Newcommissioners (002)
Rev. Mark Blue, Jennifer Persico, and Stephen Tucker

The NFTA welcomes three new commissioners.  Please take a look below:

Reverend Mark E. Blue

Reverend Mark E. Blue was called to be pastorate of Second Baptist Church of Lackawanna New York on November 27, 2001. Previously, Rev. Blue had joined the United States Air Force Reserve, serving from 1983 to 2003 retiring with the rank of Master Sergeant. He was employed at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station – 914th Tactical Airlift Group as an Aircraft Propulsion Technician. He also served on staff as a base Equal Opportunity Employment Counselor and served on the Air Force Reserve Base Human Resource Development Council.

Rev. Blue received the Buffalo Citizenship Award, as well receiving the key to the City of Lackawanna, from former Mayor Norman Polanski. Rev. Blue is the president and founder of the SBC Foundation, President of the Baptist Ministers’ Conference of Buffalo and Vicinity, and as the President of the Board of Directors of the Lackawanna Chambers of Commerce, and member of the Lackawanna Ministerial Alliance, a Board Member of the Erie County Fair Housing Partnership, and sits on the Advisory Board of Hilbert College.

He has formally held positions as Second Vice President and Program Committee Chair of the Baptist Minister Conference of Buffalo New York and Vicinity, Chairperson of the Community Action Organization Overall Policy Council for Head Start, and CAO Board Member.

Rev. Blue completed his Associates Degree in Aerospace Technology in October 2001, Associate Degree in June 2007, a bachelor’s degree in June 2009 in Christian Ministry at the Rochester Center of Theological and Biblical Studies and currently enrolled in a master’s Program at the Andersonville Theological Seminary.

Rev. Blue married Angela Blue July 14, 1984 and they are the proud parents of two sons, Robert Blue, a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology, and Joseph Blue, graduate of Syracuse University.

Jennifer C. Persico

Jennifer Persico is a partner with Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman and serves as the firm's Litigation and Dispute Resolution Practice Team Leader. She concentrates her practice in commercial litigation, including contract claims on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants. Ms. Persico also handles premises liability claims, corporate law, municipal law, foreclosures and real estate. She has had extensive experience in resolving complex disputes on behalf of her clients using both litigation and non-litigation methods.

Ms. Persico presents seminars for businesses and municipalities on various topics including CPLR Article 78 proceedings and real property tax lien foreclosures. She has also served as Majority Counsel to the Erie County Legislature.

A member in good standing of the New York State Bar Association, Ms. Persico is a member of the Women’s Bar Association of New York and the Erie County Bar Association. She is a graduate of the University at Buffalo, and the University at Buffalo School of Law.

Active in the Western New York Community, Ms. Persico is a member of the Erie County Medical Center Corporation, Board of Directors, and Director and Treasurer of the Western New York Trial Lawyers Association.

She is admitted to practice before all Courts in New York State and in the United States District Court for the Western District of New York.

Stephen Tucker

Mr. Tucker is the inaugural President & CEO of the Northland Workforce Training Center and is responsible for the management, oversight and day-to-day operations of the 80,000 square-foot facility focused on training and preparing Western New Yorkers for careers in advanced manufacturing and clean energy. 

A U.S. Air Force veteran, Mr. Tucker has over fifteen years of workforce development experience. He previously served as the assistant executive director for Partners for a Competitive Workforce and as the vice-president of workforce development with the Urban League of Greater Cincinnati.

Stephen joined Northland at a time when the site was little more than a collection of abandoned manufacturing buildings with leaking roofs, crumbling floors and peeling paint, but he was excited by the vision for the project and quickly developed a passion for the mission that was contagious.

Mr. Tucker disproved the notion that it takes a long time for an “outsider” to be accepted into the community and soon became the face of Northland. He shared his vision in churches, community centers, schools, government offices and everywhere he could about the “outstanding career opportunities available in the trades” and the new manufacturing world that was “not your grandfather’s manufacturing.”