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Retired D’Youville president confirmed as head of NFTA board

Sr. Denise A. Roche, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s choice to head the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, was confirmed by the State Senate in the waning hours of the 2016 legislative session.

NFTA spokesman Michael Martinec said the retired president of D’Youville College was approved on Friday, and is slated to replace Howard A. Zemsky, who will remain as Cuomo’s economic development commissioner.

The Senate also confirmed Joan G. Aul of Lockport, an M&T Bank executive slated to replace Henry M. Sloma of Niagara County, a veteran commissioner who resigned earlier this year.

Martinec said commissioners serving as “holdovers” (those whose terms have expired) include Philip G. Wilcox, a gubernatorial appointee whose term ended in 2014. The term of another appointee of the governor – Bonita R. Durand – expires on June 30, he added.

The terms of Dr. LaVonne E. Ansari (appointed by the county executive) and Dr. Wesley L. Hicks Jr. (appointed by the County Legislature) also expire on June 30.