By Michelle Cioci Adams  |  Buffalo Business First  |  Jan 6, 2021, 6:00am EST Updated Jan 6, 2021, 9:29am EST

Introducing the 2021 IDEA (Inclusion Diversity Equity Awareness) Award winners

An educator who reshaped curriculum in Buffalo Public Schools to include the history and culture of people of color. A volunteer who has been an advocate for people with disabilities for more than 25 years. A nonprofit that uses sports and mentorship to empower underserved youth. A Native American-owned commercial art gallery.

They are just some of the honorees named for the second annual IDEA (Inclusion Diversity Equity Awareness) Awards presented by Buffalo Business First, along with platinum sponsors M&T Bank and Phillips Lytle LLP.

Nineteen people and seven organizations were chosen from 60 nominations for championing diversity and inclusion. They will be honored at a virtual event March 4.

While diversity represent demographic differences such as race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and disability, inclusion means a feeling of belonging and how well employees are valued, respected, accepted and encouraged to participate in an organization.

“Business First is pleased to continue to celebrate the people and organizations that promote diversity and inclusion in Western New York,” said John Tebeau, president and publisher of Business First. “As you learn more about the honorees, we know you will agree that their stories are inspiring.”

The following people are being honored:

  • Shareefa Albanna, Owner/CEO, Arabica Enterprises LLC
  • Herbert Bellamy Jr., President, Buffalo Black Achievers
  • Annalisa Condon, Claims File Specialist, Nova Healthcare Administrators
  • Barb DeLong, Co-Chair, Developmental Disability Alliance of Western New York
  • Shatorah Donovan, Chief Diversity Officer, City of Buffalo
  • Kristy Farrell, Group Vice President, Diversity and Inclusion Director, M&T Bank
  • Geraldine Ford, Manager for Office of Contract and Supplier Diversity and Western New York Regional Council, Empire State Development
  • Tiffany Hamilton, Chief Diversity Officer, Daemen College
  • Darnell Haywood, Community Office Assistant Manager, BankOnBuffalo
  • Gwen Howard, Vice President, Foit-Albert Associates Architecture, Engineering and Surveying P.C.
  • Shelia Hunt, Chief Managed Care Officer, OLV Human Services
  • Beth Jermain, Support Option Administrator, The Resource Center
  • Anyango Kamina, iSEED Scientific Workforce Specialist, Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
  • Marlon Kerner, Director of Player Engagement, Buffalo Bills
  • Anastasia McCarthy, Attorney, Hurwitz & Fine P.C.
  • Fatima Morrell, Associate Superintendent for Culturally and Linguistic Response Initiatives, Buffalo Public Schools
  • Jan Peters, Chief Human Resources Officer, Trocaire College
  • Jessica Smith, Residence Coordinator, The Resource Center
  • Brianna Wilson, Assistant Vice President, Employee Experience Business Partner, Evans Bank

The following organizations are being honored:

  • Algonquin Sports for Kids
  • Ernst & Young LLP
  • Evergreen Health
  • K Art Gallery
  • Linde
  • Phillips Lytle LLP
  • SUNY Buffalo State

Ticket information can be found at the Buffalo Business First websiteopens in a new window.