Cantara has led First Niagara's Commercial Services Group since 2007, and its financial services businesses, including insurance, benefits consulting and wealth management, since 2001, when he first joined the company. Under his leadership, the company's commercial lending business has established itself as a top regional franchise, with industry leading growth and performance. Prior to joining First Niagara, Cantara spent more than 20 years in public accounting, including eight with Price Waterhouse and 12 as the managing partner of a regional accounting firm he co-founded.A lifelong resident of Western New York, Cantara is active in the community, and serves on multiple boards, including the Albright Knox Art Gallery, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, the Richardson Olmstead Complex, and is former Chair of Artpark & Company. He is also a member of the University at Buffalo School of Management Dean's Advisory Council, the Buck Institute Advisory Council and the Dean's International Council at the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago.
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