Economic Development Department Staff

Michael A. Casale, Commissioner

Phone: (716) 278-8750
Email: [email protected] 

Mike oversees the Empower Niagara, Business & Community Enhancement, and Business Growth & Retention, and Niagara County Economic Development Alliance programs.  As Commissioner, he is responsible for the management and day-to-day operations of the Department.


Cathie L. Synor, Confidential Assistant to the
Commissioner of Economic Development

Phone: (716) 278-8750
Email: [email protected]

Cathie is responsible for coordinating the Niagara County Free Business Workshops, Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, William G. Mayne Business & Community Enhancement Program and Agribusiness Outreach Forum.  She also provides administrative support for the Niagara County Economic Development Committee, Empower Niagara and Niagara Falls International Airport Stakeholders Group.


 
Andrea L. Klyczek, Deputy Commissioner

Phone: (716) 278-8761
Email: [email protected]

Andrea is responsible for devising long term business attraction, site adaptation, and economic development strategies.


Amy E. Fisk, AICP, Brownfield Program Manager

Phone: (716) 278-8754
Email: [email protected]

Amy is responsible for managing Niagara County's brownfield programs, the Niagara County Brownfield Development Corporation, and the Niagara County Planning Board.  In addition to grant and project management, she also oversees solar development.


Benjamin J. Bidell, AICP, GISP, Senior Planner

Phone: (716) 278-8756
Email: [email protected]

Ben is responsible for regional planning, providing technical assistance on land use and development regulations, site selection assistance, grant and project management, GIS mapping, data analysis, web development, and social media.


Jeffery P. Degnan, Graphic Artist

Phone: (716) 278-8755
Email: [email protected]

Jeff provides a variety of graphic design services focusing on signage, brochures, interpretation, historic preservation, and recreation. He has provided graphic design direction and editorial input on a broad range of projects promoting economic, industrial, cultural and Erie Canal development.


Jacquiline P. Minicucci, ADMINISTRATIVE aSSISTANT

Phone: (716) 278-8753
Email:  [email protected]

Jackie is responsible for the Department’s finances including payroll, budget, grant reimbursement and Empower Niagara. She is also the Niagara County Planning Board Secretary and the Brownfields Program Treasurer.  Jackie also handles all administrative duties for the Niagara Orleans Land Improvement Corporation.


William D. Hilts, Jr., Sportfishing Program Coordinator

Phone: (716) 282-8992 x303
Email: [email protected] ​​​​​​​

Bill works out of Destination Niagara USA where he is responsible for Niagara County outdoor promotions including sportfishing promotion, conferences and tradeshows, hosting members of the outdoor media, and writing articles on outdoor recreation.