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Commission Board Members

Jump to: Staff | Consultants |  In Memory

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George Alexander

Chair

George is an Assistant Professor for Erie County Community College's Criminal Justice Program and is highly competent in all aspects of the criminal justice system. Experience includes knowledge in both probation and parole principles and practices, community and institutional corrections, reentry and rehabilitation of offenders, court policies and practices and the judicial decision making process. Well versed in adult and juvenile corrections and related issues.

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Lillie Wiley-Upshaw

Treasurer 

The proud mom to three teenagers, Lillie is the current Chair  and Anchor Representative of the Buffalo Niagara Freedom Station Coalition, the owners of the 175 year old Michigan Street Baptist Church. Under Lillie's leadership, the Church has been listed on the Network to Freedom and received substantial funding to undergo much needed restoration work. 

Before becoming involved in nonprofits, Lillie served  as the Vice Dean for Admissions at UB’s Law School for over 16 years and as the Vice Dean for Student Services. 

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Sharon Holley

Board Member

Sharon is the current Anchor Representative and President of the Michigan Street Preservation Corp which owns the Nash House Museum. She is responsible for interpreting and preserving the historical integrity of this Historic Landmark for the public, community and visitors. 

 

Sharon is a storyteller and retired Librarian who hails from High Springs, FL.  For 34 years she was employed by the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library. With her husband, Kenneth they own Zawadi Books at 1382 Jefferson Ave. They are parents of three daughters and six grandchildren.

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Sheila Brown

Board Member

Sheila Brown is the CEO of Vision Multi-Media and owner of WUFO 1080 AM radio.  She started as an entry-level saleswoman at WUFO in 1986, moving to sales manager and then to owner of Buffalo’s oldest black-owned radio station, becoming the first African-American female radio owner in Buffalo, NY. 

Sheila started the WUFO Black Radio History Collective in 2018 and serves as the Anchor Representative for that organization. 

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Michael Johnson

Board Member

Bio coming soon!

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Dr. Cynthia Conides

Secretary 

Cynthia A. Conides is Associate Professor of History and Director of Museum Studies at SUNY Buffalo State College. She received her Ph.D. from Columbia University in 2001., with specializations in the indigenous cultures of North, Central and South America, and sub-Saharan Africa.  

 

From 2006 2010, Dr. Conides served as executive director for the Buffalo History Museum through a partnership with the college. Her expertise in museum administration, curation, education, visitor experience and cultural tourism serves numerous local, national, and international cultural institutions.   

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Judge James McLeod

Vice Chair

Judge McLeod, the great nephew of educator Mary McLeod Bethune,  began his legal career by becoming the second African American attorney in Buffalo history to be hired as an associate attorney with a major law firm. Having worked as a defense attorney involved in major cases, he was selected by Supreme Court Justice Samuel L. Green to become the first African American -outside of New York City -to serve as a Confidential Law Clerk.

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Dr. Lillian S. Williams

Education Committee Chair

Lillian S. Williams, PhD, is Associate Professor and former chair of the Department of African American Studies. Dr. Williams received the doctorate degree from the University at Buffalo. A specialist in United States social and urban history, Dr.  Williams’ research is in the areas of institutions, ethnicity, biography and women’s history. Her research includes the YMCA and the National Urban League; and Mary Burnett Talbert, an early twentieth-century reformer.

She is the author of Strangers in the Land of Paradise:  The Creation of an African American Community, Buffalo, New York, 1900-1940.

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Anthony Johnson

Board Member

Anthony Johnson is an experienced executive with a strong track record of leadership across the healthcare sector. Anthony is the CEO Kodikaz Therapeutic Solutions, Inc., a gene therapy firm.  He is the former President/CEO of Empire Genomics, a pre-eminent oncology genomic molecular diagnostic company. Having lived and worked in Europe, South America and the USA Mr. Johnson brings an international perspective and diversity of domestic and international experiences to his work.

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Kevin D. Robinson

Board Member

Kevin D. Robinson proudly serves as an Assistant United States Attorney with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of New York (June 2002 to present). Mr. Robinson is currently the Chief of the office’s Asset Recovery Division. 

Mr. Robinson is a graduate of the Buffalo Public School system and received a B.S. in Business Administration and a Juris Doctorate degree from the State University of New York at Buffalo.   He is active in the community and serves on the Board of Directors for the Buffalo AKG Art Museum, Horizon Health Services, The Colored Musicians Club of Buffalo, New York, and the Nicholas Patterson Perpetual Fund.  Mr. Robinson is a past president of the Minority Bar Association of Western New York, and the recipient of its Legal Service Award in 2003. Mr. Robinson also received the Business First Forty Under Forty Award in 1998, USDA Recognition award in 2011, and the Bar Association of Erie County Charles H. Dougherty Civility Award in 2019.  Mr. Robinson is a 2003 graduate of Leadership Buffalo.  

Staff

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Executive Director

Terry Alford, MOAL

Terry is the Executive Director of the Michigan Street African American Heritage Corridor Commission. Under Alford’s leadership, the Commission has seen immeasurable growth. With his guidance, the Corridor has launched the process to formulate a Strategic Action Plan, developed new partnerships with community stakeholders, increased awareness on Corridor issues, and united the anchors in ways that have never been accomplished. 


Prior to his current role, Alford worked at Comprehensive Cancer Center’s  Office of Cancer Health Disparities Research as its Community Relations Coordinator. He is also active in several community groups including MANUP, Friends of the Columbia, and Preservation Buffalo Niagara. Alford has a Bachelors in Sociology from SUNY Buffalo State College and a MAOL from Medaille College. 

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Executive Assistant

Tracey Brown

Tracey Brown is a lifelong resident of Buffalo, NY. She graduated from Bennet HS, class of 1986 and received a degree in Business Management from Bryant & Stratton Business Institute. She has worked as an administrative assistant and customer care representative for over 20 years in the WNY area. 


Tracey is a proud mother of 2, grandmother of 2 as well as a cat mom to a very loquacious black cat. In her spare time, she loves to read, learn new things, and cook. 

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Curator of Exhibits and Interpretive Programming

Audrey Clark, MA

Audrey is an arts and culture advocate who officially joined the Corridor as a staff member in 2020, but had been involved with the Michigan Street Baptist Church through graduate studies since 2018. She currently serves as Curator and oversees the planning and execution of programs and events in collaboration with the Anchors, while also curating collections and exhibitions for the organization.

In addition to working at the Corridor, she is involved with Gardens Buffalo Niagara where she actively promotes beauty throughout the city by contributing to events like Garden Walk Buffalo and East Side Garden Walk. Prior to joining the Corridor, she worked for Niagara County Community College as their Art Gallery Coordinator. She holds a master’s degree in museum studies from SUNY Buffalo State College.

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Office Assistant & Gift Shop Attendant 

Jackie Brown

Jackie is a Buffalo native and graduate of Buffalo Academy for Visual and Performing Arts. Currently a sophomore at Buffalo State University in the Honors Program for Computer Science with a minor in Jazz, Jackie is also a skilled musician and graphic artist. She is in the heavy metal band Monomanics and has a YouTube channel featuring her talents.
 
Beyond her academic pursuits and artistic endeavors, Jackie is deeply committed to community service, volunteering extensively with organizations like Community Access Services and the Pride Center of WNY, where she spoke at the 2023 Trans Youth Conference. Jackie began volunteering at the weekly farmers market in the Corridor and other programs in 2023. She has played key roles in setting up of the new gift shop in the Corridor and has used her knowledge of computers to assist with tech needs. Jackie is excited to work not only the Corridor, but with all the partnered Anchors.

Consultants

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Grant Writing Consultant

Buffalo Moose Group

Consultants

In Memory 

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George K. Arthur

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Bishop William Henderson

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