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Erie County District Attorney's Office presents virtual speaker series to Buffalo Public School students

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Tue, Jul 7th 2020 10:50 am

Government & community leaders provide words of encouragement as students end nontraditional, distance learning school year

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announced that, in lieu of an in-person community conversation, his office created a virtual speaker series that was distributed Monday to Buffalo Public School students. The video, “Buffalo Strong: Inspirational Moments for Our Youth,” features more than a dozen government leaders, community activists and artists from the Buffalo area offering words of encouragement to students who finished the school year at home due to the pandemic.

Featured speakers in “Buffalo Strong: Inspirational Moments for Our Youth” include:

  • Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn
  • Hon. Craig D. Hannah, chief judge for Buffalo City Court
  • New York State Sen. Tim M. Kennedy
  • Tommy McClam, senior director of Boys and Men of Color for Say YES Buffalo
  • Dr. LaVonne Ansari, medical director for Community Health Center of Buffalo
  • Ken Colon, program coordinator for Buffalo Urban League
  • Dina Thompson, executive director of Erie County Restorative Justice Coalition
  • Sandra Green, community activist and member of PEACE Inc.
  • Felicia Beard, senior director of racial equity initiatives at CFGB
  • Thomas Diina, superintendent of the Erie County Holding Center
  • DJ Miguel, on-air personality for WKSE “KISS” 98.5-FM
  • Leroi Johnson, local attorney, activist and artist
  • Joann Falletta, music director for the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Adriana “ADRI.V” Viverette, On-air personality for WBLK “Power” 93.7-FM and 99.1-FM “The Mix”

Last year, the Erie County DA’s Office, in collaboration with the Buffalo Police Department, Buffalo Public Schools and Say Yes Buffalo, hosted the first “Community Conversation Regarding Gun Violence” at Bennett Community School campus. The program was an open dialogue about the impact and long-lasting consequences that gun violence and gang activity has on youth and their future. The program aimed to encourage students to continue with their academic pursuits and other ambitions in an effort to deter them from a criminal lifestyle.

The Erie County DA’s Office plans to continue partnering with Buffalo Public Schools on panel discussion programs as part of Flynn’s community outreach mission. It stated, “Thank you to all of the speaker series participants as well as the Buffalo Public School District for their continued collaboration on these projects.”

The video can be viewed below or by visiting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3UdLJ2thryU

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