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Developing a leader starts with recognition and ends with action

Leaders are all around us, from the hero on the nightly news to the next great CEO to the celebrity coming to town. These people share a set of common values that make them leaders in our eyes. Leaders can be identified, but how can they be developed

Developing a leader starts with recognition and ends with action. Give a leader you’ve identified in your company—or yourself—dedicated time for learning and growing, the opportunity to have diverse experiences, and the chance to talk with the right coach. The Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s Leader Exchange and Executive Exchange programs are two ways in which the Partnership helps regional employers grow leaders.

Meet the experts of Leader Exchange and Executive Exchange who are helping to shape and grow Buffalo Niagara’s leaders:

Mike Cardus: From coaching and counseling to facilitating and conducting group development sessions, Mike does it all. He is an expert on leadership, organizational development, and team building. Mike’s specialty is in helping individuals and teams work through tough challenges in a systemic way to achieve pragmatic solutions. Mike is a long-time facilitator of the Executive Exchange Program and is the Owner of Organization Development by Mike Cardus.

Anne Moretti: With more than 20 years of senior management and consulting experience, Anne has established herself as an expert in organization and leadership development. She has earned nationally recognized certifications and has experience in Hungary, Russia, Bosnia, and in post-war Sarajevo. Anne is an Executive Exchange facilitator and President of Moretti Consulting, LLC.

Jessica Schimert: Jessica focuses on enhancing employee’s emotional intelligence and “people” skills by leading interactive workshops, serving as a consultant for Performance Management Partners, teaching with Canisius College, and training and moderating local professional development groups and organizations. Jessica has been a long-time facilitator of the Exchange programs and focuses primarily on Executive Exchange.

Pamela Szalay: Specializing in Creative Problem Solving and Innovative Culture, Pamela has spent her career working with international manufacturing companies, universities, not-for-profit organizations and small, local firms. She has contributed to national blogs and is certified to deliver FourSight: The Breakthrough Thinking Profile. Pamela is a Leader Exchange facilitator and owner of Imagine &.

Sesha Yalamanchili: Sesha’s passion lies in team development. With an extensive background in sales, marketing, operations, and innovation, Sesha has an inherent ability to comprehend the many challenges organizations face and works to empower individuals and teams to immediate impacts and long-term results. Sesha is a Leader Exchange facilitator and owner of On the Mark Consulting, LLC.

Recognize leadership potential, whether that be in yourself, a friend or colleague, then take action. Utilize programs and coaches that fit your goals, objectives, and learning style. The path to professional and leadership development is as easy as understanding and utilizing the expertise and resources our region has to offer.

Visit the Partnership’s website to learn more about Executive Exchange and Leader Exchange and apply to join. Hurry… group meetings begin again in September. If you have questions, feel free to contact Rachael Herrmann, program manager, at (716) 541-1766 or via email at

Lead image – photo by rob walsh

Written by BN360


BN360 is the region’s premier young professionals program. Through a variety of programs and events, BN360 focuses on the tenets of: connect, develop, and empower—creating an inclusive and collaborative network of resources that can empower talented individuals to achieve their goals for professional growth and success. BN360 is a program of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.

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