Friday Feature: Gary Major + The Buffalo Bills

Happy Friday to the City of Buffalo! Our Seneca One team is proud to announce the “Friday Feature,” a series highlighting the people who help strengthen our Seneca One community on a daily basis.

This week we’re featuring Gary Major and his dog Diggs, residents of Seneca One and members of the first wave of residential tenants to ever move into 1 Seneca Street. This duo has a contagious spirit that helps enhance the already electric atmosphere surrounding WNY’s tallest skyscraper and Seneca One community.

Gary Major loves the city of Buffalo and the Buffalo Bills, and he’s not afraid to tell you about it.

Among the roughly 115 residents of Seneca One, it’s tough to stand out. But it’s not hard to find Gary Major in a crowd of people.

Through the halls of Seneca One, on any given day, you might find Major donning a red No. 17 Josh Allen jersey and a pair of shorts with a charging Buffalo accompanied by his beautiful young puppy, Diggs, named after Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs.

Got a question about the upcoming 2021 Bills season? Don’t worry. Gary’s got you covered. Do you want to know who the best quarterback in the NFL is? Gary will tell you in his unbiased opinion who that is. Need a clue? He’s 6-foot-5, 238 pounds, and just signed a six-year, $258 million deal with $150 million guaranteed.

No matter the conversation, each answer he gives you is met with a beaming signature smile that radiates pure happiness.

“I love Buffalo,” Major said. “Buffalo is a special place, a place where strangers will treat you like family. Good luck finding that in another city.”

Major is a resident of the apartments at Seneca One, and since moving to Buffalo in 2020, his love for the city is as elite as a flat or drum chicken wing, doused in bleu cheese on a crisp football Sunday.

He grew up in Southwest Florida, just outside of Miami, in Miami Dolphins country. His mother and father, originally from New Jersey, have strong ties to the New York Giants. When the Giants battled the Bills in Super Bowl XXV, Gary grew tired of all the Giants talk. Since he didn’t like Dan Marino and the Dolphins, he made a bold decision that very day.

“In 1990, my dad had a Super Bowl party,” Major said. “I said, ‘I don’t like the Giants. I’m going with the Bills.’ I was like seven years old.”

We all know the fate of the Bills in that Super Bowl, but that didn’t stop Gary from loving his beloved Bills. As time went on, his love for the Bills blossomed. After years of working as a realtor in Southwest Florida, his passion for the Bills finally caught up to him; he decided that he must to move to Buffalo.

In August 2020, Gary made the move from Southwest Florida to Buffalo.  Upon his arrival and searching high and low for the right place to live, he stumbled upon Seneca One.  The positive atmosphere and warm welcome from the “City of Good Neighbors” made his decision to live here very easy.

“Moving into Seneca One was the best decision hands down that my wife and I have made since moving to Buffalo,” Major said. “The staff and tenants here always make us feel special. Everyone treats our dog, Diggs, like gold. We have made many friendships that will last a lifetime.”

Now that Gary has settled into his dream city, there is another goal that he would like to check off his list. He hoped to one day be heavily involved in the Bills’ organization and will stop at nothing to get there. 

Persistence goes a long way in a city like Buffalo. Recently, he was awarded a position with the Buffalo Bills as a Guest Services Representative. He did it. He’s in and he’s ready to work hard to climb the ranks. He has hopes that this position will catapult him into the next phase of his life and career.

The Seneca One community couldn’t be more proud of Gary, his commitment to the city of Buffalo and the Bills, his persistence, and his willingness to get the job done. The next time you see Gary and Diggs around Seneca One, be sure to say, “Hey-eh-eh-eh,” but make sure you’re not a Patriots fan. He might walk right by you!

Seneca One Deep Dive: Verivend & The 1992 Dream Team

Welcome to this week’s Seneca One Deep Dive! The team at Seneca One identifies exciting up-and-coming people, projects, and companies to dive into and share with our audiences. This week we’re shouting “cannonball!” from the rooftops as we jump into Verivend.

Fact: Rodney Reisdorf, Aaron Santarosa, Jonathan Ebel, and Daniel Devlin want their clients to get paid.

This fintech quartet has had enough of email chains, physical paperwork, and mismanagement of finances. With that being said, they are not afraid to challenge financial traditional methods.

Friends, meet Verivend, a financial software company that has built a highly secure, cloud-based platform for the management of business transactions and reduces friction and risks between accounts payable and accounts receivable through a  designed invoicing system.

The team consists of Reisdorf, Co-Founder and CEO,  Satanrosa, Co-Founder and President, Ebel, Co-Founder and CTO, and Devlin, Chief of Sales. This group of innovators are no stranger to the fintech industry and mismanagement of business finances.

Leading off is Santarosa. He is the President of The Santarosa Group, the parent company of Buffalo Fuel, SGS Recovery, Frontier Fibers, and JAGG Electrical & Control, and has expertise in the commodities, transportation, and renewable energy industries. Then there is Reisdorf, who has a successful history in the B2B and B2C industries and is a results-driven leader results-driven leader of SaaS and enterprise software solutions. He also has deep expertise in architecting client service strategies from concept to completion, software platform and product development, operational process design, and building successful cross-functional teams.

Ebel is a seasoned software architect and proven technology leader. Before Verivend, he was Chief Architect at ACV Auctions, where he led and grew the Software Engineering team, created ACV’s Product team. Batting clean up is Devlin, who brings a wealth of experience in revenue growth strategy and P&L management. It’s safe to say that Verivend is Seneca One’s version of the 1992 dream team.

“Verivend’s founding team has had the fortunate opportunity to be part of several successful startups in the Buffalo area,” Reisdorf said. “We’ve always been passionate about solving real problems and building companies around doing just that. With our team’s combined experience of scaling successful companies and the value that Verivend brings to businesses of all sizes, taking this path in our collective career journeys was a no-brainer.”

Since 2019, Verivend has slowly garnered attention for its unique software-as-a-service platform that challenges traditional financial methods and offers a faster way for companies to pay and get paid. This means no more email chains, physical paperwork, or time wasted.

This allows businesses to predict and rely on their cashflow.

“Fintech is very hot right now, with many players in the space focusing on a number of areas in the financial services industry,” Reisdorf said. “There’s a major shift happening with both consumers and companies moving from the traditional ways of managing their finances to rapidly adopting solutions that save them time, offer transparency, and reduce fraud – all of which are why we started Verivend. We’ve built an incredibly robust software-as-a-service platform that offers the fastest way in the market for companies to pay and get paid. Our unique payment and transaction network powered by Verivend’s proprietary digital wallet allows instant B2B and B2C payments and unparalleled cashflow predictability and transparency. We’re very proud of what we’ve built and even prouder to be doing it in our hometown of Buffalo.”

Last spring, Reisdorf, Santarosa, and Ebel were looking for a vibrant and lively office space. They toured Seneca One and were floored by the welcoming atmosphere of Serendipity Labs, and the flexible shared co-working and office space right in the heart of Buffalo’s new aged renaissance.

Since their arrival, they have experienced a whole new level of growth and are confident that with a positive ecosystem here at Seneca One, their secure and affordable billing solution will ascend to new heights.

“Buffalo’s tech hub is a huge asset to not only the city, but to companies like Verivend,” Reisdorf said. “The access to other companies in all stages of growth thought leadership, and talent is invaluable to the success of Buffalo’s startup ecosystem. Not that we think starting a company (especially a fintech) is easy by any means, but being part of Buffalo’s tech hub and the ability to access others who have walked the path before us, or who are walking alongside us on the journey is an incredible advantage in guiding the growth and success of our company.”

Be on the lookout for Verivend as they continue to navigate through the world of financial business solutions. You may also find them at the Seneca One Lobby Bar talking tech with other entrepreneurs!


Seneca One Deep Dive: SkateSkins & Creativity in Hockey

Welcome to the Seneca One Deep Dive! The team at Seneca One identifies exciting up and coming people, projects, and companies to dive into and share with our audiences. This week we’re diving headfirst into Just Dishin and SkateSkins!

BUFFALO, NY: One is overcome with a feeling of exuberance when you step foot into the offices of  Just Dishin and SkateSkins at the top of Seneca One, Buffalo’s solo skyscraper. Perhaps it’s the density of up and coming companies growing together on one floor of the recently woken sleeping giant that is Seneca One, or it’s the friendly greeting and overwhelming excitement on the faces of Nick Ciavarella and Matthew Keeler, two young entrepreneurs that are this week’s Seneca One Deep Dive!

It’s not because of the gorgeous view of the waterfront and bustling downtown Buffalo, the giant throw rug of a Jordan 1 hockey skate (that nobody dares to step on), or the collection of exclusive New Era ball caps in the office that this team uses for inspiration. It’s the tangible passion and eagerness to push Buffalo forward that fills the four walls of their space high up in the tower of Seneca One. 

Ciavarella and Keeler are members of Just Dishin and SkateSkins; both are lifestyle and hockey companies looking to push the game of hockey forward with a focus on creativity. Just Dishin offers hockey-influenced streetwear as an e-commerce initiative as well as digital marketing services while SkateSkins offers customizable skate accessories that are close to being protected by their very first patent. 

On June 16, the dynamic duo and their other full-time teammate, Derek Hosken, made the move to Seneca One. Since their arrival, the team has taken full advantage of the collaborative collision here at Seneca One and has grown into their brand new space.

“I think [Seneca One] is a place where a whole team can get together and bounce inspiration off of each other,” Keeler said. “It’s a place where we can all come together, work on ideas and work on different projects that we’re all involved in and all want to see fulfilled.”

JustDishin was founded in 2012 by Keeler and Ben Madafferi in a small college dorm room at St. John Fisher College in Rochester, NY. The idea was to help create a new wave of stylish fashion collaborations to the sport of hockey and to empower athletes to provide their flavor through their creativity. Since 2012, the passion and drive of Keeler and Madafferi led to a period of unexpected organic growth. 

In 2016, they added Ciavarella as Chief Operating Officer to help with media and digital marketing, and in 2020 they launched SkateSkins. In addition to Ciavarella, Keeler, and Hosken, JustDishin and SkateSkins have seven part-time employees, including Madafferi.

The group’s love for the game and appetite for fashion and expressiveness garnered the attention of Buffalo Bills tackle Dion Dawkins and Buffalo Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin. Both are now clients of the design department at Just Dishin. These guys have even worked on projects with Toronto Maple Leafs’ superstar Auston Mathews

This lead to an opportunity to showcase their products on the Barstool Sports media platform, not to mention a special invite to visit the Barstool Studio which took place in early 2021.

“You’re going to get opportunities. You have to put in that time and that work,” Ciavarella said. “If you love what you do every day and follow your passion, I think there are a lot of good things that can happen. I think for our group as a whole, it [showed] our group that anything is possible.” 

From the Seneca One perspective, we highly recommend that you keep an eye on this young team of enormous talent not only in Buffalo but worldwide as their products begin to gain momentum in the hockey world! 

For more information, follow Just Dishin and SkateSkins on Instagram!