News Release
 May 25, 2022
CONTACT: Kathy Sautter
716 635 5577

100% of funds raised benefit victims’ families, survivors, and those impacted

Williamsville, NY - Tops Markets and the National Compassion Fund, the 501(c)(3) nonprofit that distributes charitable contributions in the aftermath of mass casualty crimes, today announced the co-chairs of the Buffalo-community Steering Committee. This committee will be led by Reverend Mark Blue, pastor of Second Baptist Church in Lackawanna and President of the Buffalo NAACP and Paul Vukelic, President and CEO of Try-It Distributing.

The other members of this steering committee will be named in the coming weeks. The committee will work closely with the guidance of the National Compassion Fund to establish a series of protocols, procedures, and timelines for distributing the funds collected through the Buffalo 5/14 Survivors Fund, benefitting those impacted by the May 14, 2022 attack at the Tops Friendly Market on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo, NY.

“This committee, which will be made up of local business, community and faith leaders, will volunteer their time to serve and recognize the incredible generosity of those who have donated and approach this responsibility with both compassion and respect,” said Reverend Blue.

Paul Vukelic added, “the goal of the steering committee is to help the Buffalo victims’ families, survivors, and those impacted as much as possible, with intentions of transparency, integrity, compassion, and fairness. We take this responsibility very seriously and are committed to doing what is right for all involved.”

“This committee is important so that we can ensure that 100% of the funds go to the victims in a fair manner,” said Jeff Dion, Executive Director of the National Compassion Fund, which has assisted victims of many recent atrocities, including those in Orlando, FL; Las Vegas, NV; Parkland, FL; and El Paso, TX. “We are very fortunate to have dedicated Steering Committee Co-Chairs to ensure that our process is informed by community input and community values.”

To date, more than $1.55 million has been donated to the Buffalo 5/14 Survivors Fund by more than 8,500 donors. Donations can be made at Those wishing to make donations by check or wire transfer should email for details.


About the National Compassion Fund The National Compassion Fund is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that collects and distributes charitable contributions in the aftermath of mass casualty crimes. It is a subsidiary of the National Center for Victims of Crime, the nation’s leading resource and advocacy organization for crime victims and those who serve them.

About Tops Friendly Markets Based in Williamsville, NY, Tops Markets currently operates 150 grocery stores in New York, Pennsylvania, and Vermont, including five that are run by franchisees. As the largest private, for-profit employer in Western New York, with over 14,000 associates, the company is dedicated to providing sustainably sourced, high-quality products, while helping its communities flourish via support for programs that eradicate hunger and disease, educate youth and reduce environmental waste and energy consumption. For more information, visit


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