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Alumni Association Presents Professional Roundtable Conversations: October 2

Posted: October 1, 2014

The Alumni Association will present Professional Roundtable Conversations, an open discussion with Buffalo State alumni who are successful in the fields of political science and criminal justice, Thursday, October 2, at 2:00 p.m. in the Campbell Student Union Social Hall.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call (716) 878-3774.

Featured speakers:

Joseph Beitz, '79
Beitz is the president and founder of Aurora Risk Associates LLC, a risk consulting firm serving the U.S, Canadian, and European Union reinsurance marketplace in the management of both insurance and reinsurance products and services. Previously, he has served as the vice president of Belvedere Insurance Company in Bermuda; vice president of treaty underwriting for Odyssey Reinsurance Company in Stamford, CT; and president and COO of NOVA Casualty. He was also involved with the formation and launch of CastlePoint Reinsurance Company in Bermuda, where he served as president, and had the opportunity to ring the bell on Wall Street when the company went public in 2008.

George C. Burgasser, Esq., '76
Burgasser is currently assistant United States attorney assigned to the Narcotics and Organized Crime Section in the Western District of New York (WDNY), and also serves as the FBI Safe Streets Task Force (SSTF) coordinator. Burgasser began his service with the Department of Justice in June 1988, and transferred to the WDNY in December 1996. He was also the assistant district attorney for Niagara County in New York, and an associate for R. Thomas Burgasser P.C.


Dr. Nikolas Lemos, '93

Lemos was born in Athens, Greece, and currently lives in San Francisco, CA, where he is chief forensic toxicologist and forensic laboratory director at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of the City and County of San Francisco. He is also a clinical professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco. Immediately before moving to California, he was head of toxicology at St. George’s Hospital Medical School of the University of London.


Frank Caruso, '78
Caruso has been serving as justice of the Niagara County Supreme Court in the 8th Judicial District of New York since 2006, and was elected to a 14- year term in 2008. He was elected Town of Tonawanda Town Justice in 1995, and re-elected in 1999 and 2003. In June 2001, Justice Caruso was the first Town Justice to be appointed as acting Buffalo City Court judge, and continued to serve in that capacity until the end of 2006 when he was appointed to the New York State Supreme Court to fill the vacancy left by Justice Eugene Pigott. Justice Caruso received endorsements from all political parties for both his campaigns for Town of Tonawanda Justice and Supreme Court Justice. He also served as deputy city attorney and city prosecutor for the City of Tonawanda. His numerous legal affiliations include member and past president of the Bar Association of the Tonawandas; and member of the Erie County, New York State, and American Bar Associations, among others.

Timothy McFarland, '82
Assistant Attorney General NYS Timothy McFarland has been a prosecutor for most of his 28-year legal career. He has been with the New York State Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit in Rochester for the past 17 years, prosecuting both Medicaid fraud of medical and social service providers and patient abuse and neglect in nursing homes. He started his career with the New York City Department of Probation, and handled violation of probation proceedings. Farland then worked for six years with the Brooklyn District Attorney and the New York City Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor in Manhattan, prosecuting street-level drug crimes and placing addicted narcotic offenders in long-term drug treatment.

Clint Morano, '88
Morano currently is assigned as the director for Maritime Security on the National Joint Terrorism Task Force, located at National Counterterrorism Center in McLean, VA. He assumed his current duties October 2014. Special Agent Morano reported to the FBI in January 1999 after serving 10 1/2 years active duty in the United States Navy. During his career, he assisted the Counterterrorism Branch with the investigation of the attacks upon the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. He also investigated foreign intelligence activities targeting the United States, and is the subject matter expert for Aviation Cargo Security. His awards include three Meritorious Service Medals, Joint Commendation Medal, two Navy Commendation Medals and two Navy Achievement Medals.

Debra Vizzi, 92
Vizzi, LCSW, serves as executive director of VIP Community Services in Bronx, NY, one of the largest social service agencies of its kind in the state. A native of the Bronx, Debra spent her childhood being bounced around between foster homes until the age of 12, when she entered the Sisters of the Good Shepherd group home in Manhattan. While attending Buffalo State, she accepted a work-study position with Shirley Lord, a professor in the Social Work Department. Instead of burying her childhood experiences, she used them as a motivation to help others. She has served as the executive director for Easter Seals and Prevent Child Abuse. Today, Debra expertly guides VIP and its $180 million annual budget. VIP offers a wide array of behavioral health and medical services, social services, housing services, and community development services in the poorest urban county in the nation.

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