Speakers at this year's 'Rally in Gally' included, from left, Dr. Lisa Williams, Dr. Tenpao Lee, Scott Bieler, president and CEO of West Herr Automotive Group, Joe Winter, and Dr. Derek Wesley.

The College of Business Administration’s second annual “Rally in Gally” took place Wednesday, Sept. 28. Approximately 350 business students, distinguished guests, advisory board members and faculty came together to celebrate their connections to one another and their Vincentian mission and heritage. Headlining the event as the keynote speaker was Scott Bieler, president and CEO of the West Herr Automotive Group.

Dr. Lisa Williams, associate professor of management, kicked off the gathering by welcoming the students and asking them to take in the surroundings, noting their friends and peers, some of whom will be professional colleagues in the not-too-distant future. She made note of all that lies ahead of them here at NU. Joseph Winter, assistant professor of accounting, emceed the event and introduced Dr. Derek Wesley, vice president for institutional advancement, to say a few words. Dr. Wesley spoke about the connections to a larger educational community and how students should use Niagara University in all facets as a resource while being connected here at Monteagle Ridge.

Winter then introduced Bieler, “He exemplifies leadership, outstanding business acumen, prominent ethical practices and philanthropic efforts throughout Western New York.” For the past 19 years, Bieler has been the leader of West Herr,  which is now the largest automotive dealer group in New York and 20th in the nation. Bieler and West Herr support such charitable endeavors as Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Hospice, Kids Escaping Drugs and Child & Family Services.

Bieler, who has a business degree from Erie Community College, spoke extensively about following your passion, treating others with respect and dignity, and relationship building and teamwork. Bieler’s passion is automobiles and he has been associated with this product line for 41 years, starting out as a salesman, working toward manager, before being promoted to general manager/partner and then becoming majority owner of the business in 2000. He elaborated about West Herr’s business philosophy of instilling impactful community action into corporate success, which has been in place for over 66 years.

Wrapping things up, Dr. Tenpao Lee, interim dean of the College of Business Administration, expressed his appreciation for Bieler’s visionary leadership and involvement with this year’s rally, while echoing the theme of following your passion in life to the students in attendance.

Winter then thanked professors Vincent Agnello and John Overbeck for their involvement with this year’s event and introduced the four new faculty members that joined the College of Business Administration this semester:

Two lucky students whose admission ticket numbers were picked walked away with new tablet computers.