In the last two years, the Talent Development field, and our work in it, has changed rapidly. Many of us are putting on our best thinking caps to provide the best Talent Development services to our customers and patrons. Organizations are asking us to think outside the box, pivot, and innovate like never before. How do we attract talent, keep and engage talent, build bench strength, shape and build inclusive, diverse workplaces and cultures in this COVID-19 Buffalo Niagara world?
About the Presenters:
David Comstock is a graduate of Erie Community College with an associate in science in emergency management. Currently he continues his studies with SUNY Empire State, where he is currently working on a bachelor’s in science in business with a concentration in human resources.
David has been with M&T Bank for 8 years where he is a senior quality assurance analyst. In addition to his primary role he is the current president of the WNY Pride resource group and a talent acquisition ambassador. David is a volunteer with the American Red Cross of Western and Central New York where he services as a committee member of the Pride and Diversity, Inclusion and Equity committees.
O. Fiona Pratt-MacDonald is a dynamic and results-oriented emerging professional with superior interpersonal communication and leadership skills. She has a stellar academic record, maintaining a 4.0 GPA for the past three years spent at University at Buffalo where she currently attends, majoring in Sociology and minoring in Psychology. This past summer, Fiona interned in the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion office at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. She was involved in onboarding the Bank's new DEI Council and building a case for the compensation of the organization's ERG groups
Fiona is applying for several study abroad programs and a Fulbright scholarship. She has lived in the Washington, DC, metropolitan area, Southern California, and Florida and currently lives in East Amherst with her family, two cats, and a dog.
Karen R. Brown (she/her/hers) is the Director of Diversity Equity and Inclusion, Buffalo Niagara Partnership. She oversees the development and implementation of programs and initiatives that promote a thriving, diverse, informed, and equitable region. She also collaborates with the Partnership team to provide unique D&I offerings such as the D&I Academy, D&I Symposium, and the D&I Executive Exchange for greater Buffalo.
Prior to joining the Partnership Karen was a Learning and Development Consultant at AAA Western and Central NY where she was instrumental in their D&I efforts. At Delaware North (Hamburg Gaming) she oversaw all training, rewards and recognition efforts and was Leader of the Quarter and Leader of the Year.
A published author Brown’s research is centered on inequality, and the experiences of women of color in academia. Karen holds a Master of Science degree from Buffalo State College, a bachelors from Medaille College and D&I certification from the University of South Florida. She is also certified in Learning Consultancy and Change Management from ATD. Karen has been married for over 25 years to a retired Buffalo firefighter and is a proud mom to a junior at Columbia-Chicago. In her spare time Karen is an avid Bills fan, and an enthusiastic theatergoer.
Peter Morris is President and Principal Consultant at P.R. Morris Consulting, LLC, a business consulting, and corporate training firm which he established in 1980.
Peter began his business career at the Xerox Corporation and the Harland Company where he enhanced and refined his training skills through their Sales and Management Training Programs and the Professional Sales Skills Programs. He then established his own consulting and training company, P.R. Morris Consulting, LLC, in 1980, concentrating in the corporate field with Leadership, Management and Sales Training as well as Strategic Planning, One-On-One Coaching.
Morris also spent more than 20 years in the weekly newspaper industry as Vice President of Sales & Corporate Development at H&K Publications, Inc., and Publisher of Metro Community News in Western New York. Peter founded, co-owned, and managed Finishline Publications, Inc., (NY Runners Journal); he co-owned and operated Fifty Buffalo St., Ltd., (a marketing and advertising agency) for twenty years prior to its sale in 2003. He is also co-founder of a new corporate training venture, CM Training and Development.
A graduate of New England College with a Bachelor of Arts degree, Peter is also the recipient of the prestigious William Troy Award from the college. He has been listed in Strathmore's Who's Who for Leadership and Achievement and recently received the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Free Community Papers of New York.
He now spends time writing his next book with anticipated publishing date in 2022.
Peter and his wife, Jeanne, live in NH.
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