Jay Tokasz - The Buffalo News

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Jay Tokasz

Jay Tokasz, who covers higher education for The Buffalo News, has spent 24 years in newspapers, writing on a wide range of subjects, from evidence-tampering cops to papal elections. He previously worked for the Ithaca Journal and the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle.


Just how generous are residents in the City of Good Neighbors anyway?At least $639 million worth over the past four years, a new study released Monday suggests.That's the amount a group of representative charitable organizations in Erie County received between 1998 and 2001 from individuals, businesses and foundations, according to a report examining giving patterns in the…

Jaymaya Auls absorbed more pain in 22 months than most people experience in a lifetime.Her tiny right arm had been twisted so hard that it fractured. She had teeth marks on her arms and legs, and scars around her neck. Her forehead was bruised, her gums bloodied and three of her ribs broken.Sadder yet, those 22 months were all of the lifetime little Jaymaya would know.A Bu…

Bracing for more negative financial fallout from last year's terrorist attacks, 150 Erie County health and human service agencies have pledged to work more closely with each other when they ask state policymakers for money.They also unveiled late last week a 29-page report for use as a blueprint in lobbying efforts.The report, "Advocating With One Voice for Children & Fami…

Creating a parkway that allows safer, more seamless walking from Delaware Park to various cultural institutions emerged as a common theme among several ideas for a redesigned Scajaquada Expressway.The parkway concept could incorporate more landscaping, traffic circles and redesigned interchanges around streets such as Elmwood Avenue and Grant Street.One suggestion included…

In 1927, African-Americans flowed into Northern industrial cities like Buffalo seeking decent jobs and running into a wall of racial discrimination trying to land them.The Buffalo Urban League was established to help black families migrating from the South find those jobs, as well as homes and roots in the community.Seventy-five years later, the challenges facing the agenc…

The United Way of Buffalo & Erie County reached its campaign goal in the nick of time this week, allowing its staffers, volunteers and supporters to celebrate on Friday.Donors pledged $20,013,647 to this year's fund drive, which started in August with a goal of $20 million.The tally was announced during a luncheon in the Buffalo Convention Center for about 800 United Way s…

Dick Gallagher wondered what he had done wrong.How had he failed as a father? Why wasn't he able to keep his 24-year-old daughter, Christine, alive?He wrestled with such questions on miles-long walks alone, carrying a towel for the tears, unable to make sense of the loss."When you lose a child, that's not the normal progression of life. It's devastating. You get paralyzed,…

A Buffalo mother charged with the killing of a 21-month-old foster child had been caring for the infant girl since June and was certified by Erie County to be a foster parent, a county official said.Arthurlein Holcomb, 35, is scheduled for a felony hearing Friday before City Judge Shirley Troutman. She was charged with two counts of second-degree murder after Buffalo polic…

The latest faces of the homeless in Buffalo bear little resemblance to the vagrant with a shopping cart.There's the family of five evicted from its North Buffalo apartment at the end of August and living in the Salvation Army shelter on Main Street.A former state corrections officer, trying to shake a drug habit and overcome chronic depression, now lives in a shelter with …

The moment of truth arrived Wednesday morning at Charity Fundings on Vulcan Street.That's when Western New York nonprofit organizations learned how much they would benefit from used cars recently donated to charity -- an increasingly popular way to get rid of an unwanted vehicle.Wednesday is auction morning at Charity Fundings, a side venture of Salvage Management, designe…

Erie County officials are hailing their partnership with a local faith-based organization as a way to address the problem of wayward children.County Executive Joel A. Giambra on Tuesday praised the work of the Citadel Home for Boys, saying the residence for Persons in Need of Supervision, or PINS, was both saving the county money and preventing children from getting into m…

Students stuck in failing schools in Buffalo and Albany may soon get a chance to go somewhere else, thanks to a $4.4 million federal grant.The Brighter Choice Public School Choice Project was awarded the grant to help plan and create new charter schools, magnet schools and alternative schools. In addition, some of the money will go toward allowing children in failing city …

Carlo Annibale, 72, of the Town of Tonawanda, a blind touring organist who played throughout Western New York and who in 1972 took the unusual step of hiring the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra to perform with him, died Thursday (Oct. 3, 2002) in Schofield Residence in the Town of Tonawanda after a long battle with Parkinson's disease.Annibale, who was blind since age 12, a…

It is an autumn ritual in many Western New York workplaces: the pitch, the campaign film, the pledge cards.Each fall, Marybeth Karnuth is one of thousands of area employees who dutifully complete a form authorizing the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County to deduct a weekly charitable gift from her paycheck. She plans to give $3 a week this year."I've upped it 50 cents ever…

The digital divide in Buffalo may be getting a little narrower.State and city officials Thursday celebrated the grand opening of a $500,000 computer laboratory aimed at bringing high technology to people with low incomes.The new lab at the Martha Mitchell Community Center on Oakmont Avenue is the first of its kind in a public housing complex in New York State.It features 2…