Welcome to the Say Yes...Forever Campaign

Investing in Buffalo's future leaders today.

Your gift to the Say Yes… Forever Scholarship Endowment Fund helps make a bachelor’s, associate’s or certificate degree attainable for Buffalo Public or Charter school students. Plus, when you support this campaign a $25 million challenge grant gifts $1 for every $3 raised!


Come learn about Say Yes Buffalo, our universal college scholarship promise for all Buffalo public and charter school students, and our wrap-around supports for all students and families.

Thank you to our sponsors.

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Fundraise For Us!

Your fundraising can transform lives. Whether you are raising $100 or $10,000, we know everyone has different demands on their time and energy and we are grateful for any fundraising you do. Please sign up today to create your own peer-to-peer fundraising campaign to support Say Yes Buffalo!

Giving Buffalo’s Students a Tuition-Free Postsecondary Education for Years to Come

What if an entire community came together to ensure that each of its children had the opportunity, support, and resources to go to college? That is the bold promise of Say Yes Buffalo. Say Yes Buffalo scholarships and grants are available to graduates of Buffalo Public and Charter schools and are privately funded by individuals, families, businesses, and organizations like you.

Every child in Buffalo has a dream.

Watch our video and learn the importance of making an impact for the future of our economy.

The Say Yes Buffalo Scholarship Endowment

Say Yes Buffalo launched a five-year, $100 million endowment campaign – “Say Yes… Forever” – to secure funding for postsecondary scholarships in perpetuity for all Buffalo Public and Charter School graduates. The campaign was seeded by an anonymous $25 million challenge gift from one individual donor, one of the single largest donations from an individual in the city’s history.

About Say Yes Buffalo

Impact Dashboard


High School Graduation Rate

0 %
From 49%

17 percentage point increase in high school graduation rate since the launch of Say Yes Buffalo (2012-2019)

Post-Secondary Matriculation Rate

0 %
From 57%

8 percentage point average increase in post-secondary enrollment rate since the launch of Say Yes Buffalo (2012-2018)

Say Yes Scholar Graduates

0 +
Since the Launch of Say Yes Buffalo

(National average time enrolled for associate’s and bachelor’s degree earners is 3.3 and 5.1 years, respectively)


Scholarship Endowment

Raise $100 Million by 2023
$60.5M Left to Raise
$39.5M Raised

This campaign will ensure the scholarship is available forever (assumes $5 million per year to be paid in scholarships). Local donor committed $25M challenge grant toward endowment with $20.5M left to be raised locally and $40M nationally.


Students Funded Since Launch
$ 0 M
Given in Scholarships
Schools Attended


Invest in Buffalo's future workforce and strengthen the Western New York community and economy.

  • School-Based Social Services
  • Early Childhood Development Program
  • Community Schools and Parent Centers
  • Mental and Primary Health Care
  • Legal Clinics
  • Buffalo College Success Network
  • Internship and Career Pathways Program
  • Scholar Mentoring Program
  • Scholar Ambassador Program
  • Boys and Men of Color Program
  • Summer Camps/Extended Learning Time
Cheyenne Ketter w/Icon Image

Meet Say Yes Buffalo Scholar Graduate

Cheyenne Ketter-Franklin

Cheyenne graduated from Bennett High School in 2013 as her class valedictorian, and never stopped achieving. Cheyenne recently graduated from the University of Buffalo’s 3+2 Masters of Business Administration program, with a concentration in Marketing. Her coursework in business began during her years at the Bennett High School Business Magnet program. “In that program, I was able to take an array of business classes that provided a strong foundation and information that I still find useful today,” said Cheyenne.

Cheyenne , now the Communications and Content Coordinator at the Buffalo History Museum, is thrilled to have launched her career in the marketing field. “I’ve always been drawn to marketing because, when effective, it can help deliver much needed products and services. I know the local marketing community is vast and highly engaged in the Buffalo community, so I’m excited to have joined the ranks,” added Cheyenne.

“I wouldn’t be the person I am today without all the people, such as teachers and guidance counselors, and organizations who have helped me along the way,” said Cheyenne. “Say Yes Buffalo is one of these organizations and I’m proud of all that they’ve done for myself and my peers.”


Thank you to our Say Yes Buffalo Endowment Fund Investors!

  • Anonymous (8)
  • Adams Actuarial LLC
  • David H. and Joan B. Alexander
  • Joyce and Stuart Angert
  • Monica Angle and Sam Magavern
  • Baillie Lumber Company
  • Bank on Buffalo
  • Allan and Melissa Baumgart
  • Lauren Baynes
  • Dr. Maura Belliveau
  • Barbara Billings and Peter Neal
  • Mrs. Beverly Blue in memory of Mrs. Sandree Blue
  • Tommie E. Blunt
  • Boland + Partners Real Estate
  • Kari and Paul Bonaro
  • Robert and Mary Ann Budin
  • Buffalo Bills Foundation
  • E.J. and Karen Butler
  • Peter and Sandy Cammarata
  • Chur Family Foundation
  • The Robert and Patricia Colby Foundation
  • Betsy Constantine & Joe Janowski
  • Joseph Contes
  • Linda Cornelius and Drew Neisser
  • Eileen Crotty in memory of Mary Ellen Crotty
  • Shanna Cramp-Owens
  • Curbell, Inc.
  • The Davis Family Foundation
  • Clotilde and Adrian Dedecker III
  • Leah Dokos
  • Dr. Bonita Durand in memory of Dr. Henry J. Durand
  • Kevin D. and Mary Dobson McDonald, in memory of Susan R. Bean
  • Hon. Susan and James Eagan
  • Ross and Mary Alice Eckert
  • Edison Street Baptist Church
  • Robert Elardo
  • Evans Bank
  • John and Paula Feroleto
  • First Shiloh Baptist Church
  • Lawrence and Deborah Franco
  • Gallogly Family Foundation
  • Sue S. Gardner, in memory of Arnold B. Gardner
  • The Joseph and Anna Gartner Foundation
  • Scott W. and Dr. Danis J. Gehl
  • Gerald Kelly Capital Corporation
  • Mr. Robert Glaser
  • Dr. Philip Glick and Dr. Drucy Borowitz
  • Grant Golden, MD and Deborah Goldman
  • The Josephine Goodyear Foundation
  • Ellen E. Grant, Ph.D., LCSW-R
  • Molly and Rob Greene in honor of Emily Wyckoff
  • Denise Gueli
  • Harvard Business School Club of Buffalo
  • The Carlos and Elizabeth Heath Foundation, James M. Wadsworth, Trustee
  • Jerilyn J. Hickey and Eric R. Frasch in honor of Morgan Williams-Bryant
  • Thomas Hunt and Laurie Dann
  • Hope Jay
  • Xanthe John
  • Bruce and Gail Johnstone
  • Todd Joseph and Barbara Ostfeld
  • Bill and Anne Joyce
  • Dr. Jeanette Jurasek
  • Dr. and Mrs. Kenneth R. Kahn
  • Dan and Leslie Keane
  • Kathie A. Keller
  • Cheyenne Ketter-Franklin
  • Will and Debra Keresztes
  • Andrew Kist and Jacob Segal
  • The Seymour H. Knox Foundation
  • The Kenneth L. and Katherine G. Koessler Foundation
  • James and Leslie Kramer Family
  • Rev. Stephen Lane
  • Lawley Insurance
  • Myra S. Lawrence
  • The Lewis Family Fund
  • Catherine and Matt Lincoln
  • Florine Luhr in memory of Patricia Sheehan Evans
  • Bill and Linda* Magavern
  • Kate and Tony Masiello
  • Jeffrey Meyer
  • Sally Marks
  • Arlene & Ruth Mathews Fund
  • Carol and Kirk Maurer
  • Mr. and Mrs. John A. Mayo
  • Nancy McNamara
  • Elizabeth McPartland
  • Blythe Merrill and Jeffrey Lebsack
  • Miracle Missions Full Gospel Church
  • Alex Montante
  • The Mulroy Family Foundation, James M. Wadsworth, Trustee
  • Paul Murrett and Jane Siebert
  • Jerri Nevilles
  • Phyllis and Harry Newman
  • Sanford and Margery Nobel
  • Kinsey O’Brien
  • Alphonso and Marcia O’Neil-White
  • David and Ann Pawlik
  • Tara Petrozzi and Thomas Silvestrini
  • The Pierce Family Charitable Foundation
  • James and Danae Pieri
  • The Pike Company, Inc.
  • The Pinto Family Foundation
  • Dr. Kevin and Merle Pranikoff
  • Print2Web, LLC
  • Linda Ray
  • Bonnie Redder
  • Rachelle & Kevin Robinson
  • Hugh and Linda Russ
  • David and Jennifer Rust
  • Melinda R. Saran
  • Say Yes to Education
  • Robert A. Scharf and Dr. Lawrence Van Heusen
  • Susan B. Schoellkopf
  • Drs. Mary Schohn and Larry Lantinga
  • Drs. Mary Schohn and Larry Lantinga
  • Susan and David Schubbe, in honor of Vincent and Mary Walsh
  • Hon. Hugh and Trudy Scott
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Chip Berry
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Kevin Brinkworth
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Gary Burns
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Christopher and Mary Collins
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Philip Corwin
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of John Militello and Duane Cady
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Walid Daham
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Edmund Eaves
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Tom Fahland
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Richard Ferranti
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Todd and Cindy Goldstein
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Gordon Gross
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of John Grabski
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Mark Jauquet
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Kenneth Edward Barrett
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Kert King
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Lee Marc
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Larry Mattar
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Luis and Natalie Mendez
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Michael Militello
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Anthony Nanula
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Philip Nanula
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Steven Nanula
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Christopher O’Donnell
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Mark Ogiony
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Paul Nanula
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Eric Reich
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of William and Carol Lorenz
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Lisa Williams
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Tony Zinaty
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Marian McCarthy
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Rachid Cheaib
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of George Churakod
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Michael Hook
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Savino and Virginia Nanula
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Roger Hungerford
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Karen Pritzker
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Gerald Cornish
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Scott McCarthy
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Michael Glick
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Bill Paxon
  • Sinatra & Company Real Estate in honor of Lee O. Signs
  • SJM3 Fund
  • Nicholas and Courtney Sinatra
  • Leonard Skrill
  • St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Clarence
  • Dr. Richard A. Stockton, Jr.
  • James and Cheryl Swiezy
  • Steve and Nicole Swift
  • Nancy Tobin and David* B. Filvaroff
  • Dr. Francisco and Janet Vasquez
  • Vogt Family Foundation
  • Debbie and Michael Walsh
  • Edward and Claire White
  • Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Matching Grants Program
  • Janet K. Wisbaum
  • Kevin Wyckoff
  • Zenner and Ritter, Inc.
  • The Reverend Vicki Zust


Imagine the joy of the recent graduate visiting Talking Leaves to pick out a book, and imagine the joy of Talking Leaves, once it reopens, as a new young customer enters the store.

Named Endowment Funds that benefit the Say Yes Buffalo Scholarship Fund

  • Charles G. Duffy Jr. and Virginia Leahy Duffy Scholarship Fund
  • Gary M. Crosby Endowed Scholarship Fund
  • Jacobs Endowment Fund

COVID-19 Fund

  • Tamara Alsace
  • Stuart and Joyce Angert
  • Rebecca Bass
  • Melissa Baumgart
  • Lauren Baynes
  • Christine Belus
  • Ann Bischof
  • Leslie M. Bixby
  • Daniel Boland
  • Meghann Boltz
  • Sarah Borer
  • Judith Brown
  • Buffalo Bills Social Justice Fund at The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo
  • Elizabeth Clark
  • Mick  Cochrane
  • Lisa Conn
  • Michael Cross
  • Amy  Cross-Viola
  • Nancy J. and Mark A. Davis
  • Emily Deisig
  • George Detitta
  • Kelly Dodd
  • Audrey and Michael Ettinger-Finley
  • Norward Family
  • Donald Fishback
  • Foundation For Jewish Philanthropies
  • Rebecca French
  • Jesana Gadley
  • Danis J Gehl
  • Katie Geoffroy
  • George Weiss Revocable Trust
  • Matthew Giordano
  • Elizabth Girardi
  • Janet Goodsell
  • Susan Gosden
  • Margaret Guillaume
  • Kate Haq
  • David and Donna Hartney
  • Nan Haynes
  • Erin  Heald
  • Ed Healy
  • Barbara Henderson
  • Garrett Hodgson
  • Paul & Barb Hogan
  • Peter Hunt
  • Peter and Mary Jo Hunt
  • Thomas Hyde
  • Joan Hyman
  • Catherine Irish
  • Nancy Irwin
  • Michael Jason
  • Linda Johnson
  • Todd  Joseph
  • William Joyce
  • Olga Karman
  • Mary Beth Karr
  • Kathryn Kauffman
  • Cheyenne Ketter – Franklin
  • Robert Kieffer
  • John Kolaga
  • KC Kratt
  • Melissa Leonard
  • Cindy Letro
  • Sylvia  Lloyd
  • Aaron Lowinger
  • Molly Magavern
  • Lynn Magol
  • Anthony M. and Kathleen M. Masiello
  • Shannon Mccabe
  • Alexandra  Mcpherson 
  • Bernadette Medige
  • Robert Milch
  • Bondi Miller
  • John Mitchell
  • Alexandra Montante
  • Logan Montone
  • Kevin Moran 
  • Morgan Morris
  • Elizabeth Murphy
  • Margaret Murray
  • Michael Nanfara
  • Geraldine Nevilles
  • Philip Niswander
  • Margery Nobel
  • Anne Noble
  • Jill Norton
  • Breonna Norward
  • Valerie Nowak
  • Alphonso & Marcia Oneilwhite 
  • Shannon Patch
  • Clotilde Perez-Bode Dedecker
  • Ann Philippone
  • Stephanie Phillips
  • Diane Picard
  • Print2Web, LLC – Gene Szerbiak
  • Gary Quenneville
  • Erwin Rakoczy
  • Colden Ray
  • Linda Ray
  • Patricia Reeder
  • Analiese Reigstad
  • Peter Rindfuss
  • Gary Earl Ross
  • Marvel Ross-Jones
  • Stephanie Rothenberg
  • Hugh and Linda Russ
  • Paul Rutecki
  • Sean Ryan
  • Rachelle  Satchell Robinson
  • Anne Schaefer
  • Jeanne Schmidt
  • Donna Sholk
  • Cynthia  Silverstein
  • Nan and Walter Simpson
  • Nicholas  Sinatra
  • Nicholas And Courtney Sinatra
  • Anthony  Siu 
  • SJM3 Fund @ The Community Foundation For Greater Buffalo
  • Brandi Smith
  • Kristi Sokol
  • Elizabeth Stanton
  • Jonathan and Tanya Staples
  • Steve Swift
  • Technet MSP
  • Maria Testa
  • The Chapel
  • VMware Foundation
  • Jack Walsh
  • Erin Warford
  • Gaye Whyte
  • Elizabeth Meg Williams
  • Morgan Williams-Bryant
  • Margaret Wooster
  • Tamara Zabawa
  • Judy Zeckhauser
  • Geraldine Zust
  • Vicki Zust
  • Norvella Pendergrass’ Network of Friends
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Say Yes Buffalo seeks to transform the Western New York economy by investing in its future workforce — Buffalo’s young people.

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Join us by becoming a mentor or connecting us to your business to provide internships for Say Yes Scholars.

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Join us by investing in our scholarship and help us and help us spread the word about Say Yes Buffalo and the Say Yes Forever campaign.

Want to create your own personal online fundraising campaign in support of Say Yes Forever?
Contact Tanice Pendergrass at: tpendergrass@sayyestoeducation.org or call 716-247-5310.