Games Create Change

Matt talks with Asi Burak, CEO of Power Play NYC, about the growing popularity of e-sports over traditional sports among millennials and women; Asi’s role as the producer for the largest industry-facing gaming festival in NYC, the Games for Change Festival and how games impact education, healthcare, research, civics, and social issues;  and new research on neurogaming and the ways in which it can improve health, fitness and cognitive skills.

Episode 44: Power Is With The States

Talking Cities Episode 44: Power is with the States

Matt talks with New York State Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul about how humble beginnings with her very socially-conscious family pulled her toward public service at a very young age; her start in politics working with legendary Buffalonian Tim Russert and longtime Senator of New York Daniel Patrick Moynahan; her enthusiasm around Buffalo’s burgeoning tech scene as seen on the BNMC; and her pride in her role to support Governor Cuomo’s laser focus on bringing back upstate New York by turning upside the typical economic development model.

Lt. Gov. Hochul has been an elected official at the town, county, state, and federal levels, providing her with an extraordinarily unique perspective of how government can truly work for the people. She view her ability to find common issues to “cross the aisle” as a hallmark of her success in Washington. She notes the importance of collaboration among women of different parties to enact great positive change.

She is chairing the NYS Women’s Suffrage Commission and speaks passionately about encouraging everyone, especially women, to step up and take risks to do great things.

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Curiosity Driven Innovation

Matt talks with Sam Marrazzo, the BNMC’s new Chief Innovation Officer. Sam talks about why he sees himself as a connector of technology, people, and places. He also touches on how being stationed on the U.S.S. Independence kicked off his career in technology; the importance of strong university alignment to drive innovation within cities; his longtime partnership with Topcoder; and why we should all “run to math”.

University at Buffalo: A Global Campus

In this episode, Matt talks with University at Buffalo President, Satish Tripathi, about how a UB education prepares students to respond to community needs and global issues; the research that UB is conducting that is making an impact locally and around the world; and the University’s efforts to attract millennial learners to campus and keep them here in Western New York.

Episode 37: Creating Communities of Value

In this episode, Matt talks with Landscape Architect, Joy Kuebler, about the nonprofit she started called Popup Park Buffalo that encourages kids through play; Joy’s definition of ‘placemaking’ and how to create communities of value for everyone from ages 8 to 80; and what her ideal place would look and feel like.

Phoenix: A Hotbed of Innovation

Linda Hunt, CEO of Dignity Health Arizona, visited the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus last week on a benchmarking trip with the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce where we invited her as a guest on Talking Cities. On the show, Linda discusses opportunities in Phoenix to leverage Dignity Health, as well as challenges facing the area and other southwestern cities. A nurse with aspirations to lead from early on her career, Linda climbed the corporate ladder of health care, seeing and experiencing the profession from all angles and defining what it means to be a transformational leader along the way.

#1 Software Community on the Planet

Matt talks with Mike Morris, CEO TopCoder, about going from a developer to an entrepreneur; starting the number one community of software developers on the planet more than 15 years ago; TopCoder’s model of assigning co-pilots to help find solutions to complex problems; and the explosion of the gig economy to support the TopCoder community.


Sewing Hope in the Lives of Others

In this special 1-hour episode, Matt has a conversation with Bishop Tommy Reid and Pastor William Gillison about the role of the church in reviving cities; how technology and the media have changed ministry through the years; and what the two pastors with over 100 years of ministry have to say for our listeners about fulfilling your dreams and sustaining hope.

Bringing Stakeholders Together

Michael Weiner, President & CEO of the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, talks with Matt about the role of the United Way as both a world-wide network as well as a leader within local communities; his view of the working poor and racial inequity as systemic problems faced across the country; driving data by zip code; and why his organization has found success in digital fundraising.

Gamifying Education with Gregg Mojica

Episode 31: Gamifying Education with Gregg Mojica

Matt talks with Gregg Mojica, Chief Technology Officer of Gradology, about life as a software engineer and serial entrepreneur at age 18. They talk about “gamifying” education to improve student grades, how Gregg’s motivation to have his name in the wp-content store while in high school pushed him to create a number of wp-contents, and his role as a blogger for AppCoda, one of the leading iOS programming communities. Oh, and what it’s like to turn down Facebook.

Leadership is About Taking People Over the Bridge

Leadership is About Taking People Over the Bridge


Matt talks with Congressman Brian Higgins about the role of the federal government in finding new ways to finance infrastructure; social media igniting people around the world in the face of repressive regimes; the importance of the Great Lakes and waterways; and the celebration of location he sees in many cities.


Know Your Impact

Know Your Impact / Episode 28 / Released May 2, 2017

Matt talks with Vincent Stanley, director of philosophy for Patagonia, about what prompted the creation of such a socially-conscious company, the importance of sharing what they learned, how technology has impacted the industry, and why telling people “don’t buy this jacket” was such a big deal.


Refugees: An Economic Force

Eva Hassett, Executive Director of the International Institute of Buffalo, talks about her love for Rust Belt cities and how she went from a career in government to leading a refugee resettlement agency; the economic impact that refugees and immigrants have on a city and how they’re reversing population decline; and her vision for leaders at all levels to work collaboratively and strategically on behalf of this issue.

Reconnecting the Community

Reconnecting the Community / episode 26 / Released April

Justin Booth, Executive Director of GObike Buffalo talks about the role infrastructure has in behavior change and how it helps facilitates an active living mindset in communities; the future of transportation and the opportunities and challenges of a society reliant on autonomous vehicles; how technology influences our ability to get around by improving accessibility & convenience of different modes; and the importance of government providing resources & funding for maintenance of existing facilities and how the private sector can support this work.


Technology Disrupts Traditional Industry

Technology Disrupts Traditional Industry / Episode 25 / Released April 11, 2017

George Chouman, CEO of ACV Auctions, talks to Matt about learning the essentials of business from his parents at a young age; why he left Synacor, Inc., a multi-million dollar company to lead ACV Auctions and pursue his passion for startups; and how he’s able to give back the mentorship he once received as a young entrepreneur through his involvement with Launch NY.

Ask the Bigger Question

Ask the Bigger Question / Episode 24 / Released April 4, 2017

Matt talks with Roseanne Haggerty, President of Community Solutions, which works to end homelessness and the conditions that cause it. She highlights specific projects in Hartford, Brownsville (Brooklyn) and Times Square; their role in helping communities reorganize the way they work; building high-performing command centers with the full team at the table; providing the freedom to challenge old assumptions; and cultivating an edgy workplace culture.

Active Living by Design

Active Living by Design/Episode 23/ Released March 28, 2017

Matt and Joanne Lee, Collaborative Learning Director for Active Living by Design, talk about keeping your feet on the ground while working on a national scale; local elected officials setting the tone to transform communities; social media lifting community voices; and the importance of carving out time to learn.

This podcast is available through iTunes, Google Play and Stitcher Radio.

Disruptors or Partners?

Disruptors or Partners?/Episode 22/ Released March 21, 2017


Matt talks with designer & futurist Chris Cowart about the impact of technology in on city planning and staying ahead of disruption; practical wp-contentlication of the importance of reverse mentoring; humanizing medical technologies; the importance of engaging youth in emerging sports, and much more.

This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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Making the Economy Work for Everybody

Making the Economy Work for Everybody/Episode 21/ Released March 14, 2017


Matt talks with Clara Miller, President of the F.B. Heron Foundation, about Heron’s leadership in shining a light on the need for impact investing alongside mission investing; how asset managers and corporations are responding to millennials and why it’s important; and why the old Girl Scout adage “leave the campsite better than we found it” still wp-contentlies.

This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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Changing the World

Changing the World/Episode 20/Released March 7, 2017

Matt talks with Su Sanni, co-founder of We Did It, a software platform that helps nonprofits fundraise online, about getting bit by the entrepreneur bug in college; growing up as a first generation Nigerian American; and the surreal experience of waking up one winter morning to find himself on the cover of Black Enterprise.

This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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Finding the Right People

Finding the Right People / Episode 19 / Released February 28, 2017

Hear from Norma Nowak, entrepreneur, scientist, innovator and director of UB’s NYS Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences. Norma talks about the road that led her to founding Empire Genomics, a spin out company from research developed at Roswell Park Cancer Institute; the critical role her research played in the Human Genome Project; and how the advancement of technology has accelerated the genomics field in ways she couldn’t have imagined.

This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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Silicon Valley of Food Systems

Silicon Valley of Food Systems / Episode 18 / Released February 21, 2017

In this episode, Matt talks with Dr. Samina Raja, Principal Investigator of the Food Systems Planning and Healthy Communities Lab in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University at Buffalo, about her work with one of the largest USDA grants for food systems research, Growing Food Connections; how she’s married urban planning and public health in her profession and the lessons local governments can learn from this type of collaboration; and how refugees in Buffalo are impacted by their food environments.

This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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The Next Generation of Medicine

The Next Generation of Medicine / Episode 17 / Released February 14, 2017


Matt speaks with Dr. Adnan Siddiqui about growing up & training in Pakistan; how rebellion and family experiences led him to become a world-renowned neurosurgeon; and the incredible partnerships and medical innovation hwp-contentening right here in Buffalo.


This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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Connecting Communities for the Common Good

Connecting Communities for the Common Good / Episode 16 / Released February 7, 2017

Matt talks with Anne Wadsworth, social innovator and co-founder of Girls Education Collaborative. GEC is piloting a community-led initiative in Kitenga, Tanzania, that supports the transformative power of education to enable young women to become catalysts for change in their communities. They touch on the importance in civic engagement in this international effort and using technology to build a school halfway around the world.

BNMC’s podcast series, Talking Cities, hosted by our President & CEO Matt Enstice, investigates cutting-edge innovations for cities in America and beyond, featuring people our team has connected with who are creating vibrant, healthier, and more sustainable communities. In each episode, we will talk to someone who shares our mission of furthering economic growth, igniting urban revitalization, and building strong, thriving communities, and is doing so either locally, globally, or systemically.

This podcast is available through iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

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