Administration Cabinet & Senior Staff

CRod Headshot

Deputy Mayor and Chief of Staff Crystal Rodriguez-Dabney, Esq.  

Deputy Mayor Crystal Rodriguez-Dabney is a lifelong resident of Buffalo. She holds an Advanced Certification in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University, a Master of Laws and a Juris Doctorate from the University at Buffalo Law School. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences from California State University in San Marcos. Since 2018, she served as the Chief of Staff to Katherine S. Conway-Turner, Ph.D., President of Buffalo State College, where she oversaw the day-to-day operations of the President’s office, among other duties. She also served as Chief Diversity Officer, where she oversaw the College’s Equity and Campus Diversity program.

Rodriguez-Dabney is a longstanding public servant and community volunteer who has also served on a number of boards, including Read to Succeed Buffalo, Buffalo Prep Alumni Council, and UB’s Law School Alumni Association as co-chair of its Social Justice Committee. She also served as a Former Chair of the Miss Borinquen Leadership Development program and is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.


Michael Marcy,  Deputy Chief of Staff / Director of Intergovernmental Affairs (email Michael Marcy)

Michael Marcy is the Deputy Chief of Staff for the City of Buffalo and has over 20 years of experience in government relations. Mr. Marcy graduated with a B.A. in Political Science and Philosophy from St. Bonaventure University in 2000. Michael Marcy’s work experience includes positions in the White House Office of Legislative Affairs, the United States Senate, and the United States House of Representatives. Mike has worked for Mayor Byron W. Brown for the last 15 years. In his current role, he serves as the principal liaison to federal, state and city elected officials and assists the First Deputy Mayor / Chief of Staff and the Mayor with day-to-day City management and works to achieve the Mayor’s policy objectives.  


Commissioner Otis Barker, Sr., Community Services & Recreational Programming

Otis Barker has over 24 years of results-oriented experience in staff management, project management, budgeting and planning, and product/market research. In 2018, he was appointed to Commissioner of Community Services and Recreational Programming, where he manages the daily operations of Contract Administration and Compliance, the Division of Senior Services, the Commission on Citizen’s Rights and Community Relations, Recreational Programming, the Division for Youth Services and the Division for Workforce Employment Training. Commissioner Barker served as the District Office Chief of Staff to the former Deputy Speaker of the New York State Assembly, Arthur O. Eve from 1996-2002. Following his time in the State Assembly, he served as Director of Community Relations for State Senator Byron W. Brown, where he oversaw constituent services. In 2006, Barker was appointed by Mayor Brown to the position of Director of the Division for Youth.


Corporation Counsel Cavette Chambers, City of Buffalo Law Department

Corporation Counsel Chambers joined City’s Law Department in 2006. Ms. Chambers serves on the City’s Board of Ethics where she provides advice and counsel to City officials and employees to ensure that they live up to and maintain the highest ethical standards. Her work with the City’s Foreclosure Assistance Program has helped create strong partnerships with legal service agencies to assist residents to stay in their homes.  Corporation Counsel Chambers is the first Jamaican-American woman to be appointed for Corporation Counsel in the City of Buffalo.


Commissioner Jason Shell, Department of Assessment and Taxation

As a public servant who graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the State University of New York at Brockport, Jason C. Shell brings over 15 years of public sector experience to the Department of Assessment & Taxation. In his previous role, Commissioner Shell served 11 years as a manager in the Brown Administration,  as an Administrator of Public Works, as Deputy Commissioner of Buildings and Energy Management and as a Quality of Life Programs Manager for the Buffalo Urban Renewal Agency.  He also served as Intergovernmental Coordinator for the Buffalo Sewer Authority.


Commissioner Delano D. Dowell, Sr., Administration and Finance

Delano D. Dowell, Sr. is an accountant with 21 years of accounting/finance experience in both the public and private sectors. Delano holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from D’Youville College he worked at Sodexo for over 16 years as a Staff Accountant, Senior Accountant and Unit Controller. Delano has held serval accounting positions within the City of Buffalo including Senior Assistant to the Commissioner of Administration and Finance, Special Assistant to the Comptroller, Deputy Comptroller and was appointed to Commissioner of Administration and Finance on July 18, 2022. Delano loves working with youth and giving back to his community 


Commissioner Gladys "G.G." Herndon-Hill, Human Resources

Mayor Byron W. Brown appointed Gladys Herndon-Hill Commissioner of the Department of Human Resources in December 2014. Commissioner Herndon-Hill began her City service in 1996 as the Administrative Director of Civil Service and also served as the Director of Personnel. In her current role, she oversees all business and operational facets in the Administration of New York Civil Service Law and Local Civil Service Rules, Personnel Administration, as well as Compensation & Benefits divisions. Commissioner Herndon-Hill graduated from The State University of New York at Binghamton.


Executive Director Brendan Mehaffy, Office of Strategic Planning

Brendan Mehaffy was appointed Executive Director of the Office of Strategic Planning in March 2010. Mehaffy's appointment was a central part of the city's economic development reorganization effort, which Mayor Brown announced during his 2009 State of the City Address, resulting in over $6 billion in economic development. Mehaffy began working for the City of Buffalo's an attorney in the city's Law Department, where he was the point person on several high profile projects, including negotiating with the county on the return of the operation and management of city parks. Prior to working for the city, he worked in private practice and was focused on land use, environmental and small business development issues. This included working with municipalities across the country to revise and update their zoning codes. He holds a B.A. in economics from SUNY Binghamton, a Masters degree in urban regional planning from the London School of Economics and a J.D. in law from the University at Buffalo.


Director Oswaldo Mestre, Citizen Services

Oswaldo Mestre Jr. is the Director of Citizen Services and is the city's first Chief Service Officer. Appointed in 2006 by Mayor Brown, Director Mestre was tasked with developing the 311 Call and Resolution Center. He also oversees a number of ancillary services to educate and further engage city residents, including the Citizen’s Participation Academy, Urban Fellows program, the Community Crime Prevention Initiative, the Anti-Graffiti & Clean City Program, the Open Data initiative, and the highly effective Operation Clean Sweep program. Director Mestre is a graduate of the University at Buffalo through the Equal Opportunity Program (EOP), he also serves on a number of Committees and Boards and is the recipient of many awards and recognitions, most recently named one of GovTech Magazine’s 25 Doers, Dreamers, and Drivers of 2017 and one of Computerworld’s 2016 Premier 100 Technology Leaders.


Commissioner Raymond Wagner, Division of Parking

Raymond Wagner completed his master’s degree in Public Administration at Buffalo State College. While attending Buffalo State, Raymond was the President of the Graduate Student Association and was awarded the Dr. Keith Henderson scholarship due to his high grades and commitment to the program. His Master’s project was an assessment of Buffalo State’s current parking software which compared the capabilities and limitations against T2 systems. In 2008, he began his career in the Parking Services department at Buffalo State College.  Starting as a student assistant, Raymond worked his way up to Associate Director of Parking Services. In August 0f 2022, Raymond was sworn in as the Commissioner of Parking for the City of Buffalo. His top priority will be to look for innovative ways of meeting the ongoing parking demands as the city continues to grow.


Chief Diversity Officer, Chantele Thompson, Office of Diversity

Chantele Thompson is a graduate of City Honors School and holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Canisius College, as well as a Master of Public Administration and Master of Education, both from Regent University. Chantele is currently pursuing her doctorate in American and Africana Studies at the University of Buffalo. Chantele has served the Buffalo and the Western New York communities throughout her entire career in service of marginalized and underrepresented groups in the areas of public health, nonprofit, mental health, and education. In addition to service to her local community, Chantele has served in Ghana, Ivory Coast, the Dominican Republic, and Haiti.


Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia, Buffalo Police Department

Joseph A. Gramaglia was appointed as the 42nd Police Commissioner of the City of Buffalo on March 2, 2022. Commissioner Gramaglia is a graduate of the State University of New York at Fredonia with a bachelor’s degree in communications and the State University of New York College at Buffalo with a Master of Public Administration. Additionally, he has attended the FBI National Executive Institute and the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police.   With over 28 years of police experience, Commissioner Gramaglia is a staunch advocate for reducing gun and gang violence through community engagement and scientific data driven strategies.  He believes in building strong relationships within the community based on trust and transparency.   Commissioner Gramaglia has instituted numerous evidenced based strategies within the department including an enhanced custom notification based program and in 2022, implemented an enhanced data driven micro-hot spot violent crime reduction plan that has shown immediate results in the reduction of shootings throughout the city.  


Commissioner William Renaldo, Buffalo Fire Department

Fire Commissioner Renaldo is a 30 year veteran of the Buffalo Fire Department and a former Buffalo Fire Battalion Chief, employed from 1982-2012. He served on active duty in the United States Army for four years (1975-1979), before serving in the United States Army Reserve until 2014. During his tenure as Battalion Chief, he distinguished himself with hard work, dedication to duty and a strong record of performing complex emergency service and administrative work with a broad range of responsibilities from the direction of emergency operations, to review of administrative reports and payroll to ensure accuracy and completeness, to the coordination of overall training, including all aspects of emergency response, disaster planning and fire prevention and education.During his military career, Renaldo has received numerous individual awards and decorations for meritorious acts of bravery, including a Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Combat Action Badge (CAB), Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and many more. Renaldo has a B.S. in Criminal Justice, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Public Management from the State University of New York at Buffalo.