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Meet Ed Moore: Creating Opportunities to Strengthen Inclusive Workplace Practices

“By creating opportunities for suppliers to connect with large employers they wouldn’t have otherwise had access to, these member organizations are redirecting their spend so we keep the money in Western New York and help the economy here grow and thrive.” That is how Ed Moore describes this impact of the Buffalo Purchasing Initiative (BPI), which works to create a convening resource for Buffalo’s large employers to explore strategies and share resources to expand purchasing opportunities with local businesses owned by people of color.

Ed is the Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer at Rich Products, where he leads Rich’s human resources functions including diversity, equity and inclusion, talent management, talent acquisition, total rewards and more. Also serving as Chair of the Roundtable’s Business Leaders Task Force, which launched the BPI five years ago, Ed joins leaders from 14 other large local employers— including Catholic Health, City of Buffalo, Erie County Medical Center, Highmark Western and Northeastern NY, Independent Health, Kaleida Health, KeyBank, M&T Bank, Moog, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, SUNY Buffalo State, Tops Supermarkets, University at Buffalo and Wegmans— to advance the mission of the BPI.

“What we were finding was, as large employers, we typically had contracts for services and supplies with people we knew, people we were familiar with,” Ed explained. “In Western New York, and in Buffalo in particular, we know that we’re a pretty segregated community and by making introductions between small businesses owned by people of color and large employers, we are creating more opportunities for new businesses to work with us.”

To date, Ed cited three major accomplishments of the BPI. Those include increasing the amount spent with local businesses of color by almost $60 million. “Through our coordinated efforts, there is $60 million that would have otherwise gone elsewhere that is now staying right here in Western New York,” Ed said.

That difference is seen all around Western New York, for small businesses like Marshall’s Master Cleaning Plus and Golden Cup Coffee, both of which have contracts with Rich’s as well as other employer members. These relationships are a direct result of the BPI. “We try to work with the small businesses in a way that not only has them supply us, but we build their capabilities,” added Ed.

Looking ahead, Ed said that Rich’s and the other employer members are focused on the sustainability of the BPI to ensure its longevity in Western New York. “We plan to continue to look for ways to fulfill our mission of building inclusive workplaces,” he said. “I’ve been very proud to see this group of companies come together with such commitment. This is really all driven by our collective desire to do the right thing. I think we are making a significant impact on Western New York.”