State Senator to Deliver Commencement Address

George Maziarz Will Speak to GCC Graduates at May 18th Ceremony

Batavia, NY- For 35 years, George Maziarz has held a position of public service, the past 19 in the New York State Senate. Sen. Maziarz will bring his wealth of experience and knowledge to Genesee Community College on May 18, 2014 when he will address the graduates of the class of 2014 during the College’s 46th Commencement. The ceremony begins at 1 p.m. in the Anthony T. Zambito Gymnasium on the Batavia campus.

Sen. Maziarz grew up in North Tonawanda and graduated from Niagara County Community College and Niagara University. In 1978 he was appointed City Clerk in his hometown and served in that position until 1989 when he became Niagara County Clerk. In 1995, he won a hotly contested special election to the New York State Senate and has held the 62nd district seat ever since, representing all of Niagara and Orleans Counties, and a portion of Monroe County.

Maziarz, a Republican, serves as Vice President Pro Tempore of the Senate and is chairman of the Energy and Telecommunications Committee. He is also a member of several other committees including: Higher Education; Education; Consumer Protection; Environmental Conservation; Transportation; Crime Victims, Crime & Correction.

During his Senate career he has been associated with many landmark pieces of legislation. He helped develop “Megan’s Law,” the registry which enables law enforcement officers and communities to track the whereabouts of convicted sex offenders. He authored the Assisted Living Reform Act, which created a host of long-desired reforms in the assisted living industry to better protect seniors and consumers. And he successfully championed the effort to have New York State sign the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River Basin Water Resources Compact to help manage the Great Lakes for generations to come.

As Energy Committee Chairman, Senator Maziarz has successfully championed initiatives like the ReCharge NY program, the net metering law, and reforming and reauthorizing the power plant siting law. He continues to advocate for a 21st century energy policy that capitalizes on new technology and regional assets like the Niagara hydropower facility, which is located in his district.

Senator Maziarz and his wife Beverly reside in Newfane. “We are honored to have Sen. Maziarz speak and be part of this year’s celebration,” said GCC President Dr. James Sunser. “I think having a speaker from our own area who is familiar with the College and with the demographics of our students provides a meaningful address for everyone attending the ceremony.”
As of Friday, April 25th, GCC is expecting 1,017 students to graduate in May, with another 44 graduates pending completion of their studies this summer.

While Commencement is open to the public, seats in the gymnasium are reserved for family and friends of graduates. The ceremony will be streamed live on campus through a video cast to the Stuart Steiner Theatre, Room T102 and on all the monitors throughout the campus – including the Student Union and cafeteria for those who would like to tune in. Tickets are not necessary to watch the ceremony in these areas.

Graduates, families and friends are encouraged to record memories, well wishes and pictures from commencement using #sunygcc14 on Twitter and Instagram to be shared throughout the day. Those attending the reception following the commencement ceremony are also invited to have their picture taken on the Forum stage, which will be posted to the college’s Facebook account.

Immediately following commencement, a reception with light refreshments will be hosted in the Forum for all guests and graduates.

The college is also offering free child care services during commencement for children eight weeks to five years of age. Please sign your children up in the Student Activities office or call 585-343-0055 ext. 6261.

For more information, contact Marketing Communications Associate Director Donna Rae Sutherland at (585) 343-0055 ext. 6616, or via email:

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Editor’s notes:
-A photograph of Senator Maziarz is available at:

-There will be a pre-Commencement Media Hour at 12 noon introducing members of the media to a handful of graduating Genesee students, whose achievements represent some of the College’s best and brightest.