Kennedy Announces Howard Zemsky Confirmed as NFTA Chairman

May 15, 2012 Updated May 15, 2012 at 4:53 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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Kennedy Announces Howard Zemsky Confirmed as NFTA Chairman

May 15, 2012 Updated May 15, 2012 at 4:53 PM EDT

Albany, N.Y. (WKBW release) -- Senator Timothy M. Kennedy, a member of the Senate Transportation Committee, announced the Senate has confirmed the appointment of Howard Zemsky to serve as chairman of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority. Zemsky, who also works as co-chair of the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council, becomes chairman of the NFTA after serving on its board of commissioners since 2008.

According to a news release:

Zemsky has become a prominent leader in local economic development and cultural support initiatives following his successful redevelopment of the Larkin Soap Co. building – which has led to the revival of the entire surrounding neighborhood, now known as “Larkinville”. 
 
Senator Kennedy released the following statement in response to Zemsky’s confirmation.
 
“I think the Buffalo News was right, when they recently referred to Howard Zemsky as Western New York’s “go-to guy” when it comes to regional economic growth initiatives.
 
“Howard Zemsky’s leadership and vision have been a driving force in our efforts to spark an economic resurgence in Buffalo and Western New York. Our region will benefit from Howard’s hard work, as the co-chairman of the WNY Regional Economic Development Council, as we work to turn the state’s multi-year, billion-dollar investment in Buffalo into real jobs for hardworking Western New Yorkers. 
 
“Putting Howard Zemsky at the helm of the NFTA is good news for Western New York, and it’s a great nomination by Governor Cuomo. The NFTA has experienced some challenges, especially in the last few years. The agency needs some work, and Howard will roll up his sleeves and get the job done.
 
“The long-term success of the NFTA is critical to our region’s economic future. A strong focus on the agency’s core mission of public transportation – which Howard Zemsky is committed to delivering – will ensure Western New Yorkers have access to the affordable and accessible transportation services we need and deserve. 
 
“His experience, his dedication to our community and his vision for a stronger Western New York – that’s what makes Howard Zemsky the right person for this job. I congratulate Mr. Zemsky on his appointment, and I commend Governor Cuomo for a great nomination.” 

New York Congressman Brian Higgins also issued a statement on Zemsky's appointment. It reads:

“Howard Zemsky is a true Buffalo believer.  His record demonstrates a keen ability to foresee the possibilities and break through barriers to get things done. 
 
“Howard is an economic development leader with roots that remain strongly connected to the neighborhood.  The Larkin District exemplifies his inspired vision and deep understanding and inclusion of the community’s needs. 
 
“The appointment of Howard as Chair of the NFTA is the right choice at the right time as we work to free the NFTA from the waterfront business and help the agency concentrate on its core mission.”