The 53rd Annual Business Awards Dinner

The Wehle School of Business is proud to announce the 53rd Annual Business Awards Dinner, Tuesday, October 10, 2023.  The banquet will be held at Salvatore's Italian Gardens, 6461 Transit Road, Depew, NY, with cocktails starting at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m.    

Kindly RSVP by Friday, September 22, 2023. 
Please contact the Wehle School of Business at 716-888-2160 or @email with questions.  Fill out a reservation form and email to @email or register and pay online.

Click to Register

The Richard J. Wehle School of Business established the Business Executive of the Year Award in 1969.  This award is presented to a WNY business executive who has earned distinction professionally and as a leader in a broad range of civic affairs.  Canisius University is proud to name Nancy W. Ware as the 2023 Business Executive of the Year.

Nancy W. Ware '78, MBA '85

President, Ware Property Services LLC (founder and past President of EDUKIDS)

Nancy W. Ware is President of WPS Management Company, a Property Management and Development Company based in West Seneca.  Ms. Ware was also the founder and past President of EduKids Early Childhood Centers, WNY’s largest privately owned group of childcare centers.  

As President of EduKids from 1989 to 2020, Ms. Ware was responsible for strategic planning, operations, facility development and management for the 16 Nationally Accredited Child Care Centers, including the corporate on-site Center at Rich Products World Headquarters in Buffalo.

Ms. Ware grew up in South Buffalo and is a first-generation college graduate receiving her undergraduate and MBA from Canisius.  In 1989, she was working in Human Resources and needed to find reliable childcare for her sons.  What she discovered was that, in the few facilities that existed, they we custodial in nature with no educational component for early learning or preparing children for future schooling. Nancy combined her business acumen with a friend’s early education background and EduKids was born.  Nancy is often quoted as saying, “in my MBA classes we were taught over and over, find a need and fill it better than anyone else – that’s what makes a successful company.”  That is what Nancy set out to do and EduKids was born.  

EduKids went on to be the largest women owned business in WNY, with over 400 employees serving more than 2000 families, at 16 Centers throughout Erie County. 

Nancy Ware is an active member of the community, serving on several Boards and organizations, and was the first women to sit on the Evans Bancorp Inc., Board of Directors.  She serves on the Canisius University Board of Trustees as the first women Trustee Emeritus.   She is Vice Chair of the Explore and More Children’s Museum Board of Directors and Secretary of the Catholic Health System Board of Directors.  

Ms. Ware is also on the Board of Directors of the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, which is committed to helping individuals, families and organizations make their charitable goals a reality.  

For her advocacy and commitment to community, Nancy has been recognized on numerous occasions, on the Buffalo Business First annual list on powerful Women in WNY and was awarded their Women of Influence, Lifetime Achievement Award in 2019.  She attributes much of her success to the support of her husband of 45 years, Don, a undergraduate classmate at Canisius, her three boys who grew up working behind the scenes at EduKids, and the incredible leadership team at EduKids who worked with her every step of the way.

Most recently, Nancy has been named a 2023 Women of Distinction by the NYS Senate at an Albany ceremony.

Canisius University is proud to present the Dr. Richard A. Shick award to David C. Wagner '00.  The Dr. Richard A. Shick Award is given to an alumnus for their commitment to the University and the Richard J. Wehle School of Business.

David C. Wagner

Executive Vice President, Roosevelt and Cross Inc.

David C. Wagner joined Roosevelt & Cross in 2000 after receiving his B.S. in finance from Canisius College.  Roosevelt & Cross is a leading underwriter of municipal bonds that was co-founded by Archibald Roosevelt, the son of President Theodore Roosevelt in 1946. Roosevelt & Cross is headquartered in New York City and David manages the Buffalo Office.

David specializes in municipal sales with an institutional customer base of community banks, insurance companies, investment advisors and mutual funds around the northeast.  He also works with over 100 families taking care of their municipal portfolios.  In 2018, David took on the role of sales manager overseeing 10 salesman.  He was also added onto the Roosevelt & Cross board of directors in 2019 where he became the first member from outside the headquarters in NYC.

Since his graduation from Canisius, David has believed that volunteering and giving back to his alma mater is extremely important.  He has served on the Canisius Alumni Board, past chair of the Canisius Business Advisory Council for the Richard J. Wehle School of Business, and just finished 2 terms on the Canisius Board of Regents.  David annually supports the Canisius Blue & Gold golf tournament, Regents Ball, Canisius Business Awards dinner and Canisius athletics. He comes back to campus and has spoken to the state and local finance classes to share the knowledge he has gained over the past 23 years.  David regularly brings students to his office to show them what it is like trading bonds for a day. He also takes this time to help use his broad network in the Buffalo community to help Canisius students find internships and job interviews.  

David was the recipient of the Buffalo Business First 40 under 40 award.  Outside of Canisius, David is a member of the Independent Bankers of New York State, New York State insurance Association, Knights of Columbus and past president of Lancaster Country Club.