy of bringing light to many of the major projects in the Buffalo region. Frey Electric Construction Company has been around since 1945, operated by the third generation of the Frey family. President/CEO Kent Frey started cleaning the warehouse as a young boy and spent several years in the field before taking over the reins from his father Harry who took over for his grandfather, Paul, founder of the business. Frey Electric has steadily grown and is stronger than ever today working on enterprises such as the Northland Workforce Training Center and the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. It is currently on the job site of the ECMC state-of-the-art Trauma Center/ER expansion and the Buffalo Niagara International Airport improvement project.
Because of the tremendous improvements at ECMC, we have chosen the hospital for our Commitment to Excellence award. Its Trauma and ER Capital Campaign is building the only Level 1 facility in Western New York to better serve the growing demand of today and tomorrow. This project and ECMC’s many other services are offering our community a healthier future.
Nothing has been a more vivid representation of the Buffalo renaissance than the project spearheaded by our awardees for Community Revitalization. The Albright-Knox Art Gallery and Buffalo Councilman Joel Feroleto teamed up to bring us the beautiful Murals on Hertel. Feroleto got the idea to bring the outdoor murals to Buffalo after seeing them on a trip to Miami. These vibrant works of public art are not only enriching our neighborhoods, but boosting tourism in Buffalo.
Much of our success hinges on having accessible, clean energy sources and this year’s Woman of Distinction has spent her career enhancing this sector of our community. Donna DeCarolis, President of National Fuel Gas Distribution Corporation has climbed the corporate ladder through the years thanks to her hard work on improving access, quality and storage of natural gas, a vital resource in the growth of our region. 
Buffalo’s restaurant scene has always been one of our best assets and this year, our honorees for the Hospitality award are behind several longtime favorites. Henry Gorino and Chuck Mauro of Local Boys Restaurant Group are the founders of Siena, 800 Maple, Rocco’s and newcomer JT’s. They have been in the restaurant business for more than 30 years and have clearly mastered the art of good food and great service!
A familiar name to the Chamber and the community is being recognized with our Stewardship award.  West Herr Automotive Group is embedded in the local car industry, but even more importantly, the company and its CEO Scott Bieler are community-first focused, contributing to so many causes including its most prominent, the Scott Bieler Clinical Sciences Center at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center.
The Chamber prides itself in helping to promote the next generation of leadership, and this year we will also be utilizing The Event to highlight our Emerging Business Leaders Class of 2019, as the thirty-six young professionals wrap up a year of grooming and experiences that will help take them forward in their careers.
We have some great stories to tell, so we encourage everyone to join us for The Event. There will also be cocktails, food stations and plenty of networking. For more information and to register for tickets, go to

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