December 4, 2021

ANNOUCEMENT - With an abundance of caution, the ATD Buffalo Niagara Hybrid Conference, scheduled for December 9th, 2021 has been changed from a HYBRID conference to a FULLY Virtual Conference.

"After much consideration, discussion, and research, the Conference Planning Team, in conjunction with the ATD Board of Directors, has made the difficult decision to pivot our Hybrid Conference from a hybrid format to a fully virtual format. Although we planned for this eventuality, it did not make the decision any easier. Using CDC and Health Department guidelines and data, we made a decision to keep everyone as safe as possible, while ensuring inclusion of all parties."

Individuals who were registered to attend the in-person track will pivot automatically to the Virtual Conference track. Please refer to the In-Person Cancellation due to Covid policy for information on how to obtain a partial refund.

Your health and safety are very important to us. We appreciate your understanding and support.  

Letter from the ATD Buffalo Niagara President, O. Deborah Pratt

August 11, 2021

Dear ATD Buffalo Niagara Members: 

Since the start of the Covid-19 global pandemic, ATD Buffalo Niagara has followed the recommendations regarding social gatherings from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), New York State, and Erie and Niagara Counties. In light of the uptick of Covid-19 cases due to the Delta Variant, and the recent substantial spread status within Erie County, ATD Buffalo Niagara will adhere to the recently adjusted CDC guidance and adjust the Chapter’s in-person events to follow CDC guidance. We ask that ATD Buffalo Niagara members and attendees adhere to CDC guidance when attending in-person ATD Buffalo Niagara events. 

CDC Guidance: Fully Vaccinated People

CDC General Guidance 

As of today, summer and early fall ATD Buffalo Niagara in-person events will be held in outdoor venues and/or held in indoor venues with outdoor patio-type options. When indoors, all ATD event attendees, regardless of vaccination status, should wear masks. When outdoors, we ask that you consider your vaccination status and your family and community health status before taking off your mask. While Erie County, NY remains in substantial spread status, if you are currently unvaccinated, or have not achieved full vaccination status, we request that you plan on attending ATD Buffalo Niagara virtual events starting this September. 

ATD Buffalo Niagara is the region’s largest talent development association. We are not a medical or public health organization. If members have questions about their health status and/or CDC guidance, they should consult with their doctors and local public health officials. 

Please feel free to contact us with all other questions about ATD Buffalo Niagara events. Thank you.

Sincerely yours,

Deborah Pratt, President

CC: ATD Buffalo Niagara Board Members 

Letter from the ATD Buffalo Niagara President, O. Deborah Pratt

As I step into the role of President in the upcoming weeks, I find myself reflecting upon all that was accomplished by the 2020-21 Board Members. From the start of the pandemic, which coincided almost seamlessly with my ascendency to ATD Buffalo executive leadership, I held fast to words from the early civil rights leader and author, James Baldwin: “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it faced.” As the leading Talent Development professional association in the region, the Buffalo Niagara Chapter faced historic tumult, and rapidly changed our in-person membership programming to a virtual format without missing a step. We remained optimistic during the lockdown and launched a new peer mentoring program in May 2021 and started planning for our first hybrid regional conference in December 2021. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the outgoing and returning ATD Buffalo Niagara Board members for your extraordinary fortitude and creativity navigating unpredictable events over the last twelve months:

Usha Sahadeo, Kim Stahl, Sarah Collins, Kelly Glosser, Katie Marchese, Diane Roesch,
Stan Skrabut, Kim Welborn, and Yang Zhao

It is with resilience, wisdom, and hope for the future that the new Board starts the 2021-22 year. Allow me to introduce our talented new leaders:

Shantey Brown, President-Elect

Christa Meer, Vice President of Chapter Services

Joal Pappas, Vice President of Membership

Nick Koziol, Vice President of Sponsorships


Kelly Glosser, Vice President of Communications

Kim Welborn, Vice President of Marketing

Katie Marchese, Vice President of Programming

Yang Zhao, Vice President of Finance

Kim Stahl, Past President

With the new and returning Board Members, we will envision solutions to the question: Where do we go from here from here? Collectively, we will create and implement a strategy that will power our membership and sustain important membership benefits that include monthly professional events, a peer mentoring program, and an annual regional Buffalo Niagara conference.

We are fortunate to have so many inspiring talent development professionals and leaders within the Buffalo Niagara area, and I would like to invite you to contribute to this year’s visioning and help our membership connect to the resources that move your organizations forward. Please feel free to send me your thoughts and ideas at or join your fellow Buffalo Niagara professionals at a monthly Coffee Connections to share your thought leadership.

Sincerely yours,

Deborah Pratt, President

ATD Buffalo Niagara


ATD Buffalo Niagara | Chapter Code (CHip) 2043

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ATD Buffalo | 716.648.0972 | PO Box 888 | Hamburg, New York 14075-0888

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