The Police Athletic League of Buffalo, Inc. (PAL) is a not-for-profit organization that provides youth of the City of Buffalo with recreational, educational, cultural, environmental and preventive program activities in structured, supervised and organized settings, using professional recreation and law enforcement personnel, in an effort to provide leadership, direction and an opportunity for those youth to become responsible, successful adults.
Buffalo PAL provides athletic and educational programs, arts and crafts, field trips, holiday parties and a host of other activities at seven Community Centers in the City of Buffalo. In addition, PAL conducts Basketball Leagues in Summer, Fall, and Winter for both Boys and Girls; a Baseball League in the summer; a Floor Hockey Program in the winter; and a year around Boxing Program. Other activities include: Tennis – “Love To Serve Tennis;” Golf – “Clubs For Kids;” Ice Skating – “Learn to Skate;” and Bicycle Safety and Bike Helmet Giveaways scheduled each year in City Parks, Community Centers and other venues.
The PAL is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization operating under the direction of a Board of Directors.
Our Mission is as follows:
“The Mission of PAL is to improve the immediate and future quality of life for the youth of our city and surrounding communities through educational, recreational, cultural, social/emotional, and prevention quality programming in collaboration with law enforcement.”
These programs are offered but not limited to community-based organizations and not-for-profit 501(c)(3) youth service agencies and facilities; this collaborative rationale is part of an effort to maximize, not duplicate, opportunities furnished to area youth.
The Police Athletic League enjoys a rich history of providing athletic and educational programming to the youths of the City of Buffalo and Western New York. In the 1950’s and 1960’s, the PAL operated several Community Centers throughout the City with game room activities and sports programming for neighborhood kids including a boxing program at the Austin Street site. In addition, in conjunction with the Buffalo Evening News conducted the BEN-PAL baseball league in Riverside, Delaware and Cazenovia Parks.
After a period of declining enrollment and building closings, a commitment was made by former Buffalo Mayor Anthony Masiello as he entered office in 1994 to rebuild the PAL to once again provide quality athletic and educational programming to the boys and girls of the City of Buffalo. He accomplished this by providing seed money to PAL generated from proceeds from his Inaugural Ball and through the collaboration of the Buffalo Police Parks and Recreation and PAL employees. A memorandum of Understanding signed in 1997 formalized the cooperative relationship between the City and PAL and allowed PAL Staffers to work alongside Recreation personnel to provide a seamless provision of a wide range of services.
Mayor Byron Brown has continued that commitment by enhancing the relationship between PAL and the Department of Community Services and Recreational Programming. PAL provides athletic and educational programs, arts and crafts, field trips, holiday parties and a host of other activities at the seven Community Centers.
Buffalo PAL conducts Basketball Leagues in Summer, Fall, and Winter for both Boys and Girls; a Baseball League in the summer; a Floor Hockey Program in the winter; a year around Boxing Program; and a highly regarded program for teenage girls – the ”You Go Girl” Program. Other activities include for Tennis – “Love to Serve Tennis;” Golf – “Clubs For Kids;” Ice Skating – “Learn to Skate;” and Bicycle Safety and Bike Helmet Giveaways scheduled each year in City Parks, Community Centers and other venues.
The Police Athletic League is supported through grants from the City of Buffalo, the County of Erie, New York State, Business and Community sponsors and donations from the public.
Board of Directors
Chair: Hon. Byron W. Brown
President: Chief Dennis J. Richards
Vice President: James P. Milbrand, Esq.
Sectretary: James Nowicki
Treasurer: Michael Seaman
Anthony M. Masiello
John P. Pieri, Esq.
Hon. Robert T. Russell
Kevin J. Eberle, Ed.D
Det. Mark J. Fitzpatrick, Ret.
Michael J. Flaherty, Jr., Esq.
John A. Gillespie, MD
Hon. Craig D. Hannah
Michael P. Hughes
Will Keresztes, Ed.D
Capt. Patrick Mann
Charles C. Martorana, Esq.
Baby Joe Mesi
Officer Debra Perry-Kelly
David Shatzel, Jr.
Luis Tavaras, Dr.
Charles F. Torres
Richard A. Berkson, MD
Nekia C. Kemp
Police Athletic League
Nekia Kemp, MS
Artis Green III
Assistant Program Coordinator
Data Management & Outcomes Director
Administrative Assistant/ Summer Program Coordinator