ESD and the Economic Development Group Announce the Appointment of the President & CEO of the WNY Workforce Training Center

Stephen Tucker chosen to lead the innovative center in the Northland Corridor

August 25, 2017

See photo here.

Empire State Development (ESD) and the Economic Development Group (EDG), Inc., the operator of the Western New York Workforce Training Center (WTC) announced today that Stephen Tucker has been appointed the WTC President & CEO. 

Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, “After an extensive national search to find the most qualified candidate, Stephen Tucker stood out  as  a leader with a strong record of workforce training accomplishments and is a great fit to become the President & CEO of the WNY WTC. Buffalo is fortunate to have someone with Stephen’s skill set managing such a critically important initiative.”

Governor Cuomo unveiled plans for the Western New York WTC, a new hub that will focus primarily on training for careers in the advanced manufacturing and energy sectors in July 2015. The WTC will house administrative, classroom and shop facilities designed to train and turn out highly-skilled members of the local workforce to meet the requirements of the 21st century electric utility and advanced manufacturing industries. It will also serve some of the most underrepresented populations in the region’s workforce. It is being developed as an adaptive reuse of roughly 100,000 square feet of space in the former Clearing Niagara factory at 683 Northland Avenue on Buffalo’s East Side. The center will anchor a 35 acre business park as part of the Northland Avenue Redevelopment Area (a brownfield reclamation project) and will train 350 people each year. Rehabilitation and construction of the WTC began last month and it’s set to open by the Fall of 2018.  The project is a partnership between ESD, the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (BUDC), the City of Buffalo and the New York Power Authority (NYPA) and is being funded by the Governor’s Buffalo Billion revitalization initiative.

Stephen was recruited to his new position in Buffalo through Performance Managing Partners.

Thomas Lynch, Treasurer of the Economic Development Group said, “The Economic Development Group partners are extremely pleased to have the opportunity to bring Stephen to Buffalo to lead the Workforce Training Center at Northland.  Stephen’s experience with the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati along with Partners for a Competitive Workforce make him an ideal candidate to fill this critical role and we look forward to his contributions to the Center as well as to the WNY community.”

Stephen Tucker, President & CEO of the WNY Workforce Training Center said, "I am both humbled and excited to be selected as the inaugural President & CEO of the Western New York Workforce Training Center. I look forward to collaborating with business and industry, economic development, education and workforce stakeholders to ensure Western New York has the highest caliber workforce which is critical to our region's future success."

“The addition of Stephen Tucker as the President and CEO of the Western New York Workforce Training Center is a great step forward for this important initiative,” said Gil C. Quiniones, NYPA President and CEO. “New York State needs a motivated and skilled utility and clean energy workforce to secure its energy future and this center is an essential component of Governor Cuomo’s long-term energy vision for the state.”      

Born and raised in Ohio, Stephen served four years in the Unites States Air Force as an Electronic Technician before returning to Cincinnati and attending college through the GI Bill. Stephen has served as the Assistant Executive Director at the Partners for a Competitive Workforce in Cincinnati, Ohio. Previous to that position, Stephen served as Vice President for Workforce Development at Urban League of Greater Cincinnati. His academic achievements include: an A.S., in Business Administration from University of Cincinnati, a B.S., in Criminal Justice from Wilberforce University and an M.B.A. from Indiana Wesleyan University. 

About Empire State Development
Empire State Development is New York’s chief economic development agency (www.esd.ny.gov). The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I Love NY,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, please visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov and www.esd.ny.gov.

About The Economic Development Group
The Economic Development Group, Inc. (EDG), a NYS 501c3 nonprofit entity, with lead partners - Catholic Charities of Buffalo, Inc., (CCB) Goodwill Industries of Western New York, Inc. (Goodwill), Buffalo Urban League and Buffalo Niagara Manufacturing Alliance (BNMA) was named the Operator for the WNY Workforce Training Center in December, 2016.  EDG is grounded in the partners’ expertise in: workforce training; manufacturing industry knowledge; experience working with manufacturers and apprenticeship programs, including energy-related jobs; experience recruiting, screening and placing candidates into training, and tracking their progress to advance their education and to securing gainful employment. These entities have over a hundred years combined experience with workforce development.