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Six Appointed to Serve on the People Enterprises Board of Directors

Six area leaders have been appointed to the board of directors of People Enterprises. The new board members are: Robert O’Leary, Denise Bienko, Christopher Jacobs, David Pawlik, Laura Ryan and Timothy Vaeth.

People Enterprises is a for profit corporation that was recently formed to ensure People Inc., Western New York’s leading health and human service agency, continues to be a leader and stay ahead of the curve as the system of care for individuals with developmental disabilities converts to a managed care environment.

Robert O’Leary, vice president of Parkview Health Services, LLC, has been appointed board president. He has been an active People Inc. Foundation board member for the past 10 years, currently serving as its treasurer and a member of the investment committee. In 2007- 2009, he chaired the Foundation’s Jeremy Project Campaign, a successful initiative that raised more than $100,000 in funds to build a People Inc. specialty home in North Tonawanda for individuals with intensive medical concerns. He has also chaired the People Inc. Foundation’s Drive Fore Disabilities Golf Tournament for the past 14 years, raising a record-breaking $103,000 in 2015. O’Leary is chairman of the boards of Spectrum Human Services and its Foundation. A resident of Buffalo, he also serves on the board of the Community Services Support Foundation.

Denise Bienko, vice president at People Inc., has been appointed board secretary. With more than 28 years of experience at People Inc., she is responsible for overseeing the agency’s corporate governance affairs, grants, program development, long-range planning, marketing communications and government and community relations, as well as family advisory functions. She also serves as executive director of the People Inc. Foundation. Active in the community, she serves on the boards of Leadership Buffalo (2003 graduate), Museum of disABILITY History and is a founding board member of the International Policy Governance Association. She serves on the management board of the Western New York Coalition of Pooled Trusts and as an advocate and appointed public official for the New York State Surrogate Decision-Making Panel. She is also on the Susan G. Komen Foundation’s marketing committee, is an ambassador for the Arthritis Foundation and is part of the 2015 Buffalo Niagara Partnership Executive Exchange Program. A resident of Hamburg, she has a bachelor’s degree from Houghton College and a master’s degree from St. Bonaventure University.

Chris Jacobs, Erie county clerk, is a strong advocate for expanding economic development. Prior to becoming county clerk, he was a real estate developer who focused on renovating older buildings in Buffalo’s Theater, Cobblestone and Larkin Districts. Active in the community, Jacobs serves on the boards of Buffalo Place, the Freedom Station Coalition and he is a past board member of the Catholic Academy of West Buffalo and the Olmsted Parks Conservancy. A resident of Buffalo, Jacobs has a law degree from SUNY Buffalo, a MBA from the American University in Washington, DC. and a BA from Boston College. 

David Pawlik, president of Creative Structures Services, Inc., has more than 25 years of project development and government relations experience. He previously served as vice president of pre-construction/development for Savarino Construction Corporation and as vice president for Clover Management. Prior to these roles, he had a 15-year career with the City of Buffalo, serving as commissioner of housing/community development. Pawlik is acting president of the FBI Citizens Academy Alumni Association and serves on the boards of the Community Services Support Foundation, St. Luke’s Mission of Mercy and Saving Grace Ministry. A resident of Buffalo, he earned a bachelor’s degree from Niagara University.

Laura Ryan is president of LAMA Innovation Inc., a facilitation and training firm specializing in creative problem solving and strategic planning. Ryan’s clients include Greatbatch, Hasek’s Heroes, UBMD Pediatrics, Jiffy-Tite, Ashton Potter, the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, ComEd, and PepsiCo. She is also the founder of Creativity-International, which provides creativity training for a worldwide audience including King Saud University, NIPA Korea and Tunghai University in Taiwan. She has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Boston University and an M.S. in Creativity and Innovation from the International Center for Studies in Creativity at SUNY Buffalo State. In addition, Ryan holds certificates in Six Sigma, Lean Practices and FourSight. A resident of Buffalo, Ryan proudly serves on the Foundation Board of The Summit Center and the Family Council of WCHOB.

Timothy Vaeth is owner of JTVaeth Development and has more than 23 years of real estate development experience. Prior to forming his own company, Vaeth was president at TM Montante Development where he played a lead role on the disposition and redevelopment of the former Millard Fillmore Gates Hospital. Prior to that, he served as vice president of development at Ciminelli Real Estate Corporation. Vaeth has played an integral role in numerous major development projects for high profile international companies, private institutions and government agencies. Active in the community, Vaeth serves on the boards of the Kaleida Health Foundation and Kevin Guest House. A resident of Clarence Center, he earned a bachelor’s degree from Canisius College and a master’s degree from John Hopkins University. 

People Enterprises serves as a platform for identifying and implementing innovative solutions to assist People Inc. in its primary mission to ensure our community’s most vulnerable people, individuals with developmental disabilities and special needs, and senior adults, lead independent and productive lives.

Board members will serve one year, renewable terms and will be responsible for reviewing plans and strategies, offering insights and acting as a sounding board for new business development.

People Inc. is a not-for-profit health and human services agency providing programs and services to more than 12,000 people with special needs, their families and seniors throughout Western New York. Since 1970, People Inc. has assisted individuals to achieve greater degrees of independence and productivity.

Western New York 1219 North Forest Road | P.O. Box 9033 | Williamsville, New York 14231 | Phone: 716.817.7400 | Toll Free NY 1.888.7PEOPLE | Fax: 716.634.3889

Rochester 1860 Buffalo Road | Rochester, NY 14624 | Phone 585.441.9300 | Fax 585.441.9398

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