Executive Director, New York State Regional Economic Development Council
Bio not available
Charles R. Gantt
Director of Planning, Planning & Project Management, University of Rochester
As Director of Planning at Campus Planning, Design & Construction Management, Chuck Gantt has had almost five years overseeing major planning project’s across the University of Rochester’s 700 acre campus. He will speak broadly to plans that have been implemented to accommodate growth and improve the quality of the educational experience at the university as needs for increased classroom, meeting, faculty office, research, residential, and clinical spaces continue to rise. Mr. Gantt will outline the multitude of factors that lay the groundwork for the SEAS Quad Project and why the Institute for Data Science played such a central programmatic role in the project’s planning. He will illustrate how the university in its latest significant projects have used the competition process as a tool for creating consensus and excitement amongst students, and faculty, and administrators.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Greater Rochester Enterprise
Matt Hurlbutt serves as President and Chief Executive Officer at Greater Rochester Enterprise (GRE) with responsibility for attracting new business to the Greater Rochester, New York region. Matt guides business development strategies, organizational resources and outreach efforts to position Rochester as a destination of choice for business investment. Matt works directly with corporate executives and national site selectors as they consider locations for investment and job creation. Before assuming this leadership role Matt served as GRE's executive vice president and chief operating officer for nine years.
Matt was directly involved in bringing Alpina Foods, EmployeeChannel, FedEx Freight, Foundation Financial Group, Intrinsiq Materials, LiveTiles, Love Beets USA, Muller Quaker Dairy, OFD Foods, Omni-ID, and Quintel Solutions to the region. He also worked with American Packaging Corporation, Brand Networks, Concentrix, Envative, IEC Electronics, Intergrow, LiDestri Foods, Maximus and Optimax as the companies expanded in the region.
In addition, Matt directs GRE’s Economic Gardening effort and collaborates with state and local partners to leverage the region’s assets in order to support innovation and economic growth of second-stage companies.
Matt was named to the “40 under 40” list by the Rochester Business Journal, an award given to recognize individuals with outstanding leadership and accomplishments for service in their profession and the community at large. He holds a Master of Public Administration degree from the State University of New York College at Brockport and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, State University of New York College at Geneseo.
He and his family live in the Town of Greece, New York. Before assuming this leadership role Matt served as GRE’s executive vice president and chief operating officer for nine years.
President, Monroe Community College
Since 2009, Anne M. Kress has served as president of Monroe Community College in Rochester, New York. She is proud to work and advocate for such an impactful, innovative, and inspiring college. Kress is particularly focused on the role MCC plays in assuring meaningful access to educational and economic opportunity in the region and MCC’s nationally recognized leadership on issues central to community college student success.
Kress currently serves as Co-Chair of the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council, as a Trustee of the New York Power Authority, and on the Upstate Regional Advisory Board of the New York Federal Reserve Bank and the SUNY Research Foundation. Locally, she serves on the boards of the Greater Rochester Chamber, Greater Rochester Enterprise, and the Memorial Art Gallery. Nationally, Kress serves on boards, commissions, and councils for organizations including the League for Innovation in the Community College, the American Association of Community Colleges, the Community College Humanities Association, and the Council on Foreign Relations.
Kress holds a doctorate in higher education administration, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in English, and a bachelor’s degree with honors in finance all from the University of Florida. In 2011, she was named a Woman of Distinction by the New York State Senate, and in 2012, she was named an outstanding alumna by the University of Florida’s Institute of Higher Education. Kress has also been honored by Rochester’s Women’s Council, the Rochester Children’s Scholarship Fund, AAUW, YWCA, and the Rochester Business Journal.
You can follow her on Twitter @MCCPresident.
John M. and Barbara Keil University Archivist and Rochester Collections Librarian, University of Rochester
Bio not available
Associate Vice President for University Facilities, University at Buffalo
As the Associate Vice President for University Facilities, Tonga leads the charge to maintain a safe, healthy and attractive campus environment at the largest public research university in the Northeast. She specifically oversees 11 million gross square feet across nearly 200 buildings on 1,200 acres of land at the University at Buffalo.
Tonga is an enthusiastic innovator and focuses on integrating the latest evidence-based customer service models, organizational change, construction processes, building maintenance and energy and sustainable design into her work to meet the complex needs of today's higher education environment.
Prior to taking on her current role, Ms. Pham was the Director of Facilities at Ryerson University where she successfully oversaw the planning, operations, and maintenance of a 4 million gross square feet urban campus. She also has over 20 years of engineering experience combined with 15 years of progressively senior management roles across multiple sectors including manufacturing, pharmaceutical, and higher education.
Ms. Pham holds a Bachelors of Chemical Engineering from McMaster University and a Masters of Business Administration from Ryerson University. A lover of “all things outdoors,” Tonga enjoys camping, canoeing, and hiking with her husband, David, and their two dogs.
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, SUNY at Geneseo
Stacey Robertson is the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of History at SUNY Geneseo, where she has worked since July 2017. She served as Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities at Central Washington University (2015-17) and held a variety of roles at Bradley University (1994-2014), including the Oglesby Professor of American Heritage and Interim Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. She is the author of four books focused on social justice movements, including Hearts Beating for Liberty: Women Abolitionists in the Old Northwest (2010). Robertson is the recipient of many teaching awards and research fellowships and has lectured at more than 150 different venues nationally and internationally. She was the co-director of the national non-profit Historians Against Slavery from 2012 to 2018. She appeared as an historical expert on the popular national television show Who Do You Think You Are? featuring actress Zooey Deschanel. She has a B.A. from Whittier College (1987) and a Ph.D. in History from the University of California, Santa Barbara (1994).
Director River Campus, Planning & Project Management, University of Rochester
Paul Spaulding, PLA, is the River Campus Director for Planning and Project Management where he leads a team of Planners and Projects Managers addressing a portfolio of projects approaching $185M across three campuses. Paul joined the University of Rochester in August 1999 as a Project Manager; rising to the position of Director in March 2011. From December 2011 to February 2017, Paul served as the Senior Operations Officer for Arts, Sciences, and Engineering. In that role, he was the liaison between the academic community and Facilities.
Prior to joining the university, Paul worked for eight years with the US General Services Administration and for over three years as a private sector landscape architect. Paul received a Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture from Cornell University and also completed studies at the University of Copenhagen.
Paul J Streeter
Director/Institutional Planning & Assessment, Cornell University
Bio not available
Chief of Staff, City of Rochester
Alex Yudelson serves as Chief of Staff for the City of Rochester. He oversees the Mayor’s office and serves as the Mayor’s senior advisor, assisting her with the day-to-day operations of City Hall. He also manages intergovernmental affairs with local, state, and federal elected officials, and provides direct oversight of the Rochester Public Library.
Alex returned home to the City of Rochester from the White House, where he served as a Policy Advisor in the office of the President’s senior advisor, Valerie Jarrett. He served as President Obama’s primary liaison to sports teams, leagues, and athletes, and helped coordinate the President’s relationship with local and state elected officials and other constituencies. Prior to joining the White House, Alex worked in the athletic department at George Washington University, his alma mater.
During college, Alex studied abroad at the University at Oxford and was chosen to be a delegate for President Obama at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. Alex graduated Phi Beta Kappa from George Washington University in 2014 with a degree in Political Science and Philosophy. He was born and raised in the Rochester area and is the grandson of Tanya Yudelson, who served as the City’s Director of Communications in the 1970s.
President, Rochester Downtown Development Corporation
Bio not available